At least PKR 7 billion lost by wedding halls in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa during the recent lockdown, as claimed by the owners
Khalid Ayub – President, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Hotel and Wedding Hall Association (KPHWHA) – told the media that besides zero business, huge electricity and gas bills were still received and the burden to pay the rent was also huge.
Ayub said that the government promised that closed marriage halls would be given some relief in rent, electricity, and gas bills but no such promise was fulfilled.
In the recent events, the government had assured a 3-year tax break after multiple protests in the federal capital.
The government promised PKR 5 million to PKR 30 million relief in taxes in addition to interest-free loans of PKR 50,000 to PKR 500,000 for hall employees but these commitments have not yet been implemented,Khalid Ayub
Further, hall owners have complained that among the 400 marriage halls in KP, 2% of building owners paid 20% in rent while 40% of the owners got a 50% discount in rent.
We demand that the government provide immediate relief in electricity and gas bills as promised so that the employment of millions of people in the marriage halls industry can be protected,Khalid Ayub
Rahat Akbar Mughal – KPHWHA Information Secretary – informed the media that the industry provides 30,000 direct jobs and 50,000 indirect jobs to people in the province.
Mughal added that a minimum wage of PKR 2.8 billion is paid to direct employees working in marriage halls.
He further added that the affectees belong to different fields including traders dealing in meat, beef, poultry, fish, milk, cereals, vegetables and fruits, oil and ghee, tissue, cutlery, and crockery. Other affectees include flower designers, photographers and video makers, singers, DJs, and music band members.
According to the Secretary, the industry has the potential to generate up to PKR 1.04 billion per month in KP alone.
He also added, the latest SOPs for wedding halls may sound good for everyone but some halls are being sealed, causing further losses to the owners.