Haywards Cheers Whiskey is the most smuggled brand into AP, SEB seizes 6.39L liters liquor in 2021

Haywards Cheers Whiskey is the most smuggled brand into Andhra Pradesh, revealed the seized list. The SEB sleuths confiscated 151579 liters of Haywards, followed by Original Choice Delux whiskey, the highest being illegally imported from Karnataka. While Old Admiral Brandy and Mansion House X0 Brandy

By Coreena Suares  Published on  9 Feb 2022 2:50 PM GMT
Haywards Cheers Whiskey is the most smuggled brand into AP, SEB seizes 6.39L liters liquor in 2021

Visakhapatnam: Inspector of police Vissannapeta was on his usual vehicle checking in Krishna district when he came across suspicious commuters wearing oversized warm coats. The cops found no liquor in the vehicle. However, he asked the commuters to step out of the car. The men who looked oversized were unable to take a few steps, raising suspicions.

During frisking, cops noticed a tape-like band strapped around the stomach area and when unwrapped, 123 bottles of non-duty paid liquor was found. This incident in September 2020 exposed one of the several modus operandi of the 'illegal liquor syndicate' in Andhra Pradesh.

Special Enforcement Bureau (SEB), tasked to track down narcotics and liquor syndicates, confiscated 6,39,402 liters of Illegal Distilled liquor (ID) between January to December 25, 2021. The highest quantum (in liters) of liquor seized was from Karnataka (34,6,098.67 liters) followed by Telangana (21,1294.91 liters) and surrounding state Odisha (4,0896.96).

Haywards Cheers Whiskey is the most smuggled brand into Andhra Pradesh, revealed the seized list. The SEB sleuths confiscated 151579 liters of Haywards, followed by Original Choice Delux whiskey, the highest being illegally imported from Karnataka. While Old Admiral Brandy and Mansion House X0 Brandy


However, what is interesting is the modus operandi. Straight out from a scene from movies that exposed the smuggling syndicate and tricks to hoodwink police, smugglers in AP concealed liquor bottles in secret racks set up behind the cabin of the lorry driver, in a tractor carrying chicken excreta, in tetra packets, in fish craters, in milk cans and even buried inside cars.

With the Andhra Pradesh government reducing the number of licenses to wine shops and increasing the prices of liquor, smuggling activities have been on the rise.


Liquor:

Two types of liquor are smuggled in Andhra Pradesh- Non-duty paid liquor (NDPL) and Duty paid (DPL). "The AP government's policy is that none shall carry more than 3 bottles. And over the years the government has been reducing the license of wine shops resulting in graduation reduction in consumption. Currently, licenses have been permitted to 4800 shops. The motto is to reduce the supply and increase the prices," Director Special Enforcement Bureau Ramakrishna told NewsMeter.

Modus Operandi

ID liquor or illegally distilled liquor involves a low economical way of preparing. It requires black jaggery and harmful chemicals. The majority of the offenders spot interior locations in the forest and islands to avoid police radar. They work in tandem with the villagers who often alert them whenever there is a raid.

The first layer of enemies for cops is the difficult terrain followed by the informant of the offenders. Many times, an exchange of fire took place between the police and distillers'. The cheap liquor is then smuggled into the town. These are sold at the borders of the state.

The AP government set up SEB by splitting the Excise and Prohibition and law and order police department. Over 70% of SEB's enforcement is against the smuggling of liquor and Ganja cultivation. Currently, the department has 2000-3000 personnel on its roll.

In order to curb habitual offenders, the SEB has streamlined the Excise and Prohibition Act. The punishment for smuggling banned substances is 8 years of imprisonment. The SEB has also zeroed down on illegal belt shops located in the bordering districts. "We contemplate selling it, however, there is no such direction as yet," the SEB director said.

Earlier Andhra Pradesh DGP Damodar Gautam Sawang told NewsMeter, "Our first step towards enforcement was setting up a Special Enforcement Bureau (SEB), headed by a senior rank officer. The bureau focuses on banned substances and liquor. Talking about statistics, in the last decade, over 5000 peddlers, smugglers, and consumers have been arrested and a quantity of 3 lakh ton Ganja was seized. Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy has directed the respective enforcement wings to come up with an operational plan specifically targeting Ganja cultivation and liquor smuggling".

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