If you’re a current restaurant owner who wants to add hookahs to your menu or a new restaurant owner who wants to launch a new hookah lounge, you’re well aware that there are a host of requirements to follow. In some parts of the world, a hookah is a tobacco-filled water pipe that comes in a variety of flavors such as apple, cinnamon, and mint. This pipe is smoked in the same way that cigarettes are smoked by a wide range of people. Tobacco’s negative effects are well-known. It is extremely hazardous to both smokers’ and nonsmokers’ health. Because hookah contains tobacco, the government requires a hookah bar license.
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The Indian government’s FSSAI updated anti-tobacco policies on May 30th, 2017, making it unlawful to serve food and beverages in designated smoking zones. As a result, restaurant owners must now follow these guidelines and get or renew an FSSAI license for their hookah bars.
How can I get a license for a hookah bar?
In India, each state has its own set of laws for acquiring a licence to sell alcoholic beverages and tobacco products. There are, however, some universal rules that all states adhere to. The COTPA Act, which went into force on October 2, 2008, requires all hookah bar operators to follow it.No one will be allowed to smoke in any public place, according to Section 4 of the COTPA. “Provided that in a hotel with thirty rooms or a restaurant with a sitting capacity of thirty individuals or more, and at airports, a separate provision for smoking area or space may be created,” it reads.
A trade licence is required to operate a hookah bar, according to the licensee Court. The licenseignificant piece of paperwork for a hookah shop is a trade licence. A hookah bar licence must be secured from the city or town’s police commissioner.
- A completed application must be presented to the Police Commissioner.
- If the following conditions are met, the Commissioner of Police will give the licence:
- Tobacco products cannot be sold to anybody under the age of eighteen.
- A hookah bar should be at least 100 yards away from any school, hospital, or place of worship.
- Ingredients in hookahs should be legal, and anti-tobacco legislation should not apply to them.
Municipal Corporation Trade License and Shops and Establishment Act
The establishment must either have a municipal license or be registered under the Shops and Establishment Act. The Department of Labor is in charge of enforcing the Shops and Establishment Act. It governs the working conditions of for-profit commercial companies, trusts, societies, for-profit educational institutions, and for-profit banking, stock trading, and insurance establishments. It stipulates working hours, vacations, minimum salary, maternity leaves, and holidays, among other things.
The cost of obtaining a trade license from a municipal corporation varies by city. A Trade License application can be submitted either in person or online at the Citizen Service Bureau (CSB). By purchasing Rs.25, you can gain access to CSB’s application. The application can be obtained from the internet and then delivered to the CSB closest to you. A G8 receipt is issued after the application and processing costs have been submitted. The registration number on this G8 receipt is unique. After that, the location is inspected by the license inspector. A unique registration number is issued after the examination is completed and the licensing inspector accepts it. The CSB operator receives the unique registration number after that. After that, the health trade license is printed. The operator is then reimbursed for the license and processing fees. The trading license will then be signed by a representative of the municipal corporation. There are a couple of documents that must be submitted. The specifics are as follows:
- Site map
- The most important plan
- A copy of a certified architect’s sanction plan or completion plan.
- Connection to the water and sewer systems
- Bond of indemnity
- Affidavit as well as a copy of the partnership agreement
Other factors to consider include the fact that hookah lounges require the presence of a restaurant to operate. According to the authorities, hookah lounges are not permitted to operate on their own. As a result, the FSSAI requires an extra application for a Food License. Food permits are issued in India by the Food Safety and Standard Authority of India (FSSAI). For restaurateurs, this is a legal obligation. This is to ensure that all food enterprises meet and maintain a high standard of food quality. The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India requires every restaurant owner to register (FSSAI). You must first decide whether you are eligible for a basic, state, or central driver’s licence before proceeding. The application is then sent to regional offices or online, along with the needed papers. Following that, the restaurant owner would pay the fees, which would then be validated. If all of the FSSAI’s standards are met, the restaurant is granted a food license.
Another condition for acquiring a commercial license is that the smoking area is built apart from the main restaurant and that the majority of the restaurant space be used for eating. Furthermore, as previously indicated, food and beverages are not permitted to be offered in the smoking area. It is also necessary to obtain a letter of approval from the neighbors. The fire department also requires another important license. The establishment is inspected by the fire department to check that all firefighting precautions are in place.
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Fees for obtaining a license
The cost of getting a hookah license varies by state and is determined on where the hookah will be served. The hookah bar licensing fees are determined by the location of the lounge, which could be a standalone restaurant, a five-star hotel, or a nightclub. Restaurant owners can start a hookah lounge in their establishments once all of the open conditions have been met.