A PIL was today moved in the Delhi High Court seeking closure of eateries which are running in contravention of municipal laws and without fire clearances in the posh Khan Market and Connaught Place areas of the city.
A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar issued notices to the Centre, Delhi government, police and the fire department seeking their response by April 25, the next date of hearing.
The New Delhi Municipal Council, in whose jurisdiction the eateries fall, the Delhi Development Authority and the Delhi Pollution Control Committee have also been asked to respond to the petition which claims that the eateries running from first floors and rooftops of the two markets pose a fire risk.
The plea also seeks doing away with the requirement of having a seating capacity of 50 or more for requiring a fire clearance.
The petitioner, Delhi resident Manjit Singh, has claimed these eateries have only one entry/exit stairway which is usually narrow and would be insufficient to evacuate customers in case of a fire.
The petitioner, represented by senior advocate Vivek Sood, also claimed that the lanes around these eateries are too narrow for being navigated by fire tenders or other emergency vehicles.
The plea has also alleged that liquor is being served in open areas of these eateries in violation of licence norms.
Apart from that, most of these eateries do not have oil and grease traps as required under the law, it has alleged.
( Source – PTI )