This is with reference to your editorial "Revamping the tax machinery" published on May 6. Unfortunately, whenever the CBR decides to increase revenues, it concentrates on those who are already paying taxes while ignoring those who indulge in massive evasion. During the days when Nawaz Sharif was prime minister, CBR officials conducting a survey of Liberty Market shops in Lahore were forced to withdraw after being threatened with dire consequences by politicians of the ruling party. This is why Pakistan is in such a sorry state today. The smugglers, the tax evaders, the unscrupulous importers indulging in misdeclaration and others like them are able to evade payment of taxes because they have friends and relatives in high places. And that is why the CBR will never touch them.

Shakir Lakhani

Published in The News on May 19, 2007