Senate body discusses PTA issues in detail

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: Senate Standing Committee on Cabinet Secretariat in its meeting on Thursday discussed the status of recruitment in Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA), violations and penalties imposed by PTA on the mobile companies operators during the last five years.

The meeting was held under the chairmanship of Senator Muhammad Talha Mehmood here at the Parliament House and was attended among others by Senators Muzaffar Hussain Shah, Mushtaq Ahmed, Seemi Ezdi, Mushahidullah Khan, Najma Hameed and officials from Cabinet Division, Pakistan Telecommunication Authority, Federal Investigation Agency. 

The committee also discussed in details the taxes paid to the government by the mobile companies aga-inst the deductions by the consumers while charging of the cell phone billin-g/calling cards, complai-nts/cases of cyber-crimes and their resolutions.

The committee was told by Federal Investigation Authority (FIA) that initially there were three complaint centres in 2007, 3  were included in 2018 and six  in 2018.

The committee was told that from 2015 to 2019, 69,028 verifications, 14,765 enquiries, 1696 cases, 1716 accused were registered and 656 challans , 134 convictions and 156 acquittals were made.

The committee was told that in PTA, 22 people were recruited in 2015, 19 in 2017, 1 in 2018 and 11 in 2019.

The committee sought details about the procedure adopted and quotas observed while undergoing the process of recruitment in the next meeting.

The issue of tax deductions and its collection from the mobile card was discussed at length and it was told that out of the 25.5% deduction on each 100 rupee card around 11% was withholding tax and around 14% was general sales tax.

It was told that a total of Rs 4,5000000  had been paid as tax to the government from 2015 to 2018.

The committee expressed dissatisfaction over the percentage of deduction and its collection and called upon the relevant departments to give a detailed briefing on the matter during the next meeting.