Robi undertakes to pay VAT, gets back bank accounts

Staff Correspondent | Published: 21:15, Mar 01,2018 | Updated: 23:15, Mar 01,2018

 
 

The National Board of Revenue on Thursday withdrew a freeze on the bank accounts of Robi Axiata Ltd after the mobile phone operator gave an undertaking that it would pay the revenue board the ‘evaded’ value-added tax and supplementary duty worth Tk 18.73 crore soon.
The Large Taxpayers Unit (LTU-VAT) of the NBR sent letters to managing directors of all commercial banks to unfreeze the bank accounts after receiving a letter from the mobile operator on the day.
The decision came just hours after the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court stayed for three days the High Court order that stayed the decision of the LTU to freeze the bank accounts of Robi on charge of dodging VAT and SD.
LTU on Monday imposed a freeze on operation of bank accounts of Robi for three working days.
In the following day, Robi filed a writ petition with the High Court challenging the provision of the VAT Act-1991 under which the LTU froze its bank accounts and the court stayed the NBR decision.
A four-member Appellate Division bench led by Chief Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain on Thursday passed the order to freeze Robi’s bank accounts for three days after hearing a petition filed by the NBR challenging the High Court stay order.
LTU commissioner Md Matiur Rahman in letters requested the managing directors of banks to withdraw the suspension as the telecom company gave undertaking to pay the dues immediately.
Officials said that Robi promised that it would pay the claimed VAT and SD on Sunday if the accounts were unfrozen on Thursday.
Robi chief financial officer Roni Tohme gave the written undertaking, they said.
Robi chief executive officer Mahtab Uddin Ahmed also sent an SMS (short message) to the LTU commissioner with a promise of settling the issue shortly.
Officials said that the LTU took Thursday’s decision on the undertaking given by the operator.
It will take strong position on the issue if the operator breaks the promise, they said.

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