Sales tax defaulters offered amnesty

KARACHI (June 17 2005): About 400 sales tax registered persons in Karachi will be benefited from the amnesty scheme announced by the Central Board of Revenue (CBR) under SRO 520(1)/2005 in the Federal Budget 2005-06.

The amnesty provides that if a registered person pays the principal amount he would be exempted from payment of additional tax and penalty.

The Sales Tax Collectorate (Enforcement) has sent letters to the taxpayers having tax arrears with additional tax and penalty requesting them to avail of the amnesty, which requires them to deposit the principal amount by June 30.

The letter addressed to the sales tax registered persons said that as per record of this Collectorate the arrears of principal amount of sales tax with additional tax and penalties are recoverable from the defaulters. In case they are interested in availing of the amnesty they are requested to deposit the amount outstanding against them as per SRO 520(1)/2005, in any of the designated branches of the National Bank of Pakistan in Karachi by June 30, 2005.

Those depositing the principal amount have been asked to send a copy of the treasury challan to the Collectorate for information and record. The Collectorate has reminded the taxpayers that the amnesty is valid for payment on or before June 30, 2005.

The new amnesty has been announced by the CBR apparently to generate maximum revenue before the year-end. The amnesty schemes however, announced a couple of years ago did not produce the desired results and went on deaf ears in most of the default cases.

According to sources at the Collectorate the new amnesty provides an excellent chance to the defaulters to wipe out their tax arrears and avail of the amnesty. To avoid payment of additional tax and penalty which usually exceeds many times the principal amount.

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