Govt to take stern action against unregistered properties


ISLAMABAD, (INP): Federal government has decided to take stern action against those who possess unregistered properties after buying them through illegal money.
Strict rules will be formed to investigate illegal properties of corrupt politicians, bureaucrats, businessmen and tax evaders, whereas, new ideas are being introduced by making amendments in rules after implementation of ‘Benami’ Transactions (Prohibition) Act 2017.
It has been revealed that concerned assistant commissioner or deputy commissioner will forward a case to adjudicating authority if any undeclared immovable property is found out in any part of the country.
The appointment of adjudicating authority will be made by the federal government, and the officers in adjudicating authority will be no less than chief commissioner Inland Revenue or federal additional secretary.
The authority will possess all rights to seal unregistered properties and confiscate their documents after conducting inquiry. It will announce decision of the case within one year, and property will be seized if proved to be unnamed.
Furthermore, the culprits will be fined 25 percent amount of the market worth of that property. The offenders will also be jailed for minimum one and maximum seven years.
The decision of adjudicating authority could be challenged by appealing in appellate tribunals set by federal government. Federal government will also establish special courts after consulting with concerned high court and laws are being formulated in this regard.
These courts will work under the same rules, and last platforms to appeal will be high court and Supreme Court (SC).
A worth mentioning thing in this case is that a new concept of ‘whistle blowing’ has been introduced in which the informer of undeclared property will be given reward. On the other hand, those who will give false information will be imprisoned for six months to five years.
Famous tax expert and former Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Chief Commissioner Inland Revenue Mustafa Ashraf told that all corrupt politicians, bureaucrats, generals, businessmen and other tax evaders which have made illegal properties through black money in the names of their families, relatives, friends and employs may come under scrutiny due to this law.
He further said that government should immediately appoint members of adjudicating authority and federal tribunal, complete the formulation of rules so that this law becomes functional.
Let it be known that ‘Benami’ Transactions (Prohibition) Act 2017 has been implemented with immediate effect, and those unregistered properties could not be transferred according to the rule after case is lodged against them. Moreover, Income tax authority will have the right to issue the notice.