The Thane Collectorate has issued notices to commercial properties in Navi Mumbai to pay Non-Agricultural (NA) tax dues of the last 17 years.
The NA tax pertains to the use of agricultural land for non-agricultural purpose.
The collectorate has clarified that residential users have not been issued notices as a court case is pending. The business community has termed the notices ‘ridiculous’ and vowed to fight it.
The collectorate began issuing notices to around 25,000 commercial establishments and would collect dues of around Rs 9 crore.
“I got a notice to pay Rs 1,122 arrears for nine years. The amount may be less but how come such a bill has been sent suddenly?” asked Amalan Sinha, who runs an IT company in Vashi. “Ninety-five per cent of the land on which Navi Mumbai was built on marshy land and not agricultural land and so the NA tax is baseless.”
Pramod Bajpai, an advocate, has to pay Rs 1,022. “We had bought fully developed plots from CIDCO. There is no clause in our lease agreement that says we have to pay NA. It is CIDCO which should have paid tax to the government.”
Navi Mumbai Action Committee (NMAC), the apex body of the Premises Cooperative Societies in Navi Mumbai, has decided to take up the matter. “The notices have given rise to several complications and substantial questions of law. We have asked the Thane collector to keep the notice in abeyance,” said A. K. Bhattacharya, president of the committee.
The Thane Collectorate said it was only following the law. “It is the duty of those issued notices to pay. People in other areas of Raigad that was taken up by CIDCO are paying. Similar notices have also been issued in Thane and Bhayander areas,” said Thane Collector A.R. Jarhad.