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FBR needs to improve IRIS to facilitate taxpayers

FBR needs to improve IRIS to facilitate taxpayers



ISLAMABAD: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) is required to overcome the inbuilt flaws in the software ‘IRIS’ which is being used to keep records of taxpayers and to facilitate them in filing their tax returns.

“IRIS software has serious inbuilt faults and it does not stop a filler of tax returns from filling fake or incorrect information in the tax returns, therefore it is up to the taxpayers either to submit correct or incorrect information aboutt the amount of paid tax or amount for refund claim,” a well placed official source told this scribe on Tuesday, saying that such system which were in practice and being used in other countries did not let the e-filler to submit wrong information in the tax return.

The source said that normally there were some five heads of source of income like income from property, salary, business, capital gain and interest income and every taxpayer was bound to mention the amount of tax deduction from telephone, salary, cash withdrawal, import or exports, real estate transfer, vehicle transfer while filling tax returns.

“But then it is up to the IRIS system to calculate the amount of deducted taxes filled by the taxpayer and then proceeds ahead, however, problem is that system does not bar anyone from filling whatever amount they may file and then file claim refund,” the source observed, adding that until return was properly checked nothing could be done because FBR had not capacity to check all the filled returns.

“Only one hundred officers have been delegated with responsibility to scrutinize and monitor up to one million filled tax returns,” the source added, saying that the said officers had to execute their duties without having data and amount of deducted taxes of any taxpayer as well as they didn’t have any mechanism for this practice.

The source said that in the modern and developed countries, tax-related IT systems were equipped with inbuilt checks to verify filled returns, to take the decision and not to allow any tax return move ahead with wrong or incorrect figures of paid taxes.

The source added that due to this inbuilt flaw a large number of taxpayers were unable to submit their tax returns and reason was that IRIS system was introduced for submitting tax returns without any trial or consultation with the tax professionals.