Dance bars set to reopen as Mumbai police starts issuing licenses

With Mumbai police finally issuing licenses to a some dance bars, in adherence to Supreme Court order, dance bars are finally set to reopen in the city.

Around 150 licenses applications have been made, of which four bars -– Indiana at Tardeo, Natraj at Vidyavihar, Uma Palace at Mulund and Padma Palace at Bhandup finally got their license on Monday while about 15 others are expected to get their's on Tuesday. 100 others will get their licenses renewed by the month end.

Permit issued for Indiana dance bar at Tardeo
Permit issued for Indiana dance bar at Tardeo

The process of analysing the applications has been started although not all bars have been given licenses, confirmed Adarsh Shetty, president Indian Hotel and Restaurant Association (AHAR).

“We are very happy that bars will finally reopen and all those who got unemployed will finally be able to earn their livelihood. Four bars have already received the license and others are in the pipeline,” said Shetty.

The Supreme Court had cleared the decks for the issuance of dance bar licences to hotels and restaurants in Mumbai after directing the Maharashtra government to grant licences to dance bars by March 15. It had also quashed the state’s proposal to monitor activity inside the bars through live CCTV feeds.

The bar owners had moved the SC after Maharashtra Police imposed 24 new conditions on them before allowing them to open dance bars. The court asked the government to grant licences by mid-March after modifying seven of those conditions. In addition, the court also forbade CCTV monitoring of the performance area since it would be a violation of privacy. Cameras will only be allowed at the entry and exit points of the bars. The SC also clearly defined that only four performers can be allowed on stage at a time, while the rest can wait at the green room.

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