Home-based businesses told to get commercial leases

Commercialisation will change utility tariffs too

Our Correspondent June 02, 2019
Despite booming real estate business, they contribute peanuts in taxes. PHOTO: REUTERS/FILE

RAWALPINDI: People running commercial enterprises in residential areas of Rawalpindi Cantonment Board will have to regularise their lease at commercial rates or face cancelation of lease.

Rawalpindi Cantonment Board taking strict notice of commercial activities on residential lease plots has issued notices to the owners of all such properties to convert the residential lease plots to commercial lease plots.

RCB has warned that failure to regularise the lease from residential to commercial may lead to annulment of lease.

RCB, in a survey, has identified numerous residential plots where people are running offices, schools, beauty parlours.

The owners of such properties have been issued notices to convert their leaser lease from residential to commercial. Residential lease charges are Rs2 per square feet whereas commercial lease charges are Rs8 per square feet. The cantonment board will generate revenue worth millions of rupees from this conversion.

Besides, conversion to commercial will also change the tariff for utilities. The property owners will have to pay water, gas and electricity charges on commercial rates.

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Taking notice of all the private schools established within the limits of both Chaklala and Rawalpindi cantonment boards, the garrison authorities started identifying these buildings as commercial.

Owners of all the schools built in houses, residential areas have been issued notices to convert their properties into commercial.

There are around 2200 private schools within the limits of both check posts which are founded in residential areas the bills of which are as per the residential land after commercialization these buildings’ property tax, fee and bills will also be commercialized.

Dilapidated buildings

Rawalpindi and Chaklala cantonment boards have told owners of delipidated buildings to repair the structures or leave before rains.

Apprehensive of any old building crumbling down during heavy downpour, the cantonment boards have issued notices to owners for maintenance or eviction.

The cantonment boards in the garrison city will launch a crackdown after Eid against commercial activities in residential buildings, officials said.

Such buildings would be demolished in the first phase while there lease would be cancelled in the second phase.

The Chaklala Cantonment Board (CCB) has already issued notices to more than 50 buildings in Chaklala Scheme III area while the Rawalpindi Cantonment Board (RCB) has prepared notices against 125 residential buildings which would be issued after Eid.

The authorities have warned owners of all such rundown buildings that they would be held responsible for any mishap during monsoon rains.

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Rawalpindi Waste Management Company (RWMC) has launched a Cleanliness drive in the city which will continue till Eidul Fitr.

According to a spokesman of RWMC, special arrangements had been made to sweep surroundings of mosques and open places where Eid prayers would be offered. Sanitary workers each would remain present near every mosque or Eidgah to ensure cleanliness.

All graveyards of city would be provided special services and surroundings would be kept free from waste during these days besides sanitary workers would be deployed in parks and recreational places across the city would also ensure the waste picking.

RWMC's helpline 1139 would remain alert with all resources to address waste related complaints during Eid days, he added. 

Published in The Express Tribune, June 2nd, 2019.


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