KOCHI: The state government is likely to reconsider the Budget proposal for allowing local bodies to collect 10 per cent entertainment tax on cinema tickets. It was Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan who gave a hint in this regard following a meeting with the representatives of various film bodies at Ernakulam Guest House on Sunday. The Chief Minister said the topic will be discussed in the next Cabinet meeting.
“The office-bearers of various film bodies met me on Sunday. These members include actors Mammootty and Mohanlal.“Their main request was the Chief Minister’s intervention in the provision made in the budget to increase the entertainment tax, which according to them will adversely affect the Malayalam film industry. I gave assurance to them that the government will give due consideration to their request. The government will always be there with those who work in films and also is committed to extending support for the growth of cinema,” said Pinarayi Vijayan in his Facebook post.
Finance Minister Thomas Isaac included the proposal for allowing local bodies to collect 10 per cent entertainment tax in the 2019-20 budget. The entertainment tax on tickets was scrapped after the implementation of GST and local bodies were instructed not to collect the tax so as to avoid double taxation. Now, a person is paying 18 per cent and GST on a ticket and adding 10 per cent entertainment tax will result in a further hike in ticket price.
Along with Mammootty and Mohanlal, FEFKA general secretary Unnikrishnan B, FEFKA directors union joint secretary Sohan Seenulal, representatives of Producers Association including Renjith, Appachan, Anto Joseph, Evershine Mani, Exhibitors Association’s Antony Perumbavoor, M C Bobby and Film Chamber office-bearer Anil Mathew also met Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.The office bearers of film bodies also expressed their hopes the government would give relaxation on the proposed tax hike.