RTI reply reveals Corporation delayed collecting dues from tenants

At a time when the Coimbatore Corporation is trying to improve its financial health by cutting down expenditure and increasing revenue collection, an RTI reply has revealed that the civic body has not been keen on collecting dues.

The data showing the dues is in the Corporation’s reply to a petition from lawyer M. Loganthan, who had sought details on the shops rented out at the Gandhipuram Central Bus Stand, the monthly rent to be paid and rent due from the shopkeepers.

The 36 shops in the Central Bus Stand owed the Corporation over ₹82 lakh, as per the RTI reply.

The reply was not just about how much the shopkeepers owed the Corporation but also for how long, Mr. Loganathan said and pointed out that a shopkeeper had not paid rent for over seven years.

He owed over ₹11.62 lakh. There were others who had not paid rent for 14 months, 76 months, 12 months and two months.

It was surprising that the civic body had chosen to not to act against the defaulters because at one end it was trying to mobilise resources by cancelling tenders to save money. It was also surprising because the Corporation that went after residential property tax defaulters by placing bins in front of their houses or disconnecting water supply chose to do nothing about the defaulting shopkeepers.

This appeared to be the case with the Corporation in other prime commercial locations as well, the RTI petitioner said and added his objective was only to get the civic body to act.

Interestingly, the list of defaulters included India Post (Department of Post), which owed the Corporation ₹2.86 lakh for the first premises it had rented and ₹9.20 lakh for the second premises it had rented.

For the first premises, India Post had not paid for over eight years and for the second over 10 years. Likewise, the list also shows the Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation with dues worth ₹6.97 lakh.

At the time of filing the report, the Corporation was yet to respond to queries on the reasons for delay in collecting rent dues.

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Printable version | Sep 17, 2021 10:50:57 AM |

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