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FBR launches new complaint redressal mechanism to target corruption

FBR launches new complaint redressal mechanism to target corruption

ISLAMABAD: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has announced to launch a new complaint redressal mechanism aimed at solving complaints of taxpayers against corruption and other malpractices in Inland Revenue Field Formations.

Sharing the policy via series of messages from its Twitter handle, the FBR’s spokesman said that the new mechanism will conceal the identity of the complainant in order to allay fears regarding any backlash from an official.

“The complaints would be opened, acknowledged, and treated as per law in a highly confidential manner. The identity of the complainants would be immediately masked and encoded to safeguard them against any undue consequences,” it said.

All complaints will be received by Member (Inland Revenue-Operations) himself on an especially dedicated cellphone +92-0345-5555507 which would be in his own possession, exclusively, the tax collection body said.

The SOP for lodging and handling of complaints against IR field functionaries includes lodging of complaints by the complainant through a text message at the mentioned cell number on WhatsApp, preferably.

In WhatsApp text option, the complainant would identify himself by writing his name, address, CNIC, the case particulars and his cell phone number. Further, the complainant would write the name(s) of the official(s) or officer(s) against whom the complaint is directed along-with his/their designation, place of posting, and any other particulars, if available.

The FBR spokesman said that the complaint must be supported by some evidence such as audio or video recording, text message exchanged with the FBR functionary or any other documents, which could be attached with the text message, or subsequently sent by hard mail.

“If no such evidence is readily available, an affidavit on a legal paper, clearly spelling out the allegation and the person against whom the allegations are levelled would suffice,” he said.

Upon receipt of the complaint, a code number would be allotted to each complainant and his back-end identity data would be hidden beyond the access of field officers, the FBR said adding that the code number would help in tracking progress on the complaint and the outcomes on it.

Depending on the nature of the complaint and the evidence provided, the matter would be taken to a logical consequence in the shortest possible time, however, the spokesman said that non-specific, unsupported, or generalized complaints will not be processed.

The FBR further emphasized that for routine complaints other than corruption-related practices, taxpayers can continue to utilize the forum of Integrity Management Cell, Pakistan Citizen Portal and Helpline for redressal of their grievances besides this newly established mechanism of complaint resolution.