Visakhapatnam: Opposition corporators demand rollback of hike in property tax
Strongly oppose levying of garbage cess as people are already burdened due to the pandemic-induced losses
Visakhapatnam: The second council meeting of the Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation witnessed heated arguments over the much-debated proposal of levying property tax based on the land value as the TDP, Jana Sena corporators along with Left parties opposed it strongly.
Protests erupted both inside and outside the council hall during the council meeting scheduled at 8 am on Wednesday, presided over by GVMC Mayor Golagani Hari Venkata Kumari.
The TDP, JSP and Left Party corporators demanded the GVMC Mayor to ensure withdrawal of the property tax hike and increase in garbage cess as they would be an additional burden on people who are already reeling under pandemic-induced losses.
It may be recalled that the first GVMC council meeting was held on March 9 and the discussions were largely centred on the withdrawal of privatisation of Visakhapatnam Steel Plant, among other issues. However, the second one focused on the removal of the proposed property tax.
Along with the proposal of the property tax, corporators expressed their opinion on the user charge levied on garbage collection to the Mayor. Addressing various issues, GVMC Commissioner G Srijana and officials concerned explained them in detail.
This time, the GVMC readied a 140-point agenda to discuss in the meeting that was organised with adherence to Covid-19 protocols. However, 138 points were approved by the council. Works pertaining to sewage treatment plants and other development works formed a part of the agenda.
Meanwhile, protests were staged outside the GVMC building. Pushing a dustbin, the 78th ward corporator B Ganga Rao demanded removal of user charge on garbage collection. Police had a tough time controlling the protestors. Some of them were bundled up in the vehicle and taken to the police station.
The council meeting was attended by Deputy Mayor Jiyani Sridhar, Visakhapatnam MP MVV Satyanarayana, MLA Vasupalli Ganesh Kumar, Tippala Nagireddy, MLC PVN Madhav and D Rama Rao, among others.