Imposition on taxes at erstwhile Fata: PHC observes FCR still intact

Humayun Khan
PESHAWAR: A divisional bench of Peshawar High Court (PHC) comprised of Justice Ishtiaq Ibrahim and Justice Ijaz Anwar has suspended Tribal Electricity Supply Company (TESCO) notification regarding imposition of sales tax along with other in electricity bills of four steel mills in district Khyber, on Wednesday.
PHC has also stopped competent authorities from any adverse actions against the steel mills and ordered to submit reply in this regard while Shumail Ahmad Butt and Haris Khan advocates appeared before court.
The petition stated that earlier different taxes were imposed in electricity bills but steel mills approached High Court while PHC has declared null& void taxes expect sales tax and ordered that it should be submit in 36 equal installments. The counsel argued that steel mills are submitting sales tax as per High Court’s orders but now TESCO demanding further taxes and notices had issued in this regard to manufacturers with warnings.
Rs900 million further taxes are claimed from the steel mills otherwise action should be taken against family members along with sealing the production plants by disconnecting power to the facility, the counsel informed. Shumail Ahmad Butt argued that it is against the law because High Court has granted judgement in this regard.
However, Justice Ijaz Anwar observed that is Frontier Crimes Regulation (FCR) intact in erstwhile Fata that TESCO are threatening petitioner with arrest. PHC has suspended notification issued in this regard while ordered TESCO to submit comments.
Similarly, PHC has stopped Cantonment Board Peshawar from taking adverse action against woman petitioner and granted status quo against new law regarding property taxes in the premises while ordered applicant to submit taxes on old standards at Cantonment Office.
The counsel Mian Zakir Hussain argued that taxes are imposed under Section 64(B) of Cantonment Board Act 1924 on different properties but on 28 March 2022 residential buildings into commercial which has multiplied taxes while fine notices are also issued to petitioners for didn’t made compliance with new law.
PHC has already stopped Cantonment Board from adverse actions while petitioners directed to submit taxes on previous rates and added that residents are compelling for submission of further taxes, the counsel argued. PHC has stopped any adverse actions against petitioner woman and ordered Executive Officer Cantonment Board Peshawar to submit reply in this regard.