If everything goes as per plans, the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) could collect at least Rs 800 crore as property tax from 3.5 lakh defaulters.
The BBMP Commissioner Siddaiah told the Palike Council on Wednesday that directions have been issued to revenue officers to take up verification of properties, whose owners have suppressed facts. On an average, the property tax dues in each ward is about Rs five crore, he added.
“The BBMP has taken up verification of records submitted by property owners under the SAS. By the end of March, the officers have to finish the task. We will impose penalise property owners who furnish false information,” said Siddaiah.
He said, in the last one-and-half months, commercial properties in 10,000 sq ft area and above were verified and 6,750 properties were found to have defaulted taxes to the tune of nearly Rs 200 crore. He said, the BBMP will now take up verification of properties on 3,000 sq ft area.
He said in Whitefield alone, at least 86 property owners defaulted about Rs 46 crore in tax while in Jayanagar the amount is put at Rs 36 crore. A tech park with a built-up area of 27 lakh sq ft shows only 11 lakh sq ft on record, he said. Another five-star hotel has paid only Rs 26 lakh property tax as against the pending Rs 87 lakh.
He said there are many apartments which are not on Palike's record because they do not possess any khata. Citing an example, he said, there are about 480 flats in Rajarajehwari Nagar alone which do not have khata. He said the Palike will not hesitate to seize the properties of the defaulters.
Siddaiah lashed out at the revenue officers for failing to collect property tax and said the Palike does not need officers who cannot generate revenue. “I am getting the survey of the properties done by the chief engineers, CFOs, executive engineers and junior level engineers, despite having many revenue officers in the BBMP.
I have made the engineers accountable for the suppression of facts,” said Siddaiah. Speaking about the drum beating drive, Siddaiah said it has helped the Palike to generate good revenue. He said the names of the defaulters will be displayed prominently at public places and will be shared with the local corporators.