Restaurateurs feel that most eateries may not opt to extend timings

On Thursday night, the first day of the relaxed deadline for eateries, the city continued to wear a deserted look around midnight.

A recce of the Central Business District showed that most eateries shut down at the usual time. The management of a few were unaware of the new deadline.

Shivakanth, who works at a small restaurant in Majestic, says, “There is a lot of talk about staying open till 1 a.m., but eateries have to be convinced that there is a profit to be made. Who will come that late? Is it worth paying overtime to staff for the extended hours?” Manjunath, a pushcart vendor selling dosas near Vyalikaval, is happy that the deadline had been extended. “But the number of customers has not increased because people don’t know about it yet,” he said. At the same time, he fears people may go to bigger restaurants now that they will have options.

Owners of vegetarian restaurant do not expect a spike in business. They also have to bear in mind that they have to open again early in the morning. Bangalore Hotels Association president Vasudeva Adiga says, “Besides this, restaurants have to incur a heavy cost on running air conditioners, payment to staff and other expenditure.” The rule may help 5 per cent of about 6,000 hotels in Bangalore, he added.

He expects only high-end restaurants to extend business hours. “Good business can be expected in Majestic, Indiranagar, Koramangala, M.G. Road and Brigade Road, which have many pubs and bars,” he added.

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