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2012

An assignment on the reflection of UN Charter, ICCPR and ICESCR in the constitution of Bangladesh: An appraisal.
Course No: 907

Submitted To:
Assistant professor Md. Shariful Islam Dept. Of Political Science University of Dhaka

Submitted By:
Shamim Hosen M.S.S. 2 Semester, Sec-B Roll No: 220 Dept. of Political Science University of Dhaka
nd

Date of Submission
11/19/2012

Table of Contents
No: 01 02 03 04 05 Topics Introduction Constitution of Bangladesh United Nations Charter International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights Page No: 01 01-02 02-03 04

International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural 05 Rights

06

Reflection of UN Charter, ICCPR and ICESCR in the 05-07 Constitution of Bangladesh

07 08 09

Evaluation Conclusion References

07 07 08

Introduction:
The United Nations encourages respect and protects fundamental freedoms for all people. Bangladesh as a developing country recognizes human rights to promote overall development of the country. Bangladesh has ratified most of the international treaties and covenants including UN Charter, ICCPR and ICESCR. The normative framework for human rights protection is grounded in the UN Charter, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), ICCPR and ICESCR. Human rights are reflected in these legal instruments adopted at the global and regional levels and enacted at the national level. However the implementation of government policies and plans in the development of human right institutions, human resources, accessibility and availability, resource distribution, rural-urban disparity, the male-female gap has put the human rights system in a dismal state in Bangladesh.

We will not enjoy development without security, we will not enjoy security without development, and we will not enjoy either without respect for human rights. [UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, In Larger Freedom: Towards Development, Security and Human Rights for All, 2005] Here, I shall provide brief information of Bangladesh constitution, UN Charter, ICCPR and ICESCR before analyzing the reflection of UNC, ICCPR and ICESCR in the constitution of Bangladesh.

Constitution of Bangladesh:
The Constitution of Bangladesh as a supreme law declares Bangladesh as a secular democratic republic where sovereignty belongs to the people and lays down the framework defining fundamental political principles of the state and spells out the fundamental rights of citizens. It has been passed by the Constituent Assembly of Bangladesh on November 4, 1972 and it has come into effect from December 16, 1972,

on the first anniversary of Bangladesh's victory over Pakistan in the Liberation War. The constitution proclaims nationalism, democracy, socialism and secularity as the fundamental principles of the Bangladeshi republic, and it has amended for fifteen times. [The Constitution of Peoples Republic of Bangladesh]

United Nations Charter:


The Charter of the United Nations is the foundational treaty of the international organization called the United Nations. It was signed in San Francisco, United States, on 26 June 1945 and entered into force on 24 October 1945, after being ratified by the five permanent members of the Security Council and a majority of the other signatories. UN Charter works to achieve international co-operation in solving international economic, social, cultural or humanitarian problems and to promote and encourage respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language or religion. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 10 December 1948 in Paris which represents the first global expression of rights to which all human beings are inherently entitled. [Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia]

International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights:


The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) is a multilateral treaty adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on December 16, 1966, and in force from March 23, 1976. It commits its parties to respect the civil and political rights of individuals, including the right to life, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, electoral rights and rights to due process and a fair trial.

[International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, UN. 2012-03-06. Retrieved 201203-06.]

International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights:


The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) is also a multilateral treaty adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 16 December 1966, and in force from 3 January 1976. It commits its parties to work toward the granting of economic, social, and cultural rights to individuals, including labor rights and the right to health, the right to education, and the right to an adequate standard of living. [ICESCR, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. Retrieved 9 October 2009]

Reflection of UN Charter, ICCPR and ICESCR in the Constitution of Bangladesh:


The reflection of UN Charter especially UDHR, ICCPR and ICESCR in the constitution of Bangladesh has been explained by analyzing these important charters in the following: 1. The United Nation provides for the equal dignity of all people (UNHR-5, UNCpreamble 3) and urges for no discrimination about the rights (UDHR-2), (ICESCR-2(2), 3) which have been included in our constitution in the article of 28. 2. Articles 6 and 7 of UDHR, 16 of ICCPR have been provided for equality before law and equal protection of law and our constitution has guaranteed it through article 27.

3. The covenants claim for the protection of life, liberty, and security (UDHR-3, ICCPR-6) of every human. That has been reflected in the constitution by the article 31, 32. 4. Prohibition of slavery or forced labor has been provided by UDHR article 4 and ICCPR article 8, which has been included in article 34 of the constitution. 5. The covenants claim for no arbitrary arrest (UDHR-9) and public fair and hearing (UDHR-10, ICCPR-9) which has been reflected in the constitution consequently the article 33 and 35. 6. The UN provides for human the rights of freedom of movement (UDHR-13, ICCPR-12) freedom of assembly and association (UDHR-20) which are approved consequently by the article 36, 37 and 38 of our constitution. 7. Freedom of thought and conscience (UDHR-18, ICCPR-19) and religion (UDHR-19, ICCPR-18) have been reflected in the constitution by the article 39 and 41. 8. The covenants also approved the right to property (UDHR-17) and nationality (UDHR-15, ICCPR-24) which have been included in the constitution consequently by the article 6, 9 and 42. 9. The UN also provides the provisions for equal right to work (UDHR-23, ICCPR-21) with rest and leisure (UDHR-24) and right to form trade union. Those have been included in the constitution consequently by the article 15(a), (b), 20(1) and 38. 10. The UN provided the provision of getting human dignity for all by article 1 of UDHR, preamble of the ICCPR and the right of determination of their rights (ICCPR-1). Although the constitution of Bangladesh did not directly mention the right of human, it values the people of Bangladesh above all and all rights and duties of state are derived from the people of Bangladesh. 11. Article 4 of UDHR and article 8 of ICCPR provided the provision for prohibiting slavery. The constitution indirectly included the provision by mentioning prohibition of forced labor.

12. The UDHR article 5 and the ICCPR article 7 and 10 provided the provision that no one shall be subjected to torture or cruel, inhuman degrading, punishment or treatment which has been included in the provision 35(5) of Bangladesh constitution. 13. Article 17 of ICCPR and article 12 of UDHR mandate the right of privacy; no arbitrary interference with privacy is also included in the constitution of Bangladesh by providing article 43. 14. Right to education is recognized by the article 26 of UDHR and 13 of ICESCR which has been included in the article 17 of Bangladesh constitution. 15. The UDHR article 21 provided the provision on equal access to public service; it is also included in the constitution of Bangladesh by the article 29. 16. Article 22 of UDHR and article 6 and 9 of ICESCR mandate social security of human being which has been included in the article 15(d) of Bangladesh constitution. 17. Participation in cultural life is guaranteed by the article 27 of UDHR and 15(1) of ICESCR which is included in the provision 23 of Bangladesh constitution. 18. Effective remedy for the violation of fundamental rights is guaranteed by the article 8 of UDHR and 5 of ICESCR which is also stated in the article 26 and 44 of Bangladesh constitution. 19. Public health is an important issue, has been guaranteed by the article 8 of UDHR and 5 of ICESCR, also included in the constitution of Bangladesh under the article 20. The UDHR provided the right to seek asylum in the article 14 and the right to marriage with free and full consent of the intending spouses which is absent in our constitution. 21. The constitution of Bangladesh did not include the provision for the right to be treated with dignity and humanity of the convicted person until being proved criminals.

22. It also did not include the provision for forbidding the arbitrary expulsion of residents and aliens (ICCPR-13). 23. There is no direction in the constitutional provision regarding to the workers to join international trade union organizations (ICCPR-8). 24. Although the constitution provided the provision for equal right to work with remuneration leisure and rest, it did not include the provision for just and favorable condition of work with decent living for themselves and equal opportunity of promotion. 25. The rights of mothers during a reasonable period before and after childbirth are not protected by the constitution. 26. There is no constitutional provision for ensuring scientific and technical development with scientific research and creative activity. 27. For protecting the inherent right of life (ICCPR-6, UDHR-3, ICESCR-19) the declaration urged for the restriction on death penalty especially for the children and women. The constitution of Bangladesh did not recognize the provision for restricting death penalty. UNC, UDHR,ICCPR, ICESCR and Bangladesh Constitution

Evaluation:
The constitution of Bangladesh did not include the provision for the right to be treated with dignity and humanity of the convicted person until being proved criminals.The covenants provided the right to seek asylum and the right to marriage with free and full consent of the intending spouses. It also did not include the provision for forbidding the arbitrary expulsion of residents and aliens. There is no direction in the constitutional provision regarding to the workers to join international trade union organizations. However, the constitution provided the provision for equal right to work with remuneration leisure and rest; it did not include the provision for just and favorable working condition with decent living and equal opportunity of promotion. The constitution did not protect the rights of mothers during a reasonable period before and

after childbirth. Our constitution did not provide any provision for ensuring scientific and technical development with scientific research and creative activity. For protecting the inherent right of life the declaration urged for the restriction on death penalty especially for the children and women by the ICCPR, UDHR, and ICESCR. But, the constitution of Bangladesh did not recognize the provision for restricting death penalty, other side extra judicial killing is unethical especially cross fire has become a common fashion in Bangladesh. A broad vision of human rights must be entrenched to achieve sustainable human development.
[extra-judicial-killings-by-bangladesh.html]

Conclusion:
To formulate a constitution for newly independent Bangladesh, the drafting committee has been followed various international treaties, charters, bills, documents and constitutions, such as ICCPR, ICESCR, UDHR, IBHR and UN Charter. The ICCPR and the ICESCR are part of the International Bill of Human Rights and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) of UN Charter. To develop friendly relations among nations based upon respect for the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples, to take measures to strengthen universal peace, to achieve international cooperation in solving international economic, social, cultural or humanitarian problems and to promote respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language or religion all these charters are working. However, the constitution of Bangladesh is also included the articles (26 47) in respect of protecting human rights. But, in some cases it fails to follow international charter of human rights. Lack of enforcement and monitoring mechanisms also neglected the implementation of human rights in Bangladesh.

References:
1. T The Constitution Of The Peoples Republic Of Bangladesh, Legislative and Parliamentary Affairs Division, Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs.
2. Prof. Sirajul Islam, "Constitutional Amendments", Banglapedia. Retrieved 2012-

05-28. 3. Glendon, Mary Ann (2002). A world made new: Eleanor Roosevelt and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Random House. ISBN 978-0-375-760464. 4. UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, In Larger Freedom: Towards Development, Security and Human Rights for All, 2005.
5. International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR),

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. Retrieved 9 October 2009. 6. International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, UN. 2012-03-06. Retrieved 2012-03-06. 7. Md. Abdul Halim, Constitution, constitutional law and politics: Bangladesh perspectives, CCB Foundation, Dhaka, p -75-95. 8. Human Rights Watch,