The Bombay High Court on Thursday directed the Maharashtra government to seek suggestions from multiplexes’ associations, and take a stand on permitting cinema goers to carry their own food items inside theatres. A bench of Justices R M Borde and Rajesh Ketkar directed the state Home department to also consider the suggestions already submitted by the petitioners seeking that people should be permitted to carry outside food to theatres.
The bench was hearing a public interest litigation filed by city resident Jainendra Baxi through his lawyer Aditya Pratap. The plea claimed that there was no legal or statutory provision prohibiting one from carrying personal food articles or water inside movie theatres.
Pratap also told the court that the Maharashtra Cinemas (Regulation) Rules prohibit hawking and selling food inside theatres and auditoriums. In compliance with the court’s order, he then submitted a list of suggestions, such as issuing licences to theatres with a mandatory clause directing them against banning any outside food or water.
The FICCI Multiplex Owners’ Association, a national association of cinema theatre owners, however, approached the court today seeking that it be allowed to intervene in the case since the rights of the multiplex owners were being affected by the relief sought by the petitioner.
The state government told the court that it was willing to consider the suggestions made by all parties and take a decision accordingly, and sought two weeks time for it.