KERALA

Council to seek Revenue Department help

Special Correspondent

Thiruvananthapuram: The City Corporation Council, which met here on Monday, decided to write to the State government urging the Revenue Department to supply drinking water to parched areas in water tankers during the summer.

Presiding over the meeting, Mayor C. Jayan Babu said the Corporation would play a support role in water supply. “But as a local body, we cannot foot the whole expense,” he said. Health standing committee chairman G.R. Anil said the five tanker lorries of the Corporation would continue to service the 18 locations these presently covered.

“But with more areas becoming water-stressed as the summer progresses, we will have to depend on the Revenue Department,” he said.

Opposition UDF members said the Corporation could not go back on its responsibility to supply water. They said the dispute undertaking the responsibility should not affect the supply of water. Mr. Anil said it was up to the Revenue Department to make arrangements including hiring lorries.

The Mayor told the Council that the Corporation would remove all advertisement hoardings for which tax had not been remitted.

He said an intensive drive would be launched to collect advertisement tax. “The drive will be launched despite a shortage of staff,” he said. The Corporation would realise the target by March end. UDF members said Revenue officials should be held responsible for shortfall in advertisement tax collection.

The Council approved the income-expenditure statement of the local body for the July-September 2009 period. While the income was Rs.48.71 crore, the expenditure was Rs.36.75 crore.

There was no increase in income from property tax, professional tax and licence fee, Deputy Mayor V. Jayaprakash said.