The Andhra Pradesh government on Thursday said that it will be reducing the number of bars that serve liquor in the state.
Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy held a review meeting on government income sources, where concerned officials detailed the revenues from their respective departments.
According to a statement from the Chief Minister's Office (CMO), Jagan was informed that the excise department saw a 8.91 percent decline in the revenue.
The department witnessed an income of Rs 4,043.72 crore in the same period last year, compared to Rs 3,683.25 crore this year.
"Although the officials mentioned the loss of license fee from alcohol shops, the Chief Minister is keen on alcohol ban and has taken a crucial decision for the same," the CMO statement said.
Jagan then directed the officials to reduce the number of bars, stating that this would be implemented from January 1. The government also said that alcohol in bars should be provided only between 11 am and 10 pm.
Prohibition was one of the major poll promises made by the YSRCP, and after taking charge in May this year, the Andhra Pradesh State Beverages Corporation Limited (APSBCL) had taken over the retail of liquor in the state.
The state government plans to implement prohibition in a phased manner and ultimately confine the sale of liquor to only five-star hotels. It has claimed that already, the number of liquor outlets in the state have been reduced from 4,580 to 3,450. Come January 1, more outlets will be shut down.
The YSRCP hopes to bring in total prohibition in this manner, by the end of their five-year tenure.