However, industry sources have pointed out that only BMC's nod is not enough and clearances from multiple government departments are also needed.
After Ranchi, food delivery platforms are one step closer to start delivering alcohol in Mumbai as well, thereby opening up a massive business opportunity for these players.
In a notification, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) said that alcohol shops can use e-commerce platforms to start home deliveries.
Emails sent to Swiggy and Zomato for a comment on the timeline did not elicit any response till the time of publishing this report.
BMC Commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal said: "Excluding the containment zones, liquor shops selling liquor in sealed bottles can be permitted to operate…effecting delivery of the permitted liquor to the home address of the customer."
Industry sources have pointed out that only BMC's nod is not enough. Delivery companies need clearances from multiple government departments like the excise department and others before starting the service.
"There are discussions happening at multiple levels. Multiple bodies need to give a go-ahead before this service can be started," said a top executive in a food delivery startup on condition of anonymity.
"We have already started our alcohol delivery services in Jharkhand and are in advance stages of discussions with other state governments. We have received the order in Mumbai and are analysing it for further action. We look forward to partnering with the liquor retail industry to enable safe and compliant delivery of alcoholic beverages in Mumbai," said a Zomato spokesperson.
At a time when food delivery orders are down by more than 20 percent across the country and many restaurants are shut because of the coronavirus-induced induced lockdown, alcohol sales could help these platforms push up order volumes and also utilise their delivery fleet.
Mumbai had stopped all liquor shops from operating since May 6 after massive queues starting breaking out outside these joints when they opened in May after more than a month. Since then people are ordering alcohol over phone, so some bit of home deliveries is happening but this could make the process organised for consumers.
Ranchi became the first city on May 21 where both Zomato and Swiggy started alcohol delivery through their respective applications. The platforms have said that they are in talks with multiple state governments to open this service which assumes importance at a time of social distancing across the nation.
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