ISLAMABAD-Federal Tax Ombudsman (FTO)Coordinatior Meher Kashif Younis on Sunday disclosed that a special cell had been established for overseas Pakistanis at FTO office to address their tax-related grievances on top priority as remarkable numbers of Pakistanis living abroad were sending over $31 billion remittances annually.

Speaking at an awareness session with industrialists and traders at FTO office for quick redressal of tax-related grievances, he said, FTO received a number of complaints from overseas Pakistanis for double deduction of tax on their assets being received here and bearing ordeal of unable to upload refund application on FBR portal. He said now the aggrieved overseas Pakistanis can get their legitimate issues resolved promptly through a cell headed by Legal Advisor Almas Ali Javinda.

He said FTO disposed off over 5,000 tax complaints in first ten months of the calendar year which is a record in history and the work on the remaining 500 pending complaints is in process. He said FTO is the only lawful entity in the world where complaints sent through a portal, mobile app, WhatsApp, email, in person, fax, written are processed free of cost on same day and disposed off within maximum 40 day while some of them are resolved same day by one call to the concerned department pointing out flaws.

Meher Kashif Younis said low paid staff of Radio Pakistan and Pakistan Television Corporation has been exempted from tax deduction by the FTO. He said low paid PTV employees complained for deduction of 20 percent tax every month from their salaries ranged from Rs36,000 to Rs4,500 which FTO held unjustified and got refunded entire tax deductions.

He said FTO always holds business community and tax payers in high esteem as they are backbone of economy and contributes a lot in strengthening national economy. He said a number of senior business leaders enjoying good integrity from chambers have also been engaged in a capacity of honorary Advisors and coordinators to promote liaison and facilitate tax payers. He said, “We are lucky having such a Allah fearing FTO who is all the time available to rescue the tax payers from high handedness of tax authorities.” “On the other hand, all tax payers are duty bound to pay their liabilities on time as affairs of state are governed with tax collection,” he maintained.