Thiruvananthapuram: The theatres under the Kerala State Film Development Corporation (KSFDC) have landed in deep crisis with the film distributors boycotting its theatres in the state for hiking movie ticket rates. Recently, the state government has imposed entertainment tax on movie tickets which has irked the film industry. On November 14, the theatres in the state were kept shut to protest the government's decision to impose entertainment tax on movie tickets.
There are around 17 movie theatres under the KSFDC. President of the Kerala Film Producers Association said that imposing a double tax on movie tickets is totally unacceptable.
"This is apart from the Goods and Service Tax (GST). The film industry is in huge financial crisis and this has added to the woes. KSFDC immediately revised the ticket rates while the entire industry is in protest. Also, the distributors are not very keen on releasing movies at KSFDC theatres because they are not very prompt in clearing dues," said Mr Renjith.
Earlier there was only entertainment tax and since the introduction of GST, the entertainment tax was lifted.
Now the government had decided to impose entertainment tax to boost the revenue of local bodies. In addition to GST, now the government has imposed a 5 % entertainment tax for tickets below Rs 100 and 8.5% entertainment tax for tickets above Rs 100. "There are other industries and the government is not levying an additional tax on them. Why KSFDC is not into production despite having all infrastructure facilities. It's because the industry is facing a slowdown. Imposing a double tax on this is totally unfair," said Mr Renjith.
An official of KSFDC said that none of the theatres under the KSFDC had a new Malayalam movie release last Friday. "We are trying to hold a discussion with the various association of the film industry. We are exploring ways to make the theatres run. We are trying to bring movies directly from the corporate houses in Mumbai," said an official....