CHIEF MINISTER’S OFFICE, PUNJAB

CABINET APPROVES ENTERTAINMENT TAX ON DTH, LOCAL CABLE CONNECTIONS

GOVT LIKELY TO EARN RS 45-47 CRORE ADDITIONAL REVENUE FROM IT

Chandigarh, October 16: The Punjab Cabinet, led by Captain Amarinder Singh, has approved levy of an entertainment tax by urban and rural local bodies on DTH and local cable connections.

These local bodies will be eligible to impose and collect a nominal entertainment tax of Rs.5 per DTH connection and Rs.2 per local cable connection per month with the enactment of ‘The Punjab Entertainments & Amusements Taxes (Levy & Collection by Local Bodies) Act 2017’, which will replace the earlier entertainment tax system under the new GST regime. The government proposes to bring the new legislation in the next session of the Vidhan Sabha.

Local Bodies Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu told the cabinet that the nominal tax would ensure accountability on the part of cable operators. With the new tax structure in place, the government would be able to ask them to disclose details of their connections, which they have so far been prone to hiding in order to evade tax.

The move follows a proposal mooted by the Local Government department, allowing all the Urban Local Bodies and Gram Panchayats to levy such tax. However, no entertainment tax has been proposed for Cinemas, Multiplexes, Amusement Parks and similar other places providing facilities for entertainment and amusements.

With nearly 16 lakh DTH and 44 lakh cable connections in the state, the local bodies are expected to earn annual income of Rs.45-47 crore following the imposition of the tax, which is
likely to mop up Rs.9.60 crore and 36.96 crore respectively from the two segments.

It may be recalled that after introduction of GST by the Government of India with effect from July 1, 2017, entertainment tax being levied and collected by the state government through the Department of Excise & Taxations stood withdrawn. The power of levying entertainment tax has now been conferred on the Panchayats and Municipalities through amendment in entry 62 of the State list to the 7th schedule of the Constitution of India.