Film lovers in Madhya Pradesh have been deprived of watching new releases since October 5 as over 400 theatres have downed shutters in protest against entertainment tax levied by some local bodies in the state.
A theatre owner said that entertainment tax, which had been levied over and above GST was defeating the "one nation, one tax" that it has promised.
The GST-slogan of 'one nation, one tax' proved wrong: Jain
"Goods and Services Tax of 28% is levied on film tickets. Now urban local bodies have imposed additional entertainment-tax ranging from 5-15%. Screening of new movies have stopped since October 5 as theatres are shut," said Jitendra Jain, ex-President of Film Federation of India.
"The GST slogan of 'one nation, one tax' has been proved wrong due to this double taxation," said Jain.
Workers at theaters in danger of losing livelihood
Jain said that workers employed at these theatres are in danger of losing their livelihood due to the strike, and demanded that the Union government intervene immediately. MP will go to polls on November 28 and counting of votes will take place on December 11.
Polls stopping MP government to take decision on this issue
Cinema industry sources said that big players in the sector are unwilling to pay this additional entertainment tax as it would encourage other states to impose such taxes on film tickets.
Meanwhile, sources said that the Model Code of Conduct in place in poll-bound Madhya Pradesh was stopping the state government from taking a decision on the issue.