The SPB Live in Concert organised by Raaghav Productions has had a last-minute schedule change because of a new rule introduced by PUSPAL (Central Agencies Committee for Applications for Filming and Performances by Foreign Artistes).

In Raaghav Productions' official statement released just a week before the Aug 31 concert, the organisers said they have been forced to change the concert timing from 7pm - 11pm to 3pm - 7pm because the newly-implemented rule states 'there should not be any performances after 7.30pm (sunset timing) on August 31 as it clashes with Awal Muharram celebrations'.

'Ilaya Nila' Ilayaraja SPB Live In Concert is happening at the Plenary Hall, Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre and is one of the most anticipated music events of 2019. SP Balasubrahmanyam is a legendary Indian playback singer whose songs have because of mega hits.

Advised by JAKIM (Department of Islamic Development Malaysia), PUSPAL claimed that conducting the show after 7.30pm might cause uneasiness among the Muslims and eventually lead to racial tensions.

According to PUSPAL's official guidelines, the agency 'has the right to revoke its approval should the FA performance or filming touch upon religious, racial and cultural issues of the Malaysian communities and be damaging to the country’s interest'.

When contacted, a member of the concert's organising team clarified that the rule came to their attention only on August 22 when their application was labeled "tidak disokong" by PUSPAL. However, the concert organisers, in a Facebook post, said their application had not been approved by the agency, despite the phrase "tidak disokong" only meaning it was not "supported".

"We have tried our best to explain to them that this is an indoor event and will not disrespect the Awal Muharram celebrations. But, we needed their approval. So, we had to change the timing," he explained.

However, the issue is not going to stop here. The organisers are planning a press conference today (August 26) to challenge PUSPAL and JAKIM.

"We are fine with changing the schedule of the show. As a Hindu, I respect the rule and we don't want to disrespect the Muslims. However, similar to the restrictions posed on us, all the pubs should be closed after sunset at 7.30pm. If they can't do that, it's not fair to stop this show," he added.

The concert organiser's representative also alleged that JAKIM is claiming to not told PUSPAL of the implementation of any such rules. While it's still unconfirmed, the organiser said all questions regarding this issue will be answered at the press conference.

Meanwhile, Malaysiakini reports that the concert of Taiwanese singer Bobby Chen at Stadium Melawati Shah Alam, has also been affected by a similar ruling.

The concert organiser, Soul9s Production, said the concert, originally scheduled for 7.30pm, has been brought forward to 12pm, to make way for the state government's Maal Hijrah event.

The company also apologised for the change of plans and those who wish to obtain refund, can do so before Aug 29.

Sixty-year-old Chen, who has 25 studio albums under his belt, is banned from mainland China.

Source: Raaghav Productions, Malaysiakini, PUSPAL Guidelines