Mithun Chakraborty one of the highest tax payers in the country

MUMBAI: With 31 July looming ahead, most are running helter skelter to file their income tax returns. So as people hurry to file their income tax returns, Mithun Chakraborty sits proudly in his little haven way outside the hustle bustle of Mumbai, yet within the city limits in his Madh Island home. The actor for the last many years has been one of the highest tax paying individuals in the country.

With a smile on his lips, the actor said, "It is a matter of great pride to pay my taxes and pay it on time. To pay the highest tax is also an achievement because it reflects all the fruits of my labour. Things have not been so easy for me as I come from humble origins, but I am proud of all that I have achieved."

The actor slipped into memory lane as he spoke of times that were not easy for him. He said, "When I left Mumbai for Ooty, I had taken a loan of several crores from the government to start my business. The hotel industry was yet to boom, and the interests on my loans kept increasing. In desperation, I began to act in several films that people began to term as B grade films. I would give bulk dates to producers so that they could complete their film and at the same time it would help me pay my loans. Within a short period of five years, I repaid all my loans and today, when I am told that I am one of the highest paid tax payers, it suddenly makes me stand tall."

Chakraborty has the dubious record of giving 27 flops for 27 weeks in a row. But for the actor, it was a matter of survival. He confessed, "I had moved my entire family to Ooty and my family is really big. I was the sole earner. There was no one I could turn to. I did what I had to do and I am not apologetic."

Today Chakraborty still commands the same respect from the box office as he did when he left Mumbai several years ago. His performances in multistarrers stand out and are spoken in high esteem not just amongst his fans but also amongst critics.