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Friday March 01, 2024

PRAL case: Why FBR did not develop software, asks Supreme Court

The court summoned the FBR chairman and Attorney General for Pakistan on the next date of hearing

By Our Correspondent
January 10, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court (SC) on Thursday summoned the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) chairman and Attorney General in a case pertaining to the Pakistan Revenue Automation Private Limited (PRAL). A three-member bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed heard the appeal of Pakistan Revenue Automation Private Limited against the decision of the high court.

The court summoned the FBR chairman and Attorney General for Pakistan on the next date of hearing. The court also sought a detailed report from the FBR and Pakistan Revenue Automation Limited within one month.

During the course of proceedings, the chief justice questioned as to why the Pakistan Revenue Automation Private Limited was not made a department instead of making it a private company.

He further asked as to why the FBR did not design software itself. The FBR counsel argued that the company and not the government is paying all the employees working in the company. He informed that the PRAL provides the software to the FBR after preparing it.

The counsel further informed that company only designs the software and then FBR enters data in it. Justice Ijazul Hassan, another member of the bench, remarked, “You are paying Rs1300,000 to a man deserving salary of Rs150,000.”

The judge further observed that they could not know about the 1,700 containers of ISF till today. It is to recall that the Supreme Court had taken a suo motu notice over the matter of ISF containers. The chief justice said that they wanted to take this matter to its logical end.

Meanwhile, the court clubbed the ISF container scheme case with the PRAL and issued notice to the FBR chairman and Attorney General and adjourned the hearing of the case for a month.