During the Polonnaruwa Kingdom, the principal source of kings’ revenue was land tax with tax on paddy. The tax on the use of water (diyabedum) from irrigation canals was also payable. There was a tax on external trade, on items such as Gems, Pearls, Cinnamon and Elephants.
These taxes were collected by hierarchy of officials. Village Headman was primarily entrusted with the collection of taxes due to the king from the respective village.
Taxes were paid partly in grain or other agricultural produce. The Land tax was charged at one sixth of the produce. Another notable feature in this period was a growth of market towns linked by trade routes. Toll and other levies were imposed by the State. Duties were levied on export and import of commodities.
Department of Inland Revenue, Sri Lanka,
Chittampalam A. Gardiner Mawatha, Colombo 02.
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