Additional security measures are being put in place this New Year's eve.
Caution seems to be the buzzword this New Year's eve. While most party-goers are all set to ring in the New Year, pub and restaurant owners are tightening the security measures for the night.
The Bengaluru City Police are also making elaborate arrangements to ensure that people have fun yet remain safe. Security has been beefed up in and around CBD areas, Indiranagar, Koramangala, Sarjapur Road among other areas.
In addition to installing watchtowers at all prominent spots in the city, the Bengaluru City Police are also pressing extra police personnel into service. Elaborating on the security arrangements for New Year's eve, Bengaluru City Police Commissioner T Suneel Kumar says, "The deadline on December 31 has been extended till 2 am. There will not be any barricade separating men and women and people are allowed to walk freely but without disrupting the peace. We will be installing additional CCTV cameras at several points across the city. We want to cover every inch of the city to ensure that people are safe." Suneel also cautions that there will be stringent checks on drunk driving from 9 pm on December 31. "People found driving under the influence of alcohol will not be spared. Checks will be doubled around pubs and restaurants. People who plan to consume alcohol must make arrangements to be driven home," he warns.
Pub owners are taking no risks and making arrangements to secure their premises on New Year's eve.
Swaminath, owner of White Plate on M G Road, has decided against putting out offers that have unlimited alcohol and plans to have a set menu where alcohol will be a la carte. "This is a precaution in itself because this will surely regulate the consumption of alcohol as people will have to pay for it. We are concentrating more on the food and less on alcohol. We have also decided against having special programmes because of security issues," says Swaminath. He adds that he plans to have more CCTV cameras installed in the premises and will also rope in extra bouncers.
Bengalureans who intend to head out on New Year's eve say that they want to have fun without risking their safety. Ganapathy Bopaiah, a businessman, is planning to head to Bangalore Club for the New Year's eve bash. "I hope to hire a driver because this will ensure that we can stay out for as long as we want and get home safe as well," says Ganapathy. Sree Kumar, another businessman, plans to hire a service apartment for a house party. "My friends and I have decided to party in a service apartment and don't want to head out. We feel that this is the safest option. We would like to stay away from the hot spots of the city on New Year's eve," says Sree Kumar.
Some women have become more alert and say they don't want to venture out that day. Arthi Sudarshan, an employee of Deutsche Bank, says she will stay home on New Year's eve. "Earlier I would party out but I stopped a couple of years ago because my parents are always worried when I am out late. So this year, I will stay at home and ring in the New Year with my family," says Arthi.