Two restaurants operating in the posh Kohsar Market earned the ire of authorities after they were found serving food and drinks during fasting hours.
On Saturday, the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) Administration sealed the popular cafes for violating the Ehteram-i-Ramazan Ordinance 1981 which prohibits consumption of food and drinks in public places during fasting hours.
An official said the two restaurants — Gloria Jeans and Mocca Coffee — were sealed after their management was found serving coffee, cold drinks and lunch to their customers in violation of the ordinance, promulgated by military dictator and former president Ziaul Haq.
Additional Deputy Commissioner (General) Abdus Sattar Essani said though the restaurants have been sealed, they will be allowed to be opened if their owners give written statements that they will not violate the law again. However, a visit to the market on Monday revealed that both restaurants will be open for business following Iftar which showed that the matter had been ‘settled’.
He said that the ICT Administration will continue its drive to ensure implementation of the ordinance.
The official explained that under the ordinance, serving meal, drinks and other food items in restaurants, hospitals, bus stops and other open places was not allowed. He said foreigners should go to the Diplomatic Enclave instead of visiting restaurants in the city during Ramazan.
Meanwhile, the ICT Administration also sealed Café Le Balto situated in Sector F-11 for violating the ban and offering sheesha to visitors.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 23rd, 2015.
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