The state government has the authority to exempt tax on movies. A movie is generally made tax-free when it deals with a socially-relevant and inspiring subject. The aim is to make the movie easily accessible to a wider audience. Today, we look at some of the famous movies that were declared tax-free.
1. The Kashmir Files (2022)
The Kashmir Files was released on 11 March 2022 and has made ₹190 crores in 12 days. The movie is about the exodus of Kashmiri Pandits from the Valley. It was made tax-free in Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Bihar, Karnataka, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Tripura, Goa and Haryana.
2. Tanhaji (2020)
Tanhaji, released in 2020, is a story about Tanaji Malusare, the 17th-century Maratha warrior and general of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. The movie generated a deep sense of nationalism, especially in Maharashtra. It was made tax-free by Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana governments.
3. Uri: The Surgical Strike (2019)
Uri: The Surgical Strike was a fictionally dramatized account of of the retaliation to the 2016 Uri attack. It was made with a budget of ₹25 crore grossed ₹342.06 crore worldwide. It was made tax free by the Uttar Pradesh government.
4. Chhapaak (2020)
The Deepika Padukone starrer Chhapaak was released in 2019. It is a biographical drama based on the life of the acid attack survivor, Laxmi Agarwal. It was declared tax-free in Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan.
5. Pad Man (2018)
Inspired by the life of social activist Arunachalam Muruganantham, Pad Man was released in 2018. Made on a budget of ₹76 crores, it made around ₹207 crores at the box office. Pad Man was made tax-free in Rajasthan.
6. Toilet: Ek Prem Katha (2017)
Toilet: Ek Prem Katha was released in 2017 and became the first movie in the post-GST era to become tax-free. Since the movie was in the interest of the general public, it was made tax-free by the Uttar Pradesh government.
7. Hindi Medium (2017)
Hindi Medium was released in 2017. It was made on a production budget of ₹14 crores and grossed ₹3.22 billion at the worldwide box office. Hindi Medium was declared tax-free for states like Delhi, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat.
8. Sachin: A Billion Dreams (2017)
A documentary sports film, Sachin: A Billion Dreams, was released in 2017. Based on the life od legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, the movie was declared tax-free in Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Kerala, and Odisha.
9. Dangal (2016)
The sports drama, Dangal, was released in 2016. The movie promoted women empowerment and was declared tax-free in Delhi, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.
10. Neerja (2016)
Released in the same year as Dangal, Neerja also received the status of tax-free. It was based on the real-life event of the hijacking of Pan Am Flight 73 in Karachi, Pakistan. It was made tax-free in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra.
11. Sarbjit (2016)
Sarbjit was based on the life of Sarabjit Singh, an Indian man who was sentenced to death by the Supreme Court of Pakistan in 1991 and subsequently spent 22 years in prison for alleged terrorism and spying. The movie was made tax-free in Uttar Pradesh.
12. Nil Battey Sannata (2016)
Nil Battey Sannata featured Swara Bhaskar in the lead role. It highlighted social issues and the struggle of a mother in making her kid succeed. Nil Battey Sannata was declared tax-free in Delhi and Uttar Pradesh.
13. Airlift (2016)
Airlift is another Akshay Kumar starrer movie that was made tax-free. Released in 2016, Airlift showed the evacuation of Indians based in Kuwait during the invasion by Iraq. It was made tax-free in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.
14. Bajirao Mastani (2015)
Bajirao Mastani portrayed the story of the Maratha Peshwa Bajirao and his second wife, Mastani. It was released in 2015 and was made tax-free in Uttar Pradesh.
15. Manjhi: The Mountain Man (2015)
Manjhi is a biographical film based on the life of Dashrath Manjhi, famously known as the “Mountain Man”. Dashrath Manjhi carved a path 9.1 metres (30 ft) wide and 110 metres (360 ft) long through a hill 7.6 metres (25 ft) high, using only a hammer and chisel. It was released in 2015 and was made tax free in Bihar and Uttarakhand.
16. Mary Kom (2012)
Mary Kom, released in 2012, was a biographical sports film based on the life of boxer Mary Kom. Made with a budget of ₹180 million and earned around ₹1.04 billion. It was declared tax-free in states like Uttar Pradesh, Assam and Maharashtra.