Tamil actors and directors have started their protests with the slogan #SaveTamilCinema against the 28% GST tax on regional movies. On the top of this GST, Tamilnadu government is also collecting 30% entertainment tax, which amounts to total of 58% taxes on the Movies.
Chennai Theatre owners have already called for strike and closed all their movie theatres. Nearly 1100 theaters were shut down protesting against this new tax reforms. In support to theatre owners, Kamal Hassan, along with other members of south Indian film chamber conducted a press conference and opposed a Goods and Service Tax (GST) of 28%.
He said, “I was promised an easy life when the Republic (of India) was formed. Why should I work for the Government? I work for my own sustainability and it is not getting easier. I will have to quit the industry if I am on the highest tax slab. When it comes to the pride of India, it was always regional cinema that stood up for awards in international arenas. Regional cinema contributes to the might of the country. You can’t reduce that through taxation.”
Even the Tamil Director Shankar had tweeted saying, "48-58%.. too much tax.. save Tamil cinema''. Soon A.R.Murugadoss, Harris Jayaraj and others supported this cause by saying, “Never thought the GST will crush the 10 Lakhs family of Tamil Cinema along with others. Time to speak or never” and “#SaveTamilCinema”
While everyone in neighboring state are fighting against the bad effects of GST on regional cinema, our Tollywood actors and directors choose to stay silent on this burning issue. It had become a habit of our Tollywood biggies to open their mouth only if they are personally affected. But since producer is the one who gets to face all these soul crushing hurdles along with Piracy, Low ticket rates and now Double Taxation, most of them are already packing their bags.