The Dhaka North City Corporation on Thursday removed over 700 illegally installed signboards and billboards from the capital's Gulshan, Banani, and Pragati Sarani areas under the direction of three executive magistrates.
These signboards, billboards and other goods illegally kept on roads and footpaths were sold for about Tk1.77 lakh through spot auction, said sources.
Besides, for not having a trade licence, illegally occupying roads and footpaths, obstructing government work, and other offences, a total fine of Tk1.91 lakh was also imposed to those violating the law.
Dhaka North Mayor Atiqul Islam visited the Gulshan-1 roundabout during the drive. "Conducting business by giving advertisements on big billboards and signboards without paying the due taxes is utterly illegal," the mayor said.
He urged everyone who wants to put up billboards and signboards to pay the taxes before doing so.
"Many do business here with the Dhaka South City Corporation's licence and they cannot do that," said Atiqul, adding, "If you have the licence to conduct business in Mohammadpur, you cannot use that in Gulshan."
He further said, "Plenty of organisations do business in the Dhaka North, from financial institutions to multinational corporations. But everyone I ask, they say they do not have enough knowledge of taxes and signboard measurements – the information that is already available in the trade licence."
The drive by the Dhaka North City Corporation and the mobile court will continue removing illegal billboards, signboards, and illegal goods kept on footpaths.
Meanwhile, about 100 companies paid around Tk60 lakh as tax to Dhaka North City Corporation for putting up signboards and project signs on Thursday.