ISLAMABAD: The Government is considering enhancing powers of the Director General of Intelligence & Investigation Inland Revenue (IR) to analyze and investigate Suspicious Transaction Reports (STR) communicated by banks to Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU) of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP). Sources told Customs Today that the FBR is expected to issue a notification following approval by the Ministry of Finance.
The function of analyzing and investigating suspicious transaction reports communicated by banking companies to FMU, which in turn is transmitted to FBR, at present, vests with Directorate General of Intelligence and Investigation Customs. The FBR has proposed that Directorate General of Intelligence and Investigation IR may also be assigned this function in respect of Inland Revenue taxes. In this way, both the Directorate General of Intelligence and Investigation Customs and Directorate General of Intelligence and Investigation IR would be empowered to analyze and investigate STRs.
Sources said the initiative has been taken by Director General I&I IR Haroon Tareen to expand the investigation of the agency by seeking the data of STRs for investigations. It was further revealed that the information based on suspicious transaction reporting pertains primarily to the business community who does not declare true results while filing statements of assets and liabilities. The aforesaid information can be better utilized by the said Directorate General, being better equipped in dealing with issues related to tax fraud. Cases of terrorist financing, drug dealing and money laundering that fall within the jurisdiction of FIA, due to element of criminality can be filtered and passed on to FIA after the information is scanned by Directorate General of Intelligence and Investigation IR.
Earlier, Director General I&I IR Haroon Tareen wanted to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the State Bank of Pakistan for sharing information pertaining to STRs to unearth tax frauds crimes. Now it seems that Director General I&I IR would achieve this objective through issuance of a notification without signing any MoU.