METALLICA Delhi Concert Organizers Released On Bail

According to HindustanTimes.com, four officials of promoter DNA Networks, which is accused of cheating fans in connection with METALLICA's canceled October 28, 2011 concert in Gurgaon (a suburb of Delhi), India, have been granted bail.

Police arrested Rajesh Kumar, the general manager of DNA Networks, and his colleagues Umesh Chinara, Ashok Singh and Savio Faleiro on reported fraud charges. The court granted them bail against surety bonds of Rs 30,000 each and all the accused have been asked not to leave the country without court's permission while the case is pending.

In their bail application, the organizers countered the allegation that the concert cancelation was orchestrated by them and said the event was called off at the eleventh hour because of the unruly behaviour of some fans. "DNA Entertainment Network had made all necessary arrangements for the show. The show couldn't happen because some fans broke the barricade," the petition said.

The organizers argued that they had already paid Rs 84,77,340 as entertainment tax to the Haryana government in advance and had submitted Rs 1 crore bank security. Also, the event management firm has already paid more than Rs 5.60 crore as refund for tickets to the fans.

A representative for DNA Networks told Pollstar that the cancelation of METALLICA's performance at the Indian Formula 1 motor racing Grand Prix show was caused by an "unruly" section of the crowd climbing over safety barriers and damaging the stage set.

Karuna Prithvi from the DNA's press department told Pollstar it's difficult to explain what sparked the fuss because "it was all so quick."

Prithvi said the company always has barriers in place for its shows and the problem was caused when fans broke through them.

She said unruly fans "vandalized and destroyed" a lot of stage equipment, which meant it was impossible to fix it and get permission for a new show within 24 hours.

Other media reports, however, claimed fans became unruly when the gates opened several hours later than the scheduled opening times. Still other media reports said fans became angry after DNA sold more tickets than the venue's estimated 30,000 capacity and because the organizers failed to inform ticket holders of the cancelation.

METALLICA issued a statement on its web site, explaining it was "deeply disappointed" about the gig's cancellation. The band added, "We arrived in Delhi on Friday very excited and ready to play our first show ever in India at the F1 Rocks concert. However, immediately at the end of our afternoon press conference at a hotel near the venue, we were notified that there was a serious question as to whether the show could proceed with regard to the safety of the concert audience. And our first and foremost concern is always for the safety of you, the fans."

METALLICA performed on October 30 in Bangalore, India, at the Palace Grounds before an estimated 35,000 fans. METALLICA frontman James Hetfield told the crowd, "India has been a life-changing experience for us."

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