CCTVs in bars are for dancers’ security, Maharashtra tells SC

Facing flak from the >Supreme Court over its decision to have CCTV surveillance at dance bars, the Maharashtra government said the cameras would help maintain the dignity of the dancers and provide them with a sense of security.

“They are from the poor strata of society. Most of the girls or artists have entered the profession not out of choice but compulsion.

“The State being concerned with the dignity and exploitation of such poor uneducated/less educated bar girls, installing the CCTV cameras and the live feed of the same to the police control room will help maintain the dignity of such girls and prevent their exploitation,” the State government told the Supreme Court in an affidavit filed on Tuesday.

The State explained that its insistence on having CCTV cameras installed was on the basis of the feedback given by restaurateurs and bar owners on how electronic surveillance helped to reduce crime on the premises.

It referred to studies by NGOs such as Prayas, Rambhau Mhalgi Prabodhini and Research Centre for Women’s Studies, SNDT University, Mumbai, and Forum Against Oppression of Women, to show that dancers, who are aged between 18 and 30 years, were vulnerable.

CCTV cameras and the live feed sent to the police control room would serve the purposes of transparency and better policing, the State said.

Noting that a restaurant was a public place as per the provisions of the Maharashtra Police Act, 1951, the affidavit said, “There is no question of encroachment upon the privacy of any individual/customer visiting the restaurant/permit room.”

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Printable version | Nov 27, 2021 11:12:24 AM |

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