FBR seals Jazz's Islamabad office over non-payment of tax in billions

FBR seals Jazz’s Islamabad office over non-payment of tax in billions

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The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) on Wednesday sealed an office of Pakistan Mobile Communication Limited (PMCL) due to the non-payment of income tax amounting to Rs25.3 billion.

FBR’ Deputy Commissioner Inland Revenue issued the notice this morning (28/10/2020) stated that the sum of Rs. 25,393,653,480/- is due on account of tax in arrears. Moreover, they asked to pay the amount of tax today by 1300 hours, failing which legal actions to be taken.

FBR seals Jazz's Islamabad office over non-payment of tax in billions

As per the issued documents, the statement reads:

“PMCL is an existing taxpayer falling in the jurisdiction of this office [LTU Islamabad]. An income tax amount of Rs25,393,653,480 was outstanding against the said company, which has been refraining from clearing its liabilities deliberately, dishonestly, and without any lawful excuse, thus causing huge loss to the national exchequer.”

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“Therefore, based on facts stated inter alia, I, Ahmad Shakeel Babar, Deputy Commissioner Inland Revenue, in the exercise of the powers vested in me in terms of section 138 of the Income Tax Ordinance, 2001 read with section 48 of the Sales Tax Act, 1990, order to seal the business premises of the defaulter till the payment of outstanding dues in full or withdrawal of this order.”

It was further stated that any non-compliance/defiance to this order shall be tantamount to obstruction in the discharge of functions of an income tax authority. Besides this, it shall be punishable on conviction with a fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding one year or both under section 196 of the Income Tax Ordinance, 2001.

Statement from LTU Documents

As per documents, the LTU had earlier directed the PMCL CEO to clear the payable amount till Wednesday (today) and also produce the necessary evidence to that effect at the FBR’s office.

The PMCL was also warned that if the company does not comply in this regard, the tax department “could attach and sale the company’s moveable or immoveable property, and arrest and detain the concerned for a period not exceeding six months” as specified under clauses (a), (ca) and (d) of sub-section (I) of section 48 of the Sales Tax Act, 1990.

Response from Jazz

Jazz has also stated in response to the office being sealed:

“Jazz is a law-abiding and responsible corporate citizen. Our contribution to Pakistan’s economy over the past 25 years is significant. We have received a notice from FBR this afternoon. Jazz has made tax submissions based on legal interpretations of the tax owed. We will review and take measures under our legal obligations. Also, we will collaborate with all concerned institutions for an early resolution of this issue.”

Jazz customers were not happy for a long time with the services. Most of them have complains about call drops, poor connectivity, and the slow internet connection. Even though Jazz keeps advertising about its fastest internet speed and connectivity.

Many took to social media to vent their ire. The charge sheet was incomplete. Additionally, unreasonably incorrect bills, random premium rate calls and text charges, phone disconnected, and customers charged extra for the upgrade.

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