At least nine restaurants in Central Delhi’s Connaught Place may lose their licence for violation of fire safety norms, with the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) issuing show-cause notices to them. The move comes following a fire in a Mumbai pub on December 29 that claimed 14 lives, sparking off safety concerns at eateries and restaurants in the national capital, as just 400 of them have an no objection certificate (NOC) from the Delhi Fire Service. “We had conducted inspection of all restaurants in Connaught Place and identified nine of them which have been violating fire safety norms. “Show cause notices have been issued to them and they may lose their licence if norms are not complied with,” a senior NDMC official told PTI. The official, however, did not reveal the names of the restaurants, saying, “We are not making their names public at this stage, till we receive their replies.” The civic body had last week warned traders associations in its area to ensure that restaurants operating in its area abide by trade licence conditions, fire safety norms and comply with sitting capacity conditions or face cancellation of their permits and sealing of their premises.
“All trade associations were requested to kindly impress upon their members/restaurants operating in respective areas to strictly abide by trade license conditions. There should not be any laxity on the fire safety measures and sitting capacity sanctioned in each restaurant is strictly complied with,” the official said. The two major markets in NDMC area which are flooded with restaurants are Khan Market and Connaught Place. According to norms, eateries with a seating capacity of less than 50 do not need an NOC from police and fire departments.