Common people are no longer interested in the budget because it offers nothing to them. We still talk about it because it is crucial for the country.
But what we recommended will not be discussed in the parliament because it can be considered already approved.
However, a few changes may still take place in some areas.
The proposed budget has expressed many visions to build a smart Bangladesh with various achievements and expectations. But there are no specific guidelines on any subject.
The proposal to raise the tax-free income limit of Tk3.5 lakh is correct. But why impose a minimum Tk2,000 tax on individuals who will file tax returns even if they do not have taxable income? This seems contradictory to me.
The budget should have been proposed considering priority sectors and the current challenges. For example, the emphasis should have been on export, remittance, poverty alleviation, agriculture and industry.
But I did not see any specific plan on those issues.
The price inflation, which is now at 9%, cannot be brought down to the estimated 6%. The central bank is providing loans to the government by overprinting money and inflation is increasing.
The government has set a target of borrowing a huge amount from the banking sector. It is not possible to contain inflation at 6% with this practice.
The banking sector is already facing a liquidity crisis. If the government increases borrowings from banks, it will affect the private sector. Private sector growth will slow down and employment will not be created.
Loans are not being recovered, there is rampant corruption and money is being laundered. But rather than addressing these matters, central bank MDs are busy dealing with restrictions on their foreign travel.
Salehuddin Ahmed, former governor, Bangladesh Bank