The government is losing a large amount of revenues from the unregistered and smuggled motorcycles plying across the country.
With nameplates, “On Test” or “Applied for Registration (AFR)” attached to their bikes the bikers are seen on travelling on the streets for years without any intention of getting their vehicles registered.
Most of the motorcycles are smuggled into the country from the neighbouring India and the bikers get hold of the vehicles very easily.
They bike across the country without any registration, thus depriving the government of a huge amount of potential revenues.
Communications Secretary MAN Siddique yesterday told the Dhaka Tribune the government had decided to register motorcycles through their dealers.
All the newly sold bikes would now be registered through their dealers, he said, adding that the government would also operate a census to get the accurate number of illegal motorcycles.
Earlier on June 21, the Ministry of Communication decided to kick off the census for a month.
It also ordered the Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTA) to stop registration during the period.
A mobile court also conducted a drive at that time which was later stopped due to Ramadan and Eid-ul-Fitr.
Siddique said: “We have reopened the motorcycle registration and ordered the BRTA to resume the task considering people’s sufferings.”
The census of illegal bikes is underway, added the secretary.
“Now, we are updating our database of registered motorcycles. We will resume the mobile court drive shortly after completion of the survey,” he said.
“The government is losing a huge amount of revenues from the illegal operation of motorcycles and the census will facilitate earning revenues,” added Siddique.
The communications secretary, however, admitted that smuggled bikes were operational in the country.
“We are watching the matter very closely and the local offices of BRTA have already begun taking action against the illegal bikers,” he said.
But it will take time, Siddique said, adding that some gangs of smugglers on the frontiers were active enough to smuggle the bikes into the country from the neighbouring India.
Meanwhile, some motorcycle dealers of Dhaka and different districts complained that the BRTA and its local offices were charging them additional Tk3,000, besides the fixed fees for registration of motorcycles.
Regarding the additional charges, the secretary said: “We know the matter and it is very difficult to stop this malpractice due to manpower shortage.”
“We are taking punitive actions against those officials and transferring them also,” the secretary continued.
At present, there are nearly 300,000motorcycles under the BRTA Dhaka division registration Dhaka Metro LA or HA while in last June, it was 277,000.
But the actual number of motorcycles plying across Dhaka division is double or even triple the number reported.