Madhuri performs in Saifai today, UP to waive tax on film starring her

In a move that may spell trouble for the ruling Samajwadi Party in Uttar Pradesh, already facing flak over the "extravagant" Saifai Mahotsav in Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav's native village in Etawah, the state government has initiated the process to exempt Bollywood actress Madhuri Dixit's upcoming movie Dedh Ishqiya from entertainment tax.

Madhuri, along with other Bollywood stars, including Salman Khan, Ranveer Singh and Soha Ali Khan, will be performing during the concluding ceremony of the 15-day long mahotsav in Saifai on Wednesday, Etawah Additional District Magistrate Gyanendra Singh said.

A senior official confirmed Tuesday that Department of Entertainment Tax has received government's directive to prepare a proposal to waive off the entertainment tax on the movie scheduled to be released this Friday.

"The proposal to exempt Dedh Ishqiya from entertainment tax is being prepared and a decision in this regard may be taken soon. The proposal will be sent for approval of the cabinet later," said a senior official in the entertainment tax department.

A meeting of a screening committee, comprising officials from departments of information, entertainment tax and culture was held Monday to discuss the proposal. According to sources, the screening committee has cleared the proposal.

As per the officials the entertainment tax is calculated as 25 per cent of the ticket price, which may vary depending on the cinema halls and multiplexes.

A senior official said since various scenes of the movie had been shot in Lucknow, it may a be ground for exempting it from the tax.

In the movie, produced by Vishal Bhardwaj and directed by Abhishek Chaubey, Madhuri reportedly plays a grey character.

The Akhilesh Yadav government had, in August last year, approved a proposal to exempt Bhaag Milkha Bhaag from entertainment tax in two installments for two months. The government also had waived off the tax on another movie —-Two Little Indians — for three months.

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