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Saturday, February 27, 2021

SDMC Budget drops new tax plans, to focus on collection

The SDMC, in its budget, also stated that a provision would be made to collect fines from those dumping construction waste on roads, as per directions of the NGT.

Written by Abhinav Rajput | New Delhi |
Updated: February 12, 2021 9:11:22 am
South MCD, South MCD budget, South MCD proerty tax, South MCD budget news, indian express newsBesides, the South MCD has also made a provision in its budget to provide Rs 10,000 to each councillor for Republic Day and Independence Day celebrations. (Representational)

Quashing earlier proposals to increase property tax in residential areas, hiking funds for events and festivals like Ramlila and Chhath Puja from Rs 50 lakh to Rs 1 crore, permission to keep one cattle at homes in rural and urban villages without paying animal tax — these were among the proposals passed by the South MCD in its budget finalisation meeting Thursday.

Leader of the House, South MCD, Narendra Chawla, said previous proposals to increase taxes have been revoked and the civic body would now focus on better collection. Earlier, it was proposed to create two categories of property tax, which would have meant more payment for thousands of residential neighbourhoods.

The SDMC, in its budget, also stated that a provision would be made to collect fines from those dumping construction waste on roads, as per directions of the NGT. “…steps will be taken to ensure that fines between Rs 5,000- 50,000 are collected on those dumping construction waste,” said Chawla. He added that keeping one cattle at homes in rural areas has been legalised so that ground-level inspectors do not harass people.

Besides, the South MCD has also made a provision in its budget to provide Rs 10,000 to each councillor for Republic Day and Independence Day celebrations.

A fresh push will be given to restart the Atal Aahar Yojna, launched in 2017, under which a thali (plate) will be given for Rs 15 for people. Initially, it will be started with five inbuilt kitchen mobile vans in each zone. Later, two vans will be made available in each ward, said Chawla.

Another proposal is to double councillor development fund from Rs 50 lakh to Rs 1 crore for each ward, and Rs 50 lakh for the deputy chairman of each zone. Officials, however, said this would be subject to availability of funds.

Implementing these proposals, however, will be tough as the civic body is facing a fund crisis due to Covid. Figures given by the South MCD state that as per the 5th Finance Commission recommendations, the Delhi government owes it Rs 1,901 crore between 2016 and 2021.

Leader of opposition, AAP’s Prem Chauhan, said that like previous budgets, several proposals made in this budget too have a small chance of being executed. “Several old proposals are still waiting completion,” he said.

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