The ‘government’ run by Isak-Muivah faction of the extremist group National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN-IM) has decided to halve the annual tax they impose on Nagaland government employees.
A release issued by the information department of NSCN-IM’s Government of People’s Republic of Nagalim (GPRN) on Saturday informed that “employee tax” has been reduced from the existing 24% to 12%.
Earlier, every employee was required to pay 24% of their one month’s salary to NSCN (IM) once a year. With slashing of rates, each employee will now have to pay 1% of their month’s salary (12% in a year) to the group.
Both the Isak-Muivah faction of NSCN and the Khaplang faction run parallel ‘governments’ in areas they dominate in Nagaland, neighbouring states and Myanmar—which is collectively called Nagalim.
The release mentioned the decision was taken “in view of the plight of the common Naga people, to ease the burden of the tax payer” and “requested every responsible individual to cooperate”.
NSCN-IM, which has been in a ceasefire mode since 1997, wants creation of a greater Nagalim by carving areas in Assam, Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh and Myanmar where Nagas reside.
Last month, HT had written how recalling of high value currencies had affected revenues of rebel groups as traders and business houses affected by the move had failed to pay shop and commercial taxes.
The ‘tax’ is reportedly deducted at source by the government departments. Besides NSCN (IM) and NSCN-K, smaller outfits like NSCN (Reformation) and NSCN (KN) also impose such taxes on employees.
Resident tribes in Nagaland, who enjoy special privileges, are exempted from paying taxes to the state and central governments.
Besides taxing state government employees, rebel outfits also impose certain levies on central government employees, traders and business owners and house owners.
The outfits also hold annual budget sessions where they decide on revenue collection and other financial matters. NSCN-IM’s budget for current fiscal, reportedly close to Rs 180 crore in 2016-17, was passed last month.