- Delhi Lieutenant Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena on Saturday suspended 11 Delhi officials.
- On August 1, Saxena had approved the AAP government's move to extend excise licenses.
- But today, he suspended Delhi excise commissioner Arav Gopi Krishna among other officials.
Delhi excise policy news: Delhi Lieutenant Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena on Saturday suspended 11 Delhi officials including ex-excise commissioner Arav Gopi Krishna, citing lapses in implementing the excise policy. On August 1, Saxena had approved the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government's move to extend excise licenses of private liquor vends as well as hotels and bars by a month, holding out hope that alcohol supply would be resumed in a city that had to observe an unofficial dry day.
Meanwhile earlier today, Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia accused former lieutenant governor Anil Baijal of changing his stand over opening liquor vends in unauthorized areas and claimed that it led to a loss of thousands of crores of rupees to the city government.
At a press conference in Delhi, Sisodia said he has sent the details of the matter to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and asserted that there should be a probe into it. No immediate reaction was available from Baijal.
"Under the new excise policy, 849 shops were to be opened across Delhi, including in unauthorised areas. The LG did not object to the proposal and approved it," Sisodia said.
However, on November 15 last year, two days before the implementation of the policy, the LG changed his stand and introduced a condition that permission from the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) and the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) would be needed for opening liquor shops in unauthorized areas, he alleged.
The government has now withdrawn the policy and is preparing to run liquor vends under the old excise regime through its undertakings from September 1. Sisodia said it should also be probed why Baijal changed his stand that benefited some players and caused financial losses to the government.