The North Delhi Municipal Corporation (MCD) is already a cash-trapped body. But according to the recent allegation made by the Aam Aadmi Party, the MCD has manufactured a new rule of tax-exemption for over 750 heritage structures just to please Union minister and BJP leader Vijay Goel.
The civic body has to bear a cost of Rs 25 crore while it already has an estimated deficit of over Rs 2,700 crore for this financial year.
According to the allegations, the heritage conservation goals have been changed for all the heritage buildings because one of them includes a haveli in Old Delhi — 2293, Gali Anarwali, Dharampura — which is owned by Siddhant Goel, son of Union Youth Affairs and Sports minister Vijay Goel.
The new rule comes just 10 days after a tax benefit was sought for the haveli.
The MCD has said that the action has not been taken to favour any person but to motivate owners of the heritages to restore the creaky buildings and use them for commercial purposes.
However, Mail Today has a copy of a retracted proposal from the agency to offer the privilege to the haveli, which is in the names of Goel’s family. “On August 17, a plan was tabled before the standing committee of north corporation, which was to exempt the building situated at 2293, Gali Guliyan, Dharampura from paying conversion and parking charges,” said a senior official.
The North Delhi area houses several old mansions which are now decaying and are in need to repair.
The standing committee returned the proposal, stating that tax benefits cannot be awarded to just one property.
The document says the municipal corporation sought suggestions from within and from other agencies including the Heritage Conservation Committee (HCC) and DDA on whether the building, now restored and used as a destination for luxury dining and accommodation, could be offered tax incentives. It has 13 rooms, one spa and an art gallery.
After MCD sent its revised proposal of incorporating all 750 heritage buildings, Vijay Goel mentioned the step to be a commendable job.