The Maharashtra government will meet on April 30 to review the current 20 percent water supply to breweries and distilleries in Aurangabad amid growing clamour to stop supply altogether in view of the water crisis in the region. The city has 11 liquor-manufacturing units.
Mint quoted a senior water works department official as saying a proposal to stop water supply to the units is being considered by the state government.
The 20 percent cut was imposed last Saturday by the Devendra Fadnavis government, whose alliance partner Shiv Sena has insisted on stopping water supply to the 11 units in a city that is also referred to as the "beer capital of Maharashtra".
SABMiller India and Carlsberg India have two units each in Aurangabad. Other companies such as United Breweries (makers of Kingfisher beer) and Heineken also have their units in the city.
Asia Pacific Breweries (Aurangabad) Ltd operates as a subsidiary of Heineken International BV.
Breweries and distilleries are located in the Waliunj industrial estate of Aurangabad and produce over 180 million litres of beer annually, according to the Hindu.
The 20 percent cut was the outcome of Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray demanding it while speaking at a function in the city on Saturday. "It is essential for the state government to accord priority to water over liquor," he had said.
Beer sales in India rose to 280 million cases (with 12 bottles in each case) in 2014-15, up from 270 million cases in the previous year.
"In the backdrop of an industry that grew at about 7 percent, our company has recorded an overall growth of 7 percent, accumulating volumes of 147 million cases, accounting for 51 percent of the total market," according to the 2014-15 annual report of United Breweries, which makes Kingfisher beer.