Meanwhile, the decision is yet to be implemented, since the BMC will have to form a policy for it.
Mumbai: The role of licence inspectors may be eliminated thanks to a new bill that was passed by the state Assembly recently to relax rules for shops and establishments and promote the ease of doing business. Now, new shops employing less than 10 persons can get all permissions online without their owners having to get in touch with civic officials for various approvals.
Deputy municipal commissioner Nidhi Choudhary has proposed carry out inspections of only shops that employ less than 10 workers against which a complaint has been made. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) is considering transferring licence inspectors to the civic department mandated to take action against encroachments.
Incidentally, the BMC ordered a survey of all small-scale units and shops in L ward (Kurla and Sakinaka) by its officials to check for irregularities.
A civic official, requesting anonymity, said, “If the licence department is killed, no one can keep a tab on illegal activities in new and existing firms.”
When asked about the negative implications of ending the Licence Raj, Ms Choudhary said, “The civic body may no longer check each and every shop. Citizens should also understand what is wrong for them. Only in cases of special complaints, an inspection will be done of the shop premises.”
Meanwhile, the decision is yet to be implemented, since the BMC will have to form a policy for it. “Even if people are registering online, they still need to give intimation to the civic body. Inspectors will be required to cross-check that intimation,” said a senior civic official.
Loss of hire registration will cost BMC Rs 100 crore per annum
The bill that seeks to do away with the registration of employees if a shop or business establishment has less than 10 people working under it might cost the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) dearly. So far, if an establishment has one employee, it is required to register itself with the civic body by paying an amount of Rs 300. But thanks to the bill, a large number of shops employing less than 10 employees will be exempted from registering themselves, which in turn would result in a loss of at least Rs 100 crore per annum.
As per the data procured from the civic licence department, the BMC earned Rs 25 crore through registration fees and Rs 75 crore through trade refuse charge (TRC) between January 2017 and August 31, 2017.
“The BMC will lose out on that revenue, but we aren’t a profit-making organisation. We are for the citizens, and will carry out steps that will benefit the citizens,” said Nidhi Chowdhary, Deputy Municipal Commissioner (DMC).
In addition to the registration charges, the civic body also used to levy TRC on establishments, as the BMC collects the waste produced by firms. Meanwhile, the civic body can fine the person if any conditions as per the Act are not fulfilled while beginning the business.