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STATE WEIGHS STAMP DUTY HIKE TO FUND IRRIGATION PROJECTS IN DROUGHT-HIT AREAS

stump-duty-2The Maharashtra government is considering a proposal to increase stamp duty to raise revenue for irrigation projects in parts of the state reeling under a droughtlike situation. The decision, however, is likely to kick up a political furor since the proceeds of this increase are seen to flow only to one region: western Maharashtra. Incidentally, all big guns in the Nationalist Congress Party, which has proposed the move, come from western Maharashtra. The state Cabinet would soon consider a recommendation to this effect made by a Cabinet sub-committee under deputy chief minister RR Patil of the NCP. If the proposal gets through, all parts of the state, except some districts in western Maharashtra will have to pay a higher stamp duty. Western Maharashtra will be spared the stamp duty hike since the proceeds from the duty would be used to complete pending irrigation projects in these regions.

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