Hyderabad: Lamakaan, the city’s only liberal cultural space, is all set to host plays and reopen fully for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic began last year. What’s more, its canteen, known for tasty and affordable food, is also fully functional now, serving both lunch and dinner as earlier.
Until now, Lamakaan was only serving snacks to patrons, who were only allowed to sit for thirty minutes at a time. With the restrictions easing up now, looks like things are finally going back to normal at the space, which many from Hyderabad had been missing.
According to a source, the first event, screening of a children’s film, will be held there on November 21. And those who are interested in booking the space can email the management at email@example.com. Moreover, the place is now also open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. everyday, unlike earlier when it would shut down by 9 p.m.
Siasat.com had earlier reported in December that Lamakaan’s management (trust) might begin parcel services of its canteen, which is known for its affordable yet delicious snacks and food.
Last year, Lamakaan’s management decided to not conduct its annual events in March, during its anniversary month, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Post the lockdown that was imposed, even as places began opening one-by-one, Lamakaan continued to remain shut. It reopened partially before and after the second COVID-19 wave. It is only now that it is fully reopening. Masks are mandatory inside.
The closure of Lamakaan meant that Hyderabad was missing its round-the-clock cultural and political discussions, many of which the cultural space used to host regularly. Known for being a liberal space, it has essentially been a platform for artists, and also served as a centre for engaging discussions or subjects ranging from politics to current events.
Pre-COVID-19, Lamakaan had hosted a series of events while protests were ongoing against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), which drew lakhs of protests from people around the world. It also held a discussion on the National Register of Citizen (NRC) that is being carried out in Assam.
Started in 2010 by friends Ashhar Farhan, Humera Ahmed, Elahe Hiptoola and Biju Matthew, Lamakaan is now a place that one looks to for meaningful discussions on important subjects and also for events on culture. It could also be considered as a precursor to co-working spaces we have in Hyderabad today.