The staggering figure is within six months of the financial year
The Entertainment Tax Department has mopped up over Rs 3.5 crore from cable operators in the past six months after the digitalization was made mandatory by the Central Government. The recovery of the whopping amount was accounted for the set top boxes installed by the cable operators.
The above information was sought by an RTI activist. The Central Government move for compulsory installation of set top boxes under digitalization system was aimed at curbing non-payment of Entertainment Tax by cable operators in a big proportion. The mandatory installation of set top boxes has cleared the figure of cable connections to a great extent. Previously, the cable operators clandestinely suppressed the exact figure of cable connections thus robbing the Government of Entertainment Tax in a big way.
The RTI activist Abhay Kolarkar, resident of Padole Layout, sought the overall information from the Entertainment Tax Department about the current status on installation of set top boxes in the city. According to the reply, till now 4,34,980 set top boxes have been distributed or installed by the customers. Previously, the figure quoted by cable operators was much less thus clearly showing non-payment of Entertainment Tax in accordance with the number of cable connections. The RTI reply further informed that the number of cable operators in Nagpur stood at 606 who are functioning under four main cable operators.
The Entertainment Tax Department has so far recovered Rs 3.5 crore from cable operators which could climb to Rs 6-7 crore by the end of financial year. The Department has collected Rs 5.71 crore in 2012, Rs 4.09 crore in 2011 and Rs 3.90 crore as Entertainment Tax from the unorganized sector of cable operating. But after digitalization, the figure has already crossed Rs 3.5 crore within six months of the financial year.