In a move that is likely to fetch the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) an additional Rs 700 crore, the civic body has started the process of mapping and measuring 1.2 lakh properties for which it had no records.
Of these properties, 70,000 are slums.
The mapping will be done manually by civic officials and not with the digital Geographical Information systems (GIS).
The process has been delayed for the past four years. In 2007, the civic body had decided to conduct GIS mapping of these properties, which would digitise these records. However, after senior civic officials objected to sending private contractors into homes of citizens, the plan was shelved.
According to civic records, the city has 3.5 lakh properties, but the BMC possesses detailed records and measurements of 2.3 lakh.
Since the details of the remaining weren't available, the BMC was unable to send them property tax bills.
A civic official from the assessment and collection department of the BMC said, "We have already mapped about 45,000 properties. We will now be able to send out provisional property tax bills, which will in turn add to our revenue."
However, the civic body is yet to take a call on whether it wants to conduct the mapping exercise in slums.
Currently, the BMC calculates property tax based on the rental values of flats by taking into account the standard rent that a flat would get.
Under the proposed capital value-based property tax system, the tax would depend on the area and type of residence among other things.
SS Shinde, joint municipal commissioner, said, "We have initiated the process of mapping manually. We are halfway through and will start work on entering the data into our systems to bring out their property tax bills."