Bengaluru: The Good and Services Tax (GST), set to be effective from July 1, signals a bleak future for the horse-racing industry as the GST council has put betting at the race course in the 28% special business category which will badly impact the sport.
The GST is likely to sound the death knell for the equine sport all over the country, particularly at the Bangalore Turf Club (BTC) and the Mysore Race Club (MRC) which are currently paying eight per cent and four per cent respectively on their betting turnover.
“Contrary to our expectations of about 12% to 18%, the 28% GST will have a detrimental impact on turf clubs, almost a closure, particularly on BTC and MRC as the GST is on the total turnover and not on commission," said Y. Jagannath, the newly-elected chairman of BTC.
“Earlier we were paying Rs.150 crore as revenue, now we have to shed one third of the total turnover of Rs. 2000 crores, that amounts to nearly Rs. 560 crores," he said.
“And what about Mysore, their turnover is only Rs. 300 crore. We give back a major part from our turnover as stake money, trophies and cups and save some to run the club apart from paying the tax. Under these circumstances we will be forced to shut shop. We have 40 days time till the GST becomes operational and we have to rethink and work out an equation,” said the chairman, adding “There are thousands of workers in BTC, including over 500 women employees whose family is dependent on them. I don’t know how to survive for one year as we can go for an appeal only after a year."