The Kamala Mills fire that claimed 14 lives was caused due to the cinders in hookah pots.
MUMBAI: Three months after a devastating fire at Kamala Mills compound killed 14 people, the Maharashtra government on Tuesday introduced a bill to ban hookah parlours in the state. Violators of the law will be punished with imprisonment for a term of one to three years and fine of Rs 50,000 to Rs 1 lakh.
The bill has been brought after it was found that there was no law to regulate or ban hookah parlours in the state.
It has been observed that hookah bars have mushroomed on a large scale across the state, particularly Mumbai, Thane, Navi Mumbai, Pune and Nagpur.
These bars are being run in public places as well as in restaurants. Minor children and college students are attracted to these hookah parlours.
The bill states: “At present, there is no law to take legal action against these bars. The government considers to include hookah bars with an amendment in Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition and Distribution) Act, 2003”.
The bill further mentions that: “No person shall, either on his own or on behalf of any other person, open or run any hookah bar in any place including the eating house”.
The bill also states that police will have power to seize any material or article used as a subject or means of hookah bar.
An official from the home department said that the act has been drafted based on the Gujarat act.
In 2017, Gujarat amended the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act, 2003 to ban hookah parlours in the state. Gujarat also has a complete ban on liquor. There are around 130 hookah parlours in Mumbai, which are facing opposition from a section of the society.