Dazzling disco lights, raging electro house music and energetic young men and women dancing their heart away with gay abandon— that will be an old scene to remember during the upcoming New Year celebrations. All those who are planning a fun night on New Year eve, brace yourselves! Your plans have to take a back seat as the city administration has come up with an announcement of stringent rules for hotels organising special events on the night of December 31. Putting a dampener on the plans of party-goers, the fun night plans have come crashing down after the Kochi City Police took such a drastic step in view of the increase in drug abuse cases.
According to police, parties that can be enjoyed by people of all age groups — from children to elderly — will be permitted in hotels on the New Year eve and those should wind up by 12.30 am in order to facilitate the safe journey of party-goers. Parties and events will have police presence and will be monitored through CCTV cameras. Surprisingly, most DJs and event organisers are supportive of the whole move. DJ Shekhar, known for his lead role in Da Thadiya, offered wholehearted support to the new ruling. “I totally support the decision. We have to ensure that our city is free of anti-social elements.”
Arnet Xavier from Browbeats says, “DJs are facilitators of good music for niche crowd. Though the entry of minors is restricted, this does not affect the niche crowd who would like to celebrate the NYE in the right way. This is a sort of warning for people who have planned the other way around. Already, there are wrong illusions about parties; this might change it well and for good.” DJ Savyo comments, “It is necessary for parties to take safety measures. This move has to be supported for a healthy way of partying.” Harish Babu, who conducts major DJ events in the city also welcomes the move. “The commissioner has clearly stated that there won’t be any ban on parties or celebrations, but if restrictions are necessary for public safety, we abide by those.”
Well, for social entrepreneur and party-goer Sobha Ashwin, such hardcore restrictions have caused disappointment. “New Year is the most looked forward party time of the year. Time restrictions are really sad. Even if it's for safety, restricting your time to celebrate is not approvable. As adults, we know what is right and wrong and how to set limits in our level of fun,” she clarifies. Arvee, DJ and RJ says, “The police agenda is quite clear, some pose a question if it is a ruse for not being able to stop drug flow into the city and blame it on nightlife and clubbing.