The Consumer Affairs Ministry has asked the Central Board of Direct Taxes to consider service charge by hotels and restaurants as income while assessing tax returns. At present, some hotels and restaurants are levying service charge in the range of 5 to 20 per cent despite the government’s guidelines to make levy of such charge as optional.
Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan said in a tweet that renowned hotel and restaurants have complied with the guidelines, but complaints are still being received through the National Consumer Helpline about service charge. He said, hotels and restaurants have been asked either to leave the column of service charge blank or mention on the bill that it is optional. Guidelines to hotels and restaurants for not levying service charge were issued in April.