House tax defaulters in the city have been told to clear their dues at the earliest, with the municipal corporation (MC) on Thursday serving notices to more than 1,000 defaulters.
The notices have been issued under Section 137 of the Municipal Corporation Act, which states that "in case of non-payment of the bill within the stipulated period, action will be initiated against the defaulters."
Sources said that there are around 3,000 defaulters, including government offices, educational institutions, private business houses, residents, and small and large-scale traders across the MC jurisdiction.
The MC started serving notices after it failed to receive payments from the defaulters under the amnesty scheme, which waived off interest in case the pending amount was paid in one go. The civic body collected only Rs. 55 lakh, which was 13.5% of the Rs-4.5 crore arrears, in spite of publicising the scheme on a large scale.
MC commissioner Parminder Singh Gill said they had been left with no other option, adding, "As per the norms set by the Act, strict warnings have been issued to defaulters, directing them to pay the amounts pending at the earliest. If they fail to comply, stricter action will be initiated."
"After this, a notice would be served under Section 138 of the Act, which carries the provision of attaching defaulters' moveable and immovable property, and the same can be put to auction," he added.
He claimed that senior authorities had been served notices regarding bills pending against government offices, which remained the biggest defaulters.
"It is now the responsibility of the authorities of the departments concerned to take up the matter with the local authorities," he said.
Even as sources had said that the MC was in a hurry to get their payments because house tax will be abolished after the implementation of property tax, Gill said,
"Defaulters have the wrong perception that house tax will be waived off after implementation of property tax. They will still have to pay their house tax bill."