Instances of incorrect declaration of properties and their usage pattern led to short payment of property tax of Rs 207.35 crore during 2008-10 in Bangalore, said a Comptroller and Auditor General of India report tabled in the Karnataka Legislative Assembly on Wednesday.
The implementation mechanism in property tax management by the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (city corporation) suffered from several deficiencies, said the CAG report on Panchayat Raj institutions for the year ended March 31, 2011.
“Among others, the abnormal delay in conducting the physical survey of properties by BBMP based on the digital mappings of the area geographical information system resulted in absence of a comprehensive database of properties,” it said.
The CAG report said control mechanism as regards revenue collection was ineffective as evidenced from non-maintenance of database, non-verification of returns filed and un-encashed cheques, among others.
BBMP is statutorily empowered to levy and collect tax and non-tax revenues. The property tax has traditionally been and continues to be the principal source of revenue to upkeep the basic services in the city. BBMP collects property tax by way of unit area value based self assessment scheme.
According to the report, cash management of BBMP revealed that huge funds were retained in several bank accounts without transferring to nodal bank accounts and the balances were not reconciled.
“Bank accounts were operated in the name of individuals which is fraught with the risk of misappropriation of funds,” it said. “Cash books in respect of bank accounts were either not maintained or were incomplete.”
The CAG report also said the annual accounts prepared by urban local bodies in Karnataka were not certified by Chartered Accountants for the years 2008-10.