Madras HC refuses to overturn ruling on property guideline values, instructing the state government to adhere to 2017 values until revised by the valuation committee.

Madras HC Ruling on Property Guideline Values

The Madras High Court recently issued a decision regarding the revision of guideline values for properties in Chennai. A division bench comprising justices SM Subramaniam and K Rajasekar upheld the ruling that quashed the 2023 circular issued by the Inspector General of Registration, directing the state government to maintain the 2017 guideline values until they undergo revision by the valuation committee.

Background and Legal Proceedings

The court’s decision came in response to appeals filed by the state government challenging the single judge’s order to annul the revised guideline values. The single judge had ruled in favor of the petitioners, including CREDAI, highlighting procedural irregularities in the revision process. The government’s contention that the restoration of older guideline values did not necessitate adherence to statutory procedures was dismissed by the bench as a “colorable exercise of power.”

Directive on Guideline Values and Stamp Duty

In its directive, the bench instructed the government to adhere to the market value guidelines established since June 9, 2017, until the valuation committee revises them through proper legal procedures. Notably, individuals who registered documents during the period covered by the circular are excluded from seeking relief, and no refunds for stamp duty paid based on the circular will be granted. This decision clarifies the legal framework surrounding property transactions and stamp duty obligations in Chennai.

Implications and Future Considerations

The Madras HC’s ruling carries significant implications for property owners, developers, and the real estate market in Chennai. By upholding the importance of adhering to statutory procedures in revising guideline values, the court ensures transparency and legality in property transactions. Moving forward, stakeholders must await the outcome of the valuation committee’s review and adhere to existing guidelines. This decision underscores the judiciary’s role in safeguarding the integrity of property-related regulations and upholding the rule of law.

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