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Many traders in Pune not paying LBT

Wednesday, 11 June 2014 - 7:44am IST | Agency: dna
The collection from local body tax is low compared to that of the earlier Octroi tax

From the day it was announced that Local Body Tax (LBT) would be replacing Octroi in municipal corporations, traders in Pune and Pimpri Chinchwad have been opposing it. The traders' community of Pune has been at the forefront in opposing LBT. They have pressured the state government enough, to cause chief minister Prithviraj Chavan himself to look into the issue. It has been found that LBT collection in the state is low compared to Octroi. This has led to several raids of shops in the city limits.

On April 1, 2013, when the state government abolished Octroi in both Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) and Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) and replaced it with LBT. Even before the state government implemented LBT, the traders' community had started agitating against the new tax and traders under the umbrella of Federation of Traders Associations of Pune (FTAP) went on strike from April 1 which lasted for nearly for a week.

Later, the traders' associations, in both Pune and Pimpri Chinchwad, went on strike in May claiming that LBT was stringent and would harass traders.
The strike went on for 13 days and finally the state state government intervened and directed civic authorities to not inspect any trader without prior permission of the state government. The strike was adjourned.
After the LBT collection was started, the officials of the LBT cell of PMC complained that many of the traders who were paying octroi did not register with PMC to pay LBT as a result of which revenue collection of LBT had gone down compared to octroi collection.
The civic administration in the month of November 2013, wrote a letter to the state government seeking permission to carry out raids against the shop owners who were not paying LBT. After getting approval from the state government, the LBT cell of PMC started carrying out raids on various shops from November which helped in increasing LBT collection.

Octroi collection
(From April 1 2012 to March 31, 2013)
Rs 1315.65 crore

LBT Collection
(From April 2013 to March 31, 2014
Rs 1323.74 crore
 




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