Islamabad - People place orders for Sehri and devour Chai and snacks in the meantime. The seats and bar stools are occupied by Sehri time and the place is buzzing with activity. But what makes these people abandon the aromatic Parathas and omelettes at home in the wee hours of the night?

Saad Hamid, who had won free coupons for Sehri at a cafe through a Facebook contest, said “I was surprised to see that the cafe was packed, even around the pre-dawn time”. For some, it is the thrill of enjoying the only month that affords restaurants and cafes to remain open so late in the night. “The feeling one gets from a midnight hangout during Ramazan in inexplicable. Going out with friends for Sehri is an experience in itself,” said Khawar Naeem. He also enjoys going to Pindi for Sehri. “I love the drive and the ambience, especially in Kartarpura,” he said.

Kartarpura is a downtown neighbourbood near Banni Chowk which offers strictly Desi Sehri items including Paaye, Nihari, Channas, Parathay, Kulchay, Doodh Patti and Lassi.

Similarly, Iysha Munir feels that when people stay up till Sehri, they just need something to do. “Those who go for Taraweeh prayers don’t get time to go out for Iftar so it is more convenient to go out for Sehri,” she said. “Sehri culture is becoming more festive as people are going

beyond their dining rooms for good food. It is a wonderful thing

and gives us more to look forward during Ramazan,” said Pashmina Ahmed.

On the other hand, Nuzhat Saadia believes that it is best to have Sehri at home. “It is more of a status symbol to eat out at Sehri now, especially as the timings are so close to midnight,” she added.

She said that people stay up and then go out rather than stumbling out of bed for a quick meal like they used to during the good old days when Ramazan fell in the colder months.