The Supreme Court has today asked the Maharashtra government to issue licences for the dance bars in the state, after rejecting certain conditions like providing live CCTV footage to police on performances. A bench comprising justices Dipak Misra and Shiva Kirti Singh gave three days to dance bar owners to comply with the modified conditions.
“We are inclined to modify the conditions of installation of CCTV cameras and providing the live footage to the police. We direct that the CCTV cameras shall be installed at the entrance only and not at the restaurant or performance areas. We direct the respondent (Maharashtra government) to grant the licences within ten days hence, if they comply with modified conditions. The modified conditions shall be complied within three days from today,” the bench said.
The court also warned the authorities against deviating from the given directions and asked them to ensure strict compliance with the modified conditions. It, however, clarified that modified conditions are interim in nature and would be subject to final outcome of the main petition challenging the amendments in the law governing dance bars in the state.
When Additional Solicitor General Pinky Anand, appearing for Maharashtra government, argued that CCTV cameras needs to be installed in performance areas as well as in restaurants for the safety of bar dancers and to prevent untoward incidents, the bench observed that Maharashtra police can deploy its personnel over there but no CCTV cameras can be allowed in the performance areas.