DJ Liberate – one of the most awaited dance parties of Lahore ended up leaving Lahoris and people from all over the country disappointed. The event that was attended by a lot of high-profile people from all over Pakistan was abruptly closed down while the crowd was just starting to get their groove on.
— Dr.Shiraz Siddiq Ali (@shirazsiddiqali) May 6, 2017
After spending approximately Rs. 5,000 to Rs. 7,000 on the tickets, the party-goers were told to leave the premises after the police intervened. Reputable DJs from different parts of the world were in Lahore to entertain the music fanatics – until they were stopped.
— Khan Belal (@Belalkhann) May 6, 2017
The event started at 7 pm and was said to carry on till morning. The 2500 party-goers, while being told to leave the Sozo World Park premises, ended very disappointed and many blamed the management. Secondly, it was rumored that due to heavy traffic outside the premises, the police had to shut the event. However, the reason disclosed now is that all of this happened as religious leaders and clerics threatened the event organizers.
While talking to one of Pakistan’s reputable publication, one of the organizers Sameer stated the following:
“We were asked by police, at midnight, to shut down the event because some religious leaders had strongly reacted. They (religious activists) were ready to attack the event. So, announcements were made on the loudspeakers and the participants were asked to leave the locality.”
On the other hand, police sources stated that the President of the Sunni Tehrik (Lahore division) who introduced himself to the SHO as Mujahid Abdul Rasool stated the following:
“This illegal event, which is taking place there right now, must be stopped. Otherwise, you will be responsible and you may lose your job.”
On the account of SHO informing the cleric regarding the legality, and government’s permission for the event, the cleric, as per the police, said the following:
“No officer, not even DCO, DIG, CCPO, and IGP has the authority to grant permission for such an illegal program.”
— Razza Munir (@RazzaMunir) May 7, 2017
As the organizers took permission from the Lahore District Coordination (DCO), they were informed by the police about the situation. The DCO’s team then rushed to the venue to avoid any further trouble. Another issue that got a lot of attention, was how the youth at the party was exposed to drugs such as cocaine, weed, hash and liquor. Social worker Waqas Shahid mentioned the following in the application that he submitted to the police while requesting to shut the party:
“Without using drugs and power pills like ecstasy, heroin, morphine and GBH, they can’t dance throughout the night. This party is being arranged this year again. They are spreading vulgarity among the youth in the name of electric dance music. Our Islamic society does not allow this.”
With the organizers feeling threatened to have the party-goers attacked by the religious clerics, the party had to shut down the way it did. Conclusively, all of this was done to provide safety to the audience.