Shahid Khaqan Abbasi pays more tax than PM’s entire cabinet members
By Tanveer Abbas
Islamabad (TP) September 19, 2020: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) on Friday launched sixth consecutive tax directory for the year 2018, stating that former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi was the highest individual taxpayers in 2018.
The PML-N leader paid around Rs 242 million in taxes, which is twice as much tax as the entire cabinet members of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) paid.
Advisor to Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh and Chairman FBR Muhammad Javed Ghani formally launched the tax directory in the presence of media and business representatives at the FBR headquarters.
According to the detail, 25 members of the cabinet and Prime Minister Imran Khan collectively paid Rs111.8 million in taxes the same year. The PM paid Rs282, 449.
Interestingly, Water Resources Minister Faisal Vawda paid zero tax in the year while Defence Production Minister Zubaida Jalal’s tax record wasn’t found in the directory.
Industries and Production Minister Hammad Azhar and Petroleum Division Minister Omar Ayub were the top two taxpayers in the cabinet, contributing Rs59.4 million and Rs26 million to the exchequer respectively.
According to the tax directory, former president Asif Ali Zardari paid Rs2,891,455 and PPP Chairperson Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari paid Rs294,117 in taxes.
PML-N President and Opposition Leader in National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif paid Rs9,730,545 and his son Hamza Shehbaz paid Rs8,705,368 in taxes.
Among senators, Muhammad Farogh Naseem topped the list of taxpayers by contributing Rs35,135,459 in taxes while Muhammad Talha Mahmood paid Rs29,210,399. Senator Taj Muhammad Afridi paid Rs28,177,985 and Sajjad Hussain Turi paid Rs17,028,389 in taxes.
Among the four provincial Chief Ministers, the highest amount of Rs 4,808,948 was paid by Balochistan’s Jam Kamal at, followed by Sindh’s Murad Ali Shah who paid Rs1,022,184. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Mahmood Khan paid Rs235,982, while Chief Minister Punjab Usman Bazdar paid no tax during the same period.
According to the directory, some 90 senators and over 300 MNAs paid a total of Rs800 million in taxes while three senators, 56 MNAs, 14 MPAs of Balochistan, 14 KP MPAs, 66 Punjab MPAs and 20 Members of Provincial Assembly Sindh did not pay any tax during this period.
Meanwhile, Pakistan People’s Party rejected the tax figures of Asif Ali Zardari released by the FBR in the directory.
A party spokesman said that the tax figures issued by the FBR were incorrect, further saying that the top party leader paid a whopping tax of Rs22.25 million during 2018.
“Asif Zardari paid an income tax amount of Rs 2.218 million during the said year besides also paying an amount of Rs. 19.987 million under agriculture tax,” the spokesman said