Hyderabad: Hopping into a pub and downing a drink or two won’t be that easy from now. The Prohibition and Excise Department has made identity cards, particularly Aadhar cards, mandatory if one has to be served in pubs in the city.
The move comes in the wake of several pubs coming under the scanner of the department for turning into hubs of sale and consumption of drugs and other psychotropic substances. This revelation came during the investigation into the major drug racket, allegedly involving several personalities from the Telugu tinsel world as well, which was busted early in July.
During the probe, investigators had found that several transactions pertaining to cocaine, Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) and other drugs were carried out at some of the pubs in the city, with suppliers meeting their clients at pubs, officials said.
Following this, the department has asked owners of all pubs across the city to ensure that their clients carry their Aadhar cards to prove their age. If the client is found to be below 21, the managements are not to allow him inside the premises.
The managements have also been asked to maintain a separate register to enter details of those visiting their pubs. The move would not only keep underaged persons away from visiting pubs but also enable the department from easily tracing those found to be involved in drugs with the help of ID proofs, officials said.
Excise Superintendent and SIT chief S. Srinivas Rao said licence norms already stipulate that managements ask for identity proof of those visiting pubs. “It’s not a new rule. We are only implementing an existing rule,” he said.
The SIT had earlier issued warning letters to managements of 14 pubs in the city and suspended the licence of F Club. A meeting was also conducted with representatives from the hoteliers’ associations on measures to be taken to prevent the drug menace.