The question about whether or not property tax can be levied on mobile towers and equipment installed on rooftops and building terraces has come under the Bombay high court scanner.
Viom Infra Networks, a telecom tower firm, has approached the court challenging the notices sent to them by the Kalyan-Dombivli Municipal Corporation (KDMC) in May and December 2011 levying property tax on the company for four of its towers in Dombivli.
A division bench of justice VK Tahilramani and justice ML Tahaliyani has now issued notices to KDMC and the municipal commissioner asking them not to take any action till further orders.
KDMC had justified its action saying such towers and equipment on rooftops and terraces constituted a new building/structure and hence were independently subject to property tax.
The petition also alleges that KDMC officials had warned them of action if payment was not made. The court has directed the corporation and the commissioner to file its reply on January 23.
Viom said it had a leave and licence agreement with the respective building owners to install the towers and, as a precautionary measure, permission was also sought from the municipal corporation.
The petition states that the telecom towers are not permanent structures and installation of such towers are crucial to the functioning and operation of a mobile telephone system.