KOCHI: With the state government allowing local bodies to collect 10 per cent entertainment tax on cinema tickets, watching films in theatres is likely to be a costly affair. The latest decision will only benefit the local bodies, not the exhibitors.
The entertainment tax on tickets was scrapped after the implementation of GST. In the pre-GST era, local bodies used to collect the tax. But when the GST was implemented, local bodies were instructed not to collect the tax so as to avoid double taxation.
In his Budget speech on Thursday, Finance Minister Thomas Isaac said states like Tamil Nadu collect both GST and the entertainment tax.
“As per the recommendation of GST Council, the GST rate of cinema tickets was brought down from 28 per cent to 18 per cent. We have decided to allow local bodies to levy 10 per cent entertainment tax on cinema tickets,” said Isaac.
The average ticket rate in theatres in the state (other than in multiplexes) stands at Rs 110.
After imposing the 10% entertainment tax, ticket price in single screen theatres is likely to go up to Rs 125. In multiplexes, where the average rate is between Rs 150 and Rs 250, ticket prices will now be between Rs 165 and Rs 275.
The Gold Class tickets at multi-screens, sold between Rs 300 and Rs 500, will go up by Rs 30 and Rs 50 per ticket.
This means a five-member family will have to shell out a minimum of Rs 625 to watch a movie in a single screen in panchyat areas, while they will have to pay close to Rs 1,000 for tickets alone in multiplexes.
The film industry bodies are worried that the increase in ticket rates will have an adverse impact on the industry.