ISLAMABAD: A wave of disappointment and perplexity prevailed among top officers of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) after the decision of the government to give additional charge of revenue secretary to Finance Secretary Tariq Bajwa. “There is great resentment among FBR officials over the decision, as it will have a bad impact on tax collection, as in the past Bajwa had failed to achieve the target,” an officer told Daily Times on the condition of anonymity. Sources said that when the FBR already had some officers working in BPS-22, how the government could import another officer from “outside” and place him above those senior officers. Tariq Bajwa remained the FBR chief from July 2, 2013 to November 17, 2015. Sources said that the government’s action would surely hamper the FBR’s working, especially at a time when the department was already facing around Rs 150 billion tax collection deficit in the first seven months of the current fiscal year. The FBR has so far collected Rs 1,757 billion tax, while it has to collect Rs 1,864 billion in the next four and a half months. Now, the tax department has to collect Rs 466 billion every month to meet the annual target of Rs 3,621 billion, which is Rs 517 billion more than the previous year’s target. It may be mentioned here that the FBR had achieved the previous year’s target of Rs 3,104 billion. Sources told Daily Times that previously, the government had given the additional charge of the revenue division to then finance secretary Dr Waqar Masood, but the decision was reversed after some days. It is pertinent to mention here that the Inland Revenue officers of the FBR belonging to Karachi and Lahore had observed a pen down strike on Friday. Officials demanded that the government take back the decision regarding Tariq Bajwa. Sources said that differences among senior officials of the revenue board increased following the government decision to give acting charge of the FBR chairmanship to Dr Muhammad Irshad. A few members are actively lobbying for this slot, as they believe that they have plenty of time in their retirement and they fulfil the requirements of experience for the chairman’s post. It may be mentioned here that the tax department has started making preparations for the next budget. According to the Finance Ministry, the budget will be present by the end of May 2017.