Bengaluru: As celebrations for Christmas and New Year eve began on Thursday, closure timings of pubs, bars and restaurants across the city have been extended up to 1 a.m. from 11 p.m. till January 1, a top police official said.
"In view of the week-long celebrations from Friday till next Thursday (January 1) for Christmas and New Year, pubs, bars, recreation clubs, restaurants and hotels in city limits will be allowed to remain open till 1 a.m. for serving their guests," Bengaluru Police Commissioner M.N. Megharik told reporters here.
Though pubs and bars remain open till 1 a.m. only on Friday and Saturday nights, restaurants, and eateries are permitted to serve food till 1 a.m. even on working days (Monday to Thursday).
"As the city attracts thousands of tourists and visitors during the week-long year-end holidays, we have agreed to extend night life by two hours only, keeping view their safety and security," Megharik said.
Declining representations for extending night life by four hours till 3 a.m. over the next seven days, the police chief said even the amended law does not permit pubs, bars and eateries to remain open after 1 a.m. as law and order had to be maintained at any cost.
"Night life till 1 a.m. is good enough from all angles, especially safety and public order. Policing and maintaining vigil all through the night across the city is an uphill task due to resource and manpower constraints," he said.
Police have directed owners of pubs, bars, restaurants, clubs and eateries to secure permission from state excise department for serving liquor to their customers till 1 a.m. till January 1.
"The order is not applicable to wine and liquor shops, which have to shut by 11 p.m. every night, as round the year," Megharik noted.
Playing of music has also been allowed till 1 a.m. on Thursday-Friday night for Christmas and Wednesday-Thursday night for New Year's eve.
Elaborate security arrangements have been made across the city to maintain peace and allow people to celebrate Christmas and revel in New Year eve.
"Eve-teasing, blaring loud music beyond 11 p.m., drunken driving and causing inconvenience to public will be sternly dealt with," Megharik added.