08/19/2010 04:36 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Hindu Family Fighting $635 Tax On Religious Grounds Could Lose Their Home

A family's steadfast refusal to pay a $635.02 special assessment tax for an alley paving project because it violated their religious beliefs has run up an estimated $40,000 in outside legal bills for the city, with no apparent end in sight.

Rao and her mother fought removal of a tree in the project, saying the action ran counter to the basic precepts of their Hindu religion. Hinduism forbids the needless killing of any living thing and also requires practitioners from not participating or acquiescing in such acts, Rao said.

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