Monday 25 October 2021

Whether occupier of property is liable to pay property tax if he files Municipal appeal?

 It is not possible to accept this submission. Section 209 as already clarified above, deals with the case of liability for payment of property taxes as far as occupiers are concerned. The bill is raised on the person primarily liable for payment of property tax. If the person primarily liable is not the occupier of the premises, then, the bill may be raised on the occupier and after it is served on him the recovery can be effected in accordance with section 199 to 209 of the MMC Act. While recovering taxes, the arrears cannot be recovered from such occupiers under section 209, if the same have remained due for more than one year. Thus, the recovery in terms of section 209 cannot be effected if the property tax has remained in arrears for more than one year. It is not possible to extend the provision and particularly sub-section 3 of 209 and read it into section 217(5) of the Act. It will be defeating the Legislative Mandate if such a reading of the provision is permitted. The word "payable" is used in sub-section 5 only to point out that after the appeal is filed the payment of property taxes which are due on the basis of the original and the increased rateable can be secured during the pendency of the appeal provided it is claimed from the appellant by issuing bills from time to time, since filing of the appeal. Therefore, to secure further sum till such time as the appeal is decided that sub-section 5 has been introduced in the Statute Book. In other words to enable and facilitate the corporation to effect recovery of property taxes levied and assessed at the original rate and to secure the claim on the basis of the revised or increased rateable value that this provision is made. Taxes are public dues and their recovery should not be hampered in any manner because challenge to the levy and assessment is pending before a court of law, is the intent in inserting sub-section (5) in the Act. That intent will be defeated if it is held that operation of this provision is controlled and restricted by section 209(3) of the MMC Act. That section serves another purpose. Once, the Legislature does not provide for any restriction and enacts the law in absolute terms full effect must be given to the provision or else the object and purpose of its insertion is defeated and frustrated. Once its introduction is understood in proper perspective, then, it is not difficult to reject the submissions of Mr.Joglekar.{Para 22}



Dena Bank & Anr. Vs. Municipal Corporation Of Gr. Mumbai & Anr.

Writ Petition No.6816 of 2010

21st July, 2011

Citation: 2011(6) ALL MR 508

Read full Judgment here: Click here

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