IRS officers share deplorable working conditions, elitism in bureaucracy

LAHORE: A recent post by a group of income tax officers has been making rounds on social media. The post is addressed to the Prime Minister of Pakistan, and elaborates on the deplorable conditions under which Civil Superior Services (CSS) officers have to work in, the differences between various groups such as Pakistan Administrative Service (PAS), Police Service of Pakistan (PSP), Customs, Excise and Taxation, as well as Provincial Services.

The note goes on to explain the level of corruption between officers in the Inland Revenue Service (IRS) and the officers posted in public organizations such as WAPDA, CDA, LDA etc., It also highlights the differences in perks provided to officers of the same grade but in different groups.

The group of officers, which ended the note with the salutation “Voice of Income Tax/IRS officers” had the following to say.

“Do visit any Income Tax office of your choice (RTOs). You will find that CSS officers don’t have places to sit. You will also see the condition of the offices where a CSS officer works to collect revenue for the state.

“The concept of offices at District and Tehsil level is non-existing. Mostly, the offices are on rent with zero infrastructure/work force. The supporting staff is equally demoralized”.

“There are no privileges to grade 17/18 officers. No car and no accommodation. However, compare the privileges of other services (DMG, Police, Custom, Excise, and Provincial Services) of the same grades to Income Tax officers? For rationalization, also compare the perks of a Secretary in Provincial/Federal Secretariat with Commissioner Income Tax – a grade 20 officer.”

“Now, do compare the weakest authority and the highest contributions with zero infrastructural support of an Income Tax officer with the authority and relatively minimum contributions (if rationalized) from the officers of Custom, DMG, Police, Provincial Services and even Excise and Taxation to be justified to call an Income Tax officer as corrupt?”

“Corruption has no justification at all, but compare the corruption of officers posted in FATA, CDA, LDA, WAPDA, Police, Judiciary, C&W, DCs posted in districts (in the light of Transparency International Reports) with Income Tax officers to rationalize the magnitude of corruption. Analyze whether the officers of which service are involved in mega scams (Rental Power, Ashyana Scheme, QA Solar Park, etc) of the history of this country?

“Also compare the elitism in all these offices mentioned above and the environment in a Tax Office where the officer is put under dozens of accountability mechanisms”.

“Misperceptions, devoid of ground realities may mislead your scheme of governance. Dealing FBR/Income Tax with the prism of DMG officers in the PM House may further damage the service and may seriously affect the revenue outcomes”.

“Mr Prime Minister! Remember, FBR is the only institution in this country which meets almost cent per cent of its target with “Zero Infrastructure” every year. Make me and my law strong and I will exceed your 8000 target”.


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