Hyderabad: The city heaved a sigh of relief on Sunday, the first day past the lifting of the Covid-19 lockdown in the state. Denizens in large numbers enjoyed the weekend holiday by stepping out of their homes, eating out, and enjoying themselves freely.

A popular location for the evening out, the Necklace Road renamed as P.V. Narasimha Rao Marg in honour of the former prime minister, was crowded after the long lull. Families with children were seen along the road after sundown, enjoying the cool breeze.

The evening also saw several bars and pubs in the city with customers, while road-side eateries and takeaway joints did brisk business.  

It was the Necklace Road where people moved about freely, apparently without a care about Covid-19 as a large number of the people were seen without masks.

One side of the entire stretch, as was the case with the Tank Bund Road, was lined with vehicles, and groups of people were moving about, snacking on foods purchased from vendors on push carts or from the small stalls that dot the Necklace Road.

Asked if the crowd seen on Sunday evening was 'normal' for a weekend, a cop on patrol said this Sunday was different. 'Log bandaron ke jhundon ke jaisa aagaye. Itney log kabhi nahin dekha (People have come in droves like bands of marauding monkeys. I have never seen such a crowd on a Sunday).'

From the Necklace Road, the crowds spilled over to the NTR Marg too.

The Tank Bund itself, with just one eatery and few push cart vendors, was less crowded than the Necklace Road. Families could be seen taking pictures, especially of the newly done-up sections, and enjoying themselves on the first night out in the city without any restrictions in a span of several weeks.
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