The Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is trying to woo the voters ahead of the civic polls in the three municipal corporations of Delhi namely North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC), South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) and East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) with its announcement to abolish residential house tax. However, taking a look at the financial records of the three municipal corporations suggest that those who stand to benefit most from the waiver of property tax will be owners of properties in upscale colonies. Also, any such waiver will impact civic services such as sanitation, primary health and education because property tax earnings are utilised to provide these services, reported The Indian Express.
The election to three municipal corporations of Delhi (MCD) will be held on April 23. These bodies constitute 272 seats, with NDMC and SDMC accounting for 104 seats each, while 64 seats fall under EDMC. The counting of votes will take place on April 26, 2017. All properties in Delhi are divided into eight categories – from A to H – and each category pays a different rate per square meter to the civic bodies. For category A, the rate is Rs 630 per square metre; for Category B, the rate is Rs 500/sq m. The rate is Rs 400/sq m for Category C; Rs 320/sq m for Category D; Rs 270/sq m for Category E; Rs 230/sq m for Category F; Rs 200/sq m for Category G and, Rs 100/sq m for colonies in Category H, where they are not rural. In the South and North corporations, over 40 percent of property tax comes from the top four categories.
You may also like to watch:
Ahead of the polls, the AAP said it has made a full study of the finances of the MCD and the process of making amendments in the Delhi Municipal Corporation Act, 1957 before making the promise on the waiver. And when it comes to power in the MCDs, it can and it will abolish house tax, said the party in its statement. However, the poll promise has worried the officials. According to a former municipal commissioner KS Mehra, a waiver will “certainly benefit those living in the posh colonies of Delhi” but at the same time, it will adversely affect obligatory functions of the corporations.