Chandigarh, Punjab: The cash-strapped Punjab government has gambled on horses to bring the state’s economy back into stud form.
So what if it’s a U-turn in the “panthic’ ideology of the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) that had not allowed the erstwhile Congress regime to open casinos; on Friday, it approved the draft legislation for building racecourses and legitimizing betting on horse races for the sake of making revenue.
Approved by the state council of ministers, the Punjab Horse Race (Regulation and Management) Bill of 2013 will be tabled in the Vidhan Sabha session starting October 28. When there were only rumours of a racecourse coming up in Ludhiana, the same SAD had taken a dig at the-then chief minister, Captain Amarinder Singh, for “going against the ethos of Punjabi culture and the values of our Sikh Gurus”.
“The bill provides stipulations for maintaining and keeping of horses, betting activities, exhibition of horses and other processes of horse races and all matters connected,” a spokesman said here after the cabinet meeting where chief minister Parkash Singh Badal led the proceedings.