'Shift racecourse to outskirts of city'

BANGALORE, MARCH 17. The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of the legislature has recommended the immediate shifting of the racecourse (Turf Club) from the heart of the city to the outskirts, keeping public interest in view.

In its interim report, tabled in the Legislative Assembly today (it was also tabled in the Legislative Council), the PAC, headed by K.S. Eswarappa (Bharatiya Janata Party), took exception to the failure of the club to pay the annual lease amount to the Government and renew the lease agreement.

The Government had fixed the annual rent at Rs. 10 lakhs between 1989 and 1999. On September 5, 2000, it hiked the annual rent by 10 per cent from 2000 to 2009.

The committee wanted the Government to recover the rent with interest. Till November 2004, the Bangalore Turf Club (BTC) owed Rs. 97.16 lakhs to the Government.

In 1905, the Government gave 68 acres of land on lease basis to BTC to organise horse races. Successive governments since 1968 were in favour of shifting the BTC to outskirts of the city.

`Plan to shift'

In the Legislative Council, the Deputy Chief Minister, Siddaramaiah, said the Government planned to shift the Race Course to Yelahanka on the outskirts of the city.

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