Property Tax

SRINAGAR — The J&K Government on Tuesday ordered the imposition of property tax at five percent of taxable annual value (TAV) for residential properties and six percent for commercial properties in municipal areas of Jammu and Kashmir from April 1.

“In exercise of the power conferred by section 71A of the Jammu and Kashmir Municipal Act 2000, the government hereby notifies the rules for levy, assessment and collection of property tax in the municipalities and municipal councils of the Union Territory,” Housing and Urban Development Department, Principal Secretary, H Rajesh Prasad said in a notification. The rules also define TAV.

As per the rules of notification, a person liable to the property tax shall be liable to furnish to the officer authorized on this behalf particulars of property and tax due by May 30 financial year. The second installment of tax shall be furnished by November 30 along with proof of receipt of the first installment.

In case of failure to pay tax, a penalty of Rs 100 or one percent will be imposed, it said, adding the maximum penalty shall not exceed Rs 1,000.

There is a provision for inspection, assessment and reassessment in the Act. There is a provision for appeal to be made to the Director of local bodies until the board in this direction is set up, it said.

“Vacant lands, not appurtenant to a structure/building shall be exempt from property tax if there’s a Master Plan in force in the area, under which any construction/development on such vacant land is disallowed or if they have been put to agricultural use as per 6-monthly cropping surveys of the Revenue department,” the notification, as per the news agency GNS, reads.

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Similarly, it said, all the properties of the Municipality and all places of worship, including temples, masjids, gurudwaras, churches, ziarats, etc and cremation and burial grounds shall be exempt from payment of property tax.

“All properties owned by Government of India / UT Government shall be exempted from payment of Property Tax,” it said, adding, “However, service charge at the rate 3% of the taxable annual value shall be payable to the Municipality in respect of such properties.”

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National Conference vice president and former Chief Minister on Tuesday asked why people of J&K should pay state taxes including the proposed property tax.  

“’No Taxation Without Representation’. Why should people in J&K pay state taxes including the proposed property tax when we have no say in how our government is run & no say in the decision making of J&K,” he said in a tweet, adding, “We are expected to be mute spectators to all unjust decisions by Raj Bhavan.”

In a statement, National Conference decried the notification regarding the imposition of property tax in Jammu and Kashmir, saying the notification smacks of arbitrariness.

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Responding to the notification, party’s State Spokesperson Imran Nabi Dar said, “The people of Jammu and Kashmir have been at the receiving end economically since 2019 due to the losses suffered by August 5, 2019 lockdown and then the successive Covid lockdowns. The imposition of the property tax will further push the people to the wall. Such decisions will make the situation even worse.”

Questioning the haste in which such decisions are taken in absence of a democratically elected government, Imran said,  “Such matters should be left to an elected government. The people’s representatives must be given an opportunity to discuss these issues. Unfortunately, such important issues don’t face public scrutiny in the current bureaucratic setup. It has become a habit of those in power in Delhi to issue orders, irrespective of their impact or public opinion.”

He termed this decision anti-people and a grave injustice and demanded its immediate rollback. “Such revenue generation measures must be left to a democratically elected government in J&K,” he added.

JKPCC chairman Sajjad Gani Lone tweeted: “Property tax in aftermath of a year lost post-2019, a couple of years lost in Covid seems determined to turn every stone that can be turned to ensure economic euthanasia. Governments have pumped billions worldwide to bump start ailing economies. In wonderment.”

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