Tuesday October 26, 2021

FBR asked to examine future correspondence before sending to FTO Secretariat

September 22, 2021

ISLAMABAD: The Federal Tax Ombudsman (FTO) has expressed his displeasure over the behaviour of FBR chief commissioners and chief collectors for not examining the correspondence made by their subordinate offices with the FTO Secretariat and just acting as a forwarding post.

The chief commissioners/chief collectors, being the supervisory officers of field formations, are always kept in loop while conducting proceedings under the Federal Tax Ombudsman Ordinance, 2000 (FTO Ordinance) and correspondence with the FBR. Although, response from the said formations is always routed through the offices of concerned chief commissioners/chief collectors/collectors yet it has been observed with great concern by the federal tax ombudsman that while corresponding with the FTO Secretariat and its regional offices, the chief commissioners/chief collectors/collectors mostly act as the forwarding post whereby only a stereotype covering letter is deemed sufficient.

Despite the fact that the chief commissioners Inland Revenue have been designated by FBR as IR-Ombudspersons, yet not a single case has surfaced so far to show that the FBR’s decision is being implemented in letter and spirit.

At FBR HQs and RTOs/CTOs/LTOs, it was also noted that there is no archiving of the FTO’s decisions which had already gained finality. New cases with identical facts and issues are not treated on the basis of already adjudged, upheld and implemented decisions.

Repeatedly, reliance is placed on decisions overruled by the president of Pakistan. Therefore, there is a need to clearly spell out responsibilities and duties of the above-mentioned supervisory officers for effective control on behalf of the chairman FBR, and to get the Revenue Division’s instructions implemented in letter and spirit.

The federal tax ombudsman emphasised that this will also help in checking the corrupt officers posted in various field formations. With this in view, the FBR was requested to ensure all future correspondence made by the chief commissioners/collectors with reference to the FTO Ordinance, is properly examined by their respective offices before transmission to the FTO secretariat.