The Ministry of Sound was forced to briefly close its New Delhi club due to some "temporary licensing issues," according to executives closely involved in the start-up.

The British-based dance music powerhouse opened the doors to its new Indian venue in early February, with a considerable amount of fanfare. In the weeks to follow, however, the club is understood to have received numerous noise complaints from local residents.

Michael Wilkings, president of Ministry of Sound International, downplays the incident as a "storm in a teacup," which he says resulted in a one-night closure.

"Ministry of Sound has become the No. 1 club in India, the largest and the most conspicuously successful, so inevitably draws fire from competitors, which is what seems to have happened here," Wilkings explains to

"Licensing in India generally is complicated," he says, "and in New Delhi particularly so given the highly political nature of society there. The process is not transparent, as in the West and involves procedures know only to the licensee in each case, it's all very mysterious."

MoS launched in India through a licensee agreement with local firm Indo Renaissance, which has interests in hotels and related areas.

Wilkings is expected to meet with the New Delhi licensee tomorrow to clarify the situation.

As previously reported, MoS' Asian infrastructure extends to a club in Singapore, while an outlet in Kuala Lumpur is due to open towards the year-end. A Shanghai venue is slated for 2008.