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FTO seeks action against non-filer officials

FTO seeks action against non-filer officials

ISLAMABAD: The Federal Tax Ombudsman (FTO) has asked the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) to take action against its officers who have failed to submit their tax returns/declaration of assets.

The FTO issued the directives while taking up a petition filed by a citizen Waheed Shahzad Butt under Freedom of Information Ordinance, 2002.

On the other hand, the FBR has termed it a very sensitive issue and shows reluctance to provide particulars of IRS/PCS officials who have failed to submit their tax returns/declaration of assets within time. It is to be recalled that the FBR published the names of some IRS/PCS officials who have failed to submit their assets/income declarations.

Petitioner Waheed Shahzad Butt is of the view that the federal government is unable to ensure its taxation measures within the revenue collecting agency (FBR) and following footsteps of some parliamentarians, many FBR officers have not submitted declarations of income/assets since many years while it is mandatory for every government servant to submit income/assets declaration.

According to the petitioner, he had written a letter to the FBR Facilitation and Taxpayer Education (FATE) Member, requesting for provision of certain data in light of Section 12 of the Freedom of Information Ordinance, 2002. The FBR is paying no heed to entertain applications by general public under the Freedom of Information Ordinance, 2002, therefore, on silence from the FBR, he lodged a complaint before the FTO under Freedom of Information Ordinance, 2002.

Waheed further added that FBR officers, who themselves did not abide by the income tax law had also started issuing non-filing of returns notices with threat of penalties to the taxpayers/citizens. After the amendments made in the Income Tax Ordinance, 2001 vide Finance Act, 2013 taxpayers having an income of Rs1,000,000 and above have to file income tax returns along with wealth statements for tax year 2013. However, the FBR is unable to ensure its taxation measures within the department.

First, number of IRS/PCS officers who have fulfilled the conditions prescribed under Para 2 of Circular No 1, C No 1(4)M(HRM)/2012, dated July 23, 2012 up to year ended June 6? Secondly, number and names of IRS/PCS officers against whom Para 12 of Government Servants (Conduct Rules, 1964) read with Sl. No 23-A, chapter 9 titled Conduct, Efficiency & Discipline of Esta Code 2010 was invoked as Government Servant?