Property tax mismatch worth crores in BBMP, alleges BJP

Property tax mismatch worth crores in BBMP, alleges BJP

The BJP has accused the BBMP of allowing the leakage of property tax revenue worth crores by not implementing the integrated technology platform.

Addressing reporters on Monday, former mayors S K Nataraj and B S Sathyanarayana, former corporator S Harish and BJP spokesperson S Prakash said there was a mismatch of Rs 5,649 crore between the actual payments and the one reflected on the Palike's portal. They said the commissioners, officials of information technology department and accounts sections were responsible for the mismatch.

Harish cited a letter from the Indian Centre for Social Transformation (ICST) to the BBMP commissioner on March 19, 2016, a copy of which was circulated to the reporters. He said the ICST wanted to streamline the BBMP's financial operations and accounting. Prior to ICST's intervention, the BBMP was only issuing hand-written receipts to the public. He added that ICST discovered that no time-bound bank reconciliation was being done, resulting in large scale leakage, misuse, misappropriation and even fraud.

The letter read, “On a request from the BBMP, an integrated technology platform BBMP-GPMS-FMS, e-governance cloud computing system was developed by ICST and was implemented in all departments of BBMP except the revenue department and for property tax collections.”

ICST noted that an analysis of the property tax receipts for the year 2012-13 and 2013-14 revealed large scale variation.

“According to the revenue department's statistics, collection under property tax head during the above period was shown as Rs 6,680 crore but the GPMS-FMS online figure shows collection under property tax head as only Rs 1,031 crore, a mismatch of Rs 5,649 crore. This is a very serious issue and the revenue department and the IT department together with the accounts department of BBMP have to explain how such financial irregularity was allowed to happen,” ICST wrote in the letter.

The four BJP leaders said officials should be held accountable for creating a financial mess despite a strong and robust platform being created.

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