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SA session: Resolution opposes federal tax proposals

25 June, 2013

Peoples Party MPA, Sharmila Farooqi speeches with the reference to the Sindh Budget 2013-14 during assembly session held at Sindh Assembly building.
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KARACHI: Reiterating the collection of sales tax is provincial subject, the Sindh Assembly on Monday moved a resolution in the house and strongly opposed the Federal Government's move to change definition of the tax.

PPP's Jam Khan Shoro, provincial ministers, Nisar Ahmed Khuhro and Sharjeel Inam Memon and other lawmakers jointly moved the resolution. Members of the MQM, PML-F, and Pakistan Tahreek-e-Insaf also supported it.

The resolution read, "This house resolves and recommends to the Government of Sindh to approach the Federal Government to withdraw the amendment proposed in the Finance Bill to amend the definition of Sales Tax on Services. The Sales Tax on Services is a provincial subject as per the Constitution of Pakistan, 1973, which was further clarified in the 18th Constitutional Amendment.

It is also resolved that imposition of federal excise duty on financial services as proposed in the Federal Bill was unconstitutional and should be withdrawn by the Federal Government.

The house also passed two other resolutions before resuming general discussion on the budget-2013-14. One was tabled by MQM's Khalid Bin Wilayat and other party members, to condemn murder of their colleague, Sajid Qureshi along with his son, Waqas Qureshi in North Nazimabad.

"This cowardly act of terrorism is not only a conspiracy to destabilise the peace of Karachi but also against the solidarity of Pakistan", the resolution stated, and demanded arrest of culprits involved, their facilitators and perpetrators. Second resolution was moved by PPP's Sharmila Farooqi and other female lawmakers to pay tribute to the party's assassinated leader, Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto on her 60th birth anniversary.

Later participating in the budget discussion, the PPP members voiced in support of the budget while opposition lawmakers criticised it for various reasons. The house witnessed uproar like situation during speeches female members of different parties including Sharmila and PML-N's Soarath Thebo and PML-F's Nusrat Saher Abbasi. They criticised each other's parties and its leadership.

Sharmila also criticized PTI during her speech. Referring to PML-N, she said the 'lion of Raiwand' had even snatched meal from poor by imposing GST.

Female lawmakers of PML-N, PTI and PML-F strongly protested over Sharmila's remarks. Syed Sardar Ahmed of MQM also appeared discontented of the pandemonium, and advised the lawmakers to focus on Sindh budget and come up with proposals. "This is not a talk show of a TV channel", he remarked.

Soarath Thebo of PML-N accused previous PPP government for selling two islands of Sindh; Dingi and Bhindar. She said Sindh suffered loss of Rs50 billion in the outgoing financial year because of the PPP.

Heer Sohu of MQM said peace could not be restored in Karachi only by making allocation of funds in the budget, adding the adoption of necessary measures will make an impact.

PML-F's Mahtab Akbar Rashdi suggested that funds allocated for Rangers should be utilised for improving performance of Sindh police. She said allocation of funds to Rangers was not enough as its performance should also be evaluated.

NPP's Masroor Jatoi said PPP-led government was spending a huge amount for development of Thar coalfield every year for last five years without yielding any outcome. Earlier the house adopted one-minute silence to express its sympathies with foreign tourists gunned down in Gigit-Baltistan.

End.

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