The tactic of playing drums at the doors of property tax defaulters and embarrassing them seems to have worked. The three corporations have amassed several crores through property tax collections this financial year with the East Delhi Municipal Corporation topping the chart.
The corporation has collected Rs. 140 crore, up from last year’s R74 crore.
The number of tax payers did not rise much though — from 2,04,117 last year, it went up to 2,10,837. A corporation official said it managed to double its collection and made defaulters pay up arrears by using unique methods such as beating drums. “Factories, godowns, many new hotels, shopping malls and schools have been added in the tax net,” he said.
According to the official, Rs. 70 lakh was collected from Mandoli Jail, Rs. 50 lakh from BSNL, Rs. 12 crore from Power Grid, R30 lakh from Rajiv Gandhi Super Specialty Hospital and Rs. 80 lakh from Maharaja Agrasen College as property tax.
The North Delhi Municipal Corporation has managed to collect Rs. 326 crore, a big leap from last year’s Rs. 182 crore. “The collection is expected to go beyond Rs. 330 crore as online payments after March 23 is yet to be added to the tally,” an official said. The civic body, however, has failed to achieve its target of Rs. 368 crore.
Their south corporation too has collected a massive Rs. 604 crore as property tax against a set target of Rs. 582 crore. Leader of House in the south corporation, Subhash Arya, said the civic body didn’t get any municipal reform fund in 2011-12 from the Delhi government.
“The government was releasing 4 per cent of the fund, instead of 5.5 per cent. The remaining had been set aside for reform. Since the SDMC has achieved its targets, senior officials held discussions with the government and managed to procure Rs. 60 crore of the set-aside amount of Rs. 135 crore,” Arya said.
The unified MCD had collected Rs. 763 crore in 2011-12.