Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Home minister shoots down 2AM shot

Home minister shoots down 2AM shot

VS Acharya says he has no idea of excise department's proposal to extend deadline for star hotels and restaurants

Srikanth Hunasavadi. Bangalore

Sorry, but there's going to be no extended deadlines for star hotels and restaurants. Karnataka home minister VS Acharya on Monday shot down the 2am deadline plan, saying that he has not received any proposal from the excise department.
"We have no plans to extend the deadline and it's mainly from the law and order point of view. If the excise department has put forth a proposal for extension of deadline, we will hear and we are open for discussion. We will explain our stand. But the issue was not discussed with me till now," Acharya said. "The chief minister(BS Yeddyurappa), too, is not interested in extending the deadline."
Excise minister MP Renukacharya, who is backing the extension, was, a week back, engaged in a bitter tussle with Bangalore police commissioner Shankar M Bidari over the issue.
Bidari, who initially opposed deadline extension, backed out by saying that the police department, which comes under the home department, would go by whatever decision the state government takes.
The police are worried that an extended deadline could lead to an increase in the crime rate.
The Karnataka Police Act (1963) states that the home department alone has powers to extend the existing bar timings. The act empowers the police commissioner to take a suitable decision on bar closure timings (including those in hotels and clubs) after consulting the home department.
Strict 11pm closure of bars was implemented from August 2008, a month after the serial blasts in Bangalore. It was then extended to midnight.

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