RMC starts home visits to collect property tax
Ranchi Municipal Corporation (RMC) has started collecting holding tax from houses as online payments aren’t possible because its official website remains defunct, officials said on Monday.
Sri Enterprises, a third-party agency roped in by RMC for collection of holding tax, has appointed as many as 75 tax collectors to visit houses of city residents on request and collect their holding tax either in cheque or cash, said Vaibhav Kumar, a manager with the agency.
“Any person willing to get their holding tax collected from their residence can make a phone call to RMC and make a request. The concerned tax collector of the ward will visit the person’s residence within 24 hours and collect holding tax,” said Kumar.
As per records with the RMC, there are as many 53 wards in urban Ranchi and tax collectors have been assigned different wards depending on their population and surface area. “Some wards have three to five tax collectors, while some wards have only one tax collector depending on the population,” Kumar said.
Ranchi deputy mayor Sanjiv Vijaywargiya said the initiative of collecting tax from the residence of city residents was taken in order to avoid crowding at the RMC office and ensure smooth tax payment despite not having the option of online payment.
“We are trying our level best to make tax payment hassle-free for the people of Ranchi. We had even asked the state authorities to waive off the penalty for late payment of tax, but they did not agree,” Vijaywargiya said.
Soon after the JMM-led alliance government was formed in Jharkhand, it decided to rope in a new third-party agency, Sri Enterprises, for tax collection on behalf of RMC. Sparrow, the agency which was doing the job during the former Raghubar Das-led government, was shown the door.
The website, according to RMC officials, has been undergoing a software update since October last year. Sources said the new agency roped in to do the job on behalf of RMC was facing teething issues, which lasted for longer than usual due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
However, all property owners who had not paid tax yet will have to pay a penalty along with their holding tax irrespective of the reason for the delay in payment, Vijaywargiya said. The decision of not giving relaxations on tax penalty comes at a time when the government has been asking people to stay indoors and use online modes of payment in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.