President rejects FBR supplications in Rs1.2bn fake invoices scam


ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi on Sunday disposed of 42 representations of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) in cases of bogus nuisance tax invoices worth over Rs1.2 billion.

The representations had been filed with the president assailing the orders of the Federal Tax Ombudsman (FTO) passed in suo motu cases, during which bogus nuisance tax refunds were reimbursed fully or partially by the FBR officials to fake claimants.

The FBR’s Directorate General Intelligence & Investigation-Inland Revenue had unearthed the scam and red alerts were issued to the sector formations concerned. However, no action was initiated against the delinquent officials and therefore the fake claimants.

The FTO, taking suo motu notice of the matter, had directed the FBR to research and identify the officials involved in verification of the registered persons and initiate a disciplinary action.

In pursuance of the FTO’s recommendations and also the previous orders of the president passed in similar cases, the FBR constituted six fact-finding inquiry committees to affect 130 suo motu cases concerning fake refund claims.

The terms of reference of the committees were meant to spot the wrongdoing and involvement of officials in each case, and fix responsibility. These committees were also tasked to organize a draft charge-sheet and statement of allegations with reference to each official and submit a report back to the FBR within 30 days. President Alvi, in sight of the findings of the committees, disposed of the representations of the FBR concerning the cases during which full or partial refunds were paid fraudulently.

He directed the FBR to submit a monthly implementation report back to the FTO’s secretariat till the completion of the action on each case.

He also ordered that a chance of show-cause and hearing tend to the official just in case of any departmental action proposed against him, to satisfy the need of due process of law and therefore the principles of natural justice.

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