Kerela High Court how assessments have to be made in respect of building tax .

Kerala High  Court on how assessments have to be made in respect of building tax .

Title : E.K.ANIL  v. TAHASILDAR & Others.

Decided on : 19th October 2023

Case No. : WP ( C ) No.3848/2023



The writ petition has been filed by the petitioner seeking to call for the records relating to Exts.P2 to P4 and to quash the same. Kerela High Court how assessments have to be made in respect of building tax and that separate building tax assessments have to be made in the name of very same person for all the buildings constructed or repaired by him, which attract liability.

Fact of the Case

The petitioner is the owner of 17 independent buildings having separate building numbers. After completion of construction of five out of 17 buildings, assessment was completed separately in the year 2009 as per Ext.P1. Thereafter, on completion of construction of the remaining 12 independent buildings, as per Ext.P2 assessment was made reckoning the 17 buildings as a single unit. Challenging this, though the petitioner filed an appeal before the second respondent, it was dismissed by Ext.P3 order. Aggrieved by Ext.P3, the petitioner filed a revision before the respondent, which was also dismissed as per Ext.P4 proceedings. Hence, the petitioner has approached this Court challenging Exts.P2 to P4.

Court Analysis and decision

Admittedly, the case of the petitioner is that the buildings have been given separate numbers considering the same as separate buildings. The respondents have no case that the buildings are adjoining, or they have a common wall. They only say that they are functionally the same. A person may construct separate buildings in the same property, but there is no provision in the Act for clubbing together these buildings, which are otherwise separate. Though the buildings are constructed for the purpose of renting out, each building is separate and hence, can be rented out individually. The charge is on the building as such and not with reference to its owner. Therefore, the 17 buildings, which are structurally different with separate numbers, must be assessed separately. Hence, I believe the assessment as per Ext.P2 assessing the buildings as a single unit is not legally sustainable and is liable to be set aside.

Accordingly, the writ petition is disposed of as follows; a)Exts.P2 to P4 are set aside. b)The assessing authority is directed to reconsider the assessment treating all the 17 buildings as separate units, within a period of two months from the date of receipt of a certified copy of this judgment. The petitioner shall produce a certified copy of this judgment along with the writ petition before the competent authority for compliance.

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