The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Rethink on water tax rule

With pressure mounting from various quarters, the government has decided to revise the water tax rule which came into force in all municipal areas a fortnight ago. Municipal affairs and urban development minister Asok Bhattacharya said on Saturday that the final rule would be announced within a fortnight.

“The rule was only a draft version. We have decided to revise it after several municipalities pointed out certain discrepancies in it,’’ Bhattacharya said.

According to the rule imposed in the municipal areas, water tax has been fixed on the basis of property tax. The minimum tax will be Rs 30 and the maximum Rs 120. In Calcutta, however, water tax is determined on the basis of the ferrule-size of households.

“The tax would have been higher had we wanted to raise the entire amount invested in providing filtered water. But we want to cover the funds for operation and maintenance of the plants only. However, the rate of tax we have now decided on will meet our demands only in part,” he explained.

“We have asked the CMC to follow the same rule, or else the government will formulate a separate one for Calcutta,’’ he added. The municipal affairs department has already started working on a fresh set of rules for the CMC area.

nB-School opens: Eastern Institute of Management, a business school on JL Nehru Road, opened on Saturday. Affiliated to Kalyani University, the institute will offer three-year BBA and two-year MBA degrees.

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