In a significant move that is likely to further affect the mining sector, the Odisha steel and mines department has reportedly asked the authorities to collect the stamp duty from mines operating under deemed extension by July 9, failing which the operation will be stopped.
“It is necessary to ensure collection of the stamp duty from the mining lessees who are availing the benefit of deemed extension of the lease deed to fulfill the objective of the Amending Act failing which mining operation shall be stopped. You are, therefore, requested not to allow operation of the mines, unless the payment of stamp duty is made on or before 9th July,” said Principal Secretary Steel and Mines Rajesh Verma in a letter to all the District Collectors.
The stamp duty will be realized as per the provisions of the Indian Stamp (Odisha Amendment) Act, 2013 and Odisha Stamp Rules, 1952 as amended by the amending rules of 2013.
Informing that the instructions have been issued with the concurrence of the Revenue and Disaster Management department (R&DM), which collects stamp duty during the lease deed, Mr.Verma asked the mining officers of all the mining circles to strictly ensure compliance of the order.
The letter also said that in case of renewals covered under this sub-section and where the lease expires after July 9, the payment of requisite stamp duty has to be made by the renewal applicant on or before the date of expiry of the lease, failing which the miners shall also not be allowed to operate the mines under deemed extension provision.
It is to be noted that the R & DM department had issued necessary instructions on 25 May to all the Collectors to ensure payment of stamp duty by the applicants for renewal of the mining lease who have made such applications to the state government prior to the expiry of the lease.
The State Government had issued Gazette notification after bringing an amendment in the Indian Stamp (Odisha amendment) Bill-2013, which provides for collection of stamp duty from the mines operating under deemed extension.
Odisha Government expects to mop up additional revenue of about Rs 1,000 crore annually from the mining sector. It amended the Act and has decided to levy 15 per cent stamp duty on mining leases in future as well as for preceding period from the mines operating under deemed extension.
The newly inserted section 3 (A) of the Indian Stamp (Odisha Amendment) Act, 2013, says that on every instrument of grant or renewal of a mining lease, the stamp duty chargeable shall be equivalent to 15 per cent of the amount of average royalty that would accrue out of the highest annual extraction of minerals permitted under the approved mining plan multiplied by the period of such mining lease