The Delhi High Court has imposed a cost of Rs. 10,000 on New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) for sealing a restaurant in Connaught Place without issuing a notice.
Justice V. Kameswar Rao said there was flagrant violation of principles of natural justice and that the NDMC’s action cannot be justified.
The court refused to entertain NDMC’s argument that the action was taken on the direction of the Supreme Court-mandated monitoring committee.
The court has asked the NDMC to issue a show-cause notice to Destination Cafe Pvt. Ltd., which runs Zabardast Indian Kitchen, within three days, detailing the reasons due to which it intends to seal the premises along with the communication received from the monitoring committee.
The court also said that if the civic body agrees with the pleas taken by the restaurant, the follow-up action shall be taken.
It also said there was nothing to suggest that the NDMC had considered the material or the past litigation referred to by the restaurant, before taking the action.
“It is a case of flagrant violation of principles of natural justice. The action cannot be justified. The Division Bench...has clearly held that an order of sealing could not have been passed without giving a hearing,” the court said while imposing a cost of Rs. 10,000 on NDMC that should be paid to the restaurant.
Destination Cafe said the premises was leased out to it for carrying out restaurant/bar business through lease deeds registered on May 18, 2016 and it employed 70 people.