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By Staff Reporter

The Madhya Pradesh High Court at Indore has made a significant ruling regarding a case involving the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) and the registration of a project. The court has set aside an order passed by RERA that dismissed an application under Section 4 of the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016, citing improper stamping. The single judge bench, presided over by Justice Vivek Rusia, emphasized that RERA should have referred the document for impounding instead of outright dismissing the registration application.

The case was filed by Accrual Realities, a real estate company that had entered into a joint venture agreement named “24 Carat Extn.” with the landowners through a development agreement. After completing all necessary formalities, Accrual Realities submitted an application for the registration of the project under Section 4 of the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016. However, RERA rejected the application on April 19, 2022, stating that the agreement from February 11, 2021, was not properly stamped. According to RERA, stamp duty amounting to Rs. 22,40,333/- was due, but Accrual Realities had only paid Rs. 12,45,630/- as stamp duty.

Aggrieved by RERA’s order, Accrual Realities filed a petition before the Madhya Pradesh High Court. In response, the State of Madhya Pradesh and the Inspector General of the Department of Stamps and Registration argued that if any authority determines that an instrument is not properly stamped, they have the power to impound it under the Indian Stamps Act.

The High Court has set aside RERA’s order from April 19, 2022, and remanded the matter back to RERA for a fresh decision on the application. The court directed RERA to allow the petitioners an opportunity to be heard on the issue of stamp duty payment. If necessary, RERA should obtain any required reports from the Registrar or Sub Registrar of Stamps. In case any deficiency in stamp duty is found, the petitioner should be given an opportunity to pay the deficit amount. The court instructed that the entire process should be completed within 45 days from the date of the ruling.

This ruling by the Madhya Pradesh High Court highlights the importance of proper stamping in project registrations and emphasizes the role of authorities in following the procedures outlined in the Indian Stamps Act. The decision ensures that Accrual Realities will have a fresh opportunity to present their case and address any issues related to stamp duty payment in accordance with the law.

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