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Sale of eatables above MRP in cine halls, multiplexes will result in fine & jail term: Akum Sabharwal

From August 1, cinema halls and multiplexes should sell water bottles, cool drinks and other food items as per MRP only. Selling more than MRP in violation of Legal Metrology Department order will result in heavy fine and also imprisonment, Legal Metrology Controller Akun Sabharwal has said. Food items or drinks sold loose in containers should have stickers with rate and measure compulsorily, he added.

            For past few days, Legal Metrology Department received several complaints against Cinema Halls and Multiplexes of selling food items and beverages more than MRP. Legal Metrology Department decided to take strict actions on Cinema Halls to control sale of food items at higher prices. Special orders are issued to make transactions on specified rates only. Theatre owners have already been given awareness on the new rules. In a review meeting, the Controller ordered the officials to check that new rules and guidelines should be followed regularly from August 1.

            Akun Sabharwal conducted review meeting with all District Assistant Controllers and Inspectors on Sunday, at the Legal Metrology Office on MRP Violations and Implementation of new Guidelines to be followed from August 1 in all Cinema Theatres and Multiplexes.           Briefing mediapersons, the Controller said every business or service or entertainment intended for consumers should be legal and authorized. If any consumer faces loss, theatre owners will be held responsible and serious action would be taken.

From August 1, Cinema Theatres and Multiplexes should compulsorily sell food items, water bottles and cool drinks at MRP only.           Food items sold loose in containers must be printed with weight, quantity, manufacturing date, expiry and MRP on them. Till September 1, stickers can be used, Akun Sabharwal said, adding that a board with details of weight, quantity and rate should be displayed clearly visible to all. Any change in weight, quantity or rate should be immediately changed. Multiple brand products should be kept for sale.

According to Legal Metrology Act, manufacturers should print product name, address, manufacturing date, expiry date, weight and MRP with customer care number on the packaged item. On August 2 and 3, special raids will conducted on Theaters and Multiplexes in Greater Hyderabad and HMDA zone to check the implementation of Legal Metrology rules and on August 4 and 5, State wide checks will be made. Single rate policy should be implemented. Rate should be same in theatres also as are in open market, he added.

The Legal Metrology Controller said first violation will result in booking of a case and Rs 25,000 penalty imposed against the offender, second time, Rs 50,000 fine and third time Rs 1 lakh penalty will be imposed and also imprisonment from six months to one year. He reminded that the  cinema theatres should display Toll-Free No 180042500333, Whats App No 7330774444, for Consumer complaints. 

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