Revised Inland Revenue Bill on Aug. 25

The revised draft of the inland revenue act will be tabled in parliament on August 25, say sources in the Ministry of Finance.

The amendments were introduced after the Supreme Court ruled that clause 200 of the draft were inconsistent with articles three and
four of the constitution.

The sources say the aim of the new act is to grant concessions to the public by raising direct taxes from 20 per cent to 40 pc and bringing down the indirect taxes from 80 pc to 60 pc.

No powers on defaulted tax payments

It will also deny powers to the subject minister and the inland revenue chief to grant concessions or write off defaulted tax payments.

Tax rates will be brought down considerably by making the tax policy transparent and simple for ease of business, while the gathering of tax information will be made more efficient in order make an export-oriented economy.

The new act will also give time to make tax appeals and increase direct taxes based on suitability and income generation.

Ministry refutes rumours

The sources refute the rumours making rounds that claim that religious places and artistes will be taxed.

It is wrong to interpret the allocation of a tax number to every citizen aged over 18 years as a move to impose taxes on all, the sources say, adding that no one with an annual income of less than Rs. 1.2 million will have to pay income tax.

The finance ministry sources allege that those who spread these falsehoods are the ones who earn a high income that require them to pay income tax, but are evading the tax net.

The sources add that a public awareness campaign in this regard will be conducted in the future.