There are two types of bills present in our legislation—a bill raised by ministers known as Government Bill and a bill raised by other than ministers known as Private Member’s Bill.
During a recent parliamentary session, a respectable MP proposed a Private Member’s motion on definite tax structure on tobacco-based products instead of the current ad valorem tax structure. He stated that in FY2017-18, the economic loss was Tk 305.6 billion due to tobacco usage, which is less than the tax that was earned from tobacco in the same year. He also mentioned that the ad valorem tax is vague and only used by 6 countries in the whole world.
Certain ministers put the motion on rest, replying that they are considering implementing fixed tax on tobacco products. When the MP still wanted to retain its motion, the speaker put that motion on voice vote. Most of the members of the house didn’t understand the question and accidently supported the proposal.
So the speaker once again had to slowly raise the motion into question. This time they didn’t make the same mistake like they did before.
This scenario is really unsettling for people. MPs who implement different laws in our country should understand the rules regarding the making of laws. And if they don’t, shouldn’t their dedication be questioned?