It does not make any sense in deploying two police personnel outside the restaurants and bars to ensure that lady waitresses are not employed for more that the specified time, there is a severe shortage of police personnel and this practise is not in public interest, the Bombay High Court said on Monday while hearing a petition filed by restaurant/bar owners from Thane opposing the move of police deployment.
A division bench of Justice N H Patil and Justice Anuja Prabhudesai said "Let us all be rational, if you post two policemen outside 36 restaurants then your loosing 72 policemen, they can be deployed at railway and bus stations or can crack some criminal case which is on the rise."
The bench was surprised with the police move and said "This move is sheer waste of time and talent of the policemen. They should be imaginative and should not be made to sit under a tree doing nothing."
A total of 36 petitions have been filed in the high court by restaurant and bar owners, one of the petitioners is Barkur Shetty, who owns the Prakash Hindu Hotel (Rukhmini Palace) in Thane, claiming that since November 2013, policemen have been deployed outside their business premises.
Advocate Veena Thadani appearing for the petition argued that "Their presence creates fear in our patrons and affects our business." She also argued that policemen are sitting from 1 pm to 1 am, this is not a police state that such impositions should be allowed.
Public Prosecutor S K Shinde opposed the plea by saying that "We have come across untoward incidents and the practise is adopted in public interest there has to be some regulation. However, the court said "Surprise checks can be allowed after 9.30 pm that will be in public interest. However, these are merely administrative duties and it can be resolved amicably."
The court has now directed the police to file their reply within two weeks and adjourned the hearing till then.