The Excise department officials on Saturday night conducted raids on popular pubs and bar-cum-restaurants in plush areas in twin cities and arrested four persons, including two under-aged students.
Ten special teams comprising 50 personnel raided at least 15 pubs and bars at Begumpet, Banjara Hills, Jubilee Hills and Punjagutta for selling liquor to youngsters below 21 years.
The Managers of Extreme Sports Bar and Fusion9 -- Sandeep Antony and David, respectively, were arrested for serving liquor to them.
Two students aged between 19 and 20 were also taken to custody for consuming liquor even as some of the customers ran away after seeing officials in a few places.
The raids were consequent to information that pubs and bars were serving liquor to youngsters below 21 years and thus violating the rules. Officials pointed out that such inebriated students were indulging in rash and negligent driving leading to road accidents later in the night.
Excise Assistant Commissioner (Enforcement) A.V.V. Satyanarayana Murthy said notices were issued to the managements of pubs and bars in the city few weeks ago asking them to desist from serving liquor to teenagers but many had ignored the notices.
Excise Commissioner Vinod Kumar Agarwal took a serious note of the violations and directed officials to constitute special teams to conduct raids.
Decoy teams were first sent to the pubs to find out about the violations. “After getting confirmation from them, the raids were conducted,” Mr. Murthy said.
Cases under Section 36(1) (C) of the Excise Act were registered against the two managers, while students were charged with Section 34 (9) of the Excise Act.
They were later released on bail. Mr. Murthy said the department has decided to continue the raids to prevent teenagers from consuming liquor.