Revenue from liquor for Tamil Nadu increased by 4 per cent in 2023-24 but its contribution to the State’s Own Tax Revenue (SOTR) has declined by 2 percentage points compared with the previous year.

As per the Home, Prohibition and Excise Department Policy Note 2023-24 filed by the State government on Friday, tax revenue from liquor in 2023-24 was ₹45,856 crore as against ₹44,121 crore in the previous year. This tax revenue from alcohol comprised 27.4 per cent of SOTR in 2023-24  against 29.4 per cent in the previous year, according to government data.

All the other heads, including land revenue, stamp duty and registration fees and SGST, contributed to the overall increase in SOTR in 2023-24,  per Budget documents in CAG reports.

Special Teams

Meanwhile, to curb smuggling of rectified spirit, spurious liquor and other State liquor from neighbouring States, special teams are formed to collect human intelligence and through CDR analysis track and nab the offenders.

There are 45 permanent prohibition check posts functioning throughout the State to curb the movement of illicit liquor.

Hooch tragedies

In a few districts, death due to consumption of methanol was reported. Prompt action by the Police and District administration led to the arrest of the accused immediately and prevented further loss of life. The cases registered on this incident were transferred to CB-CID and are under investigation. Methanol, which was the main reason for causing hooch tragedies in 2002 was brought within the ambit of the Tamil Nadu Prohibition Act, 1937. Suitable amendments were also made in 2002 in the Tamil Nadu Denatured Spirit, Methyl Alcohol and Varnish (French Polish) Rules, 1959 to maintain strict control over possession, use, transportation, import, sales etc., of methanol.

District Superintendents of Police have also been instructed to check all methanol manufacturing units, end-users, factories, industries that have licenses to possess methanol in the State. Their monthly reports are closely analysed at the Enforcement Headquarters. All District Collectors have been instructed by the Government to monitor all the units in possession of methanol licenses and inspect these premises frequently and check for any deviation or malpractice, the Policy Note says.