GST on wrong note, tickets for Sawai festival to be costly

PUNE: Enthusiasts of Sawai Gandharva will have to shell out more to experience mesmerising ragas by stalwarts this year.
After the government’s decision to levy 28% GST (Goods and Services Tax) on all Indian classical music concerts, tickets above Rs250 will be taxed under this slab, making them more expensive.
Executive president of Arya Sangeet Prasarak Mandal Shrinivas Joshi said, “This is not just about Sawai Gandharva. Every classical music concert in the country will be affected by this move. If tickets get expensive, fewer people will attend. This will eventually reduce the number of concerts. The government needs to realise that our field is not luxurious and glamorous.” Arya Sangeet Prasarak Mandal is the organising body of Sawai Gandharva Bhimsen Mahotsav.
Before this, 15% service tax was levied on the tickets.”In case the government does not consider our demand to reduce GST on tickets, we will have to increase the ticket prices,” he said.
Reading out a list of names of artists who are supporting their demand, Joshi said, “Prabha Atre, Praveen Sultana, Niladri Kumar, L Subramaniam and almost all artisans from the city have supported our demand. The move will also affect the income of many artists,” Joshi added.
The mandal presented ther demand to finance minister, Arun Jaitely through Vinay Sahasrabuddhe, national vice-president of Bharatiya Janta Party. “We have also requested state finance minister Sudhir Mungantiwar. He has assured us he will look into the matter,” Joshi said.
Source- Times of India.

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