SDMC bans cross-gender massage at spa centres

Civic body frames new licence policy

Published - October 12, 2021 12:43 am IST - New Delhi

The South Delhi Municipal Corporation on Monday announced the implementation of a new licence policy for spas and massage centres falling under its jurisdiction.

Approved by Lieutenant-Governor Anil Baijal, the corporation’s press note stated that “cross-gender massages” will not be permitted and that male and female spa centres shall be in different sections”.

Plea in court

Previously, a plea challenging the Delhi government’s guidelines on banning cross-gender massage services was filed in the Delhi High Court.

The petitioner, Association of Wellness Ayurveda & Spa, said that cross-gender treatment has been “part of the traditional massage practices” and assuming prostitution to be only in the “heterosexual domain” is illogical.

“Permission will be granted in areas coming under the category of commercial, local commercial, notified commercial and mixed land use. In residential areas, new spa/massage centres will not be allowed,” the press note stated, adding that spas and massage centres will be allowed to operate “only between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.”.

Last month, the East Delhi Municipal Corporation had also banned cross-gender massage at spas under its jurisdiction.

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