Govt urged to stop undue raids at business premises, harassment of taxpayers

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  • LCCI president says businessmen want to pay taxes but the method adopted by the tax officials is not encouraging

LAHORE: The Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has urged the government to constitute a committee, comprising representatives from public and private sectors, to sort out the issues pertaining to “undue raids at business premises and the subsequent harassment of the taxpayers”.

In a statement on Thursday, LCCI President Almas Hyder said that the proposed committee should have representatives of the chambers, bar associations, financial market and industrial associations, and Federal Board Revenue (FBR), as this is the only way to resolve this grave issue of the business community.

“The businessmen want to pay taxes but the method adopted by the tax officials is not encouraging,” the LCCI president stated, adding that disrespect to businessmen is not acceptable at any cost, as they are the backbone of the economy.

He said the government must rescue the traders, as they are now taking to the streets against the rude attitude of the tax department officials, who are misusing their discretionary powers badly by conducting raids without keeping in view the effects of such actions on the economy.

“The government should understand that protests and strikes always hit the economic activities hard, therefore, the raids should be stopped immediately in the larger interest of the economy,” he added.

The LCCI president alleged that Section 38-B of Sales Tax Act, 1990, is being misused by the tax officials.

“How those outside the tax net will come into the tax ambit if the existing taxpayers are being disregarded?” the LCCI president questioned. “If there is an urgent need to ascertain the sales tax liability of any particular business unit, the FBR officials should take association concerned or the Lahore chamber on board first.”

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