Now, tiatr/drama whose turnover crosses Rs 20 lakh a year falls under the 18% tax slab; Tiatrists fear they will be forced to shut down their business
PANJIM: Goa’s popular form of Konkani theatre ‘tiatr’, which was exempted from any form of taxes by the state government on tickets, has now come under the Goods and Services Tax (GST).
Similarly, Konkani films which were tax-free now have also been included under the GST regime with the tax slabs of 18 and 28 per cent.
Earlier, as the tickets were priced below Rs 500 and if the annual income crossed Rs 20 lakh, the tiatrists were exempted from paying the entertainment tax. But now under the Central Government tax structure, drama and theatre whose turnover crosses Rs 20 lakh, now falls under the 18 per cent tax slab.
“Under the new central government tax structure, tiatr/drama whose turnover crosses Rs 20 lakh a year now falls under the 18 per cent tax slab. Earlier, as the tickets were priced under Rs 500, they were exempted from entertainment tax even if their turnover was Rs 20 lakh per year,” said an official from the Department of Commercial Taxes.
“If their turnover crosses Rs 20 lakh per year, they will have to register and GST would be levied. In case of films, if the ticket is Rs 100 and below, then 18 per cent GST will be added and if the ticket cost is above Rs 100 then GST would be 28 percent,” the official added.
Currently, the price of a Konkani movie/drama ticket is based on the entertainment tax levied by the state government but now with it falling under the GST, the tax levied comes under the central government.
Meanwhile, tiatrists fear that they will be forced to shut down their business if GST is levied as people will not be ready to pay such high price just for a tiatr ticket.
When contacted, the vice-president of Tiatr Academy of Goa (TAG), William Fernandes informed Herald that GST cannot be made applicable to tiatrs as it is basically promotion of Goan culture.
"Let GST be made applicable to business-related activities and businessmen who draw a big turnover over a period of time," he added.