DMC, G&M, Forest deptts asked to clarify

DMC, G&M, Forest deptts asked to clarify
PAC volunteers manning New Field check gate in Dimapur on Thursday. (NP)
Staff Reporter DIMAPUR, SEP 19 (NPN) | Publish Date: 9/19/2019 11:02:06 AM IST

As a result of the ongoing week-long “Operation Check Gate” spearheaded by Public Action Committee (PAC) from September 16, 2019 with volunteers of tribe-affiliates of Naga Council Dimapur (NCD), wholesale prices of various commodities has witnessed a fall. 

Asked by this Reporter on the fallout of the PAC drive, a vegetable dealer informed that wholesale price (not retailer as reported) of potato has come down to Rs.10 to Rs.12 for a bag of 60 kgs. It was also disclosed that wholesale prices of tomato has marginally come down from Rs.40 to Rs.35 and onion from Rs.50 to Rs.45 per kg respectively.

 The cascading of prices of various commodities in the market was also noticed and expected to further reduce depending on how effective the drive against illegal and unabated tax is taken up. On the fourth day of the ongoing drive Thursday, PAC volunteers found a DMC’s contract-leasee for livestock at Burma Camp gate, issuing duplicate challan (Xeroxed copy) instead of the original issued by DMC office. The challans also did not bear the signature of the official contract-leasee. A truck driver when questioned said he has been paying whatever amount demanded but the challans reflected much lesser amount. PAC volunteers also found that DMC contract-leassees were collecting Rs.800 for pickup trucks bringing in poultry as against Rs.70 as fixed by DMC and state government. 

PAC officials had to order the DMC’s contract-leassees to issue only DMC official challans and rate as fixed by DMC. 

DMC asked to clarify

Meanwhile, ACAUT Nagaland has demanded clarification from Dimapur Municipal Council (DMC) to as to the specific approval of the tax supposed to be levied on cement.

ACAUT through its media cell maintained that there could be provision of octroi for municipality to tax but questioned why it was charging Rs 2.50 tax per bag of cement in spite of GST bill along with e-way bill ? 

ACAUT pointed out that as per Nagaland GST Act, 2017 section 173 states that municipality taxes “shall stand annulled” and in other cases subsumed. It said GST billing automatically includes the Nagaland State Government share of tax benefits. 

Further, ACAUT also pointed out that imposing “royalty tax” was for produce from one’s own state and by taxing royalty on minerals produced from other states by the forest department and geology and mining department amounted to double taxation. ACAUT said this action has compromised the legality of the true sense of royalty tax as it was not inter-chargable between two states.

ACAUT has, therefore, sought clarification and requested the responsible authority to rectify the matter at the earliest. 

Meanwhile, ACAUT has extended its support and cooperation to PAC to realise the public resolution of “one government one tax”.

PAC stops royalty tax 

Public Action Committee (PAC) has re-affirmed its earlier decision to prevent collection(s) of royalty by forest department and geology & mining department until the state government gave a clear decision and made known the outcome to the public. This was despite the Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Dimapur directing range officers and beat officers in the district to immediately suspend revenue collection at check gates. 

 PAC co-convener K Ghokheto Chophy and secretary Hilo Semp have requested DC Dimapur to take immediate action on the representation submitted by the PAC in this regard. 

PAC has also asked DMC to immediately display charts of all commodities in all the designated toll booths. It also demanded that collections of toll tax at any undesignated toll booth/points be withdrawn or stopped immediately. 

 PAC disclosed that transporters at the meeting Thursday, informed that price of sand (Deopani) has dropped by Rs.4000 per truck load after illegal taxations were stopped during the past four days. PAC also said prices of other essential commodities have also come down. 

At a meeting with DMC and food & civil supply (F&CS) department, PAC said it has emerged that prices were controlled and regulated by three departments - DMC, F&CS department in coordination with DCCI and which has been causing fluctuation of prices in the market. 

PAC said this resulted in syndicates, leassees and other agencies to encroach and inflate the market prices.PAC said that prices of all commodities have not been regulated since 2012 by the authority. 

 PACtherefore, appealed to the district administration to issue public notification as to who was the rightful authority to control/regulate the market prices to oversee and regulate.

Vety deptt denies 

Department of veterinary & animal husbandry has denied the report that it had leased collection of fee/tax on livestock as with other departments such as DMC, forest and geology & mining. This was stated by Director of Vety & Animal Husbandry Dr.Temsumeren Ao. 

The denial was in relation to the report on September 17 in which an underage boy was found collecting fee/tax for the department by the PAC volunteers.

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