Trivandrum: In an effort to prevent malpractices in land registrations and to make revenue transactions safer, the Kerala Government is preparing to introduce e-stamping in the State. This was announced by Chief Minister, Shri Oommen Chandy while briefing the media after the weekly Cabinet meeting.
Giving details, the CM said the Cabinet has approved an amendment to the Kerala Stamp Act, 1959 to facilitate introduction of the e-Stamping project which involves electronic or online payment of stamp duty to the government. Registered vendors can transact e-stamp certificates.
Even though similar announcements to introduce e-stamping have been made several times in the past, it was never implemented fearing the fury of stamp vendors. The project which has found mention in the last several budgets is yet to be implemented.
According to the Kerala Stamp Vendors Association, around 2,000 approved stamp vendors in the State would be rendered jobless with the implementation of e-stamping in registration offices. The Association had proposed that the facility be implemented through them.
The e-Stamp is a Web-based, secure, tamper-proof system to replace the conventional registration documents. Authorised stamping centres will collect the payment for stamp duty and issue stamp certificates. Besides the convenience of online payment of stamp paper fee, the system enables verification by the user and the government and round-the-clock availability of stamp papers.
It also offers the facility to deposit the exact fee and avoid fleecing by vendors. The stamp certificate generated by the system comes with a unique identification number that can be verified online.
The Stockholding Corporation of India (SCI), the authorised record-keeping agency of the Central government for the e-Stamping project, has held several discussions with State government officials as part of the move to introduce the system.
The e-Stamping system will be applicable for all documents, including sale and mortgage deeds, rental agreements, lease deeds, and power of attorney. It is touted as an effective method to curb corruption and prevent fake stamp paper circulation.
Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Maharashtra and West Bengal are some of the States to have implemented e-stamping. The software has been developed by the National Informatics Centre (NIC). The nodal agency for the project will be the Treasury Department.
Kerala Biz News