The outbreak of COVID-19 and the subsequent lockdown has completely affected the business of the city. Amid this difficult situation,NMC standing committee chairman Pintu Zalke has urged civic chief Tukaram Mundhe to reconsider reintroduction of new profession tax under Section 376 of Maharashtra Municipal Corporation Act-1949.As per the act, prior permission of the municipal commissioner has been made mandatory for starting a new business.Similarly,as per the resolution passed on August 22 last year, the businesses will have to apply in Format ‘A’in the zonal office of NMC for getting prior permission of municipal commissioner.
If anyone found to be violating this rule, action would be taken as per the rules framed and violators would have to pay penalty of Rs.100 per month.However, it is not clear that which of the businesses would come under the bracket of the new profession tax. The Municipal Corporation Act-1949 clearly states that municipal commissioner can impose taxes on such business activities as are found to be detrimental to the health of the society. Under such conditions, the profession tax should be imposed only on such business activities which are against the interest of the society.Pintu Zalke further suggested that the Municipal Commissioner reconsider implementation of Section 376 of the said Act. According to the Academic Act, any businessman who is found to be violating rules of COVID-19 is liable to pay fine of Rs.5000 for the first time. And for the second time, he would have to pay Rs.8000 and Rs.10000 for the third time.However, before taking such action, a notice should be issued to the shop keepers who are violators.Pintu Zalke stated.