Mumbai: Maharashtra's sports ministry on Friday raised objections over Anna Hazare's hunger strike at Mumbai's Azad Maidan, saying the ground was reserved for sports and religious activities.

"The venue which they (Team Anna) want is reserved only for sports or religious activities, not for such agitations, so we have objected. They can seek any other venue than Azad Maidan," NB Mote, state deputy director (Sports), said.

Even the Bombay High Court, during a hearing here on Friday, questioned the need for Hazare's agitation "outside" Parliament.

The court has observed that if Team Anna wanted to agitate, they must pay the hire charges for the venue.

Hazare has threatened he would agitate inside jail if not given a proper venue for his hunger strike for a strong Lokpal bill in Mumbai from December 27.

For the MMRDA ground, a rent of Rs.3.5 lakh per day, plus a deposit, has been demanded.

(Agencies)