Housing experts have also said it is nothing but an election gimmick to woo voters.
Mumbai: The state government has issued an ordinance that all residential and commercial structures up to 500 square feet in Mumbai will be exempt from paying property tax. The ordinance was issued last week to amend the Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act towards the new decision however Opposition parties have slammed the government for the timing of the ordinance ahead of the Lok Sabha polls.
Housing experts have also said it is nothing but an election gimmick to woo voters. The ordinance is through governor Ch. Vidyasagar Rao’s orders for immediate amendment in the Act as none of the parliament sessions are going on. The BMC had already passed its resolution in 2017 but the same was pending with the state government for final approval. The governor’s order was passed on March 10, the day election dates were announced.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) in its general body in July 2017 had passed the resolution on exemption of property tax for properties up to 500 square feet. BMC’s ruling party Shiv Sena, with full support from the BJP and Congress, passed the proposal. But, by giving final approval ahead of elections, the BJP-Shiv Sena will get credit for it, according to the Congress and experts.
Opposition leader in the BMC, Ravi Raja from the Congress, said, “The proposal was purposefully not tabled in the Assembly session. The Congress party also supported the decision in the BMC house. But passing the ordinance at this time is only to take the entire credit.”
Housing expert and advocate, Vinod Sampat said, “The step is nothing but an election gimmick to woo voters. The BJP and Shiv Sena benefit with this decision. Howe-ver, this ordinance passed by the governor has to be cleared by assembly within six months.”