THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Do not loiter around auditoriums in the city. Even if you are an invitee, chances are high that you may be humiliated by the staff of the auditorium or members of the wedding party mistaking you for a party crasher.
Marriages in the city these days are suffering at the hands of party crashers, who march to dining tables and have a merry time at the expense of others.
Shaji Khan, manager of Muslim Association Hall auditorium, says that the legacy of party crashers can be traced well back to the 1970s, when he joined as manager of the hall. According to Khan, who coined the term ‘Oonanmar’ for the class, the issue has never been so severe before. Initially, it was the odour and flavour of the food that lured the crashers. But now, complaints are springing up accusing the party crashers of theft.
“A family from Kayamkulam came for a marriage carrying 20 sovereigns of gold along with them fearing that someone might loot the house in their absence. But, finally, the bag was stolen by someone during the ceremony itself,” he says.
Other auditorium managers are also of the opinion that the menace should be curbed at the earliest.
“Earlier, it was the students who turned up to crash parties for sumptuous food and some for the mere kick. But now, the role has been taken over by ‘professional groups’, comprising mostly youngsters having a good financial background. You cannot identify them from their demeanour and dressing style. They appear sophisticated, often arriving in their own vehicles. But the way they turn gluttons at the dinner table sets them apart from others,” says the manager of a renowned auditorium on condition of anonymity.
AK (name changed), has been an active party crasher since college days. He is now seriously pondering whether to continue with his ‘hobby’ or not. ”The thrill is lost. And some crooked minds have joined the business. They have no sentiments and really torment the wedding organisers. So, we have decided to quit,” he says.
He also says that most of the current party crashers possess criminal inclinations and come to dine after a booze party.
Most of the families who book auditoriums are feeling the heat as they are unsure how many people would come in addition to those they had invited.
“Normally, for every hundred invitees, you can expect 10 party crashers. In the case of small functions like an engagement, we can identify who are the invited guests and who are not. But in big programmes like a marriage, we are clueless about the presence of party crashers. Nevertheless, the issue is appalling to the caterers and the wedding party alike,” says Syed Ameen, manager of a leading catering firm based at Nanthancode.
The venue managers are all equivocal in admitting that party crashers are a big menace. But many of them differ when it comes to barring the crashers. Leen Lopez, manager of Bishop Pereira Hall, feels that none should be denied food, even if they are uninvited.