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Call to regularise dhabas

M.K.Ananth

Namakkal: Police officials, social activists and heads of educational institutions say steps should be taken to regularise dhabas in the district. A senior police officer told The Hindu that there were only 27 dhabas in Namakkal last year and 10 more have come up this year.

The concentration of such eateries is along the State and national highways and near educational institutions, he said.

The highest concentration is in Tiruchengode Taluk (18), followed by Namakkal (7).

The officer says good hotels are situated only in Namakkal, Tiruchengode, Rasipuram, Paramathi and Pallipalayam.

According to the officer, the secluded individual cottages “hut-like structures covered with curtains on all sides” provide an ideal place for consumption of liquor and gambling. Most of them have been functioning as unauthorised bars.

These bars buy heavy stock of liquor from TASMAC outlets and sell at higher rates. This has not only caused many incidents of drunken driving on the busy highways but also led to health hazards due to the unclean environment and poor quality of food served in these dhabas, says social activist T. Matheshwaran of Tiruchengode.

Additional Superintendent of Police (Prohibition Enforcement Wing) T.P. Suresh Kumar, however, says that the misuse of dhabas as unauthorised bars and for other illegal activities has been dealt with severely.

“About 288 cases have been booked in May (158) and June (130) by PEW police against dhabas and roadside hotels that have been supplying liquor to its customers or permitting them to drink there,” he adds.

This is in addition to the 113 cases booked by the local police station in those months, the ADSP says.

“We have listed the dhabas and assigned a constable to check sale of liquor or consumption by customers he says adding that the policemen have been taken to task if they did not report such incidents.

Mr. Suresh also says that he could be contacted at 98421 47767 to report on the illegal activities in dhabas.

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