iconimg Tuesday, May 26, 2015

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times
Bathinda, November 10, 2012
After their requests were turned down by the state government, marriage palace owners have now decided to resort to Ghandhigiri by honouring all 117 MLAs of the state on November 19 with bouquets as a protest against the imposition heavy taxes on marriage palaces.
Members of the Punjab Marriage Palace Association (PMPA), in a meeting, have decided to not abide by the state's policy that had been recently passed by the Punjab cabinet.

Prior to this, the association had protested against the decision of the state government on a number of occasions and had also taken out state-level rallies besides deciding to move the Punjab and Haryana high court.

This time, the marriage palace owners will resort to Gandhigiri against the marriage palace policy of the state government and the terms and conditions provided in it.

The owners of marriage palaces and hotels across the state reached Bathinda on Friday and decided to move the high court and to hold protest against the government.

Bathinda Hotel, Restaurant and Resort Association president Satish Arora said, "The government had demanded from us licence fee, change of land use (CLU) certificate and external development charges (EDC), which will burden us. As part of the statewide protest, the marriage palace owners will give bouquets to MLAs of respective constituencies, including the chief minister, for government's attempt to kill the marriage palace industry."

"As per the government policy, half of the land of a palace or a restaurant should be earmarked for parking, which is not possible for us. We can agree on one-third of the land for parking, but for that too we need some time," Arora added.

He added that the state government had asked owners of marriage palaces and restaurants to pay CLU and EDC charges by December 20, but the palace owners who have set up business before 2007 have decided to not to pay these charges and move the high court. "The Marriage Palace Act was passed in 2007 so the government should not victimise those who had set up business before that," Arora said.