Cable operators and cable TV service providers will now have to shell out entertainment and amusement tax on each cable TV connection. Local cable operators said the amount would be passed on to the consumer. For, the Chandigarh civic body has been mulling the imposition of entertainment and amusement tax on the local cable operators in the city. According to the draft the civic body is formulating, the cable operators will have to shell out up to Rs 20 per connection.
Commissioner of Chandigarh Municipal Corporation, K K Yadav, told Chandigarh Newsline that they were mulling the imposition of this charge as the local bodies were empowered to collect this tax now. The civic body aims to earn over Rs 3.5 crore every year.
“We are drafting the policy. The Punjab Cabinet had passed this last year. A committee has been formed to look into the entire policy of entertainment and amusement tax. As per the draft, every cable operator will have to pay this tax ranging from Rs 10 to Rs 20 on every single connection,” Yadav told Newsline, adding, “For example, if there are around 3 lakh connections in Chandigarh, then the MC can make around Rs 3.5 crore or more per year. The proposal is underway.”
In 2017, the Punjab government had passed the levying of this tax on cable TV connections in the Cabinet. It awaits the final nod, though. Cable operators, on the other hand, said the charges would be passed on to people.
Sandeep Chhabra, who runs NXT Digital Cable TV in Chandigarh, said, “Ultimately the burden will be passed on to the consumers. This cannot be justified at all. Rs 20 per connection is really high because there are thousands of connections and over and above, the cost will be charged from the consumer only.”
Facing financial crisis, the Chandigarh MC has been exploring different aspects to increase revenue. At the last House meeting, it had approved the imposition of cow cess and officials were asked to deliberate on the imposition of entertainment tax.