Pune: Chandrakant Patil suggests 7 ‘dry’ days to discuss bar rules

Maharashtra Cabinet Minister Chandrakant Patil on Wednesday suggested shutting down pubs and bars in the city for about a week. During this time, he said citizens should come together and make rules for these establishments, according to PTI.

He was responding to queries about the Pune Bar case on the sidelines of an event to mark International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, observed every year on June 26.

Pubs and bars in the state’s second largest city came into the spotlight after a viral video emerged, allegedly from Liquid Leisure Lounge or L3 on Ferguson College Road. It showed some youths with a drug-like substance.

According to a PTI report, the police said the bar was open till 5 am on Sunday and liquor was being sold beyond the stipulated time limit. Bars and pubs in Pune are allowed to remain open till 1.30 am.

Patil said the drug menace has increased in Pune and it has become a matter of concern, but it would not be appropriate to present an image that the entire city has been ruined because of it.

The BJP leader said the administration must take strict steps to curb this challenge as a preventive measure and not after a few incidents.

He said that if a vigilance squad is being formed to deal with this threat, then citizens should also be included in it.

Patil sighed. “All Puneites should think about keeping pubs and bars closed for at least three days or seven days, and everyone should come together on one platform and make rules for the timings of these establishments,” said Patil, according to a PTI report.

He said ‘Clear Dry Day’ should be observed for seven days and a rule book should be prepared besides efforts being made for its effective implementation, PTI reported.

He said, “These establishments are not grocery shops, so keep them closed for seven days.”

According to a PTI report, Patil said his Higher and Technical Education department was considering whether the post of an additional counsellor could be created in each college to provide “proper guidance” to students.

He said the Maharashtra Legislature session will begin in Mumbai on June 27 and this ‘hot’ issue will be discussed there.

According to a PTI report, the police have so far arrested 16 people in connection with the suspected drug use in L3.

(With inputs from PTI)