Cinema owners should provide free drinking water to movie viewers: NCDRC

National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission recently hit at the unethical practice of cinema hall owners wherein neither did they allow taking of water bottles inside the cinema nor did they provide free clean and cold drinking water to the movie viewers and instead charged exorbitant amounts through their cafeterias.

The NCDRC hit at such practice and said that in case water bottles are not allowed inside due to security considerations, then not only should the cinema hall owners ensure that free cold water is provided to the viewers but also ensure adequate disposable glasses are provided along with it. NCDRC also made regular maintenance a pre requisite.

The Commission said “In our opinion, a cinema hall, which seeks to prohibit carrying of drinking water inside the cinema hall for security reasons, must necessarily provide free portable and pure drinking water through water coolers installed inside the cinema halls, before such a prohibition can be enforced.  An appropriate water purifiers such as Aqua-guards, needs to be installed with the water coolers so that the water available to the cinema-goers is free from the impurities.  Disposable glasses in sufficient quantity need to be kept available near the water coolers.”

“It has also to be ensured that the water supply is actually available through the water coolers before the movie starts as well as throughout the screening of the movie including interval.  If for any reason, water supply is not available on a particular day, alternative arrangements for supply of free pure and portable drinking water to the cinema-goers needs to be made available by the owners of the cinema hall. The cinema hall is also required to ensure that the water coolers as well as water purifiers remain fully functional and are regularly serviced from time to time so that only purified water is dispensed through the coolers.   If this is not done, the owner of the cinema hall would be liable to pay appropriate compensation for the deficiency in rendering services to the cinema-goers,” it further said.

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