‘Sunburn Goa’ organisers unhappy about delayed permission

Friday, December 24, 2010

PANAJI - The organiser of the electronic music festival Sunburn Goa has lambasted the state government for waiting until the last moment to grant permission for the three-day event that is scheduled to begin Monday.

“It’s really unfortunate that we do not known until the 23rd (Dec) about permissions for an entertainment show on Monday (Dec 27),” Harindra Singh, managing director of Percept, the agency which is organising the event, told IANS after meeting with Chief Minister Digambar Kamat at his official residence.

Sunburn Goa is billed as Indian biggest electronic music festival and Harindra Singh said that despite being an event of such top billing, the mandatory permissions were simply not forthcoming from the authorities in Goa in time.

Harindra Singh met Kamat, a day after home minister Ravi Naik had questioned the legality of the music festival, being held at Candolim beach 15 kms from here.

“I have not received any file seeking permission for Sunburn (Goa) festival. The festival cannot happen without a nod from the state home ministry. All beach parties have to take permission from the home ministry,” Naik had said on Wednesday.

But Harindra Singh says necessary applications had been made to the respective authorities and were “being processed”.

“The event has been planned from January. We have had bookings for the show from January. I met the chief minister today because it is my duty as an organiser to convey to the authorities, that everything will be legally followed at the event,” said Harindra Singh.

Sunburn Goa, which is to run till Dec 29, is expected to see some of the top names in the world of electronic music like Paul Van Dyk, Ferry Corsten and Dave Seaman.

The festival attracts thousands of revellers, mostly youngsters from urban India, who flock to Goa for the event.

Responding to queries on the death of 23-year-old Bangalore girl Meha Bahuguna at the event site last year due to drug abuse, Harindra Singh said: “We have six-layer security screenings to ensure that no one carries anything illegal to the event. There is no chance anyone can carry any drugs there.”

Three civil society groups demanded that the state administration should not permit the festival this year, because it gave Goa and the beach village of Candolim, which hosts it, a “bad name”.

Meanwhile, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) state president Laxmikant Parsenkar Thursday demanded a ban on Sunburn Goa, claiming that the festival promoted alcohol and drugs amongst teenagers.

–Indo Asian News Service

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