The petitioners had contended that the BMC has no jurisdiction to implement a circular banning sale of hookahs in eateries and restaurants in view of the Cigarette and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of Advertising and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production, Supply and Distribution) Act 2003.
The judges also directed that the order passed by the BMC shall not be implemented for seven days.
The BMC has told the High Court that it will issue a show-cause notice to suburban restobars asking them why their hookah parlour services should not be closed down in the wake of a June 19 circular to put a ban on sale of hookahs in eateries and restaurants.
The court has now directed the petitioners to reply to the show-cause notice and in case the reasoned order passed by the corporation adversely affects the petitioners, they can move an appeal before the court.
The corporation had last week defended the decision to ban hookah parlours, stating that higher doses of nicotine can result in disability or death of a person. It also said that the younger generation, especially college students, are affected because of this.
An affidavit filed by deputy executive health officer Neera Kewalramani had stated that “nicotine can be consumed only in prescribed doses and not higher than that, if consumed in higher doses, it can also result in disability or death of a person.”
The court last month had asked the corporation whether there is any provision in law which bans hookah bars.
Kewalramani had stated that it is in view of these factors that the authorities have initiated drive to stop hookah services in premises with regard to license under section 394 of Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act as the most affected consumer are college students.
Advocate C U Singh appearing for the petitioner argued that the BMC circular seeks to encroach on legislative powers.
“They can’t have different guidelines for different people. There is some confusion regarding the wordings used in the order which we have to see,” said Rajuv Narula who appeared for Kosmic.