Explain why bus operators evading tax still on road: HC to Punjab,Haryana

Taking into account the whopping amount of tax allegedly evaded by sleeper coach bus operators,the Punjab and Haryana High Court on Wednesday asked Punjab and Haryana governments to explain under which provisions such buses have been allowed to ply.

Written by Express News Service | Chandigarh | Published:February 16, 2012 3:58 am

Taking into account the whopping amount of tax allegedly evaded by sleeper coach bus operators,the Punjab and Haryana High Court on Wednesday asked Punjab and Haryana governments to explain under which provisions such buses have been allowed to ply.

The two states were asked to clarify their stand during the resumed hearing of a PIL filed by Ramesh Sharma — a resident of Jalandhar. The petitioner has alleged that sleeper coach buses cannot be allowed to ply,as there is no provision for them under the Motor Vehicles Act.

Appearing on behalf of the petitioner,Advocate Mohinder,contended that the Himachal Pradesh government has recently issued a notification imposing a ban on plying of sleeper coach buses. Alleging that sleeper coach and tourist buses have caused a tax evasion of Rs 87 crore to the Punjab government,the petitioner contended that the as per the government’s own statement,that if a proper check was kept on the entry of such buses,Punjab will benefit by over Rs 500 crore.

Elaborating,the petitioner stated that a tourist bus has to pay only Rs 40 per day to ferry tourists. However,these buses evade tax by not ferrying tourists but passengers. The petitioner also submitted that charges for an ordinary bus ferrying passengers is more than 10 times of what a sleeper coach and tourist bus charges.

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