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License issue grinds operations to a halt at BTC

  April 5 , 2024

Betting activities have stopped at the Bangalore Turf Club since April 1st, as the government refuses to renew its license. While official statements remain elusive, murmurs suggest that the government is probing into allegations of illegal betting and tax evasion, among other concerns. Sources hint at government frustration with the club`s preferential treatment despite ongoing legal battles and substantial tax debts.

The Deccan Herald newspaper reports that club officials vehemently oppose illegal betting and bookmaking. They urge the government to take strict action against illicit bookmakers, offering full cooperation. However, their actions speak louder than words. How can they justify accepting sponsorships from illegal betting platforms and granting them significant advertising space?

Despite mounting pressure, the club authorities remain tight-lipped, fueling speculation. Resolving these issues will delay license renewal, as the government aims to address multiple grievances beforehand. In contrast, the Royal Western India Turf Club recently reached a mutually beneficial agreement with the Maharashtra government, extending its lease by 30 years and securing undisclosed perks. However, the BTC staunchly rejects negotiations, opting for legal battles against the government.

The BTC`s obstinance overlooks its reliance on governmental agencies for the sport`s operation. Cooperation and harmony with the government are essential for the smooth functioning of racing. Yet, attempts to educate the BTC leadership risk expulsion from the club, highlighting their entrenched resistance to change.

The Bangalore Turf Club is universally acknowledged as a cesspool of mismanagement. Its authorities are intoxicated with power, arrogantly believing they are above reproach. They dispense punishments to licensed professionals like candy, handing out ludicrous 10-year suspensions without any regard for fairness or justice. Unlike the legal system, which carefully considers the nuances of each case, the BTC acts on mere suspicion, callously ruining careers without due process. They brazenly flout the law; confident they can evade consequences.

Under the shield of a sympathetic former Principal Secretary, the club flagrantly flouted regulations without fear of reprisal. But now that protection has evaporated, exposing the club to critical probing. Despite owing the government millions in dues and engaging in questionable tax practices, the BTC remains opaque and unapologetic. They continue to exploit punters with 28 per cent GST on the bet value of the ticket while depositing with the government 28 per cent of the club commission. The club is not transparent to punters in this regard. The tote ticket does not have the break-up of actual bet, GST and Club Commission.

The Bangalore Turf Club`s decision to reject the implementation of KYC for tote betting is likely to lead to additional complications. The recent resolution by the Hyderabad Race Club to adopt KYC contrasts with BTC`s stance. According to government regulations, clubs are mandated to collect punters` KYC information. The club is mandated to deduct 30 per cent tax from every transaction in the absence of KYC.

The club`s operations are cloaked in secrecy, raising eyebrows and inviting suspicion. It`s baffling that the government has yet to take decisive action beyond occasional license delays. Off-course betting has ground to a halt due to the government`s refusal to renew licenses, citing rampant illegal activities. The government is also reported to be pressuring the club to withdraw a Supreme Court petition.

But progress is stymied by the club`s entrenched oligarchy, unwilling to relinquish their stranglehold on power. Racing, once the pride of the sport, now languishes under the tyranny of a select few families. Until these self-serving elites are dethroned and accountability is restored, the true victims remain sidelined while allegations of corruption run rampant.

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Total Comments : 1
Posted by Jagadish. B on ( April 5 , 2024 )
Excellent article. Btc not bothered about the punters not allowing them inside due to high entrance ticket prices. Btc is like a top class horse unable to run even though whipped by the government. Online betting should commence. Follow the give and take policy to benefit everyone connected to racing. Government should stop illegal betting and promote racing.

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