Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) is going to pay back property tax defaulters in the same coin — by auctioning their properties, both residential and commercial.
The civic body has decided to up the 'public humiliation' on property defaulters in the Capital.
Unable to get property tax from 4,882 property owners even after publishing their names in national dailies, the MCD has now decided to auction these properties.
All these property owners owe tax worth Rs 5 lakh and above to the civic agency and collectively the amount touches Rs 1,201 crore.
The civic body held a meeting on Thursday to decide the course of action.
This is the first time that the MCD would be auctioning properties in such a way. Present market value of the said properties will be ascertained before the auction.
To begin with, a total of 173 properties will be auctioned. MCD officials said bank accounts of these property
owners have already been attached.
"We have already attached a number of properties and some new ones have also been attached after publishing the list in newspapers. We've contacted Delhi Development Authority (DDA) so that we know the reserve price for these properties," said ASA Khan, assessor and collector, MCD.
The civic agency will come up with a public notice in the next 15 days with the auction date and venue. A team of MCD officials also visited the DDA office to find out about guidelines for auctioning properties in the city.
The civic agency has already written to the sub-registrar informing them about these properties so that their sale and purchase could be restricted.
"There are a number of agencies that specialise in auctioning properties and we will be consulting them to chalk out a plan of action. We will be engaging one of these companies to carry out the auction process," said a senior MCD official.
Officials said there are a number of properties whose owners are yet to be identified while some properties are lying vacant for quite some time, officials added.
There are more than 30 lakh properties in the city but the civic agency is able to collect tax from only nine lakh.
While the honest taxpayers bear the brunt of increase in property tax rates, the civic agency has not taken any strict action against tax defaulters so far.