Houses up to 700 sq ft can be exempted from property tax in Mumbai, says CM Fadnavis

The exemption would apply only to flats falling within the jurisdiction of the BMC, clarified CM Fadnavis
(HT File photo)
(HT File photo)
Updated on Mar 15, 2018 08:58 AM IST
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Hindustan Times | BySurendra P Gangan, Mumbai

In a bid to score over ally Shiv Sena, which rules the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), chief minister Devendra Fadnavis on Wednesday announced that property tax for tenements measuring up to 700 sqft in the city can be waived off.

He said the government will give its nod if the BMC sends such a proposal by completing the statutory procedures.

During the civic polls early last year, the Sena had promised to waive off property tax for flats measuring less than 500 sqft. After the Sena won the polls, the civic body took the decision.

Fadnavis’ announcement came in the response to a demand raised by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA and the party’s city chief Ashish Shelar during a debate in the Assembly on housing issues in the city.

Shelar had said the BMC has already taken the decision to exempt tenements up to 500 sqft, giving relief to 17.58 lakh flat owners, but 2.97 lakh more flats will now be added to the list. He said it will lead to a burden of only Rs70 crore on the civic body in addition to the Rs350 crore because of the exemption for flats up to 500 sqft.

In his reply, Fadnavis said on Wednesday that the government felt positively about the exemption if the BMC moves such a proposal. He clarified the exemption was possible only for houses in the BMC’s jurisdiction because the civic body was in sound financial condition.

The CM also announced additional floor space Index (FSI) and transfer of development rights (TDR) for buildings that fall in the funnel area around the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Mumbai. He said the developers will be given additional TDR to ensure redevelopment of around 6,000 buildings that house more than 3.5 lakh tenants in Vile Parle, Ghatkopar and Kurla.

Advocating cluster development and incentives for the redevelopment of the old and dilapidated buildings, Fadnavis said around five lakh houses are under construction at various level in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region. He said of the total housing stock required to be constructed in the urban areas of the state, 50% was required in the MMR. “Of them, approval has been given to 1.97 lakh tenements. Two lakh are being constructed under public-private partnership and another one lakh are being developed in the next the years under the slum redevelopment scheme,” he said.

Fadnavis also said the government will tweak the DCR to bring down the provision of consent of the 70% tenants to 51% for the development of cessed and old buildings redeveloped under the cluster scheme. He said the government will also make it mandatory for the developer to make adequate provisions for the corpus funds to enable the original tenants of slum redevelopment schemes to pay overheads after the revamp. The fund is expected to be in proportion to the cost of the SRA project cost.

Fadnavis also announced in the Assembly that slums within the 20-m perimeter of Arthur Road Jail will be shifted out of to ensure the safety of the inmates. He said the decision on illegal constructions, ongoing redevelopment of the SRA and other buildings between 20 and 150 m — the earlier limit of no-construction — will be taken soon. He said without compromising on the safety of the prison, the decision about housing redevelopment will also be taken.

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