ay goodbye to IMF and get rid of “interest” (Sood) based economy

Nasir Mahmood

The government has already collected very handsome amounts from various friendly countries; hence Imran Khan should vehemently refuse to get any loan from IMF and its conditionality. Hashmat Habib, senior lawyer of Supreme Court and President Tehreek-e-Tahafuz-e-Adlia said while commenting on current state of affairs.

If government really wish to do any service to nation, this is the time they should get clear cut judgement from Federal Shariat Court (FSC) against the “interest” (Sood) dealings in Pakistan. This is against the Constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan and declared “Haram” by Islam. It should be completely banned forever. Once the decision is made, we would be able to apply it just like the Americans did through ‘Pressler amendment’ against the deal of F-16 aircraft in the past and many other actions on different occasions, Hashmat said.

On the basis of FSC judgement we should refuse to pay the “interest” on all local and international loans. We must renegotiate those loans with all institutions. On the other hand we should also deal with “Circular Debts” of power sector in the country. NAB should seriously review all the cases of IPPs through FIA and renegotiate their contracts in detail.

Similarly, there is complete survey of properties and real estate in the country. Government should end all other taxes and impose a nominal and simple tax on these properties, you will be amazed to see how much amounts are collected through this easy exercise, Hashmat Habib added.

While endorsing various comments and objections of trade and industry against new anti-people budget he said; this is ground reality that the whole country is suffering from rotten attitude of government authorities. He warned that people are fed up with this criminal culture and there could be a big blast any time in the country. There may be turmoil in the country. “In my opinion hidden powers are working for economic disaster. They want to bring enraged people on streets so that they could execute the hidden agenda,” he said.

According to senior lawyer, Imran Khan has got a chance to play positive role but he is hopelessly melting down the nation. His aimless decisions are leading us nowhere. “I will advise him to revive national institutions keeping them intact and cure the deficiencies if he wishes to develop this country. There must be downsizing in various government institutions.”

It may be mentioned here that representatives of trade and industry are in Islamabad participating in FBR’s budget and taxation anomalies committee meetings. While talking to this scribe they said that this is impossible to get copy of CNIC from buyers who were purchasing the goods of more than Rs 50 thousand values and submit it to government departments. They said this trend will promote smuggling enormously in the country.

The Prime Minister, Advisor to the PM on Finance, Advisor to the PM on Commerce and Chairman, FBR in the meeting with trade and industry did not agree on 3 demands i.e. Zero Rating for 5 Export Oriented Industrial Sectors ; Restoration of FTR Regime for Commercial Importers and Reduction in Services Sector Taxation.

All Pakistan CNG Association (APCNGA) said the budget proposal to increase tariff of natural gas for the troubled CNG industry by 31 percent will bankrupt this sector. The proposal of the government, if accepted, will lay waste to the CNG industry in which trillions of rupees have been invested while it will also leave millions unemployed, it said.

A leader of the CNG sector Ghiyas Abdullah Paracha said; decision to increase natural gas tariff from the current Rs 980 per mmbtu to Rs 1283 per mmbtu will ruin the CNG stations in Sindh, Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Government should reconsider the decision as the strained CNG sector has lost all strength to endure more tax measures or carry the load of other sectors. CNG sector should not be subjected to discrimination and the recent proposal should be reversed as the government has already increased natural gas tariff by 40 percent six months ago, he added.

Appreciation in the value of the US dollar has brought the price of CNG closer to petrol and further taxes can end the difference for CNG sector. Collapse of the CNG industry will also put the government in trouble as it will not be able to recover their bills. Leader of the CNG sector demanded the government to eliminate GIDC and reverse decisions to increase tariff of natural gas and invalidate the decision to slap customs duty on import of LNG.

“I think our bureaucrats are deliberately destroying the economy of Pakistan,” a trader said. They assume the whole nation thief except these so called bureaucrats, technocrats and politicians. That’s why they are imposing the condition of obtaining CNIC copies from each buyer, he added.

Citing an example the other businessmen recalled the era of seventies when Bhutto regime had announced nationalization of basic industries. That damage was yet not repaired even after the lapse of 48 years. Once you lost the trust of people, you are finished forever. After disrupting the main industries in 70s now they are willing to destroy traders of the country. If trade is finished the country would be ultimately nosedived. But the bureaucrats don’t bother; because their children and families are living and educating abroad. They have shifted their wealth to foreign countries and obtained dual nationalities. That’s why they don’t have any sympathy with Pakistani people. They know that nobody could get the looted money back from them. As per recent shocking statistics released by social media more than 22 thousand civil servants and their families had obtained foreign the nationalities but still working in the government departments.

Another businessman said; believe me that after this attitude the local traders would also flee. They are looking to obtain nationalities of Croatia, Romania and other countries. Even today we are paying more taxes than these showmen communities. But the regime of unscrupulous rulers is unjustly maligning us for the sake of their ulterior motives, he added.

Commenting on the decision to ban and register prize bonds worth Rs 40,000 they said the government will lose an amount worth Rs 946 billion collected on account of all prize bonds. Government should not press the businesspersons very hard to fulfil its documentation agenda as it can stoke the demand for dollars in the country bringing forex reserves under pressure, they further warned.

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