Pakistan’s tax employees announce pen down strike for salary raise

Pakistan’s tax employees announce pen down strike for salary raise

KARACHI: Employees of apex tax collecting agency of Pakistan i.e. Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) have announced pen down strike on June 17, 2022 (Friday) demanding raise in salary and allowances.

Sources in All Pakistan FBR employees said that they had announced a pen down strike all over the country on June 17, 2022 to highlight their demand for a pay raise and increase in fuel allowance.

READ MORE: FBR assigned tax collection target of Rs7 trillion in 2022/2023

The employees have been demanding to de- freeze there IJP (Internal Job Posting) allowance since many years, but the same has not been approved even in this budget.

The officers are demanding a pay raise in terms of special Revenue allowance and increased fuel allowance, being the sole federal breadwinning organization that has been achieving its budgetary targets for quite a few years.

The aggrieved informed that all the demands have been forwarded to Chairman FBR through proper channel.

READ MORE: FBR extends working hours on May 30 – 31 for tax collection

The officials of FBR were ensured a pay raise in this budget but the same was removed from the bill at the eleventh hour, which caused distress among the employees.

It should be noted over here that recently Prime Minister had de-freezed the allowance of all employees of the president house and prime Minister’s secretariat, but the government denied the right to FBR employees.

Several other Federal Government institutions have been given a pay raise and increase in various allowances in the recent budget but the same has been denied to the FBR workforce despite the fact that they have been showing exceptional performance, with regards to achieving their budgetary targets.

Though Finance Minister Miftah Ismail has congratulated the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) and its Chairman Asim Ahmed for collecting Rs490 billion revenue in May 2022 through his twitter account, yet the long standing demand of de-freezing the IJP allowance of the officials, and that of pay raise was overlooked in the budget.

READ MORE: FBR chairman replaced despite massive collection growth

It should be noted that the federal budget 2020-2021 clearly stated that FBR revenues increased by 17 per cent and the government was on track to achieve the revised target of Rs 4,800 billion, which was then achieved accordingly. Likewise in this financial year 2021-2022, the net revenue collection grew to Rs5,349 billion during July-May (2021-22) as against the collection of Rs.4,164 billion during July-May (2020-21) with a 28.4 percent growth.

This highlights the efforts put in by the officials of FBR in achieving their budgetary targets.

It shall also be highlighted that the FBR employees have been observing Saturday as a working day for the past six months unlike all the other federal and provincial government organizations, and these employees always go an extra mile to perform their duties.

It is because of FBR’s efforts that the government exchequer receives all the needed revenues, and the importance of this organization cannot be denied at all.

READ MORE: FBR surpasses collection target for July – April FY22

It is ironic that FBR employees are deprived of their basic right amid inflation crisis.

The aggrieved have made clear that if their demands are not met, they will observe a pen down strike for even longer periods, as they are finding it difficult to make both ends meet, and  because there is a huge disparity between their and other institution’s salaries.