Countrywide weeklong income tax fairs organised by the National Board of Revenue ended on Tuesday amid overcrowded response from taxpayers and setting new records in number of tax returns submission and service recipients.
Taxpayers from different socio-economic groups thronged the fair venues including the central one at NBR’s under-construction headquarters at Agargaon in Dhaka for payment of income tax, filing tax returns and receiving tax related other services.
In the face of huge rush, the revenue board forced to keep the Dhaka venue open almost till mid-night though it was scheduled to close at 8pm.
The number of taxpayers and service recipients during seven days of fairs across the country exceeded the figures of last year.
According to the NBR data, record number of 2.69 lakh taxpayers paid Tk 1,791 crore in income tax along with filing tax returns while 9.44 lakh people received services until Monday at the fairs that began on November 1.
In seven days of the last year’s fair, around 1.95 lakh taxpayers paid Tk 2,130 crore in tax at the fair while 9.29 lakh visitors received services from tax officials at the fair.
On Tuesday, taxpayers were seen waiting in long queues at Dhaka venue for filing tax returns and receiving income tax ID cards, introduced for the first time in the country.
Many taxpayers, however, were found unaware
about the uses of the card but they told New Age that the card could be used at least as identity as a taxpayer.
Many of them left the fair venue without receiving ID cards as they could not reach even near the booths dedicated for issuing the card after waiting for even more than one hour.
Shahriar Shipon, a private employee, told New Age that he left the queue after one and half hour sensing possible unusual delay to get to the booths.
‘I will receive the ID card later from the field level tax office,’ he said.
Officials of the NBR said that they would provide ID cards from tax circles, field level income tax offices, from Thursday to those who failed to obtain it from the fair venue.
Tax officials made constant announcement in loud speaker urging taxpayers for receiving ID card from tax circles avoiding crowd at the fair, they said.
It was seen that many taxpayers could not manage space even at floor for filing tax returns and they were forced to wait for long time to complete all procedures.
Tax officials found difficulties to handle huge crowd on the last day of the fair.
Taxpayers also expressed dissatisfaction about the space management, saying that the fair venue seems too small to handle of such huge visitors.
A high official of the NBR said that they further extended the fair time to 10pm.
But the fair venues would remain open until the last visitor receives services, he said.
The field offices will also receive tax returns from November 12 in the same environment like tax fair while Income Tax Week will be observed on November 24-30, he said.
The seven-day fair began on November 1 at eight divisional cities while four-day fair at 56 districts, two-day fair at 34 Upazilas and one-day mobile fair at 71 Upazilas held on November 1-7.
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