SMSes from citizens to help nab tax evaders
To check property tax defaulters, The Pune Municipal Corporation has started using a specialised helpline system.
In this system, any citizen can provide information about suspected defaulters by sending an SMS on any of the six mobile numbers provided by the PMC.
“We want to keep a check on defaulters and who have given their residences on rent for office use. There are many owners who have rented their flats to office people but are not disclosing it to get a property tax rebate. After getting an SMS, our staff will verify documents and recover the amount,” said Hemant Nikam, Deputy Commissioner and head of tax collection.
There is a 40 per cent property tax rebate for house owners. But it is not applicable for owners who have rented their flat. “We can recover around Rs 12 crore if we succeed in identifying 5,000 such properties. 4.5 lakh owners are paying regular property tax in Pune. Last year, we received an assessment of Rs 26,000. We collected Rs 18,76,00,000 tax in just eight days. This year’s target is Rs 750 crore.” Nikam added.
The numbers on which citizens can send an SMS are 8308841081, 8308841082, 8308841083, 8308841085, 8308841086, 8308841087. In the SMS, the complainant has to write the name and detailed address of the defaulter. The identity of the complainant will not be revealed.