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March 18, 2015

211 properties sealed over tax default


March 18, 2015

THE property wing of Excise and Taxation (E&T) Punjab finally started a massive crackdown on property tax defaulters and sealed Sozo Water Park and 210 other properties for not paying their taxes, The News has learnt.
The E&T Punjab property wings initiated its crackdown from March 1, 2015 and so far 1,560 properties have been sealed by the Excise officials and Rs26 million recovered from tax defaulters.
Excise officials have been serving notices to the tax defaulters for past many months and finally they initiated a crackdown after the tax defaulters did not pay heed to any of the Excise notices.
The Excise officials also sealed the property of Kashmala Tariq, former senior politician of PML-Q and recovered Rs340,000 tax amount.
Presently, the crackdown was being carried out against the properties which exceed the tax amount more than Rs10,000 and in the second phase, operation would be carried out against the properties having tax less Rs10,000.
A senior official, on the condition of anonymity, told The News that there were several loopholes present in various sections of Excise and Taxation Punjab especially the recovery process of tax. He said the tax amount ratio is decided by the property tax inspectors who submit report after visiting the location physically.
Normally, if a person has a three-storey building and two are being used for commercial purpose and one for his own domestic use, then he could easily bribe the excise inspector and ask him to show his entire property in domestic usage so that he could pay domestic user tax instead of commercial tax.
By this practice, hundreds of properties records are being changed and their tax category is being decided by Excise inspectors, he added. He said that by using latest GSI technology and computerised system, this practice could easily be stopped and the tax revenue would be doubled in a very short time period.
Talking to The News, Director Property E&T Punjab Akram

Ashraf Gondal said tax defaulters were not paying heed to excise notices while they were served with warning notices several times.
He said it was the biggest crackdown on property tax defaulters in the provincial metropolis and it would continue until the recovery of last penny of tax default money.
On query, Akram Ashraf Gondal said that property tax evaluation system was being shifted to latest GSI system and survey of six major districts of Punjab had already been completed.
ADG Excise and Taxation Punjab Masood-ul-Haq while talking to The News said that the target of complete property tax recovery would be completed before the budget and all the property tax regions had been working efficiently. He said there were some laxities which were witnessed earlier in the tax recovery process but after the directives of Director General E&T Punjab, recovery process improved and no negligence would be tolerated in tax recovery process.

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