'The distance is an issue'

'The distance is an issue'

Looks like Bangalore is all set to rock with some of the biggest names in the music world performing in the City. The concerts have not only galvanised the music afficionados of Bangalore but those from the neighbouring cities as well.

The festive week ahead is double bonanza for rock fans. American thrash metal band ‘Slayer’ is performing on October 20 and Spanish singer Enrique Iglesias will be performing on October 21, followed by Carlos Santana on October 26. The concert venues have shifted from the Palace Grounds to Bhartiya City on Thanisandra Main Road, near the new airport and the Nice Grounds on Tumkur Road near Madhavapura Post.

The Bangalore City Police surely have a different challenge to deal with when it comes to providing adequate security, maintaining law and order and managing traffic around the new venues where the concerts are scheduled to be held.

Additional commissioner of police, T Suneel Kumar points out that the good thing is that the venue is away from the traffic-clogged areas of the City like Palace Grounds. He says it will be easier to manage traffic. He further explains that about 500 police personnel will be deputed in and around the concert venues to provide security in addition to ten frisking counters. 

On whether people would be checked for smuggling in drugs, alcohol and other objectionable material, Suneel says, “This year I will depute 50 to 60 policemen in plain clothes inside the concert venue, exclusively to check for drug peddling. If people are caught selling or consuming drugs they will be booked under the Narcotics Act.”

About inebriated music fans, Suneel observes, “I can’t stop people from consuming alcohol but if those drunk are found misbehaving, during the concert they will be booked under the Karnataka Police Act for public nuisance.”

The DNA Networks has tied up with the Bangalore Traffic Police and the law and order wing of the police to arrange adequate security. “In addition to a fleet of bouncers, there will be double barricading to hold the crowd, we have also put in place a fire force, medical squad and paramedics for emergency cases,” informs the spokesperson of DNA Networks and adds, “we have also tied up with certain cab services, in case people, who don’t have their own transport would want to use cabs to get back home.”  

The security cover for the Enrique Iglesias concert at Nice Grounds on Tumkur Road near Madhavapura Post, is a different ball game altogether. D Prakash, SP Bangalore Rural District, says that according to the organisers an estimated 4,000 people are expected to turn up for the concert. “We will depute about 100 policemen or more depending on the crowd. My men will man the anti sabotage counters where people will be thoroughly checked,” he informs.  

Regular concert goers are not happy with the change of venue and say the distance is an issue.

Vivek Kumar Rai, a tech support with HP who is a regular at all the international concerts in the City, says, “The venues are too far and the distance is definitely a concern. We usually travel by bikes and if our female friends are accompanying us then we make sure we drop them back.”  Shantanu Singh, an employee with Bosch too feels the concert venues are far. “But for international bands, I think it is worth travelling that distance. It’s best to make travel arrangements, just to be safe,” he concludes.

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