Rumours of leakage and trouble with permissions have shut down the Real Poseidon, Ahmedabad’s first underwater restaurant. According to reports, the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) has officially sealed the restaurant after they discovered that certain development permissions had not been approved.
“The restaurant will be issued a notice, and we will seal it on Thursday because it has not sought the mandatory development permission under the town planning rules,” said Devang Desai, deputy municipal commissioner of AMC in an interview with Times of India. “The seal will remain in place until it seeks the necessary approvals needed under town planning rules. We will not allow it to operate otherwise,” he said.
Ahmedabad Fire And Emergency Services also came forward to dispute the owner’s (Bharat Bhatt) earlier claim of having acquired all necessary permissions from the AMC, the health department and the fire department. The Chief Fire Officer M F Dastur claimed that he had only come to know about the restaurant’s launch from media reports. “I am yet to visit the restaurant. We have not given any permission to the restaurant. It needs to have permission from the department of fire in case of emergencies like flooding of water and emergency exits, he said.
However, the Real Poseidon’s first nail in the coffin was rumours of a leakage in the aquarium. Bhatt (ex-owner of the now-closed Setu restaurant near Cadila Bridge) denied the leaks, but admitted there were a couple of issues that required attention. “There was a problem with the circulation that made the water inside the aquarium sandy making it difficult for fishes to be seen. Besides, there was an unexpected rush of people and calls for bookings throughout the day. There were also other small problems like an exposed air conditioning wire that was a small eyesore and customers suggested that we conceal it. We are taking care of unfinished work,” he said.
The restaurant’s website also appeared to have been overlooked: alongside several misspellings, certain details had been left blank with indications to be filled, and dummy text areas still existed.
Bhatt claimed he was inspired by the idea of the 32-seater, multi-cuisine vegetarian restaurant from his 12-year-old son whose friends had visited similar eateries in Dubai. “I have designed the entire restaurant myself. I had even planned underwater walkways with fishes inside. However, that did not work out,” he said.