LAHORE - Justice Mansoor Ali Shah of the Lahore High Court on Monday declined hearing a petition against luxury tax on houses situated in some housing schemes of the provincial capital.

When the petition was taken up on Monday, Justice Shah said that he couldn’t hear it due to personal reasons. The judge referred the petition to the chief justice to fix it before another appropriate bench for hearing.  Khawaja Muhammad Akram moved the petition through Barrister Mian Belal Ahmad and Barrister Qadir Bukhsh.

The petitioner has made federal government and Punjab Excise Department party in the writ petition.

The petitioner said that the Punjab government through Section 10 of The Punjab Finance Act, 2013 has imposed a newfangled one-off luxury tax on residential houses measuring two (2) Kanals and above which are located in a rating area specified as Category-A for the purposes of the Punjab Urban Immovable Property Tax Act, 1958.

He stated further that the impugned tax had been imposed on houses which are located in the Rating Area specified as Category-A of the Excise and Taxation Department which did not include the Cantonment area, EME Colony/Society, DHA, Defence RAYA, Lake View, Bahria Town and Jati Umra as these were considered as “rural areas” despite their modern atomic age.