The Hush Post: If you have been storing up beer bottles at home for a long weekend party, be careful. More than a dozen bottles stocked at home can land you in jail for as many as three years. You could also have to pay a minimum penalty of Rs 2,000, depending upon the brand of alcohol and the number of bottles found.
This means one can store only 12 bottles of beer having volume of 650 ml each, according to the United Provinces (UP) Excise Act, 1910. An excise department official said, “If any quantity of alcohol over and above the permissible limit is found within the premises, the entire consignment is considered contraband”.
Penalties are fixed at ten times the excise duty for the entire consignment.
In September 2017, the UP government had carried out amendments to the Excise Act.
Earlier, punishment under this section included a maximum of two years of imprisonment and a minimum penalty of Rs 500.
But following the 2017 amendments, inter-state smuggling has been made a non-bailable offence in Uttar Pradesh. For instance, a person can carry only a single unit of alcohol at a time into UP from across state borders including Delhi. This, too, is only for consumption and not for sale. If the bottle imported is found with its seal intact at the time of importing. It will be presumed that it is for sale and charges of liquor smuggling can be invoked. The offender can face a maximum of five years in jail.