HC seeks Delhi govt stand on pleas challenging levy of 70 pc special corona fee on liquor

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Friday sought the response of the AAP government on several pleas challenging the levy of 70 per cent "special corona fee'' on the MRP of all liquor brands in the national capital.

A bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice C Hari Shankar issued a notice to the Delhi government and sought its response, by May 29, to the petitions which seek setting aside of the May 4 notification imposing the levy.

While issuing the notice, the court declined to grant any interim stay on the notification for now and decided to wait for Delhi government's reply, one of the petitioners, Lalit Valecha, said.

Delhi government standing counsel Ramesh Singh accepted the notice on behalf of the administration and said a detailed reply would be filed, indicating the levy was valid.

The Delhi government imposed the "special corona fee'' on alcohol, a day after allowing re-opening of 150 state-run liquor vends in the city from May 3.

Valecha, a lawyer, has contended in his petition that the "special corona fee'' is in excess of what has been authorised by law and accordingly it is being collected arbitrarily.

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