BENGALURU: The State Government is making all efforts to shore up revenue collection in the last quarter of the financial year, but delayed policy decisions seem to be hampering the efforts. The government’s failure to act in time to address the massive staff shortage has made it difficult for the Transport Department to meet targets.
According to sources, the department has just 130 Motor Vehicle Inspectors as against the sanctioned strength of 430. “The role of MV Inspectors is very crucial. They are the executive staff involved in the enforcement efforts as well as other tasks,” sources said. “The huge staff shortage is impacting efforts to generate revenue had also put undue burden on the staff,” the sources said.
The problem is attributed to the delay in starting the recruitment process by the previous governments. In 2016, the government had started the process to recruit 130 Inspectors, but that is yet to be completed. “The whole process was delayed due to various reasons, including legal issues, as some people went to court. Now, it has been sorted out and the process will be completed soon,” sources added.
The Transport Department was given a target of Rs 7,100 crore in tax collection, but so far only Rs 4,864.80 crore has been generated. Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, who recently held a meeting to review tax collection from various departments, had stated that the government estimates a deficit of Rs 300 crore in the Transport Department by the end of March.
A dip in vehicle sales was one of the reasons for it, while revenue generation from enforcement of the Motor Vehicles (MV) Act too has taken a hit. The CM had also directed the officials to take stern action against tax evasion and violations of the MV Act. Sources said that in the last financial year, about Rs 180 crore was collected through enforcement of the MV Act, but the staff shortage is making it difficult this year. “It has become difficult to put enough people on enforcement duties and this is impacting the tax collections,” rued an official.
The tasks of the inspectors include enforcement of the MV Act, issuing driving licences and fitness certificates, and overseeing operations at border check-posts. In some cases, the Inspectors work in three-shifts. “We are not been able to depute enough Inspectors for enforcement,” said a Regional Transport Officer.