The Madras High Court on Wednesday refused to allow the plea moved by actor Rajinikanth against a property tax demand of Rs 6.5 lakh by the Greater Chennai Corporation for his Sri Raghavendra Kalyana Mandapam in Kodambakkam, Chennai.
Rajinikanth had refused to pay the tax as his marriage hall had been left vacant since March 24.
Judge Anitha Sumanth, ordering the petitioner to withdraw the plea from the High Court registry by evening, suggested the actor to approach the Corporation by sending reminders to the representation made. She observed that the petitioner should have exhausted all remedies available before approaching the court. She also warned Rajinikanth that it will impose costs for wasting the court’s time.
Through his counsel Vijayan Subramaniam, Rajinikanth had filed a writ petition against the property tax demand for the half-yearly period between April to September. The actor argued that he had been paying the property tax regularly, and had last cleared his dues on February 14.
However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, he claimed that he had not rented out his hall post March 24, which in turn did not generate any income. Rajinikanth stated that he had even refunded all advance amounts in accordance with the government’s guideline and hence, was entitled to vacancy remission on property tax.
According to the actor, Section 105 of the Chennai City Municipal Corporation Act of 1919 provides remission of tax for a property, if the said property has been vacant for over 30 days. Rajinikanth also stated that he had made a representation to the Corporation on September 23 but did not receive any reply.
Rajinikanth is currently working on director Siva’s Annaatthe, which is being bankrolled by Kalanithi Maran’s banner Sun Pictures. The film stars Nayanthara in the lead, along with Keerthy Suresh, and actors Prakash Raj, Soori, Sathish, Meena, and Kushboo. The film was supposed to hit the theatres on Pongal 2021. However, due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, the release date had to be pushed. Reports suggest that the film is expected to release in April 2021.
Update: Rajinikanth took to Twitter on Thursday to express his regret over the situation. He wrote that he could have avoided the mistake if he had appealed to the Corporation.
ராகவேந்திரா மண்டப சொத்து வரி…
நாம் மாநகராட்சியில் மேல்முறையீடு செய்திருக்க வேண்டும்.
— Rajinikanth (@rajinikanth) October 15, 2020