Constitution Amendment and caretaker government in bangladesh
Constitution is the weightiest powerful law in the state. Although constitution is rigid but necessity knows no law. For this Reason constitutional amendment have been completed 14th times. One of them is care-taker government and that is come from 13th Amendment 1996 (Article 58B, Part 4) Now we will be discuss According to the Question under following-
The Amendment of the Constitution
The First Amendment:
This amendment has been taken 15th July, 1973 and has been Approved by president 17th July; 1973. Act No. 15 of 1973.
By This amendment insertion of New article 47A in the 3rd part of constitution. Refer n this article all Fundamental Rights are put off, if someone crimes against humanity or war crimes and other crimes under international law and that time if state auxiliary force take any protest that time will not be granted as illegal.
47th the rights guaranteed under article 31, clauses (1) and (3) of article 35 and 44 shall not apply to any person to whom a law specified in close (3) of article 47 applies and He/She do not appeal to the supreme court for His rights.
The Second amendment
This amendment have been taken 20 September, 19973. Approved by president 22 September, 1973. Act No. 24 of 1973. power for proclamation of Emergency. If the provident is satisfied that a grave emergency exists in which the security or economic life of Bangladesh, or any part there of, is threatened by war or external aggression or internal disturbance, He may issue a proclamation of emergency.
And amendment of Articles 26, 33, 63, 72, of the constitution.
The third Amendment
This amendment have been taken 23 November 1974 and approved by president 28 November 1974. Act No, 74 of 1974. by this amendment Bangladesh give the barubari to India According to agreement of Bangladesh and India on the 16th may 1974.
And amendment of Article 2 of the constitution. Part (1)
If we didn’t give Barubri to India, we would easily communicate with Nepal.
The Fourth Amendment:
This amendment have been taken 25thk January 1975 and approved by president 25 January 1975. act Noz of 1975.
Amendment of article 11 of the part 2 of the constitution in the constitution of the Bangladesh hereinafter referred to as the constitution in article 11, the comma and words”, and the which effective participation by the people through their elected representative in administration at all have shall be ensured” shall be omitted.
Substitution of article 44 of the constitution in part 2 and Amendment of part iv of the constitution for chapters 1 and 11 the following shall be substituted, namely-
Chapter-i-the president and vice-president (48, 49)
Chapter-ii-the council of ministers (58) and amendment of 66, 67, 70, 72, 74, 95, 96 of the constitution
The Fifth Amendment
This amendment have been take 5th April 1979 and approved by president 6th April 1979. act No I of 1979.
In the constitution of Bangladesh, in the fourth 8 schedule after paragraph 17, the following New paragraph 18 shall be added namely-
“18, all proclamatio9ns, proclamation orders, Martial law regulation, Martial law orders and other laws made during the period between the 15th August, 1975, and the 9th April, 1979 to give the legality. By this amendment zia-urrah govt. got legality
The Sixth Amendment
This amendment have been taken 8th July, 1981 and approved by the president 10th July, 1981. Act No. 14 of 1981.
Amendment of the constitution. Article 51 of the part (iv) legality to be president from vice-president by the election.
In the constitution, in article 66, in clause (2A) for the words “ he is a prime minister” the words and commas he is a president, vice-president prime minister shall be substituted.
This amendment have been taken by the president Sayem.
The Seventh Amendment
This amendment have been taken 10th November 1986, and approved by the president 11th November 1986, Act No, 1 to 1986.
For legality of all proclamations martial law Regulations, proclamations orders, Martial Law orders made during the period between 24th march, 1982 and 9th November 1986.
And amendment of article 96 of the constitution.
This amendment approved by president Arshad, but He took the power by the civil service.
The Eighth Amendment
This amendment have been taken 7th June, 1988 and Approved by president 9th June, 1988, Act No 30 of 1988.
Recognition to the islam as a state religion. Spieling of Dacca change to Dhaka (5) and Bangali to Bangla, (3) and the High court Division shall have a permanent Bench each at Barisal, Chittagong, comilla, Jessore, Rangpur, and sylhet.
This amendment taken by president Arshad and this amendment has ruiuned our sprits of liberation war,
The Ninth Amendment
This amendment have been taken 10th July, 1989 and approved by president 11th July 1989, Act No. 38 of 1989.
Election of president and vice-president at the time.Attainment of president power and one person to be elected two times.
And of articles 9, 50, 51, 53, 54, 55(A), 72, 119, 122, 123, 124.
The Tenth Amendment
This amendment have been taken 12th June, 1990 and approved by president 23th June 1990, Act No. of 1990.
Amendment of Article 65 in the part 5 of the constitution until the dissolution of parliament occurring next of the expiration of the period of ten years beginning from the date of the first meeting of the parliament after parliament in existence at the time of commencement of the constitution Act, 1990. there shall be reserved thirty seats exclusively for women members, who shall be elected according to law by the members aforesaid:
Women have been gained seats in the parliament.
The Eleventh Amendment
This amendment have been taken 6th August, 1991 and approved by president 10th august, 1991 Act No. 24 of 1991. about return to the office acting president Justice Mr. Shahabuddin Ahmed.
By this amendment state give the rights of chief justice Mr. Shabuddin Ahmed.
The Twelfth Amendment.
This amendment have been taken 6th September, 1991 and approved by president 18 September 1991. Act No 28 o 1991.
Amendment of article 11 (part (11) of the constitution parliamentary government system returned by this amendment
We have regained our lost democracy by this amendment.
The Thirteenth Amendment
This amendment have been taken 27th march, 1996 and approved by the president 28 march 1996. Act No 1 of 1996.
Non-party care-taken Government of peaceful national election. This amendment completed by article 58 (B) and part (iv).
We will discuss about E.G after fourteenth amendment.
This amendment have been taken 16th may, 2004 and approved by president 17th may. 2004. Act No of 2004.
According to article 65 part (v), 45 women seats in the House of the Nation.
According to article 96 part (vi) increases the age of justice of supreme court and increases the age of P.S.C. chairman and member according to article 139. part (9)
In 1993 first jamaat-E-Islami and Awami League and jatiya party submitted their respective bill concerning caretaker government. Every Bill contained the same object to make general elections free and fair and to make the whole process of election free from the government influence provision for caretaker government should be introduced in the constitution. But this demand of the opposition parties was treated by the government as unconstitutional and illegal. The Mgura by-election was the turning point for the movement of caretaker government. It was Magura by-election in which the government party Bangladesh Nationalist party took resort to an unprecedented malpractice and rigging.
This election was manipulation of Bangladesh Nationalist party government as reported by most important dailies. Before Magura incident and boycott the parliament. Then they got their direct way of demanding that they would not go back to parliament till a “Caretaker government” Bill was introduced in the House. The Bangladesh nationalist Party government the compelled to make election. On 24th November 1995 the government dissolved the 5th parliament and the 6th parliamentary election was scheduled on 15th February 1996.
But since the government did not pay need to the demand of caretaker government by the opposition, all the opposition parties boycott election. The ruling party Bangladesh Nationalist Party processed to contest the election with sudden hand picked parties as the military director Ershad did. All the opposition parties launched their country wide non-cooperation movement. Lastly finding no other way out Bangladesh Nationalist party government introduced the caretaker government Bill (the 13th Amendment of the Constitution) on 21st March at the first session of the 6th Parliament. The Bill was passed on the 26th march.
The term “Caretaker Government” means an interim government which is a non party government and abstains itself from contesting the election and is appointed particularly for conducting a free and fair election.
When parliament stand stands dissolved on is dissolved because the government has been defeated in the floor and it has advised for it’s dissolution of parliament or because of any other reason, the existing government continuous in office till the new government is formed after election. The setting government after dissolution of parliament and before its reconstitution transforms automatically into a “ Caretaker Government” though a sitting one undertakes to take care of the affairs of the government for pre-election interim period during policies or commitments of a board and sweeping nature.
In some cases to a particular special situation a caretaker government is formed on the basis of national consensus. Again in some written constitutions specific provisions are kept for caretaker government to conduct general election. For example, in Britain in 1995 after the second world war the cabinet formed by sir Ivon Jennings as caretaker government.
Thirteenth amendment was made in march 28, 1996 which introduced the provisions of a non-party caretaker government to the constitution of Bangladesh (Chapter 11A, Article 58B-58E).
The question of formation of caretaker government will arise in the following two situation:
(i) If parliament is dissolved for any reason a caretaker government shall be appointed within 25 days after such dissolution.
(ii) If parliament stands dissolved, a caretaker government shall be appointed within 15 days after such dissolution.
According to Article 58(C) the caretaker government will work during the period from the date of which the chief adviser of the government enters upon office after parliament is dissolved by reason of expiration of its term till the date on which a new prime minister enters upon his office after the constitution of parliament. This government shall consist of the chief adviser at its head and not more than ten other advisers, all of whom shall be appointed by the president. The persons are appointed as an adviser on the chief adviser having some qualification.
The chief adviser shall have the status, and shall be entitled to the remuneration and privilege of a prime minister and an adviser shall have the status, and shall be entitled to the remuneration and privileges of a minister. For the qualification of the advisors; under Article 58C(7) the president shall appoint advisers from among persons who are:
(a) Qualified for election as members of parliament.
(b) Not members of any political party or any organization associated with or affiliated to any political party.
(c) Not, and have agreed n writhing not to be, candidates for ensuring election of members of parliament.
(d) Not over seventy-two years of age.
Following persons having qualification may be as chief advisor appointed by the president:-
(1) The person who among the retired chief Justices o Bangladesh retired last.
(2) If such retired chief justice is not available or is not willing to hold the office of chief adviser, the president shall appoint as chief adviser the person who among the retired chief justices of Bangladesh retired next before the last retired chief justice.
(3) If no retired chief justice is available or willing to hold the office of chief adviser, the president shall appoint as chief adviser the person who among the retired judges of the Appellate Division retired last.
(4) If such retired judge is not available or is not willing to hold the office of chief adviser the person who among the retired judges of the Appellate Division retired next before the last such retired judge.
(5) If no retired judge of the Appellate Division is available or willing to hold the office of chief advisor, the president shall, after consultation, as fast as practicable, with the major political parties, appoint the chief advisor from among citizens of Bangladesh.
(6) If none of the above-mentioned persons can be found to be appointed as the chief adviser, the president shall assumed the function of the chief adviser.
(7) After the fall of military dictation regime till now Bangladesh faced caretaker government for Four times. In 1991 justice sahabuddin ahamed acted as the acting president and until he came out of his office he acted as acting president. and He have been completed the 1st election under caretaker government after three election (1991, 1996, 2001 under caretaker Government)
During that time many movement were take place about the reform of caretaker government. Election commission and electrical law. In the reforming personal there were five proposals about caretaker government. The following are proposals:
1. The president will appoint an acceptable person as chief advisor and advisors of the caretaker government by consensus of and in consultation with all political parties.
2. During the tenure of the caretaker government the president will act in all matters of the state on advice of the chief advisor keeping parliament democracy inconsideration.
3. During its time, the caretaker government will run the defense ministry.
4. Jurisdiction of the caretaker government will be confined to conducting the day to day work and assisting the election commission in holding the general election.
5. And the chief adviser and advisers will not be member of any political party on its affiliated organizations. Over all this chief adviser will have the confidence of all political parties.
These five proposals are proposed by the opposition camp to reform the formation and jurisdiction of the caretaker government (Source: daily Star, 16/07/2005, Page-1)8.
On the constitutional development of Bangladesh the 13th Amendment of the constitution, in a sense, is a positive step for following reasons.
First, the system of caretaker government gave a new direction to democracy and election in the country. It helped us to get rid of autocracy. It has paved the way for making the general election free and fair, particularly free from government influence.
Second, caretaker government provided the people with opportunities to enjoy their voting rights and play their role in the greater process of democratic governance, Previously people were just to know that they have voting right. The ever gave the people the chance to vote.
Fourth, the system of caretaker government has an enormous role for making the election process credible and increasing he credibility of parliament and government.
Fifth and final, it is a milestone in our journey to parliament democracy. It gave a new way to democracy and development.
However, the system has some pitfalls which sometimes disturb the process of governance and democracy. the last caretaker government dominated all political parties and prevented Fundamental Rights of population almost two years 11/01/06 from 29/12/08, although time of caretaker Government is 90 days. But He minuses of power.
So Caretaker Government system is unfeasibility in Bangladesh. Because of caretaker Government misuse the power, such as or. Fakhruddin Ahmed and opposition party do not recognition to the government party.
Although caretaker Government system is important for Bangladesh. But it is overact the legality. Recently some political parties are opposition to the caretaker Government system. So we should abandon the care so we should abandon the care taken system. (Colamist, Harunur Rashid)
We want to say that in the recommendation caretaker Government should complete the election in 90 days.
Above discussion shows that, the system of caretaker government is important for the democratic people of the country. Although some political parties today are denouncing against the system such opposition has no ground among the mass. So, in spite of some pitfalls the system should be survived for every interest of democracy and national process.
1. The constitution of Bangladesh. Br. A. Matin Khasru Minister of law. (1996-2001)
2. Halim; Md. Abdul (1998), “Constitution, Constitutional Law and Politics, Bangladesh Perspective” Publisher; Yusuf Ali Khan; page No. 395.
3. Ibid; Page No. 394.
4. Ibid; Page no. 392.
5. Ibid; page no. 393.
6. Constitution of Bangladesh as amended in 2006, Article 58-d, Gob. Page -19-21.
7. Ibid; Page No. 19-21.
8. Hasanuzzaman; Al Masud, Role of opposition in Bangladesh Politics; University Press Limited, 1998; Mizanur Rahman Khan, Shangbidhan O Tattubadhayank Sarker Bitarka; Dhaka City Prokashoni; 1995, Page No. 368-369.
9. The Daly Star. 16th July. 2005. Page-1.
10. The Daily Star. 13th May. 2009.