In a major push to the hotel and restaurant industries, the Delhi govt on Wednesday allowed all restaurants in the national capital to operate 24 hours of the day, the Indian Express reported. Before this decision comes into force, the restaurants and hotels are allowed to operate between 7 AM in the morning to 11 PM in the night. Additionally, the restaurants which have the license to offer liquor to the customers had to pull down their shutters by 1 AM. With the latest decision, there will be no distinction between the restaurants that sell liquor or not, the government said.
The decision which was taken at a meeting between Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal and the National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) will also do away the requirement of a host of licenses that hotels had to procure from different authorities to operate in the city. The government later in a statement said that the decision was taken on the request made by the restaurateurs. It also added that it would be incumbent on all restaurants to ensure that the health and security of all staff members is taken care of. The move, the statement added, would help the hotel industry generate more employment.
It was also decided in the meeting that hotels won’t need to procure health trade licenses which were issued by the Municipal Corporations. Members of the industry were assured by the govt that the requirement of the health trade license should be abolished within a period of 10 days. The decision was taken after the restaurant body pointed out that Food Safety and Standard Authority of India (FSSAI) already issued licenses for food and safety hygiene standards. In a similar measure, the government said that the restaurants will no longer need to get a license from the Tourism industry. To the question of the hotel industry being one of the rare industries in the retail sector which needed to get a license from the Police department, Delhi CM said that the government will take a decision on the matter soon and informed that the excise department will review its policy of hiking the hotel license fee by 10 percent every year.
The report quoted the CM as saying that the hotel industry provides employment to lakhs of people and the government would take steps to remove the unnecessary hassles for smooth running and the betterment of the industry.