Islamabad: The owners of 39 hotels, canteens
and eateries in Pakistan`s Punjab province were arrested and
sent to jail for violating an ordinance that bars eating and
serving food in public during the Islamic holy month of
Ramzan, officials said on Sunday.
The people were arrested in Faisalabad city for violating
the Ehtiram-e-Ramzan Ordinance, government spokesman said.
The arrests were made during raids conducted across the
city by teams of officials.
The raiding officers drew up `chalans` or chargesheets
against the 39 people and sent them to jail for 72 hours.
Last week, authorities in Faisalabad arrested 25 people
for eating and drinking in public.
The Pakistan government has prohibited eating, drinking
and smoking in public places during the fasting hours of
Ramzan to "ensure the sanctity of the month".
The restrictions were imposed under the Ehteram-e-Ramzan
Ordinance, which was introduced during the regime of late
military ruler Zia-ul-Haq.
The Ordinance prohibits serving of foods in public
places, sets closure timings of cinema halls, theatres and
other establishments and directs authorities to take steps for
maintaining the sanctity of Ramzan.