Global Citizen founder Hugh Evans says they would apply for tax exemption for their upcoming cultural event in Mumbai, and then it would Maharashtra government’s call to consider the same or not. The inaugural Global Citizen India (GCI) Festival to be held on Saturday will have international as well as Indian celebrities, including British band ‘Coldplay’ making their debut performance in the country.
The other celebrities expected to lend star power to event are Jay Z, Aamir Khan, Shah Rukh Khan, Ranveer Singh, Katrina Kaif, A R Rahman, Farhan Akhtar, Shraddha Kapoor, Arjun Kapoor, Arijit Singh, Dia Mirza, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, Monali Thakur and cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar.
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The NCP had earlier alleged that the BJP-led government was providing concessions for the festival. “We are charity and we will apply for exemption. We would apply for exemptions, it is up to the government to determine. I think it is played out in local politics. There is vibrant democracy as people can challenge it and it is the decision of state government. As we are charity, we will try to make the event as cheap as we can,” Evans told PTI.
There has been considerable heartburn over the pricing of tickets, reportedly starting from Rs 25,000 and going upto Rs five lakh, but the organisers cleared the air saying 80 per cent of the tickets are free.
The free tickets are for those involved in social tasks like supporting education, gender equality and sanitation and the work would have to be validated by an NGO. “We want to make the event equitable as most rock concerts charge for everything. We decided to make 80 per cent tickets free but we had to cover the cost of stage etc, so we charge for the remaining 20 per cent,” Evans said.
“We are charity, we don’t make money, no artistes have taken money as they believe in the cause. Among the 20 per cent some tickets are given to sponsors, corporate and general public,” he said.