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Govt. agencies owe crores to MCD in property tax

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Staff Reporter

DMRC, Jal Board, DDA, Transco among the top defaulters

NEW DELHI: Well over a year after implementing its ambitious Unit Area Method for property tax collection, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi is again struggling to meet its collection target, and its task has been made all the more difficult by various government agencies that owe crores of rupees to the civic body.

Top government departments and undertakings that have to pay crores of rupees as property tax include Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (Rs.400 crores), Delhi Jal Board (Rs.312 crores), Delhi Development Authority (Rs.203 crores), Delhi Transco (Rs.22 crores), colleges and universities (Rs.15 crores), Central Public Works Department (Rs. 4 crores), Public Works Department (Rs.3 crores), Delhi Police (Rs.2.5 crores), Delhi Transport Corporation (Rs.1.68 crores) and new Delhi Secretariat (Rs.65 lakhs).

Similarly, Indian Oil Corporation and Bharat Petroleum have to pay property tax totalling Rs.17 crores and Rs.7.63 crores respectively, while the power distribution companies BSES and NDPL owe Rs.6.25 crores and Rs.2.65 crores. Delhi Golf Club has dues of Rs.31 crores, while India Habitat Centre has to pay up Rs.50 lakhs.

Speaking at MCD Standing Committee meeting, Municipal Commissioner A.K. Nigam expressed concern over the decline in property tax collection and said the Assessment and Collection Department officials had been asked to step up its collection exercise and send notices to defaulters. In the last financial year the target for property tax collection was Rs.1,200 crores but only around Rs.850 crores could be collected.

This year the target was Rs.1,370 crores and by September 2005 only Rs.375.29 crores was collected, he added.

Significantly, property tax is a major source of revenue for the civic body as around 80 per cent of the revenue comes from taxes. Prior to introduction of the new method, MCD collected a record Rs.920 crores in 2002-03 and over Rs.1,200 crores in 2003-04. However, in its first year of implementation of the Unit Area Method last year, the civic body managed to collect just Rs.850 crores -- a deficit of almost Rs.400 crores.

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