In a move aimed at improving accountability, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) will tax individual flat owners directly, rather than buildings. This civic body made the decision as some flat owners refused to contribute, forcing building societies to chip in on their behalf, reports DNA.
The order was sanctioned under section 155 of the Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act, 1888 on August 6, the report added.
A BMC officer told the paper, “In the event of default or non-payment by a member, the society has to clear the bills to avoid action. Now, with members paying taxes individually, BMC will be in a position to initiate action directly against the flat owner in the case of default.”
Maharashtra Societies Welfare Association chief Ramesh Prabhu welcomed the move as collecting the amount from society members was a ‘herculean task’ as they harboured the belief there were no direct consequences.
“With BMC’s decision to raise property tax bills flat-wise, it will be easier for the civic body to initiate action directly against the erring member. BMC can now attach and directly auction the flat,” Prabhu said.
The civic authority had in FY19 collected property tax of Rs 5,082 crore against a target of Rs 5,206 crore.
Property tax is applicable in full on homes which carpet area in excess of 700 square feet, while those sized 500-700 sq ft get a 60 per cent tax cut, and those smaller than 500 sq ft are exempt.