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Pune property registrations: In cities with sky-high land rates, real estate deals grounded

The data revealed that till November 8, 2016, 7,700 documents were registered in Maharashtra on a daily basis, on an average.

Written by Partha Sarathi Biswas | Pune |
December 9, 2016 10:10:26 am

A MONTH after demonetisation, business in the real estate sector remains far from normal, with land and property registrations showing a significant decline since notes of higher denomination were withdrawn from circulation. According to data from the office of the Inspector General of Stamp Duty and Registration (IGR), registration of new documents has dropped by 36 per cent since the scrapping of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes.

The data revealed that till November 8, 2016, 7,700 documents were registered in Maharashtra on a daily basis, on an average. Now, only 4,900 documents — pertaining to the sale deed or lease deed of land or property — are being registered on a daily basis.

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Daily stamp duty collections have also declined from Rs 58.3 crore, before November 8, to Rs 56 crore in the last one month.

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Incidentally, while the IGR’s office had reported stamp duty collection worth Rs 1,446 crore in November 2015, the collection amount for November 2016 is Rs 1,305 crore.

It is an open secret that the use of black money is rampant in land and property transactions, with both buyers and sellers preferring to settle some portion of the transaction in cash. Withdrawal of higher currency notes was expected to hit this sector, as that would effectively end such black money transactions.

Mumbai and Pune have always been considered the epicentre of real estate and land business in the state, given the skyrocketing land prices in these areas.

However, officials of IGR said the cash crunch has also affected the functioning of their office. Since day one of demonetisation, the sub-registrars’ offices had refused to deal in withdrawn notes.

“The transaction charges, per page of a sale deed being registered, is Rs 20 and normally a sale deed consists of 20 pages. All transactions in our offices take place in cash and that might also have affected the number of registrations,” said a senior official.

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