The action taken by the Pakistan’s Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) government with great enthusiasm against Benami property owners suffered a setback in the first three months of the current year as the provinces responded poorly.
The deadline for gathering information from the provinces was set at 30 September, which was completely neglected by all four provinces. PM Imran Khan has instructed provincial govt in a letter dated 28 August to provide the data.
On July 1, the government also set up a special Directorate General of the Anti-Benami Initiative (ABI), which deals with Benami assets. In order to make the data crystal clear and relevant, these authorities were requested to provide information on the prescribed format.
It is to be scared that the lack of cooperation between the provinces could hinder efforts against Benami property owners.
According to the seen data, only one reference was made to the competent authority during the first three months following the creation of DG ABI. When contacting, DG ABI Dr. Bashirullah Khan said that the directorate will try its own efforts to identify Benami assets. According to the source, another 40,000 Benami lands are being investigated.
The Benami Law gives the right to appeal at the level of the competent authorities, the Federal Courts, the High Courts and the Supreme Court of Pakistan.
One of the tax expert says, the Benami law is a new law, and the most difficult aspect is the identification of Benami property, names of benamidar, beneficial owners, and proof of linking property with beneficial owners.