Indian restaurant in Bahrain shut down after duty manager refuses entry to woman in hijab


Authorities in Bahrain have shut down a restaurant after its duty manager allegedly denied entry to a woman in hijab. The restaurant in question has issued a public apology and suspended its manager.

According to a report by Bahrain’s Daily Tribune, the man in question is from Karnataka in India. Bahrain Tourism and Exhibition Authority has launched an investigation as it asked all tourism outlets to avoid any policy that violates the laws of the kingdom. It said, “We reject all actions that discriminate against people, especially regarding their national identity.”

The restaurant in question has been identified as Lanters Bahrain. 

The restaurant posted a statement on its Instagram page both in Arabic and English. It said, “Everyone is welcome to Lanterns as how it has been for more than 35 years that we have been serving all nationalities in the beautiful kingdom of Bahrain. Lanterns is a place for everyone to come enjoy with their families and feel at home. In this instance, a mistake has been made by a manager who is now being suspended as this does not represent who we are. As a goodwill gesture, we welcome all our Bahraini patrons to Lanterns on Tuesday 29th of March to have complimentary food on us.”

The development has evoked angry reactions on social media.

Meanwhile, the restaurant’s website where customers can place orders appears to have become inaccessible.

The news comes just days after the Karnataka High Court upheld the ban on Muslim girls’ rights to enter schools and colleges in hijab. The matter has been challenged in the Supreme Court but Chief Justice of India NV Ramana has refused to hear the matter on an urgent basis.

Earlier, Miss Universe Harnaaz Kaur Sandhu had publicly taken a bold stand in support for Muslim girls wearing hijab as she urged people to respect their right to dress in according to their choice.

According to the restaurant’s website, it has been operating since 1987.

“Lanterns Indian Restaurant has been serving delicious, authentic Indian cuisine to residents of Bahrain since 1987. We take pride in serving tasty Indian food with native picks from all over India with specialties derived from the regions of Punjab and the Northern side of India. Visit us and come to the Treasure of Pleasure to dine in a beautiful surrounding with unforgettable décor to lose your senses that takes you away from the city life of Bahrain into the heart of Little India,” reads the website.