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Hyderabad High Court seeks explanation on hookah services

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HYDERABAD: The Hyderabad High Court on Wednesday directed the Telangana police to file a counter-affidavit explaining their stand on a petition alleging that the police were interfering in the provision of hookah services within smoking zones of restaurants of the city.

The counter-affidavit must be filed within two weeks. Justice A.V. Sesha Sai dealt with a petition filed by the proprietor of Urban Grill Dine and Coffee Shop and another individual seeking to direct the police authorities to act in accordance with the law and forbear them from interfering with their activity of providing hookah service, within the smoking zone, to customers of the restaurant. Vedula Venkata Ramana, senior counsel appearing for the petitioners, submitted that the law did not prohibit hookahs from being served in the smoking zones of restaurants and that the definition of smoking included the smoking of hookahs.

Advocate General D. Prakash Reddy submitted that the state government has amended the rules to ban any other services in the smoking zones of restaurants in the state.

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