Central and State Governments are taking steps to ensure supply of essential items during the lockdown to combat COVID-19 or Novel Coronavirus. In order to prevent spread of coronavirus, hand sanitizers are used by public, health workers, hospitals etc. Demand of sanitizers is increasing day by day due to COVID-19 and in order to maintain demand and supply balance, State Government authorities including Excise Commissioners, Cane Commissioners, Drug Controllers as well as District Collectors of various states have been advised to remove any bottlenecks in supply of ethanol/ENA to manufacturers of hand sanitizers and to give permissions /licenses to the applicants including distilleries who intend to manufacture hand sanitizers. Distilleries/ Sugar mills which can produce hand sanitizers in bulk have also been motivated to manufacture hand sanitizers. These manufacturers have also been asked to work in three shifts to maximize their output.
About 45 distilleries and 564 other manufacturers have been granted permission to produce hand sanitizers; more than 55 distilleries are likely to be given permission in one or two days; and many more are being motivated to produce sanitizers in this scenario. Most of them have commenced production and others are likely to commence production in a week’s time; thus there will be sufficient supply of hand sanitizers for the consumers and hospitals.
In order to ensure that hand sanitizers are made available to general public and hospitals at a reasonable price, Government has also fixed the Maximum Retail Price of sanitizers. The retail prices of hand sanitizers shall not be more than Rs 100 per bottle of 200ml; the prices of other quantities of hand sanitizers shall be fixed in the proportion of these prices.