In a move that has brought cheer to residents of Uttarakhand, the state government has rolled out a unique provision in its excise policy for the fiscal year 2023-24. Starting this year, Uttarakhand residents can obtain a mini-bar licence for their homes at an affordable annual fee of Rs 12,000.
Who’s Eligible for the Mini-Bar Licence?
While this development offers a taste of luxury to the people of Uttarakhand, not everyone can jump on the bandwagon. To apply for a mini-bar licence, an applicant must have a five-year history of filing Income Tax returns. This stringent criterion ensures that only financially responsible individuals are granted the privilege of having a mini-bar at home.
Once approved, the licence holder will be entitled to store a specific quantity of alcoholic beverages, which includes nine liters of Indian-made foreign liquor, 18 liters of foreign alcohol, nine liters of wine, and 15.6 liters of beer within their homes.
Terms and Conditions Apply
The Uttarakhand government has imposed several terms and conditions to regulate the use of these home mini-bars:
- The mini-bar must be used exclusively for personal consumption.
- Commercial activities involving the mini-bar are strictly prohibited.
- The mini-bar must remain closed on notified dry days.
- Access to the area where the mini-bar is located must be restricted to individuals aged 21 and above.
- The renewal of the licence is subject to an inspection of the “home bar” to ensure compliance with regulations.
Taking a Cue from Haryana
This development in Uttarakhand follows a precedent set by Haryana in 2018. Haryana’s excise policy allowed residents to establish home mini-bars upon obtaining a government-issued licence for a fee of Rs 20,000. Unlike Uttarakhand’s annual renewal system, the Haryana licence was valid for a lifetime but required prior permission to host gatherings or parties at the mini-bar.
In Gurgaon, one of Haryana’s major cities, a mini-bar licence allowed the holder to stock up to 12 bottles of Indian foreign liquor (750ml), 24 bottles of Indian-made foreign liquor (750 ml), 12 bottles of rum (750 ml), 24 bottles of beer (650 ml), 24 bottles of wine (750 ml), and 12 bottles of vodka/gin/cider (750 ml). The move in Uttarakhand, however, is expected to offer residents a more affordable and accessible opportunity to enjoy the convenience of a home mini-bar.
With these new regulations in place, Uttarakhand residents can now look forward to a more relaxed and enjoyable way of enjoying their favorite alcoholic beverages in the comfort of their homes.