After announcing tax exemption for the Madhuri Dixit starrer Dedh Ishqiya — a week after her performance at the Saifai Mahotsav — the Akhilesh Yadav government has revised the state’s entertainment tax policy. The revised policy has extended the levy relaxation to 200 prints of the movie.
The government declared that the policy would be amended on January 17 and issued an order on the same day giving relaxation to 200 prints of the movie under the new policy. As per the earlier policy, the tax exemption could be availed on 12 prints within three months on the condition that only one print in a district could benefit from the relaxation.
The government had first issued an order on January 9 granting exemption to 12 prints of Dedh Ishqiya for three months, a day after Madhuri performed in Saifai. The movie was released on January 10.
Principal Secretary (entertainment tax) Biresh Kumar, however, denied any connection between the change of policy and Madhuri Dixit’s performance at the Mahotsav.
As per the new policy, a producer does not have to pay entertainment tax either on all 200 prints at a time in a week, or on 100 prints in two weeks. The entertainment tax is calculated as 40 per cent of the ticket price. Officials in Department of Entertainment Tax said that the amendment has been made to benefit film producers who want to realise their production cost as soon as possible.
With the state having revised its policy, 149 screens showing Dedh Ishqiya have availed tax exemption across the state so far. There are 170 screens in different multiplexes and 400 single screen cinema halls in UP. As per sources, the government earns at least Rs 40 crore as entertainment tax every month.
JAI HO IN QUEUE FOR BENEFIT
As per Entertainment Tax Department sources, the department has received a proposal from film producer Sohail Khan seeking tax exemption for the movie Jai Ho released on January 24. Sohail’s brother, Salman Khan, plays the lead role in the movie and he too had performed at the Saifai Mahotsav. Salman had personally met Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav after the event “The proposal of Jai Ho is under consideration,” the principal secretary confirmed.