Thiruvananthapuram: In an effort to increase the revenue of the state that has been looming in financial crisis, the Kerala government increased the cess on petrol, diesel and liquor and has decided to increase the taxes on property and vehicles.
The government has imposed a social security cess of Rs 2 per litre on petrol and diesel. The government is expecting an additional revenue of Rs 750 crore to the Social Security Seed Fund due to this, Finance Minister KN Balagopal said in his budget speech.
Cess on liquor
The minister said that a social security cess will be imposed on liquor priced above Rs 500. With this, liquor prices will go up again. For Indian Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) priced between Rs 500 and 999, a cess of Rs 20 per bottle will be imposed and for IMFL priced above Rs 1,000, the social security cess will be Rs 40. Balagopal said that additional revenue of Rs 400 crore is expected through the social security cess on IMFL.
The one-time tax on newly purchased motorcycles with a purchase value of up to Rs 2 lakh has been increased by 2 per cent. The government is expecting an additional revenue of Rs 92 crore from this.
Also, the one-time tax on newly purchased cars and personal use vehicles has been increased. For cars having a purchase value of up to Rs 5 lakh, there has been a tax hike of 1 per cent. There will be a 2 per cent hike for cars with a purchase value between Rs 5 lakh and Rs 15 lakh. For cars with a purchase value of Rs 15 lakh and above, there will be a hike of 1 per cent.
This is expected to generate additional income of Rs 340 crore.
The government has also increased the one-time cess on newly registered motor vehicles. For two-wheelers, this has been increased from the current Rs 50 to Rs 100. For light motor vehicles, this is increased from Rs 100 to Rs 200 and for medium motor vehicles, it will go up from Rs 150 to Rs 300.
The one-time cess on newly registered heavy motor vehicles will be increased from Rs 250 to Rs 500.
In an effort to encourage the use of electric vehicles, the government has reduced the tax on them. The one-time tax on electric motor cabs and electric tourist motor cabs has been reduced to 5 per cent of the purchase value on par with the one-time tax on electric private vehicles.
These vehicles currently incur a one-time tax ranging from 6 per cent to 20 per cent of the purchase value.
The minister said that since the one-time tax on all types of electric vehicles is fixed at 5 per cent of the purchase value for a period of 15 years, the existing 50 per cent tax exemption for such vehicles for the first 5 years is dispensed with.
The government has increased the fair value of land by 20 per cent. Also, electricity duty has been hiked by 5 per cent.
The finance minister added that tax reforms will be implemented in local bodies in the state. The local bodies will get additional revenue of Rs 1,000 crore through this, he added. The government has increased the property tax of Local Self Government Institutions (LSGIs).
“Property tax revision has been pending in LSGIs for a long time. Government is intending to revise the property tax, application fee, scrutiny fee and permit fee for the construction of residential and non-residential buildings,” the minister said.
Balagopal added that a proper method of taxation of multiple houses under the ownership of a single individual and newly constructed houses which are not put to use will also be taken up.
The electricity duty applicable for commercial and industrial units has been increased and levied at the rate of 5 per cent. This will provide additional revenue of around Rs 200 crore to the government, the minister said.
Balagopal also said that currently, electricity duty is collected and retained by KSEBL. This process will cease by 31 October, 2023. The amount thereafter shall be payable to the government account, he said.
The court fee charges will be limited to 1 per cent of the claim amount of suit for compensation for defamation and suit for compensation for negligent and tortious act.
The minister said that the Kerala Court Fees and Suit Valuation Act, 1959 will be amended to extend the collection of 1 per cent additional court fee to more areas. According to the minister, the court fee will be introduced within the ambit of e-stamping to facilitate “ease of use” for citizens.
Additional revenue of Rs 50 crore is expected from this.