Thiruvananthapuram

Online professional tax payment to be in place

The Local Self Government Department has decided to implement an online professional tax payment system for all urban local bodies in the State.

A prototype model of the system, developed and implemented by the IIITM-K, is being run in the Municipal Corporations in the State. Based on the performance of the prototype, it has been decided to roll it out in all urban local bodies, including 87 municipalities and six corporations.

Expenditure

The expenditure for the project is expected to be met from the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) scheme’s reform incentives. The project cost is ₹15.34 crore and includes provision for technical manpower, stationery and communication, faculty supervision cost, training, maintenance cost (recurring) and security audit charges (through CERT empanelled agency).

The implementation of the new system is happening at a time when efforts are on to iron out the issues in the online system for building tax payments. The rolling out of the ‘Sanchaya’ online revenue collection system, designed by the Information Kerala Mission (IKM), began in the local bodies around 2014.

By 2018 or so, many local bodies had implemented the system, with the Thiruvananthapuram Corporation being one of the earliest ones to implement it.

However, right from the initial days, there have been issues with the database in many local bodies, with hardly any effort being taken up for data cleaning, to remove the ambiguous or duplicate entries.

Though much of the recent instances of fund misappropriation has happened due to offline payments, which gives a leeway for corrupt officials, some payments made in the the online system itself are hard to be tracked.

In some cases, bills for the payments made through the online system are visible to the tax payer, but are not traceable at the website interface in the local body office.

This had led to some people getting inflated bills, as the earlier payments were not registered in the system. Such systemic issues are currently being traced and all the tax payments made in recent years are also being scrutinised.


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Printable version | Dec 2, 2021 4:42:06 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Thiruvananthapuram/online-professional-tax-payment-to-be-in-place/article37155281.ece

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