Saturday 24 Feb 2024

An EDM fest with a twist in the name?

Compiled by Ashley do Rosario | FEBRUARY 02, 2024, 01:53 AM IST

An EDM fest with a twist in the name?

Electronic Dance Music (EDM) festivals in Goa have gained a reputation of notoriety attracting widespread criticism here, there and everywhere from all and sundry. But not this one, slated to begin today up North.

‘Echoes of Earth’ is being pitched as festival which ostensibly seeks to “celebrate” Goa’s and the Western Ghats’ rich biodiversity through art, culture and music. The three-day is being held from February 2 to 4 at Agarwado-Chopdem and is being advertised massively in the digital media as well as on radio.

The organisers have claimed that there will be four stages nestled in hundred acres of green landscapes of Brahm Farms in Chopdem. The patch of land where this festival will be held however, had made headlines some 7-8 years ago for indiscriminate tree felling there with local activists accusing the Forest Department officials of turning a Nelson’s eye towards the destruction..

The line-up of DJs and artistes, as many as 50 from India and abroad, meanwhile spill the beans giving enough indicators that the three day event will hardly echo the earth, as the festival’s nomenclature seeks to portray -- Echoes of Earth. Even the State’s Tourism department is partnering with the organisers for the event, taken in by the festival’s name perhaps, at a time when loud music violating sound restriction laws and court rulings, has been in the news .

The organisers meanwhile, assure that it will not be a ‘rave party’ and sound norms set by the Supreme Court of India will be followed to the tee. With tickets priced at Rs 2,499 for a single day and Rs 5,900 for all three days -- not wide off the mark of some well known EDM brands -- it’s anybody’s guess whether the organisers will be good on their promise to be sound laws compliant. But a brilliant idea, we must admit, to tame Goa’s vociferous greens: twist the nomenclature -- Echos of the Earth.   

What a show of strength!

The extravaganza organised last weekend to mark the 85th birthday of Goa’s longest serving chief minister and legislator, Pratapsing Rane, in Sattari turned out to be quite a show of strength with almost every current and past politician marking their presence as did a massive home crowd.

There were the industrialists and there were the stars from tinsel town led by Hema Malini, now a BJP MP. And then there was Suresh Prabhu, the former union minister, who has a Goa connection, being a son-in-law from here.

But what caught the attention of many, was the organisational prowess of the Rane patriarch son and current TCP and Health Minister Vishwajit Rane. The public felicitation was impeccably choreographed and no stone was left unturned to ensure every invitee was made to feel comfortable.

Interestingly, Chief Minister Pramod Sawant, who hails from Sanquelim where the Rane’s ancestral home is located was publicly acknowledged as ‘our own’ by none other than the Rane Matriarch, Vijayadevi Rane. More than what Sawant had bargained for from the event perhaps?

Rane Jr on his part stole the show briefly when he went down memory lane to articulate the father-son relationship and hail the senior Rane for his political leadership and guidance in the welcome speech during which emotions got the better of him and he broke down. What however had him worried was the birthday boy’s acceptance speech in which he wished the present CM well, and also all the CMs in the future. 

The statement was fodder for the media, which dissected it multiple ways and worrying Rane jr enough to prompt him to issue a clarification that the media had “misquoted” his father. Seemingly there’s still a lot left to thaw in the political relationship between him and the Chief Minister, or may be not.

Hobson’s choice for Vijai?

It was a week in which Goa Forward Party (GFP) chief Vijai Sardesai was left fretting and fuming about the reports circulating of his change of heart towards the current dispensation led by Chief Minister Pramod Sawant. 

Not only was the Fatorda MLA visibly upset about the reports, which he sought to scotch with repeated statements denying the same, he was fuming over the apparent role played by some of his allies in the Opposition especially the Congress, to add fuel to the raging rumours.

Unhappy with the situation, Vijai had to address a press conference where he shot down the claims that he would soon be joining the NDA camp. The wily politician however claimed that if such a decision has to be taken he will do it openly with public consultations and not in this ‘under-cover’ sort of a fashion and thundered: “I know the paths leading to the BJP.”  

Don’t they say, there can be no smoke if there’s no fire?


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