GUWAHATI: Following the plea of Barpeta Xattra to the Chief Minister for exemption from land revenue, the State government is examining the possibility of exempting all the xattras. The Revenue and Disaster Management department has already directed the Deputy Commissioners to find out the details of land revenue the respective xattras pay annually, and also their outstanding dues.
According to sources, there are about 99,000 bighas of land under the xattras across the State.
Talking to The Sentinel, Burha Xattriya of Barpeta Xattra Basistha Deva Sarma said, “We have been regularly paying the khajana. However with the hike in land revenue, it has become a burden on us. The land revenue has now reached almost one lakh of rupees. Hence, we’ve made the plea. We’re hopeful that the State government will consider our request.”
He further said, “We have to pay land revenue for the various public utility services that are carried out in our xattra land like government roads, public schools, playgrounds and also other organizations that have their offices on our xattra land.”
As per the present rules, the areas of the main xattras are tax free. However, the plots where the ‘bhakats’ or the priests reside fall within the taxable purview, and 50 per cent of the assessed tax is charged for such areas of the xattras.