RAWALPINDI: After getting approval from the Punjab government, the Excise, Taxation and Narcotics Control Department will impose a new tax on commercial units along highways in 24 areas of Rawalpindi district from July 1.

The department had given 30 days to owners of land and commercial units to present their written objections after which the objections will be referred to the provincial government for consideration.

A senior official from the department said the provincial government had decided to bring commercial units around national, provincial highways and motorways within the property tax net under the Punjab Finance Act, 2019.

“Tax will be collected from commercial units on the district collector’s rate of the land. The department hopes to collect additional revenue [Rs2 to Rs3 billion] and bring these commercial units under the tax net,” he said, adding that the department had launched a survey to identify these property units and categorise them accordingly.

The government’s aim is to collect property tax from people who, in the past, had not paid a penny as tax for their earnings, he said, adding that there were hotels, restaurants, shopping malls, factories and other commercial units along highways across the province but civic bodies in these respective areas did not receive property tax from their owners.

Excise and Taxation District Officer Sameer Ahmed told Dawn that tax would be imposed in the next fiscal year.

The provincial government wants to expand its tax net henceforth it decided to collect money from commercial units other than agricultural land as these areas do not fall under the control of the city’s administration, he said, adding survey teams identified 24 areas in Rawalpindi district initially.

He said the tax will be imposed on the value of property according to the district collector’s rate of land in the area, adding, objections will be sent to the government by end of March.

According to the government’s notification, the areas identified for imposition of tax include Kiran Gull Road, Dina Nath Road, Sohawa-Chakwal Road, Pir Phalai–Gilyana Road, Daultala Road (Thakara Mor to PSO Pump), G.T. Road (Majeed Mor to PSO Pump), (Fiazan CNG to Masa Kaswal), Kazan Road (Mubarak Hospital to Bewal Raja Market), Mandra-Chakwal Road (Mandra Chakwal Mor to Punjab Patrolling Check Post), G.T. Road (Total Petrol Pump to Chakwal Mor), Kallar Syedan Road, Kahuta Road, Chakri Road, Motorway Chakri Road South side, Kashmir Highway (Chattar to Chita Mor), Bhurban Road (Kashmir Bazaar to PC Hotel), Expressway Road (Masjid Al-Rehman to Phulgraan), Expressway Road (Golria Restaurant to Patriata Chair lift), Ayubia Road (Usmania Madrisa to Bun Road and Barian Bazaar), NHA Road (Muzaffarabad Road to Service Shoe Kashmir Road) and Chakri Road (Imambargah to Chakri Rest Area).

Published in Dawn, February 17th, 2021

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