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Marking ‘drug peddlers’ house, unconstitutional

  • Published at 12:49 am September 24th, 2019
HILI-BGB-PIC-1
A house marked as belonging to a drug peddler, in the Hili area Dhaka Tribune

Human rights activists and lawyers stated in their remarks that activity of this nature is unconstitutional and illegal

Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) in Hili has started an activity of hanging placards in front of the house of suspected drug peddlers “This house belongs to a drug peddler.”

To know whether the whole procedure of writing or hanging placard in front of someone's house is the right thing to do, this correspondent called BGB Joypurhat 20 Battalion Commander Lieutenant Colonel Rashed Md Anisul Haque, but he refused to quote himself in regard to this activity. 

But human rights activists and lawyers stated in their remarks that activity of this nature is unconstitutional and illegal. 

Supreme Court lawyer Barrister Jotirmoy Barua told Dhaka Tribune about how BGB is misusing their power and the entire act is illegal. 

According to him an offender may only get punished for his wrong doings, but people connected to that person cannot be punished. 

“The activity carried out by the BGB itself is wrong, as this stigmatizes the entire family as drug peddlers,” the lawyer said. 

Human Rights activist advocate Sultana Kamal told Dhaka Tribune: “In a word: they can't do this. Activity of this nature by BGB is completely unconstitutional and illegal. 

“Our constitutions have directives of how the state should behave with its citizens. The constitution clearly says, if any citizen is convicted for a crime, the punishment can be given to that person according to the law.

“After he/she is convicted, the specific court can declare only specific punishment for specific offence.”

She went on to explain: “For specific offence, related laws have specific jurisdictions to declare punishment; even the court can't declare punishment moving out of boundary of the law. Without a court order no one has the right to take punitive action against another citizen of the country. He may be anyone but not above the law.”

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