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Phone smashed and beaten up, another incident in Bangalore

In another incident of intolerance from Bangalore, the earlier being at Foxtot read here, a musician was beaten by a gang of 10-15 unidentified people at an event at Phoenix Marketcity mall because his band could not sing songs in Kannada.

Musication, a Bangalore based band that has been performing at events doing popular covers, performed at Phoenix Marketcity on Friday. After the show, which took place inside the mall premises, when the band started packing their instruments, an intoxicated man approached and asked the band to sing Kannada songs. Considering the man’s drunken state, the band obliged and played (and sang) one Kannada song without their instruments plugged in. Not getting the satisfaction, the man told them to perform with the full sound on stage to which the band replied that he will have to check with the sound engineer present if that is possible or not. Hearing this the man picked up the mic stand and attacked one of the members. While the attack was blocked with the band member’s guitar, Anubhav Siddharth (in the picture) pulled out his phone camera to document the incident. Seeing this, a group of men approached Anubhav, snatched his phone and started to kick and throw punches at him. As Anubhav was wearing his spectacles, the blows on his face shattered the glass and injured his eye. The gang also smashed his phone into pieces and then flee the location. While the incident took place, no security personnel were present at the location. Arriving after, they tried to pull the CCTV footage from a nearby store and identified one out of the group of attackers. Allegedly, Phoenix Marketcity’s team has also asked Anubhav’s fellow band member to pull the Facebook post down which talks about the incident.

Recalling the details of the incident, Anubhav says

“I have been in a state of shock for the past couple of days. Music is a language of peace. When did it turn into violence? For young budding artists, this incident is certainly a discouraging act. Personally, I don’t feel safe to perform on an open stage anymore. If big venues like this cannot provide security, where is it safe for us to perform?”.

On approaching the mall’s management for a comment, they released the following statement:

“We acknowledge and condemn such untoward incident. Phoenix Marketcity is a destination of repute for events and performances and provides a stage & audience to artists ranging from aspiring bands to legendary performers in a safe & secured environment. Also, In this case, our security was very much present during the band performance, which was praised very well by the audience and performers were also happy.
We have noticed all the unpleasant news in detail from our social media channels. The incident reported happened after the band performance was over and due to personal remarks leading to physical altercation between 2 parties. Our security which was relaxed after the performance had to rush back and intervene, however the altercation had already happened. It is been advised to every event organizer that artists should not get into direct arguments with audience. Irrespective, being a responsible organization and keeping our respect and love for music & art, we apologize for such an experience and will work on further improving our internal security arrangements, to avoid such inopportune incidents in future.
We sincerely apologize and hope to see all of you here again!”

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