BENGALURU: Rame Gowda, a businessman received the shock of his life when he received a challan from the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) specifying the property tax he had to pay this year as Rs 1,10,445. The property in question was the same 3,500 square feet house in Chickpet for which he had paid a tax of Rs 15,740 last year.
For the last four days, Gowda has been frequenting the BBMP office trying to make the officials understand that a blunder has been committed in the assessment but to no avail. “I was told that it is a technical problem in their system,” he told Express.
Mohan Kumar, another businessman, who owns a 1,300 square feet property in Kumara Krupa Road was also presented with an inflated bill of Rs 17,000 compared to the Rs 11,000 paid last year. “I am the sole occupant of my residential property. When I checked with BBMP officials, they told me half my asset had been listed as rented property and the remainder as residential. It was attributed to a software glitch,” he recalled. The local BBMP office staff asked him to fill Form IV and submit it at an office in Queen’s Road. “Who has the time to do this when it is a mistake by the BBMP?” he rhetorically poses.
Madhav Nagar resident Prakash Chand Tirgal is determined not to pay his tax this year as he ended up paying the tax twice last year for his property measuring 600 square feet. “I paid Rs 24,385 using a debit card at a BBMP office and the transaction failed. I was told to swipe my card again. When I received my bank statement, I understood that both transactions were successful,” he said.
Having been unsuccessful in getting the reimbursement yet, he has visited the BBMP office four times in a bid to make them adjust the payment with this year.
Asked about the issues, M K Gunashekar, Taxation and Finance Committee Chairman, BBMP said, “There was a software issue and it has been fixed now. Some property owners enter the wrong zone online when they want to find the tax details. When the wrong zone is entered, the tax amount will definitely show a variance over that of the previous year.”