Now, booze parties at most of the pubs in the Millennium City will stop at midnight as the Haryana excise department on Thursday refused to grant two-hour extension to bar owners for serving liquor.
However, bars operating from 4-5star hotels will be allowed to serve liquor past midnight.
Only 21 bars out of the total of 195 would serve liquor till 2am and these 21 bars will have to pay R5 lakh per year in addition to R6 lakh regular annual charges. The department has also decided not to renew the licence of three pubs in Sahara Mall, the epicenter of drunken brawl cases on the MG Road.
“The decision to not to allow two-hour extension after midnight to the bars has come following frequent drunken brawls in the pubs,” Aruna Singh, deputy excise and taxation commissioner (Gurgaon) said.
He said the Haryana excise and taxation commissioner, Anil Malik, has already issued a verbal order in this regard and written directives would be sent to the bar owners in a couple of days.
“I have formed a number of teams to raid bars/pubs operating after midnight. Those who had applied for two-hour extension would be refunded their fee,” Singh said.
Earlier, the city police had suggested that standalone pubs and bars should not be allowed to serve liquor after midnight as such places create nuisance for others.
Meanwhile, many pub owners said that they will protest against the decision.
Owners alleged that the department is acting against the notification on the Haryana Excise Policy 2013-14 that clearly has provisions for a two-hour extension for pubs and bars. They also targeted the Gurgaon police for failing to manage the law and order situation, as a result of which bars were suffering.
Vikram Rana, owner of Vapour Micro Beer breweries at the Mega City Mall on MG Road, said it was an injustice to bar owners and they were going to make a representation to the finance commissioner (excise) in Chandigarh soon.
“The 2013-14 excise policy clearly allows a two-hour extension to allow sale of liquor till 2am and there is no formal order banning the activity. The department has failed to produce any written directive, ” added Rana.