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EC nod to draw of lots for liquor vends in Punjab 

Chandigarh: The Election Commission has approved the draw of lots for the allotment of liquor vends in Punjab for the financial year 2019-2020.

Confirming the development, Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Dr S Karuna Raju said: “The communication from the EC has come in response to a clarification sought by our office as to whether the auction can be conducted while the election process was under progress. We were getting repeated questions on the issue of the allotment of vends from different quarters. The state government has been informed that it can now go ahead with the allotment of vends.”

Official sources said more than 71,000 applications had been received for about 5,750 vends till March 16 which was the last date to apply for vends for the next financial year.

EC secretary Rahul Sharma has clarified that the draw of lots will be done by government officials only. The CEO had sought the clarification from the EC on two earlier occasions on March 12 and March 18.

The department this time has collected approximately Rs 215 crore as the application money for the allotment of vends. The draw of lots will now be held in all districts under the observation of officials of the Excise and Taxation Department.

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