Cinema Halls, Multiplexes Can Disallow Moviegoers From Taking Outside Food & Beverages Inside, Rules Supreme Court

There is no compulsion to buy the food. As regards water that all halls ensure that hygienic water is made available

On Tuesday, The Supreme Court held that an owner of a cinema hall has the right to regulate movies goers from carrying food and beverage from outside.

A bench of Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud and Justice PS Narasimha underlined that a cinema hall is the private property of the owner so he can put such terms and conditions.

The bench was hearing a batch of pleas filed by theatre owners and Multiplex Association of India challenging a 2018 verdict of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court in which High Court had allowed cinema goers to carry their own food and beverages inside the hall.

Setting aside the direction of the High Court, the Supreme Court said: “The High Court exceeded jurisdiction in passing such an order. It has been submitted movie hall owners that drinking water will be supplied free of charge and when an infant accompanies a parent, as a matter of practice hall owners do not object to reasonable amount of food for infant.”

The Court added, “A cinema hall owner has the right to regulate the entry of food and beverage. Whether to consume what is available is entirely upon the choice of the movie goer. Viewers visit hall for entertainment.”

Senior Advocate KV Viswanathan also submitted that there is no compulsion to buy the food. As regards water that all halls ensure that hygienic water is made available, he added.

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