KARACHI: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) is examining income tax returns filed by businessmen for putting their name in the proposed taxpayers’ directory, scheduled to be published next month.
The revenue body is scanning through the returns of leading business leaders for the tax year 2013 to ascertain how much they contributed as individual to the economy.
The trade bodies are opposing the government plan regarding publishing tax directory, which will include the name, national tax number and tax paid during a year. The FBR has detected some of the business leaders paying very meagre amount as tax liability and in some cases the tax is collected from their source of withholding taxes. The government is currently compiling data of taxpayers for releasing the tax directory as the image of the country regarding paying taxes is not good.
The FBR has gathered data of parliamentarians of the National Assembly and also in contact with the provincial governments for obtaining details of members of provincial assemblies for including their names in the tax directory. Federal Finance Minister Ishaq Dar in a meeting with the business community in Karachi had rejected the reservations of the business community over tax directory.
Instead he has asked the businessmen to come up with rationale for opposing the plan. He however, said that in case the business community had logical reasons, then the details of parliamentarians would be shared with the public. The business community fears that by issuing tax directory the government will only provide opportunities to criminals who can easily assess the financial strength of various taxpayers and would threaten them to pay extortion money.