For a juice slightly costlier than elsewhere, youngsters had found much-needed privacy in cubbyholes after cops shooed them away from meeting on skywalk
From outside, the juice centres look innocuous
Lovebirds in Ulhasnagar might find themselves deprived of sweet nothings after the Ulhasnagar Municipal Corporation (UMC) took a hammer to their favourite haunts -- juice centres that offered more than just a cold drink. Civic authorities carried out demolitions in three centres after finding secret cavities that were meeting spots for couples.
This comes just a week after the civic body carried out demolitions at orchestra bars with similar secret rooms, used to hide the waitresses who were employed there.
Inside, they offer a private space to couples. Pics/Navneet Barhate
All three juice parlours -- Rajlaxmi Juice Centre, Suraj Juice Centre and Om Sai Ram Juice Centre -- are located near the Ulhasnagar station skywalk.
Om Sai Ram juice centre is innocuous looking
Sources from the UMC said that the secret cabins were used as love nests by young, college-going couples. The exteriors of the centers look innocuous since the cabins are hidden from the view of passers-by. Inside, however, the shops are crammed with at least 10 booths, each of them seat two people at a time. While Suraj juice centre's booths were partially open, the Rajlaxmi and Om Sai Ram parlours offered complete privacy, as the booths also had doors. The secret stalls are even fitted with fans, in case it gets too hot.
Inside, it housed cabins cooled off by fans. Pics /Navneet Barhate
Officials said a lack of privacy has earlier driven couples to spend alone time on the skywalk. But after the police had cracked down, the juice centres had turned into new hubs. Local residents tipped off municipal commissioner Sudhakar Shinde, who initiated action on Saturday.
Yuraj Badane, assistant municipal commissioner and public relations officer for UMC, said, "We received complaints from a few alert residents, after which we conducted the raid and found the claim to be true. On Saturday, we demolished the secret cabins; they can’t be erected again. We have found more than 10 secret cabins at each centre. The price of a glass of juice here is higher than at other centers."
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