The week-long Income Tax Fair-2017 kicked off in the capital and other parts of the country with a revenue collection target of more than Tk 3,000 crore in a bid to enable individual taxpayers to gather and file returns and complete tax procedures all in one spot.
The 8th edition of the annual Income Tax Fair began today in a total of 20 spots including in the capital, other seven divisional cities, UNB reports.
This time, the Fair will be held in 167 spots in 103 upazilas up from 86 upazilas last year.
Within November 7, the National Board of Revenue is scheduled to hold the event for four days in 56 upazilas, for two days in 34 upazilas and for one day in 71 upazilas (mobile).
Formally declaring the Fair opened at the NBR's under-construction headquarters in Agargaon as the chief guest, State Minister for Finance and Planning MA Mannan said they are hoping that the Fair of this season is expected to mobilise more than Tk 3,000 crore as revenue with some 12-13 lakh people to take service from this year.
Acting President of the FBCCI Sheikh Fazle Fahim spoke on the occasion as the special guest chaired by Senior Secretary of the Internal Resources Division (IRD) and Chairman of the National Board of Revenue (NBR) Md Nojibur Rahman.
NBR member and convenor of the Income Tax Fair 2017 Dr Md Abdur Razzaque gave the address of welcome.
The State Minister said that the Income Tax Fair drew huge response since its inception in 2010 as the number of service seekers in the last year's fair totaled 9,28,000 with Tk 2,130 crore depositing in the State Coffer.
But, in the first year in 2010, some 60,500 people took various types of services from the Fair with only Tk 113 crore depositing in the State Coffer.
"This means that it's a success," MA Mannan said asking the fresh officials of the NBR to instill the mindset of 'servants of people' in their every work.
NBR Chairman Md Nojibur Rahman promised that the standard of services of NBR would increase further from now on.
Mentioning that the huge 'State Coffer' enriched with the taxpayers money is being utilised for implementing many development projects of the country, Nojibur said that the countrywide held tax camps have touched the hearts of common people.
The NBR chairman also accepted the request of FBCCI Acting Vice President Sheikh Fazle Fahim to jointly work for reaching the different contents of NBR to the large section of people through e-learning.
Echoing same with the State Minister, Nojibur Rahman said that they would take steps to provide tax payment pins (coat pins) to the taxpayers to easily recognise the taxpayers side by side tax cards would be provided to the taxpayers at the Fair in Dhaka and in Chittagong through which they would get priority in getting various government services.
Fahim said that due to the various friendly steps of the revenue watchdog, the year-on-year basis revenue collection witnessed a boost.
He also opined that the annual Income Tax Fair has a great impact on the economy and welcomed such initiative from the FBCCI.
The NBR is providing cards and stickers this time reading "I am a proud taxpayer" to those who submit their income tax returns for the year 2017-18 at the fairs in Dhaka and Chittagong.
The NBR has been holding the fair since 2010 to motivate people to pay taxes and create a tax culture in a country where less than one percent of the population submits returns regularly.
Since the introduction, the popularity of the event has grown as it helps taxpayers receive assistance, submit returns and complete formalities without visiting tax offices.
This year the tax authority, along with honouring 141 top taxpayers from various sectors and professions with tax cards, will recognise as "Kar Bahadur" or "Tax Icon" to those families whose members have been paying a high amount tax for a long time.
The NBR placed a proposal before Finance Minister AMA Muhith to honour as "Kar Bahadur" or "Tax Icon" to 16 families from Dhaka district, eight from Chittagong district and one each from the remaining districts.
The recognition is expected to come on November 8.
Taxpayers will also be able to pay taxes through Sonali and Janata banks, while potential taxpayers will get electronically generated taxpayer identification numbers.
The NBR said separate booths would provide tax-related assistance to women, the physically challenged, the elderly and freedom fighters. Booths will also be set up to help taxpayers file returns online.
The tax administrator would also organise a "tax week" from November 24 to 30 at field offices so that taxpayers can complete tax-related formalities ahead of the November 30 deadline for submitting income tax returns.
According to NBR, the Direct or income tax, the second biggest source of revenue of the state, accounted for 35 percent of the total revenue of Tk 185,003 crore in fiscal 2016-17.