The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) is compiling lists of media personalities and real estate tycoons in cases where declared income does not match with their lifestyles. Sources told Business Recorder here on Friday that the FBR has issued instructions to the Chief Commissioners Inland Revenue in the field formations for taking necessary action against them. The FBR has started an analysis of data of media personalities and real estate tycoons for compilation of list of individuals where declared income does not match with their lifestyles.
According to the FBR's instructions to the field formations, the PM has desired a fruitful action against high profile cases, strictly against those persons whose declared income does not match with their life style. Among others, the preferred areas are media personalities, politicians and businessmen including real estate tycoons. Sources said the Chief Commissioners Inland Revenue (CCIRs) are requested to firm up their lists of such persons for action and share the same with the FBR.
The field formations should focus on personalities where declared income doesn't match with lifestyle and the list be shared by each CCIR with FBR, FBR's instructions added. Directorate General Immoveable Properties has given the task to the Pakistan Revenue Automation Limited (PRAL) to make dedicated software to integrate real estate websites with the challans submitted under section 236K of the Income Tax Ordinance 2001. The integration would be instrumental in identifying cases of under-statements of values of immovable properties. The values of immovable properties on the real estate websites and actual challans would be compared through the dedicated software of PRAL.
Moreover, the FBR will also introduce 'Valuation Dash Board' to integrate real estate with computerised payment receipts (CPRs) deposited under section 236K of the Ordinance to ascertain fair market values of properties vis-à-vis challans, they added. Directorate General IMP-IR shall act as FBR's specialised agency on all matters relating to real estate/immoveable properties, i.e. open plots, constructed properties including residential, commercial & industrial, agricultural lands, housing schemes/projects/societies/towers/chains of luxury apartments and other related similar assets.
The agency would also cover real estate classification in respective jurisdictions; office building (urban and suburban, skyscrapers, high-rise buildings, single tenanted/ multi-tenanted); retail (properties that house the retailers and restaurants and food outlets - multi-tenanted/standalone buildings) and industrial buildings that house industrial operations, i.e. heavy manufacturing, light assembly, bulk warehouse, flex industrial (both industry and offices) and research & development, mostly located outside of urban areas, especially along major transportation routes.
In 2012, the FBR's Directorate General of Intelligence and Investigation Inland Revenue had analysed the tax profiles of prominent media personalities including leading television anchors and detected cases where they have concealed their income by not filing their wealth statements, through under-reporting and wrong-reporting of taxes, hiding their movable and immovable assets.
It may be recalled that in the past, the FBR had prepared individual tax profiles of the television anchors for the Tax Years 2010 and 2011. The tax profiles of these television anchors reflected unique techniques to dodge the tax authorities. Non-filing of wealth statement was another glaring aspect witnessed in the tax profiles of the anchors. The report on prominent media personalities has provoked FBR and it has initiated exercise about analysing the tax status of the prominent Pakistanis. The FBR had also proposed to invoke provision of section 177 of the Income Tax Ordinance 2001 for detailed audit of the top television anchors keeping in view their tax profiles.
The FBR report of 2012 revealed that the media industry over the past couple of decades has experienced a phenomenal growth globally and Pakistan is no exception.
The report of 2012 focused on the cases of prominent individuals engaged in the industry. Their profiles are generated with specific focus on facets such as; whether they are: on tax roll or not; filer or non-filer of tax returns; and offering lawful and true declarations of their receipts/income; and whether their declarations are being subjected to proper taxation. The deficiencies observed were highlighted for a necessary legal action by the concerned tax authorities.