South Delhi Municipal Corporation House on Thursday witnessed a ruckus during its proceeding as Congress councillors protested the AAP government's new excise policy even as the mayor issued an order to check compliance of norms at liquor vends in residential areas.
Congress councillors Abhishek Dutt, Ved Pal and others had empty bottles stringed together around their neck or on their shoulders to register their opposition to the new excise policy, which they alleged will have a bad influence on society.
Dutt and Pal also climbed on the seats and raised slogans against the AAP government's policy. Some even trooped to the Well of the House.
Councillors of the ruling party in the BJP-led SDMC House also raised slogans against the policy.
South Delhi Mayor Mukesh Suryan later said, the BJP is also against the new excise policy, and "through the House, I have issued an order to check compliance of trade licence and other norms, like building bye-laws, at vends located in residential areas. If any violation is found, then that particular vend will be sealed".
Under the new policy, which has already come into effect, the liquor business in Delhi is handled entirely by private players. As many as 849 swanky mall-like liquor vends with walk-in facilities where people can pick their choice of liquor were to be opened from Wednesday to offer people a better alcohol-buying experience.
Meanwhile, several AAP councillors protested in the House by holding placards alleging that contractors have not been paid for by the civic body in the last couple of years. The banner also read 'Anischit hartal' (indefinite strike).
On Tuesday, ruckus had prevailed in the BJP-led NDMC House as well, when members of the ruling party and opposition AAP allegedly engaged in a bitter exchange of words during the proceedings over the new excise policy.
A member of the BJP and an AAP lawmaker had also allegedly engaged in a scuffle, after which the House was adjourned by the mayor. North Delhi Mayor Raja Iqbal Singh on Wednesday told reporters that he will raise the matter with the Lieutenant Governor of Delhi.
During the SDMC House proceedings on Thursday, a few proposals related to biogas plant, and other civic issues were cleared, the mayor said. Also, the extension of tenure of "an additional commissioner" has been "put on hold".
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