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Artists vow legal action against ‘fraudulent’ music festival

Singers Asim Azhar and Hasan Raheem have announced they plan on taking legal action against the Summer Jam Colour Festival, which, according to them, used their names to con people into purchasing tickets and getting sponsors. Festival organisers, however, have refuted their claims.

On Sunday, Azhar took to his Instagram Stories to pen a detailed note against the “fraudulent” music festival. “Fraud Alert” he titled his note. “Summer Jam Colour Fest is a scam and the organisers are frauds. Please get your refunds on all tickets and sponsorships. And please beware of future events by them.”

The Habibi singer went on to announce, “Due to non-payment, fraud and [lack of commitment] from the organisers, we won’t be performing tonight in Islamabad.” Azhar assured that he and his management will also be will be taking legal action against the organisers, since they “fooled fans into buying tickets and got sponsors by using our names” only to refuse compensation, preventing them from performing.

Encouraging everyone to demand refunds, Azhar added, “The people responsible for this fraud must face consequences.” And irrespective of whose fault it may be, the singer concluded, “Me and my team are sorry to all the fans who were looking forward to see us perform. Hope we make it up to you next time.”

Raheem also shared an Instagram Story accusing the festival of being a sham. “Really sad about the whole situation,” he wrote, briefly. “I apologise to all [the] people who came out to have a good time tonight. We weren’t paid by the organisers on time,” he explained. “Kindly get refunds from Sumer Jam Colour Fest. We’ll be taking legal action against them for wasting everyone’s time and money. And love all of you who came out tonight.”

Summer Jam Colour Fest rejects claims

In an official statement shared on their Facebook page, festival organisers have refuted the “false allegations” levelled against them. “We would like to refute the false allegations levelled against Summer Jam Color Fest. We have been in this industry for the past five years and have organized the biggest shows in Islamabad and Lahore with the same artists and others” their statement began.

“This was our fifth event with the artist and we have consistently fulfilled with him in every event,” they said, without naming the said artist. “The disregard of past work and relation with the organisers expressed by the artist [or] artist’s manager, is particularly disappointing.”

The statement added, “As part of the creative industry we have put in a lot of our effort and energy into fostering an environment for public events, and have always delivered as per the commitment to both public and artists.”

Organisers further alleged that “majority of artist payments were made to the third parties dealing with them,” in light of which, they termed allegations of non-payment “absolutely false.” They went on to question, “Should the organisers also demand refunds for the amount already paid to the artists?” adding, “Also, there were no sponsors on board in this event.”

They asserted that the “little amount” that was left, the artists “agreed on being paid in cheque backstage, despite which, when the senior management left the backstage to get the cheque, the artist managers got onto the stage and made an announcement of not performing, which they had no authority to do so!”

Event managers also deemed use of the term “fraud” as “defamatory and unfounded.” They assured, “We had every intent to pay the artist and that was communicated to the managers as well. All other artists that performed are a proof that we stand by our commitment.”

The statement also informed that when Summer Jam Color Fest was postponed in July due to weather conditions, “every single person was refunded.” It pledged that the organizer community has only begun recovering from the gap in public events due to Covid. “And we hope that the artist community comes forward to work together instead of dragging each other down,” it urged.

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