Till now, I had idea that governments of all the countries impose VAT to increase the revenue. But never heard about imposing VAT on tution fees by any government. In Bangladesh, education has always been on the first priority of importance by previous governments. I think, none in Bangladesh has ever thought of imposing VAT on tution fees of students. This shows that this government has gone mad.
Sheikh Hasina government also said that they want to keep education out of any problem and they said that they will make the education for the students free. Now, imposing VAT on tution fees does not go same with what they promised; rather it shows simply U-turn on their promise.
For past couple of years, teachers were not provided with support by the government. Government promised so many things before the election for teachers, but they simply forgot about those promises after they got elected. Many teachers were torchured on road by police while protesting for their demands. Recently, teachers were attacked by AL’s student wing BCL in Sylhet. And now, students have to protest against this VAT on their tution fees instead of attending their classes. Looking at these incidents, it is clear to me that AL government has decleared war against education. They want to earn money out of the educational system to cover up their debt taken from government banks. If they really need money to run the country, then they should recover all the black money sent to foreign countries by political leaders or from bankcrupt business magnets.
Students have already protesting all over the country. Government is explaining this issue as the universities are to pay this VAT, not the students. But we already know that VAT are practically paid by the end consumer (as government is making education as a product). Students are going to pay for this extra 7.5% VAT imposed on their tution fees.
I can gurantee that everyone, simply everyone of the country including members of AL, are against this decision by the government. Some may protest, some will not; as some does not have the courage to protest against government. And also, student will not stop until this VAT is withdrawn by the government.
I have an argument on this issue. This VAT was imposed by NBR on 4th July. None protested till then. Why all of sudden this protest started all over the country. There was a meeting before some days by 32/34 VCs of private universities. After that this protest started. If this protest is actually initiated by the university managements, then these students are actually used by the universities to force the government to withdraw VAT on tution fees. I also don’t support imposing VAT on tution fees and I protest against this. But I don’t like, if the university management is using the students to protest against this. If sudents are protesting without any influence from university authorities, then it’s OK.
I want to suggest everyone in Bangladesh to protest against this decision of government and continue protesting until this decision of imposing VAT is not withdrawn.