Bangaloreans protest ban on dance, music in pubs

August 10th, 2008 - 10:18 pm ICT by IANS  

Bangalore, Aug 10 (IANS) Playwright and Jnanpeeth Award winner Girish Karnad Sunday joined a protest here against ban on live music and dance in the famed pubs and discos of India’s IT hub. A group of about 100 people - regular disco-goers, singers, disc jockeys - carried placards saying “Give us our freedom”, “Bengaluru bleeding” and “Don’t kill creativity”, and protested the ban imposed by the police on Aug 3.

“It is tyranny of the police. It is against every artiste,” Karnad said at the protest.

The police order says live music performances are not allowed in pubs and discos. However, recorded music can be played.

The police justify their decision saying they are following rules which prohibit live music and dance in any public place serving liquor.

There is also controversy over the closing timings of pubs and restaurants. A 1976 order had set the 11.30 p.m. deadline for business establishments but this was relaxed in 1987 to allow medical shops, hotels and some other establishments to remain open much later than that.

Bangalore civic authorities have been demanding that pubs and restaurants be allowed to function till 1.30 a.m. in view of the growing expatriate, tourist and floating population in the city. The police are resisting this, saying it will push up the crime graph.

A committee of officials has been set up to consider the conflicting views of the civic and police authorities and suggest a way out.

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