Shocked at the unreasonably high rate of water and other snacks at the multiplexes, an advocate has moved the Madhya Pradesh High Court seeking direction to the state government to bring in a policy to regulate the price of food items in multiplexes.
Advocate Mohammad Iqurram from Bhopal moved the high court saying “multiplexes and theatres intentionally keep costly food items in their food lounge so that the consumer has to shell out extra amounts for food items even when they have other cheaper options available and is hence an unfair trade practice”.
The petitioner has also prayed that cinegoers with a medical condition should be allowed to bring in their own food.
The petitioner moved court after he visited a multiplex of Cinepolis India Pvt Ltd on July 8 for a film show and was forced to buy one litre of water at Rs 80 when the market price is Rs 15-20. He also states in his petition that popcorn was being sold at Rs 240 which otherwise is sold at Rs 50 in the market.
“It is impossible for a middle-class person to buy food items from the multiplex at such high rates. Hence it is against the concept of social welfare. As multiplexes and theatres have already charged price on tickets, charging a higher price on food items is illegal and encouraging unfair trade practices,” he said.
The petitioner said selling food items at such high rates is an infringement of Articles 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution and that under the Madhya Pradesh Cinemas (Regulation) Rules, 1972, there is no such provision to sell food items in the theatre or multiplex premises higher than the actual rate.
The petition also sought directions against multiplexes barring people from getting their own food during the show and prayed that people with medical conditions like diabetes etc., should be allowed to bring their own food.