Thiruvananthapuram: Local self-government bodies in Kerala have been allowed to impose an entertainment tax on movie tickets from September 1. A state government order to this effect will lead to a 5 per cent rise in the prices of tickets below Rs 100 and an 8.5 per cent rise for costlier tickets.
The state government decided to reintroduce the entertainment tax on movie tickets after the Goods and Service Tax was reduced from 28 percent to 18 percent with effect from January 1, 2019. The local tax was earlier scrapped due to the imposition of the high rate of the Goods and Services Tax.
Though the initial plan was to impose local taxes up to 10 per cent of the ticket, various trade groups objected to it and the matter reached the Kerala High Court. The latest order said that new taxes have been introduced without putting an extra burden on movie-goers.
The exhibitors, however, are spared the trouble of getting the tickets stamped with the local body’s seal before selling. They are required to pay local taxes on the tickets sold in a particular month within the third of the next month. All tickets that bear the Goods and Services Tax will be counted for local taxes as well. This procedure will be in place until an e-ticketing system is introduced.
The local-self government department amended its earlier order to abide by a Kerala High Court order and to honour an agreement it made with various trade associations.