No Stamp Duty for Security in Contract: Allahabad HC

Recently the Allahabad High Court has shown its displeasure to the fact that, despite the Judgment of the Court in 2005, the Authorities are not following the same.

A tender was invited by the P.W.D to repair different roads in District Mathura. The tender of the Petitioner was accepted. The Develoment Authority issued a letter of acceptance with a clause that total security, along with stamp duty, should be deposited within ten days. The Petitioner wrote to the respondents that he is supposed to pay stamp duty as per Article 57 (b) Schedule 1 B of the Stamp Act and for a period of eight months, no work order was passed. Feeling Aggrieved the Petitioner, filed a Writ Petition before the High Court.

A Single Judge Bench of Justice (Dr.) Kaushal Jayendra Thaker, took a serious view of the matter and observed that “this issue had arisen before this Court before one and a half decades but it appears that the authorities concerned have not shown that the said decision is binding on them as a similar issue came before this Court before three years and the judgment was struck down as it was beyond the jurisdiction of the authorities to demand the stamp duty beyond Article 57 (b) Schedule 1 B of the Stamp Act.”

The Court relied upon the decisions of Allahabad High Court passed by the Division Bench way back in the year 2005 in the case of M/s Strong Construction vs State of U.P. and others (Civil Misc. Writ Petition No.35096 of 2004) decided on 22.3.2005 and the recent oral order of Allahabad High Court Court in Writ C No.52385 of 2015 (M/s Kishan Traders vs State of U.P. and 2 others) dated 18.7.2017.

Considering above the Court allowed the Writ Petition, and quashed the order demanding stamp duty. The Cout directed that the Petitioner would be liable to pay the stamp duty as per Article 57 (b) Schedule 1 B of the Stamp Act.

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