Madras High Court grants Property Tax Exemption for Community Health and Development Department Building, which provides Health Care facilities to Far-Flung Areas [Read Order]

Madras High Court - Property Tax Exemption - Community Health - Taxscan

The Madras High Court granted the Property Tax Exemption for Community Health and Development Department Building, which provides health care facilities to far-flung areas.

The petitioner, Christian Medical College Vellore Association (CMC) is an institution that was founded by Late Dr.Ida Scudder in or around late 1800. The hospital stated that it provides free treatment to 40% of its out-patients and 10% of its in-patients and the fee fixation criteria is on the basis of the economic viability of the patients and their families. There is no Government aid or grant that is extended for the hospital.

Likewise, the College, run as an unaided minority educational institution, does not collect capitation fees and is a prestigious and premier teaching institution in the Country. The fee charged in the college is stated to be subsidized and it is the income generated by the Hospital that funds the subsidized medical education that the college provides. The tuition fee charged per student per year, the affidavit states, is a sum of Rs.3,000/- for the Undergraduate course and Rs.450/- for the Postgraduate course.

The single-judge bench of Justice Anitha Sumanth ruled that the petitioner society would be eligible for property tax exemption for its Community Health and Development Department (CHAD) building, which provides health care facilities to far-flung areas, and that the Vellore Municipal Corporation was wrong in demanding tax for it.

However, the court held that the society would not be eligible for tax exemption for its college building since a 1994 amendment to the municipal law had deleted the legal provision under which buildings used for educational purposes could also seek exemption. However, after recording the submission of the society that it charges an annual tuition fee of only Rs.3,000 per student for under graduation and Rs.450 for post-graduation, the judge recommended a grant of tax exemption to service-oriented and non-profit educational institutions too.

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