ISLAMABAD: Cerina Isa, the wife of Justice Qazi Faez Isa, on Friday released the statement she had submitted along with required documents to the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) a day ago, in compliance with the latter’s notice in an attempt to remove the propaganda against the judge’s family.
She said she continued to face harassment, humiliation and propaganda and expressed the hope that the FBR officials would not allow themselves to be used or bullied as she asked them to apply the same law to Prime Minister Imran Khan, Law Minister Farogh Nasim, former attorney general Anwar Mansoor and Assets Recovery Unit chairman Shahzad Akbar and their families.
“Every day we are told that they [the government] were striving for the ‘Madina ki Riyasat’, therefore I am sure these gentlemen will be only too happy to inform an ordinary taxpaying woman about how much tax they pay and the status of their wives and children’s properties and if not then I may have to ask them questions,” she said.
The copies of her statement were released at the National Press Club (NPC), Islamabad, through her counsel along with annexures regarding the three offshore properties.
She said she had to present the X-ray films before the media to negate the offensive propaganda that she was pretending that she was not well by using a walking stick at the FBR office.
Seeks tax records and property details of PM, law minister, ARU chairman, ex-AG and their families
In reply to Commissioner (IR) AEOI Zulfikar Ahmad, Mrs Isa wondered should FBR not ask Prime Minister Imran Khan why he paid less tax than her and yet somehow managed to buy very expensive properties and lives in a 300-kanal massive mansion.
Should the FBR not ask the PM, ARU chairman, law minister and ex-AG how they “illegally obtained her past income tax records and then disclosed the same”, she questioned.
“I did not want to drag anyone into this but I have had enough of being spied on, abused and harassed for the last year and made to feel like a common criminal,” she stated. “Please do not blame me if all that I ask FBR to provide me copies of the income tax records of the prime minister, Abdul Waheed Dogar (the original complainant), Mirza Shahzad Akbar, Farogh Naseem, Anwar Mansoor, Dr Mohammad Ashfaq Ahmed, and whether they show the properties of their wives and children in their income tax papers.
“Please provide copies of their returns from when they started paying income tax till now, as they had obtained and disclosed my records, she said adding they should not have objections if FBR treats them similarly.
“I’m sure as dedicated professional you will apply the law with an even hand and not allow yourself to be used or bullied,” she observed.
Mrs Isa said she paid tax of Rs576,540 in 2018 from the taxable income of Rs4 million while for the year 2019 she paid Rs809,970 on the income of Rs5.3 million. It was said she was not receiving FBR notices on June 25, she said, adding that the very day she had lost her father. This false pretext of not receiving the notices was then used to paste notices on the gate of her residence to humiliate her in front of her household staff and everyone in the neighbourhood, she alleged.
She disclosed that when she was in Quetta with her husband, they had not only received threats but also terrorists carried out an attack. “I feared that the next terrorist attack may be successful and I wanted to secure my children’s future,” the statement said, adding she helped them buy two properties in a relatively cheap area on the outskirts of London.
“My son worked in an estate agency and also did some private contractual work,” the statement said, adding her son-in-law was working for the UK Ministry of Justice and her daughter-in-law worked as a financial analyst in London.
“If I wanted to conceal our ownership of properties we could have easily purchased them using a sham offshore company to hide the properties ‘real owners’. If you don’t believe me, please ask Prime Minister Khan and his well experienced coterie as to how they concealed their own ownership properties abroad,” she alleged.
“FBR also asked for the money trail for the properties,” she said, adding she didn’t know what the FBR meant by money trail. “Please explain and identify the provision in the Income Tax Ordinance (ITO) 2001 where money trail is mentioned so that she can understand and answer the question.”
She also enclosed along with her statement to FBR return of income, wealth statement and foreign income and assets statement for the year 2018, 2019, certificate issued by UBL, Standard Chartered Bank’s certificate in respect of the foreign currency account of December 2019 showing deposits for the year 2003 to 2013 amounting to pounds 671,490 and remittances abroad during the years 2003 to 2013 amounting to pounds 698,002.
Moreover, she also annexed investment position certificate of the National Saving Centre (NSC), different tax deduction certificates issued by NSC, the property registers maintained by the Land Registry showing the date and price of all the three properties, pictures of the envelopes attached to the gate and returning the open original envelopes with notices to her daughter and son.
Published in Dawn, July 11th, 2020