The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Tenants told to raise tax dues

A division bench of Calcutta High Court on Tuesday advised the tenants of four buildings of Karnani Mansion to raise funds to pay off the Calcutta Municipal Corporation’s (CMC) property-tax dues. According to the CMC, these four buildings owed it Rs 1.5 crore.

Appeals filed by the CMC against different orders of Justice B. Bhattacharya with regard to cutting off water supply to the tenants of Karnani Mansion came up for hearing during the day. Cases involving tenants of four of the 10 buildings of Karnani Mansion were heard during the day by Justice S. Bannerjee and Justice P.N. Sinha. The addresses of these four buildings are 25A, 25B, 27A and 27 B, Park Street.

The landlords of the buildings told the court that tenants were not paying rent. “How can we pay taxes if tenants are not paying the rent'” they asked. They appealed to the court to direct the CMC to attach the rent.

The tenants, however, rejected the landlords’ proposal and said they were making money by turning the courtyard into a parking lot and from a restaurant in one of the buildings.

The division bench directed the CMC to submit an affidavit, stating how much it expected as property tax from these four buildings.

The CMC authorities had disconnected the water supply to 10 of the 17 buildings in Karnani Mansion. A number of petitions were filed before Justice B. Bhattacharya of Calcutta High Court, asking him to intervene in the matter.

Justice Bhattacharya had passed several orders asking the CMC to restore water supply to the tenants. The court adjourned the hearing of the case till September 4.

A number of tax-payers had challenged the validity of the amended CMC rules, which empowered it to disconnect water supply for non-payment of property taxes in time.

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