Noted Carnatic singer TM Krishna has responded after his upcoming Delhi concert was cancelled in wake of threats issued by certain Hindu right-wing trolls. Speaking to ANI, Krishna said, "Words like Urban Naxal, presstitute, anti-Indian are created by people who don’t know what democracy is. They want to scare you and make other people angry at you. They are using these reasons today to stop a festival."
Krishna was supposed to perform at a concert as a part of the two-day 'Dance and Music in the Park' festival at Nehru Park in New Delhi's Chanakyapuri area on 17 and 18 November, has been called off. The event was being organised jointly by the Airports Authority of India (AAI) and the cultural body, SPIC-MACAY.
AAI took to Twitter on 14 November to announce that the event had been postponed:
We would like to inform that due to some urgent engagements, 'Dance and Music in the Park' programme jointly organized by #AAI and @spicmacay, scheduled for 17th & 18th November, 2018 has been postponed and new dates would be shared shortly. Inconvenience caused is regretted. — Airports Authority of India (@AAI_Official) November 14, 2018
Later in the day, the Delhi government stepped in and offered to host him in the city. Delhi Culture Minister Manish Sisodia's office reached out to Krishna and extended support, as per a tweet put out by News18.com.
#JustIn | Delhi Govt has reached out to TM Krishna (@tmkrishna) and has said they will be happy to host him. Delhi Culture Minister Manish Sisodia's (@msisodia) office reached out to TM Krishna after AAI (@AAI_official) canceled his concert. | #TMKrishnaSilenced pic.twitter.com/nlniPBLfpb
— News18 (@CNNnews18) November 15, 2018
While the exact reason for the cancellation was not revealed in the Twitter post, a report by The Indian Express suggests that the organisers at AAI had some internal issues. "We have some issues. Some exigency has come up and we are not free that day. Whatever note we have given in the media, that is all; there is nothing more I want to say on this," says AAI Chairman Guruprasad Mohapatra, as quoted in the Indian Express report.
Following the cancellation of the concert, there were speculations that threats issued to Krishna by several Hindu right-wing trolls might be the reason behind it. On 9 November, AAI had put out an invitation tweet mentioning Krishna as one of the key performers at the event. Krishna reportedly retweeted the same and, as per the Indian Express report, that led to major trolling by the right-wing. They accused the organisers of misusing public money to sponsor Krishna's concert tagging him “anti-India”, “converted bigot” and “Urban Naxal” to name a few. They also tagged Piyush Goel, Minister of Railways, Coal and Corporate Affairs, and Suresh Prabhu, Minister of Civil Aviation, questioning them about Krishna's presence in the concert, adds the same Indian Express report.
This is not the first time that Krishna's performances have been targetted by trolls and later cancelled. This year in August, the Sri Siva Vishnu Temple in Maryland, USA had cancelled his September concert, after trolls accused Krishna of violating the sanctity of Carnatic music by singing Christian hymns in the name of Jesus Christ. This happened right after a week of him speaking vehemently against the attempts of right-wing fundamentalists to communalise Carnatic music after musician OS Arun cancelled an event titled 'Yesuvin Sangama Sangeetham', citing personal reasons. Arun was criticised by many social media users — mainly the Hindu right-wing activists — for collaborating with T Samuel Joseph (Shyaam) on this.
Updated Date: Nov 15, 2018 18:45 PM