The breather that urban development department has given to tax payers to pay their property tax in May while allowing them to avail the 5% rebate, normally given for tax payments done in April, too is expected to give MCC time to push this project to its logical end.
Admitting that lockdown has given the revenue department to focus on this project even with limited staff at his disposal, Santosh Kumar, deputy commissioner (administration), MCC, also holding charge as DC (revenue) told TOI that the civic body is gearing up for both manual and online modes of tax collection. “The focus with pandemic going on is to go digital with our tax collection and MCC is striving to get the same completed at the earliest,” he said.
Data entry work on past property tax paid is presently on. “We are using tax receipts to compile the same,” Santosh said. “We have already pitched the digital payment idea with taxation, finance and appeals standing committee and the Mayor,” he said, adding the move will require post-facto approval of the council in its maiden meeting. The proposed digital move will also come with an online tax calculator that will help in ease of payments, he said.
At the same time, the civic body has also drawn up plans to conduct a property tax returns mela at the Town Hall by following social distancing norms where people may pay their taxes either manually or online, as per their preference. In one such similar drive conducted at the venue, MCC collected Rs 10 lakh by way of trade license, Santosh said, adding the idea for a similar approach to mopping up revenue by way of property tax is in the works.
Asserting that a final picture will emerge once the lockdown ends on May 3, Santosh said MCC collected 40% of its property tax during 2019-20. Incidentally, MCC has been toying with idea of introducing online payment of taxes from time that Sameer Shukla became the first IAS officer to take charge as MCC commissioner. The civic body has made computerisation of its office operations a flagship programme under different mayors since then.
April 16, 2020