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14K CR Locked In Litigation

Bhubaneswar: Revenue arrears of the State Government worth Rs 14,440.58 crore are locked up in different courts.

This was informed by Finance Minister Niranjan Pujari in a written reply in the State Legislative Assembly on Monday.

Mr.Pujari said the State Government is yet to collect arrear revenue of Rs 23,540.51 crore till March 20222, of which revenue worth Rs 14,440.58 crore has not been realised due to cases in different courts.

While cases related to revenue arrears worth Rs 614.90 crore are pending in the Supreme Court, arrear cases of Rs 8678.44 crore and Rs 5147.23 crore are to be decided by the Orissa High Court and other courts, respectively.

The total outstanding commercial tax is Rs 11,592.83 crore, electricity duty is Rs 4187.61 crore, stamp duty is Rs 217.57 crore, agriculture water rate—Rs 22.57 crore, MV tax—Rs 311.75 crore, industrial water rate—Rs 4914.56 crore and forest development tax—Rs 131.39 crore.

The cases of revenue arrears are in different categories- commercial tax (Rs 6779.68 crore), electricity duty (Rs 1,534.90 crore), mining royalty (Rs 2070.03 crore), excise duty (Rs 92.20 crore), MV tax (Rs 81.12 crore), industrial water rate (Rs 3,830.36 crore) and forest development tax (Rs 52.29 crore).

For speedy trial of pending revenue arrear cases, the Government has been appointing advocate general, public prosecutor, assistant public prosecutors and standing counsel. If needed, for important cases, the Government also hires special counsel, he said.

For collection of the revenue dues, the State Government has taken some important measures including appointment of special counsel, high-level review meeting by Chief Secretary, out-of-court one time settlement, etc.

The appellate authorities have been asked to complete the pending commercial tax related cases within a specified timeline, he added.

Team Finance led by Vishal Dev, Principal Secretary Finance has been consistently monitoring revenue collection with a specific focus on arrear revenue.

And due to sustained efforts collection of both tax and non-tax revenue is on rise and it is expected that State’s own revenues are to register moderate growth in 2022-23.

Now thrust is on collection of arrear revenue, which will help out the State in a big way, officials say.