Ex-Pata areas near Mansehra liable to pay tax, SC rules.

ISLAMABAD -- Residents of the erstwhile tribal area adjoining Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's Mansehra district were liable to pay tax like other citizens after 2011, when the then president changed its status to a non-tribal area, suggested a Supreme Court order released on Friday.

'There is a distinction between the power exercised by the president under Article 247(6) of the Constitution, which determines the status of an area, with that exercised under Article 247(3), which may be used to extend any particular law to a tribal area,' Justice Qazi Faez Isa said in the judgement.

Justice Isa headed a three-judge bench that heard the case. The other two judges were Justice Yahya Afridi and Justice Jamal Khan Mandokhail.

The order passed by the president under Article 247(6) meant that the area lost its status as a tribal area, Justice Isa emphasised, adding that once the president passed the order, any tax levied or deducted as per the Income Tax Ordinance (ITO) of 2011 was leviable or payable, because the ordinance automatically stood extended to the area.

Apex court dismisses appeal of resident who argued he was wrongly taxed for 2011-13

According to the Supreme Court judgement, clause 3 of Article 247 - titled 'Administration of Tribal Areas' - of the Constitution at that time read: 'No act of ... [parliament] shall apply to any Federally Administered Tribal Area [Fata] or to any part thereof, unless the president so directs, and no act of [parliament] or a provincial assembly shall apply to a Provincially Administered Tribal Area [Pata], or to any part thereof, unless the governor of the province in which the tribal area is situated, with the approval of the president, so directs; and in giving such a direction with respect to any law, the president or, as the case may be, the governor, may direct that the law shall, in its application to a tribal area, or to a specified part thereof, have effect subject to such exceptions and modifications as may be specified in the direction.'

Similarly, Article 247(6) read: 'The president may, at any time, by order, direct that the whole or any part of a tribal area shall cease to be tribal area, and such order may contain such incidental and...

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