ISLAMABAD: Justice Qazi Faez Isa’s wife, Sarina Isa, on Saturday alleged that since her confidential and legally-protected income tax and bank records were illegally accessed, she also wanted similar information about those who were provided her details.
In a statement, Ms Isa stated that she wanted information about the people who accessed or were provided her confidential information and documents, especially Prime Minister Imran Khan, Law Minister Dr Farogh Nasim, Asset Recovery Unit Chairman Mirza Shahzad Akbar, Dr Mohammad Ashfaq Ahmed and complainant Abdul Waheed Dogar.
“They should not object because they have held or hold public office, while one of them, who is a government servant, complains that my family and I are not tax compliant,” she alleged in the statement.
The statement is annexed with her Aug 28 reply to the notices issued by commissioner (IR) FBR on Aug 21 under Section 122(9) and Section 111(1)(b) of the Income Tax Ordinance (ITO) 2001.
It stated that she was a private person who had never held public office or a position in government and had worked and paid a total of Rs809,970 and Rs576,540 as tax during the last two years.
Says FBR wants her to explain every rupee she earned during last 38 years
Earlier, she issued two similar statements, explaining her position in response to notices issued by the board.
In her reply, she asked the FBR to furnish her income tax returns on which the authority was relying, adding that the board wanted her to reconstruct her life and explain every rupee earned by her since she started working in Karachi American School some 38 years ago.
Highlighting Section 174(3) of the ITO, she recalled that the ordinance did not require an individual to maintain any record for more than six years after the end of the tax year to which they relate.
She argued that she was under no legal obligation to keep providing information to the FBR, but still she did voluntarily.
“Without prejudice to all my constitutional and legal rights, I also do not want to give you a pretext to allege that I did not provide information,” she stated, adding that it had become painfully clear to her that the Federal Board of Revenue intended to pass an alleged unjustified and illegal order since it did not consider to be bound by law.
She alleged that the FBR claimed that she could not have earned and saved enough to justify her purchase of three properties in London — one for £236,000 in the year 2004 and two in 2013 for £245,000 and £270,000, respectively.
Referring to Section 116A of the ordinance which was inserted through the Finance Act 2018, when for the first time foreign income and asset statement was required to be filed, she complied with the new legal requirement and filed her returns and statements with regard to foreign income and assets for the tax year 2018 and again for tax year 2019.
But the FBR has not explained under which provision she was required to disclose the foreign income and assets before the stated amendment.
Likewise, the FBR disregarded her agriculture income by purportedly relying on Section 111 of the ITO and treating it as unexplained income.
The board intentionally disregarded the fact that the proviso to Section 111 of the ordinance accepted income derived from agriculture on which income tax paid under the relevant provincial law was added through the Finance Act 2013, the statement added.
Therefore, the agricultural income cannot be disregarded irrespective of whether the provincial income tax was paid or restricted to adjustment to the extent of such payment.
She said she owned about 278 acres of agricultural land which was run and managed by her late father, who passed away on June 25, 2020.
She said she continued to derive substantial income from her agricultural land, investing some amount in saving certificates issued by the government.
Published in Dawn, August 30th, 2020