Movie halls must provide free drinking water as it is a basic necessity and not everyone may be in a position to afford it at “exorbitant rates”, the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) has ruled.

“A movie watcher may include old and infirm persons as well as the children for whom it would be difficult to manage without water for three hours or more.

“The water being a basic necessity for human beings, it is obligatory for the cinema hall to make it available to the movie-goers in case they decide not to allow the drinking water to be carried inside the cinema hall,” NCDRC bench headed by Justice V K Jain said.