The National Movement for Consumer Rights Protection (NMCRP) called on MPs at all levels of governance to oppose the proposed act of Parliament to legitimize the increase of Value Added Tax (VAT).

Chairman of the NMCRP, Ranjith Withanage said that the Government was at present attempting to present a bill concerning the matter and get it passed prior to the Supreme Court issuing an injunction order.

The proposed increase of the VAT is presently being challenged before the superior Court. The increase in the VAT was done by the Government by way of a gazette and not by an act of Parliament.

Elsewhere, he added that bus owners should be provided with relief so that those who travel by bus are not made to pay an increase in the fare.

“The Government is sending members of the intelligence community after the business community in a fear-mongering attempt to scare them into submitting to the increase of the VAT. We are making the regional politicians at all levels and the public aware of the need to oppose this,” he said.

“Regarding the increase in bus fare, Ministers and MPs ask for luxury vehicles while the general public is not even provided with increased facilities for justifying the increase in prices that the consumers are asked to pay. The buses are made using chassis brought down from India, to which a body is fitted. The passengers develop neck and back pain due to this uncomfortable mode of travel,” he noted.