A Punjab and Haryana high court bench on Wednesday asked the UT administration to apprise the court whether there are any guidelines for running of discotheques in the city.
The direction from single judge bench of justice Rajan Gupta came following the amicus curiae in the case advocate Sumeet Goyal pointed out that there ought to be distinction between the conditions for opening bars and discs as the discs and additional security and amenities are needed for latter. Earlier, the UT administration had told the court that separate licences are not granted for opening discs and those with bar licences could have such a facility.
Later, the HC bench asked the UT to specify as to whether there are any guidelines in place for running discs and amicus curiae have also been asked to suggest measures to improve security at these places.
‘Bars can remain open till 1am as per policy’
During the hearing, UT counsel JS Toor told the HC bench that as per the excise policy, the bars could remain open till 1am. At this stage, it will not be appropriate for the UT to curtail the timings as licences have already been given. The bar owners could face financial losses and could seek same from the UT as all charges were levied as per the previous rules, Toor told the court.
The UT’s response came on a direction from the HC, whereby it has asked to submit whether a benchmark for all commercial establishments, including bars, could be fixed regarding their closing time.
The administration reply came in the proceedings into a firing incident reported in June at a Sector-8 discotheque. The HC had taken serious view of the firing incident and had sought various details on discotheques, observing that the court expected that the administration was conscious of the fact that the city could not be allowed to turn into haven for hooligans at night. The next hearing will take place on October 28.