Officials confess to lack of correct information on hotels and bars

Licence renewal process runs into trouble

High-level committee put in place to study issue

HYDERABAD: The Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) is yet to have complete data on the trade licences issued to hotels, restaurants, lodges, bars and others in the 12 municipalities even as its policy prevalent in the erstwhile MCH area comes under the High Court scanner.

Officials confessed that correct information on hotels and bars was not available since trade licence records have not been computerised in the suburbs. For the core area itself, GHMC has been grappling with the issue ever since the court had ordered it to act tough against hotels, bars and others not providing parking space and functioning from residential properties. After identifying 20-odd trades which cause traffic and sanitation problems, it had suspended automatic renewal of licences and had asked the businessmen to furnish no objection certificates from the police and town planning wing. In the meantime, about 20 per cent of establishments had already got their licences renewed.

The health and sanitation wing had put 6,700 others in abeyance. Licence renewal was to be applied for in the head office and report from the assistant medical and health officer concerned was to survey and report. But this ran into trouble when the head office had cleared close to 1,000 applications under controversial circumstances sans a survey report.

GHMC’s top boss C.V.S.K. Sarma put an end to all the processes and put in place a high level committee headed by the Additional Commissioner (Planning & Projects) K. Dhananjaya Reddy and consisting of Additional Commissioner (Health & Sanitation) R. Ram Mohana Rao, Chief Veterinary Officer P. Venkateswara Reddy, Chief Medical and Health Officer (CMOH), DCP (Traffic) to study the issue.

The panel is to submit a report after looking into the parking space, building usage and whether the business was under the bulk garbage system for all the 20 trades. Already, GHMC had issued closure notices to over 3,000 hotels and others for functioning illegally from buildings meant for residential purposes.

Task cut out

Considering the trouble it was going into renewing trade licences under stringent norms for the core area, GHMC has its task cut out when it looks beyond and into the suburbs which are witnessing no less growth.