Gurugram civic body misses Rs 1,100 crore property tax collection target

GURUGRAM: The Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon (MCG) has barely collected 15% of the projected property tax collection of Rs 1,100 crore this year. The civic body has been struggling to recover taxes and other dues, which add up to more than Rs 570 crore, for many years now.

According to a state report, MCG tops the list of municipal corporations with the highest dues. It is followed by the municipal corporations of Panipat (Rs 259 crore) and Karnal (Rs 168 crore).

MCG has managed to collect only Rs 157 crore in form of property tax till the month of October. Last year, the civic body mopped up around Rs 165 crore.

Chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar and urban local bodies (ULB) minister Anil Vij recently issued directions to the 10 municipal corporations in Haryana to gear up revenue generation. In a meeting earlier this week, Vij recommended that the commissioner of the municipal corporation of Panipat be suspended for a “lethargic attitude” towards revenue generation and recovery of dues. The ULB minister made the recommendation after reviewing the revenue collection and financial status reports of the corporations.

Sources said while MCG has already collected Rs 157 crore as property tax, it won’t be able to collect more than Rs 50 crore from the remaining property owners who haven’t paid tax yet. As a result, the total revenue from property tax this year is likely to be around Rs 200 crore, which will be only 20% of the projected property tax revenue in the MCG’s budget.

The corporation struggled to generate revenue in the first quarter of this financial year due to the Covid-induced lockdown. A senior MCG official said that property tax collection was extremely slow in the first quarter, but geared up in the month of July. By the end of July, the civic body had collected around Rs 100 crore, he said.

Over four lakh properties are registered with MCG, but less than 1.4 lakh owners have paid property tax, the collection of which has been a recurrent problem for the civic body. The corporation had set the target of recovering Rs 250 crore as property tax in the 2018-2019 fiscal, but received only Rs 196 crore. In the next fiscal, it managed to collect only Rs 166 crore against the target of Rs 250 crore.

Earlier this month, MCG had served notices to 2,800 owners with unpaid property tax amounting to Rs 1 lakh or more to clear dues within 15 days, failing which they would lose sewerage and water connections.

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