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Interpretation clause.

§ 3.

Instruments chargeable with duty.

THE INDIAN STAMP ACT, 1879.

(ACT I OF 1879.) “ Banker" includes a bank and any person acting as a banker. Bill of exchange" includes a hundi.

Cheque” means a bill of exchange drawn on a banker and payable on demand.

Receiptmeans any note, memorandum, writing, or advertisement whereby any money or any bill of exchange, cheque, or promissory note is acknowledged to have been received, or whereby any other movable property is acknowledged to have been received in satisfaction of a debt, or whereby any debt or demand or any part of any debt or demand is acknowledged to have been satisfied or discharged, or which signifies or imports any such acknowledgment, whether the same is or is not signed with the name of any person.

§ 5. Subject to the exemptions contained in the second schedule the following instruments shall be chargeable with duty of the amount indicated in the first schedule as the proper duty therefor respectively, that is to say :

(a). Every instrument mentioned in the first schedule, and which, not having been previously executed by any person, is executed in British India on or after 1st April, 1879.

(b). Every bill of exchange, cheque or promissory note drawn or made out of British India on or after that day and accepted or paid, or presented for acceptance or payment, or indorsed, transferred or otherwise negotiated in British India.

(c). Every instrument (other than a bill of exchange, cheque or promissory note) mentioned in the first schedule, which, not having been previously executed by any person, is executed out of British India on or after that day, relates to any property situate or to any matter or things done or to be done in British India and is received in British India.

B.-Of Stamps and the Mode of using them. 9. Except as otherwise expressly provided in this Act, all duties with which any instruments are chargeable shall be paid,

Duties how to be paid.

and such payment shall be indicated on such instruments, by means of stamps

(a) according to the provisions herein contained, or

(6) when no such provision is applicable thereto—as the Governor-General in Council may by rule direct.

The rules made under this section may, among other matters, regulate

(1) in the case of each kind of instrument-the description of stamps which may be used,

(2) in the case of instruments stamped with impressed stamps—the number of stamps which may be used,

(3) in the case of hundís—the size of the paper on which they are written.

§ 10. The following instruments may be stamped with Adhesive adhesive stamps, namely :

stamps. (a). Instruments chargeable with the duty of one anna, except parts of bills of exchange payable otherwise than on demand and drawn in sets ;

(b). Bills of exchange, cheques and promissory notes drawn or made out of British India;

(c). Notarial acts.

§ 11. Whoever affixes any adhesive stamp to any instrument Cancellation of chargeable with duty and which has been executed by any adhesive person shall, when affixing such stamp, cancel the same so that stamps. it cannot be used again.

And whoever executes any instrument on any paper bearing an adhesive stamp shall, at the time of execution, unless such stamp has been already cancelled in manner aforesaid, cancel the same so that it cannot be used again.

Any instrument bearing an adhesive stamp which has not been cancelled so that it cannot be used again, shall, so far as such stamp is concerned, be deemed to be unstamped.

§ 12. Every instrument written upon paper stamped with Instrument on an impressed stamp, shall be written in such manner that the impressed stamp may appear on the face of the instrument, and cannot stamp. be used for, or applied to, any other instrument.

13. No second instrument chargeable with duty shall be writ- Only one in. ten upon a piece of stamped paper upon which an instrument strument to be chargeable with duty has already been written: provided that on same stamp. nothing in this section shall prevent any indorsement which is duly stamped or is not chargeable with duty being made upon any instrument for the purpose of transferring anyright created or evidenced thereby, or acknowledging the receipt of any money or goods the payment or delivery of which is secured thereby.

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Instrument 14. Every instrument written in contravention of section written con. twelve or thirteen, shall be deemed to be unstamped. trary to Sec. tion 12 or 13 deemed unstamped. Indian instru. § 16. All instruments chargeable with duty and executed by ments.

any person in British India, shall be stamped before or at the time of execution.

(See § 44, post.) Bills, notes $ 18. The first holder in British India of any bill of exchange, and cheques cheque, or promissory note, drawn or made out of British India drawn out of

shall, before he presents the same for acceptance or payment, or British India,

indorses, transfers, or otherwise negotiates the same in British India, affix thereto the proper stamp, and cancel the same :

Provided that if, at the time, any such bill, cheque, or note comes into the hands of any holder thereof in British India, the proper adhesive stamp is affixed thereto and cancelled in manner prescribed by § 11, and such holder has no reason to believe that such stamp was affixed or cancelled otherwise than by the person and at the time required by this Act, such stamp shall, so far as relates to such holder, be deemed to have been duly affixed and cancelled. But nothing contained in this proviso shall relieve any person from any penalty incurred by

him for omitting to affix or cancel a stamp. Conversion of § 19. Where an instrument is chargeable with ad valorem amount ex

duty in respect of an amount expressed in pounds sterling, pressed in certain curren.

pounds currency, francs, or dollars, such duty shall be calculated cies.

on the value of such money in the currency of British India according to the following scale

One pound sterling or pound currency is equivalent to ten rupees.

One hundred francs are equivalent to forty rupees.
One Mexican or China dollar is equivalent to two rupees four

annas.

Conversion of amount in other foreign currencies.

Statement of exchange in instrument,

§ 20. Where an instrument is chargeable with ad valorem duty in respect of any money expressed in any other foreign or colonial currency, such duty shall be calculated on the value of such money in the currency of British India, according to the current rate of exchange on the day of the date of the instrument.

§ 22. Where an instrument contains a statement of current rate of exchange or average price as the case may require, and is stamped in accordance with such statement, it shall, so far as regards the subject-matter of such statement, be presumed until the contrary is proved, to be duly stamped.

§ 23. Where interest is expressly made payable by the

Instruments

terms of an instrument, such instrument shall not be chargeable reserving interwith duty higher than that with which it would have been est. chargeable had no mention of interest been made therein.

§ 27. The consideration (if any), and all other facts and Facts affecting circumstances affecting the chargeability of any instrument duty to be set

. with duty, shall be fully and truly set forth therein.

§ 29. In the absence of an agreement to the contrary, the Duties, by expense of providing the proper stamps shall be borne

whom payable. (a) In the case of any instrument described in number 11, of the first schedule, by the person drawing, making or executing such instrument.

§ 34. No instrument chargeable with duty shall be admitted Instruments in evidence for any purpose by any person having, by law or not duly consent of parties, authority to receive evidence, or shall be missible in

stamped inad acted upon, registered or authenticated by any such person, or evidence, &c. by any public officer, unless such instrument is duly stamped.

Provided that :

1st. Any such instrument, not being an instrument charge- Proviso. able with a duty of one anna only, or a bill of exchange or promissory note, shall, subject to all just exceptions, be admitted in evidence on payment of the duty with which the same is Instruments

admissible on chargeable or (in the case of an instrument insufficiently stamped) of the amount required to make up such duty, together with a

payment of

duty and penalty of five rupees, or when ten times the amount of the penalty. proper duty or deficient portion thereof exceeds five rupees, of a sum equal to ten times such duty or portion.

2nd. Nothing herein contained shall prevent the admission And in certain of any instrument in evidence in any proceeding in a criminal criminal procourt other than a proceeding under Chapter XL or Chapter ceedings. XLI of the Code of Criminal Procedure, or Chapter XVIII of the Presidency Magistrates Act.

3rd. When an instrument has been admitted in evidence, Admission of such admission shall not, except as provided in § 50, be called instruments in question at any stage of the same suit or proceeding, on the not to be ques. ground that the instrument has not been duly stamped.

§ 44. When any bill of exchange or promissory note charge- Power of payee able with the duty of one anna, or any cheque is presented for to stamp bills,

notes and payment unstamped, the person to whom it is so presented may

cheques. affix thereto the necessary stamp, and upon cancelling the

received by in manner herein before provided may pay the sum payable upon him unstampsuch bill, note or cheque, and may charge the duty against the ed. person who ought to have paid the same, or, deduct it from the sum payable as aforesaid, and such bill note or cheque shall, so far as respects the duty, be deemed good and valid.

But nothing herein contained shall relieve any person from

tioned.

same

any penalty he may have incurred in relation to such bill,

note or cheque. Allowance for

§ 51. Subject to such rules as may be made by the Governorspoiled stamps. General in Council as to the evidence which the collector may

require, allowance shall be made by the collector for impressed stamps spoiled in the cases hereinafter mentioned, namely :

(a) The stamp on any paper inadvertently and undesignedly spoiled, obliterated, or by any means rendered unfit for the purpose intended, before any instrument written thereon is executed by any person.

(6) The stamp used, or intended to be used, for any bill of exchange, cheque or promissory note, signed by, or on behalf of, the drawer or intended drawer, but not delivered out of his hands to the payee or intended payee, or any person on his behalf, or deposited with any person as a security for the payment of money, or in any way negotiated, issued or put in circalation, or made use of in any other manner, and which being a bill of exchange, or cheque, has not been accepted by the drawee, and provided that the paper on which any such stamp is impressed does not bear any signature as or for the acceptance of any bill of exchange or cheque to be afterwards written thereon.

(c) The stamp used, or intended to be used, for any bill of exchange, cheque or promissory note signed by, or on behalf of, the drawer thereof, but which from any omission or error has been spoiled or rendered useless, although the same, being a bill of exchange or cheque, may have been presented for acceptance, or accepted or indorsed, or being a promissory note, may have been delivered to the payee, provided that another completed and duly stamped bill of exchange, cheque or promissory note is produced identical in every particular, except in the correction of such omission or error as aforesaid

with the spoiled bill, cheque or note. Obligation to § 58. Any person receiving any money exceeding twenty give receipt in rupees in amount, or any bill of exchange, cheque or promissory certain cases. note for an amount exceeding twenty rupees or receiving in

satisfaction of a debt any moveable property exceeding twenty rupees in value shall, on demand by the person paying or delivering such money, bill, cheque, note or property, give a duly

stamped receipt for the same. Penalty for § 61. Any person drawing, making, issuing, indorsing or executing, &c., transferring, or signing otherwise than as a witness, or presenting instruments for acceptance or payment, or accepting, paying or receiving paynot duly

ment of, or in any manner negotiating, any bill of exchange. stamped.

cheque or promissory note without the same being duly stamped.

Any person executing or signing otherwise than as a witness any other instrument chargeable with daty without the same being duly stamped,

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