Senate body discusses in details tax collection in FATA

ISLAMABAD: Senate Standing Committee on States and Frontier Regions (SAFRON) has discussed in detailed matters of tax collection by mineral department, legal status of lease agreements, collection and utilization of ADF/CESS/tax/rahdari from mines and minerals.

The meeting was held under the Chairmanship of Senator Hilal-ur-Rehman here at the Parliament House and was attended among others by Senators Hidayatullah, Ahmed Hassan, Sitara Ayaz, Haji Momin Khan Afridi, Sajjad Hussain Turi, Taj Mohammad Afridi, Minister for States and Frontier Regions, Secretary States and Frontier Regions and representatives from FATA Secretariat and Establishment Division, said a press release here.

Regarding overall working of FATA Minerals Exploration and Development Authority, the committee was given a briefing about the process of mines exploration and development.

The Committee was told that the process starts from prospect identification and evaluation, then a pilot plant scale study is conducted which leads to resource estimation, outsourcing of mineral deposits, licensing, leases, revenue collection, inspection of mines rescue, training and infrastructural development. The Committee was briefed that so 12 exploration licenses were issued and out of these 10 were later cancelled. At present only 2 licenses are in place.

The Senate body was given a briefing by FATA Secretariat regarding placement criteria adopted for the officers of Directorate of Monitoring and Evaluation in light of the previous discussion held in the Committee.

The meeting discussed in detail whether the project employees are to be dealt with according to the project policy or the service rules for contractual employees.

The meeting of enquiry conducted by the ministry regarding issue of appointments in TESCO. Senators decided to recommend to the Committee on Water and Power to look into the matter of holding similar enquiries of other DISCOs.