PM Office mulls amnesty plan for tax evaders

Published: August 26, 2019
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ISLAMABAD: The Prime Minister Office has directed the Ministry of Finance and the Federal Board of Revenue to submit a report based on the data analysis by the National Database and Registration Authority for an amnesty scheme-like plan for citizens who do not pay tax or pay less tax.

However, FBR (Expenses) Deputy Secretary Iftikhar Ahmed Janjua denied such a development, saying neither a new tax amnesty scheme was being introduced nor any such scheme was in the making.
The PMDU Wing of the PM Office had sought a feasibility report on an amnesty scheme-like plan based on NADRA’s data analysis about the citizens paying no or less taxes.

A letter seeking a report by July 31 was received on July 29. The report could not be compiled in a few days. However, it would be sent soon. “But it is not about any new amnesty scheme,” said Janjua.

However, the sources in the Ministry of Finance said it was about the asset declaration scheme that was introduced in June by the government to give legal status to the illegal assets as the PMDU Wing had assigned the task to the finance and interior ministries and FBR to prepare an implementable plan.

Sources said since all the organisations had to update about the implementation of the tasks assigned by the PMDU Wing through task management system and the Pakistan citizen portal, the scheme had already been introduced but a compliance report was yet to be submitted and old status appeared in the portal, thus a report had been sought.

However, according to the document available with The Express Tribune, the letter from the PM Office stated that the report had not been received from Ministry of Finance nor the FBR.

The NADRA chairman already informed that a special portal was introduced on June 21, 2019 for the success of the asset declaration scheme by the government and the portal had the details of expenses and assets of the people.

In addition to that, a letter signed by FBR’s Janjua to the FBR chairman stated that a letter had been received from the PM Office in which a report had been sought on the task assigned with reference No T3704C.

Janjua said in his letter that a report was sought by July 31.
Janjua told The Express Tribune that it was not about any new amnesty scheme.

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