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Popular restaurants deserted after SC’s liquor ban takes effect in the city

Popular restaurants deserted after SC’s liquor ban takes effect in the city

Popular restaurants deserted after SC’s liquor ban takes effect in the city

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After the Supreme Court’s directive to ban liquor service and sale 500 meters from highways, many restaurants in Delhi and Gurugram looked deserted today. Especially Gurugram’s popular hangout spot, Cyber Hub, that usually sees hundreds of people hobnob on a lazy Sunday, saw major dip in customers visiting the eateries in the area.

The ban, that earlier applied to liquor vendors alongside highways in the country, now applies to pubs, hotels and restaurants too. The Supreme Court ruling came into effect on April 1. This has evoked mixed responses from the public and restaurateurs alike. While the restaurant owners and managers say they will respect the top court ruling, hundreds of workers are scared as they foresee their jobs slipping away. This obviously means loss and a bad business.

The move didn’t settle too well with Cyber hub regulars either. “One who has to drink would get liquor from anywhere… Government should rather make strict norms against drunken driving,” said Vikas Pandey, who works in a private company in Gurugram and was at Cyber Hub for an evening out.

Over 100 liquor vendors, and restaurant and hotel bars located within 500 metres of highways, have been shut down in the last two days following the directive to this effect.  Excise Department roam in the night to check any violation. Several outlets in the city have petitioned the excise department claiming they do not fall within 500m of highways. Sources in the department said they are “flooded” with such complaints from affected license holders.

On the other side of the argument, a survey suggests, nearly one life is lost every four seconds in drunk driving incidents on highways every day. So, it has become increasingly difficult for the government to come up with a long term solution that will please everyone.

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