Mumbai bar brawl over Shilpa Shetty: Bouncers arrested for roughing up photographers
Two photographers assaulted while trying to snap Shilpa Shetty leave eatery; restaurant sacks security agency
Actor Shilpa Shetty, who was dining at the eatery with her husband, is seen leaving Bastian moments before the fight
Bastian, a speciality seafood restaurant on Linking Road, Bandra, finds itself in the dock after its team of bouncers brutally assaulted two independent photographers while they were trying to take photos of actor Shilpa Shetty and husband Raj Kundra, last night. Photographer Robin Chavla was left bleeding in the incident. According to a television journalist present at the spot, "Five of us had been waiting outside the restaurant since 9 pm."
Independent photographer Robin Chavla (blue) and the guards of Bastian exchange bloody blows right outside the restaurant on the busyBandra Linking Road
The videographer added, "When we saw them come out, we politely asked the bouncers to step out of the camera frame so that we could take pictures."
But, the bouncers allegedly stood in front of the couple all the way until they got into their car. Irritated, one of the photographers, Robin Chavla, questioned them. The argument snowballed into a brawl with the bouncers thrashing him.
According to eyewitnesses, one of the bouncers was wearing a kada, which he used to injure Chavla. The other photographer, Himanshu Shinde, who intervened, was also assaulted.
A bleeding Robin Chavla
Based on the statements of the photographers, the police have arrested bouncers Narendra Kunchi Korve, 29, and Ashutosh Kadar, 23.
Photographer Robin Chavla (blue) got into a fight with the bouncers of Bandra West’s high-profile Bastian restaurant last night, while trying to take pictures of actor Shilpa Shetty
Ramchandra Jadhav, senior police inspector, Khar police, said, "We have arrested the two and registered a FIR against them under sections 324 and 34 of the IPC. The case is being investigated."
When mid-day spoke to Kelvin Cheung, Bastian's corporate chef and consultant at Aallia Hospitality, which runs the speciality seafood eatery, he expressed regret over the incident. "We're saddened and shocked. We have celebrities and well-known guests visiting us frequently, and every experience has been smooth so far. During last night's incident, the people involved were personnel of Tough Security, hired by Bastian. This was an unfortunate incident that escalated beyond anything we could have imagined. As soon as the Bastian team found out, we took measures to get things under control," he said.
The Canadian-born chef, who has attained celebrity status in the time he has been a part of Mumbai F&B scene, said the restaurant had decided to change the security agency. "We also personally apologise to the media involved," he told mid-day, adding that that the establishment would take care of the medical bills incurred by the two injured photographers.
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