The city-based NGO Mysore Grahakara Parishat (MGP), which spearheaded the Self Assessment Scheme (SAS) for property tax payment, has flayed the authorities for its inability to digitise property tax records.
Bhamy V. Shenoy, founder of the MGP, and R. Chandra Prakash, president, wondered if the MCC was serious about collecting property tax. The tax forms did not reflect the 15 per cent increase in tax component last year, though the 15 per cent hike comes into effect once in 3 years.
“As on May 1, 2015, there is no new tax form and the rates do not reflect the 15 per cent increase nor the 2 per cent transportation cess being collected by the authorities,” said the MGP.
Many citizens may have paid tax as per the old rates, adding to the net loss in property tax collection.
Besides, the MCC seldom conducts random checks on tax forms submitted by tax payers under the SAS to ascertain the veracity of the details furnished, the parishat claimed.
Hence there was no clear picture whether or not citizens were computing tax properly under the SAS.
The authorities were flayed for not introducing IT solutions and computerising the property tax collection system. “Had they digitised the tax preparation, they could have avoided many of the present problems faced by honest tax payers. The MCC could have collected property tax more efficiently,” said the MGP.
Based on national and international benchmarks for property tax, MCC should be able to collect anywhere between Rs. 120 crore to Rs. 300 crores as property tax, it added.