SC gives state 2 weeks to act on dance bar licences
NEW DELHI/MUMBAI: The Supreme Court on Thursday gave the Maharashtra government two weeks to decide on the applications for licences to run dance bars in Mumbai. The SC pulled up the state for not complying with its October order, in which it had stayed the operation of provision of the Maharashtra Police Act, which prohibited dance performances at eating places, beer bars and restaurants.
The order had paved the way for re-opening of the dance bars, which were forced to shut shop about a decade ago. More than 75,000 women were employed in Maharashtra’s 2,500 dance bars, which were also a source of livelihood for 1.5 lakh other people, including cooks and waiters.
On Thursday, a bench headed by justice Dipak Misra expressed unhappiness when the counsel for the Indian Hotel and Restaurant Association (IHRA) told the court that the state government had not acted on any of the requests put forth by various restaurants and hotels.
The Maharashtra government counsel, senior advocate Harish Salve, assured the court that its directive would be “respected and adhered to”.
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