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The representatives of ‘Naya Pakistan’ don’t pay taxes

If the words ‘Naya Pakistan’ are searched on google, hundreds of websites, facebook pages, videos and blogs come up. These blogs, facebook pages, websites were made by PTI workers and supporters to show their support to PTI Chairman Imran Khan before the 2013 elections. They not only helped many voters to decide in favour of PTI’s candidates on the election day but also helped boost the morale of PTI’s workers throughout election campaign.

When throngs of people started joining Pakistan Tehreek e insaf after Imran Khan’s famous Oct 2011 public speech at Minar e Pakistan, many people pointed out that accepting everyone in PTI’s folds might compromise on the ideology of PTI. The answer given by IK to these ‘fear-mongers’ was that anyone can join the party but only credible people would be given tickets to contest the 2013 elections.

During the election campaign, Pakistan Tehreek e Insaf claimed that all its election ticket holders and party office bearers had been thoroughly scrutinized for charges of misappropriation, corruption and non-payment of taxes to the state of Pakistan.

Recently Pakistan Federal Board of Revenue published the tax details of all parliamentarians who had submitted their tax returns. Since PTI claimed to have the most ferocious internal scrutinizing committees during elections, it is logical to focus on the tax details of parliamentarians from KP and especially of the popular PTI leaders in KP assembly.

From the records published by FBR, 77 out of 116 parliamentarians from KP did not pay any sort of tax. This means a whopping 67% majority paid 0 tax. Of the remaining 33%, only 29 parliamentarians actually paid a decent amount of tax (i.e > Rs10,000)

According to the website of provincial assembly KP, PTI has 54 parliamentarians in the assembly and its allied parties (JI, AJI, Independents) have 15 members in total, which makes about 56% of the whole parliament.

It is disappointing that these 77 members who paid Rs 0 in taxes include many big names from PTI. KP Minister for health Shuakat Ali Yousaf Zai, Minister for revenue, Ali Amin Khan, Minister for Public Health engineering, Shah Farman, all paid Rs 0 in taxes. Minister for agriculture and information technology Shah Raham Khan tarki did not consider it important to file his tax return. Speaker of KP assembly Asad Qaiser also didn't pay any tax.

Naya Pakistan cannot be built by mere slogans but requires sending honest, credible and hard working parliamentarians in assemblies. So, for now we will have to bare with purana Pakistan and purana KP. 

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