Busi­ness has de­clined and party-go­ers are feel­ing less re­laxed. But brave faces re­main

Hindustan Times (Patna) - Live - - Front Page - Ab­hi­nav Verma ab­hi­

Re­cent re­ports that Hauz Khas Vil­lage might be a tar­get of ter­ror­ist at­tacks and that there would be a ban on ladies’ nights have cre­ated a sit­u­a­tion of chaos in the posh party des­ti­na­tion. HKV, the go-to place for rev­ellers and for­eign­ers in the city, is fac­ing a lock­down. In­creased se­cu­rity pres­ence be­cause of ter­ror threats has led to a de­cline in the num­ber of peo­ple vis­it­ing the many es­tab­lish­ments there.

“Such sit­u­a­tions lead to a de­crease in cus­tomers. But I don’t think there’s any­thing to panic about. There’s a ter­ror threat ev­ery day now, and that’s the sad re­al­ity of our lives. The only thing we can do is carry on with our lives and stay vig­i­lant,” says Joy Singh, owner of Raasta restau­rant.

Ra­chit Goil, owner of Crav­ity restau­rant, says that while walk-in pa­trons are fewer now, food or­der­ing has in­creased. “It’s true that peo­ple don’t feel safe com­ing to Hauz Khas, but that’s the case ev­ery­where. We shouldn’t stop liv­ing our life the way we want to,” he adds.

Stu­dents who would ear­lier hang out at HKV are crest­fallen — and very cau­tious. The party mood is not so up­beat now.

“Ear­lier, when we used to go out par­ty­ing or chill­ing with friends, we felt care­free. But, that’s not the case any­more, es­pe­cially in Hauz Khas. We still go there but we are ex­tremely cau­tious. I never go alone. I al­ways go with my group,” says Soumya Joshi, 19.

Samiha Singh, also 19, feels braver. She says, “Delhi has al­ways been on the radar for ter­ror­ists. In­creased se­cu­rity is okay. But I feel one should not cre­ate panic.”

Shubhi Singh, a 22-yearold pro­fes­sional, says that the threat per­cep­tion has made HKV even less of a des­ti­na­tion for her. “Ev­ery­body knows that Hauz Khas Vil­lage is not a safe place, es­pe­cially for a woman. Now, it’s fac­ing a ter­ror threat and that would make it worse. I used to go [there] ear­lier, but now I rarely go.” She adds that the po­lice are just do­ing their job.

Restau­ra­teurs, RWA and the po­lice need to work to­gether to en­sure that peo­ple’s free­dom to en­joy is not taken away AB­HISHEK MARWAHA, OWNER, HI5 RESTAU­RANT

HKV is not a safe place, es­pe­cially for a woman. Now, it’s fac­ing a ter­ror threat and that makes it worse SHUBHI SINGH, VIS­I­TOR

These war­mon­gers want us scared and locked in­side our own home and we shouldn’t let them JOY SINGH, RESTAU­RA­TEUR



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