Three days of law, order and ‘booze-less’ life!4 min read
It is not vey often that you see everything close down in and around an almost B-Level University. Life at a full stop is a very rare scene in Manipal and Manipal University (MU). People who have studied in MU and passed out of it would not believe the words of the present students if they told them that MU closed down for three full days!
Yes, miracles happen and in their own rare way! Manipal closed down from the 30th September till the 2nd of October. Following the orders from the government, all liquor shops, pubs, clubs and restaurants were to be closed on these three days. Life came to a halt not only to people who consume alcohol but also for people who wanted to eat out.
This happened post Ayodhya Verdict where people were asked to stay indoors as section 144 was enforced. “When we can no longer blame things on liquor, or war’s reaction, we may begin to suspect that human nature itself is a little faulty,” said some author and it stands to be true. The human nature has seen a lot of changes post the verdict. The verdict ‘vacation’ was followed by Gandhi Jayanthi-the official ‘dry day.’ All these put together got a minimal amount of restriction on the liquor stores and the pubs and discs of Manipal.
When asked about the verdict and its consequences many liquor and pub store owners refused to open up or comment. Some of them however gave vague comments about it. “I don’t think people really care about the verdict. I did run a loss though and it would take me atleast two weeks to recover it, maybe more,” said Sharad, Manager of Sky Lounge. He also adds that people came thronging back on Sunday. Some wanted to dance away while some wanted their own favourite liquor back.
The losses incurred list is long. Even the co-owner at DeeTee, Amit Kumar Shetty said, “I have to pay government taxes and even pay salaries to my employees. These holidays don’t count as casual leave either.”
There is an annual tax that is to be paid by all pub and disk owners. Holidays are included in it but not wholly described due to which the three day holiday fell as a loss to many owners. The complete tax of all three days had to be given from the pockets of the owners. One of the pub owners who wished to remain anonymous said that they have to pay approximately Rs. 1400 a day and Rs. 5 lakh annually which is to be paid for the number of days that they run. Also if the pub owners provide its customers with bus facility a part of the tax is exempted on that too. The verdict came in as a very dear affair, so much so that some of them had to cancel their orders too. Most others just postponed it. However there was atleast two days loss which they had to bear.
Students have their own perspective in this matter. “I don’t think liquor shops should be closed in the name of religion or God,” an MIT student, who wished to be anonymous, was quoted as saying.
“I think if I would have filed an application, even I would get a piece of land. The decision was more like any Pachayati decision not that I would say it was good or bad,” said Krishna Prasad Hegde.
Not only were the liquor shops, restaurants and pubs affected even the general life was. People preferred staying indoors. Better still many students left to their natives or hometowns to spend time with family and friends. It came in as a refreshing break to them.
Manager of Blue Waters, Jaganath, however said that his business did not run into any loss. He dint notice much change in the attitude of people either. Instead he said that people were in fact happy about things running in action again.
“I thought things would fall apart further. Given that the Common wealth Games were to begin from the 3rd October, I predicted chaos. But things went smooth. And for students, we thought we would study, while we just willed time away,” quips Akashay Pariti, a third year Bio-tech student from MIT.
India is a free country and people need to accept the decision of the verdict. People who don’t accept this they have moved to the Supreme Court, others continue to quip, while Manipal is back in action!