AJK – Jan 1, 2020: As a leading telecom and digital services provider in the country, Telenor Pakistan is committed to serve the people of Azad Jammu and Kashmir and continue to provide them with latest telecom and digital solutions in order to connect them to what matters most.
Recently, the Inland Revenue Department AJK sealed multiple Telenor Pakistan network sites over a disputed tax demand resulting in services disruption to majority of the population of AJK, thus adversely impacting the lives and livelihood of the people. In a latest development, the AJK High Court has granted a stay and suspended all coercive actions initiated by the tax authority. However, the tax authorities are still not desealing our sites and not allowing the network to be restored. In the meantime, we are doing our best to ensure provision of services to our valued customers.
Commenting on the situation Irfan Wahab Khan, CEO Telenor Pakistan said, “First, I would like to apologise to our valued customers in AJK who have borne the brunt of such drastic measures by the tax authorities and the resulting inconvenience they faced due to network unavailability. The lack of concern for the people during the ongoing pandemic and tough weather conditions is disheartening. We are committed more than ever to the people of AJK and thank our loyal customers for being part of Telenor Pakistan family.”
“Telecommunications is an essential service, even to the extent that under the Telecom Act interfering with telecom services is unlawful and punishable. We hope that the Prime Minister of AJK will take notice of this situation and advise the tax authorities to operate under the purview of the law.” He further added.
Telenor Pakistan is one of the largest investors and a leading taxpayer, and is proud to play its role in spearheading digitalisation in the country. Taking such extreme measures against law abiding and responsible corporate citizens without following the due process of law will send the wrong message and discourage investment in the country.
Telenor Pakistan understands the importance of the taxes it pays in supporting the development and growth of communities and therefore takes a responsible approach with respect to its tax obligations. We believe that a tax system must be stable, transparent, and predictable to create an investment friendly environment that will support ease of doing business and the country’s growth.