CHENNAI: With meets of top political leaders fueling election alliance speculations, some restaurants and tea shops in the city have started to put up notices banning political discussions within their premises.
Restaurants and tea shops in Tamil Nadu, whether rural or urban, have been places where active political discussions take place. But food joints in the city have, of late, found this practice leading unnecessary fights which affects their business.
Any one who enters food joints run by an Adyar-based chain of restaurants can find notices at every corners restricting their customers from chatting about politics.
The manager of the restaurant, Sudhakar said that usually people order three to four coffees and start discussing local political scenario for hours together not allowing them to accommodate others waiting in line. While we could have made profits up to `20,000 during this time, without these restrictions we get into arguments with our customers and later we are forced to ask them to leave the premises, he added.
Supporting this, S Dinesh who works in a restaurant in Koyambedu said, “These people unintentionally draw people from adjacent tables into their discussion on political leaders and party ideas. Since people get easily emotional while discussing politics in Tamil Nadu, it results in heated exchanges and ends in fist fights.”
The general secretary of Tamil Nadu Hotels Association, R Srinivasan said that since it is a private place it was the right of the organisation to run their business as they wished and they could enforce any discipline they wanted.
“In cities like Chennai, families come to restaurants to relax. So we are forced to impose restrictions like this to avoid causing inconvenience to both the management and other customers,” he added.
It was not just restaurants, but also small roadside tea shops which have put up similar boards. The tea shop owners around Broadway said advocates and law college students who come here criticise politicians and some might not like it.
They claimed that they have put up these boards to stay on the safe side and not face the wrath of any local politician or policemen.