Wanna get our awesome news?

Subscribe to our newsletter!


Actually we won’t spam you and keep your personal data secure

As the voice of the Indian restaurant industry, we represent the interests of 500000+ restaurants & an industry valued @ USD 4 billion. Whether a chain or independent restaurant, the NRAI is here to help every step of the way. Join us!


Eateries to protest service charge, stay shut on May 1


If you are planning to dine out on May 1, it would be better to shelve the plan for now as restaurants in the Capital have decided to shut shop on the day to protest against the government advisory on service charge. Armed with their referendum of demands, mainly focussed on the service charge, the eatery owners will also stage a protest at Jantar Mantar on Labour Day.

Resentment has been brewing within the hospitality industry since the government came up with the recommendation that levying service charge was not mandatory. Leaving it to the discretion of customers to decide how much they want to pay, the suggestion has led to confusion rather than resolution. While a lot of establishments continue to bill 10 per cent service charge, categorically stating the same on their menus, some have taken a midway by reducing the amount, but charging nevertheless.

The main objective of May 1 protest is to urge the government to roll back its advisory and “let the restaurants decide” on the matter. The National Restaurants Association of India (NRAI) will also submit a memorandum in this regard to Ram Vilas Paswan, Minister of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution.

In an official statement, NRAI President Riyaaz Amlani said: “Guidelines are not laws. The present statement by the government is causing unnecessary confusion in public, which is adversely affecting the smooth functioning of restaurants. It is once again reiterated that, as of now, levying of service charge by restaurants is legal and does not violate the provisions of Consumer Protection Act, 1986, since the same is mentioned in the menu or price list and informed to the customer.”

He further said: “Levying of service charge directly benefits six million people employed in the industry. Of these, more than 60 per cent employees depend on service charge to augment upto 30 per cent of their income. All the organised food and beverage operators employ the service charge method to ensure that all employees are beneficiaries and not just waiters but also cooks, toilet attendants, and cleaners. Unless there is a legislation, restaurants will continue to levy service charge.”

Claiming that it was the “right” of those at the backend, who made dining out a worthwhile experience, including chefs, janitors, and durbaans, Junkyard and Garam Dharam owner Umang Tewari said: “It is a misconception that owners pocket the amount collected as service charge. We distribute it equally to all the staffers and it is an additional source of income for them. Instead of clamping down on us on one matter or the other, the government should let us run our businesses the way we want.”

Source: DNA India

Recommended for you