A few days back I heard that the PYC Gymkhana located in the Deccan Gymkhana area in Pune has stopped serving alcohol. This came as a pleasant surprise and compeltely against recent trends in Indian cities.
Pune Youth Club (PYC) Hindu Gymkhana was formed in 1934 and for over 70 years has been a sports organization. PYC was once about cricket, badminton, table tennis and tennis.
A few years back PYC decided to build a huge new building. The building is ugly and intimidating but I was overall optimistic as I felt it would help sports in Pune city.
However cricket became the first victim of the new PYC with no matches being held anymore at the once popular PYC ground. The organization soon started to morph from a sports body to an elitist club. My first visit to the new building was especially disappointing as a majority of the building it seemed was used for the restaurant and bar, card rooms and community halls. I saw hardly anyone in a sports attire. There were only fancy cars and potential customers at the restaurant and bar.
So the news of PYC not serving alcohol any more was very heartening. A sports body indirectly promoting drinking was obviously improper. I do not smoke or drink, so am not affected by this change but I hope that even those who enjoy their drink at the PYC will see that not serving alcohol at a sports organization is the right step forward. There are a sufficient number of restaurants in the city who would be more than happy to serve alcohol all day.
So I congratulate whoever played a role in this change at PYC and I hope this has an effect on other sports bodies and keeps them focused on sports instead of becoming social and networking centers.
A burgeoning middle class with an ever growing disposable income, is bound to cause such problems in all spheres of life. Pune PYC here is just a test case as the same problem I am sure is present in 1000s of organizations across India.