Game is for starving people too; Minister's statement resulted in low turnout: Pannyan Raveendran

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V Abdurahiman, Pannyan Raveendran

Kozhikode: CPI leader Pannyan Raveendran reacted to the low turnout for the India-Sri Lanka ODI match at Kariavattom, following sports minister V Abdurahiman’s remark. Talking to, the CPI leader said that it is better not to take an approach that could create obstacles in the path of Kerala hosting future games.

Talking about the entertainment tax on ticket rates of India-Sri Lanka ODI match, Abdurahiman had said that people who were starving need not watch the game. The CPI leader said that the game is for starving people too. People might watch a game even if they are starving, he added.

Raveendran said that the statement was one of the reasons for the low turnout at the stadium. He pointed out that as a result of this, all India tournaments might not be played in Kerala.

“The tax was increased to 12 per cent from 5 per cent. Earlier, there was a generous approach towards entertainment tax. The concession was made to bring more matches into the state. Around 40,000 people went to the stadium last time. This time around, it got reduced to 6,000 people. Did the government get a proportionate income despite the increase in tax?” he asked.

The CPI leader further said that he does not want to politicise the matter. Raveendran said that his statements were that of a sports lover. He added that sports and politics should not be mixed.

In a Facebook post made earlier on Monday, Raveendran had said that those who ought to be encouraging the sports sector were trying to curtail the rights of the fans.

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