OML Team Beaten Up At Pune Enrique Iglesias Concert: Read Full Statement
19 October 2012
It all started with a tweet.
Late afternoon on October 18, Pentagram lead singer and Bollywood composer Vishal Dadlani tweeted about Only Much Louder (OML) organisers and volunteers, including CEO Vijay Nair being beaten up at the Pune leg of the Enrique Iglesias tour. The event occurred just before the concert was due to begin at around 8.30pm at Amanora Park Town. The concert itself was a roaring success and went off without a hitch, pulling in a crowd of over 7000 attendees.
As more and more details have become clear with regard to the incident that took place at the gates (including what we've seen in a video interview on NDTV with Vijay Nair and Bobby Talwar), a nasty undercurrent has unfortunately overshadowed the fact that it was otherwise a well orchestrated and safe event for everyone in attendance.
Over the last 24 hours, music lovers and industry alike have shown solidarity, condemning the unnecessary violence. Although allegations suggest that it was 'police brutality', we'd like to clear up (despite our f*uck the police Facebook post) that this incident was the result of one singular Assistant Commissioner of Police who was acting alone. A full statement was issued by OML late last night. Here it is in full:
"At the Enrique Iglesias concert last night when the event was on and running smoothly at approximately 8.30pm a certain Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) wanted to bring in guests of his who did not have appropriate passes/wrist bands to enter the event.
This certain ACP was also given substantial number of complimentary passes for his guests to be present at the event at the Platinum gate Rs 8000/- much before the event.
The organisers had already let a few dozen guests of this ACP into the platinum area without any passes or checks since the ACP was not allowing anyone to even check them.
When this ACP came with yet another group of his guests to be let into the event without any passes or wrist bands he was asked “how many more guests does he have.” At that moment he was also requested to proceed into the venue, however without any additional guests. On hearing this, the ACP started hitting the organiser. He also had a stick in his hand with which he hit the organiser. Mr Vijay Nair has bruises on his back and head Mr Manish Chandani has bruises all over his back and on his leg, Mr Rajesh Balpande has a ruptured ear drum and has difficulty hearing from the left side and has his left hand is in a cast from being beaten with a stick.
If not for the Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) and other authorities that were present on the scene this could have been a lot worse and gone completely out of control with the ACP assaulting the organisers. We are thankful to the DCP and the other senior authorities who managed to control this ACP who would have otherwise hurt a lot more people for no reason whatsoever.
Mr Girish Talwar later went to the Hadapsar Police station and submitted a written application at approximately 2am which was received and stamped by the concerned officer on duty with the assurance that due action would be taken.
In the last 10 years of organising events we have never had such an experience or come across an individual who has mishandled a situation so badly."