Bars flouting smoking zone rules to lose trade licence

Bars flouting smoking zone rules to lose trade licence

BBMP says approximately 50% of establishments in the city have flouted rules.

The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) will now cancel trade licences of all bars and restaurants with illegal smoking zones in the city. Any pub, restaurant or hotel which does not comply with the specific guidelines governing smoking zones will lose its trade licence.

“According to a Government of India notification, any establishment such as pub, bar, hotel and restaurant having a seating capacity of more than 30 can only have a designated smoking zone, and it is mandatory for them to get a no-objection certificate from the BBMP tobacco control cell,” said BBMP commissioner N Manjunath Prasad. “We will cancel the trade licence of establishments not adhering to the specifications.”

BBMP chief health officer Manoranjan Hegde said that approximately 50% of the establishments in the city have flouted the specifications. “We will issue a notification to them and if they do not remove smoking zones, we will cancel the trade licence,” he said.

The BBMP brought in this rule to reduce the ill-effects of passive smoking. Dr Vishal Rao, an oncologist emphasised the gravity of the problem. “Passive smoking has been one of the most neglected health hazards. If you test the blood of a passive smoker who has been in a smoking zone for half an hour, you can find nicotine in the blood,” said Dr Rao.

Meanwhile, the establishments are still awaiting a formal communication. “We have not received any formal notification. We will uphold the law and protect the interest of people,” said N Srinivas Gowda from Pecos, a popular bar.

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