Staff Reporter

Single window system to be introduced

PALAKKAD: The Assembly Subject Committee on Finance and Excise said check-posts in the State would be modernised and a single window system on checking would be introduced to curb smuggling and tax evasion.

After its sitting here on Thursday, committee chairman and Finance Minister T.M. Thomas Isaac said interim steps would be taken to provide modern facilities at the Walayar check-post at a cost of Rs. 80 lakh. The Minister said a scanner and wage bridge and checking terminals would be set up immediately.

He said the Government proposed to upgrade the check-post at an estimated cost of Rs.30 crore. Thirty acres of land near the Sales Tax check-post will be acquired on fast track for the purpose.

Dr. Isaac said the Velanthavalam check-post would be widened after acquiring more land behind it.

Steps will also be taken to end corruption at the check-posts. Surprise checks will be conducted by special squads. Officials found involved in corruption will be suspended from service.

He said panchayats would be empowered to stop transport of goods through byroutes, bypassing the notified check-posts.

Dr. Isaac said the `Palakkad Gap Operation' of streamlining the work of Walayar check-post had yielded good result. Tax collection has increased from Rs. 25 lakh to Rs. 47 lakh a day.

He said 11 persons who were involved in the attack on the check-post last month have been arrested.

A `green channel' system would function at the Walayar check-post to ensure that there is no traffic block on the National Highway.

The committee members visited the Walayar, Velanthavalam and Naduppuni check-posts to study the problems there.