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Panchayats face funds crunch

Panchayats face funds crunch
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The Panchayati Raj department is facing difficulties to collect house taxes from public as the sarpanches are not actively involved in it due to...

Vizianagaram: The Panchayati Raj department is facing difficulties to collect house taxes from public as the sarpanches are not actively involved in it due to various political reasons.

The pending bills are accumulated to Rs 18 crore so far. If the taxes are collected on time, the panchayatis can spend that amount on infrastructure development works and can provide more facilities.

Major panchayatis like Cheepurupalli, S Kota, Kothavalasa have failed to collect house taxes to the tune of more than Rs 40 lakhs. The panchayati sarpanches and ward members need to work in a coordinated manner to collect the house taxes.

But the local leaders are reluctant to force the public to pay the houses taxes. The sarpanches feel that if they force public on payment of taxes it will hit their relations and they may not vote for them in next elections.

So that they are keeping away from this responsibility and even obstructing the Panchayat Raj staff from collecting the taxes.

The sarpanches are depending on the grants coming from Union and State governments and not interested to improve their internal income sources.

R Poli Naidu, a sarpanch of Kummarikunta, said “Public are not habituated to pay the house taxes for the past few years. If we force them to pay the bills they will maintain distance with me.”

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