Panaji: Deputy Chief Minister Manohar ‘Babu’ Azgaonkar on Sunday said that the ‘Sunburn 2020’ EDM festival will be held from December 27 to December 29 at Vagator in strict adherence of the guidelines issued by the Centre in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
Azgaonkar, who holds the tourism portfolio, told ‘The Navhind Times’ that two sectors of the Goan economy have been ‘dysfunctional’ – mining operations have been out of action for the last two years and COVID has severely affected the tourism industry.
“Hence revenue generation has been at the slowest pace in the state. Small as well as big businesses along the coastal belts and in interior areas are almost dead. If these big events (EDM festivals) are held then we can expect restart of business activities, which will help generate revenue for the government,’’ he explained.
When Sunburn representatives approached the tourism department, they were told that the company would have to clear all the pending dues before the festival starts.
“The Sunburn officials have agreed on the condition,’’ he said, adding that there will be a limit on the number of attendees for the EDM festival.
Tickets for the event will be sold online from November 4 onwards. Over and above, the social distancing norm and the installation of Arogya Setu app in mobile phones will be mandatory for the festival attendees.
“There used to be huge crowds for the event. But this year participants’ number has been restricted to 12,000 to 18,000. The government has given in-principle approval for the event,’’ he added.
When questioned on the allegations of easy availability of drugs at the festival venue, he remarked, “It is the job of police and the excise department, and not mine.”