The Maharashtra government, which banned dance bars in 2005 in the name of saving Indian culture, failed to see the ill-effects of its decision. The government perhaps feared that the bars were not following the rules and were being patronised by unwanted elements. I hope the Supreme Court verdict, striking down the government’s ban, will be followed in letter and in spirit.

R. Vikas,

Nalgonda

No doubt, bar dancers had a tough time eking out a living after the Maharashtra government’s ban on their profession in 2005. But for many women, it was a lifetime opportunity to upgrade their status. The ban taught at least some of them that a world of opportunities exists outside their bars.

S. Roopa Sharma,

Thiruvananthapuram

That the Maharashtra government did not consider the pros and cons of its decision is unfortunate. By banning bar dance, it deprived 75,000 women of their livelihood. Many of them took to prostitution as they had no other choice. Bars should be allowed to function. Strict guidelines should be put in place to ensure that brawls and other untoward incidents do not take place.

Nemani Vivekananda Rao,

Hyderabad

Even in a democracy, might is right. We see different sets of rules being applied to different classes. People belonging to the lower strata are nabbed for gambling while the elite are allowed to gamble in clubs.

Justice Altamas Kabir was right in saying that the cure (of banning dance bars) was worse than the disease.

Azhar A. Khan,

Lucknow

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