Beijing’s Legal Affairs Office has deleted an item on a draft regulation that bans eating on the city’s subways. This particular item, says the office, will be included in a passengers’ handbooks, which will “suggest” that people stop eating on subways.
The municipality published the draft regulation in February stipulating that anyone eating on subways could face a fine ranging from 50 to 500 yuan, or an official warning issued by the transport authority. Eating in elevators, public hallways, other types of transportation or on escalators were also punishable actions under the original draft.
However, the ban proposal sparked heated debate among the public Those in support of the ban said the smell of hot food is unbearable on subways;. Whereas others protested that, as people may not have time for breakfasts in a fast-paced city like Beijing , snacks and cold food should at least be allowed.
In the face of the debates, officials from the municipal Legal Affairs Office said they needed to reconsider whether the regulation coincides with life in Beijing. Also, citing additional concerns over how thoroughly the ban will be implemented, they decided to remove the eating ban from the proposal.
Beijing is not the first city in China to consider banning eating on subways. Shenzhen in southern China banned eating on subways in 2007 and violators may be fined up to 200 yuan. Hong Kong also has similar regulations.