x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Indian reality show organisers apologise for chaos

The apology comes after injuries were caused when more than 15,000 people were allowed to crowd into a 7,500-person venue in Dubai.

Organisers of a live Indian reality show in Dubai apologised today for the chaos and injuries caused when more than 15,000 were allowed to crowd into a 7,500-person venue on Friday. The event was the finale of "Mammootty - The Best Actor Award 2009", held at the Dubai Airport Expo, in which the most talented actor would be selected by a panel of judges. The crowd gathered was largely fans of the Kerala superstar Mammootty, who was present at the event. Fans without tickets tried pushing their way through the security barriers, officials said, and with only 70 security guards present, the police had to be called to control the crowd. Injuries were reported, although none were serious, officials said. Officials with Asianet, the organisers of the event, said they regretted the scene but never expected the turnout. "Apart from the people who had already purchased tickets, there were thousands of others who were there to get tickets," said Bindhu Menon, the Middle East general manager for Asianet TV and Radio. The fact that Gitex was also being held at the same venue also complicated logistics. pmenon@thenational.ae