2.5 million tax returns deadline: PTAA urges FBR not to put undue pressure

Pakistan Tax Advisors Association (PTAA) has urged the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) to avoid putting pressure on taxpayers, tax consultants, advocates and chartered accountants to ensure filing of 2.5 million income tax returns by September 30, 2019.According to a communication of PTAA Chairman Javed Iqbal Qazi with the FBR on Wednesday, with reference to the directions issued vide C. No. 2(1) cond/I.Tax/2018 dated 05.09.2019 by the Member Operations Inland Revenue to all Chief Commissioner Inland Revenue regarding extension of income tax returns/wealth statements conditionally for Tax Year 2019, it is submitted that this circular/letter is premature at this stage as firstly, the FBR has to allow 92 days from the date of putting the correct/ functional income tax return/wealth statement on the IRIS system for filing and then the question of extension of income tax return will arise.

At present, taxpayers have started filing returns through their authorized representatives although the system has a few functional problems, Qazi said.

The chairman PTAA noted that 2.5 million income tax returns were filed up to August 9, 2019 and the FBR expects that 2.5 m returns also be filed within 19 days till September 30. Last year 405 days were allowed to the tax payers and 2.5 million returns were filed.

This year FBR is putting pressure on all the tax payers, tax consultants, advocates & chartered accountants to achieve the desired target which is not possible in any case up to 30.09.2019.Instead of putting the correct income tax return/wealth statement on 1st of July, 2019 on IRIS System, the FBR has proved its worth by building/putting the pressure on the tax payers & relevant personnel which is not only unlawful but all also against the principle of natural justice and fair play, the chairman PTAA stated.

Through this letter the PTAA is also requesting the Prime Minister to redress this problem in the interest of the revenue based on the rights due to the taxpayers under the Constitution and Income Tax Ordinance, 2001 and FBR be directed to extend the date of submission of income tax returns/wealth statements to December 15, 2019 instead of September 30, 2019, Qazi added.