Thiruvananthapuram

Audit report flags revenue loss

Several multistoreyed buildings, telecommunication towers not regularised

The audit report of the city Corporation for the financial year 2017-18 has flagged revenue loss to the civic body owing to not following the norms in regularisation of unauthorised constructions as well as in wrongly classifying commercial buildings as residential.

The auditing team found that several multistoreyed buildings and telecommunication towers in the city have not been regularised, and are still having the UA (Unauthorised) numbers, with taxes remaining unpaid. One such telecommunication company’s tower located at Rishimangalam has outstanding tax dues of ₹1.69 lakh while another one at Poojappura owes the Corporation ₹1.65 lakh.

The report says that a seven-storied commercial complex at Chenthitta ward owes the Corporation ₹3.81 crore in tax dues, since 2006-07. In reply to the audit query, the Corporation officials had informed that this building had now been provided a TC number, but the tax was paid under the old rates under Section 380 of the Municipality Act, causing the remaining amount to be reflected as outstanding dues.

Wrong permit

In Vattiyoorkavu ward, permit was provided for a residential building spread over 286 sq m in 17 cents of land. The owner later re-submitted the application for a residential-cum-commercial building in 996.36 sq m. However, the permit was approved as residential, at a reduced rate of ₹10 per sq m. In some cases under the Fort and Kudappanakkunnu zonal offices, permit fee was not collected in accordance with the floor area. In such cases, the audit proposes that the remaining amount be collected from the official responsible for it.

Incomplete building

In another serious lapse, an incomplete three-storied building at Sreevaraham ward was given an occupancy certificate from the engineering section of the Corporation. The audit team conducted a site inspection in the presence of the revenue inspector, in which it was found that the building did not have doors or windows, while the plumbing, wiring and flooring work was incomplete. The audit report says that the administration should take serious note of such instances of providing occupancy certificates to a building having only a mere structure.

The report also finds that lesser amounts than stipulated in the norms were charged as compounding fee in regularisation of unauthorised constructions in some cases. The unauthorised constructions below areas of 300 sq m are regularised by the assistant engineers, whom the report holds responsible for the lapses. In some zonal offices, the records of regularisation were found to be not properly maintained.

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Printable version | Jul 7, 2020 7:12:11 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Thiruvananthapuram/audit-report-flags-revenue-loss/article30506225.ece

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