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<nettime> Anthony d'Andrea: Goa: Drugs, Terror and Noise: The New Regime
Patrice Riemens on Sun, 1 Feb 2009 16:15:18 +0100 (CET)


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<nettime> Anthony d'Andrea: Goa: Drugs, Terror and Noise: The New Regime of Rave Surveillance


original to: http://globalraver.blogspot.com/
31 January 2009


Drugs, Terror and Noise: The New Regime of Rave Surveillance (in Goa)

Unusual things happened in the trance scene in Goa (India) this season. I
start with an apparently trivial story. The police arrested a group of
party promoters led by a German and a Russian DJ in the remote beach of
Morjim this last January 11. Nothing really different here, had they been
caught selling drugs (which was not the case). Since the early 2000s, the
government has largely eradicated the trance scene, but smaller secret
parties still take place under informal agreements among villagers, cops
and expatriates. In any case, whenever the police raid these unauthorized
events, the same outcome is expected: Western party promoters get away
with a warning, perhaps losing the sound system, if not paying baksheesh
(institutional bribe).

However, the recent January arrest was different. To the best of my
knowledge, this was the first time that Western party promoters have been
arrested on charges of public disorder, as defined in the "Noise Pollution
Rules" ? a not-so-new law (2000) that bans unauthorized audio events from
public spaces between 22:00 to 6:00. Ironical, as Goa police has only
recently opened its very first anti-narcotics division...

As an additional twist, Goa authorities have been monitoring the trance
scene within wider concerns with terrorism. Goa is a top tourist
destination, in addition to boasting a significant Christian heritage.
Considering the terrorist attacks in Bali, Egypt and Mumbai, it is somehow
surprising that Goa has not been hit. Tight community oversight of their
rural surroundings seems to be working as a strong preventive.
Nevertheless, authorities worry that free flows of party goers may serve
as target (or conduit) for terrorist plots. Otherwise, how Techno freaks
and Islamic terrorists are linked is still a matter for Bollywood
imagination...

In sum, a new regime of global rave surveillance seems to be on the rise.
>From demonizing trance parties as drug havens, the State is now employing
themes of "drugs", "terror" and "noise" within a single regime of
surveillance/environment/development for regulating the local trance scene
and tourism. This is not the result of any intentional orchestration, but
rather, the expression of the messiness of global forces acting upon rave
scenes and tourist resorts around the world.

Yet, where there is power, there is resistance?


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