The circle rate of a complex being developed in Tollygunge has been increased from Rs 4,180 per sq ft to Rs 9,900 per sq ft in August, nearly a month after the budget proposed a 10% reduction in circle rate along with a 2% cut in stamp duty till October 30. However, home buyers were unable to take advantage of the concessions due to a glitch in the software. Though that problem has since been resolved, the massive hike in circle rates in select projects has come as a shock to both developers and customers.
In another project on the edge of New Alipore and Behala, the circle rate has been increased by 81%. A project on Alipore Road has seen the circle rate being revised by 42% while another on Christopher Road in Tangra has had a 34% increase in circle rate earlier this month. Incidentally, one of the projects has been under way for five years while another has been under development for three years.
The legal officer of the Bengal chapter of Confederation of Real Estate Developers Association of India (Credai) has written to inspector general of registration and commissioner of stamp duty T Balasubramanian, citing the anomaly that has deprived home buyers in these projects from availing of the concession announced in the budget.
Speaking to TOI, Balasubramanian said two of the projects in question have been categorised as special projects since they offer better amenities than others in the locality and therefore command a higher sale price. “This is routine exercise. The new rates are being reflected now because the system has been upgraded recently,” he clarified, adding that the other cases were being reviewed by the department.
Developers questioned why the rates were not revised either earlier or after the concession period expires in October-end. They also pointed out that the projects were under development for years and should have been categorised as special projects earlier.
“The upward revision in circle rates should not have happened between the time the rate concession was announced on July 7 and October 30 when the concession period ends. Also, the reason behind jacking up rates to level much beyond the project sale price should be transparently explained,” said Credai Bengal chairman Nandu Belani. The revised circle rates of all the four projects is 30%-50% higher than the sale price.