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Archive for category Nawaz Sharif’s Petrol Hoarding Money Making Scam

 The Strategy of Madness by Saeed A. Malik.

 The Strategy of Madness.

Saeed A. Malik.

Although Machiavelli did advocate that a Prince may sometimes profit by playing mad, I can only think of a couple of times this strategy was actually employed.
The first time it was used was by Richard Nixon during the Vietnam War. He told Melvin Liard to let the word out so that it gets to the Russian and Vietnamese leadership that the U.S President harboured such extreme hatred of communism, he could be expected to do just anything to end the Vietnam War. He wanted it bruited about that it was not beyond him, in a fit of madness, to order a nuclear strike on both the countries! He believed that if played properly this could induce both the Russians and the Vietnamese to come to the table and to end the war on U.S terms.
Melvin Laird, who was Nixon’s secretary of defense at the time, was then ordered by Nixon, to lay out plans which would give credibility to this “Madness”. But he chose to put off giving shape to any such plans by one excuse or another. He thought this strategy was too “crazy” and dangerous and could lead to a nuclear war.
But Nixon insisted, and in Oct 1969, US bombers, loaded with nuclear warheads were ordered to fly along the borders of USSR. And for three successive days, they did this.
No one is certain about the degree of fright these manoeuvres created among the Soviets, but nothing much came of them.
But the next time this strategy was employed, it did create an immense amount of fright. This was when Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, then under arrest and knowing his quarters were bugged, began issuing fusillades of invective against Zia ul Haq and his generals, enumerating all the nice things he would do to them when he returned to power.
By this stratagem, Bhutto did succeed in generating some serious fright. Serious enough to get himself hanged!
And now we are seeing Mian Nawaz Sharif, egged on by his brilliant daughter, taking a leaf out of Bhutto’s book and running with it.. Whether the result he achieves is going to be as brilliant as the one achieved by Bhutto, one cannot predict at the moment. But one can clearly see where he is headed.
He has decided that being the lion that he is, it best behoves him to roar and to keep on roaring until the roar flattens out into a bray. And he seems to have arrived at the felicitous conclusion, that without him, Pakistan stands to lose all meaning. Thus, if he cannot have Pakistan all to himself and his brood, Pakistan would be better off as a heap of rubble.

So far his crowning achievement is the tattering of a political party built of three decades of loot and plunder.

The only thing more pathetic than

Nawaz Sharif is his sorry remnants of slobbering court jesters, making excuses for him and trying to put Humpty
Dumpty

together again.

 And then there is Chaudhry Nisar–sulky little Jack Horner…the sole carrier of the flag of integrity in the late lamented PML-N…the symbol of loyal service to the party. So loyal in fact, that he has proudly confessed to advising Nawaz Sharif at every turn, of how to make away with the wealth he stole from the country he pulverized and pauperized, and therefore to escape the just deserts coming to the plunder king of a ravaged land. 
But luckily for Pakistan, whatever be its plight, Nawaz Sharif’s last attack on the state and its army seems to have put public support decisively behind the army. 
Most writers and nearly all the anchors have given to cutting him slack, have either genuinely turned, or seem too embarrassed to help him along with their usual platitudes of mercenary support. Perhaps Pakistan will see better days yet. 
Perhaps the process of accountability now underway will be an across the board process, and proceed from top to bottom, because the poor bottom, having been buffeted so long and so mercilessly, is now in a truly sorry state and needs some relief.

Saeed A. Malik. 

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NAWAZ SHARIF INTERVIEWED by BBC

 

 

Image result for Nawaz Sharif Liar Thief Money Launderer

 

 

November 4, 2017

  NAWAZ SHARIF INTERVIEWED by BBC

 If anyone wants to know what hypocrisy means and what is its practical manifestation well it does not get better than this. This joker (Muhammad Nawaz Sharif) was interviewed yesterday by BBC.  

Here is my take on his profile:

 A protege of General Ghulam Jilani and a product of General Zia’s martial law, Nawaz Sharif never tires of lecturing us on the benefits of democracy.

If anyone wants to know what hypocrisy means and what is its practical manifestation, well it does not get better than this. Watch and learn as it unfolds before you in its finest hour.

Financed by the ISI with illegal funds and propped up by the Establishment’, he says he always follows the Constitution and the Law. Maybe his dictionary is different from what we are accustomed to reading, but the Constitution for Nawaz in his eyes is a set of rules to facilitate his thievery. 

He is so bitter about the ‘PCO’ judges but is indifferent to how he himself rose to stardom on the shoulders of the so-called Establishment. Selective in his judgements, partial in his dealings and unfair in his conduct, he is not a man that even a child can trust. They first took out the clause restricting membership to the assembly for the educated only and ushered in the uncouth scum of this country, the fools we now suffer on TV with their slapstick arguments, insulting one another in the basest accusations one can ever be exposed to. Then they took away the powers of the President to dissolve the assembly, removing all checks and balances, giving themselves free license to loot and rob with wanton abandon. Now they want to remove articles 62 and 63 so that morality does not come in their way as they continue to misgovern this hapless nation.

 

Crying crocodile tears over the demise of democracy, Nawaz was directed to hold a Census by the SC just as he was made to hold Local Body Elections by them. In fact, he was forced to convene the NSC by the SC. His most memorable decisions were ones that were forced by the SC through a suo moto action on account of his reluctance to do the right thing. 

His idea of democracy is limited to circumventing the National Assembly and avoiding the parliament.  In his democracy, government funds were distributed to legislators, (just as they had been before) in the garb of development funds,  as a bribe and a reward for good behaviour. He did this as if it was his father’s country and we were all serfs who were obliged to contribute to this aberration. So much so that we are now taxed for transferring funds from our own savings to our current account while people such as him get away with tax evasion as they lecture us. He insists that 200 million voted for him knowing fully well that he got only 14% votes and that too not to him alone but to the  PML-N Party as a whole.

He talks of conspiracies, whereas he was removed for his deceit and theft; he fails to acknowledge that his Party still has two PMs: one in Azad Kashmir and the other of Pakistan; that his Party still has a Chief Minister in GB, Punjab and Baluchistan despite his wrongdoings. Where does he find that conspiracy against him and that too an international one?

Here is a man who is responsible for stabbing his colleague Junejo in the back, scuttling Benazir’s Government twice, personally going to Court to have Gillani removed, and then having the gall to say, “No PM has ever completed his term”. Never mind that his beloved Constitution does not specify the term of a PM but mentions the term of a Government only. That this small fact escapes his limited intellect, that the world over, PMs come and go, but it is the Governments that remain.

 He talks of disclosing conspiracies but his moment never arrives, he speaks of the rules of business but violates all. His nepotism and violation of merit stand out in every government institution as he corrupts all, FBR, NAB, SECP, State Bank, FIA etc. His hostility towards the judiciary is well established as he presided over the only ever physical attack on the SC.
His animosity against the military despite how he was ‘wrongly’ facilitated by them, is amply displayed by his conduct. He bites the hand that fed him. He illegally ordered the hijacking of an aircraft, got his name cleared by a kangaroo court and now reasons that you cannot hijack a plane from the ground! Well then using the same logic, ‘you cannot do a coup from courtroom as well’. He forced out General Karamat for suggesting a National  Security Council and then shamelessly constructed one later on. Claimed he had no idea about Kargil though was briefed numerous times. A compulsive liar, a trait that his ‘children’ have inherited and are famous for displaying on every occasion.

Somebody adamant in negotiating with terrorists till he was shamed in backing down after the APS incident. Politicised the police and made every department of government dysfunctional including NACTA and NAB. Conspired against his own military to bring them into an international dispute through the Dawn Leaks and have them declared as a proscribed Group facilitating terrorism; an Indian objective. A leader who bred and nurtured Chotu Gangs while restricting Ranger operations in Punjab. He did this with a straight face while he ordered such operations in Sindh with easy abandon. He collaborated with extremists and ignored the sacrifices of the likes of  Colonel Shuja Khanzada who battled for Pakistan.

 

A shameless man who has put his sons and daughter in the line of fire to save himself. Who did not stop at sullying the reputation if his own dead father to explain his own wrongdoings? A cheat and a petty crook, who ensured that government was meant for his own well-being regardless of the consequences as he misused his authority everywhere and plundered resources without remorse.

He did not stop taking credit for projects conceived well before him, such as the Gwadar Port or taking massive commissions from those that he did initiate. He mortgaged the country into an unsustainable debt, businesses closed down and migrated, exports fell and agriculture destroyed. Circular debt has become unmanageable as energy has started shutting down. Ghost schools haunt the nation and no hospital in the country is good enough for him or his own family as they flee to other countries for medical attention. Today India prides itself on giving visas to Pakistanis needing medical help.

A PM who during his tenure, never made a single meaningful statement on Kashmir, who tried to facilitate India where ever he could. Protected the terrorist Kulbashan while collaborating with Sajjan Jindal in his personal businesses at the cost of the country. Insisted on running the foreign affairs himself where he woefully disgraced us in Saudi Arabia as he sat like a poodle while India earned accolades and we were insulted over the War on Terror despite our sacrifices. Tried to pimp his way into relevance into the Saudi-Qatar affair where he was never taken seriously, just as he was not when he unfolded his chit to read out to Obama, that “Dal and Qeema” awaited him in Pakistan.

Now he asks, “What did I do?”  (Mujhe kiyun nikaala?)

Mr PM, it is what you did not do: Govern Pakistan, the only mandate given to you and your band of thieves. 

You failed us internationally, you let us down before our friends and enemies alike, and you robbed us.

May the Lord have mercy on you and your soul.

– Lt-Gen (Retd) Tariq Khan

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Disastrous decade of democracy sorry state of the state-Al Pakistan by Simon Templar

Disastrous decade of democracy sorry state of the state-Al Pakistan

by

Simon Templar

Thug life is a term used by gangsters to glorify their law breaking,heady crime sprees.

Nothing describes the misrule of two successive, so called democratically elected governments in the unstable, underdeveloped 200 million strong south Asian state of Pakistan.

How thieves, plunderers and freebooters came to rule this nuclear armed state is a sad tale in itself.

Ruled by military General Pervez Musharraf who took over in a military coup in 1999, the country became a close US ally after 9/11 and witnessed an era of growth and stability under military rule.

However when Musharaf reached his limits of flexibility, it was decided by the US and British to force him bring back the two tainted, condemned political leaders in exile and to wash away all their sins under a dubious order in the name of national reconciliation.

As in the Bond movie, Quantum of Solace, there was also a hungry, eager, more flexible General waiting in the Wings to replace him, and Deputy Chief Kayani used Military intelligence and a judges restoration movement to cripple the erstwhile strongman, now out of favor with the US.

A final thumbs down from the US Ambassador compelled Musharraf to resign and after the mysterious, unsolved murder of Benazir Bhutto, her thuggish husband, the upstart, criminal uneducated, corrupt and much reviled Asif Zardari came to power.

The deal with the West was that we bring you back, wash away your past sins and you squeeze the Army.

The game began and new Chief Kayani turned a blind eye, as he had brought the devil to sup at the table and was also busy improving his impoverished families financial condition.

So well did this team work that General Kayani got an unprecedented 3 year second term, Zardari became a billionaire, Kayani from rags to millionaire and the country went to the dogs.

The US with its two boys in place, in charge of the Presidency and military, violated Pakistani sovereignty and physical boundaries at will, using drones, choppers, covert assassin’s and whatever they chose.

As per the unholy charter of kleptocracy, Sharif kept silent during Zardari’s plunder and he returned the favor after Sharif took over in 2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Simple math, over invoice $ 50 billion of Chinese funded projects-whether needed or not- by ten percent, sign sovereign guarantees, leave future generations to pay off horrifying debts and pocket 5% off the top!

Walk away with a cool $ 2.5 billion dollars.Astonishingly simple as it is audacious.

Where Zardari was a street thug, looting millions, for ing neighbors to sell their properties on the cheap, the plunderers from Punjab, whose father made pots and cooking utensils with his bare hands are now certified dollar billionaires thanks to massive bank defaults,and international cuts commissions and kickbacks.

Wow! Wonderful, just one mistake…Sharif, egged on by vicious anti military Advisers like Junior Minister for Foreign Affairs Syed Tariq Fatimi, kept on targeting the by now restive and powerful Pakistan military.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The leakage of information pertaining to thousands of offshore companies incorporated in Panama signalled the end for the strangely absent Sharif regime.

Perhaps the most corrupt and worse administered government in the history of Pakistan..certainly the most hypocritical.

Destroying the civil service structure, promoting nepotism, turning state servants especially in the Punjab into glorified pimps and facilitators.

 

Nawaz Sharif ‘s Well Hidden Taliban Connection-Taliban did Nawaz Sharif’s Dirty Work-While, US looked the Other Way-Rana Sanaulla, Nawaz Sharif’s  Killer Interior Minister Connected to Punjabi Taliban

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One poor martied lady was famously peddled by her husband out to Sharif, then his younger brother and in turn was rewarded with top administrative positions for his immoral shamelessness.

Functioning without statutory, mandated positions such as State Ombudsman, National Tax Collector, Head of the Audit Service and even without the Governor of the State Bank.

Burgeoning debt,increasingly hostile borders, declining exports, a dysfunctional government, falling stock market and collapsing currency could not shake Sharif out of his stupor.

On the ropes, with his family corruption the main story in every paper, every channel and on social media, he chose to plod on shamelessly, trying one corrupt lawyer after another in a futile attempt to cover his tracks.

Described as a sicilian mafiosi by the worthy judges of the top constitutional court, Sharif scraped the bottom of the barrel, hiring the immoral Raja Salman Akram, known to have defended Zardaris drug dealing Prime Minister, all to no avail.

Functioning without a Foreign minister for four years, and appointing idiots as top envoys, the joke is on Sharif as he is now left with no friends to bail him out as before.

His Saudi patrons distanced themselves from their pet poodle after Sharif was unable to prevail upon his military who very sensibly refused to go and fight alongside Saudi troops in Yemen.

Indians and Americans have realised he cannot dominate his military and the Turks and Chinese know him and his tribe as crooked, slimy money grabbers.

Despite holding office for years, Sharif has paid no attention to healthcare, education, rule of law or job creation, focusing purely on shady, unnecessary projects providing easy kickbacks.

Now decades of money laundering, defaulted bank loans and millions in off shore accounts and overseas properties stand to be exposed for what they are, the loot and plunder from 190 million poor uneducated helpless souls who are forced to sell or kill their children due to lack of justice, poverty and a gloomy future.

The question is how will things unfold? Will the shameless, immoral, hypocritical kleptocrats escape yet again to lick their wounds and enjoy their boots abroad or shall they deservedly meet the fate of another erstwhile billionaire, the late unlamented Colonel Qaddafi who died bloodied and screaming in the street as his engeful subjects beat him to death?

The author is a geostrategist based in Brussels.

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NASEEM ASHRAF & IQBAL ASHRAF & MUSADAK MALIK: THE CROOK BROTHERS: New NBP Chief Rewarded for Sanctioning Rs. 500 Million to Sharifs’ Brothers Sugar Mill in 1990s

 

BROTHERS MASTER CROOKS & DESTROYERS OF PAKISTAN VIA CORRUPTION:

NASEEM ASHRAF & IQBAL ASHRAF 

with

Dirty Fingers in the Cookie Jar of Every Government

New-NBP-chief-rewarded-for-sanctioning-Rs500m-to-the-Sharifs'-sugar-mill-in-1990s-salman-shahbaz-sharif-ahmed-iqbal-ashraf

By Sarmad Ali

Islamabad, Jan 28 (Pak Destiny) The Nawaz Sharif government has rewarded Syed Ahmad Iqbal Ashraf by appointing him president of National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) for his services – sanctioning Rs500 million loan to the Ramzan Sugar Mill of the Sharifs in 1990s.
“Ahsraf has also been given a task to settle down Rs3billion loan of Itifaq Foundry which it had taken from the NBP in the 1990s,” the sources said.
The sources said Ashraf was the regional director of NBP when he had sanctioned Rs500 million to the Sharif’s Ramzan Sugar Mill when they needed money. Salman Shahbaz had asked his uncle to appoint Ashraf.
A chartered accountant by profession, Ahmad Iqbal is a brother of Dr Nasim Ashraf, the former minister for National Commission for Human Development (NCHD) and president of Pakistan Cricket Board in General Musharraf’s government. Nasim Ashraf brought in Musadak Malik, a big time crook, whose connections with a  super power are highly suspicious. After Nasim Ashraf and Iqbal Ashraf absconded from Pakistan, they left their master-mind Musadak Malik to be an Advisor to Nawaz Sharif. This unemployed US Pharmacist, still a US Citizen has a gift of gab and can through use of this gift he wiggled his way  into Nawaz Sharif’s Cabinet as an his Advisor.
He replaced Dr Asif Brohi who had three years to reach the retirement age.
A total of 51 candidates had applied for the post. The selection was originally to be made by a high-powered commission comprising Federal Tax Ombudsman and two academicians from Agha Khan University and Lahore University of Management Sciences. – Pak Destiny

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Ruin comes when… HUZAIMA BUKHARI AND DR IKRAMUL HAQ

 

 

Ruin comes when…

By
HUZAIMA BUKHARI AND DR IKRAMUL HAQ

 

 

 

Ruin comes when the trader, whose heart is lifted up by wealth, becomes ruler-Plato in Republic Since November 1990, when Muhammad Nawaz Sharif became Prime Minister of Pakistan for the first time, the culture of loot, plunder, corruption, tax evasion and money laundering was legalised through obnoxious laws like Protection of Economic Reforms Act, 1992 and its likes giving a free hand to criminals that no question would be asked by tax officials and functionaries of Federal Investigative Agency (FIA) for acquiring and using dirty money. His three stints as Prime Minister and years as a minister and chief minister in the Punjab can safely be labeled as “rule of a trader” whose heart is infested with the insatiable greed of amassing wealth, expanding family-owned business empire at the expense of the national exchequer and other business houses. This fact was also noted by a judge of High Court in a reported case details of which are summarized below:

In Messrs Pak Ocean and Others v Government of Pakistan through Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Central Secretariat, Islamabad and others 2002 PTD 2850, the petitioners challenged the imposition of regulatory duty on re-meltable iron scrap, excluding bundled and shredded scrap and the reduction in the rate of duty on bundled and shredded scrap as unlawful, arbitrary, unreasonable and ultra vires Articles 4, 18, 24 and 25 of the Constitution. They contended that the said imposition of regulatory duty through Statutory Regulatory Order (SRO) was aimed at making their imported scrap very expensive as compared to the imports by big businessmen in the form of bundled and shredded scrap. According to petitioners, the adverse SROs were issued “to solely benefit the owners of the furnaces who are largely imported of shredded scrap”. In the judgment, there is a direct indictment against the House of Sharifs, contained in Para 50 that reads as under:

Khalid Anwar has mainly placed reliance on the judgment in the case of Ittefaq Foundry v. Federation of Pakistan, PLD 1990 Lahore 121. In the cited case it was contended that the petitioner was a producer of billets and that there were other producers, producing ingots, the end-product whereof was same. In order to economically ruin the petitioner in the cited case, duty structure was changed in the year 1989 without reasonable justification and the change in the duty structure was against the rights guaranteed in Articles 4, 18 and 25 of the Constitution. The contention of the petitioner was accepted and the relief was allowed. However, with the change in fortunes, the persons were feeling the pinch of oppression in the case of Ittefaq Foundry v. Federation of Pakistan, became the rulers and thereafter, they very easily and conveniently managed to forge the treatment given to them and got the duty structure changed through notification assailed in these petitions, thereby deriving huge undue benefit at the cost of total destruction of the small importers and traders of the scrap in loose form.

The above paragraph confirms beyond any doubt how traders as rulers have been playing havoc with the national exchequer and minting billions through tax concessions secured vide SROs thus destroying their competitors. Yet in the presence of these undeniable facts and court ruling the State agencies/institutions like FBR, FIA, ECP, NAB etc plead helplessness and claiming “lack of evidence” to proceed against the tax evaders and plunderers of national wealth.

 

 

 

In two articles, ‘Trail of hidden wealth’, Business Recorder, May 6, 2016 and ‘Tough times for PM’, Business Recorder, May 13, 2016, incontrovertible evidence was produced to show abuse of Protection of Economic Reforms Act, 1992 to legalise ill-gotten wealth, blatant violations of tax laws by the family of the Prime Minister and wrong declarations made by him in papers submitted to the Elections Commission of Pakistan (ECP) in 2013 as well as false/misdeclarations in returns submitted to the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR). Astonishingly, the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) still claims that “no evidence” is available to initiate proceedings against the rulers of the day.

 

 

 

The House of Sharifs has a proven track record of destroying competitive business houses but appeasing traders that politically back them and pose no threat to their “empire”. They have been passing laws to protect tax avoiders and were also beneficiaries of the same. Obviously, tax compliance does not suit the huge business empire of Nawaz/Shahbaz and family. It is not surprising that Nawaz Sharif during his third term as Prime Minister has already announced three tax amnesty schemes and now another is in the offing. In 2013, 2015 and 2016, he approved tax amnesties for tax evaders, which failed to mop up untaxed money.

On the very first day of 2016, the Prime Minister took pride in announcing a tax amnesty scheme and publically revealed that he had been asking his Finance Minister to come up with something “worthwhile” that could be “acceptable” to traders who had not been filing tax returns!! Lamentably, as Prime Minister, he openly vowed to protect the accumulation of untaxed (black) money. He never minces words for announcing schemes patronizing tax evaders and encouraging plunder of national wealth. This perhaps supports the allegations of the Opposition that he and his own family are guilty of these crimes as well, so he wants amnesty and immunities for all.

Nawaz Sharif is reportedly keen to launch yet another tax amnesty scheme knowing that his 2013 tax amnesty shockingly fetched a negligible amount of Rs 88 million from about 3000 persons! Much-publicised and negotiated with consensus (sic) Voluntary Tax Amnesty for traders, the deadline for which was extended many times, could not lure them and only 3205 got registered against the agreed target of one million new filers!

Businessmen and other citizens say they pay income tax and sales tax with electricity bills and mobile use. The rulers should not insist for tax returns as they have stacked assets worth billions of dollars abroad. For electioneering, the rulers get generous donations (chanda) from business magnates and after winning pay back through tax amnesties. Together they make billions through rent-seeking, tax evasion, and remit abroad the major portion of such ill-gotten income. Traders who have been investing billions in property in Pakistan and places like Dubai never bother to pay taxes due from them to run the State. PML(N) protects them!

According to FBR’s own study, the contribution of traders in income tax is just 0.5% and in sales tax about 1%. Like powerful absentee landlords, the traders pay meager income tax. However, they successfully keep revenue authorities at bay due to the powerful political influence they wield. The history of income tax law is fraught with provisions that were amended and/or re-amended on account of the traders’ shutter-down threats or violent demonstrations, causing legislators to get cold feet and succumbing to their demands. The governments civil and military alike have been extending amnesty schemes to tax evaders to whiten their undeclared incomes and ill-gotten wealth, for example, Ayub Khan’s Tax Amnesty Scheme of 1958, 1969 Tax Amnesty of Yahya Khan, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto’s Tax Amnesty, Self-Assessment Schemes of the 1970s, Special National Fund Bonds or Simplified Self-Assessment Scheme of the 1980s, Foreign Currency Accounts or Foreign Exchange Bearer Certificates of the 1990s, Amnesty Scheme of 2008 by PPP government, three amnesties schemes of Nawaz-Dar since 2013, various other millennium immunity schemes and the perpetual scheme in the form of the infamous section 111(4) of the Income Tax Ordinance, 2001.

Irrespective of what would be the fate of any new tax amnesty scheme, the question that emanates from the prevalent bizarre state of affairs is why traders have been defiant to file tax returns and sales tax statements? There cannot be any one definitive answer because the matter goes down to innumerable factors having roots in certain motivations as well as the draconian image of FBR. The sole responsibility for trust deficit cannot be assigned to FBR. The traders pay millions as Zakat and donations but abhor paying taxes. The general argument is that government spends money callously and for the benefit of elites.

The sanctity to make unrestrained (excessive) profits (munafaa) by traders has the authority of certain clerics. The traders borrow money at exorbitant rates from private parties but avoid banks to hide from the eyes of tax people. The lenders also remain tax-free and borrowers accumulate untaxed money by fleecing masses. There are no effective controls to check unscrupulous traders from charging unreasonable prices.

The clergy in general, with a few exceptions, plead against paying taxes and ask traders to pay Zakat. Resultantly, the greed to amass wealth becomes an obsession violating all social and moral obligations. Thus, adulterating eatables, incorrect measurements, selling defective or sub-standard products, misrepresenting, providing unprofessional services, defrauding customers, refusing to honor guarantees or other duties as abiding by governmental laws regarding trade or payment of taxes, are not considered immoral or violating laws.

All is fair, as long as one is able to stuff one’s pockets with paper money and then have the audacity to squander it in an ostentatious display of wealth and power. Such behavior is visible in the length and breadth of our entire society. Apart from an ignorable number, the majority of traders from a petty fruit/vegetable vendor to the owner of large departmental stores leave no stone unturned to swindle an unassuming customer as well as the concerned government agents with whose connivance they easily manage to evade their national duties.

Non-compliance of tax obligation is a grim reality of Pakistan. The State has failed to fulfill its basic obligations-protection of life and property, health, education, housing and transport etc. In our peculiar milieu, the government needs to educate the masses through the same platform that is used by clergy. The mosques should be under state control, headed by trained teachers who are adequately paid the same model exists in a majority of Muslim countries. Primary education should start from the mosques.

The trader-mullah nexus for non-payment of taxes and huge amounts extracted for madrassahs are issues that need to be debated and handled democratically. These are critical for our existence as a democratic country lest we continuously slide towards mullocracy, extremism, and militancy that have disastrous effects for societies, and are destructive to humanity. Tax defiance and corruption in Pakistan are closely linked with rulers-cum-traders-who are unscrupulous and their greed is unbound. Plato aptly said in the Republic that ruin comes for a country when traders whose hearts are filled with greed become rulers. This is what we are witnessing in today’s Pakistan.

(The writers, lawyers, and partners in Huzaima, Ikram & Ijaz, are Adjunct Faculty at Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS).)

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