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BMC plan to give rebate to hoarding owners on annual ad fee hike gets nod, Oppn stages walkout

"The pandemic has affected other license holders and residents equally. They should be offered rebates and waivers,” Samajwadi Party MLA Rais Shaikh said.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai | December 5, 2020 9:36:25 am
bmc, bmc covid expenditure, bmc covid expenditure corruption, BMC standing committee bmc news, mumbai news, indian express newsThe BMC is incurring cost to create quarantines, isolation wards, purchasing equipment and medicine. (File)

The BMC‘s move to give rebate in the hike on annual advertising fees to hoarding owners who display messages related to Covid-19 pandemic drew criticism from Opposition parties on Friday. Calling it “injustice”, corporators demanded that similar rebates be given to other license holders as well.

A proposal of waiver on advertisement fees and delay charges as well as rebate in the hike on annual advertising fees for hoarding owners in lieu of advertisements displayed related to Covid-19, was tabled before the Standing Committee for its approval on Friday.

Taking up the cause of other license holders, Samajwadi Party MLA Rais Shaikh said: “I am not against this proposal but the benefits should be extended to civic body’s other license holders as well. The pandemic has affected other license holders and residents equally. They should be offered rebates and waivers.”

Shaikh’s demand received support from Opposition leader and Congress corporator Ravi Raja as well NCP’s Rakhi Jadhav.

However, Shiv Sena leader and Standing Committee Chairman Yashwant Jadhav refused to accept the demand and cleared the proposal. Following this, Congress, NCP and Samajwadi Party staged a walk out from the meeting.

According to the proposal, following the demand from Mumbai Hoardings Owners Association, the BMC has proposed complete waiver of advertisement fee from April to July and waiver on late fee from August while providing 5 per cent rebate on annual 10 per cent license fee increase for next year. Those who had already paid the fees from April to July, will get relief in bills generated since August.

In all, around 1,250 hoardings can be found in the city. Since March 16, all hoardings have been asked to display messages related to Covid-19.

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