Thursday, 9 July 2015

Whether Registrar can refuse to register sale deed on the ground that challan showing deposit of stamp duty is more than one year?


Whereas there is a specific
limitation regarding usage of a stamp paper, there is no such
restriction on usage of challan and the department correctly
appreciating the statutory provisions had issued the earlier directive
dated 2.4.2012 placed at Annexure-4. The department perhaps
having realized the legal infirmity in the letter bearing Memo
no.3418 dated 11.8.2014 placed at Annexure-B to the main counter
affidavit has decided to amend the same but once this Court has
noticed the transgression by the Inspector General of Registration,
any continuance of the said letter would be prolonging an illegality
and in consequence the letter bearing Memo no.3418 dated
11.8.2014 of the Inspector General of Registration placed at
Annexure-B to the main counter affidavit, is quashed and set aside.
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE AT PATNA
Civil Writ Jurisdiction Case No.15981 of 2014
With
I.A. No.149 of 2015
With
I.A. No.3094 of 2015
Citation;AIR 2015 Patna 133
 Kumari Shivani Rai, 
Versus
 The State of Bihar 


CORAM: HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE JYOTI SARAN
Citation;AIR 2015 Patna 133
Date: 21-04-2015

Heard Mr. Bal Mukund Prasad Sinha, learned counsel
appearing on behalf of the petitioners and Mr. Lalit Kishore, learned
Principal Additional Advocate General for the State.
This writ petition filed under Article 226 of the
Constitution of India prays for a direction in the nature of mandamus
commanding the respondent authorities of the Registration
Department to register the sale-deed presented by the petitioner no.2
Patna High Court CWJC No.15981 of 2014 dt.21-04-2015
2
dated 30.5.2014, a copy of which is placed at Annexure-2 which has
been denied, inter alia, on grounds that the challan showing deposit
of stamp duty as well as registration fee is more than one year old.
Whereas the challan is dated 14.5.2013, the sale-deed was presented
for registration on 30.5.2014 i.e. more than one year later and hence
in view of the statutory provisions underlying section 50(2) of the
Indian Stamp Act, 1899 (hereinafter referred to as ‘the Act’) the
challan had lost its validity.
According to the petitioners, all necessary legal
formalities stands fulfilled by the deposit of stamp duty as well as
registration fee by way of challan and no infirmity has been found in
the valuation of the document. The petitioners relying upon
directives of the department itself dated 2.4.2012 placed at
Annexure-4 moved this Court making a submission that the
Department itself had issued an advisory clarifying the legal position
that there would be no validity period for a challan and which can be
utilized for registration of an instrument without any objection on
limitation.
A counter affidavit has been filed on behalf of the
department enclosing a letter of the Inspector General of
Registration, Bihar, Patna addressed to the Sub-Registrar, Patna
bearing memo no.3418 dated 11.8.2014 whereby a direction was
issued that the validity of challan would be only for one year and

cannot be used for registration of an instrument after expiry of one
year. According to the Inspector General of Registration the
stipulations made in the earlier guidelines of the department dated
2.4.2012 as contained in Annexure-4 was examined in the light of
the audit objection of the Accountant General and when it was
decided that such of the challans showing deposit of stamp duty and
registration fee beyond a year cannot be utilized after expiry of one
year. It was thus the stand of the respondents that since admittedly
the challan submitted by the petitioners is dated 14.5.2013 and the
sale deed was presented on 30.5.2014, after a lapse of year, it was
not fit for registration.
As apparently the directives issued by the Inspector
General of Registration bearing Memo No.3418 dated 11.8.2014
present at Annexure-B to the counter affidavit was in the teeth of the
statutory provisions underlying section 10 read with section 50(2) of
‘the Act’ inasmuch as though the statute specifically provides for a
period of validity of a stamp paper, there is no such limitation
provided as to the use of challan, that this Court desired to hear the
Principal Additional Advocate General on the issue.
The matter has thereafter been taken up today when the
learned Principal Additional Advocate General has filed a
supplementary counter affidavit on behalf of the respondents in
which it is stated that the department having realized its mistake had

decided to amend letter bearing Memo no.3418 dated 11.8.2014 of
the Inspector General of Registration and directive has been issued
to the Sub-Registrar, Patna vide letter no.1805 dated 17.4.2015
placed at Annexure-A to the supplementary counter affidavit to
register the document of the petitioners which has since been
registered. A statement was thus sought to be made by learned
Principal Additional Advocate General that in view of the statement
made in paragraph 4 of the counter affidavit and the letter dated
17.4.2015 placed at Annexure-A to the supplementary counter
affidavit resulting in the registration of the sale deed of the
petitioners, the writ petition has been rendered infructuous.
I have heard learned counsel for the parties and I have
perused the records.
Although the relief prayed for has been granted to the
petitioners but since the issue involved concerns the people at large
and would be affecting a large number of persons hence this Court
has proceeded to adjudicate on the issue despite noticing the
developments.
As I have observed at the outset, the letter bearing
Memo no.3418 dated 11.8.2014 issued by the Inspector General of
Registration is not an independent exercise of mind but a mechanical
reaction to the audit objection raised by the office of the Accountant
General. The statutory authority has not even bothered to satisfy

itself that such directives were in the teeth of the statutory provisions
governing the issue of challan as found in sections 10 and 10A of
‘the Act’ and that the provisions governing the stamp paper as found
in section 50(2) of ‘the Act’ would not ipso facto apply to a challan
in absence of any legislative intent. Whereas there is a specific
limitation regarding usage of a stamp paper, there is no such
restriction on usage of challan and the department correctly
appreciating the statutory provisions had issued the earlier directive
dated 2.4.2012 placed at Annexure-4. The department perhaps
having realized the legal infirmity in the letter bearing Memo
no.3418 dated 11.8.2014 placed at Annexure-B to the main counter
affidavit has decided to amend the same but once this Court has
noticed the transgression by the Inspector General of Registration,
any continuance of the said letter would be prolonging an illegality
and in consequence the letter bearing Memo no.3418 dated
11.8.2014 of the Inspector General of Registration placed at
Annexure-B to the main counter affidavit, is quashed and set aside.
The writ petition is allowed. The interlocutory
application stands disposed of.
(Jyoti Saran, J)
SKPathak/-
U
(AFR)

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