Bengaluru pubs fined for allegedly violating smoking rules

Three pubs and eateries in the central business district (CBD) of Bengaluru were slapped fines for allegedly violating rules related to smoking inside the restaurant premises on Sunday

The three establishments subjected to the scrutiny were Shiro, Skyye and Biere Club. BBMP officials inspected the pubs after they reportedly received complaints from the public. The violations were under Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act (COPTA) 2003 and other municipal laws. Meanwhile another pub, Farzi Cafe, was given a warning about the same. 

Both Shiro and Biere Club did not have demarctaed smoking zones and people were allowed to smoke and drink in the same place, which is a violation of the law, The Times of India quoted a senior BBMP official as saying. The two establishments were also told that their licenses will be temporarily suspended. While Shiro was fined Rs 15,000, the Biere Club was fined Rs 64,000 reports said

Officials further said the other two restaurants were found to have designated smoking zones but they did not comply with the stated guidelines. 

Speaking with TOI, BBMP Commissioner BH Anil Kumar said if establishments allow customers to smoke inside the restaurant, they have to provide a designated place for the same, with the permission of the BBMP officials. Otherwise, he said, the entire premises should be made a non-smoking zone.

TNM had earlier reported how in August 30, 2018 the BBMP had issued a public notice banning smoking inside all hotels, bars and pubs in the city. The BBMP had, however, stated that these establishments can have enclosed smoking zones and must obtain a no-objection certificate (NOC) for the same.

But more than a month after the notice was issued, BBMP officials said that only two bars had applied for the NOC so far. Instead, many restaurants and bars do not have a smoking zone and allowed customers to smoke inside the premises.

The BBMP’s Tobacco Control Programme had introduced the ban on smoking in hotels and bars as a part of its “tobacco-free” goal. BBMP officials said they aimed to make the city tobacco-free by 2030.

According to a Government of India notification issued in August 2018, any establishment, such as a pub, bar, hotel and restaurant that has a seating capacity of more than 30 members, can have a designated smoking zone and it is mandatory for them to get a no-objection certificate from the local civic body. In Bengaluru, the NOC is provided by the BBMP tobacco control cell.

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