Bengaluru

Police tell pub owners: Make Koramangala another M.G. Road

The police have proposed Indiranagar, Koramangala and HSR Layout as alternatives to M.G. Road and Brigade Road for New Year revellers.

The police have proposed Indiranagar, Koramangala and HSR Layout as alternatives to M.G. Road and Brigade Road for New Year revellers.  

The police have proposed Indiranagar, Koramangala and HSR Layout as alternatives to M.G. Road and Brigade Road for New Year revellers.

The city police, who have been strategising to ensure maintenance of law and order on M.G. Road and Brigade Road on New Year’s Eve, are suggesting alternative areas for revellers to head to.

But it has angered many citizens, as the areas that the police have proposed — Koramangala, HSR Layout and Indiranagar — have been witnessing widespread protests by residents against “conversion of residential pockets into party hubs”.

Seemanth Kumar Singh, Additional Commissioner (East), held a meeting with pub and restaurant owners in Koramangala on Thursday and urged them to “make Koramangala another M.G. Road”.

“Why do people go to Brigade Road when the facilities are better here, except lighting, which we will fix? New Year celebrations in other parts of the city are also important and we will provide adequate security in these commercial hubs as well,” he said.

Appealing to bar and pub owners to be more interactive and help the police maintain law and order, he asked them to install CCTV cameras in addition to the ones the police will install.

Mr. Singh said there would be adequate deployment of police officers with reflective jackets on New Year’s Eve at Koramangala. A similar meeting is lined up in Indiranagar on Friday.

Locals cry foul

Residents of areas such as Indiranagar, Koramangala and HSR Layout, who have been waging a battle against illegal commercialisation of their localities and turning them into party hubs, are an angry lot after the city police, on Thursday, attempted to promote their areas as alternatives to M.G. Road and Brigade Road for the New Year’s Eve revelry.

The police held a meeting with owners of eateries and pubs of Koramangala and HSR Layout on Thursday evening and discussed arrangements for the day. However, Nitin Sheshadri, a resident of Koramangala, said that none of the residents was informed.

Vijayan Menon, another resident and civic activist who fought a legal battle against commercialisation, described the police’s attempts to stagger New Year revellers to Koramangala and other areas as absurd. “I don’t think the police understand what they are doing. We are a residential area and have been fighting these illegal establishments for years now,” he said.

The police had, on Tuesday, organised a meeting in Indiranagar with residents and pub owners. However, residents refused to be part of the meeting when Deputy Commissioner of Police (East) Ajay Hilori allegedly backed out at the last minute. However, the residents of Indiranagar are prepared to resist any attempts at making the area a party hub. “By clamping down on the CBD this New Year’s Eve to avoid a repeat of last year’s attacks on women, the authorities are not solving any problems and are merely relocating them to residential areas such as Indiranagar and Koramangala. The miscreants will move to these areas and easily find their victims in areas left relatively unguarded. It is a disaster in the making,” a statement from ‘I Change Indiranagar’ said.

Aruna Newton of I Change Indiranagar said: “It is our backyard and not up for grabs. We will hold protests on New Year’s Eve.” She added that it was strange for the police to hold meetings with pub owners when most of those establishments were “illegal”.

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Printable version | May 27, 2020 11:38:11 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/bangalore/police-tell-pub-owners-make-koramangala-another-mg-road/article22321521.ece

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