Delhi hotels and restaurants to serve liquor from Sep 9 on a trial basis

Topics Coronavirus | Liquor sale

An official said that no standing customer will be served liquor and all establishments will also have to ensure provision for sanitiser dispenser and thermal scanning at the entrance | Illustration: Ajay Mohanty

Hotels, restaurants and clubs in Delhi were allowed to serve liquor on a trial basis from September 9-30, but not more than 50 per cent of their seating capacity will be allowed so that Covid-19 distancing norms are followed, officials said Thursday.

As these outlets prepare to serve liquour after over a five-month gap due to the coronavirus pandemic, an official said only asymptomatic customers and staff will be allowed and wearing a mask will be mandatory for entry.

Lt Governor Anil Baijal, who is also the Chairman of Delhi Disaster Management Authority, approved the Delhi government's proposal to allow hotels, clubs and restaurants having excise license to serve liquor to their customers.

An official said that no standing customer will be served liquor and all establishments will also have to ensure provision for sanitiser dispenser and thermal scanning at the entrance.

However, hotels, restaurants and clubs in the Covid-19 containment zones will remain closed.

The official said that they have been allowed to operate from September 9 to September 30 on a trial basis and thereafter, the DDMA will review it.

"Not more than 50 per cent of the approved seating capacity will be allowed inside these establishments so that social distancing norms are maintained," the official said.

The DDMA issued standard operating procedures on Thursday for the functioning of bars in hotels, restaurants and clubs.


Bars shall be permitted outside containment zones in Delhi from Sept 9 to Sept 30 on a trial basis subject to strict compliance to COVID-19 SOPs: Delhi Govt

— ANI (@ANI) September 3, 2020
"Effective and frequent sanitisation within premises shall be done at regular intervals with particular focus on lavatories, drinking and hand washing areas. Rooms, other service areas, seats/tables will be sanitised each time a customer leaves," the DDMA said in its SOPs.


It also stated that only asymptomatic staff will be allowed for duty in the premises and they will be required to wear gloves, face-masks and maintain complete health hygiene.

The DDMA also warned hotels, restaurants and clubs of strict action, including cancellation of their license, if they fail to comply with the SOPs.

It also stated that all public health measures outlined in the SOPs issued by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare will have to be strictly ensured.

It added that adequate manpower will be deployed by clubs, restaurants and hotels for ensuring social distancing norms.

Proper disposal of masks or gloves left over by the customers and staff must be ensured by these establishments. Spitting will be strictly prohibited, it said.

Welcoming the decision, Confederation of Indian Alcoholic Beverage Companies (CIABC) Director General Vinod Giri said, We have repeatedly requested for it and are glad to see the Government yet again demonstrating its progressive and business-friendly outlook.

Though this sector accounts for less than 10% of liquor sales, its rejuvenation is a major psychological milestone on road back to normalcy in Delhi, he said.

He said an estimated 15,000 cases of liquor are locked up in inventory with bars and restaurants, and liquidation of that will be great relief to the hospitality sector.

It will also help in dealing with the livelihood crisis which the workers were facing due to closure of this particular business, he said.

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