Sri Lanka may have to repay taxes imposed by gazette which has not been approved by parliament during the specified period, Bandula Gunewardene, a legislator and former deputy finance minister warned.
Posted on October 21st, 2015

Dr Sudath Gunasekara President Senior Citizens Movement, Mahanuwara.

21.10.2015.

Serious and immediate attention of all citizens in this country is drawn to the above important news item.

While listening to a news briefing by MEP Leader Dinesh Gunawardhana yesterday I learnt about the withdrawal of this gazette by Minister Kiriella. The whole country should be thankful to the MEP and its leader for taking up this very important issue that concerns the legitimate rights of the people in Parliament when there is no representative to talk on behalf of them in Parliament.

In this note I want to bring to the notice of the MEP leader and the general public of this country a gross injustice done by the TELECOM to its subscribers.

I have noticed for the past few years increasing charges practically almost every month by the SLT in different forms.

I give below three tele bills received by me for the months of August, Sept and October 2015 for your information. I have no doubt all subscribers of SLT throughout the Island must have got similar bills as well.

                                                                                  Bill 1

I give below three telephone bills received by me

SLT 081 2232744 period 1.9.2015-30.9.2015

Monthly subscription                                                       345.00

Domestic voice usage                                                       122.89

Discount                                                                               122.89

SLT Broadband Entrée (Rental)                                       499.00

Cess                                                                                         17.22

Telecom levy 10%                                                                 50.90

             25%                                                              88.01

1000.13

 

 

 

                                                                   Bill 11

Aug-Sept 06/08 to 05/09 TP   071 8075326

Monthly subscription                                                 539.00

Call charges                                                                 295.00

GORS/EDGE/HSDOA                                                     91.60

Cess 2%                                                                           18.88

Telecom levy 10%                               39.84

             25%                           136.48           176.32

Total charges for the month                                 1,120.80

Arrears                                                                           48.72

Total Payable                                                          1,169.52

 

 

                                                                   Bill 111

Sept/Oct 06/09 to 05/10 TP   071 8075326 TP 8075326

Monthly subscription                                                 539.00

Call charges                                                                   276.50.

815.50

Cess 2%                                                                           16.64

832.14

Telecom levy 10%                     30.50

             25%                 131.76                       162.26

994.40  

Arrears                                                                       1,169.52

Total Payable                                                            2,163.92                              

Going through these bills you will notice that these bills include several charges outside the normal telephone levies like Cess, 10% and 25%. My Aug-Sept 06/08 to 05/09 TP   071 8075326 also includes a levy called GORS/EDGE/HSDOA. But it is not there in next month’s bill. I do not know what the hell are GORS/EDGE/HSDOA. BUT I presume they are also another form of Taxes haphazardly charged by the TELECOM to increase its profit at the cost of Subscribers. Monthly subscription                                                 for this month also has been jacked up to Rs 539.00 from previous months.

Very often these unjustified taxes exceed the call charges. In addition to the Monthly subscription on my land line SLT also has charged another levy called a SLT Broadband Entrée (Rental) 499.00 in addition to the 345.00. Both these charges are recurrent and also charged every month.

In the past, once a telephone is installed the customer gets a monthly bill only for the calls he/she has taken for the month. And that is all. But today the TELECOM appears to add a new kind of tax almost every month without going through the normal process of first getting the approval of Parliament.

This type of haphazard and arbitrary decision making by political appointees to satisfy the Ministers for their survival and fatten their purses is worse than daylight highway robbery.

I do not know whether TELECOM charges are also covered by the MEP motion. If it is not covered I would request the MEP leader to take up this also as early as possible and bring redress to the helpless millions exploited by these treacherous officials under the tag YAHAPALANAYA.

This is how the TELECOM shows billions of rupees profit on its balance sheet at the end of the year. This is how a government said to be democratically elected exploits its subjects without caring a damn for the plight of its citizens.

I hope Hon Dinesh Gunawardhana will take this matter also in Parliament on behalf of the hapless masses who suffer as they themselves have to pay their bills, as none of the other politicians and officials is ever concerned as it poses no problem for them, as their bills are settled by the State or in other words by the people of this country.

 

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