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Property price revision on hold

- Model code of conduct delays new rate implementation process

The prevailing election model code of conduct has saved citizens from facing a hike in property prices for the second consecutive year, at least for some time.

The district registration office in the last week came up with the revised minimum value register (MVR) — the base rate for fixing the stamp duty of any property in a location — for the coming fiscal year.

The list of proposed rates was also put on the website of Patna district administration for seeking feedback from residents but the entire process has now been put on hold.

District magistrate-cum-district registrar N. Saravana Kumar claimed that the rate revision was proposed as per the annual exercise only but the registration, excise and prohibition department has not given any formal directive regarding the same this year.

“As per norms, the MVR is supposed to be revised annually and that is the reason the rates were proposed to be revised. However, the model code of conduct is already in effect and the registration department has also not given any specific instruction in this regard. Thus, we are not going to implement the revised MVR in the near future,” he said.

Another senior official at the district registration office claimed that even the process of accepting feedback on the proposed MVR has also been stopped as of now. “While there is no instruction on expected time for implementation of the proposed MVR, the process of receiving feedback from residents is also expected to remain on hold till code of conduct is lifted after the elections,” said the official.

The last revision in the MVR was made effective by the registration department on May 15 last year. The hike in the MVR in several localities in the city was up to 300 per cent. Sources claimed that the reason behind revision in the MVR is to minimise the gap between the government rate of land and the market rate, thus keeping a tab on corruption in registration and black-marketing.

However, developers claim that the revision in the MVR is in fact to an inverse impact on the property prices in numerous cases. “In many localities in the city, the revised MVR rates have become higher than the marker rates. Thus, even though developers would want to sell it on market rates but they are forced to sell it at the government rates, which is higher, otherwise the income tax department would consider it as tax evasion,” said Sachin Chandra, chairman, Bihar chapter, Builders Association of India.

Those planning to buy or sell land on the outskirts of the city also oppose the MVR revision. “The valuation of land as residential purpose land is quite higher that agricultural land. This leads to unnecessary financial constraint in sale- purchase of land on the fringes. Higher government rates of land make it unaffordable for many buyers and the sellers, who have any urgency to sell of their land, are at times not able to do so,” said Shailendra Kumar, resident of Mithapur.