Pay More to Get High in Kerala as Sales Tax on Liquor up by 4%

The Kerala government on Wednesday raised the sales tax on liquor by four per cent. This means people will have to shell out more money from their pocket for Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) in Kerala.

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan chaired a cabinet meeting where it was decided to increase the Sales Tax on foreign liquor, levied under the Kerala General Sales Tax Act, 1963, by four per cent. The Cabinet also took a decision to forgo the five per cent Turnover Tax (ToT) levied on distilleries which are manufacturing and selling foreign liquor within the state.

The Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) said decks has been cleared for the Kerala State Beverages Corporation to increase its warehouse margin by one per cent. “Currently, there will be no change in the price of foreign liquor procured from the Corporation distilleries…” the statement said.

Customers will also have to pay more for foreign liquor as its price will be increased by two per cent.

The waiving off ToT on distilleries would result in loss of revenue to the southern state and to cover that the present Kerala General Sales Tax rate would be increased by four per cent, the statement added. “For that, a Bill will be presented in the Assembly to amend the Kerala General Sales Tax Act, 1963,” it said.

Among other things, the Cabinet decided to grant an additional government guarantee of Rs 100 crore to the Kerala State Women’s Development Corporation to avail funds from the National Minority Development Finance Corporation.

The criteria/guidelines to identify eligible prisoners for granting special relaxation of sentences on occasions like Independence Day, Republic Day and so on, would be revised.

It also decided to buy new Mahindra Bolero vehicles for the police, excise and fingerprint bureaus, the statement said.

(With PTI inputs)

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