LAHORE: The Pakistan Kissan Ittehad (PKI) has strongly opposed the Federal Board of Revenue’s (FBR) SRO-563 issued on April 29, 2022, whereby only those farmers can get tractors at 5 percent GST who will provide copies of their “Pass Book” or “Land Holding” record verified by the concerned land revenue office. “In this regard, 17pc sales tax will be applicable in all other cases,” said PKI President Khalid Mahmood Khokhar on Sunday.
He said the SRO is not “practical” as it will create problems for the farmers. As per the SRO, he said, the farmers would have to spend extra cost and time to get the copies of land records and verify them from the concerned land revenue authority. “In case of joint family system, mostly lands are not transferred to the youth, who are doing practical agriculture business and buy tractors and farm machinery. So they have to pay 17pc sales tax as they are not the land owner,” he explained.
According to Khalid, the SRO does not cover the farmers doing farming on rental and lease lands. It also does not cover the agro-rental-service providers having no lands or purchased farm machinery on bank loans against urban or any other non-agriculture property, he added.
He further said that in many areas of the country, the land records are not regularly updated. So in that scenario, the farmers will pay extra tax and price, he said and termed the situation very “upsetting” as they are already under the severe economic pressure due to increase in agri input prices and water shortage.
The PKI president request the prime minister and the finance minister to immediately take notice of the issue and advise the concerned FBR authorities to immediately withdraw SRO-563. Moreover, he demanded that a five percent sales tax rate should be ensured for tractors for being a key requirement for agriculture and a source of self-employment for rural youth.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2022