Teams will be deployed to ensure that all COVID-related protocols are followed and a close watch will be maintained on the liquor shops which are set to to reopen after a gap of over one and half months on Monday, officials said. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday announced various relaxations including opening of markets, malls and standalone shops in Delhi from Monday.
The liquor vends in many parts of the city had witnessed huge crowds minutes after the lockdown was announced by the chief minister on April.
The ongoing lockdown imposed since April 19 has been extended further to June 16. The Delhi government in a clarification said liquor stores in the city will open on odd-even basis from 10 AM to 8 PM.
"We will keep watch on the situation as liquor shops open on Monday. Teams will be deployed to ensure that all COVID-related protocols are followed," said a senior government official.
The revenue services in districts like registry of properties will also resume from Monday. The alcoholic beverages industry has welcomed reopening of liquor shops in Delhi, saying it was vital for revenue generation.
"I feel there should be more clarity on the odd-even rule since there are standalone shops. But the first thing is reopening the shops and the ease of availability to the customers."
"I'd also say the instructions should be made clear to all the shops about social distancing and other guidelines," said Vinod Giri, director general of Indian Alcoholic Beverage Companies.
Delhi Disaster Management Authority(DDMA) has in its order directed that all COVID-appropriate behaviour, including use of face mask and social distancing, should be maintained at all the malls, markets, market complexes, standalone shops, and neighbourhood shops.
If the norms of COVID-appropriate behaviour are not maintained by any shop, then it will be liable to be closed and its owner may face prosecution under relevant laws, the order has said.