Maharastra Congress along with NCP on November 3 alleged BJP-led state government of deriving ‘political mileage’ out of the upcoming Coldplay concert, as it scheduled to be held just days before local bodies polls are to be held there.
People have been asking the British-rock band to host a concert in India for years and it was only after a recent visit that they agreed to it, and that too for a global charity event.
The money that would be raised from this concert would be donated to Global Citizen of India, which is part of the Global Citizen Festival.
But according to Congress’s Sanjay Nirupam the Maharastra state government is a strategic partner of the event and has also invited Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the event.
The concert is to be held on November 19 at Mumbai’s MMRDA ground and would also have many Bollywood celebrities present there.
Citing these facts, Nirupam, who is Mumbai Congress President, on November 3 called upon State Election Commissioner JS Saharia and demanded that the concert should be postponed to a date after the election as it will conflict with election code of conduct.
“The election code of conduct is in force in most of the state as polls to municipal councils and nagar panchayats will be held in four phases starting later this month. The government is an active participant and has invested in the event. Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has issued invitations for the event and the Global Citizen India website also mentions Maharashtra government as a strategic partner.”
Nirupam also pointed out that Maharastra CM Fadnavis heads MMRDA and has granted 75 per cent concession to the organizers so they can use their ground. He has even waived off the Entertainment tax for this event.
Nirupam thus believes that the government is investing in this event to “influence voters” and are likely to use it as a political platform.
He now wants the Election Commission to check if the concessions were given before the poll code came into force, and ensure that if the concert does take place on November 19, there are no political leaders present on the dais giving political speeches.
NCP too agrees with Nirupam and wants these concessions to be withdrawn since it was not a ‘policy decision’.