P. Oza & Ors Vs. The State of Maharashtra  INSC 373 (20 July 2000)
Shah & S.N. Variava.
All the Petitioners are nationals and citizens of India.
are all residents of Bombay. By this Petition, under Article 32
of the Constitution of India, the Petitioners seek to challenge levy of stamp
duty on a transfer of shares in a Co-operative Housing Society on the basis
that such agreements are conveyances. It is contended by the Petitioners that
the State Legislature has no competence to levy stamp duty on transfer of
shares in a Housing Co-operative Society, where the transferee, as an incident
of membership, is entitled to the use and occupation of the premises belonging
to the co-operative society. The Petitioners point out that this question is
already pending in Civil Appeal No. 3707 of 1990 before this Court. Thus, the
questions raised in this Petition are identical to those raised in Civil Appeal
No. 3707 of 1990, viz., (a) whether the transfer of shares in the Co-operative
Society is subject to levy of stamp duty under the Bombay Stamp Act, 1958 and
(b) whether the State Legislature has legislative competence to levy stamp duty
on a transfer of shares.