After raiding popular nightclubs such as Club Escape in Andheri and Royalty in Bandra, police raided another lounge, Shiro, in Worli at closing time, around 1.15am, on Saturday night. Police said that the lounge did not have the required licences.
None of the guests were frisked or asked to show their drinking permits. Instead, they were made to wait in long queues at the lounge till 3.30am while the police took down their names and addresses.
The police intend to make these guests witnesses in court, if the need arises, said Vasant Dhoble, assistant commissioner of police (social service branch), who conducted the raid.
More than 400 guests were present at the lounge at the time of the raid, violating the overcrowding law, added Dhoble.
According to the law, only 78 people are allowed at a 500 sq feet establishment and 166 people at a 1,000 sq feet establishment.
The guests will be made witnesses to prove that the place was overcrowded.
Guests had no idea why their details were being taken down.
“I heard someone say that the police may call to ask us till what time Shiro usually stays open. No one asked for permits or frisked us. I don’t get why everyone was made to suffocate in that room till 3.30am. This is so unfair. What is the city coming to,” said Jay Ruparel 28, a travel consultant.
There have been a slew of police raids at city nightclubs in the recent past. Popular bars such as Club Escape in Andheri and Royalty in Bandra were raided last month.
“I checked their (the lounge’s) documents; and they did not have the licence needed to function as a discotheque. They had the licence to conduct an orchestra,” said Dhoble.
Shiro spokesperson was unavailable for comment as he was out of the country.
Youngsters are upset about a spoiled Saturday night.
“The two queues — one for women, being managed by a female constable, and one for men — were moving really slowly. I was only able to leave around 3.30am, and I don’t even drink alcohol,” said Sachin Kotre, 28, an ad film director, who went to Shiro’s for a friend’s birthday party.