Hotels refuse to step up to the plate

Hotels refuse to step up to the plate

Rate wars

Hotels refuse to step up to the plate

The Hoteliers’ Association argues that the ‘Thhaali’ cannot be offered at less than Rs. 25 a plate, lest they suffer monetary loss.

For the first time in the history of Dasara festival, the government and district administration made an unusual request to hotels - that they serve meals Rs. 15, a demand made by a cross section of people. District-In-Charge Minister S Sureshkumar had announced that he was negotiating with the city hoteliers for meals at Rs. 10.

When the response was negative from hoteliers, Suresh Kumar promised he would convince the restauranteurs to charge not more Rs 15 per meal. But the eateries want at least Rs. 10 more for a wholesome meal.

Mysore Hoteliers’ Association President Rajendra told Deccan Herald that “it is not a joke” to give lunch or dinner at Rs. 15 at a time of when food commodities’ prices were galloping. At the rate fixed by the district administration, it is not possible to have more than sambar rice, curd rice and pickle in a plate.

After much persuasion, the association members have agreed to include in the ‘Dasara Thhaali’  two chapatis, kurma, vegetable pallya, vangi bath or bisibele bath, rice, sambar, rasam, papad, pickle and a sweetmeat at Rs 25, Rajendra said.

Normally, Rs 25 does not fetch that much variety of offering in a plate. But, the association wants to offer the food bouquet both to satisfy the district admnistration, and to attract clientele, while hoping to make a profit on the turnover during the festival. Of course, the rate does not apply to three- or five-star restaurants.

Rajendra said restaurants were holding the price line even as rates of all commodities had risen. The price of rice, tur dal, edible oil and other commodities have doubled in the last one year. Despite the steep hike, hotels had not raised the rates of eatables.

“Our idea is to give a decent lunch or dinner at 40-50 selected restaurants in the city at Rs 25 per meal on all 10 Dasara days. Anything below that rate is not at all acceptable to our members. I think any tourist who visit the city during Dasara would not mind spending Rs 25 on a lunch or dinner,” Rajendra said.