Stop black money scams, pay stamp duty

Doc­u­ments re­lated to prop­erty have to be stamped or you will be charged a hefty penalty

HT Estates - - NEWS - Su­nil Tyagi

Some im­por­tant in­stru­ments re­lated to im­mov­able prop­erty, such as agree­ment to sell, sale deed, lease deed, gift deed, par­ti­tion deed, to name a few, should be com­pul­so­rily stamped. In trans­ac­tions of im­mov­able prop­erty, the amount of stamp duty payable is cal­cu­lated on the mar­ket value of the prop­erty (as per the preva­lent cir­cle rates) or on the ba­sis of the con­sid­er­a­tion amount of the prop­erty set out in the doc­u­ment, which­ever amount is higher.

Cir­cle rates lay down the min­i­mum rates for val­u­a­tion of land and im­mov­able prop­erty. One of the pri­mary rea­sons be­hind state gov­ern­ments in­tro­duc­ing and pe­ri­od­i­cally re­vis­ing cir­cle rates is to curb un­der-val­u­a­tion of trans­ac­tions re­lat­ing to im­mov­able prop­erty. Un­der­val­u­a­tion of prop­erty prices in trans­ac­tions of im­mov­able prop­erty is a sig­nif­i­cant factor in cir­cu­la­tion of black money in the econ­omy. Last year, the Delhi gov­ern­ment had re­vised cir­cle rates un­der the pro­vi­sions of the In­dian Stamp Act, 1899, as ap­pli­ca­ble to Delhi and the Delhi Stamp (Preven­tion of Un­der-val­u­a­tion of In­stru­ments) Rules, 2007 (Delhi Stamp Rules).

As per the Delhi Stamp Rules, in an in­stru­ment re­lat- ing to im­mov­able prop­er­ties which is charge­able with ad val­orem stamp duty, one is re­quired to fur­nish cer­tain es­sen­tial par­tic­u­lars about the prop­erty in ques­tion, in ad­di­tion to the mar­ket value of the prop­erty. Th­ese par­tic­u­lars are taken into con­sid­er­a­tion by the reg­is­ter­ing au­thor­i­ties and help them as­sess the stamp duty charge­able on an in­stru­ment of an im­mov­able prop­erty. If the in­stru­ment in ques­tion re­lates to dif­fer­ent kinds of prop­er­ties or if it cov­ers more than one prop­erty lo­cated at dif­fer­ent places, the in­for­ma­tion re­quired and the value of each such prop­erty has to be spec­i­fied separately. In addi- tion to the de­tails in the ac­com­pa­ny­ing ta­ble, the party which presents the in­stru­ment re­lat­ing to im­mov­able prop­erty (which is charge­able to ad val­orem stamp duty) is also re­quired to sub­mit a state­ment in the pre­scribed form. Un­der the Delhi Stamp Rules, the reg­is­ter­ing of­fi­cer may also call for any ad­di­tional in­for­ma­tion on the prop­erty trans­ac­tion from the con­cerned par­ties.

The con­se­quences of non­pay­ment and in­ad­e­quate pay­ment of stamp duty are harsh and can lead to im­pound­ing of the doc­u­ment and at­tract a hefty penalty of about ten times the ap­pli­ca­ble stamp duty. Ad­e­quate stamp­ing, wher­ever re­quired, also grants le­gal doc­u­ments the sta­tus of be­ing ad­mis­si­ble as ev­i­dence in courts. Thus, ad­e­quate and timely pay­ment of stamp duty helps pro­tect the rights and in­ter­ests of the par­ties in the trans­ac­tion. The Delhi Stamp Rules go a long way to­wards curb­ing cir­cu­la­tion of black money, in­creas­ing trans­parency in trans­ac­tions of im­mov­able prop­erty and adding to the rev­enue of the state.


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