RWITC notifies emergency measures

After the Government notification of demonetising Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes, the horse racing industry has been impacted too. The Madras and Bangalore Turf Clubs cancelled their races last week as there was no availability of cash for punters and bookmakers. In view of this current cash crunch, the RWITC’s licensed Bookmakers have stopped operations for a week.

As the Mumbai racing season is scheduled to commence on Sunday (Nov. 20), the Chairman of RWITC, Mr. Vivek Jain issued the following statement:

“The Government of India directive, issued by the Prime Minister, which has made high value currency notes illegal for use, with effect from Nov. 8, has had a crippling effect on the racing industry. With racing being a cash transaction business, the negative impact on betting and related activities can be well understood.

“There will be a sharp reduction in totalisator and fixed odds betting, stall fees from bookmakers (who are not operating as of now), mobile and gate receipts revenue.

“The Committee of the Club, at its meeting held on Nov. 10, debated the option of either cancelling race days till further notice, or to run the races by taking steps to reduce the daily direct loss.

“It was decided, unanimously, to pay 50 per cent of the advertised stakes for the first four race days of the season as an interim measure. There will be no reduction in advertised prize money of sweepstake and graded races. The continuation of this cut (or further steps to be taken) will be reviewed after four race days.

“The Committee noted that it would have been inappropriate to altogether cut the race days, especially as the preparatory races for the Classics are run in the early part of the season. The cut of 50 per cent on the stakes will just help to minimise the direct daily loss, which the Club can ill afford, in its present financial condition.

“We hope the owners, professionals and racing fraternity in general appreciate the magnitude of the crisis, and the compelling reasons which necessitated this financial force majeure emergency action.

“We are simultaneously taking all steps to ensure racing is not hampered and that near normalcy returns as soon as possible.”

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Printable version | Jan 17, 2021 3:25:34 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/races/RWITC-notifies-emergency-measures/article16644574.ece

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