KATHMANDU: A haven in the midst of the mad melee of the capital, Bhrikuti Mandap

Garden, has emerged a popular dating spot for couples of late.

“The garden is the perfect place for a date, especially for those who can’t foot exorbitant restaurant bills,” a 14-year old school-boy, who bunked school to have a rendezvous with his lover said. In fact, it saves the dating couples from the ignominy of having to spend hours in an expensive eatery, he added.

However, the garden has also earned an ill repute for encouraging illicit love affairs. “Public display of love is an eyesore in the beautiful garden. The young couples in the garden sometime even put adults to shame,” shared a visitor. He opined that the Bhrikuti Mandap Board Office (BMBO) ought to impose a ban on such activities in the garden.

Bal Bahadur Swar, chief of BMBO, however, was sympathetic towards the lovers. “We are against such restriction,” he said, adding that the garden also attracted the elderly who came to relive the memories of their adolescence. “We are trying our best to make the garden city-friendly and the government should also chip in to make our efforts worthwhile,” he said. The police keep round-the-clock vigil in the garden, spread over an area of 193 ropanis.

“The police arrests couples, who do not maintain minimum standards

of decency in the garden. Furthermore, the security guards in the garden

inform the police, if

visitors indulge in illicit activities,” said Swar.