ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Economy Watch (PEW) on Wednesday said depriving the people of Gilgit-Baltistan of their full rights as citizens of Pakistan is a grave injustice which can have a negative impact on fate-changing China Pakistan Economic Corridor Project.
“The people of Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) fought the army of Maharaja of Kashmir, got region liberated and opted to become part of Pakistan in a bid to get their rights which couldn’t become a reality after almost seven decades. FBR which has failed to expand tax net or boost collections has surpassed its legal limits and slapped federal taxes on people of GB which is unjust and illegal,” said Dr. Murtaza Mughal, President PEW in a statement.
Talking to Patron of Chamber of Small Traders Shahid Rasheed Butt, PVMA leader Iftikhar Khan, former president ACCT Taimoor Aslam and Chairperson Committee for Trade and Commerce QCCI Tabassum Anwar, he said that only local authorities could collect taxes in GB unless the area was given full membership of the federation.
A legislative assembly was formed in GB in 2009 and the area was given status of a province but deprived of full membership of the federation which is a grave injustice to those who fought their way to become part of Pakistan.
Dr. Murtaza Mughal said that the legislative assembly had passed two resolutions for full acknowledgement of the region’s membership in the federation but to no avail. He said that we fully support the protests carried out against imposition of federal taxes on GB adding that the area should be given full rights and inhabitants be declared citizens of Pakistan otherwise it may hurt the revolutionary economic corridor project which will have a positive impact on the lives of every Pakistani.