MUMBAI: The property tax payment deadline is just 15 days away, but the BMC's collection system has been on the blink since a week, hugely inconveniencing Mumbaikars. It may take afew more days to be up again.
The approaching deadline has left tax-payers anxious. They have demanded the BMC extend the last date for payment.
The crashing of the system, which was unable to cope with the load of applications for calculation, collection and complaint redressal as well as the voluminous data, has severely hit bill payment at citizen facilitation centres (CFCs).
Online payment was discontinued after the new property tax system was introduced. Queuing up at CFCs across the 24 wards is, therefore, the only option available. And currently, they are not functional.
One harried Mumbaikar, who lives in Vile Parle and owns two properties in south Mumbai , said, "Since we can pay the tax at any ward office, I landed up at Andheri (West) to pay more than Rs 2 lakh in tax. Thinking it would be crowded, I reached the office exactly at 10am. Instead, I found the counter window was shut. The staff asked me to come after a week as the software had crashed." He is now worried that if the issue is not resolved till the September 30 deadline, he may be penalized "for no fault of mine".
This year, the BMC has sent across bills to 2.8 lakh properties across the city. The first set of bills for three years-2010-2013- were issued in January and calculated on the basis of the new capital value system (see box). The other bills for 2013-2014 , also issued under the new system, were sent in June. The deadline to pay both is September 30.
Civic officials said following the software and server glitch, the system stopped accepting payment information and generating receipts.
"The system is overloaded. But we have almost sorted out the issue. By Monday, transactions were even carried out at some centres. But it will take another three to four days for it to normalize," S S Shinde, joint municipal commissioner, told TOI. The system is being upgraded.
BMC's property tax system has been on the blink since a week due to data and application overload. This has hit tax payment across all the 24 wards
BILLS AND PAYMENT DEADLINE
This January, BMC sent final bills for 2010-2013 after switching over from the rateable value system to the capital value system Similarly, in June, it processed bills for 2013-2014 The deadline to pay both the bills is September 30 More than 2.8 lakh bills have been sent across.
WHAT IS CAPITAL VALUE SYSTEM?
The new structure will be based on a property's current market value.
Tax will be calculated on the basis of 5 factors - property's price, area, building's age, use and type of construction.