Gurugram restaurant refuses entry to a differently-abled woman, internet is angry

We visit restaurants and cafes to break the monotony of life and unwind the errands of daily work life, but what if you are denied entry because you are differently abled? Sounds disturbing? Well, it has happened in Gurugram, where a woman in a wheelchair has claimed that a popular restaurant in Gurugram refused her entry as it would “disturb other customers”.

As per a series of tweets by Srishti Pandey, she visited Raasta, located in DLF Cyberhub, Gurugram with her best friend and her family on Friday and the staff denied her entry because of the wheelchair. Her tweet reads, “I went to my @raastagurgaon with my best friend and her fam last night. This was one of my first outings in so long and I wanted to have fun. Bhaiya (my friend’s elder brother) asked for a table for four. The staff at the desk ignored him twice.”

“Wheelchair andar nahi jaygi (the wheelchair won’t go inside)”. This was allegedly the reply she got from the staff at the restaurant’s front desk.

As soon as the tweet surfaced on social media, people started reacting with anger and the restaurant management apologised for the incident and said that they are looking into it.

Goumtesh Singh, Founder Partner at Raasta, said responding to her post, “I am personally looking into this incident. Let me start by apologising on behalf of entire team for any bad experience that you may have had. Please rest assured if any of our members are found in the wrong, appropriate action will be taken against them.”

In her tweet thread, she has mentioned that at first, she thought it was an “accessibility issue” but she was “left shocked” when the staff at the restaurant suggested that her presence could disturb other customers.

Her other tweet reads, “Andar customers disturb hojaynge” (The customers will get disturbed) and denied us entry, with so much of ease. This came from the staff of a freaking fancy place.”

After a lot of argument, she got a table outside, and if we go as per her tweet, “The outside seating was ridiculous. It was getting cold. And I can’t sit out in cold for long because my body gets spastic. It’s literally unsafe for me.”

In the same thread, she raised a question. “Why should I be made to sit outside anyway? segregated from everyone else? If we wanted an outside seating we would have asked for it?”

Her concluding tweet reads, “But is me just existing that much of a disturbance for you? Why do I always have to fight for the smallest of things? Why was I DENIED entry in a public place? Who are they to deny my entry just like that? “ Should I stop going out at all only then? Because apparently I don’t belong with others. Because I’m a “disturbance” for others. Because their moods apparently get “ruined” after looking at me. I am heartbroken. Awfully sad. And I feel disgusted.”

The Gurugram Police has also responded to her tweet seeking her contact details for further action. The post has gone viral and has been retweeted 2716 times till now.

Actor-filmmaker Pooja Bhatt also reacted to her tweet, and wrote, “Am terribly saddened that this happened to you. We suffer from an absolute lack of grace as a society. Wheelchair accessibility is one thing but refusing to see a human being who is confined to one as an equal and deserving of dignity is quite another.”

What do you think of this act by the restaurant? Share your thoughts in the comments section.

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