Could alcohol be delivered home online?

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Background

Recommendations of the Excise Department were submitted to the Ministry of Finance on 16.06.2021 with a draft methodology of ordering liquor online and it was approved by the Ministry of Finance on the same day.

These recommendations had to be approved by the National task force to address COVID-19. Although the above recommendations were submitted on 16.06.2021, the COVID-19 Task Force rejected the recommendations on 17.06.2021.

News in circulation

The Excise Department states that liquor could be delivered home online from supermarkets.

“The Ministry of Finance approves the recommendations made by the Excise Department to buy liquor online.”

Notes circulating on social media about the issue:
https://bit.ly/3xr7Zu8,

https://bit.ly/3gxjavx ,

https://bit.ly/3xtBHie,

https://bit.ly/3gwrzzo

Protest

Mr. Anuruddha Padeniya, President of the Government Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA) has made a statement to the media on 16.06.2021 that selling liquor online is not acceptable and he strongly condemned the measures prompted by the government to promote tobacco and alcohol.

Related link: https://bit.ly/3q46781

Fact-check

When inquired about the veracity of the above news, the Deputy Commissioner of Excise of the Excise Department Mr. Kapila Kumarasinghe said that although the Ministry of Finance had approved the recommendations for online liquor sales, the COVID-19 Task Force had rejected the relevant recommendations and that online liquor sale was illegal.

Conclusion

It is not possible to order liquor from supermarkets online.

Related link: https://bit.ly/2S4IpMq

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