Disabling mobile phones and utility connections is being detected to identify those who fail to file annual income tax returns.
Tax returns for the tax year 2022 have been extended three times from the original deadline, which expired on December 15, 2022.
Taxpayers with special financial years, including salaried individuals, business individuals, associations of persons, and corporations, were required to file their returns by September 30, 2022.
Nevertheless, corporations with fiscal years ending June 30 should file their returns for the tax year 2022 before December 31, 2022.
An important point to note here is that section 114B of the Income Tax Ordinance, 2001, which authorizes authorities to enforce filing, was inserted by Finance Act, 2022.
Income Tax Ordinance, 2001, Section 114B reads as follows:
Section 114B. Powers to enforce filing of returns.
(1) The Board may, notwithstanding any other law currently in force, issue income tax general orders in respect of individuals who do not appear on the active taxpayers’ list but are required to file a return under the provisions of the Ordinance.
(2) Any or all of the following consequences may result from an income tax general order issued under sub-section (1), namely:-
(a) Deactivation of mobile phones or SIM card cards;
(b) the termination of the connection to electricity;
(c) discontinuance of gas connection.
The Board or Commissioner having jurisdiction over the person mentioned in the income tax general order may restore mobile phones, mobile phone SIM cards, and electrical connections in the following cases:
(a) The person has filed the return or was not required to file the return.
(4) The following conditions must be met before a person can be included in the general order under sub-section (1):
(a) notice under sub-section (4) of section 114 has been issued;
(b) date of compliance of the notice under sub-section (4) of section 114 has elapsed; and
(c) the person still needs to file the return.