Sandalwood drug scandal: Demand for closure of dance bars in Bengaluru gains momentum

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Former chief minister HD Kumarswamy said that the dance bars being run across the city have become dens of drug supply centres.

Demands for closure of dance bars in the Karnataka capital of Bengaluru have gained momentum in the wake of the drug scandal rocking the Kannada film industry.

The demand was made by various organisations after deeper involvement of film personalities and politicians were found during investigation into the scandal after the racket was busted by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) with the arrest of three drug peddlers last month.

The demand gained strength on Sunday when former chief minister HD Kumarswamy backed it. He said that the dance bars being run across the city have become dens of drug supply centres.

“The incumbent government is not dependent on anybody's mercy. Therefore, Chief Minister, BS Yediyurappa should take this bold step of announcing closure of the dance bars,” he was quoted by the News Minute as saying.

"There has been ample evidence against dance bars in Bengaluru, where many peddlers and addicts come together for a jaunt. The state government must take steps to stop this by banning the dance bars," he said.

The drugs case gained momentum with the Narcotics Control Bureau arresting three people in Bengaluru for allegedly supplying drugs to Kannada film stars and singers. Soon after the arrest, the City police too, started investigation. Besides the Central Crime Branch, the Enforcement Directorate has also started probing the financial aspects of the drugs scandal.

Leader of Opposition in Karnataka assembly Siddaramaiah sought merciless action against those involved in drug peddling and substance abuse in the state, and said the investigation into the case has to be "impartial" and without any political motive.

"Any investigation has to be impartial, it should not be done without any political motive. Drug is a menace to the whole society, this has been around for several years now and it has to be stopped," Siddaramaiah was quoted by the Week as saying.

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