SIALKOT

The target of tax collection in Sialkot and Gujranwala regions could not be met despite a month-long extension given by the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) in this regard.

According to the FBR officials, the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) had fixed a target of filing 73,000 tax returns in Gujranwala region, out of which only 1,600 tax returns had yet been submitted. Likewise, it had given a target of filing 65,000 tax returns in Sialkot region, out of which only 1,400 had so far been filed in the region, they added. The situation has exposed the poor performance of the FBR officials and staff who remained unable to motivate the taxpayers for submission of their tax returns. They also remained failed to bring more people under the tax net.

Most of the local taxpayers in both Gujranwala and Sialkot regions remained reluctant due to a complicated system of manual submission of tax returns and non-removal of the flaws by the government in the online submission system of the FBR. They also termed the sluggish attitude of the FBR officials towards tax payers another cause of low ratio of tax returns submission. FBR officials said that the extended deadline given for submission of maximum tax returns will end on October 31, 2015 and after which the FBR would bring all the non-taxpayers to task for not submitting their tax returns.

They said that the FBR teams were also compiling the final lists tax defaulters. The officials narrated that the FBR had issued 100,000 notices to the taxpayers urging them to ensure the early submission of their tax returns. However, they added, despite the hectic efforts, the local taxpayers were still not showing their interest in submitting their tax returns.

In 2014-15, the RTO Gujranwala had collected 40,000 tax returns while RTO Sialkot 33,000 tax returns, due to which the Islamabad-based senior bigwigs of Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) had expressed dismay and grave concern over the poor performance of the RTOs. They had advising them to jazz up the pace of motivating the taxpayers for submission of their tax returns. However, the officials remained unable to bring maximum people under the tax net.