For about two hundred years the colonial British government ruled undivided India. During that time they took away a lot of wealth and properties from this subcontinent to their own country. During centuries of oppressive and exploitative rule, plunder and drain of wealth from undivided India to Britain were massive. According to one estimate, the amount comes to around GB £ 600 trillion. Many scholars including Dadabhai Naoroji have analysed the drain of wealth. These are approximate calculation made on the basis of sound reason.
Not only from India, the British rulers took away wealth and properties from those countries where they ruled and today’s affluent England is the result of extensive plundering. The British did not establish any property in India. In a word it bears a sign of their patriotism.
But it is a matter of deep regret that from Bangladesh thousands of crore taka are being laundered abroad every year. There are a huge number of Bangladeshi-owned luxury palaces, large duplex apartments and a lot of savings in foreign banks whose money have been laundered illegally by means of evasion. Thus capital flight or large-scale exodus of financial assets and capital occurs.
There is allegation that many doctors of Bangladesh, in the name of treatment through various fraud and deceit have established second home in foreign lands taking a large amount of money from the patients. They are also saving money in different banks of abroad earning from this country. From the money-laundering the garment businessmen are the highest position.
As a consequence, Bangladesh ranks 26th in terms of illicit financial outflows, which come from tax dodging, crime and corruption. As much as $5.6 billion siphoned out during 2004-2013.This is around 15 percent of the country’s national budget and almost 3 percent of the gross domestic product.
Political uncertainty, corruption and weak internal investment climate are the main reasons behind the high illicit outflow. The bottom reason is corruption. Unless corruption is curbed, illicit financial flow will continue.
Recently the chairman of the NBR has disclosed to the parliamentary committee of finance ministry that a garment businessman has exported 297 containers full of readymade garments, but not a single dollar came to the country against the exported garments.
Garment is the most important article among articles exported from Bangladesh. Our readymade garments are bought by different countries of the world. The workers of readymade garments __who are mostly underprivileged women__ make them in exchange for very little wage which the factory owners export to different countries and earn foreign currencies. But it is learnt from newspaper reports that most of the garment owners do not bring the money in the country. Most of them have made second home in Malaysia, Dubai and Canada. They have deposited the foreign currencies in different banks of abroad which is very harmful for the country. Yet the owners are getting bonded wire-house opportunity and tax rebate and cash incentive.
In this regard, Chairman of the parliamentary committee Dr Abdur Razzak said it is painful that in the matter of tax-deceiving and money-laundering through under-invoicing-over-invoicing in the matter of import-export no step was taken against even one person within seven years.
. In the opinion of the experts, the matter should be investigated jointly by the Bangladesh Bank and Customs department. It most important to note that, the laundered money have to be brought back to Bangladesh.