Akshay: Service tax has forced independent producers to lock doors

Mumbai, Jan 16 (IANS) The government's decision to levy 12.36 percent service tax on film and television actors is taking a toll on the industry, says Bollywood star Akshay Kumar, adding it has forced independent producers to stop making movies.

"A lot of films are closing because of this (service tax)... and due to this many (independent) producers have locked their door from making films. Now there are only big producers and corporate producers who are making films," he said in a group interview.

The actor feels that the industry already pays a lot of tax.

Most likely, the filmmakers will go on a strike to protest against the service tax.

Akshay, the man behind two production houses - Hari Om Productions and Grazing Goat Pictures - feels "our industry pays a lot of tax...this should not happen."

"I am sure the government knows the best. But this (strike) will tell the government that whatever is happening is not right. We should try and remove this, this will help to make more movies," added the 45-year-old.

He urges media to take up the issue, saying: "Media should talk and write about the service tax as it is not right, especially for the producers."

After giving mega hits like "Housefull2", "Rowdy Rathore" and "Oh My God!" last year, he is gearing up for the release of "Special Chabbis", his first outing of 2013. Coming out in February, Neeraj Pandey directed heist drama also stars Anupam Kher and Manoj Bajpayee.