Reduce number of licences required for restaurants: NRAI

New Delhi, April 7 (IANS) Attempting to make restaurants function more smoothly in the national capital, the National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) on Thursday pitched for reducing number of licences required for running them and pushed for the development of more tourism hubs in Delhi.

“There are more than 30 licences that are required to open a restaurant in Delhi. There is an urgent need to modify the process for seeking licences.

there should be a single registration form and a single window system should be introduced to hasten the procedure of getting an approval for opening a restaurant,” NRAI president Riyaaz Amlani said at a media roundtable here.

The NRAI has an uphill task before it but there have been some notable successes. For instance, approval from the Delhi government’s tourism department is no longer requirred to open a restaurant. Also, hookah bars have been made legal in Delhi.

Amlani also pointed out anamolies between different states.

“A licence from the police is not required in Maharashtra while it is required in Delhi. The government should also make the renewal process of licences easy for the operators,” added Amlani.

He also spoke of the need to develop tourism hubs in Delhi.

“Tourism hubs like Huaz Khas Village and Khan Market needs more focus on aspects like infrastructure, electricity and traffic management. Connaught Place in Delhi is perhaps the only organised tourism hub. The state government needs to look after other places as well,” Amlani added.

Amlani also pitched for reducing the legal drinking age, which varies from state to state, in Delhi.

“In Haryana, it is 18 while in Delhi it is 25,” he said, adding that there was no check on youngsters buying alcohol from shops. “It is much safer for a young adult consumes alcohol in a regulated and licensed environment,” he noted.

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