Asking farmers to pay waived off water taxes since 2015 injustice: Tarigami

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Demands immediate revocation of order issued by Chief Engineer

SRINAGAR: Terming the decision of J&K government to annul the March 2015 announcement of then Finance Minister of waiving off water tax on agricultural land as arbitrary and against the interests of farmers, CPI (M) leader Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami Wednesday demanded the immediate revocation of the order issued by Chief Engineer Irrigation and Flood Control.

“In the said order issued on 11 August 2020, the Chief Engineer has directed the Numberdars to collect water taxes from the farmers from March 2015 onwards failing which they have been warned of action under Jammu and Kashmir Water Resources Regulation and Management Act-2010,” Tarigami said in a statement issued to the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO).

He said the decision to waive off water tax from the farmers was taken by then state government and announced in the Assembly. How can a Chief Engineer issue an order to overturn the decision of an elected government now?, Tarigami questioned.

“Also some of the agricultural land on which the Chief Engineer has passed directions to collect water tax has been changed for other purposes since then. It is sheer injustice with the farmers to force them to pay now when they had been given some relief by then government,” he said while demanding immediate revocation of the order issued by the Chief Engineer.

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