HYDERABAD: It was a ‘game’ among three IAS officers and finally the winner is the organiser of IPL, which got Rs 30-crore entertainment tax exemption on around 11,000 tickets.
The game is that the organisers wanted the state government to give entertainment tax exemption for about 60 per cent seats. Hyderabad Cricket Association, the host, wanted tax exemption on 11,000 tickets, with an assurance that the tickets would be distributed as complimentary tickets. However, sports secretary B Venkatesham was bypassed in the process.
The reason is that last time, when the Indian Premier League organisers had wanted tax exemption on tickets, Venkatesham held a detailed review and rejected the proposal.
So, this time, the organisers bypassed the sports department and approached another senior IAS officer who is not connected with the sports department. Later, a file was sent to the commercial taxes department without the notice of the sports department.
The commercial taxes department issued a GO RT 239 on April 1 granting Rs 30-crore exemption to the IPL organisers, sources said. However, like other important GOs, GO RT 239 too has not been uploaded on the state government’s website till date.
“I know that most of the 11,000 tickets were sold in the open market at higher rates. They hardly distributed any ticket as a complimentary to any VIP,” an IAS officer told Express.
So far, seven matches have been conducted at the Uppal stadium. The final match, the eighth, is scheduled on May 21. Interestingly, after getting tax exemption, the IPL organisers wrote personal letters to all the ministers stating that they would not give complimentary tickets to ministers.
If any minister was willing to watch IPL match on any day, the organisers would make seating arrangements for him but complimentary passes would not be issued to the ministers was the communication from the organisers to the ministers.