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CAG Raps Liquor Lapses

Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India on State’s revenue sector reveals ‘deficiencies’ in regulation of Mohua flower utilization and production of Out Still(OS) liquor.The CAG Reports for 2017-18 was tabled in the Odisha Legislative Assembly by Finance Minister Niranjan Pujari. 

CAG has recommended strengthening the enforcement and internal control mechanism and amending rules for imposition of specific penalty amount for each violation. 

The Audit Report also recommended to fix the MRP of OS liquor sold in pouches for regulation of price, take required steps to ensure payment of minimum sale price to the vendors as notified by the Government and conduct review of storage license fee commensurate with storage capacity of the licensees. On the Stamp Duty and Registration Fee, the CAG Report mentioned that the Stamp Duty and Registration Fee of Rs 115.69 lakh was short realized on registration of agreement to sale, certificate of sale and conveyance deeds. On the Motor Vehicle Tax, it said that the motor vehicle tax and additional tax of Rs 26.74 crore and penalty of Rs 53.48 crore was not realized from registered owners of 27,413 goods carriages and contract carriages.  

Further Rs 4.06 crore and penalty of Rs. 8.12 crore was not realized from registered owners of 13,520 tractor trailer combinations, private service vehicles and educational institution buses, it said. The permit database of State Transport Authority was not interlinked with Regional Transport authorities, which resulted in short realization of tax, it said.” 

The percentage of revenue raised by the State Government to total revenue of the State increased from 41.58 per cent in 2016-17 to 42.60 per cent in 2017-18, the report of the for the year ended March 31, 2018 said on Tuesday.  According to the Report the remaining 57.40 per cent was from the Union Government. 

On the tax revenue, the Report mentioned that tax revenue accounted for was 32.77 per cent (Rs 27,913.80 crore) of the total revenue (Rs 85, 173.79 crore) of the State for the year 2017-18 over the previous year. “The revenue under the heads – State Excise, Land Revenue and Taxes on Vehicles had increased,” it said. 

According to the report, the reduction in tax revenue under OVAT and ET was due to implementation of GST, as Goods and Services Tax (GST) was implemented from July 1, 2017. On the non-tax revenue, the CAG report mentioned that the non-tax revenue increased by 4.04 per cent during the year 2017-18 over the previous year. “The increase was mainly due to rise in mining receipts (24.47 per cent).

This was due to increase in collection of royalty on Iron and Chromite ore as compared to 2016-17,” it added. Presenting the analysis of arrears of revenue, the CAG audit mentioned that the arrears of revenue was Rs 12,412.64 crore as on 31 March 2018 from some principal heads of revenue like OVAT, Entry Tax (ET) and Mining receipts. Out of this, Rs 4,575.34 crore was outstanding for more than five years. 

The Report further said that “The Finance Department may analyze case-wise details in respect of 41,159 dealers who did not migrate to GST to ensure that no eligible tax payers are left out of GST.