Franking machines to help mitigate stamp paper woes

In an express effort to mitigate the citizen’s problem of procuring stamp papers, especially of those of smaller denominations, as also ease their woes of having to queue up at the banks for long hours to buy them, the State government has found a novel way to address it.

The State government, through the Department of Inspector General of Registration & Commissioner of Stamps in Karnataka, has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), on public-private-partnership basis, with the New Delhi-based Pitney Bowes India Private Limited for installation of  hi-tech electronic franking machines across the State.

Official sources told Deccan Herald that these high-end, highly versatile tamper-proof B-700 franking machines embedded with non-predictable secured encryption code, produce thermal wax transfer indelible impression on stamp duty certificate. These machines, they said, hardly take a minute to making the impressions on the white-paper and can service as many as 20 at a time.

The service providers working with the machines will be charging the customers Rs 5 per impression upto Rs 500 stamp paper, sources added. Currently, sources said, 16 such machines have been installed in City at K R Puram, Banaswadi, Hebbal, Malleswaram, Nagarbhavi, Peenya, Yelahanka, Kengeri, Banashankari, Bommanahalli, Koramangala, Jayanagar, Rajajinagar, Gandhinagar, Shivajinagar & Varathur.
More installations

By Monday, they added, these will machines be installed across the State at 25 centres including Mysore, Mangalore, Hubli, Dharwad, Belgaum, Davangere, Shimoga, Bellary and Gulbarga, stating the machines despatched from Delhi have already arrived for despatch.

Meanwhile, sources said, the postal department, Industrial Development Bank of India Limited and Corporation Bank have now consented for setting up more authorised stamping centres (ASC) to offer e-stamping services in the State.
Further, bowing to the demands of post offices and banks for additional service charge for issual of stamp papers, the State government is set to clear the deck for it shortly.

MoU with SHCIL

Sources said the State finance department has already approved the proposal to let banks and post offices levy additional service charge.  As per the Cabinet Note prepared these service providers can charge additional Rs 10 for stamp papers upto Rs 100 and Rs 15 for denominations of Rs 101 upto Rs 10,000. The service providers, who receive 15 paise per certificate, had petitioned for additional Rs 12 service charge for upto Rs 5,000 stamp certificates to meet various overhead expenditures like internet facility, rentals and manpower, sources observed.

Further,  the State department will also enter into  Memorandum of Understanding with Stock Holding Corporation of India Limited (SHCIL) to take e-stamping throughout Karnataka which has been long pending. Incidentally, Stock Holding Corporation of India Limited officials, on Friday, had discussions with the State officials on extension of e-stamping services across the State.

Incidentally, SHCIL sources said following huge rush at the present centres and demand for more counters, they have opened four more at Rajajinagar, Chamarajpet, Ganganagar and Malleswaram.

These, they said, are in addition to those existing at Gandhinagar, Shivajinagar, Jayanagar, K G Road, besides SHCIL offices at J C Road, Jayanagar, Koramangala and Malleswaram.

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