Nice got Rs 56 crore stamp duty waiver: Activist

Nice got Rs 56 crore stamp duty waiver: Activist

The State government has cheated the exchequer of Rs 56 crore by giving stamp duty exemption to Nandi Infrastructure Corridor Enterprise (NICE), according to activist T J Abraham.

During his fourth-day preliminary submission in the Special Lokayukta Court on Saturday, Abraham claimed that during the tenure of S M Krishna as the chief minister, the then additional chief secretary, Public Works Department, stated that if NICE were to be exempted from payment of stamp duty to the tune of Rs 56 crore on the first sale of land to the company for townships,  the government would stand to benefit subsequently by way of the second sale of land in the townships.

“This was a fraudulent and mischievous excuse, used deliberately to cause a specific loss of Rs 56 crore to the State exchequer. No builder or land developer has been extended or given this kind of a benefit in the State till date, for the development of a township for private financial aggrandisement,” Abraham alleged.

Recommendation

The Revenue Department on the recommendation of Public Works Department prepared a Cabinet note and got approval for 100 per cent exemption of stamp duty and registration charges on 5,850 acres of saleable land earmarked for five townships.

The waiver of registration charges has also never been done earlier.

Ashok Kheny sought acquisition and stamp duty exemption for 14,337 acres of private land contrary to the Cabinet decision.

Instead of raising objections, Anees Siraj, the then Special Deputy Commissioner for Bangalore-Mysore Infrastructure Corridor Project (BMICP) recommended the same and issued an order on September 21, 2002.  The matter has been adjourned to July 30.

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