Srinagar, December 12, (Scoop News)- Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah Thursday highlighted the importance of upgrading the financial status of the State to generate adequate resources for undertaking various development projects of the State interest and completing them in a time bound manner from the State’s own generated funds.
The Chief Minister said that the gap between the resources and expenditure puts greater hurdle to take up the development projects in hand and complete them in a fixed time frame. He said the funds received by the Centre Government are earmarked for the identified schemes and untied funds are of meagre quantity as such not available to cater to the particular needs of people in a particular area.
The Chief Minister said while the State is thankful for the financial assistance provided by the Union Government for the development purpose, yet there is need that the State catapults its own resource generation to give fillip to the developmental activities. He expressed the hope that State Finance Minister, Abdul Rahim Rather who is also the Chairman of the Empowered Committee of State Finance Ministers of India will use his office to get additional share of taxes from the Centre Government to the State.
The Chief Minister this morning inaugurated the building complex of Excise and Commercial Taxes (ECT) at Solina here constructed at a cost of over Rs. 34.50 crores. The Excise and Commercial Taxation complex is having five floors housing the Departments of Excise, Commercial Taxes and Passenger Taxes. The complex has been constructed by Jammu and Kashmir Projects Construction Corporation (JKPCC).
The Chief Minister mentioned the completion and operationalization of Toll Plaza at Lakhenpur and said that it has provided greater facilities to the traders in the transaction of their business and importing goods in a hassle-free atmosphere. It has also helped to check the leakages and upgrade and maintain tax collections.
The Chief Minister expressed the hope that the building complex will be the reflection of stupendous growth towards revenue generation in Jammu and Kashmir, and act as a centre of fair, transparent and efficient management of excise and taxation affairs besides smoothening the process of payment of taxes for the people.
The Finance Department has a plan to construct the 2nd Phase of Excise and Taxation Complex on the adjacent land to house Sales Tax Tribunal and Commissioner of Stamps which have presently accommodated in the main complex.
Minister for Finance, Abdul Rahim Rather and Principal Secretary Finance, B. B. Vyas were present on the occasion. The Chief Minister inspected various floors and interacted with the officials in different units functioning in the complex.
The office complex which the Hon’ble Chief Minister inaugurated today is having all the facilities which are required for better and conducive atmosphere. The care has been taken to make every facility available to the tax payer. Comfortable waiting rooms with best available furniture are available at each floor. Every block has at least four wash rooms and entire complex with 22 bath rooms besides 180 spacious rooms for the officials.
The building is centrally heated with mechanical installations and modern boiler house. Care has been taken that sufficient quantity of water is stored. Hence 24 synthetic plastic tanks with 2000 litres capacity each have been installed.
The inflow of motor vehicle into the complex is very high. Hence, apart from over ground parking facility, the building is provided with underground parking facility as well. The building has well-furnished auditorium, two meetings halls, a Central library and a Computer Centre. Besides, bar association has been provided well-furnished office in the building. Canteen facility is also available in the Complex.
The building has been conceived with an idea to provide all necessary facility to tax payers and appropriate space has been provided to the J&K Bank to establish a collection centre in the Complex.
The state-of-art data centre with three tier power backup, first of its kind in the State by any Govt. department, has been made functional at Excise and Taxation Complex Rail Head Jammu. Almost all offices of the department of Commercial Taxes department are connected to the Data Centre through powerful Commercial Taxes Wide Area Network (CTWAN) owned by the department through BSNL.
During his speech the Finance Minister dwelt in detail about the status and growth of financial position of the State and presented resume of the measures taken to bring in transparency in tax collection and rationalizing and easing the system.
He said that in the year 2006-07 revenue of Rs. 119535.00 lakhs was generated which touched the figure of Rs. 434860.00 lakhs in the year 2012-13. The number of registered dealers also grew year by year. In the year 2005-06 there were 36806 registered dealers which as on 31-03-2013 have gone upto 68952.
Rather expressed the hope that the new complex will boost the functioning of the department and help in managing tax affairs in a better atmosphere as also facilitating the tax payers in a big way