New Delhi: All stocks of wine and beer transferred from store room to the bar counter must be sold within 3 days, says a Delhi government order. Cheaper liquor brands which are priced under 1,500 must be cleared within 5 day, says the order.

However, brands costing up to 6,000 have been allowed 8 days, according to the notification of the National Capital Territory government issued on Aug 26.

This move comes after multiple raids that resulted in heavy fines or even cancellation of licences and blacklisting the restaurants in the recent past.

The notice reads: "It has been brought to the notice of this department that this practice of not following First In First Out and keeping liquour bottles at the bar counter for a duration beyond their normal period of consumption has potential for misuse through refilling/ adulteration. Department has also received complaints in this regard. The matter has, therefore, been reviewed..."

After the expiry of the period, the stocks have to be destroyed within 7 days and inventory maintained of such stocks.

The order comes into effect on August 31 at 10 a.m.

The Indian Wine Academy, a private consultancy, however has voiced its concern, saying it smacks of corruption. "The policy would increase corruption many-fold and restaurants and hotels would be at the mercy of their new lords and masters who draw considerable clout in any case, immaterial of which government is currently ruling", says the organisation.

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