These establishments have been booked under IPC Section 294, and notices have been issued against several others.

27 Bengaluru establishments shut down for playing live music without licencePiotr Drabik via Wiki Commons / Image for representation
news Law Tuesday, June 12, 2018 - 08:37

Twenty-seven establishments in Bengaluru have been forced to down their shutters for allowing live music to be played on their premises without a licence, according to the Print. 

This, however, isn’t new. This crackdown came after a 2005 Karnataka High Court order was upheld by the Supreme Court in January this year. The Licensing and Controlling of Places of Public Entertainment (Bangalore City) Order of 2005 mandated restaurants to obtain a licence for live music performances.

These 27 establishments have been booked under Section 294 of the IPC and notices have been issued to several others. 

Speaking to the Print, Bengaluru Commissioner T Suneel Kumar said that music — recorded or live — at any place would be public entertainment. 

“All of them will have to apply for licences with us… It is important to understand that these regulations have been put for the safety and security of people,” the Commissioner told the Print. 

Why is it coming into effect after 13 years?

In 2005, the Karnataka Live Band Restaurants Association filed a plea against the Licensing and Controlling of Places of Public Entertainment (Bangalore City) Order of 2005, on the grounds that it violated Article 14 and Article 19(1)(g) of the Constitution — equality and the right to practice any profession or occupation.

In January this year, a Supreme Court Division Bench comprising Justices RK Agrawal and Abhay Manohar Sapre upheld the 2005 order, and said that since these performances are carried out in restaurants where the public have access and, therefore, in the larger public interest, "these performances have to be controlled, regulated and supervised.”

The apex court said that the order of 2005 was issued in view of the safety and morality of the people at large, and it "does not suffer from any legal infirmity and is therefore constitutional".

"Indeed, the order of 2005 has been issued only with a view to control, regulate and supervise these performances in restaurants. Since these performances are displayed in a restaurant where public has an access and, therefore, in the larger public interest, these performances have to be controlled, regulated and supervised by imposing reasonable restrictions in law under Clause (6) of Article 19(1)," it added.

When the Supreme Court upheld the 2005 order in January, commissioner T Suneel Kumar said: “Based on the safety and other conditions as per the order, if these are satisfied, then a licence will be issued. For those who don’t comply, their establishments will have to be shut.”

The Supreme Court upheld the order soon after the Kamala Mills tragedy in Mumbai in December 2017, when a major fire broke out in a pub, leading to the death of 14 people.

 

(With IANS inputs)

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