In an effort to crack down on tax envision the Goa State and Transport department has decided to crack down on the practice of owners of luxury cars that have been registered outside the state for road tax benefits.
The department has initiated a special drive wherein a window space of 30 days is initiated to all the Goan vehicle owners to re-registration their high-end cars, which they have purchased outside the state in order to save lakhs of rupees owing to high taxation here. Also that the number of outstation vehicles plying in the state, especially high- end luxury ones purchased by Goan residents, business entrepreneurs and companies based in Goa have their vehicles registered in the Union territories’ of Pondicherry and Daman and Diu or states like Chhattisgarh, Haryana, Delhi, Jharkhand etc and have not paid their taxes to the Goa government, there was never a successful crackdown on such tax dodgers.
The Director said that as per Section 47 of the Motor Vehicle Act when a vehicle has been registered in one state and then moved to another for a period exceeding 12 months, the owner should apply to the registering authority within whose jurisdiction the vehicle has been kept new registration.
While the transport department has no official count of high-end vehicles with registration plates of Puducherry (PY), Jharkhand (JH) or Daman and Diu (DD) plying in Goa, the official has expressed difficulty, which is next to impossible, to seize and deregister the vehicles and start tax recovery proceedings against those who are operating them.
A senior transport department official said it is not an easy task to prove the ownership of Goans. There is no way to prove that a car has been plying in the state for a year unless we have confirmed data from the registering state.
However, a transport official adds on by saying that such steps may not help in recovering tax since it is a voluntary approach asking the owners to change the registration within 30 days.
There is also the practice of buying a premium car from a dealer here after which it is taken to a Union territory for registration and is eventually brought back and operated here. This is done with the connivance of car dealers, transport department sources said. Interestingly, the buyers attach a false affidavit and notarized copy of the rental agreement address given by them of a rented apartment as a proof of residence.
“All vehicle owners concerned are therefore directed to take note of the above provision and comply accordingly within a period of 30 days from the date of issue of this notice by approaching the office of the registration authority in whose jurisdiction they are residing and apply for a change in address immediately,” said the director. Also said that failure to re-register the vehicles shall result in prosecution under the provision of the MV Act, 1988. Central Motor Vehicle Rules, 1989, and Goa Motor Vehicle Taxation Act and Rules, 1974, and may further lead to criminal investigation for registering vehicles outside the state using false addresses and causing loss of revenue to the exchequer.
In 2015, the BJP coalition government headed by then Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar hiked road tax on high-end cars to increase revenue. Following the decision, several businessmen purchased and registered their cars outside Goa.