When the night is still young...

When the night is still young...

Extended Deadline

When the night is still young...

It’s over two months since Bangalore was granted a temporarily extended deadline of its nightlife from 11 pm to 1 am on Fridays and Saturdays, a considerable jump for party-goers.

But while this might be cause for excitement for the public, the wait for the deadline has prevented hoteliers and authorities from making permanent arrangements to accommodate the change. 

Raghavendra H Auradkar, commissioner of police, says that being a policy matter, it’s up to the current government to take a final decision. 

“For the police force, there have been some minor issues to deal with because of the new deadline. For instance, a lot of commuters aren’t following traffic rules or parking properly because of a casual attitude to partying till later than they’re used to.

 We’ve even caught some youngsters drinking in cars and causing a nuisance. The home department will have the final say and we’ll have to wait and see what that is,” he says. 

Santosh, commissioner of the excise department, says that the trial run has been effective so far. 

“Bangalore is considered a cosmopolitan city and having a lively nightlife is much needed. The liquor licence is extended on Fridays and Saturdays but Sundays don’t need the extension as most people like to get home early. Special licences are issued for those who want it from Monday to Thursday,” he informs. 

DJs and bands are understandably in favour of the deadline and are optimistic that it will help build the City’s music scene if extended. “It’s a win-win situation for everybody because it galvanises Bangalore’s image as a cosmopolitan, forward-thinking city. As a DJ, it’s more fun for us because we get to play for longer hours and it enables us to give our audience a more fulfilling experience.

It also works in favour of clubs and restaurant because it directly translates to addition revenue. But I’m just hoping that it’s not another election gimmick,” says Achal Khanolkar, one half of deep house duo ‘Twokid Wickid’.

And it isn’t only the DJs who are pulling in the late night crowd. Jishnu Dasgupta, who plays bass for folk rock band ‘Swarathma’, recalls how in a show when the band played with the extended deadline, a packed crowd watched them performing from midnight to 1 am.

 “Bangalore let us play way into the night and it never even seemed like it was that late. That’s why I believe that the extension’s here to stay. As is the case with any change, there’ll be troubles to begin with but it’s a matter of time before it becomes a way of life,” he shares.

Sandeep Madhavan of the electronica project, ‘The Burning Deck’, hopes that the extension becomes permanent simply because it seems to be working. 

“There’s an ease with which one can go about the evening now. Plus there’s also a lot more music happening, which is good for bands since venues have to now programme two or even three acts instead of just one,” he says. 

But not everyone is as optimistic. “I’m skeptical because it was probably just a publicity stunt to get votes. I believe that places should be open till late but gigs could start and end early. It’s taxing on the listeners because nobody is used to the extension. 

However, given time, everybody including me will get used to the new deadline,” expresses Arjun Rao, a regular concertgoer.