Grammy Award-winning DJ and music producer David Guetta’s concert in Bengaluru on Thursday was called off amid conflicting claims from the organisers and the police.
The event’s organisers initially claimed police had denied permission for the event at the Supernova Arena, and hinted at the law and order situation in the Karnataka capital following the alleged mass molestation of women on New Year’s Eve. Police rubbished the claim.
In a statement, Karan Singh, CEO of Sunburn (a Percept intellectual property), said, “Due to the present law & order situation in Bengaluru following the events that transpired around New Year’s Eve, the authorities have recommended against holding the David Guetta concert scheduled today in the city.”
The police denied having made any such recommendation. Amit Singh, superintendent of police of Bengaluru Rural, said, “They approached me on January 10 for permission for the concert, which was to be held on January 12. I asked them to reschedule because polls for agricultural produce marketing committees are being held.”
Singh added that while there was no set procedure for when permission can to be sought, the organisers “should have at least approached a month ago if they wanted to hold a concert where thousands were expected to gather”.
Bengaluru police commissioner Praveen Sood said, “Nobody approached me for any permission. They have brought up the alleged events of New Year’s Eve just to gain publicity.”
Incidentally, Bengaluru police are still looking for evidence of mass molestation on MG Road on New Year’s Eve.
Later in the day, Harindra Singh, managing director and chairman of Percept Ltd, said, “We did approach the Bangalore administration about a week, ten days ago. At that time, we were advised that the venue we had chosen was not appropriate and we needed to look for another venue. At that time, we had approached the city administration. We looked at another venue and that venue was under another police jurisdiction, the rural police.
“We approached Amit Singh, Superintendent of Police of Bengaluru Rural, early this Monday. We’ve been calling their office for required permissions. We were informed only yesterday that the permission cannot be granted. There was no reason assigned, we assumed that if police is refusing permission, it’s not incorrect to assume that it could be because of law and order.”
He added, “It’s not within our rights to ask them for a reason. And they are not duty bound to explain to us ‘why not’. We asked for permission, they denied, and we assumed it was to do with law and order. It was subsequently clarified, and today we realised that there are elections. We did not know of the elections. We are right now proactively working with them and we have absolutely no complaint. Police are responsible for our safety and security, if they say do it, we’d do it, when they say don’t do it, we wouldn’t do it.”
The organisers said the event would be rescheduled. Electronic dance music star Guetta is on a four-city tour, which was to begin from Bengaluru and move to Mumbai, Hyderabad and New Delhi.
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