HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
KATHMANDU: Police officials together with local administration and businesspeople concerned are dwelling on extending night business hours in Kathmandu. This comes as night business owners have been repeatedly requesting police to allow them to operate their services for a few hours more to serve their clients, including tourists.
SSP Jaya Bahadur Chand, in-charge of Metropolitan Police Range, Hanumandhoka, informed that Kathmandu District Administration and MPR have held three rounds of talks with business owners to find ways to allow night business to run a few hours after midnight. Currently, night businesses (dance bars, hotels, restaurants and pubs) are allowed to run until midnight, as per the DAO order.
“We want to see businesses running round-the-clock, but this is not possible without enhanced security in the capital where restaurants, pubs, hotels and lodges are becoming safe haven for criminals,” he argued.
SSP Chand expressed confidence that a decision would soon be taken on extending the business hours of the night industry. “Talks are under way. Let us hope that all will end well,” he said.
In a bid to fight crime, MPR enforced a month-long Special Security Operation yesterday. This has been seen as a first step towards extending operating hours for night businesses. “Reliable and effective security is the need of the hour before making any decision on night businesses,” he said. As many as 2,460 police personnel — both in uniform and in civvies — have fanned out across Kathmandu to enforce the Special Security Operation.
They have been tasked with collecting intelligence about suspicious activities, identifying crime suspects, analysing intelligence and responding to the situation as per requirements, especially at night.
According to MPR, police have been carrying out surprise checks in dance bars, discotheques, pool houses, hotels, lodges, massage parlours, pubs cyber cafes and CD/VCD shops to see whether they are operating ‘decently’ or not.