ISLAMABAD   -  As part of efforts to broaden the tax base, the government is introducing an online portal that contains information on bank accounts, properties, utilities and travel history of 53 million citizens.

The information will not be public but accessible to the relevant non-filers exclusively. The move actually aims at persuading the non-filers to avail the Assets Declaration Scheme, by letting them know that much of their assets and transaction details are already in authorities' knowledge.

"The results of data integration exercise shall be made online today. Data is [in fact] spread over two portals; Nadra and FBR website... Anyone can access their own data to check their details," said Minister of State for Revenue Hammad Azhar on his social media account.

Earlier, addressing a press conference, Hammad and Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Chairman Shabbar Zaidi said that the portal will not allow anyone to have access on the data of any other person. The FBR and National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) have finalised the arrangements in this regard.

They informed that FBR is going to give online access to non-filer citizens to the information about all the assets in their name that are on FBR record. However, the information could only be accessed by the concerned persons by providing their user names/CNIC, etc.

Minister Hammad Azhar said that previous two governments had not worked for broadening of tax base of the country. However, the incumbent government is taking measures to bring non-taxpayers into tax net, he added.

FBR chairman said that Nadra would provide data regarding non-taxpayers while FBR would take action against them for collecting taxes.

He stated that the last date for  Assets Declaration Scheme will not be extended from June 30, 2019, and FBR had already announced that it will take action against those who won't declare assets after June this year.

Therefore, he said, it is advised to the persons intending to avail this scheme to ensure that they declare all their assets and pay full amounts of taxes as reliable data about their undisclosed assets and expenditure is already available with FBR.

Data of industrial and commercial gas and electricity consumers from various DISCOs and gas distribution companies has been procured to identify the persons who are chargeable to tax but have not been paying their due taxes.

That FBR in collaboration with Nadra is providing access to the concerned persons (confidentially) for the transactions undertaken in the past in order to let the people know the transactions undertaken by them. This data will be available through secure channels from Nadra on demand subject to certain fee.

FBR is in contact with the land record authorities and district collectors with regard to shops and other commercial properties for identifying the business establishments in their respective areas.

The administrative setup is also being placed for operation of the Benami Law and it is expected to be fully operational from July 1, 2019.