New Delhi, May 7 : To ensure social distancing and to stop overcrowding at liquor shops, the Delhi government on Thursday launched an e-token service with a time slot for people to buy alcohol at any nearby store. However, the website crashed within few hours of its launch.
The Delhi government said in a statement that it took this decision to encourage people to avoid long queues by applying for an e-token.
“Any person can apply for an e-token through the link https://www.qtoken.in. While applying, the name and phone number of the applicant will be required and the e-coupon will be sent at the registered mobile number. Through that e-token, the person will be allowed to buy liquor from the nearby shops,” the statement said.
In the third phase of the lockdown, the Central government has given some relaxations which allow standalone liquor shops to open.
Following the guidelines of the Central government, the Delhi government had given permission to open about 200 shops across the national capital from Monday onwards. However, due to overcrowding and long queues in some areas, only 50 shops could be kept open.
“In order to curb violations of social distancing norms, crowding and law and order issues during the sale of liquor in the city, the Delhi government has decided to introduce the e-token system,” the statement said.
When checked, the website was not working, to which the government responded by saying “there’s heavy rush currently, it will be up soon”.
However, even after two hours, the scenario was the same.
The Delhi government took the decision to issue e-tokens as the liquor stores witnessed huge rush after they reopened and people were found flouting social distancing norms.
Even after the government imposed a ‘Special Corona fee’ on liquor — which hiked prices by a whopping 70 per cent — long queues continued at the shops.