Srinagar: Germany’s ambassador to India Michael Steiner is likely to face some serious music from German Foreign Ministry after the Bavarian orchestra complained that Steiner had ‘misled’ them on Kashmir concert.
“We were misled by the German embassy. We will raise this issue with the German government that art can’t be exploited by anyone, be it government’s or by embassies or any political groups,” Nikolaus Bachler, the general Manager of the Bavarian orchestra said in an interview earlier this week.
The orchestra’s main complaint is against Ambassador Steiner who organised the event. Diplomatic sources that Steiner managed to hold the concert in Srinagar as wanted to show off his diplomatic skills and went out of the way to make sure that this happened.” Till the concert Steiner had a pretty mediocre diplomatic career. This was his big day”, said a source in German embassy.
The famed Bavarian orchestra who played for the elite and selected audience, wasted no time in expressing their displeasure over being ‘cheated’, much to the dismay of the German Ambassador. “The musicians, all the 80, waived the fees for Kashmiri people and not for an elite event. We didn’t waive the fees for an embassy concert. Be sure this will be an issue in Germany”, Bachler further said in the interview.
The orchestra had been under the impression they would be playing for the Kashmiri people, and not the selected audience, majority of which came from outside Jammu and Kashmir, at an “embassy concert” to which access was restricted, Bachler said.
But Steiner told a New Delhi based news channel that security considerations had been a factor in deciding how large an event to hold. “The first priority was that we had to guarantee to the orchestra, to the invitees, to Zubin Mehta, to everyone security. Kashmir is as it is. We could not at this juncture do it in a Woodstock form. The situation was not right for that,” he said.
Courtesy: Kashmir Monitor