Nagpur News : The money mess in Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) appears to be its own. The efforts of Municipal Commissioner to bail out the civic body from present financial crisis following enforcement of Local Body Tax (LBT) are going in vain. The NMC departments on which the top boss is banking to increase the much needed revenue are playing the spoilers and thus diluting his efforts. One such department is Town Planning Department. The Department is tacitly making NMC poorer and poorer and at the same time turning realtors or builders richer and richer. The Town Planning Department has been found not recovering the mandatory LBT at the time of sanctioning maps of dozens of buildings. The non-recovery of LBT by Town Planning Department, obviously with babu-builder nexus, is denting the NMC coffers in crores, according to revelations of a LBT raid.
It is pertinent to recall that recovery of LBT while sanctioning the building maps is mandatory in accordance with LBT Act. The rules say that the recovery of LBT varies in construction of buildings. For first three floors of a building, LBT at the rate of Rs 100 per sq mtr is levied, from fourth floor to seventh floor, the LBT is charged at the rate of Rs 150 per sq mtr and for above seventh floor a flat rate of Rs 200 per sq mtr has to be levied. However, it was awfully found that the Town Planning Department was recovering the LBT from a few realtors or builders and letting many others off the hook obviously for ‘bountiful’ reasons. The ‘dirty deals’ got exposed when LBT Department raided an under-construction mall being built by NMC on ‘BOT’ basis. Construction of the mall in Jaripatka is going on in full swing despite no recovery of LBT by the Town Planning Department while sanctioning maps of the mall and thus denting the NMC coffers in crores, revealed the raid.