A forum of rights groups has urged the government to ensure free and fair growth of democratic institutions. Terming the proposed national budget FY 2016-17 a budget of 'inequality and injustice', they suggested immediate actions against capital flight.
The speakers said, "Action against capital flight should be prioritized rather than increasing taxes. Without strengthening democratic institutions, there is no alternative to attract private investment." They made the remark while addressing a press conference at the Jatiya Press Club on Tuesday. Equity and Justice Working Group Bangladesh (EquityBD) organized the program.Moderated by Rezaul Karim Chowdhury, the Chief Moderator of EquityBD, the press conference was addressed, among others, by Sayed Aminul Haque of EquityBD, Mostafa Kamal Akhanda of COAST and Zayed Iqbal Khan of Bangladesh Krishok Federation. Ahsanul Karim Babor read out a position paper in the press conference. Sayed Aminul said that India had shown several effective measures to stop capital flight, but our government has hardly taken any measures in this regard. On the other hand, the proposed budget for FY 2016-17 looks to enhance VAT and other taxes, which they termed unjust. Rezaul Karim Chowdhury mentioned that politicians must shun the confrontational politics and hate speech to promote sense of security to the citizens which is a basic to stop capital flight. He also said that free and fair growth of democratic institutions is also essential to attracting private investment. In his position paper, Ahsanul Karim mentioned that there is 26 percent increase of interest for banks and other sources in this proposed budget for taking loan compared to last year. The capital flight of 2013 was 12 times higher than the foreign grant and 141 percent more of foreign loans for the year 2015-16, he said.
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