GIDC legal or illegal? SC to determine
ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court on Tuesday adjourned the hearing of Gas Infrastructure Development Cess (GIDC) case till Wednesday.
A three-member bench of the apex court, headed by Justice Mushir Alam and comprised Justice Faisal Arab and Justice Mansoor Ali Shah, heard the case.
During the course of proceedings, Advocate Makhdoom Ali Khan, counsel for a private company, continued arguments from SC Karachi Registry through video-link and said industry owners considered this cess extra burden. The government did not spend money on projects, he added.
Justice Mansoor Ali Shah said there was only one difference between tax and cess as the amount of cess was collected and spent for a specific purpose.
Makhdoom Ali Khan said the government collected more than Rs297 billion in ten years. The government still had Rs266 billion, he added.
He said the government collected excessive amount for GIDC.
Justice Mushir Alam said under international agreements, Pakistan had to laid the pipeline for infrastructure.
After completion of Advocate Makhdoom Ali Khan’s arguments Advocate Rashid Anwar started his arguments and said the implementation of cess was unconstitutional. If the gas project starts, the government can re-enforce the cess, he added.
He said in this case, the government collected money and spent on various expenses.
Justice Faisal Arab said the court was determining whether the GIDC was constitutional or unconstitutional. If the GIDC was declared illegal then discussion on all other issues would be dismissed, he added.
The counsel said recovery was started even before implementation of GIDC. – APP