Bhatti Crimes in the Seattle Times

Front page of the Seattle Times

Last week Royal India was featured on the front page of the Seattle Times Sunday Edition in a story about wage theft. You can read the full article here:
Wage theft victims are owed $5.4 million that WA hasn’t collected (archive link). The story uses numerous references to Royal India to describe how our state government systematically fails to hold thieving employers accountable, something we’ve written about many times before.

The non-chain restaurant with the most complaints [for wage theft] was Royal India, a casual-dining Indian restaurant and catering company with two locations in Lynnwood and Kirkland that date back to 2004. Owner Mohammad Rashid Bhatti and manager Aeisha Bhatti have been the subjects of at least 37 wage complaints from workers since 2018.

The Seattle Times

Since this story was published, the Bhattis have closed down their location in Kirkland and taken down the Royal India sign. They’ve also dubiously claimed that the Lynnwood location is “under new ownership” and seems to be in the process of renaming that location to Dastoor, while keeping the same website and menu. We’re glad to see that their decades-old brand’s reputation is finally catching up to their true character but there’s more work to be done.

We’ll let the reader decide if someone has really chosen to buy a disgraced restaurant with no real estate, very high staff turnover and a toxic brand that they’re scrambling to leave behind. Either way, the owner is still responsible for paying that business’s debts, including all the workers the business has robbed in the past. 

SeaSol will be coming back to remind the community of those debts until the owners pay Juan and Pedro every penny. If the Bhattis think they can hide behind such a lazily constructed facade, they’re going to be very disappointed.