SC orders fresh probe into illegal tax refund case

FBR chairman told to complete inquiry in three months

By: 24 News      Published: 03:45 PM, 29 Jan, 2020
SC orders fresh probe into illegal tax refund case

The Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered fresh inquiry against Deputy Commissioner (Sales Tax) Abdul Hameed Anjum in the illegal tax refund case.

The three-member SC bench, headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan, directed FBR Chairman Shabbar Zaidi who appeared in the court, to complete the inquiry in three months.

Earlier, the court had ordered an inquiry against Additional Commissioner (Sales Tax) Dr Ashfaq and Deputy Commissioner (ST) Abdul Hameed Anjum, which exonerated the former of allegations and held the latter responsible.

Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed warned against “playing with the court, saying that it’s a pity the FBR gave clean chit to one officer in an offence another officer is punished for.”

The CJP expressed anger, saying that no one in FBR is ready to tell the truth to the court. In his remarks to the FBR chairman, the CJP said: “We know, you will produce the old inquiry in the court. But can’t you catch the officers manipulating the inquiry.”

The court ordered the FBR chairman to carry inquiry against Deputy Commissioner (ST) Abdul Hameed Anjum and report to the court.

Earlier, hearing illegal tax refund case, Chief Justice Qulzar Ahmed asked the FBR chairman whether any action has been taken against Ashfaq Deeno who got away with Rs874.4 million from exchequer. Shabbar Zaidi informed that a report has been submitted in the court about action taken against Deeno and the board has been making efforts for recovery of the amount.

Justice Sajjad Shah of the CJP-led bench asked the chairman, “what you are doing we could not understand anything as without record how can you conduct any inquiry?”

The chief justice questioned the FBR chairman, “what will happen if the court rejects the appeal?” He inquired from Shabbar Zaidi, who heads Deputy Commissioner? “Additional Commissioner,” replied the FBR counsel. The CJP then asked had the Additional Commissioner approved the refund? The counsel replied “no the additional commissioner did not approve the refund.” “It means there was no role of additional commissioner in the episode,” maintained Justice Ijazul Ahsan.

The CJP asked as to why Board of Governors did not agree with the inquiry and where is record of the transaction.

To which the counsel for FBR replied ‘No’.

Earlier, the FBR chairman appeared in the court and submitted a report about progress in the illegal tax refund case.