Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain has said levying any additional taxes is akin to asking people to commit suicide.
While talking to members of the party’s coordination committee, federal and provincial ministers, and parliamentarians he said that the salaried class will be directly hit by the imposition of a flood tax, reformed GST and additional property tax in Sindh, a press release issued by the party said.
Hussain reiterated that instead of imposing new taxes, the government should bring the agricultural income under tax net, take action against tax evaders and cut non-developmental expenses. He warned that the new taxes will bring in their wake a wave of price hikes.
Hussain said that everyone knew that the landed aristocracy, businessmen, politicians and bureaucrats either did not pay any tax at all or cause huge loss to the national exchequer by evading taxes. He said the privileged class in the country paid only two per cent of the total tax collected in the country.
The party chief added that the government can save billions of rupees by cutting lavish expenses of the president, prime minister and governor houses, by reducing non-developmental expenses and earn up to two to three thousand billion rupees by widening the tax net
He said that the government was spending billions of rupees in support of Pakistan Steel Mills, railways and PIA, whereas these institutions are falling apart due to massive corruption and maladministration. Referring to the soaring prices of sugar, Hussain said that the Supreme Court had fixed Rs40 per kg as the price of the sweetener but the order of the apex court was not implemented.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 15th, 2010.
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