Businessmen protest against raids by IRD

Kathmandu, February 22:

Business houses at New Road remained closed protesting against the ‘VAT raid’ carried out by the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) today.

The government suspecting VAT evasion has carried out the raids and fined about two dozen organisations and closed nine others for not providing bills for the right value to customers and not maintaining a VAT plate as per the norms of IRD.

Businessmen in protest of the raids gathered at Bhugolpark and shouted anti-government slogans. “We have registered under the VAT and are providing the revenue office with proper figures, but the present raids are a barbaric act of the government that signifies that they do no trust us,” said a businessman who does not want to be quoted.

He also said that activities like these hamper business as business people get frequently harassed by people from the revenue office.

Rana B Shrestha, acting director general at IRD, said that it is within the rights of the government to check if business houses were providing customers with the right value bill or not.

The government has already given a dateline to maintain VAT plates but some organisations were found not adhering to the rules of IRD and they were fined, he said.New Road, the major business hub of Kathmandu, remained tense throughout the day with police preventing vehicular entry into the area.