After the High Court of Bombay at Goa declared on Friday afternoon that last year’s Sunburn was illegal, news in the evening was that the organisers had already started work for this year’s festival without procuring the necessary NOC for use of the land.
Gauncars of Anjuna, in a letter submitted to the Administrator of North Goa Comunidades on Friday evening, protested that the organisers of Sunburn have “commenced work illegally on Survey No 206/1 without NOC,” from them.
“It was unanimously decided that the NOC for organising the event will be given only after the payment of fees. It has come to my knowledge that the Comunidade of Anjuna has not issued a NOC till date, whereas work for the event has already started,” read the letter to the Administrator of North Goa Comunidades.
“It is sad that after being reprimanded by the High Court of Bombay at Goa, the orgainsers still think that they are above the law or that the law does not apply to them. Will they still think of approaching the Supreme Court?” asked a gauncar wryly.
In the afternoon, the High Court of Bombay at Goa had in its order on the Writ Petition of Rajesh Sinary stated: “It is declared that the permission dated 28.12.2022 issued to R (Respondent) 10 for holding the Sunburn music festival from 28th to 30th December 2022 was illegally issued and consequently, the said permission was illegal and liable to be quashed and set aside.”
As news of the judgment reached Vagator and Anjuna, parents of the differently-abled, senior citizens and women in particular heaved a sigh of relief hoping that the organisers will not be allowed to get away this time.
“We knew that only the High Court would be able to save us and I thank and ask God to bless the judges, their families and all working in the High Court. This torture had to stop before we started dying,” stated the mother of a differently-abled child.
“If the authorities find noise pollution levels are being exceeded or breached, they should immediately halt the event and seize the sound generating equipment. In addition, the authorities must take all measures to ensure that noise pollution levels are not breached at any such events,” read the High Court Order.
“They (organisers of Sunburn) most probably thought that by buying the government they could care a hoot for the law of the land. I hope this High Court judgment will bring them back on track,” said Rajesh Sinary who filed the Writ Petition No 15 of 2023.
“From all this, we gather an impression that this hurry and grant of last-moment permission is designed to deny public-spirited citizens access to justice or to seek review of the permission granted, even though permission granted may be in complete breach of the government’s own Action Plan or in breach of the Noise Pollution Rules,” read the order thus bringing the government in the loop.
The High Court of Bombay at Goa had in another judgment directed the organisers of Sunburn to toe the line set by the General Body of the Comunidade of Anjuna on whose land the event is being held for the last ten years.
“This judgment is not just for us in Goa but all over the country because it reasserts our faith in the judiciary and that money is not everything in life. Parties become bad when they are infested with money,” summed up Sinary.