BENGALURU:If everything goes well, Bangalore Turf Club (BTC), will expand its betting centres to three other cities in the state. The move is with the intention of augmenting the resources of BTC.
Currently, BTC has betting centres in Mangaluru, Mysuru and Tumakuru and there has been a proposal to set up such centres in Ballari, Davangere and Belagavi.
Chairman of BTC Harimohan Naidu told Express that the move was imperative as it is not possible for many to visit these cities to bet on races as often as they wish. “Hence, we decided to set up additional betting centres in tier two cities like Ballari, Davanagere and . We have sent a proposal to the government in this regard about six months ago and are waiting for the response. We also need to augment our resources and set up a corpus,” he said.
Naidu said it is too early to project a fixed revenue which will come from these proposed centres. “We believe that these new centres will generate revenue like the centres in Mangaluru and Tumakuru which are are quite successful. As of now, we can only hope that the government approves the proposal,” he added.
When contacted, commissioner of the Department of Commercial Taxes Ritwik Pandey said it is upto the government to issue licenses to the centres. “The role of the Department of Commercial Taxes will be prominent only after the approvals are given and the centres are set up. Once these procedures are completed, the department will conduct an assessment survey which will determine the amount of revenue that will flow from these centres to the government coffers,” he claimed.
Nonetheless, not everyone seems to be keen on having betting centres in these cities.
Speaking to Express, Dr Pradeep, a private practitioner in Davanagere, said: “Though betting centres are a revenue generator for the government, there are chances that people will get addicted to betting gradually, leading to troubles in the society.”
An advocate and professor with a law college in Belagavi, on condition of anonymity, said: “We will stage protest against this move and urge the government not to allow a betting centre in the city. As the city has a large number of engineering students, it is not a good idea to encourage betting centres here.”