AAP affect – Shimla MC to hold public meet over levying property tax

Shimla: Unable to administer or decide about taxation, Shimla Municipal Corporation (SMC) has taken a leaf out of AAP strategy in fixing the property tax slabs in the city by inviting public reactions to a proposed new tax evaluating system.

At a recent special session of the SMC  Mayor Sanjay Chauhan proposed a mix of unit area method (UAM) and the old system of annual ratable value (ARV) to collect the tax in the city.

Shimla MC

As the house stands divided over the proposed system the corporation decided to hold a public hearing on January 16 and 17 in Bachat Bhawan.

Before the hearing city people can register their suggestions and objections regarding suggested zones and factors in written in the office of Mayor, Dy.Mayor, Deputy Commissioner and ADC.

Counsellors expressed their distress saying that if the proposal of tax was introduced as such, it would shift the burden from rich tax-payers on to the poor ones. The corporation will lose a substantial amount of tax collected from the rich tax-payers in prime locations in the city.

Assistant Municipal Commissioner, SMC, Naresh Thakur stated that, “As the House stands divided over the proposed system, it has called a public hearing on January 16-17, seeking objections on the UAM and the House will suggest bylaws and factors on the proposed system on January 22.”

According to Ajay Aggarwal, representative of PRUDA (the company hired to survey the city for implementation of proposed tax system), the city has to be divided into five different zones for tax evaluation, considering factors like location, usage, type, rent value and structure and each zone has been assigned a numerical value to it ranging from 1 to10.

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