GANGTOK, June 15 � In August 2010, Sikkim became the eleventh State in India, after neighbouring Meghalaya to make holograms mandatory on liquor bottles sold in the State, informed M K Pradhan, Commissioner Excise.
The Excise Commissioner has hopes that it would help increase Excise revenue from Rs 89 crore in 2009-10 to Rs 110 crore in the next fiscal. Pradhan added that according to the Hologram Manufacturers� Association of India (HOMAI), soon after introducing holograms, the States in India have seen an average 30 per cent increase in Excise revenue collection on liquor.
�Each bottle has a unique number that is embedded in the hologram design, making it easy for Excise collectors to account for every bottle and thereby prevent leaks. Since hologram costs are often passed on to distillers and dealers, the introduction are usually met with stiff resistance�, added Pradhan.
A hologram label costs a mere 30-40 paise. If stuck on bottles, it can help save crores of rupees in liquor revenue that would have otherwise been evaded, say manufacturers of hologram labels, a fact agreed upon by State Excise department.
On being asked whether Sikkim liquor has become dearer after the hologram has been imposed, Pradhan denied by saying that compared to other States it is still working out to be cheaper.