Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Longer nightlife will make city a happening place

Longer nightlife will make city a happening place

If the 11.30 pm deadline is extended to 2 am, the quality of life will get enhanced

Keshav Krishnamurty and Divya Roy

The Karnataka government's recent proposal to extend the 11.30 pm deadline for 5-star hotels and other eateries has been welcomed by Bangaloreans. Keshav Krishnamurty and Divya Roy spoke to Kripal Amanna, the editor of Food Lovers Magazine, to find out what a decision to allow nightlife till 2 am would mean to the city.

What is a move like this going to do to Bangalore's nightlife?
It will elevate Bangalore's status as a city with the 'happening' quotient. I moved to Bangalore from Mumbai. When I was there, I used to think of Bangalore as a happening place. But, since then, there has been a clampdown, and the city is no longer a 'happening' place. Business groups as well as the rest of the population do more than just transact business. People who come to the city, even if it is just for a while, take back a little of the city with them. Relaxing the deadline would help. The extended deadline can help you do a lot more in the evening, and plan things better for the evening.

Which other sectors do you think will benefit if the proposal becomes a reality?
Anything that has an 'evening quotient' will benefit. People can spend more time with their families instead of having to come rushing out of home or office. They can spend more time at home and with their families. The quality of life will get enhanced. Theatres, shopping, restaurants — just about anything will get a boost. People will work more effectively and at a relaxed pace in their office. People in restaurants will not have to rush through their last orders and can enjoy their meals in peace.

Do you think the deadline for pubs and bars should also be relaxed?
I think it (the deadline) should be extended for all the top restaurants and bars because it is not just the 5-star hotels that offer good options. There are so many good bars and restaurants that customers can go to for a night out.

Will our nightlife then be what it was before the 11:30 pm deadline was implemented?
I think so. I still remember the perception people had of Bangalore — a nice, clean and happening place. Bangalore still has the best weather in the country. If the nightlife is extended, it will add to the city's appeal. Seventy per cent of Bangalore's population is made up of people from outside the city, but they make the city their own and develop it further. It would be wonderful to see the city's nightlife becoming as active as it was before.

Does it make good business sense for the city as a whole?
It makes great business sense because everyone will benefit. Just because the deadline has been extended doesn't mean people will drink more. They can plan more, think more about what to do and get more out of the city as a whole.

Is there anything else you would like to say?
We've heard of such proposals many times before, but nothing has happened so far. This time, I hope it does become a reality.

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