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GURGAON-9 MG Road clubs face closure, cancellation of liquor lice

COURTESY THE HINDUSTAN TIMES JULY 22

Leena Dhankhar leena.dhankhar@hindustantimes.com
9 MG Road clubs face closure, cancellation of liquor licence
MIDNIGHT RAID Cops seize clubs’ records on finding discrepancies in details of patrons, club dancers

This is last warning for these violators. If they will not adhere to the guidelines, they will be tried under Sec 188 of the IPC making them liable for imprisonment. MUHAMMAD AKIL, police commissioner, Gurugram

GURUGRAM: The police, on Sunday, revoked the no-objection certificates (NOC) of nine night clubs on MG Road and wrote to the deputy commissioner of Gurugram and the deputy excise and taxation commissioner to cancel their liquor licence. The action comes after the police, in a post-midnight raid on the intervening night of Saturday and Sunday, seized records of these clubs as they found discrepancies in the list of patrons and club dancers visiting these establishments.

The letter, a copy of which is with the HT, states that these nine clubs were found violating all the 10 points decided by the committee and that action must to be taken against them.

Police commissioner Muhammad Akil said that these clubs were not maintaining complete records of club dancers and patrons—such as their name, age, government ID proof, address and phone number—to mislead the police and this was tantamount to violation of the Punjab and Haryana High Court’s December 21 order.

“Police teams found that the club staff was not maintaining record and there were hardly any entries of the patrons as well. They had not checked if those in the club were of legal drinking age or not,” Akil said.

“Club dancers were openly soliciting men in the corridor and were forcing themselves on patrons. The clubs were operating after the midnight deadline and were not taking identity cards of the club dancers,” ACP (DLF) Karan Goel said.

The police formed three teams and took action after receiving multiple complaints of “illegal activities” from residents of that area and night club patrons over the past few months.

The police said that MG Road club owners, despite repeated reminders and meetings, were not adhering to the 10-point guidelines set forth by the district administration in January.

The police said they have sent notices to these club owners and have requested the district commissioner to hold a meeting with all stakeholders in the coming week. “This is the last warning for these violators, if they will not adhere to the guidelines, we will

take strict action against them and they will be tried under Section 188 of the Indian Penal Code making them liable for imprisonment,” the top cop said.

In December last year, the High Court had directed the formation of a three-member committee—comprising the deputy commissioner of city administration, commissioner of police and an excise official—to prepare guidelines for clubs on MG Road.

The order was given in response to a petition by club owners who had sought a stay on the revocation of NOCS, mandatory for running the clubs, and the repeated raids by the police. The court had also allowed the Gurugram police to conduct random inspection of clubs to maintain law and order and ensure no illegal activity takes place on the 2.5-km-long stretch on MG Road, popularly called the Mall Mile.

On Sunday, Akil said the committee had, in December, directed that each mall must build a separate entry and exit for club-goers, ban smoking inside clubs except a designated area, ensure these establishments are well-lit and that they install night-vision CCTV cameras inside and outside the clubs. “However, most of the clubs were found to be violating these norms,” he said

The need to form these guidelines arose after the police, on July 29, 2018, withdrew NOCS issued to 10 out of 15 nightclubs along the Mall Mile as residents complained of open solicitation on the stretch. The entrepreneurs then took the matter to the High Court, which stayed the closure, but directed the police to submit suggestions to check immoral activities and dismissed the club owners’ petition challenging police action. The court also allowed the Gurugram police to conduct random inspection of clubs to maintain law and order

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