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Shaheen Air charged with tax evasion of Rs. 955 million

The Collectorate of Customs Adjudication-I has issued show-cause notices to Shaheen Air International Limited Chairman Ehsan Ali Sehbai, Procurement & Logistics Director Syed Yousaf, Airline Operations Director Faisal Rafiq, Legal Services Director S M Anwar, Shaheen Air International Limited Assistant Legal Advisor Abriaz Ali Khan and scrap dealers Altaf and Basharat on their alleged involvement in Rs 4,145 million tax evasion by importing 47 aircraft illegally against different lease agreements and dismantling, removing and scrapping of 12 air crafts.

Shaheen Air International (SAI) has been dragged into the FIR by the Large Taxpayers Unit (LTU) Karachi after the airline failed to pay the dues Federal Excise Duty (FED) reaching Rs.955.05 million. The decision was taken by the Commissioner Shamsuddin Qazi, Deputy Commissioner Anees Memon and additional Commissioner E&C Nisar Ali Barki, the FIR was filed against Shaheen Air International for non-payment of government dues FED amounting Rs955.055 million. However, the FED amount was deducted from passengers.

According to the FIR, the company has tried to evade taxes and committed tax fraud which is defined under the sections of Sales Tax Act 1990 and FED Act, 2005. LTU the most efficient and the largest revenue collecting unit Karachi has also attached bank accounts of Shaheen Air and sealed the head office of the company in order to recover the FED collected on international and domestic tickets from the passengers. Despite collecting the revenue from passengers the company did not deposit the same amount into the national exchequer by due date last year.

According to the sources, the airline is closed now and Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) is also planning to auction their aircraft and recover the amount from them. Shaheen Air International has been facing so many financial and internal management issues for the past few months, the company had issues with CAA over the dispute of non-payment dues, the CAA also suspended flight operations, of the airline last year. It was also reported that Shaheen Air’s owners flee abroad after getting these troubles from the authorities.

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