Guidance curve for realty

NHB Residex will ensure transparency and hence attract more foreign investment, builders tell S. Satyanarayanan

Property dealings in India are still riddled with “grey” buisness and transparency in deals is still a far cry in many parts of the country. With the real estate boom in the country, property prices are skyrocketing and there is an element of overheating.

This scenario has led to many customers becoming jittery about the real value of the property that they are planning to purchase due to lack of authentic information of the prevailing market value. The National Housing Bank (NHB), the regulator for housing finance companies in the country, has tried to bridge this gap by launching first housing price index called NHB Residex for five cities - Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Kolkata and Bhopal.

The index will give people an idea of increase in the price of residential accommodation in a city. According to NHB’s Executive Director R.V. Verma, in the next phase, the bank will launch the index for 35 new cities with population over a million as per the 2001 census. This would include Ludhiana and Amritsar in Punjab.

According to NHB, the residential index of a city will be a number which will suggest the average value of residential properties at that point of time in the city in comparison to 2001, which has been chosen as the base year. The index will be prepared every six months.

The real estate players have generally welcomed the NHB’s effort, but are sceptical about this move resulting in curbing black economy in the sector.

“There is no doubt that as a concept it is a good move as it will help infuse transparency in the real estate sector. However, since the index will use only official transaction value, which, in a majority of the cases is far below the market rate, it would not be very accurate representation of the market prices,” K P Singh, DGM (Sales), Pearl Infrastructure said.

“Even if the index is not cent per cent accurate, yet close to the prevailing market prices, it will help the end users in getting more home loans as banks can base their lending on the basis of this benchmark,” Singh said, adding, there should be consistent effort from various arms of the government to bring transparency in property deals.

Welcoming the NHB move, Krishna Kant, Chief Executive of Era Landmarks (India) Ltd felt this move would help bring in more transparency in the real estate sector, which is a pre-requisite for attracting more foreign direct investment.

“It will bring transparency in property deals. The index is expected to act as reliable benchmark in the booming housing market and enable buyers to make correct assessments,” Kant said.

“This will also be conducive for keeping a check on the developers,” he said, adding: “There is also a possibility that realty sector will attract more FDI as to an extent the lack of transparency has been a hurdle in this regard".

M S Aggarwal, Managing Director, MSX Developers Pvt Limited, said NHB Residex will lend stability to the real estate sector.

“We welcome this step taken by the NHB. It will bring transparency in the property deals as developers we foresee it as a benchmark in the booming housing market. It will forbid the developers in adopting malpractices.”

He also felt like others that infusion of transparency in the booming housing sector through steps like the one taken by NHB would create a conducive atmosphere for enhanced FDI in the real estate sector.

According to Sahara Infrastructure and Housing Spokesperson Suryaveer Singh, the absence of a rational benchmark in the booming real estate industry was long felt.

“The introduction of Residex by NHB is a step in the right direction. The requirement to monitor the movement of value of the assets in the real estate will be beneficial for all- builders, buyers, home finance industry as well as the government and policy makers,” he said.

Most importantly, the buyers can now interpret the indices and judge the demand, price movements and other parameters, thus optimise their planning and decision-making process, he added.



Realty Index has headroom for growth

BSE launched the index this week to track prices of the real estate stocks, reports Shiv Kumar

Punters heralded the advent of the BSE Realty Index this week by taking the newborn to a 43 point high on the very first day of trading.

Some of the biggest names in the real estate industry, which hit the limelight with IPOs in recent times are the mainstay of the BSE Realty Index. DLF and Unitech have 35.94 per cent and 31.57 per cent weightage in the Realty Index accounting for the chunk of this sector. Indiabulls Real Estate comes a distant third with a weightage of 13.94 per cent.

Launching the new index, the Bombay Stock Exchange said the index would track price movements of real estate stocks.

“The base year for the index is set at 2005 and the base index value is 1,000. A total of 11 companies, including DLF, Unitech, Indiabulls Real Estate, Parsvnath Developers, Ansal Properties, Mahindra Gesco Developers and Sobha Developers are constituents of the index,” BSE said in its statement.

In its statement, the BSE noted that the demand for real estate in the country, both residential and commercial, had registered a strong growth over the past three years and Indian cities have become attractive investment destinations for international real estate players.

“The market capitalisation of the real estate sector in India is just 4.2 per cent of the total, well below the global norm of approximately 15 per cent, reflecting the headroom available for growth of this sector,” BSE said.



Housing index under construction

RBI moots a norm to study the progress of infrastructure in the housing sector, says SC Dhall

Due to boom in housing sector - the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) plans to create “Housing Statistical Index”. This will help to study the progress in the housing sector.

In India, the data on housing sector is not maintained property by both borrowers and lenders, providing dissimilar information. The value of the property is not declared properly and some persons forge documents to deceive banks.

After the deregulation of interest, various public/ private sector banks and financial institutions have started charging different rates of interest for housing, thus creating problems and confusion for the general public. The government is also not happy with the way the housing sector is moving.

The RBI’s Housing Stat Index will help to gauge the level of construction activity in the country that further will help policy makers and formulators.

Deputy governor RBI Rakesh Mohan says the USA has already developed such an index to watch the development in this area. He said that RBI wants to be on a firm ground statistically. This will further help the RBI to track the number of houses built on a regular basis as the data available with the local authorities is limited. With the change in banking regulation and with Basel II in place, the RBI needs to use much more statistics for risk analysis in the area of banking regulations and innovations.

While the RBI's proposed housing index will gauge the level of construction activity in the country, which will track the number of houses built on a regular basis as housing sector in the country is disorganised, Residex is the first price index for the housing prices in the country.

Residex has taken a representative sample of transaction prices covering LIG, MIG and HIG houses categories. It will also help in estimating the personal wealth of an individual for collateral security.

— The writer is a senior banker



Ugly underbelly

Jupinderjit Singh talks about the crime and the darker side

Making profit or suffering losses is a part of the game in real estate. At times greed or fear of losses as well as selfishness in seeking more share than others brings out the darker side in the trade that leads many to take lives of their blood relatives or dear friends just to make more profit, which otherwise might have been shared.

This side has taken an epidemic form in the industrial cities like Ludhiana, Jalandhar and Amritsar where the fast expanding cities engulf village land thus escalating prices within a short period of time. The same happens at select places in the city which get more developed or are situated near an upcoming development project.

In Ludhiana, Tejinder Kaur Grewal, owner of a house in Shastri Nagar was caught for hiring professional killers to murder two tenant brothers who lived in a portion of her house. An over 50-year-old woman, she was happy with the rent of her house till few years ago. The property witnessed over the last three years catapulted the land price from just a few lakhs to over a crore. With the house set to fetch a price of Rs 1 crore, she could easily pay Rs 5.50 lakh to the contract killers.

This reminded this correspondent of the gory murder of a farmer in Sadarpura village on Jagraon -Jalandhar highway, who along with two field workers killed his father. The youth, aged 20, wanted to sell off 6 acre of land whose price had suddenly skyrocketed after the construction of a bridge over Sutlej river, thus connecting Jagraon with Jalandhar. The victim wanted to lead a posh life, weaving dreams of selling property. The bridge had multiplied the price from couple of lakhs per acre to over 10 lakh.

A man killed his brother near Beas town this week after a dispute over property division brought them at loggerheads.

All these cases indicate property value rise, sharing as well as devaluing of land prices as a ticking time bomb, which owing to a minor fluctuation could lead to bloodshed any moment. A recent survey by the Ludhiana Police identified many villages, areas along the upcoming malls, and along highways as the potential property related crime prone sites. Of those Gill and Daad village top the list.

The two villages are an apt example of the problem. Villagers have made fast buck after the sudden land boom over the last two years. As soon as the expanding city reached the two villages, prices skyrocketed within no time. At least four property related murders have taken place in these villages.

Land developers contributed immensely in the sudden rise by buying land at any rate the farmers sought. As disputes arose, developers started keeping musclemen, mainly college going youth for security of the land or to possess the disputed area.

These youths remained free all the day with no work other than to keep guard. They started bullying others and influencing local level enmities between other youth. At one such SOS call by a friendly villager, they stormed a house in nearby Rania village and killed a college student. One of their accomplices also died in the shoot out. Situation had become so volatile in Gill and surrounding villages that the then SSP A S Rai posted cops round the clock their to maintain law and order.

“It was a routine minor conflict between two college students. It assumed such big proportion with the involvement of the musclemen of a local coloniser,” said the former SSP A S Rai.

He said due to real estate boom prices witnessed an overnight shoot up. “A land worth few lakhs fetched more than a crore. Then, the common village land was always available for grabbing. This gave rise to a number of clashes and law-order trouble.

Rai feels that there was a need for a mechanism to regulate real estate, “The rise and fall has to be gradual, not a sudden one, which even pitches blood relatives against each other over greed.

Daad village as also witnessed two murders in property related crime. The village was in headlines wit a VVIP like BIS Chahal arrested for alleged land grabbing attempt in the village.

If cases of violence are galore, disputes over land agreement violation after fluctuating real estate price, landlord -tenant conflict over sudden eviction notices and complaint against land developers for not keeping the promise of facilities are also increasing.

There are umpteen cases with the police where either seller or buyer has gone back on the sale deed. The reason for the seller was that the prices had increased much more than what he agreed in the sale deed executed, say two months ago. In this case, the buyer approaches the police or the court causing law and order problem on one hand and a blockade in development once the case goes sub judice.

The buyer goes back from the agreement in case there was a sudden fall in the prices. In most of the cases, the situation doesn’t get violent as the buyer prefers forgetting the advance payment he had made. This happened in case of Halwara and Laddowal International Airport projects, which ended with a bang.

The third kind of major property related crimes are the disputes relates to multiple selling of the same piece of land. The South City Development Scheme witnessed this major problem. At one time, as many as 75 FIRs were lodged by different parties over one dispute or the another. Many disputes were later solved but some still remain.

Interestingly, C K Singh a pathologist and a relative of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was also a victim of the cheating when he discovered the lot given to him was sold to another person also.

SSP R K Jaiswal feels the role of the police in such crimes limits to taking preventive steps rather than remedial ones, “ The main forum are civil cases but owing to long and lengthy procedure, people take short cuts by applying criminal methods. The police comes only when the crime has taken place.”

The sudden windfall in property deal leads to funny situations also. A number of farmers of Lalton village arrived with empty cement bags at registry office to receive crores as payment from the buyer. In Jagraon, a man, who had sold few acres for Rs 1 crore again used empty cement bags to take away the cash. He was caught by the police on the suspicion of carrying so much cash in such a manner. He was later handed over to the income tax department and lost more than Rs 50 lakh. 



Estate talk
Unitech aims apartments at high networth individuals
R. Suryamurthy

India’s leading real estate developer stunned the nation when it bagged the largest land deal in the country for a record sum of Rs 1,582 crore at Noida. Now it plans to come up with an imposing piece of architecture that will boost the skyline to offer upscale residential homes overlooking a Greg Norman signature golf course.

The Grande project, Unitech claims, would be the most sought after address in the country. An ultra-luxury residential project spread over 347 acres in South of Delhi, it is envisioned as Asia’s most luxurious residential project.

It will be most unique and special in architecture as it involves 10 international architectural experts and design consultants who will together create a dynamic, elegant residential complex.

Managing Director of Unitech Sanjay Chandra says: “The Grande redefines prestige, opulence and an ultra-luxurious lifestyle that one can only imagine of. With this landmark project, we are creating an address to aspire for.”

He said the unique feature of the Grande’s majestic skyline would be the eight iconic towers and four gateway towers, which will have between 36 and 45 floors. The buildings in the vicinity have floors in the range of 15 to 18.

Every tower in the project will be unique and in an effort to bring further uniqueness, style and a touch of competitive edge to the project, Unitech has allotted the towers to different firms for designing.

He said each renowned international architectural firm would design a pair of iconic towers. This is expected to bring out the best contemporary designs from the firms as each may try to outdo the other.

Each tower will have a range of apartments, including duplex and penthouses, overlooking the Greg Norman Signature Golf Course, in a supremely aesthetic and architecturally superior setting.

He said another first in architecture, personal plunge pools in select apartments, would add to the opulence of these towers. With over 100 acres of fascinating and diversified landscaping encompassing 12 theme gardens, the Grande will fulfil the desire of those who want to live in serene natural surroundings.

Unitech will invest Rs 5,500 crore in the project, which will hold 5,300 units, including apartments, duplexes and penthouses.

Chandra said: “I think this will take us to a totally different level. This is a project of true international scale, which hasn't been done in many countries. We expect a revenue of about Rs 15,000 crore over the next seven to eight years."

Unitech plans to develop this land in four phases over the next seven to eight years. Out of the 670 units planned for the first phase, over 25 per cent has already been sold.

Although most of the buyers are high networth individuals and NRIs, Unitech plans to target the corporate sector as well. The size of the apartments will vary between 2,200 and 5,500 sq feet. The apartments sell for Rs 7,700 a square foot but Unitech expects prices to increase as the project progresses.

He said the company expects revenues to grow 60 per cent in 2007-08 and will borrow between Rs 2,000 and Rs 3,000 crore in the current fiscal from domestic markets to fund various projects. 



My home, my style

Blend colour and fabric to generate a new look, suggests Smriti Sharma

Everyone pines to have a dream home decorated in a way that reflects inner thoughts. For that one needs to choose colours and themes that are a fine mix of contemporary design and trendy style.

Whether you are decorating a single room or the house as a whole, you need to cultivate a decorating style of your own.

With so many products in the market, buyers travelling around the globe and shoppers expecting more for their homes, consumers have an infinite array of products, finishes, colours, decorative elements and prices available. Sky is the limit and there is no reason for anyone to be stuck with a home decorating scheme that doesn’t capture unique fashion and interests.

To start with, one needs to focus on the basics. Identify taste of decoration. It can be casual, formal, traditional or contemporary, depending upon the individual’s choice.

Next comes choosing the right colour. Aashi, a freelance interior decorator in Mohali, makes a calculation. “Blues and greens are making a comeback in 2007. We can see them in lighting, throws and decorative accessories. Neutrals are back as the colour of choice.”

After the choice of colour, comes the selection of furniture. This year, the materials in focus are teakwood, mahogany, mango, walnut, cherrywood and bamboo. Apart from the basic shapes and structures in furniture items, there are diamond patterns for dining tables, coffee tables and consoles to name a few, says Manya, a city-based interior decorator.

Mirror furniture, such as chests, nestling tables with jewellery inspired hardware are in vogue. Traditional brass is used in hardware and is often seen on furniture ends. Wood-finished floorings gel well with such furniture.

The next obvious step to be followed is the choice of apt fabric to with the colour scheme and furniture. When it comes to fabric, glamour is the word. Velvet, silk, brocade and satin, alone or mixed, make a perfect style statement on the bed, sofas and accessories. Bed linens and tabletops have velvet, metallic and even silk “appliqués” work on them.

For a complete glamorised look, go in for curtains made with silk, velvet or brocade else go in for cotton or net curtains with patchwork.

After all this, all that is left to be done is to add a dab of accessories that go with home decor. Lampshades, duvet covers, cushions, pillows can give that perfect look to your house. Just follow the mantra of accessorising, ‘smaller is bigger and elegant is in’.

All in all, there is more creativity and innovations that do the trick. The idea is to create the right look using mix and match with easily available options at hand. Remember to select what is right for your home.



Don’t stretch Vaastu too far

Jagvir Goyal shares some tips that can make a builder’s job easy

Guidelines on many important activities of house construction such as purchase of plot, foundations, brickwork, shuttering, reinforcement, RMC etc have been given under this column. There are some finer points caring for which may pay dividends to the house builder. Here are a few of them:

Building layout

Save the cost by choosing the right layout of your house. For a given plinth area, cost of a house or building will be least when its perimeter is least. So a square building will have lesser cost than a rectangular or an irregular building. Also, lesser is the number of offsets, lesser will be the cost. If you are not that particular about the shape or elevation of the building, tell your architect or engineer to save here. Your architect can still give a beautiful plan and elevation.

Plinth area rate

Per square foot cost of a building with a larger plan area is lesser than that of a building with lesser plan area. This is because the cost of walls is nearly the same in both type of buildings and it gets divided by a larger area in a large building. Save on this account wherever possible. Also, the circulation area should be planned carefully as it increases cost. Lesser the percentage of circular area to total plan area, lesser the buildings cost.

Storey height

Increase in the storey height of a building increases the cost. It is obvious that with the increase in height of walls, quantity of masonry work also increases. But this is not the only reason behind increase in cost. Increased height increases the load of walls on slabs and beams and on foundations, making them thicker, wider and heavier. Thus choose an optimum storey height. A 10 feet height for a storey is good enough.

Doors & windows

Present trend is of choosing jumbo-sized windows. This is, however, not good structurally, economically and from safety point of view. Earthquake resistant design demands lesser size of openings in the walls. Also, bigger the size of doors and windows in a building, higher the cost. These days, cost of masonry and plastering is much less than the cost of woodwork, its painting or polishing. Thus choose optimum-sized doors and windows. Though certain minimum sizes of doors are essential for movement of occupants, furniture and the luggage, avoid unnecessarily bigger sizes. Similarly keep the windows and ventilators of optimum sizes to have good ventilation and natural light and avoid oversized windows. Mega-sized windows popular these days can be afforded only if low cost is not a consideration.

Old ‘science’

Vaastu shastra was written when there were no electricity or modern gadgets available. It was linked to religion and prosperity to make people follow it. Otherwise, its sole purpose was to provide good ventilation, natural light and free movement in a house. That’s why Vaastu asks to leave a courtyard at the centre of the house, which was a requirement in the ancient times but not now. As the plots these days are planned back to back, facing all directions, choosing an east or north-facing plot may not always be possible. So hire a good architect to plan your house for good ventilation and natural light. However you may induct good points from Vaastu wherever possible, without affecting the architecture.


Here are some Vaastu tips. Use them to the extent possible and that’s enough. Perform bhoomipujan in northeast or centre of the plot. This you can always do. Begin excavation from northwest side and laying of the foundation from southwest side. This too could be followed easily. So far so good. Further, try to leave more space around the house on north and east sides and less on south and west sides. Keep garage on the northwest or southeast corner. Keep Puja room in the northeast corner of house. In it, keep the deity facing west. Keep bedrooms in southwest or southeast direction. Keep bathrooms in southwest and kitchen in southeast corner. Keep dining room in the west and study room between the west and southwest. Keep the staircase in such a way that the steps lead you from east to west or from north to south but not in reverse directions. Keep total number of doors and windows at each floor as even not odd. Following all these rules may be a wonder in itself. However your architect may certainly strike a harmony between this philosophy and the new rules of planning to generate a beautiful plan. Believe in him.

Avoid thumb rules

Thumb rules are outcome of people’s experience and don’t give accurate or economical design of the buildings. Mostly, these result in extra expenditure. Better is to get the building designed properly from a structural engineer. Even in structural design manuals, there are many methods to design a building. All methods are safe when followed correctly. So ask your structural engineer to choose an economical design method. Limit state design method is better and economical and prefer to have the design done by this method.

Daily diary

Always maintain a daily diary for your house. Divide it into five parts. In the first part, enter all supplies in tabulated form. Major items like cement, steel, wood, bricks etc and small items like CI fittings get controlled through it. In second part, enter date wise record of work done. In third part, enter the dates of casting of RCC items and work out the dates up to which curing of the same is to be done and the dates on which shuttering is to be removed. This part will act as a ready reckoner to control the quality and safety of RCC work. In fourth part, note the datewise expenditure and payments made to the contractors and suppliers. In the fifth part, make miscellaneous notes like names, addresses, contact numbers of suppliers and other useful information. As the house progresses, this diary will become a highly precious reference and record book for you.

Happy building!!

The writer is SE (civil), PSEB. He can be reached through



TAX tips
Add amount spent on registration towards cost of plot
By S.C. Vasudeva

Q. I have purchased a plot of land recently in my own name. However, the construction thereon would take two to three years time. I would be arranging funds for construction out of my own sources as well as by obtaining a loan from a bank. I have two questions in this regard:

a) Whether I would be entitled to claim deduction in respect of interest on amount borrowed for the acquisition of the plot?

b) I have spent about Rs 66,000 on registration and other similar charges. Will the above amount of expenditure be allowed as deduction against my salary income or income from house property?

— F.C. Kainth, Nawanshahr

A. The answer to your queries are:

a) The interest paid in respect of the borrowings made for the purpose of acquiring a plot of land is not deductible against any income.

b) The amount spent on registration is not allowable as deduction against any head of income. However, the same would be added to the cost of the plot purchased by you.

Land and building

Q. I purchased a piece of land in 2000. However, I constructed a residential house thereon in 2006. The same is under my occupation currently. I have got an immigration visa to the UK and therefore, intend to sell the house and put all my resources in fixed deposits and mutual funds. The house would be sold most likely by the end of this year. Will the gain arising on such transactions be treated as a long-term or a short-term one?

— R.S. Grewal, Phillaur

A. On the basis of the facts given in the query, in this case the land would be treated as a long-term capital asset and the super structure i.e. building as a short-term capital asset. The Calcutta Bench of the Tribunal has held in one of the cases that land is an independent and identifiable capital asset and would remain so even after the construction of the building thereon. Accordingly, the capital gain will have to be computed separately for land as well as the building. The above view of the Calcutta Bench of the Tribunal stands accepted by Madras High Court in 236ITR51.

Lock-in period

Q. I have recently inherited a property in India. I am settled in the UK and not likely to get back to India. I would, therefore, like to sell the house and remit the proceeds to UK. Is it possible to do so?

— V.K. Nayar, Gurgaon

A. There is no difficulty in remitting the proceeds to the UK in respect of the sale proceeds of the inherited property. You can sell the house and repatriate the money abroad after payment of due tax. Presently, there is no lock-in period for such repatriation.

Wealth tax

Q. I understand wealth tax is chargeable in case the total net wealth of a person is more than Rs 15 lakh. However, I am not aware which of the assets would be covered for the purposes of levy to wealth tax. Could you please let me know?

— A.S. Bhatia, Ludhiana

A. Wealth-tax is chargeable only on assets specified in Section 2(ea) of Wealth-tax Act, 1957. The assets specified in said section are:

(a) Any guest house; residential house; commercial property; and/or farm house situated within 25 km from the local limits of any municipality or a cantonment board; but excluding:

(1) a house meant exclusively for residential purposes and which is allotted by a company to an employee or an officer or a director who is in whole-time employment, having gross annual salary of less than Rs.5,00,000,

(2) any residential house forming part of stock-in-trade,

(3) any house for commercial purposes (i.e., commercial property) which forms part of stock-in-trade.

(4) any house which is occupied by the assessee for the purposes of any business or profession carried on by him,

(5) any residential property that has been let out for a minimum period of 300 days in the previous year; and

(6) any property in the nature of commercial establishments or complexes;

(b) Motor cars, other than those used in assessee’s hiring business or used as stock-in-trade;

(c) Jewellery, bullion, and furniture, utensils or any other article made wholly partly of gold, silver, platinum or any other precious metal or any alloy containing one or more of such precious metals, other than those used as stock-in-trade by the assessee;

(d) Yachts, boats and aircraft, other than those used by the assessee for commercial purposes;

(e) Urban land, being situated in any area, within the jurisdiction of a municipality or a cantonment board which has a population of not less than 10,000; or within 8 km from the local limits of such municipality or a cantonment board, as the Central Government may notify.

However, urban land shall not include;

(1) land on which construction of a building is not permissible under any law or the land on which building is constructed with the approval of the appropriate authority,

(2) any unused land held by the assessee for industrial purposes for a period of two years from the date of its acquisition by him, and

(3) any land held by the assessee as stock-in-trade for a period of 10 years from the date of acquisition by him;

(f) Cash in hand, in excess of Rs 50,000, of individuals and Hindu undivided families and in the case of other persons any amount not recorded in the books of account.

The assets mentioned above are chargeable to wealth tax without any exemption. Other assets such as shares, debentures, deposits, units, loans advanced, etc are not liable to wealth-tax.

Unrealised rent

Q. I had claimed a deduction of Rs 50,000 on account of unrealised rent pertaining to the previous year 1998-99 and the same was allowed by the assessing officer. In December 2006, I received a sum of Rs 30,000 out of such unrealised rent. What would be the position of taxation with regard to the said amount of Rs 30,000? I may add that the house in respect of the unrealised rent was sold by me two years back?

— Rohit Sharma, Jalandhar

A. According to the provisions of the Section 25A of the Income-tax Act, 1961 (the Act), the amount of Rs 30,000 recovered from the defaulting tenant would be chargeable to tax as income under the head “income from house property” (without allowing any deduction for house tax, interest and statutory allowance of 30 per cent of annual value) in the year of recovery i.e. previous year 2006-07 relevant to the assessment year 2007-08. The above amount would be taxable as income from house property even if you were not the owner of such property in the year of assessment.

The writer can be contacted at



Buzz on Bourses

REBI plans tollfree helpline

Hyderabad: Real Estate Bank International (REBI), a Bangalore-based end-to-end service provider in the real estate sector, has announced plans to invest Rs 250 million next year to expand its operations in India and abroad. Lakshmi Narayanan, president and CEO, REBI, told a news conference that the company would expand its operations in India and countries like Sri Lanka, US, UAE, Singapore, Malaysia and Australia. REBI, which already has its presence in Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu, plans to start operations in Andhra Pradesh and other states, will set up 3,000 franchises all over the country in the next three years. REBI also plans to launch India’s first real estate tollfree helpline soon. — IANS

Hudco to help Tamil Nadu

Chennai: The Tamil Nadu government has appointed Housing and Urban Development Corporation (Hudco), a premier techno-financing institution in the country, as consultant to prepare a tourism master plan for the state. “The masterplan will identify the tourism potential in the state and suggest ways and means to market it. It would also formulate projects for the development of infrastructure,” state tourism department officials said here. — UNI

DMC pact with SADM Tech

New Delhi: Real estate developer DMC International Ltd has said it has entered into a joint venture agreement with Delhi-based SADM Technology Pvt Ltd for development of an IT tower. The tower will be used for providing IT and IT-enabled services spread over two lakh sq ft area in Gurgaon. The project is expected to be completed within a period of two years, a statement said. — UNI

Pergo Exotic flooring

New Delhi: Pergo has launched its latest range of exquisite flooring, Pergo Exotic, equipped with a new and improved compact sound block technology. According to the company, this new underlay material not only reduces the sound but also has an improved drum sound. Test results from certified test institutes in Germany, showed a considerable reduction of impact sound, making it ideal for heavy commercial and residential use. The Compact Sound Bloc makes it easier to cut planks while at the same time not allow sawdust to stick to the underlay. — TNS

Aerodrome centre launched

Amritsar: Ansal API launched a mall, Aerodrome Business and Shopping Centre, which would come up at a stone’s throw from the Rajasansi International Airport. The foundation of the project was laid here and it would be constructed in an area of 2.25 lakh square feet and the first three floors would be exclusively for retail shops and outlets, with a super market. With the expansion of the airport and the rise in the number of international flights, there has been an increase in the number of passengers arriving at Amritsar. The centre will also have a range of office spaces in ready to occupy and custom-built configurations. The top two floors of the five-floor centre will have a multi-star hotel, a spokesperson said. — TNS

Indian cos bid for Nepal airport

Kathmandu: Two Indian construction companies are in the fray for a project to improve Nepal’s lone international airport in Kathmandu. New Delhi’s Ircon International Limited and an Indo-Nepal joint venture between Mumbai’s Valecha Engineering Ltd and local partner YP Construction are among the six companies that have qualified to bid for the runway and taxiway overlay work at Tribhuvan International Airport. The bidding process is expected to take about two-and-a-half months. The Indian companies will face stiff competition from the Chinese. The other four competitors are Sino-Nepal joint ventures. — IANS

SEZ in Haryana

Mumbai: Engineering solutions provider IST Ltd has said it will set up an IT/ITeS special economic zone (SEZ), spread over an area of 11.58 hectares, at Dundahera in Haryana. The company would set up SEZ through its wholly owned subsidiary, Gurgaon Infospace Ltd, IST said in a filing to the BSE. IST has received approval from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry for the zone, it added. — PTI