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Buddh International Circuit sealed due to non-payment of fees

Buddh International Circuit sealed due to non-payment of fees

Sarah Waris

Published: 16 Feb 2020 10:25 AM GMT

The Buddh International Circuit (BIC) in Greater Noida that had hosted the Formula 1 races from 2011 to 2013 has been sealed by the authorities after the non-payment of taxes and fees. The 5.1 km track has been sealed by the Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Authority (YEIDA) and has started preparing a global tender to host an auction to recover the dues that are owed by the developers Jaypee Infratech Limited.

Way back in 2014, the Indian Grand Prix was set to have a one-year hiatus, but the event was canceled for the second successive time in 2015 after it was involved in tax disputes with the Uttar Pradesh government. The government of UP had stated that Formula 1 is not a sport but an entertainment event and wanted to levy taxes as a result.

The YEIDA had scrapped the lease agreement that allowed Jaypee access to 1000 hectares of land, according to Hindustan Times. The track was built for the Grand Prix specifically, but has since then been hosting local championships after the venue was lifted off Formula One's calendar. It has been used by motorcycle and auto manufacturers to display their products and shoot advertisements for promotional videos.

The circuit has been designed by the German architect Hermann Tilke, who moved four million cubic tons of earth to achieve the rise and fall through the circuit. Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull-Renault won all three seasons of the Indian Grand Prix.

Despite being locked down, all events that have been scheduled at the venue will go ahead as per plan, with Hindustan Times stating that only the VIP gate has been sealed. A Jaypee spokesperson further added that they would move to court against YEIDA's action as they had already met 90 per cent of its dues.

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