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NMCs property tax collection delayed third year in succession
June, 20th 2015

The Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) continues to take property tax payers for a ride. For the third consecutive year, property tax demand notes have not been distributed yet, depriving taxpayers of the chance to claim a rebate on paying tax on time. Besides, the civic body will issue two demand notes in this fiscal, causing inconvenience to taxpayers, due to the delay in implementing new tax system.

The civic body had implemented six monthly property tax system in 2012-13. So, property tax demand notes were supposed to be distributed before April 30 with taxpayers getting rebate of 4% on paying annual tax or 2% by paying half the amount on or before May 31. Also, taxpayers were charged interest of 2% per month in case of delay in paying taxes before July 1.

NMC sources say that the process to print the demand notes is underway, with distribution of demand notes expected to begin soon. So, taxpayers cannot avail rebate of 4% by paying tax immediately after receiving the demand notes. Taxpayers can avail only 2% rebate by paying tax for entire year after receiving the demand notes.

The same happened over the last two years too. NMC had then claimed that it has corrected all flaws and would issue demand notes before May 1 from 2015-16. Unfortunately, the civic body's claims proved to be hollow.

Chairman of tax consultative committee Girish Deshmukh said taxpayers who avail rebate every year do not wait for demand notes and pay the tax amount to get benefits. "Department received payments over the last two-and-a-half months. But the revenue collected is less compared to last year. We have started to distribute the demand notes and hope to complete the process by July 15," he said.

The cash-strapped NMC also incurred revenue loss due to the delay in distribution of demand notes. NMC would have received crores of revenue from April in case it had distributed demand notes in time.

NMC is also apathetic about implementing the new tax system. After a delay of two years, NMC had introduced the new tax system, where property tax doubled for residential properties and trebled for commercial properties.

NMC had claimed it would distribute demand notes as per new system from April 1. But the property tax department has started printing of demand notes as per old system.

Deshmukh said taxpayers will be given one more demand note later in the fiscal after the new tax is calculated. Everything will be streamlined from next fiscal, he said. "Revaluation of existing properties is must to issue demand notes according to new system. Revaluation process is a huge task and taking time. We will work out difference between the old and new tax and issue a demand notes to recover the difference later in the year," he said.

NMC sources told TOI taxpayers will have to pay property tax according to hiked system along with difference amount of current fiscal in case the civic body delays issuance of second demand note.

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