Dharamshala,29th April- Sanjay Sharma, HPCA PRO, quoted, “The government did not give any security assurance in 2014, as a result Kings XI Punjab’s matches went to Cuttack venue. Kings XI made Cuttack as their home ground. And in 2015 they had to choose Pune as their home ground. Now when Pune has its own team, Kings XI faced problem with the ground and had opted Nagpur as their second ground. Due to water scarcity, matches were shifted outside Maharashtra and then they approached us. They wanted Dharamshala to be their venue for the next three matches. The Kings XI operational team came to the stadium recently and everything was discussed about the problems they might face for the matches.
So on the behalf of HPCA we wrote a letter to the CM of Himachal on 21st April. In the letter we showed our keen interest in hosting the three IPL matches of Kings XI Punjab and all we wanted was their written consent for the same. The letter was sent days back and no reply came from the governments end till date. On 21st March in Sujanpur, Hamirpur, CM announced publicly that “bring IPL matches to Dharamshala and we wont charge any security charges or Entertainment tax for the matches, I will provide everything free of cost.”
Sanjay Sharma also said that, “Yesterday Kings XI Punjab team owners called up Rajeev Shukla that we want our three matches to be played in Mohali and not Dharamshala now. Its again an embarrassing situation for the state of Himachal. And the government cannot be trusted, as at one point they says we wont charge anything for the matches and on the other side their own people file PIL against HPCA. As per 1967 Entertainment Act of Himachal Pradesh, there will be no tax on the entertainment which did not include sports, hence Kings XI payed the excise tax for the same in 2011. It was decided that any match that will be hosted by ICC or BCCI will not be charged with any tax as they are national games and for the matches like IPL, which are commercial in nature, will be charged with Security charges. CM did not answer on this till date. They took Rs.10 Lakh from Kings XI in 2011 at the rate of 10% as per the entertainment tax. The way the government has behaved recently, Himachal lost some good opportunities of hosting matches.