Cemetery to Block 2011 Indian GP

The plans for including India in the 2011 Formula One calendar have suffered a serious blow in recent days, when it was discovered that a cemetery is likely to block the construction of India's first ever Formula One venue.

According to several media reports in the country, it seems the location for India's F1 circuit is near a cremation ground, some 40km outside the capital Delhi. When initially agreeing on the site, it seems that the company that runs the operations did not know about the vicinity of the cremations ground.

The matter could have been resolved quite easily, had the people living in the 3 villages near the site agreed to the relocation of the grand prix circuit. However, this didn't happen, despite the circuit construction company announcing that they will pay for the whole thing. According to a state government official, the relocation is impossible without the consent of the villagers.

According to rules, cremation grounds can only be removed from their position after gaining the consent of locals,” said the aforementioned official, according to The Times of India.

Under the circumstances, negotiations for the building of the circuit have now reached a dead end. Unless the villagers agree to it, India will have to find a new site to build a grand prix circuit, meaning new studies will have to be carried out, new negotiations for a construction company, and so on...

And for all of that to be complete by the 2011 launch date – as initially projected – it would take nothing short of a miracle. So we'll monitor the situation carefully – as we're more than certain Bernie Ecclestone is as well – and keep you updated on it in the months to come.
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