Visits to gyms, spas, banquet halls to cost more in Delhi

New Delhi:NDTV: Visiting a spa, exercising at a gymnasium and booking a banquet hall will get costly with Delhi Assembly on Wednesday clearing a Bill levying luxury tax on them.

The Delhi Tax on Luxuries (Amendment) Bill, 2012 was passed by the Assembly amid a walk out by BJP legislators who strongly opposed levying luxury tax on banquet halls, saying it will burden the common citizens.

As per the Bill, banquet halls, gymnasiums and spas having an annual turnover of Rs. five lakh will have to pay luxury tax on their services. The luxury tax will be also levied on hotel accommodation with tariff of Rs. 750 or more per day per room.

Though the Bill did not specify the quantum of the tax, officials said up to 15 per cent tax would be levied on the services.

The BJP legislators vociferously opposed levying of taxes on gymnasium and banquet halls saying following imposition of the tax, booking a banquet hall or going to gymnasium would be difficult for the common citizens.

“We strongly oppose levying the tax on banquet halls and gymnasiums,” said leader of opposition V K Malhotra.

Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit however rejected the demands saying even BJP ruled states like Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka had imposed similar taxes on gymnasiums, spas and banquet halls.

“We want to collect revenues from these services availed by affluent section of the society and utilise the funds for welfare of the poor people,” said Ms Dikshit.

She said the tax will not be applicable for banquet halls run by DDA and MCD which are mainly used by the common citizens.

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