Good news for sporting buffs, costly match tickets to get cheaper

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Mar 01, 2015 22:47 IST

If you are a sports buff, the budget has good news for you. Ticket prices for all recognised sporting events including international matches, the 20-20 cricket league, Indian Hockey League and the like, are set to fall: the government has exempted these from the service tax net, for tickets that priced at over Rs 500.

This exemption also covers tickets for movies, circuses and theatrical performances including drama and ballet. Concerts of any type, pageants, award functions and any other muscial event also come under this provision.

There is a flip-side to this: performing artists in various folk or classical art forms who charge more than Rs 1,00,000 for a performance have been brought under the service tax net. This will apply to all artists performing classical or folk art forms in music, dance as well as theatre. So far, such artists have been exempted from the service tax payment.

“Exemption to services provided by a performing artist in folk or classical art form of (i) music, or (ii) dance, or (iii) theater, will be limited only to such cases where amount charged is up to Rs 1,00,000 for a performance,” the Finance Bill 2015 said.

Entry tickets to a museum, zoo, national park, wild life sanctuary or tiger reserve are also exempted from service tax.

While presenting the budget for 2015-16 on Saturday, finance minister Arun Jaitley had proposed a hike in the rate of service tax from 12.36% to 14%. A 2% cess on taxable income is also likely to be imposed at a later date, to fund the government’s flagship Swachh Bharat initiative.

Waking up to the existence of taxi companies that run on the aggregator model, which were operating in the blind spot of policymakers, the government has also brought these as well as online shopping transactions, under the service tax net. The next time you shop online, or book a cab using a mobile application, expect to pay more.

The bill also clarifies who will pay the service tax if a company is operating on the aggregator model and neither produces nor stores any of the products.

“In respect of any service provided under aggregator model, the aggregator, or any of his representative offices located in India, is ... liable to pay service tax if the service is provided using the brand name of the aggregator in any manner,” the finance bill said.

“If an aggregator does not have any presence, including that by way of a representative, in such a case any agent appointed by the aggregator shall pay the tax,” effective today.

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