The FBR has issued a clarification about a news item appearing in Daily Express Tribune wherein it is alleged in the news story that FBR had directed all Commissioners (Appeals) to report to the heads of Regional and Large Tax Offices, said a press release issued by the FBR here.
FBR has clarified that the news item reflects misunderstanding and out of context reference of Legal Wing’s letters dated August 11th and 20th, 2021.
While explaining the reason of writing the letters, FBR referred to the Video Link Conference of Commissioners Appeals held on 10th August 2021,
which was chaired by erstwhile Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr Waqar Masood and the then Chairman FBR Asim Ahmad wherein it was directed that a quarterly review meeting may be conducted by Commissioners (Appeals) with the relevant Chief Commissioners of field offices to highlight legal and factual shortcomings of orders passed by the officers in field formations.
The said news report is based on incorrect appraisal of facts, as no such directions have been issued with the purpose to interfere in the judicial process of Commissioners (Appeals).
FBR has further clarified that the office of Commissioner (Appeals) is an independent judicial forum. The instructions are of advisory nature and do not place Commissioners IR (Appeals) under the administrative control of Chief Commissioners or field formations.
The purpose of the instructions was to highlight legal and factual shortcomings of orders of the officers to help improve quality of assessment orders.
This will help reduce unnecessary litigation, as weak assessment orders do not stand the test of appeal and burden the taxpayers as well as the department with unnecessary litigation.
FBR has further clarified that in view of the increasing workload of the Commissioners IR (Appeals), the said letter is also being withdrawn to allow them to concentrate more on timely disposal of pending appeal cases.