FTO directs FBR to evolve mechanism for timely issuance of tax exemption certificates

Federal Tax Ombudsman (FTO) Dr. Asif Mahmood Jah (Sitara-I-Imtiaz and Hilal-I-Imtiaz) has directed the Federal Board of Revenue to evolve a proper transparent mechanism for timely issuance of exemption certificates after the expiry of prescribed period to bona fide tax payers without any hassles.

Speaking at an awareness campaign meeting of industrialists and traders on Sunday at Model Steel Complex, Honorary Coordinator to FTO and former senior vice president Chamber of Commerce and Industry Meher Kashif Younis said that he brought to the notice of FTO the inordinate delay in issuance of exemption certificates and taxpayers are facing acute hardships due to delaying tactics of FBR officials. He said FTO was kind enough who immediately took suo motu notice and the issue was addressed.

Meher Kashif Younis further informed the members of the delegation that appeals of taxpayers were stuck up at appellate tribunals for years and FTO, taking prompt action on the complaints of business community, directed FBR to devise a monitoring mechanism for quick disposal of cases and tailor an effective policy and guidelines for all field formations.

Shahid Nazir and Mufti Yousaf Shah, members Executive Committee Lahore chambers were also present on the occasion.

He said in another historic and important decision, FTO stopped excessive tax deductions from low paid employees from their pays and wages across the country which provided relief to millions of beneficiaries. FTO further observed that low paid regular/adhoc/temporary and daily wagers did not fall under the category of tax deductions and were exempt.

Meher Kashif Younis said as a result of series of result-oriented awareness seminars, workshops and visit to all leading chambers besides trade bodies, now FTO secretariat received a record number  116.4 percent more complaints against FBR in first half of current calendar year than last  corresponding  year, which reflects the trust and confidence of taxpayers for immediate redressal of their genuine lawful grievances. However, he said 654 complaints were not maintainable and were turned down while 654 were withdrawn being bearing fruits.

He reiterated that FTO secretariat is open to all bona fide taxpayers and they ought to avail the facility without hiring any counsel. He said complaints can be filed in person, through emails, fax, WhatsApp or telephonically to any of the nearest FTO regional offices.