Varanasi: Almost 12,000 movie halls across the country will remain shut on February 23 to protest against the proposed service tax.
President of Film Federation Of India (FFI) Vinod Lamba said that with the help of Minister of Information and Broadcasting Ambika Soni a meeting was arranged with Finance Minster Pranab Mukherjee on February 19. But it went futile and thus the cinema halls have decided to remain shut for a day.
Traders in the film industry have said that the government is imposing another tax in the name of `right transfer`. If the halls remain shut the government will suffer a loss of Rupees 10 crore in revenue.
Sakshi Mehra, President of the Motion Pictures Association, Delhi, said, "About 200 films are released in a year, among them only six or seven do good business. Depending on those few films the industry shows its business figures. In reality, the 99 per cent films which flop are not counted."
Posters have already been put outside the cinema halls which are participating in the strike.
Exhibitor Alok Dubey said, "A number of single screen theatres are shutting down because of these pressures, while the government is giving tax rebate to multiplexes who charge more than Rupees 150 per ticket. This is not right."