Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah presented his government’s 6th budget on Friday, 16 February, at Vidhan Soudha in Bengaluru.

In his last budget before the state heads to polls, Siddaramaiah released a series of sops for the people of Karnataka but didn’t fail to add taxes on some items, especially liquor.

Siddaramaiah increased the excise duty on liquor in the state to 8 per cent. According to the CM, the excise department would be achieving the target of Rs 18,750 cores fixed for 2018-19 financial year.

The increase in the excise duty of liquor was also done last year when it was brought to 21 per cent from 18 per cent. The VAT of 5.5 per cent on beer, wine and hard liquors was, however, abolished.

According to the CM, the Supreme Court order on location of liquor shops on highways was implemented affecting excise licences. Following renewal of the licenses, the Karnataka government expects to earn Rs 17,600 crore.

Karnataka’s decision to raise excise duty brought the shares of liquor companies down at the stock market.

The total size of the Karnataka Budget 2018 comes to around Rs 2,09,181 crore, which is Rs 22,620 crore, or 12.12 per cent, more than that of 2017.

The 69-year-old Siddaramaiah was presenting his record 13th state budget and his sixth as Chief Minister.