SC show cause on regulation of dance restaurants

Kathmandu, November 8:

The Supreme Court today issued a show cause notice to the Ministry of Women, Children and Social Welfare, on the government’s delay in introducing legal provisions or laws to regulate cabin and dance restaurants and massage parlours.

Responding to a Public Interest Litigation (PIL), a single bench of justice Paramananda Jha directed the Ministry to furnish a written reply within 15 days.

Seeking a Supreme Court order to the government to promulgate a law or a legal provision in order to regulate the cabin and dance restaurants and massage parlours, advocate Prakash Mani Sharma had filed the petition on behalf of Pro Public, an NGO, yesterday.

Due to lack of of specific legal provisions, women and other workers employed by these parlours have been facing sexual and other types of exploitations, Sharma argued.

The petitioner had urged the Supreme Court to issue guidelines till the government promulgates specific legal provisions to stop sexual exploitation in such places. He also called on the government to protect the rights of the workers by enforcing the provisions of Labour Act 1991 and Regulation 993.

Accusing the dance restaurants, cabin restaurants and massage parlours of violating the Industrial Business Act 1992, the petitioner also sought the apex court order to the government to shut them if their operation is in contravention of the existing laws.

The petitioner also urged the Supreme Court to take the Indian Supreme Court’s precedent set in 1997 on the case of Vishaka and others vs State of Rajasthan and others. The Indian SC had set some ground for controlling control sexual harasment in public places in India.