Mumbai: The Bombay High Court today directed the Maharashtra government to issue a circular asking all movie theatres and multiplexes to set up their own websites and provide online tickets booking facility without levying convenience charge.

A division bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah and Justice M S Sanklecha issued the direction while hearing a PIL by one Sunil Lalla seeking implementation of a Government Resolution (GR) restraining additional charges to be levied for online booking of movie tickets.

According to the PIL, the GR had provided for theatres and multiplexes to set up their own websites and sell tickets online without levying any additional charges.

However, all multiplexes and theatres had outsourced it to other companies like BookMyShow and others which would levy an additional ‘convenience charge’ up and above the ticket cost.

On April 16, Lalla had booked a ticket online through BookMyShow to watch a movie at Sterling theatre in South Mumbai.

He was charged Rs 193.48 and he found out that though the ticket was priced at Rs 180, he was charged Rs 13.48 as “internet handling fee”.

The high court today directed the government to issue a circular within two weeks asking all theatres and multiplexes to have their own websites to provide online tickets.

The theatres and multiplexes shall within four weeks thereafter put up their websites, the court ordered.
The petition has been kept for hearing on May 5.

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