Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Act, is an Act of the Parliament of India that prohibits To address these deficiencies, several years later, in , the Govt of India introduced “Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Bill, “. Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Bill, Purpose: To prohibit holding property Benami and restrict the right to recover or transfer such property. THE BENAMI TRANSACTIONS (PROHIBITION) ACT, An Act to prohibit benami transactions and the right to recover properly held benami and for.

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The author discusses recent legal developments concerning benami properties.

Benami property in its literal sense means a property that does not have any name. It is a property that is held by some other person than the one who pays the consideration for such property. The transactions relating to benami property are known as benami transactions. India has witnessed benami transactions since a long time. In fact, the Federal Court in the case of Panjab Province v. Daulat Singh [1] has said: Benami properties are not easy to identify as they are usually entered into between relatives, friends, people having a fiduciary relationship, between landlord and tenant, employer and employee or other relationships where there exists an obligation to protect or a fear of some loss.

This limits the scope of litigation regarding benami transactions. Vide this act, all the benami transactions are prohibited and made an offence against the state. However, the act was criticised owing to the several loopholes it had. In fact, the act, as noted by the Second Administrative Reforms Commission in the yearwas never notified in the official gazette.

The government realised the loopholes in The Act and the need for a new legislation to overcome them. The government led by the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh introduced The Benami Transactions Prohibition Bill in the year before the parliament to repeal The Act, however, the bill was not passed by the parliament due to lack of support by the members of parliament.

After getting passed in both the houses of the parliament, the bill got converted into an Act on 11 th August and was enforced on 1 st November Defined under Section 4 9a benami transaction means any transaction which is transferred to or held by one person, but the consideration for it is paid by another.


The person who pays the consideration must have some benefit to gain from such transaction, whether immediately or in future. However, it is not a benami transaction, given that the sources of the money used to pay for the consideration is known, if the property is held by:.

Any transaction wherein the owner or the person who pays the consideration is fictitious, or wherein the owner is not aware of or denies the ownership of the property shall also be considered as a benami transaction.

Any property whether movable, immovable, tangible, intangible, or pertains to any right or asset or progibition document which has been a subject matter of a benami transaction is known as a benami property. The act provides for an initiating officer who shall start the proceedings against the benami transactions.

All About Benami Properties And Recent Legal Developments

He shall take prior permission of the Approving Authority regarding such proceedings. After the grant of permission, the initiating officer shall have the power to conduct or cause to be conducted any inquiry porhibition investigation in respect of any person, place, property, books of account documents, assets, or other documents, in respect of any other relevant matters under the amended Benami Act [5].

The Administrator has the power to receive and manage the property that is confiscated by the central government as a benami property. Adjudicating authority is provided for by this Act to hear the cases referred to it by the initiating officer and decide such cases within a period of one year.

All you need to know about benami transactions Bill

It shall consist of a chairperson and not less than two other members [8] who must have been a member of Indian Revenue Service or Indian Legal Service. All the authorities established transwctions this Act shall have same powers as are vested in a civil court for the purpose of [10]:. Any person aggrieved by the judgment of the Adjudicating Benaji may file an appeal with the Appellate Authority.

The Adjudicating Authority hransactions consist of a chairperson and at least two other members, one of whom shall be a Judicial member and the other an Administrative member and the bench shall sit in the National Capital Territory of Delhi. The chairperson must be tranasctions sitting or retired judge of a High Court who has completed at least five years of service. The Judicial Member must have been a Member of the Indian Legal Service and must have held the post of Additional Secretary or equivalent post in that Service, and an Administrative Member must have been a Member of the Indian Revenue Service and must have held the post of Chief Commissioner of Income-tax or equivalent post in that Service.


It shall have the powers of a civil court while trying matters with respect to [13]:. They shall follow the principles of natural justice and shall have the power to behami their own procedures.

Any property that is a subject matter to benami transaction shall be liable to be confiscated by the Central government.

The Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Bill, | PRS

These are then received, managed and disposed of by the administrators appointed under this act. The aim of the Benami Transactions Prohibition Act, was to prohibit benami transactions and punish those who participated in such transactions as they had become a method by the corrupt for tax evasion, land concentration and money laundering.

Due to various loopholes and no proper notification, it was a failed legislation and therefore new bill to repeal and replace The act was proposed before the parliament.

However, the bill failed to pass.

An effort was made again in the year to pass The Benami Transactions Prohibition Amendment Bill, which was successfully passed in both the houses and therefore, the Benami Transactions Prohibition Amendment Act, was enforced on 1 st November The act is clearer and has stringent punishments for offenders. It also tries to plug in the loopholes of the previous act. Log into your account. Login with your social accounts: Enforceability of Non-Disclosure Agreements in India.

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