Consequent upon issuance of Establishment Division O.M. No.6/2/2009-C.P.II dated 12.09.2009 and after obtaining options from officers of the defunct Income Tax Group and former Customs & Excise Group, on 15.11.2010, all officers of the defunct income tax group and a number of officers from the former Customs & Excise Group were immediately transferred and appointed to the Inland Revenue Service in terms of Civil Servants (Appointment, Transfer and Promotion) Rules 1973. As a result, Inland Revenue Service (IRS) came into being. At the same time, the former Customs & Excise Group was re-classified as Pakistan Customs Service and the defunct income tax group ceased to exist as all officers from the defunct income tax group had already opted for IRS.
IRS is now one of the elite federally constituted occupational groups. The government has approved 44 seats in BS-21 for IRS which is unmatched by any other occupational group. Members of this occupational group are selected after an extremely competitive process which generally involves candidates qualifying the Central Superior Services (CSS) Examination conducted by the Federal Public Service Commission. Initial appointment in BS-17 is as Assistant Commissioner of Inland Revenue.
The career progression in IRS is:
Assistant Commissioner -> Deputy Commissioner -> Additional Commissioner -> Commissioner -> Chief Commissioner ->Member -> Chairman
While serving in the Board, their career progression can be:
Second Secretary (BS-17/18)-> Secretary (BS-19)->Chief (BS-20)-> DG / Member (BS-21) -> Chairman (BS-22)
Another source of recruitment in BS-17 is the reserved quota for promottees who are promoted internally through internal promotional exams/length of service. Officers of the IRS administer the Inland Revenue Department which is responsible for collection of Income Tax, Sales Tax and Federal Excise receipts from across Pakistan. With government now increasingly focussed on increasing its revenue generation capacity, the role, importance and powers of IRS have greatly enhanced.
IRS Officers in the later stages of their careers also get posted as Commissioner (Appeals) and Member of Appellate Tribunal Inland Revenue, the latter coming directly under the Ministry of Law & Justice. IRS Officers tend to get massive training opportunities through the Federal Board of Revenue and Economic Affairs Division. The emphasis on training in IRS can be determined from the fact that Directorate General of Training & Research has built campuses at Islamabad and Karachi besides its main campus at Lahore to train the officers. From 31st Common to 35th Common, the IRS officers were also given an opportunity to complete MBA (Tax Management) from IBA, Karachi along with CTP and STP which was subsequently changed to EMBA from LUMS, Lahore or IBA, Karachi within three years of service. Due to their advanced training and exposure, IRS Officers are also highly sough-after by other departments like Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP), Securities & Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP), Federal Investigation Agency, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Economic Affairs, provincial departments of Finance, provincial Excise & Taxation Departments, local governments etc.
Each year several officers belonging to IRS are promoted to BS-22 under the reserved quota of IRS in the Federal Secretariat and posted as Federal Secretaries.
There are colonies for senior level IRS Officers in Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi. Also, for the junior level officers, houses are relatively easily available in Rawalpindi, Multan, Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Sialkot, Sukur, Quetta, Hyderabad and Abbottabad and Transit Accommodations are being built at Islamabad, Quetta and Hyderabad in first phase of a World Bank funded project. Such Transit Accommodations are proposed at all stations where RTOs/LTUs exist. In smaller stations like Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Gujranwala, Sialkot, Multan, Quetta, Sukkur, Abbottabad and Bahawalpur, BS-17 officers are usually given vehicles in the very first month of their service. Another attractive feature for IRS Officers is the double salary provision (i.e. Special allowance equivalent to 100% of basic pay) is given to nearly all officers and staff of IRS. Presently, Federal Board of Revenue has initiated a plan for the FBR Foundation which will look after the welfare needs of officers and staff belonging to IRS and Pakistan Customs Service.
During performance of their duties, IRS Officers have the support of uniformed inspectors and qualified auditors besides subordinate staff, and powers to arrest and confiscate. For the purpose of recovery of tax, section 138 of the Income Tax Ordinance 2001 provides that the Commissioner (including Assistant Commissioner), has the same powers a s a Civil Court has under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908. Furthermore, section 224 of the said Ordinance also provides that any proceedings before the Commissioner (including Assistant Commissioner) shall be treated as judicial proceedings within the meaning of section 193 and 228 of the Pakistan Penal Code, 1860 and for the purposes of section 196 of the Pakistan Penal Code 1860. Under harmonisation of tax laws policy of the government, similar powers have been incorporated in the Sales Tax Act 1990 and Federal Excise Act 2005.
The main reason for creation of IRS was to prevent revenue leakages which had been hitherto prevalent due to lack of coordination and data-sharing between multiple tax departments. Now through the one-window operation of IRS, not only the officers are able to cross-match data declared or obtained through multiple sources and detect tax evasion and fraud, it has also resulted in taxpayer faclitation as they now have to deal with a single department instead of multiple organisations. IRS is now responsible for collection of 85% of tax receipts collected through FBR. The attractiveness of IRS can be gauged from the fact that 47 officers of the former Customs & Excise Group most of whom belonged to BS-20 and 19 opted for IRS.
Keeping in view the demands of times, Tax Administration Reform Project (TARP) was commenced in the Federal Board of Revenue way back in 2004. The business processes, procedures and hierarchy was remodeled to change the Department to a tax friendly, responsive and efficient organisation. This restructuring also involved the re-engineering of all processes and a focus on the implementation of information technology. Prior to TARP, statutory changes in the form of a new Income Tax Ordinance 2001 had already been brought.
The Federal Board of Revenue is probably the first government organisation to have a full-fledged Human Resource Wing headed by a Director General who is usually a Grade 21 Officer of Inland Revenue Service or Pakistan Custom Service.
As a part of this strategy, modern and technologically advanced Regional Tax Offices (RTOs) were set up at all the main cities of Pakistan i.e. Karachi, Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Sialkot, Multan, Peshawar, Quetta, Abbotabad and Lahore. Recently, to meet the ever-growing need of the country to raise revenue, five new RTOs have been created at Bahawalpur, Sargodha, two additional RTOs at Karachi and one additional RTO at Lahore. Moreover three Large Taxpayer Units have also been working in Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad.
Regional Tax Officers are headed by Chief Commissioners who are usually BS-21 officers. For day-to-day operations they report to their respective Member Domestic Operations (North) and Member Domestic Operations (South). The operational jurisdiction of Inland Revenue Department is divided geographically between these two members. For policy members, Chief Commissioners are responsible to Member Direct Tax Policy and Member Indirect Tax Policy. For policy and implementation matters relating to functional divisions of field formations like Audit, Enforcement & Collection and Legal, the Chief Commissioners report to respective Members like Member Audit, Member Enforcement & Collection and Member Legal. All Members are BS-21 Officers who report to the Chairman FBR.
The Department of Inland Revenue's efforts are also supplemented by Directorate General of Inland Revenue (Internal Audit), Directorate General of Withholding Taxes, Directorate General of Intelligence & Investigation [DG I&I] and Directorate General of Training & Research (Inland Revenue). Out of these, DG I&I has been traditionally dominated by officers from Pakistan Customs Service and moves are afoot to create an independent DG I&I for Inland Revenue.
From CSS 2010, all officers will be inducted in the Inland Revenue Service instead of the Income Tax Group. In fact, the officers allocated previously to the Income Tax Group through CSS 2009 were appointed to the Inland Revenue Service (appointment letters mentioned their appointment to IRS) because by the time they joined the Civil Services Academy, IRS had been created.
In a few years time, since the commencement of TARP, the Inland Revenue Department has evolved into an efficient tax friendly organisation with a highly trained and motivated workforce.
source:Inland Revenue Service | IRS| Civil Service of Pakistan
About Inland Revenue Wing
Domestic Taxes, comprising Income Tax, Sales Tax and Federal Excise Duty
, constitute about 90% of the Revenue collected by FBR. These taxes are not only similar in essence, but also are interdependent in practice. The time tested international tenor vindicates the same. The assimilation of these taxes into a single administrative structure was imminent since long, but never in the history of the Pakistan’s Economy, was the need so great for the materialization of this change. Spurred by these exigencies and with a view to apply the modern taxation techniques to improve the tax to G.D.P ratio, the Inland Revenue Wing of the FBR was created, combining the three domestic taxes.
The organizational structure of the Inland Revenue Wing at the FBR Headquarter and their job assignments are as under:
The following sections would work under Chief IR (HQs):
I.R - Judicial Section:
• ADR matters - Income Tax/ Sales Tax
• FTO maters - Income tax / Sales Tax
• Legal matters, Appeals and Court Cases
• Parliament business
• Cabinet matters
• Any other job assigned
I.R - General:
• Matters pertaining to rewards for detection of tax evasion
• Matters pertaining to PRAL
• Matters pertaining to reforms/ restructuring/ re-organization
• Any other job assign
I.R - Coordination Section:
• Coordination on Income Tax and Sales Tax matters, including:-
• Taxpayers Registration for Income Tax and Sales Tax
• Board in Council
• Any other job assigned
I.R - Revenue Budget:
• Assignment and monitoring of collection targets of Income Tax, Sales Tax and FED.
• Matters pertaining to I. Tax/ S. Tax/ FED Jurisdiction.
• Matters pertaining to Income Tax/ Sales Tax refunds.
• Authorization of banks for collection of revenue.
• Any other job assigned.
Chief (ST/FED - Policy):
Secretary (ST & FED Budget) would work under him. His assignment would include:-
- All budget and policy matters relating to dutiable / taxable goods and services
- Post budget clarifications and SROs
- ST and FE law and procedure and interpretation thereof
- Issuance of SROs/General Orders/ Circulars/Clarifications etc.
- Clarifications of goods and services
- Valuation of goods and tariff values
- Any other job assigned
Chief (Income Tax Policy)
The following sections would work under Chief IR (Income Tax Policy):-
Secretary (ITP) :
• All Matters pertaining to income tax policy
• Clarifications on income tax policy
Secretary (WHT) :
• All matters pertaining to withholding taxes
Secretary (Exemptions)/(I.T Rules:
• All matters pertaining to Income Tax exemptions/Second Schedule and Income Tax Rules
• All matters pertaining to sales tax exemption
Secretary (International Taxes) :
• All matters pertaining to international taxes
• Income Tax and Sales Tax
• Coordination / liaison with BOI, IMF, WB, IFC, DFID, OECD (including training) etc.
• Matters relating to international tax agreements/treaties
3. In order to rationalize the work flow, compliance, enforcement, monitoring and recovery of taxes ensuring facilitation for the taxpayers in their respective areas of responsibilities an equal number of RTOs/LTUs i.e. seven (07) offices (mentioned below) are placed under each Chief (Inland Revenue) of FBR. Each Chief (IR) would be assisted by Secretary and Second Secretary, and would have the following jurisdiction:-
Chief Inland Revenue-I
Chief Inland Revenue-II
Chief Inland Revenue-III
• Matters pertaining to complaints of tax evasion and taxpayer's grievance will be dealt by Chiefs, I, II and III for their respective jurisdiction.
• Matters pertaining to PAC / DAC and external audit will be dealt by Chief IR.I.
• Monitoring of daily collections, refunds and filing of returns will be monitored by Chief IR, I, II, III for their respective jurisdictions.
• Automation and e-filling will be handled by Chief IR- III
Chiefs - IR Wing at present
1. Chief IR (HQs) Mr. Majid Qureshi
2. Chief (ST/FED - Policy) Mr. Abdul Sattar Aora
3. Chief (Income Tax - Policy) Dr. Muhammad Iqbal
4. Chief IR(Operations) Mirza Nadeem Munawar Baig
5. Chief IR(Audit) Rana Muhammad Luqman
6. Chief IR(Automation) Mr. Shafique Muhammad
Source: Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), Government of Pakistan
For further training of FBR officials,check following links:
Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), Government of Pakistan
For optional MBA : http://o.fbr.gov.pk/hrm/LocalTraining/OptionalMBA.jpg