Pune Municipal Corporation and Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited will partner up to detect illegal commercial use of residential premises . PMC earns around Rs1,200-1,300 crore a year from property tax .
PUNE: Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) and Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (MSEDCL) will partner up to detect illegal commercial use of residential premises.To rule out improper usage, electricity consumption, model of meters, and other items will be cross checked.The PMC wants to ensure that unauthorised use of residential premises for commercial purposes is strictly prohibited.A future course of action will be decided on after the test, according to Ajit Deshmukh, head of PMCs property tax division.A special recovery drive will be undertaken for charging dues, which would be similar to a commercial levy.For industrial uses, separate electricity meters are needed.The number of such connections and commercial locations will be cross checked.According to Deshmukh, if occupants of residential buildings are discovered to be using them for commercial use, they will face prosecution under municipal laws. The municipal office takes several measures to recover taxes, including the repossession of buildings, the issuance of notices, sealing the property for a restricted period, etc.The PMC has 4.5 lakh property tax defaulters.Nearly 1.90 million properties are listed as commercial.According to the civic body, 1lakh more houses are rented for small and large businesses. According to municipal authorities, the PMC earns around Rs1,200-1,300 crore a year from property tax.For the upcoming fiscal, a target of Rs2,300 crore has been set.Due to this, many traders avoid paying commercial tax.It is nearly two times more expensive than residential tax. The PMC should also ensure that habitual tax defaulters are denied waivers.According to Vivek Velankar of Sajag Nagrik Manch, a citizen group, schemes do not make this distinction.