BevQ app to be withdrawn when bars start serving liquor

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Though restaurants are allowed to open from June 9, the Centre has not granted permission to start liquor sale in bars.

Thiruvananthapuram: If the central government grants permission to serve liquor in bars, the virtual queue app 'BevQ' will stop service soon. The decision was taken as the mobile app causes huge loss to Beverages Corporation which is a public sector company.

Though restaurants are allowed to open from June 9, the Centre has not granted permission to start liquor sale in bars. The state government allowed to sell liquor as parcel as the sales in bars were stopped. Though it was planned to stop the BevQ app immediately as it affected the sales in Beverages Corporation, the decision was cancelled later.

Even if the app is withdrawn, parcel sales in the bars cannot be stopped. If sale is allowed in outlets only, large crowds will gather in front of liquor shops. The Beverages Corporation can make profit only if the monopoly of selling bottled liquor is granted to the public sector outlets as earlier.

Outlet sale is major income of BevCo

The major source of income of the Beverages Corporation is the margin earned from retail and warehouse sale. The corporation earn 20 percent profit from retail and 8 percent from wholesale selling. The retail selling through the 267 outlets is the major source of income. The income from warehouse is rather low. Liquor is supplied from here to bars also.

When bars get good sale, the corporation gets only 8 percent as profit. But it can earn double the profit by selling through own outlets. The number of outlets is not proportionate to the number of bars. There are about 4-10 bar hotels on the premises of one outlet. The corporation's income declined when the sale was diverted from the outlet to these bars.

According to the corporation, the outlets which do not have a sale of Rs 8 lakh per day are in loss. There are 64 such outlets as mentioned in a report of the corporation submitted to the government. The outlets which used to earn upto Rs 15 lakh per day now earn only Rs 3 lakh. Though sales resumed after the lockdown, new stock is not opened in many places due to low sale.

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