Property owners in Mumbai and the rest of the state can breathe in peace because the state has stayed the unwarranted assessment and forcible recovery of non-agricultural (NA) tax.
Revenue Minister, Narayan Rane, announced this in the Assembly on Wednesday night when Congressman and Bandra legislator, Baba Siddique, brought the matter to the notice of the House.
Siddique said he would move court if the unwarranted hike continued. Rane, in reply, announced a status quo and assured to the review tax assessment.
At least 175 housing societies in Bandra and Khar received inflated tax bills two years ago had because the revenue department had linked the NA tax to the current stamp duty on properties. “Nearly 300 plot owners from Bandra’s Salsette Society, who paid Rs 200 each, were charged Rs 22,000 each,” Siddique said. “With stamp duty rates going up every year, people will have put their homes up on sale to pay NA tax.”
Property owners had unsuccessfully petitioned the government after the administration tried to recover the tax from them under police protection.
NA tax is recovered from developers and property owners [including flat owners] for using agriculture land for housing. Any developer has to apply to the revenue department [respective district collectors] after buying farmland where he or she proposes to build houses. Such land has boosted rapid urbanisation, which is close to 50 per cent in the state. Until recently, the state charged only Rs 200 or Rs 300 for every flat because the developer had already paid a one-time NA tax before construction.
The hike in NA tax was to impact the entire state where similar assessment was to begin soon, he said.