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Porous borders: Liquor consignments slip into Capital

Orders have been placed and vehicles containing illegally procured liquor – mostly from Haryana – are slipping into Delhi Roads before the poll time security takes over.

In the past two weeks, the outer Delhi district police has itself intercepted several small trucks and tempos ferrying liquor consignments to the city. “There are as many as 30 metalled road crossing over from Delhi into Haryana in the outer district alone, apart from innumerable non-metalled roads open for trespassing. The shortage of staff because of Republic Day security, more so because of the US president’s visit, has further aggravated the challenge in checking such consignments,” said Vikramjit Singh, DCP (Outer).

The consignments include ‘seasonal favourites’ like Royal Class, 999 and 24 carat – priced between Rs 85 to Rs 100 for a 750 ml bottle in the black market. These have been old allurements for JJ cluster voters. These are followed by popular brands like Episode and Party Special, priced between Rs 170 and Rs 200 for a 750 ml bottle in the black market. Then come other brands like Royal Stag, Officer’s Choice, Imperial Blue and McDowells No 1, priced between Rs 250 and Rs 300 for a 750 ml bottle in black market, a source informed.

Whiskeys from the Episode group and Royal Stag group are meant to win over voters in unauthorised and resettlement colonies.  Meanwhile for the semi-posh vote-bank, Blender’s Pride -- priced between Rs 400 and Rs 500 for a 750 ml bottle in the black market-- is the preferred choice. “While for the seasonal favourites the demand is maximum for 750 ml bottles, the others settle for 375 ml bottles,” said the source.

The source further said that certain zones may have different brand preferences. For instance, parties in West Delhi have an affinity for Bonny and Binny – both priced between Rs 120 and Rs 150 in black market. “This election season Binny has actually run out-of-stock,” the source added.

According to police sources, operations to crack illicit liquor business are mostly based on human-intelligence and there is input about movement of large consignments between January 27 and February 7 (voting day). Security at the borders will be heightened in this period.
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