Hookah is basically an apparatus with a long pipe arising from a vessel containing a smoke chamber inside. It is used for inhaling tobacco, flavored tobacco, or even intoxicants like opium, cannabis, and hash. It is highly injurious to health as it affects the lungs and the heart, increases cancer risks, and causes skin aging.

Hookah has been in existence since the time of Mughal rule in India. Now teenagers and adults are smoking hookah on a large scale at house parties or in cafes and lounges.

On December 2, 2022, the Mayor of Kolkata, Firhad Hakim, declared that all hookah bars in the city will be shut down and the pubs that defy the rules of the government will be legally charged.

Closure Of Hookah Bars In Kolkata

The Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) announced the closure of all hookah bars in the city due to the severely harmful impacts they have on human health. The mayor also mentioned that no new licences to run hookah parlors in the city will be issued by the KMC and that the existing licences will also be canceled.

Firhad Hakim, Mayor of Kolkata

Firhad Hakim, the Mayor of Kolkata, said, “We have placed the request for the closing down of all hookah bars in Kolkata. We will not be giving any new license for running a hookah bar and whosoever we have given license to, will be directed not to serve hookah. If anybody is found to be serving hookah, the trade license of the concerned business owner will be revoked then.”

Discovery Of “Certain Intoxicants” 

The Mayor of Kolkata, Firhad Hakim, claimed that the government had received reports of “certain intoxicants” being added to hookahs in various pubs and lounges so that the youngsters get addicted to them.

He stated, “Chemicals used in such hookahs are extremely bad for health. So, we have decided to shut them.” 

The administrators of the city have ordered the Kolkata Police to keep strict surveillance on restaurants and clubs that serve hookah after the publication of the notice.

Also Read: How Harmful Is The Hookah You Are Smoking In These Cafes?

Hookah Bar Owners Express Dissatisfaction 

Most of the hookah parlors have shut down in Kolkata, and a few that are still open, can only serve food and beverages. The Kolkata Police have raided several pubs and clubs after the KMC ordered them to.

The owner of a hookah bar in Bhowanipur expressed concerns as to how it would affect his business. He said, “The Mayor spoke about some hookah bars serving hookah with addictive substances. But for some hookah bars, the entire industry should not suffer.”

Another hookah bar owner in Park Street who closed his bar after the order, said, “We had been legal businessmen even two days ago and now suddenly we are being viewed as criminals. We believe the civic body is trying to fix a revenue model and initiate a new licensing before they allow us to return to business again.”

Prabhat Singh, owner of the hookah parlor Tyre Patty near Elgin Road in Kolkata, is still running his cafe without serving hookah. He claimed, “We are known for our hookahs. Now with the ban being imposed, we are still selling some food to help us and our staff but we don’t know for how long we can operate in this manner.”

Let us know what you think of the situation in the comment section below.

Disclaimer: This article is fact-checked

Image Credits: Google Photos

Feature Image designed by Saudamini Seth

Source: The Indian ExpressThe Times Of India The Telegraph

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This post is tagged under: hookah, banned, hookah bars, hookah bars closed, Kolkata, harmful, intoxicants, intoxication, drugs, tobacco, flavored tobacco, opium, hash, cannabis, injurious to health, smoking, smoke, kills, pubs, lounges, cafes, bars, clubs, hookah banned, KMC, Kolkata Municipal Corporation, Mayor, Firhad Hakim, hookah illegal, law

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