Dual policy causing huge loss at Bhomra land port

Published : 02 Jul 2021 08:54 PM | Updated : 02 Jul 2021 11:46 PM

Due to adoption of the dual policy of the government, Bhomra land port authorities have incurred a loss of nearly Tk One billion in revenue earning. 

The faulty policy caused a deficit of Tk 62.98 millions in revenue earned during the last fiscal year while the amount of deficit is Tk 36.426 million during the last eleven months of the current fiscal year. 

It is learnt that the import and export operations remained suspended for three months due to the Corona virus pandemic. Though the activities of export and import through the port have recently resumed, the traders are now avoiding Bhomra land port alleging dual-policy and are using Benapole land port instead. 

At Benapole land port, which is only 53 km away from Bhomara, both the importers and the exporters enjoy several financial benefits for using the port. As a result, Bhomra port authorities are likely to incur a huge revenue deficit during the current fiscal year the previous fiscal years.

It is learnt for importing a truck load of grapes weighing 23 metric tonnes through the Bhomra land port, the importers need to pay Tk 1.182 (11 lakh 82 thousand) million in taxes or in duty while at Benapole land port some dishonest officials in collusion with traders weigh the same truck load of grapes to 20.25 metric tonnes and charge Tk 1.08 million (10 lakh eighty thousand) duty or taxes for importing the same. 

The same way, in case of importing a truck load of tomato, traders at the Bhomra port are paying a duty of Tk 0.594 million for 23.5 tonnes in a truck while at Benapole the importers are paying a duty of Tk 0.56 million showing 20 tonnes of tomato in a truck. 

The same way in collusion with the customs authorities at Benapole land port, traders are importing 40 to 55 trucks of raw-materials daily and thus 12,000 t0 14,000 trucks annually. Thus the customs authorities and traders are misappropriating taka several thousand in duty. The syndicate comprised the customs authorities and importers and exporters at the Benapole port thus earning millions of taka illegal money.

Whereas, by using the Bhomra land port, the traders would be benefitted and the government would also earn a huge amount of money as customs duty and taxes. But, due to the dual policy of the government, the Bhomra port remained almost unused. As a result, several thousand people engaged in various port related works like C&F Agents, Handling and Transport workers turned unemployed. 

Azizur Rahman, Customs Commissioner of Benapole Land port, reported  he heard about the allegations that traders at the port were enjoying some waiver facilities. But, he added, he would check any irregularities of the port. He also said, Assistant Commissioner Mostafizur Rahman would say more about such activities. 

Assistant Commissioner Mostafizur Rahman said the traders pay duties and taxes of 80 to 89 percent of raw-materials imported through trucks; the rest are waived as the weight of crates.

A Customs Officer at Bhomra land port informed, he has heard the traders at Benapole were enjoying waiver of nearly 20 percent of weight of the goods they import through the port which is, undoubtedly, a huge corruption. Such waiver is illogical and the government is being deprived of realising several thousand crore of Taka in duty. He opined such corruption should be stopped immediately.

Shamsul Alam, Custom's Commissioner of Bhomra land port informed, the land port should be run according to the government rules. He added, no corruption will be allowed to be practiced at the port until he is in charge of the port.