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Parallel concert to Zubin Mehta event permitted

Srinagar, Sep 7, 2013 (IANS): 10:57 IST
A woman walks past graffiti against a concert by renowned orchestra conductor Zubin Mehta in Srinagar, India, Friday, Sept. 6, 2013. Kashmiri separatists have called for a strike on Sept. 7 to protest against a concert by Mehta in Srinagar, accusing the event of distracting the public away from the problems that Kashmir faces. AP photo
After much delay, authorities in Jammu and Kashmir have permitted a concert to be held parallel to that of India-born music conductor Zubin Mehta here Saturday.

"Finally, the authorities conveyed to us that we can go ahead with the 'Haqeeqat-e-Kashmir' (reality of Kashmir) concert in Srinagar's Municipal Park," Parvez Khurram, spokesman of the civil society initiative that is holding the parallel concert to oppose Zubin Mehta's concert, told IANS Saturday.

"The authorities imposed a rider on our plans, saying that since we are holding a parallel concert, we must hold it at the same time Zubin Mehta's concert is held," he said.

"We plan to hold the concert at noon as had been communicated to the authorities earlier.

"We believe the rider that we should coincide the concert's timing with Zubin Mehta's timing is because Chief Minister Omar Abdullah does not want international dignitaries and journalists to attend our concert. Well, let us see which concert proves to be the people's concert."

Zubin Mehta arrived in Srinagar Friday evening along with 100 other musicians of the Bavarian State Orchestra.

Mehta's "Ehsas-e-Kashmir" (Feel of Kashmir) concert will be held in the Shalimar Garden on the banks of the Dal lake in Srinagar at 5 p.m.

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