by Yawar Hussain
SRINAGAR: The Badami Bagh Cantonment Board (BBCB) has started levying property tax in areas under its jurisdiction in the summer capital Srinagar.
As per locals in Sonwar, Indra Nagar, Batwara, and Shivoprra areas of Srinagar, the BBCB has sent them bills for the ongoing year on their residential properties.
“I received a bill of Rs 25000 for the period beginning from April 1, 2021, to March 31, 2022,” local said adding that the quality of civic facilities provided by the board “pathetic”.
The bills issued by the BBCB are under the “Section 66(a) Cantonment Act 2006”.
Locals said higher tax is being levied on the commercial properties in the area.
“No part of Srinagar or any other area of Jammu and Kashmir pays any tax on their own properties. This is a new gift after the abrogation of article 370,” a group of locals in Indra Nagar area of Srinagar said.
They said they won’t be paying the tax on their own properties which they have bought through their hard-earned money.
“In December 2019, the BBCB sent officials asking us to vacate the 500-meter radius area around the cantonment as they wanted to buy it,” locals alleged, adding that they had back then decided to go to court on the matter.
“They backed down after we decided to not budge.”
Locals said the BBCB has been charging sanitation fees from the locals over the years but the condition of roads and other civic amenities in the area continues to be poor.
Earlier in February this year, the Government of Jammu and Kashmir had issued a notification imposing property tax through urban local
bodies (Municipal Corporation, Committees) in their respective areas across Union Territory.
However, after hue and cry, the government said the tax is not being imposed immediately.