Hyderabad: Notwithstanding the skyrocketing price of land for the past few months in the Vijayawada-Guntur-Tenali-Mangalagiri Urban Development Authority (VGTM UDA) region, an auction of plots in an upmarket locality of Guntur on Friday fetched the government only about half the market price.
The prices at which the plots were sold in Vidyanagar area of the city are an indication of possible black money transactions that most land deals witness in the region. While prices of private land in Vidyanagar are currently hovering anywhere around Rs 75,000 per sq yard, the UDA plots fetched an average of Rs 32,000 per sq yard. However, the authorities who conducted Friday's auction were satisfied with the revenues earned.
"It is not correct to say that we have sold out premium plots at low prices. As far as our calculations, the prices fetched in the auction are reasonable and good," UDA chairman Vanukuri Srinivasa Reddy told TOI.
The process of tender-cum-auction of around seven plots, with a total extent of 1,674 sq yards, was completed on Friday and the UDA earned revenue of Rs 5.41 crore from the sale of six plots. A 223 sq yard plot was sold at Rs 26,200 per sq yard and the plot that received the highest bid was sold at Rs 36,000 per sq yard. The rest of the plots received around Rs 30,000 to Rs 32,000 per sq yard.
Srinivasa Reddy explained that there were several issues involved in purchase of government land, including payment of higher registration charges. With the registration department's book value for Vidyanagar area being Rs10,000 per sq yard, the buyers will have to pay only stamp duty on the actual amounts bid in the auction, he said.
Another UDA official said that most private land buyers would pay the stamp duty only as per the book value and transact the remaining amount in black. "When it comes to doing business with government, there would be no scope for such grey route transactions," he said.