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Government Bans Movement of Horses Till Mid-Feb

By North-End | 23 Dec 2008 | MUMBAI


That the Mumbai Racing Season 2008-09 has been jinxed from the outset, is a well known fact! The fire in the Members' Stand set the ball rolling as to the speculation of a timely start to the season. Another fire that soon followed hardly helped matters. Next, it was the Equine Influenza epidemic that slowly but steadily hit the race horses and spread across to almost the entire race horse populace. Late last month when horses actually began to come out of the stables there seemed a ray of hope that racing may finally see the light of day latest by early February. However, the RWITC's newly elected committee had barely sat for their first meet when they were struck with a Government notice banning movement of all horses until at least the 15th of February 2009. The latest development must have come as a rude shock to the RWITC and race goers alike and this ban must further dampen the moods of all those connected with the races. Mr. Vivek Jain, Chairman, Marketing, said "The ban notice is unfortunate and unfounded. We are fast returning to normalcy. We will represent to have the notice diluted or withdrawn on grounds of merit". It is hoped that the Club's representation would be addressed in the right perspective by the Government since the race horses are evidently well on road to recovery. A substantial number of horses are already on the trial track. Most horses are certainly gaining in fitness as well. In fact, the Pune Race course is buzzing with activity with nearly a thousand horses coming out to work in the mornings. Many have already been seen going on a canter which is surely a welcome sight. Before long they will go on their majestic gallop and will soon regain racing fitness. While all efforts would be made to resume the racing action, it is felt that the Government too, should look at the Club's representation and take a fair stand and rule as it deems fit. It is in the interest of the sport after all, that racing should start but not a day later than necessary.