PUNE: After Pune, it could be destination Nashik for industry as Pune is fast running out of land. The vigorous land acuisition by the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) and private industry here is soon going to ensure this.

Sources said that the state government’s industrial infrastructure development arm is looking to create a land bank of between 10,000-20,000 hectares in the two cities, Pune and Nashik, with emphasis on the latter.

However, the attraction of destination Pune remains. MIDC is looking to acquire land for which notifications have been issued at Ranjangaon, Talegaon, Chakan, Karla and Khed.

The state government is believed to have received 1800 applications for the Chakan industrial area, 1100 for Ranjangaon and 600 for Talegaon. The land bank with the MIDC, Pune region, is close to being exhausted and it is facing problems in acquiring new land.

Industry experts think Nashik will prove to be the alternative to Pune. “Nashik, with it’s huge land availability, abudant water supply and connectivity with Mumbai offers ideal locations. It has got mild climate like Pune too,” sources said.
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  • Faulty assessment led to 50% less property tax recovery in Nashik: Municipal Commissioner The demand at present is Rs 80-82 crore whereas it should have been Rs 160 crore, Tukaram Mundhe saidSumita Sarkar | TNN | April 06, 2018, 13:00 IST

    NASHIK: Municipal commissioner Tukaram Mundhe on Thursday said that incorrect and incomplete assessment of properties led to lesser than actual tax demand.

    The demand at present is Rs 80-82 crore whereas it should have been Rs 160 crore, he said, adding that he has brought about tax reforms for the first time in Nashik Municipal Corporation and that the civic budget for 2019-20 would be good.

    “Since 1998-99 there has not been any change in rateable value of properties. Hence, the tax base is less as also the tax demand. Tax was recovered only on carpet area. From this year onwards tax will be recovered on built-up area. Also, there has been no tax on land. Till now tax was recovered only for 17,519 open plots. From this year onwards, tax will be recovered from every plot in the corporation limits, including the space left after construction,” Mundhe said.

    He said that every year the rateable value has to be declared before the financial year. Hence, the base rate for properties in 2018-19 had to be declared. Except Nashik, these tax reforms were done everywhere. The reforms are for all government buildings as well.

    “Till now assessment of properties was done at the divisional offices due to which the main office of the NMC did not have control over it. Therefore, there were lacunae in assessment. This year onwards, the NMC head office will be conducting the assessment. With all these reforms, the tax recovery will go up from Rs 80 crore to Rs 250 crore,” Mundhe said.

    “I have only fixed the rateable value of new properties. This rate will not change till it is demolished and reconstructed or rateable value is changed to capital value. Every year rateable value of new properties will be declared,” he added.

    Explaining about the increase in property tax he said that it would be what the general body had approved, that is, 18%, and due to this the demand on properties already under tax net would rise from Rs 80 crore to Rs 160 crore.

    “The hike of 40 paise to Rs 1.6 for some properties is not for property tax but for fixing the rateable value for new properties in that area. Though old buildings will have to pay the tax as per the old rateable value, assessment of old properties will be done and tax will be levied on the vacant land,” Mundhe said.

    He also said that as part of the tax reforms, the NMC has also started the process of attaching properties and auctioning them to recover the tax.

    “Demand, which is the bill, has to be given in time to the property owner who has to pay within 90 days. On failing, we attach the property and then auction it. If it does not get auctioned then we can take it into our possession. For vacant land and vacant buildings we paste a notice of 21 days. If no one turns up we attach the property and auction it,” Mundhe added.


  • Nashik: Bombay HC to hear BSNL's plea on property tax on April 11 The NMC attached 16 of the 19 BSNL mobile towers spread across the city for pending property tax dues to the tune of Rs 1.97 croreSumita Sarkar | TNN | Updated: April 08, 2018, 11:02 IST

    NASHIK: The Bombay High Court will be hearing the case of Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd, Nashik that is opposing the property tax imposed by Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC), on April 11.

    The NMC attached 16 of the 19 BSNL mobile towers spread across the city for pending property tax dues to the tune of Rs 1.97 crore.

    The BSNL knocked the doors of the court 12 years back when it opposed the property tax with respect to three of its towers. The case is pending since then. They pleaded that they were not liable to pay property tax as these were towers. Since then the case was status quo. Now NMC sought legal advice and learnt that status quo is only for the three towers. Hence, the remaining 16 were attached.

    "BSNL again went to HC pleading stay on property tax demanded by us but scheduled the hearing on April 11," said an NMC official. When contacted BNSL officials said that they moved HC requesting it to grant status quo as like it had granted it for the three towers earlier.

    “We are service providers and not in a position to pay the huge dues. The hearing is on April 11,” said a BSNL official.

  • Waste segregation: NMC collects Rs 2.6 lakh fine TNN | Updated: Apr 7, 2018, 14:02 IST Representative image

    NASHIK: The civic body has collected Rs 2.62 lakh as finefrom 250 households and commercial establishments between April 1 and 5 for not segregating dry and wet waste at source. It has also served notices on 282 households for not segregating the waste while depositing it in garbage vans.

    The Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC) has made segregation of waste mandatory from April 1. Citizens have to hand over dry and wet waste separetely to garbage vans.

    The civic body has also started penalising traders for using plastic and collected fine of Rs 60,000. The fine was slapped as per the Maharashtra Biodegradable and Non-biodegradable Garbage (control) Act, 2006.

    Following the ban by the state government on use of all kinds of plastic and thermocol, the NMC had on last Friday issued a notification about plastic regulations.


  • Nashik has over 46 lakh trees, finds survey Tushar Pawar| TNN | Updated: Apr 7, 2018, 14:05 IST
    NASHIK: The ongoing tree census has so far counted over 46.5 lakh trees within the civic body’s jurisdiction.

    The census, which began in from November 2016, is expected to be completed in the next two months.

    The last tree count in the city was conducted manually in 2007 by the civic body’s garden department, which counted 20 lakh trees in over 160 species.

    “We have completed the survey in most parts of the city. The survey at three areas, two in Nashik Road and one in Trimbak Road, are remaining,” NMC sources said.

    The 46.5 lakh trees consist of 250 species, of which 70 are rare, the sources said. Of the total trees counted so far, 65% is on government land, while the rest is on private and other lands.

    The NMC has roped in a private agency to conduct the tree census, which started the work in November 2016, using global information system and global positioning system.

    “Actually, the ratio of trees in the city should be eight trees per one person. Considering the population of 18 lakh people in the city, the number of trees should be over 1 crore. The survey might look impressive, but it’s far from satisfactory,” said city environmentalist Rajesh Pandit.

    “Also, the NMC should conduct tree plantation along the rivers and nullahs in the city. This will also help rejuvenation of the river,” he added.

  • City gets road infra worth Rs 654 crore in 2 years Tushar Pawar| TNN | Updated: Apr 9, 2018, 23:45 IST
    Nashik: The city has got road infrastructure worth Rs 654 crore in the last two financial years.

    In 2015-16 itself, 37 major road works were completed at a cost of Rs 462 crore under the Simhastha Kumbh Mela, while one road work of the mela is still in progress. The municipal corporation has also completed 23 other road works worth Rs 192 crore during the period, the civic administration said in reply to questions asked by Dinkar Patil, leader of the house.

    The civic body develops city roads during the Kumbh Mela and the state government also provides funds in view of the mega religious conglomeration.

    The remaining road work under the Kumbh Mela is of the inner ring road stretch from Lekhanagar to Canal Road. Around 90% of the work has been completed, civic officials said.

    Apart from this, resurfacing of road in Nashik East and Nashik Road divisions are also in progress.


  • Don’t levy tax on agri land, mayor urges civic chief Tushar Pawar| TNN | Apr 9, 2018, 23:43 IST
    . Nashik: Mayor Ranjana Bhansi on Monday requested municipal commissioner Tukaram Mundhe not to levy tax on agricultural land in the city considering the plight of farmers.

    Bhansi handed over a letter to Mundhe, asking him not to take any decision on the issue without approval from the general body.

    Mayor’s action follows the civic administration’s decision to levy higher tax on new properties, along with agricultural land.

    On April 1, the administration had issued a public notice announcing levy of tax on new residential properties by almost five times, along with the land around the structures.

    “The state government has right to levy tax on land, buildings and properties. The government has given the rights to the civic body to levy tax on land and properties. Accordingly, the NMC is revising the tax rates for 2018-19 on new properties, extended structures and land,” states the public notice released by the NMC.

    New properties, extended structures in properties and reconstruction of old properties have come under the new tax net. Parking space, swimming pool, and open to sky properties are also taxable. Vacant plots have also been brought under the tax net. Besides the structure, the remaining land of building or bungalow has also been brought under tax net.

    Every land within the limit of the NMC has come under tax. Accordingly, farmers will have to pay tax on their agricultural land.

    “As per the advertisements in local newspapers, the tax rates for new properties, extended constructions, change in use, tenant and land have been revised for 2018-19. There was no tax on agricultural land so far. Farmers are already in trouble due to effects of climate change on agricultural production. At this juncture, no tax be levied on farmers,” Bhansi says in her letter.

  • Online 7/12 for 300 talukas from May 1: Maharashtra Revenue Minister This will ensure farmers don’t have to make rounds of the local revenue office before they get hold of such documentsAbhilash Botekar | TNN | April 12, 2018, 16:00 IST

    NASHIK: Farmers from 300 talukas across the state can get their digitally signed record of rights, also known as 7/12 extracts, online from May 1.

    This will ensure farmers don’t have to make rounds of the local revenue office before they get hold of such documents.

    State revenue minister Chandrakant Patil said, “We have almost completed the entire process to ensure farmers receive electronic record of rights in 300 talukas. By May 1, farmers in these talukas will have access to digitally signed and valid 7/12 extracts.”

    The minster was on a tour of Nashik city, when he conducted a meeting with revenue and land record officers.

    There are a total of 365 talukas in the state. In Nashik 12 talukas out of 15 will be ready to serve farmers e-7/12 extract from May 1.

    The applicant can file a request for the record from their home, an internet café, or seek the help of MahaOnline centres to complete the process and receive the certificate.

    The minster also pointed out that the state government had moved Supreme Court on the issue of promotion of officers belonging to reserved categories.

    “The Bombay High Court had ordered that no promotion be granted to government officers belonging to reserved categories based on caste. Promotion must be on the basis of merit. The state government has challenged the high court’s order in the apex court. At present, promotion of officers who are not from any reserved category will be carried out,” Patil said.

    The minister also spoke on the government’s plan to do away with archaic laws to make government’s activities seem pro-people.

    “In case of ready reckoner rates, the governing laws limited the government’s role only to provide suggestion on the rates of land to the Inspectorate General of Stamps and Registration (IGR). We amended the law asking IGR to accept the government’s suggestion. This led to ready reckoner rate being unchanged whereas, the rate was supposed to increase by seven percent. The state government suffered a loss of revenue of Rs 450 crore,” the minister claimed.

    He added that if the rates were increased, the rise would have affected the real estatemarket.

    The minster also said that he plans to conduct district-wise meeting of revenue officersfrom all the districts— starting with Nashik.

    Patil said, “The first round of such meetings will be held at divisional headquarters. Thereafter, meeting will be held at other district headquarters with an aim to get first hand information about the developments being carried out and what more is needed. In Nashik we tried to understand what the city and the district needs. The provision of funds and releasing them will be based on these inputs.”


  • 90,000 smart streetlights to adorn Nashik roads soon Tushar Pawar| TNN | Updated: Apr 12, 2018, 15:22 IST
    The city roads will soon adorn a new look with over 90,000 smart streetlights to be regulated from a control room that will be set up at Panchavati divisional office of the civic body.

    Once the traffic subsides at night, the brightness of these lights will be reduced enabling the Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC) to save energy and the tariff it pays to Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (MSEDCL).

    The entire project would be implemented by a private agency under the public-private partnership (PPP) model.

    Nashik Municipal Smart City Development Corporation Limited (NMSCDCL), the agency responsible for implementing the smart light project, has already floated a tender. The last date for filing the bid is April 24. The process is likely to be completed by June end. The project will become operational within a year of filing a tender.

    Chairman of NMSCDCL Sitaram Kunte reviewed the ground work of the project at the smart city meeting on Wednesday.

    “A command control centre will be set up at Panchavati divisional office to monitor smart lights across the city. The centre will monitor the duration for which the lights are on, switching the lights as per the guidelines defined by the National Lighting Code,” said sources close to NMC.

    Smart bulbs with brightness ranging from 7 to 30 lux will be installed depending on the width of the roads.

    “Generally the time from 7pm to 10pm is the peak period for vehicular traffic. Thereafter, the movement of vehicles subsides. The control room will reduce the brightness of the smart lights after 10pm. However, we will ensure the roads are well illuminated for the convenience of motorists and pedestrians,” said NMC officials.

    Besides completing the work of installing the street lights within a year of receiving the contract, the selected agency will look after the maintenance for 10 years.

    Currently, NMC spends Rs 2.5 crore on an average each month on electricity bills. With the energy efficient smart streetlighs in place, the electricity bills are expected to reduce by around 60%.

    The agency will be allowed to advertise on the electric poles, the revenue of which will be shared between the agency and the civic body.


  • No progress in un-widened stretch of Pune highway Santosh Sonawane| TNN | Apr 14, 2018, 11:47 IST

    NASHIK: Officials of the national highways division of the state public works department(PWD) are awaiting a report that would be filed by the National Environment Research Institute (NERI) with respect to removing the trees along the stretch between Sinnar Phata and Darna river of the Nashik Pune highway, which is left un-widened due to the presence of trees.

    On a petition filed by certain tree activists, the Bombay High Court has instructed NERI to give its opinion on hacking the trees. On the submission of the report, the HC is likely to give its judgement if the trees can be hacked for the road widening project.

    The national highways division of the state PWD has awarded the contract to a company to widen the road from Sinnar Phata to Sinnar, a stretch of approximately 25 kms.

    While the construction company has finished all the construction work, the 2.5 kms stretch from Sinnar Phata to Darna river is still pending.

    While the new widened highway is 22 meters long, apart from the service roads, the un-widened stretch of 2.5 kms is just 7 meters wide. The narrow width of the un-widened road creates a bottle-neck, on the undone road which not only leads to traffic jams but also petty accidents. On this backdrop, highway officials are hoping that NERI comes out with its report at the earliest so that the work on the unconstructed road can be taken up.
    Nashik Pune highway witnesses a huge traffic flow throughout the day. Many people also travel between Nashik Road and Sinnar for work. People who work and stay in Sinnar send their children to schools in Nashik city. The un-widened road has been posing a problem to everyone.


  • Nashik civic body to auction properties of 50 major tax defaulters The civic administration had set a property tax collection target of Rs 113 crore for 2017-2018, but it could collect only Rs 90 crore. Hence, the NMC decided to take action against defaultersTushar Pawar | TNN | April 16, 2018, 13:00 IST

    NASHIK: The civic body has decided to auction the confiscated properties 50 big propertytax defaulters at Dadasaheb Gaikwad auditorium on April 25.

    In a public notice issued on Sunday, the Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC) said the pending dues amount to Rs 3.75 crore.

    The civic administration had set a property tax collection target of Rs 113 crore for 2017-2018, but it could collect only Rs 90 crore. Hence, the NMC decided to take action against defaulters.

    “In the first phase, we are taking action against the top 50 defaulters whose dues amount to Rs 3.75 crore. We will auction their properties next week and will take action against the remaining tax defaulters thereafter,” NMC sources said.

    The 50 defaulters include industrial and commercial establishments. The five top defaulters alone have total dues of Rs 1.58 crore. The 50 defaulters have dues from Rs 2.44 lakh to Rs 79.97 lakh.

    The property tax department of the NMC has identified 490 property tax defaulters and notices of confiscation of their properties with ultimatum of 21 days have been served on them.

    The Congress party’s Nashik office has pending tax dues of Rs 26 lakh. The NMC has served confiscation notice on the office with a deadline of 21 days, which is about to end. However, the Congress officials urged the NMC for one more week to pay the tax. Hence, the NMC did not include the party’s office in the first list of tax defaulters for auctioning of properties.

    On Friday, municipal commissioner Tukaram Mundhe had hinted at releasing a list of property tax defaulters. “Our property tax collection has definitely increased during the last fiscal due to the NMC taking action against defaulters. Our target is to recover 100% property tax,” Mundhe had said.


  • 850 villages likely to face water shortage Abhilash Botekar| TNN | Updated: Apr 15, 2018, 23:56 IST

    Nashik: As many as 866 villages in Nashik division are likely to face water shortage this summer given the depletion of water levels, the Groundwater Surveys and Development Agency (GSDA) has said.

    The division consists of Nashik, Dhule, Ahmednagar, Jalgaon and Nandurbar districts.

    In Jalgaon, 277 villages are likely to face water shortage during the peak summer as all of its 15 talukas had received deficit rainfall last monsoon and the situation remains grim as temperature has reached 41 degrees celsius and is set to rise further.

    In Nashik district, 235 are likely to face water scarcity this summer. Except Deola, Sinnar, Niphad and Peth talukas, water levels in all other talukas have declined one metre or more compared to average levels.

    The situation in Baglan, Kalwan and Malegaon talukas is worse as water levels have depleted by more than 3 metre. In Baglan, water levels have declined at 69 villages, while in Kalwan taluka 34 villages have witnessed a fall in water levels.

    The situation in Ahmednagar district that falls in rain shadow region is, however, better.

    Water levels in only 29 villages have fallen below average in the past five years. It has also received better rainfall last year which has helped boost availability of water.

    Senior officials from the Nashik division said focus was laid on completing the Jalyukta Shivar and desilting works at the earliest. “The ‘gaal mukta dharan (silt-free water reservoirs) and ‘gaal yukta shivar’ (farms with silt) were special campaigns taken up by the government across the state. We are also stressing on completion of these projects in the reservoirs across the division. Nashik district has done good in Jalyukta Shivar works and the same work formula will be stressed across the division,” an official said.

  • Opposition to tax on agricultural land snowballs Tushar Pawar| TNN | Updated: Apr 17, 2018, 14:12 IST
    NASHIK: As the opposition to the decision of the Nashik Municipal Corporation to levy property tax on agricultural land falling under the yellow zone has been mounting, mayor Ranjana Bhansi has called a general body meeting on April 23 to discuss the issue.

    Bhansi said the civic body’s move would accentuate the woes of farmers involved in cultivation in the yellow zone of the city -- the residential areas.

    Meanwhile, the MNS and AAP staged separate agitations in front of the NMCheadquarters on Monday, registering their opposition to the civic body’s decisions.

    The AAP members protested against the substantial hike in various kinds of property taxes and demanded a roll back. They also expressed their ire about the move to levy property tax on agricultural land.

    The MNS protested against levying of property tax on playgrounds of schools and colleges. The party workers conducted their agitation in a novel way, by playing cricket in front of the NMC headquarters.

    Bhansi told reporters, “We are in support of farmers and we oppose any move to levy of property tax on agricultural land. The municipal commissioner has exempted agricultural land in green zone only. Our demand is that agricultural land, be it in green zone or yellow zone, should be exempted in a blanket manner.”

    She said a delegation of elected representatives of the civic body will meet district guardian minister Girish Mahajan and also chief minister Devendra Fadnavis on the issue.

    The administration has increased tax on existing properties by 18% from the current fiscal, while property tax on new residential buildings has been increased from Rs 50 paise per sq.ft. to Rs 2 per sq.ft. Moreover, for the first time, NMC has levied tax on open plot and land in the side margins of buildings. It has also brought agricultural land in yellow zone under the tax net.

    Following protest by farmers, municipal commissioner Tukaram Mundhe on Friday exempted agricultural land that falls in green zones.

    Property tax on land had been increased from 3 paise per sq.ft. to 40 paise per sq.ft, but Mundhe has reduced it to 20 paise per sq.ft.

    Meanwhile, farmers held meetings at Adagaon and Makhmalabad on Sunday, opposing the move of the civic administration. They have decided to hold demonstrations at the NMC headquarters on April 23, the day the NMC general body meeting on the issue takes place.


  • Hoardings removed, focus now on concrete foundation Sumita Sarkar| TNN | Apr 18, 2018, 00:01 IST
    Nashik: Acting upon the order of the high court, the civic administration has removed hoardings from Nandini river but is yet to remove the concrete foundation on the river bed. Petitioner Rajesh Pandit has demanded these structures be removed from the blue line at the earliest.

    Pandit had filed a public interest litigation in which he held all the government offices responsible for river pollution. Environment activists in the city have been demanding that besides making the river and its tributaries pollution-free, concrete should also be removed from the river bed and the blue line.

    Recently, Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC) removed all the hoardings and frame holdings on Nandini river but did not remove the concrete structures on the riverbed that held the hoardings.

    “As per the order of the high court on March 30, 2017 and the appeal in my letter (April 9) on removal of unauthorised constructions on the blue line, it has been understood that NMC has removed some unauthorised constructions like hoardings. However, when we visited the spot we saw the hoardings and structures for setting these were removed. The foundation where these were set up had not been removed,” said Pandit.

    He said the foundations were constructed with cement and concrete by digging 10-15 feet deep into the riverbed/blue line. “I have written to the district collector and will send copies to all members of the committee formed by the court to tackle river pollution. These include the municipal commissioner, the revenue commissioner and other members. As per NEERI’s suggestion, the district administration has mentioned in the report that it would not use cement and concrete in the river bed or on the blue line,” added Pandit.

    In the letter, Pandit appealed to the district collector to direct the civic administration and the water resources department to remove the concrete foundation so that the gene pools in the riverbed or blue line is rejuvenated and the order of the high court and the suggestion of NEERI is followed in the true sense. “All the unauthorised concrete structures on the river bed/blue line and its tributaries have to be removed,” said Pandit.

  • NMC firm on auctioning off defaulters’ properties Sumita Sarkar| TNN | Apr 18, 2018, 23:51 IST
    Nashik: With the civic body deciding to auction the properties of 50 top tax defaulters on April 25, the owners of such properties have started appealing to the officials to halt the auction and give them more time to clear the dues.

    Some have asked to waive off the penalty.

    On March 15, the Nashik Municipal Corporation (NMC) had issued notices to 90,000 property owners for various issues relating to property tax.

    The civic body can auction off the properties after 21 days of issuing the notices.

    So, the NMC has issued a public notice, announcing auctioning of the properties on April 25 at 4pm.

    “After we declared the date of auction, many property owners started approaching us asking for more time to pay the dues. Some have requested us to waive off the penalty,” a senior official said.

    “We made it very clear to the property owners that the penalty cannot be waived off. They have not paid tax for years and hence the penalty has been slapped. We have given them enough time; they should have made the payment. Some property owners made excuses like they were not using the entire property and there were others who were also using it. We asked them to sort out the differences among themselves. We had given notices to them since the properties belong to them,” said the official.

    In some cases, there were disputes between the owner and the tenant due to which the dues could not be paid.

    The municipal body said the onus to resolve such issues and pay the dues is on the owner, the official added.

    He said if the defaulters paid the dues even on the day of auction, their properties would not be put up for auctioning.

    In the auction notice, the NMC has mentioned that no pawning for the property would be entertained as it is illegal.

    The list of the 50 properties has been uploaded on the NMC’s official website.


  • Encroachments demolished in Nashik West division Sumita Sarkar| TNN | Apr 21, 2018, 20:16 IST
    NASHIK: Carrying out with its anti-encroachment drive, Nashik Municipal Corporation demolished permanent structures in the plush New Pandit Colony on Friday.

    The squad of the NMC’s encroachment department along with staff of other departments and dedicated police for the drive demolished unauthorized constructions in New Pandit Colony off Gangapur Road and in PNT Colony.

    In the D wing of Thakker Treasure, a resident Lokesh Maheshwari had enclosed his 2.50 by 2.00 metre terrace with a tin shed that was demolished by the squad. In PNT Colony, the squad demolished a brick construction on the side margin by Shree Khivansara. The NMC squad demolished some part of it while some part was demolished by the owner. “All unauthorised constructions, constructions on parking spaces, side margins, roads etc will be demolished in stricter actions by NMC in future. Action will also be taken against vegetable and fruit vendors, kiosk owners, hawkers, and offences will be registered against them in the respective police stations,” said an NMC official.
    He appealed to people to remove/demolish all illegal constructions on their own and cooperate with the NMC or else the latter will have to demolish these and also charge for the expenses from the owner.