Abid Hussain Barlaskar

Swiggy and Zomato to deliver alcohol at home, to start taking online orders in Jharkhand cities

Both Swiggy and Zomato will start online alcohol ordering and delivery in Ranchi. This will be followed by other cities of Jharkhand and states at a later stage.

Food tech platforms Swiggy and Zomato have confirmed that both the platforms are initiating online ordering and delivery of alcohol. Orders can be placed through the ‘Wine Shops’ category on the Swiggy app. The platform’s service went live in Ranchi today after obtaining necessary approvals from the Jharkhand government, with other major cities in the state launching within a week.

Swiggy is also in advanced stages of discussions with multiple state governments to provide support with online processing and home delivery of alcohol which the company can immediately enable by leveraging its existing technology and logistics infrastructure and nationwide presence.

A Zomato spokesperson confirmed to afaqs! that the platform will start deliveries in Ranchi today. Zomato’s service will be activated in seven other cities in Jharkhand over the next couple of days.

"With due permissions and licences in place, we are starting home delivery of alcohol in Jharkhand. We believe that a technology-enabled home delivery based solution can enable responsible consumption of alcohol as well as provide an option that’s safer and promotes social distancing,” the Zomato spokes person said.

Swiggy has introduced measures such as mandatory age verification and user authentication to complete deliveries. Customers can complete their instant age verification by uploading a picture of their valid government ID, followed by a selfie which the platform will use for authentication using an AI-powered system. All orders will carry a unique OTP which needs to be provided by the customer at the time of delivery. There is also a capping on the order quantity to ensure a customer does not order alcohol above the prescribed limit as per the state law.

Speaking about the introduction of the category, Anuj Rathi, VP - Products, Swiggy said, “Since the beginning of the pandemic, Swiggy has relentlessly worked to solve customer pain points and support local governments in every way possible. Taking advantage of our existing technology and infrastructure to enable hyperlocal deliveries, we have been working closely with the local authorities to support them with initiatives like expansion of grocery delivery and COVID-19 relief efforts. By enabling home delivery of alcohol in a safe and responsible manner, we can generate additional business for retail outlets while solving the problem of overcrowding, thereby promoting social distancing.”

Swiggy is partnering with authorised retailers after validating their license and other required documents as outlined by the state governments. Delivery partners and retailers have been virtually trained to facilitate smooth processing and fulfilment of orders.