Punjab CM orders crackdown on ‘movers and shakers’ of liquor

CM Captain Amarinder Singh.
CM Captain Amarinder Singh.

In a bid to crackdown on the ugly nexus between manufacturers and transporters that led to the recent hooch tragedy, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has ordered stringent measures, including mandatory GPS linkage, to check intransport pilferage of ethanol, spirits and other products by unscrupulous elements for use in the manufacture of illicit liquor.

 From September 5, no vehicles will be allowed to transport such products without tamper-proof sealing and GPS enabling, as per the directives issued on Wednesday by Excise Commissioner Rajat Agarwal on the Chief Minister’s orders.

The GPS coordinates of the vehicle will need to be preserved by the unit for a period of not less than 15 days from the date of completion of delivery of a consignment, according to the directives, aimed at providing checks on transportation of Extra Neutral Alcohol (ENA), Ethanol, Specially Denatured Spirit (SDS), Denatured Spirit (DNS) and Rectified Spirit (RS) by the distilleries.

As per the orders, the tamper-proof sealing of the tankers will be done by the distillery units before dispatch and the seal will be broken only by the recipient, under the new rules. Both dispatch and receiving units will have to maintain records and certifications to this effect for each tanker/truck.

Further, it will be the responsibility of the receiving unit to ensure that the entire contents of the material purchased and carried in the transport vehicle have been unloaded and there is no residue material in the transport vehicle.