A country that refuses to collect its own taxes

EOBI stands on six broken pillars
July 18, 2021
An open letter to Chairman FBR
July 29, 2021

An open letter to Chairman FBR.

You are perhaps the only tax collection organisation in the world, whose principal aims appear to be the following:

  1. To ensure that Pakistanis are discouraged and where possible harassed and tortured when it comes to paying their taxes.
  2. To ensure that a complicated system of tax payment is designed that ensures that NO PAKISTANI can ever use it and has to rely on tax consultants , often in cahoots with the FBR officials. So before an ordinary citizen can pay say Rs.10,000 tax to the government, he must pay Rs.15,000 to a tax consultant. Therefore he will do neither. Even the “Asaan Tax” App ought to have been called “Mushkil Tax” as it cannot be used by any citizen of Pakistan.
  3. To ensure that the tax payers and the tax revenue of this great country are kept at such abysmally low levels that the country perpetually remains a beggar and under debt of donor agencies.

Sadly, for the last 70 years, you have performed outstandingly well on the above three counts, thus becoming the biggest hurdle in the progress and well being of Pakistan.

If you had even an iota of interest in your job, you could have asked any one on the street, if he ever paid tax or tried to use your convoluted website for payment of taxes. In the hundreds of interviews we carried out with people who have finance and computer degrees, they confirm that not a single one of them is able to figure out head or tail of your “designed to destroy” website. Let me assure you that even YOU have no clue about how it works.

All that was needed was a one page simple form in URDU and English where every citizen, who is even eighth class pass, can give basic facts of his income and himself decide the tax to be paid according to the block in which the income falls. The tax payment should NOT require any PSID, “chalaans” or queuing in banks. Announce a bank account number (on TV and newspapers) and any citizen using his phone and mobile money transfer systems like Easy Paisa, UPaisa or Jazz should be able send the tax amount against his/her CNIC to that bank account.

For 70 years, you have not been accountable to either your profession or your conscience. You are the architects of making Pakistan worse than a third world country. Let me however assure you that you will be ultimately accountable to the people and the law of Pakistan.

May I humbly request that please make tax payment easy and do-able by every citizen of Pakistan so that millions more, who want to contribute to the growth of this great country can do so.


Naeem Sadiq