Chennai (PTI): Nearly 1,000 cinema halls across Tamil Nadu remained shut today after theatre owners decided to go ahead with the strike against imposition of 30 per cent local body tax apart from additional tariffs under the new (Goods and Services Tax) GST regime.
“We are against the Corporation Tax (local body tax) which is 30 per cent. This is in addition to the GST rates. We are not against the GST. We welcome it,” Tamil Nadu Theatre Owners and Distributors Association, President, Abhirami Ramanathan said.
He had sought the withdrawal of 30 per cent local body tax while pointing out that the Kerala government has withdrawn it.
“The tax of 30 per cent is in addition to the GST Tax rates, theatres are shut due to our inability to pay taxes,” he told PTI.
Besides the GST, which came into effect from last Saturday, 18 per cent has been fixed for tickets below Rs 100 and 28 per cent for tickets above Rs 100.
The Association had also called on Chief Minister K Palaniswami on July 1 seeking his intervention on the issue.
Meanwhile, the Tamil Nadu Film Producers’ Council has requested the theatre owners to reconsider their decision considering the film producers.
The Council President and actor Vishal Krishna in a statement had expressed inability to support the decision taken by the theatre owners, saying a suitable time be given to the state government to look into the demand raised by the members of film fraternity.
“It is due to this reason, the Producers’ council cannot extend its support to the strike call given by the theatre owners. We also request the theatre owners to reconsider their decision,” he had said.
As the theatres are shut from today, film producers took to social networking sites to ask the government to sort out the issue.
“We expect Govt of TN to remove the local tax and address the concerns of the theatre owners so that the film continues,” two time National award-winning writer and film producer, Dhananjayan Govind, said.
“Ivan Thanthiran– we can only give a good film. Beyond that what can be done when the whole system is collapsing.
Deeply disturbed,” Govind who is the producer of the film “Ivan Thanthiran” which hit the screens last Friday, tweeted.