The cultural activists and icons of Bangladesh have urged people to make a habit of paying income tax for the development of the country instead of considering it a burden.
They spoke during an event organised by the National Board of Revenue (NBR) to mark Income Tax Day on Friday. They joined the programme responding to an NBR call as part of its campaign to raise awareness among the general taxpayers. “Tax payment is now turning into a habit among us. All the tax-eligible people of the country should pay tax to be a part of the development of the country,” said film actress Gulshan Ara Champa. Actor Ilias Kanchan, also president of ’Nirapad Sarak Chai’ — a road-safety movement, said tax payment is a holy duty of all tax-eligible people of the country.
He expressed his gratitude to call him to attend the programme, adding “I feel I should be present there, where any noble work is done.”
He urged all the people to be a development partner of the country by paying tax properly. Film star Ferdous said all the people of the country, especially the youths, should be aware of paying tax. The tax payment culture will help the country attain the status of a developed country from the developing one.
Kumar Bishwajit, country’s one of the popular singers, said, “The country is ours and we love it. So, we all should pay income tax from own responsibility to carry out the country’s development and other activities.”
Many other cultural celebrities, including Mostafa Sarwar Farooki, actor Khalil, Chanchal Chowdhury, Riaz, Actress Apu Biswas, Tisha and so many others were present at the programme.
Among the tax officials, Sirajul Islam, acting chairman of NBR, Zia Uddin Mahmood, member for tax admin and human resources, and Kalipada Halder, member for international taxes, were present at the programme.
Sirajul Islam said the country can make its way into the list of the developed countries if its income tax revenue increases ten-fold. He urged all to pay the income tax with sincerity and honesty.
“The income tax collection has increased 26-fold in the last three decades,” he said.
“We have created a friendly relationship with the tax payers. Now we celebrate Income Tax Day and Income Tax Fair. We have plans to do more in the future to develop a tax-compliance culture,” Sirajul said.
In the past two years income tax return submission has increased by 40 per cent, he said.
Officials of NBR also said the negative mentality among the people on income tax has been released a lot in the last few years as NBR has taken a couple of initiatives to raise a tax-compliance culture through events like Tax Day and Tax fair.
They also said most of the people now are willingly paying income tax, and such a tendency will keep soaring in the upcoming days.
Currently, there are some 3.8 million electronic tax identification numbers (e-TIN) in the country.
“Only the last year the number of total income taxpayers increased to 3.8 million from 3.2 million, which was only 1.2 million in 2014. If all come forward to pay tax, the country’s economy as well as development will be expedited in a speedier manner,” said NBR member Kalipada Haldar.
The government celebrates November 30 as Income Tax Day to raise awareness about paying the income tax. ’Development Is Achieved Through Paying Income Tax’ was the theme of the event this year.