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Allowing the appeal, the Court HELD: 1.1. There is a difference between an agreement to sell and a sale. An agreement to sell is not a sale. An agreement to sell becomes a sale after both the parties signed the sale deed. What is relevant in fact is the actual valuation of the property at the time of the sale. The crucial expression used in Section 17 of the Stamp Act, 1899 is “at the time of execution”. Therefore, stamp duty on a sale has to be assessed on the market value of the property at the time of execution of sale deed, and not at the time of the prior agreement to sell, nor at the time of filing of the suit. [Para 10] [115-E; 116-D, E] 1.2. The Stamp Act, 1899 is in the nature of a taxing statute, and it has to be construed strictly; and considerations of hardship or equity have no role to play in its construction. It is true that no one should suffer on account of the pendency of the matter in court but this consideration does not affect the principles of interpretation of a taxing statute. A taxing statute has to be construed as it is. The contingencies that the matter was under litigation and the value of the property by that time shot up cannot be taken into account for interpreting the provisions of a taxing statute. [Para 10 and 14] [116-E; 118-D, E] Sub Registrat, Kodad Town and Mandal v. Amaranaini China Venkat Rao and Ors., AIR (1998) Andhra Pradesh 252, disapproved. 1.3. Literal rule of interpretation applies to the taxing statute. Construing section 17 read with section 2(12) of the Stamp Act in this back-ground, there is no manner of doubt that the registering authority is under an obligation to ascertain the correct market value at that time of registration and should not go by the value mentioned in the instrument. It is true that as per Section 3, which is the charging section, the instrument is to be registered on the basis of the valuation disclosed therein. But Section 3 cannot be read in isolation and has to be read along with Section 17 of the Act. From a composite reading of Sections 3, 17 and 27, it becomes abundantly clear that the valuation given in an instrument is not conclusive. If any doubt arises in the mind of the registering authority that the instrument is under-valued then as per Section 47-A as inserted by Rajasthan Act 10 of 1982 in Rajasthan Stamp Law (Adaptation) Act, 1952, the instrument can be sent to the Collector for determination of the correct market value. Under Section 47-A read with Sections 3, 17 and 27, it becomes clear that the registering authority has to ascertain the correct valuation given in the instrument regarding market value of the property at the time of the sale. [Para 11, 12 and 13] [117-E, F, G, H; 118-A, B] A.V. Fernandez v. State of Kerala, AIR (1957) SC 657, relied on. 1.4. The view taken by the single Judge as well as by the Division Bench of the High Court cannot be sustained and the same is set aside. The Collector shall determine the valuation of the property mentioned in the instrument on the basis of its market value on the date when the document was tendered by the respondent for registration, and the respondent shall pay the stamp duty charges and surcharge, if any, as assessed by the Collector as per the provisions of the Act. [Para 16] [119-B, C] V. Madhukar, Sumit Ghosh and Aruneshwar Gupta for the Appellants. Dr. Manish Singhvi and P.V. Yogeswaran for the Respondents. Stamp Act, 1899: ss. 2(12), 3, 17, and s.47A(as inserted by Rajasthan Act 10 of 1982 in Rajasthan Stamp Law (Adaptation) Act, 1952)-Sale deed-Registration of-Valuation for assessment of stamp duty-HELD: stamp duty on sale has to be assessed on market value of property at the time of registration of sale and not when parties entered into an agreement to sell nor when suit for specific performance of contract is filed. Interpretation of Statutes: Provisions of Stamp Act-Interpretation of-HELD: Stamp Act is in nature of a taxing statute and has to be construed strictly. Deeds and documents-Difference between agreement to sell and sale-Explained. In execution of decrees passed in two suits for specific performance of contract arising out of agreements to sell entered into on 20.10.1983, the court executed the sale deeds and sent the same on 17.3.1995 for registration before the Sub- Registrar, who, exercising his powers u/s. 47-A (1) as inserted by Rajasthan Act 10 of 1982 in Rajasthan Stamp Law (Adaptation) Act, 1952 sent the sale deeds to the Collector for determining market value of the properties and to assess the charge of stamp duty. The Collector assessed the value of the properties and raised deficient stamp duty and deficient registration fees and also levied the penalty. The order of the Collector was challenged in a writ petition before the High Court. The single Judge held that the relevant date for assessment of the market value would be the date on which the suit for specific performance of agreement to sell was filed. The Division Bench of the High Court having affirmed the view of the single Judge, the State Government filed the instant appeal. The question for consideration before the Court was: Whether valuation should be assessed on the market rate prevailing at the time of registration of the sale deed or when the parties entered into the agreement to sell.

Jaipur, Principal Street, c. 1875

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CASE NO.:
Appeal (civil) 5273 of 2007

PETITIONER:
STATE OF RAJASTHAN & ORS

RESPONDENT:
M/S KHANDAKA JAIN JEWELLERS

DATE OF JUDGMENT: 16/11/2007

BENCH:
A.K. MATHUR & MARKANDEY KATJU

JUDGMENT:
J U D G M E N T 

CIVIL APPEAL NO. 5273 OF 2007
[Arising out of S.L.P.(C) No.19439 of 2006]

A.K. MATHUR, J.

1. Leave granted.

2. This appeal is directed against the judgment dated 23.11.2005 
passed by the Division Bench of the High Court of Judicature for 
Rajasthan at Jaipur Bench, Jaipur in SBCWP No. 133/1997 and DBCSA 
No. 427/2002 whereby the division bench has affirmed the order of the 
learned Single Judge. 
3. Brief facts which are necessary for the disposal of this appeal 
are as under:
 The S.B. Civil writ petition No. 133/97 was filed by M/s 
Khandaka Jain Jewellers, petitioner (respondent herein) in the High 
Court of Judicature for Rajasthan, Jaipur Bench, Jaipur who prayed 
that a direction may be issued to the respondent Nos. 2&3 to 
register the sale deeds sent by the Court of additional district 
Judge No. 1, Jaipur city in execution application No. 15/94 and 16/94 
and to send back the same to the Court immediately after 
registration. It was also prayed that the respondents may be 
directed to register the sale deeds on the stamps on which it is 
executed by the executing court and not to charge more stamp duty 
from respondent (herein). It was further prayed to quash and set 
aside the proceedings taken under Section 47A(2) of the Stamps Act, 
1952 in case No. 442/95 and 443/95 on 4th March, 1997 for determination 
of the valuation of the sale deed for registration.
 The respondent is a registered firm and it entered into two 
agreements for purchase of properties with Shri Prem Chand Ajmera, 
resident of 2148, Haldiyon Ka Rasta Jaipur by one agreement dated 20th 
October, 1983. The property was agreed to be purchased for a sum of 
Rs. 1,41,000/- out of which Rs. 20,000/- were paid at the time of the 
agreement. As the vendor failed to comply with the terms of the 
agreement, the respondent vendee filed a suit for specific 
performance of the contract in the Court of district Judge, Jaipur 
city which was later on transferred to the Court of additional 
district Judge No.1, Jaipur city under registration No. 216/86. The 
suit was decreed by the Judgment and decree dated 2nd February,1994. 
In pursuance of the said decree, the respondent firm deposited an 
amount of Rs. 1,21,000/- in the Court on 9th May, 1994. Since the 
vendor did not execute the sale deed, therefore, the respondent firm 
filed the execution application No. 16/90 before the Court of 
additional district Judge No. 1, Jaipur city.

 In another agreement dated 20TH October, 1983 the vendor 
Premchand agreed to sell a portion of property for a sum of Rs. 
50,000/- out of which Rs. 10,000/- was paid at the time of agreement. 
The respondent firm purchased the stamp papers and got the sale deed 
typed. In this case also the vendor failed to fulfill the condition 
of agreement and to execute the sale deed. Consequently, the 
respondent firm filed another suit for specific performance of the 
contract in the Court of district Judge, Jaipur city. It was also 
transferred to the court of additional district Judge No. 1, Jaipur 
city under registration No. 151/91. The suit was decreed vide 
judgment and decree dated 2nd February, 1994 and the respondent firm 
was directed to deposit the remaining amount of Rs. 40,000/- and 
the judgment debtor would execute the sale deed. If the judgment 
debtor fails to comply with the decree, the decree holder would be 
entitled to get the sale deed registered and to get the possession. In 
compliance of the judgment and decree passed by the Court, the 
respondent firm deposited an amount of Rs. 40,000/- in the court but 
the judgment debtor did not execute the sale deed. The execution 
application No. 15/94 was filed before the Court of additional 
district Judge No. 1, Jaipur city. Both these applications No. 
15/94 and 16/94 were taken up by the executing court and the 
respondent firm was directed to submit the stamp papers for the 
execution of the two sale deeds. The stamp papers for a sum of 
Rs.14,100/- and Rs. 5,000/- for execution of the sale deeds in 
respect of properties purchased for a sum of Rs. 1,41,000/- and 
Rs. 50,000/- respectively, were submitted by the respondent firm. 
The learned executing court executed the sale deeds and sent the 
same on 17th March, 1995 for registration before the Sub- 
registrar, Registration Department, Collectorate Bani Park, Jaipur. 
The Sub-Registrar exercising its powers under Section 47A(1) of the 
Stamp Act sent these two sale deeds to Collector (Stamps) Jaipur for 
determining the market value and to assess the charge of the stamp 
duty. The Collector (stamps) registered these two cases No. 
442/95 and 443/95 of the respondent firm and passed the order dated 
5th March, 1997. In case No. 442/95 he assessed value of the 
property as Rs. 5,60,000/- and deficient stamp duty was raised to 
the extent of Rs. 41,900/- and deficient registration fees as Rs 
1500/- and he also levied the penalty of Rs. 1000/-. Thus, the 
total amount against the respondent firm raised was Rs. 44,400/-. In 
the second case No. 443/95 he assessed value of the property as 
Rs. 3,87,580/- and deficient stamp duty to the extent of Rs. 
33,758/- and deficient registration fees as Rs. 1500/- and the 
penalty of Rs. 1000/-. Thus the total amount directed to be recovered 
from the respondent firm was Rs. 36,258/-. The respondent firm 
filed writ petition challenging both these orders and the 
contention of the respondent firm was that the valuation of the 
property should be taken when the agreement of sale deed was 
executed, and not at the time of the registration of the sale deed. 
The learned Single Judge relying on the judgment in the case of Sub 
Registrat, Kodad Town and Mandal v. Amaranaini China Venkat Rao and 
Others reported in AIR 1998 Andhra Pradesh 252 allowed the writ 
petition and observed that since the vendor backed out and did not 
execute the sale deed of the property in pursuance of the agreement 
on 20th October, 1983 therefore, the respondent firm filed a suit 
for specific performance of contract in 1986 and the suit was 
decreed. The respondent firm was ready and willing to pay the amount, 
and therefore, it was not his fault. The same was the position 
regarding the second suit which was filed in 1991. The learned Judge 
after considering the matter directed to set aside both the orders 
and held that for the purpose of charging stamp duty, etc, the 
relevant date for assessment of the market value shall be the date on 
which the suit for specific performance of the agreement to sale was 
filed. Consequently the order dated 4th March, 1997 (Annexure 5 & 6) 
was quashed and the authorities were directed to pass a fresh order 
regarding the market value of the property in question for the purpose 
of levy of the stamp duty as on the date of filing of the suit and 
also directed to undertake this exercise keeping in view the 
observation of the judgment within a period of one month from the date 
of receipt of the certified copy of the order after notice to 
respondent firm.
4. Aggrieved against this order, an appeal was preferred before the 
Division Bench of the Rajasthan High Court at Jaipur Bench and the 
Division Bench affirmed the order of the learned single Judge. 
Aggrieved against the order of the Division Bench, the present appeal 
was preferred by the State of Rajasthan & Ors., appellants herein.
5. We have heard learned counsel for the parties and perused the 
records.
6. The question is whether the valuation should be assessed on the 
market rate prevailing at the time of registration of the sale deed or 
when the parties entered into agreement to sell. 
7. Learned counsel for the State has submitted that the Stamp Act is 
a taxing statute and a taxing statute has to be construed strictly. 
Whatsoever may have been the consideration for the vendor not to get 
the sale deed executed is a matter between both the parties, but 
when the matter is before the registering Authority the registering 
Authority has to see the valuation of the property at the market rate 
at the time of the registration as per Section 17 of the Act. 
Therefore, a notice under Section 47A of the (Rajasthan Amendment) 
Stamp Duty Act was given and proper valuation was determined for 
registration. As against this, the learned counsel for the 
respondent submitted that Section 3 of the Act is a charging 
section. The registering authority has to see the instrument and the 
consideration mentioned therein for payment of duty as per Section 27 
of the Act. If he finds it undervalued then he can hold an inquiry 
with regard to market value which was prevailing at the time of 
agreement to sell.
8. In order to appreciate the controversy involved in the matter, 
it is necessary to reproduce the relevant provisions of the Stamp Act 
which are as under:
Section 2(12) of the Act reads as under:
"(12) "Executed", and "execution", used with reference 
to instruments, mean "signed" and "signature"."

Section 3 of the Act reads as under:
"3. Instruments chargeable with duty - Subject to the 
provisions of this Act and the exemptions contained 
in Schedule I, the following instruments shall be 
chargeable with duty of the amount indicated in that 
Schedule as the proper duty therefore, respectively, 
that is to say 
(a) every instrument mentioned in that Schedule which, 
not having been previously executed by any person, 
is executed in (India) on or after the first day of 
July, 1899;
(b) every bill of exchange payable otherwise than on 
demand or promissory note drawn or made out of 
India on or after that day and accepted or paid, 
or presented for acceptance or payment, or 
endorsed, transferred or otherwise negotiated, in 
India; and
(c) every instrument (other than a bill exchange or 
promissory note) mentioned in that Schedule, which, 
not having been previously executed by any person, 
is executed out of India on or after that day 
relates to any property situate, or to any matter 
or thing done or to be done, in India and is 
received in India:

Provided that no duty shall be chargeable in respect 
of-
(1) any instrument executed by, or on behalf of, or in 
favour of, the Government in cases where, but for 
this exemption, the Government would be liable to 
pay the duty chargeable in respect of such 
instrument;
(2) any instrument for the sale, transfer or other 
disposition, either absolutely or by way of 
mortgage or otherwise, of any ship or vessel, or 
any part, interest, share or property of or in any 
ship or vessel, registered under the Merchant 
Shipping Act, 1894, or under Act 19 of 1938, or 
the Indian Registration of Ships Act, 1841 (10 of 
1841) as amended by subsequent Acts.
(3) Any instrument executed, by or on behalf of, or in 
favour of the Developer, or Unit or in connection 
with the carrying out of purposes of the Special 
Economic Zone.

"

Section 17 of the Act reads as under:

"17. Instruments executed in India  All instrument 
chargeable with duty and executed by any person in 
India shall be stamped before or at the time of 
execution."

Section 27 of the Act reads as under:

"27.Facts affecting duty to be set forth in 
instrument.- The consideration (if any) and all 
other facts and circumstances affecting the 
chargeability of any instrument with duty, or the 
amount of the duty with which it is chargeable, 
shall be fully and truly set forth therein."

 Section 47-A inserted by Rajasthan(Amendment) 
State Stamp Act reads as under:

"S.47-A Instruments under-valued, how to be valued 
 (1) Notwithstanding anything contained in the 
Registration Act, 1908 (Central Act XVI of 1908) 
and the rules made thereunder as in force in 
Rajasthan where in the case of any instrument 
relating to an immovable property chargeable with 
an ad valorem duty on the market value of the 
property as set forth in the instrument, the 
registering officer has, while registering the 
instruments, reason to believe that the market 
value of the property has not been truly set forth 
in the instrument, he may either before or after 
registering the instrument, send it in original to 
the Collector for determination of the market-value 
and to assess and charge the duty in conformity 
with such determination together with a penalty not 
exceeding ten-times the deficient stamp duty 
chargeable and surcharge, if any, payable on such 
instrument.

(2) On receipt of the instrument under sub-
section(1), the Collector shall, after giving the 
parties a reasonable opportunity of being heard and 
after holding an enquiry in the prescribed manner 
determine the market-value and the duty including 
penalty and surcharge, if any, payable thereon; and 
if the amount of duty including penalty and 
surcharge, if any, already paid, is deficient, the 
deficient amount shall be payable by the person 
liable to pay the duty including penalty and 
surcharge, if any.

(2-A) Where it appears to a person having by law or 
consent of parties authority to receive evidence or 
a person in charge of a public office, during the 
course of inspection or otherwise, except an 
officer of a police, that an instrument is 
undervalued, such person shall forthwith make a 
reference to the Collector in that matter.

(3)The Collector may, suo motu, or on a reference 
made under sub-section (2-A) call for and examine 
any instrument not referred to him under sub-
section (1), from any person referred to in sub-
section (2-A) or the executant or any other person 
for the purpose of satisfying himself as to the 
correctness of the market-value of such property 
has not been truly set forth in the instrument, he 
may determine in accordance with the procedure 
provided in sub-section(2), the market-value and 
the amount of stamp duty together with a penalty 
not exceeding ten times the deficient stamp duty 
chargeable on it, which shall be payable by the 
person liable to pay the stamp duty and penalty.

(4)Where for any reason the original document 
called for by the Collector under sub-section(3) 
is not produced or cannot be produced, the 
Collector may after recording the reasons for its 
non-production call for a certified copy of the 
entries of the document from the registering 
officer concerned and exercise the powers conferred 
on him under sub-section (3).

(5)For the purpose of enquiries under this section, 
the Collector shall have power to summon and 
enforce the attendance of witnesses including the 
parties to the instrument or any of them, and to 
complete the production of documents by the same 
means, and so far as may be in the same manner, as 
is provided in the case of Civil Court under Code 
of Civil Procedure, 1908 (Central Act V of 1908)"

9. The contention of the learned counsel for the State that as per 
Section 17 of the Act, the market value has to be taken into 
consideration because Section 17 stipulates that all the instruments 
chargeable with duty and executed by person of India shall be 
stamped before or "at the time of execution". The word "execution" 
has been defined in Section 2(12) of the Act which says that 
"Execution" used with reference to the instruments, mean "signed" and 
"signature". Therefore, it shows that the document which is sought 
to be registered has to be signed by both the parties. Till that time 
the document does not become an instrument for registration. A 
reading of Section 2(12) with Section 17 clearly contemplates that 
the document should be complete in all respects when both the parties 
should have signed it with regard to the transfer of the immovable 
property. It is irrelevant whether the matter had gone in for 
litigation. 
10. It may be mentioned that there is a difference between an 
agreement to sell and a sale. Stamp duty on a sale has to be assessed 
on the market value of the property at the time of the sale, and not 
at the time of the prior agreement to sell, nor at the time of filing 
of the suit. This is evident from section 17 of the Act. It is true 
that as per Section 3, the instrument is to be registered on the 
basis of the valuation disclosed therein. But Section 47-A of the 
Rajasthan(Amendment) Stamp Duty Act contemplates that in case it is 
found that properties are under valued then it is open for the 
Collector (Stamps) to assess the correct market value. Therefore, 
in the present case when the registering authority found that 
valuation of the property was not correct as mentioned in the 
instrument, it sent the document to the Collector for ascertaining 
the correct market value of the property. The expression "execution" 
read with Section 17 leaves no manner of doubt that the current 
valuation is to be seen when the instrument is sought to be 
registered. The Stamp Act is in the nature of a taxing statute, and 
a taxing statute is not dependant on any contingency. Since the word 
"execution" read with Section 17 clearly says that the instrument 
has to be seen at the time when it is sought to be registered and in 
that if it is found that the instrument has been undervalued then it 
is open for the registering authority to enquire into its correct 
market value. The learned single Judge as well as the Division 
Bench in the present case had taken into consideration that the 
agreement to sell was entered into but it was not executed. 
Therefore, the incumbent had to file a suit for seeking a decree 
for execution of the agreement and that took a long time. Therefore, 
the Courts below concluded that the valuation which was in the 
instrument should be taken into account. In our opinion this is not a 
correct approach. Even the valuation at the time of the decree is 
also not relevant. What is relevant in fact is the actual valuation 
of the property at the time of the sale. The crucial expression used 
in Section 17 is "at the time of execution". Therefore, the market 
value of the instrument has to be seen at the time of the execution 
of the sale deed, and not at the time when agreement to sale was 
entered into. An agreement to sell is not a sale. An agreement to 
sell becomes a sale after both the parties signed the sale deed. A 
taxing statute is not contingent on the inconvenience of the 
parties. It is needless to emphasize that a taxing statute has to 
be construed strictly and considerations of hardship or equity 
have no role to play in its construction. VISCOUNT SIMON quoted with 
approval a passage from ROWLATT, J. expressing the principle in the 
following words
" In a taxing Act one has to look merely at what 
is clearly said. There is no room for any 
intendment. There is no equity about a tax. 
There is no presumption as to tax. Nothing is 
to be read in, nothing is to be implied. One can 
only look fairly at the language used."

11. The same view was expressed by Hon'ble Bhagwati J. in the 
case of A.V. Fernandez v. State of Kerala reported in AIR 1957 SC 
657. The principle is as follows: 
 "In construing fiscal statutes and in determining 
the liability of a subject to tax one must have 
regard to the strict letter of the law. If the 
revenue satisfies the court that the case falls 
strictly within the provisions of the law, the 
subject can be taxed. If on the other hand, the 
case is not covered within the four corners of the 
provisions of the taxing statute, no tax can be 
imposed by inference or by analogy or by trying to 
probe into the intention of the Legislature and by 
considering what was the substance of the matter."

Hon'ble Shah J has formulated the principle thus: 
"In interpreting a taxing statute, equitable 
considerations are entirely out of place. Nor can 
taxing statutes be interpreted on any presumptions 
or assumptions. The court must look squarely at the 
words of the statute and interpret them. It must 
interpret a taxing statute in the light of what is 
clearly expressed; it cannot imply anything which 
is not expressed; it cannot import provisions in 
the statute so as to supply any assumed 
deficiency."

Therefore, a taxing statute has to be read as it is. In other 
words, the literal rule of interpretation applies to it.
12. In this back-ground, if we construe Section 17 read with 
Section 2(12) then there is no manner of doubt that at the time of 
registration, the Registering Authority is under an obligation to 
ascertain the correct market value at that time, and should not go by 
the value mentioned in the instrument. 

 13. Learned counsel for the respondent submitted that if we 
construe Section 3 read with Section 27 of the Act then the 
Registering Authority is under an obligation to only see the value 
mentioned in the instrument. In our opinion Section 3 which is the 
charging section cannot be read in isolation but has to be read 
along with Section 17 of the Act. From a composite reading of 
Sections 3,17 and 27, it becomes abundantly clear that the valuation 
given in an instrument is not conclusive. If any doubt arises in the 
mind of the Registering Authority that the instrument is under-
valued then as per Section 47-A of the Rajasthan (Amendment) the 
instrument can be sent to the Collector for determination of the 
correct market value. Under Section 47-A read with Sections 3,17 and 
27, it becomes clear that the Registering Authority has to 
ascertain the correct valuation given in the instrument regarding 
market value of the property at the time of the sale.
14. Learned Counsel for the respondent strenuously urged before us 
that in fact when the agreement to sell was not executed by the 
vendor, the respondent had no option but to file a suit and a 
long time was taken for obtaining a decree for execution of the 
agreement. He was not at fault and as such the valuation given in the 
instrument should be taken into consideration because during the 
litigation the valuation of the property has shot up. In this 
connection, learned counsel has invited our attention to the 
principle "Actus curie neminem gravabit" meaning thereby that no 
person shall suffer on account of litigation. Hence learned counsel 
submitted that since the matter had been in the litigation for a 
long time, the respondent cannot be made to suffer. He invited our 
attention to the decision of the Andhra Pradesh High Court Sub-
Registrar, Kodad Town and Mandal (supra). It is true that no one 
should suffer on account of the pendency of the matter but this 
consideration does not affect the Principles of interpretation of a 
taxing statute. A taxing statute has to be construed as it is all 
these contingencies that the matter was under litigation and the 
value of the propeprty by that time shot up cannot be taken into 
account for interpreting the provisions of a taxing statute. As 
already mentioned above a taxing statute has to be construed strictly 
and if it is construed strictly then the plea that the incumbent 
took a long time to get a decree for execution against the vendor 
that consideration cannot weigh with the Court for interpreting the 
provisions of the taxing statutes. Therefore, simply because the 
matter have been in the litigation for a long time that cannot be 
a consideration to accept the market value of the instrument when 
the agreement to sale was entered. As per Section 17, it clearly says 
at the time when registration is made, the valuation is to be seen 
on that basis.
15. In the case of Sub-Registrar, Kodad Town and Mandal (Supra), 
the learned single Judge of the Andhra Pradesh High Court felt 
persuaded on account of 30 years' long litigation and therefore, 
declined to send the papers back to the Collector for valuation at 
the market value. With great respect, the view taken by the learned 
single Judge is against the principles of interpretation of a taxing 
statute. Therefore, we are of the opinion that the view taken by 
the learned single Judge of the Andhra Pradesh High Court is not 
correct.
16. Accordingly, we are of the opinion that the view taken by the 
learned single Judge as well as by the Division Bench cannot be 
sustained and the same is set aside. The Collector shall determine 
was the valuation of the instrument on the basis of the market 
value of the property at the date when the document was tendered by 
the respondent for registration, and the respondent shall pay the 
stamp duty charges and surcharge, if any, as assessed by the 
Collector as per the provisions of the Act. The appeal of the State 
is allowed. No order as to costs.

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