DBA challenges imposition of Property Tax in the state

MIRPUR: District Bar Association (DBA) Mirpur has challenged the recent property tax imposed in the State in Azad Jammu & Kashmir High Court on Friday.

The petitioners including President DBA Ch. Shabir Sharifee, Secretary General Madasser Iqbal, ex-President of the DBA Ch.

Muhammad Sideeque, and others contended in their petition that Azad Jammu & Kashmir Legislative Assembly have no constitutional and legal powers to pass the Property Tax Act 2015 and Property Tax Rules 2015 under the Interim Constitution of AJK.

“Rather Azad Jammu & Kashmir Council, upper house of the AJK Parliament, enjoys this constitutional and legal power to impose, withdraw or make any amendment in imposition of the taxes”, the petitioner added.

It has further been challenged in the petition that the people of Azad Jammu & Kashmir are already regularly paying income tax under section 15 of Income Tax Ordinance 2001. Whereas Azad Jammu & Kashmir Legislative Assembly has re-imposed the same income tax upon the rental income through her self-conceived under section 2 of the sub section 3 of the Property Tax Act 2015.

“This act of the AJK Legislative  Assembly falls in the category of the imposition of double taxation”, the petitioner contended adding that it was absolutely contradictory to the law and constitution – since law and constitution also do not allow double taxation.

“It is also the violation of basic human rights mentioned in section 4 of the Act 1974, the interim constitution of AJK”, the petitioners underlined.

The petitioners in their petition said it was the imposition of property tax upon the people / concerned owners of the properties in AJK who are already paying income tax on their earnings through their properties.

Chairman Azad Jammu & Kashmir Council (Prime Minister of Pakistan), AJK government through Secretary Finance, Department of Justice, Law and Parliamentary Affairs and Department of Human Rights, AJK Council through Secretary Kashmir Affairs, Income Tax, Inland Revenue and Provincial Taxes of Azad Jammu & Kashmir, Chairman and Deputy Chairman AJK Accountability Bureau have been made parties in the case to respond into the court of law on the writ petition.