Pakistan, Imran Khan, tax, FBR, PTI, PML-N, PPP, Jahangir Tareen

Do you know who the top tax-paying politician of Pakistan is?

People often question about the conduct of rulers and their apparent neglect for the rules they enact in parliament. They also cast castigations on different party leaders for evading taxes, but that’s always not the same case as one believes so.

The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has launched fifth consecutive Tax Directory of Parliamentarians and for all taxpayers for year 2017 and it discloses that Jahangir Khan Tareen of PTI and Senator Taleh Mehmood of Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazal (JUI-F) were the top taxpayers among Parliamentarians.

Jahangir Khan Tareen paid Rs97,317,272 in tax year 2017 and became highest taxpayer among the members of previous National Assembly while Senator Taleh Mehmood paid Rs43,183,565 and stood at the top among Senators.

Prime Minister Imran as Parliamentarian in 2017 paid Rs103,763 in taxes compared to Rs159, 609 in 2016.

Out of total 342 National Assembly members, only 325 filed their returns in tax year 2017 while 98 Senators filed returns out of total 104 members of Upper House of Parliament. In both Houses, 23 members had not file their returns in tax year 2017.

“We will have to abandon traditional methods and go behind powerful and influential to bring them into tax for broadening of narrowed tax base. There is political will at the top and it will be part of our strategy to ensure financial disclosure,” Minister of State for Revenues Hammad Azhar said while addressing the launching ceremony of Tax Directory 2017 here at Board’s headquarters on Friday.

The Parliamentarians Tax Directory for year ended June 30, 2017 released by FBR showed that Nawaz Sharif who was then Prime Minister paid a total of Rs263,173 compared to Rs 252, 4213 in 2016, showing a decrease of Rs 226,1040. Syed Khursheed Shah, the then leader of the opposition in National Assembly had paid a total of Rs 256,121 taxes compared to Rs 124,215 during 2016. PML-N’s leader Ishaq Dar paid Rs 9,384,606 taxes as the then finance minister while the incumbent Finance Minister of PTI led regime Asad Umar paid Rs 4,849,615 as member of the National Assembly during the tax year 2017.

President Dr Arif Ali in 2017 had paid a total of Rs 377,511 in taxes as parliamentarian. The current speaker National Assembly Asad Qaisar paid tax of Rs 580,896 as Member of the KP Assembly.

Among the current cabinet members, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi paid a total of Rs653,943 as member of the National Assembly, Sheikh Rashid Ahmad Rs702,698, Shireen Mazari Rs1,569,558, Ghulam Sarwar Khan Rs1,384,747, Makhdoom Khusro Bakhtiar Rs475,573, Pervaiz Khattak Rs927,515, Murad Saeed Rs241,946, Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui Rs138,573, Shafqat Mehmood Rs24030, Tariq Bashir Cheema Rs235768, Fehmida Mirza Rs227,591, Ali Amin Khan Rs84,500, Ali Muhammad Khan Mahar Rs138,573 and Ali Muhammad Khan Rs461,868.

PPP senator and former chairman Senate Raza Rabbani paid Rs605,954 in taxes and also paid Rs742,202 tax as member of AOP during the tax year 2017 while Deputy Speaker Senate Saleem Mandviwala paid Rs1,441,848 in taxes during tax year 2017.

Among other top taxpayers included PPP’s senator from Balochistan Rozi Khan Kakar with Rs40,869,089, senator from erstwhile FATA Taj Mohammad Afridi Rs29,343,435, MQM-P’s Farogh Naseem Rs 27,887,974, PPP’s Senator Aitzaz Ahsan Rs25,869,738, PML-N’s MNA Isphanyar M Bhandara Rs22,959,458, PPP’s Senator Farooq H Naek Rs11,062,116, leader of the opposition in National Assembly and PML-N president Shehbaz Sharif Rs10,296,518, PML-N’s MNA Sheikh Fayyaz Ud Din Rs14,013,347.

In provincial assemblies, some members remained the top taxpayers during tax year 2017. JUI-F’s member of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa assembly Noor Saleem Malik paid Rs15,736,750, PML-N Hamza Shehbaz paid Rs8,268,298, PML-N’s chief minister of Balochistan Sardar Sanaullah Zehri Rs10,100,750, PML-N member of KP assembly Sardar Zahoor Ahmad Rs14,320,390, PML-N member of Punjab assembly Ch Arshad Javaid Warraich Rs13,632,762 and PPP’s Chief Minister Sindh Syed Murad Ali Shah Rs710,789, PTI’S chief minister KP Mahmood Khan Rs287,652.

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