- Ali Zafar says Rs 50bn collected through scheme so far
ISLAMABAD: Caretaker Minister for Information and Broadcasting Barrister Ali Zafar on Sunday said that the main objective of the amnesty scheme was to declare hidden assets and the extension in its deadline for a month was to bring maximum people under the tax net.
It was a great opportunity for the people to declare their assets under the scheme which had even been appreciated by the Supreme Court, he said while talking to the PTV News. He said that Rs 50 billion had been collected through the scheme so far and it was expected to rise as the deadline had been extended.
Commenting on the general election, the minister said that the election would be held on July 25, and the caretaker government would assist the Election Commission of Pakistan in holding polls in free, fair and transparent manner. He said that some constituencies and the polling stations were sensitive and the help of the army would be taken to avoid any untoward incident there.
He said that all the political parties should concentrate on their election campaigns and convince the masses regarding their manifestos. He said that the international analysts and observers would come to Pakistan and monitor the elections and every possible facility would be provided to them.
He said that the national media was enjoying freedom of expression and it should promote positive side of the country. “It is our policy to give equal time to all the political parties on Pakistan Television (PTV),” he added. To a query, he said that all national institutions including judiciary, investigation agencies and others were working within their domains and the caretaker government would not interfere in their affairs.
He said that if anybody had reservations and complains against any institution, he or she should consult the courts. To a question, the caretaker minister was of the view that Pakistan should not have been placed in the grey list of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and the international community should acknowledge the sacrifices of Pakistan in the war against terrorism.
FATF in its recent meeting in Paris, also participated by Finance Minister Dr Shamshad Akhtar, asked Pakistan to swiftly implement the plan of action to eliminate money laundering, incidents of ransom and terrorism to save the country from moving towards the blacklist, he added.
Regarding the increase in petrol prices, Barrister Ali Zafar said that no government wanted to put the burden on the general public. It was imperative to increase petroleum prices, but they might be deceased the next month, he said.
To another question, the minister, who also held the portfolio of water and power minister, said that a volunteer experts team was constituted to devise a strategy regarding water shortage and it was up to the next government to continue the policy or not.
He said that the water shortage was an important issue and concrete measures should be taken to resolve this issue. Commenting on the Afghan refugees, he said that extension of three months had been given to register the refugees from Afghanistan.