June 29, 2020
Chandigarh: To control the production and protect revenue, the Punjab government is all set to implement an IT-based track and trace system.
The move aims at putting a check on the illegal sale of liquor (https://timesoﬁndia.indiatimes.com/topic/liquor) in the state, which robs the exchequer. Once implemented, the system will enable the excise department to track and trace each bottle and case of liquor from distillery to the warehouse and from the warehouse to vends.
There are 16 distillery units, 25 bottling plants and four breweries in the state. Each distillery and brewery will generate printed barcodes having unique serial numbers and information about the batch number, manufacturing date, and expiry date. Bottle readers will also be installed on the production line to know the exact number of bottles being produced. CCTV cameras will be installed inside the plants, instead of the gates, where they are now.
Barcodes will be put on each bottle and box and will be scanned before dispatching the stock to the warehouse of the wholesaler on trucks aﬃxed with fast tags. In addition to the barcode, each bottle will have digitally secured holograms.
Only vehicles with fast tags will be allowed to enter the warehouse. Barcodes of all cases and bottles will be scanned at the warehouse and before sending the stock to retailers, each box and bottle will again be scanned, helping the department to know details of liquor bottles sent to each vend. Retailers will be given POS machines for reading barcodes and the generation of bills.
For implementing the system, the department plans to meet the expenditure by imposing a fee of 50 paise per proof liter on Punjab Medium Liquor (PML) and Indian made foreign liquor (IMFL) and 50 paise per bulk liter on beer. The fee will be chargeable only after the implementation of the system.