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Shutting nightclubs will not stop crimes against women: Arjun Rampal

Indo Asian News Service
6 January 2013

Mumbai, Jan 6 (IANS) Actor Arjun Rampal says his LAP nightclub in Delhi's Hotel Samrat is losing money following restrictions on their functioning in the wake of the gang-rape of a 23-year-old woman in the capital and feels "shutting down nightclubs early is not a solution to the growing crimes against women."

Asked if he is suffering any loss due to the current scenario in Delhi, Arjun told IANS Saturday: "Yes, of course, we are, because what happened is that the minute something like this happens, the first place that people close down early are nightclubs."

"I don't agree with it... many feel that people will get drunk and come out, but those are not the rapists. Rapists are the people who are sick in their head. It is wrong to just clamp down," he added.

After the Dec 16 incident, the authorities had asked all discotheques and nightclubs to close by 1 a.m. LAP was one of the very few permitted to remain open till 3.

The actor says people need to be protected with more manpower, and "shutting down nightclubs early is not a solution to the growing crimes against women". However, he is all for adequate security for his club's patrons.

"Despite closing everything early, you couldn't stop a rape that happened on Dec 31. You need more protection, more people. If you feel uncomfortable from letting places open after a certain hour, then make a special licence. If I buy that licence, you give me some police officers who can protect my place and the people who come there. As a club owner, I only want my people who come there to be safe," he added.

Arjun opened LAP in 2009 and says he has been able to employ people who were "gundas" (ruffians) earlier.

"We also employ people... when you shut clubs and institutions down, those people will lose their jobs. What are they going to do... they are going to commit more crimes because they are not graduates. My bouncers and my security people were gundas who have got a decent job now. I am rehabilitating them. Government needs to look at all those things," said the 40-year-old.

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