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The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) is contemplating legal action against the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) and telecom companies for their refusal to comply with orders to block mobile phone SIMs belonging to 506,671 non-filers, according to high-level sources reported by NetMag.

Sources revealed that if the PTA and telecom firms do not block the SIMs by May 15, the FBR intends to pursue legal action, including filing a petition in the Islamabad High Court. Officials from both the FBR and Finance Ministry have agreed to move forward with this action against the telecom companies and PTA due to their persistent defiance of the FBR’s directives. Sources mentioned that neither the PTA nor the telcos have complied with the order for over 10 days.

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Previously, the PTA and telecom companies argued that the SIM blocking directive violated fundamental civil rights and exceeded their jurisdiction. However, authorities appear undeterred by these claims.

In addition to legal measures, the government is contemplating imposing additional taxes on non-filers. Proposed measures include a 2.5 percent additional withholding tax on SIMs owned by non-filers, as well as increased taxes on mobile and data load transactions.

The federal government is vigorously preparing to take action against non-filers if compliance is not achieved by May 15, according to sources.

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