Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Saturday, Aug 10, 2002
Corporate - Taxation
IPCL, panchayat lock horns over Rs 17-cr tax dues
AHMEDABAD, Aug. 9
EVEN as the Vadodara Taluka Panchayat has slapped a notice on Indian Petrochemicals Corporation Ltd (IPCL) for the recovery of tax dues to the tune of Rs 17 crore, the company has said the matter is sub judice and, therefore, it cannot discuss the issue.
The petrochemicals complex Notified Area Authority (NAA) officials, however, point out that IPCL has till date paid Rs 3.25 crore out of the total dues of over Rs 20 crore.
Talking to Business Line, officials of the quasi-judicial NAA pointed out as per a Gujarat High Court directive, one-third of the tax proceeds from 1998 was to be set apart for various development works in the nearby villages.
To that extent, the Vadodara Taluka Panchayat was entitled to a much smaller amount, they said.
The petrochemicals complex Notified Area Authority comprises some 11 villages including Koyli, Undera and Karodia in which the present petrochemicals township and the plant area of a number of companies are located. The tax dues to the authority are based on the extent of land which each of the entities has occupied.
``IPCL is the single largest company with an annual due of Rs 1.92 crore, while Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) comes second with Rs 1.07 crore. The authority's annual inflow should be around Rs 4.5 crore, but IPCL has refused to pay us our dues from the very beginning. Now, the Gujarat Government has indicated that we should take immediate action to recover the consolidated tax dues of some Rs 17 crore from IPCL. Failing this, the authority would be forced to take recourse to legal measures such as attachment,'' a senior NAA official said.
IPCL has all along claimed that there was no locus standi for NAA's claim as it had failed to deliver on any of the infrastructure facilities promised such as road, electricity and even water.
There was also an agreement between IPCL and the State Government that no money would be charged from the petrochemicals company for the drawal from the Panam reservoir, it was pointed out.
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