The Gurgaon police continued its crackdown on pubs and hookah bars in the city as they raided a Hookah bar in Sector -14 and closed it down on Tuesday for functioning illegally for months. The manager of the pub was arrested.
Pooja Chowdhury,Drugs Control Officer,said,We raided the bar in the presence of a police team and found 25 juveniles smoking hookah as well as consuming nicotine in high quantity. The samples have been collected and sent to the Haryana Food and Drugs Authority office in Chandigarh. She added that the youngsters were not carrying their identity cards and were detained for questioning. They said they were not aware of a law that bans Hookah in bars, she said.
According to Satish Dagar,Investigating officer who was heading the team,the police received a PCR call from the Drug control officer and a team of 15 police officers reached the bar,Kasba,at 4:30 pm. It was a small bar,hidden in the basement,functioning stealthily. Large amounts of nicotine and five hookahs were seized from the bar. The manager,Prakashchand Verma,was arrested on the spot,while the parents of the 25 youngsters including girls were called and let off with a warning,he added.
Section 188 IPC has been lodged against the manager and owner,Rahul Yadav,who is on the run. He will soon be arrested,Dagar said.
The police along with drug control officers and excise officers have conducted 20-25 surprise checks on Hookah bars in the last four months and more than 65 raids on pubs serving liquor to under-age youngsters,functioning beyond midnight. Licenses of six pubs and bars who were habitual offenders were recommended for termination in 2013,of which two well-profile bars on MG road lost their license,said an excise officer.
In July 2011,a division bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court had banned the use of nicotine as an additive in any substance,including sheesha or hookah,served in lounges in Haryana,Punjab and Chandigarh.
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