The Maharashtra government has clarified that stamp paper is not required for the affidavits filed by applicants for different certificates, such as caste and income certificates. Officials said this will save the general public crores of rupees.
The inspector general of registration (IGR) and controller of stamps has written to collectors of districts, commissioners of corporations and heads of various government departments, asking them not to demand affidavits on stamp paper from applicants.
The offices have also been told that affidavits on plain paper will be valid for the issuance of any certificate. The letter also states that the offices should encourage applicants to not waste money on stamp duty papers, which usually cost between Rs 100 and Rs 200.
Despite a government notification issued in 2004, the government offices have been insisting that applications for different certificates be made on stamp paper.
Paying heed to the matter, the government has said that affidavits declaring income, domicile, nationality among others do not need to be made on stamp paper. The government officials claimed crores of rupees are wasted on stamp paper, just because of the lack of awareness, among people and officials alike.
“During college admissions, lakhs of caste and income certificates are issued, for which applications are made on stamp paper. This is sheer waste of the public’s money. The value of the stamp paper is great among poor people in the rural areas, and this is why we are trying to create awareness among officials and the common man. In some offices, we have pasted the copy of the notification, which was issued 10 years ago,” said an official from the revenue department.
He said that despite clear directives issued ahead of the Lok Sabha and Assembly elections, almost all the candidates declare their assets on stamp paper worth Rs100. He said government bodies such as Mhada, SRA also insist on the payment of stamp duty.
Shreekar Pardeshi, IGR, said, “We want to stop the waste of public money by creating awareness among the people.”