Friday, October 21, 2011

Formula 1 : Sports or entertainment

Formula 1 has not been recognised as a sport in India by the Ministry of Sports. The Jaypee group which has built the racing circuit had secured an exemption from paying entertainment tax from the Governmet of UP.

In a twist to the tale, a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) has been filed in the Supreme Court of India against granting of exemption from paying entertainment tax. The Hon'ble Supreme Court has now directed the respondent Jaypee Group to deposit 25% of the ticket sales in a special bank account till the court decides on the matter.

Earlier, BJP Youth leader and Member of Parliament Varun Gandhi too had raised his voice against the exemption granted by the UP Government. He had said that Formula 1 is like wrestling in WWF, which is stage manged and is not a sport in the true sense.

Though comparison with WWF may be a bit of hyperbole, there is a large majority who agree that with team orders being legal in Formula 1, one doesn't see true racing and hence may not be classified as a true sport like athletics. 

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