GUJRAT: The doctors and paramedical staff on Friday continued the strike against the raids at two private hospitals by a team of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) and confiscation of record.

Traders also announced a shutter-down strike in the district on Wednesday. The announcement was made by the representatives of various trade organisations at a news conference in the Gujrat Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GTCCI).

An FBR team had raided the private hospitals owned by Pakistan Medical Association Gujrat chapter president Dr Maqsood Zahid and Dr Zahid Zaheer, a former president of the PMA, a week ago.

The local business community has been facing pressure due to raids by the tax collection agencies such as the FBR, the Punjab Revenue Authority (PRA) and the Punjab Food Authority (PFA) on factories, shops, restaurants and banquet halls.

The harsh policy of the tax agencies have compelled the medical and business fraternities of Gujrat to join hands for putting up resistance.

The district administration says it will ensure that the services at the public health facilities will be continued. It says the consultants examined the patients visiting the OPD at the ABSTH emergency ward.

Officials say the health department has taken steps to provide treatment to the patients in the OPDs of the THQ hospitals and rural health centres.

Sources in the FBR say the cases of huge tax evasion are being prepared against the private hospitals.

The owners of the hospitals deny the charge and say the FBR should have issued notices to them if there is any anomaly.

Published in Dawn, February 9th, 2019

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