Academy Award-winning music composer AR Rahman has come under fire after his concert 'Marakuma Nenjam' at Adityaram Palace in Chennai's Paniyur went downhill as several cited mismanagement from the organisers end. A score of concertgoers shared their plight on social media and claimed that it was a stampede-like situation where women were molested, children separated from their parents, and senior citizens collapsed as angry fans were stopped from entering despite having tickets.
Amid all the hullabaloo, Rahman has remained mum since Sunday night. He has been sharing posts of fans facing difficulty at the concert, but nowhere does he speak of the fiasco, let alone apologise for the same. On the contrary, the organisers ACTC Events took to X, formerly known as Twitter and stated, “Grateful to Chennai and the legendary @arrahman Sir! The incredible response, the overwhelming crowd made our show a massive success. Those who couldn't attend on overcrowding, Our sincere apologies. We take full responsibility and accountable. We are with you. #MarakkumaNenjam”
This statement was simply reposted by Rahman on X. He also reposted visuals that mention, “Sad to see a beautiful concert marred by some unfortunate events. Hope everyone has returned back home safely. We went inside with a group of 10 much early and didn’t have any issues except the delay while coming out.”
Rahman also posted a message for those who purchased tickets and wrote, "Dearest Chennai Makkale, those of you who purchased tickets and weren’t able to enter owing to unfortunate circumstances, please do share a copy of your ticket purchase to email@example.com along with your grievances. Our team will respond asap @BToSproductions @actcevents."
Reports also stated that there was a two-hour traffic jam due to the concert. Many complained of being unable to reach the venue due to severe jam on the East Coast Road (ECR) that even reportedly affected the movement of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin's convoy.
For those unversed, the concert was originally scheduled to take place on August 12, but due to bad weather, it was postponed. Rahman had also requested the government to help with next-level infrastructure for art, mega shows, and international experiences.
MK Stalin replied to the same and wrote on X, “Chennai will soon fulfill this long-felt aspiration! #KalaignarConventionCentre to be established on #ECR, will be a world-class facility that can host large format concerts, performances, events, exhibitions, and conventions. With iconic landscaping, hotels, food courts, parking spaces, and excellent connectivity it will be the new cultural icon of the city!”
AR Rahman is known as the ‘Mozart of Madras’, and to see him take zero accountability for an event that saw a footfall of more than 50,000 who purchased tickets that cost between 5000 to 10,000 is a pity. With a mammoth discography and a career spanning nearly three decades, Rahman’s fans are simply seeking a few words acknowledging that what happened was wrong, instead of pinning it on the organisers and turning a blind eye.