When young party revellers in Malad, Mumbai, were burning up the dance floors last week, little did they know those sexy moves would land them in trouble with the cops. The police, who were on a round to check if clubs had the necessary music licenses, also thought that those who indulged in ‘indecent dancing’ deserved to be slapped with a heavy fine of Rs 1200 each. Delhi club owners and cops think that was a tad too much.
“There is nothing wrong in expressing love while you are grooving to the music, and we will never interfere in such cases. But if it comes to ripping each other’s clothes, we’ll immediately take care of the situation,” says Kashif Farooq of Urban Pind in GK-I.
“We’ve never had to kick anyone out due to their dirty moves yet, and if such a situation were to arise, we’d take action but not fine our guests,” says Alok Aggarwal, of Cibo and Veda.
Other nightclubs, too, say warnings are a better way and that the cops should stay out. Rahil Bhasin of The Den in Gurgaon says, “If civil limits are crossed, our bouncers handle the situation. We will never let the cops fine or charge our guests, as they are our responsibility.”
“Sometimes, guests do get involved in aggressive dance movements, but we politely tell them to watch their actions,” says Shiv Karan Singh of Smokehouse Grill.”
Deepali Narula of F Bar & Lounge says guests are asked to leave if they “indulge in undesirable activities”.
City cops, too, say they will step in only if a specific complaint is made. “The police will take action on a complaint by a person who is affected by the obscenity or vulgarity such as an improper gestures, which is against the law whether it is at a nightclub or any public place,” says Chhaya Sharma, DCP South.
What happened in Mumbai
Last Saturday, the Mumbai police detained 77 people in a nightclub in Malad for violating licensing conditions, and later decided to fine 31 guests for ‘objectionable’ dancing. Out of the offenders, who were fined Rs 1200 each, 10 were girls. The news of the raid resulted in a protest group, ‘Stop moral policing’ on social networking site Facebook. The group demands that the authorities stop “defining indecency”.