Bangladesh apex court wants safeguards against military rule

July 29th, 2010 - 1:11 pm ICT by IANS  

Sheikh Hasina Dhaka, July 29 (IANS) Bangladesh’s Supreme Court has denounced the declaration of martial law in the past and has sought safeguards to end “extra-constitutional adventures”.
Bangladesh underwent radical political and constitutional changes during a 15-year period between August 1975 and December 1990 when martial law was promulgated and the country had a series of military-led governments.

The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court in a landmark 186 page ruling upheld a 2005 High Court verdict that had declared the fifth amendment to the constitution illegal.

The apex court’s order was placed on the website Wednesday, The Daily Star said Thursday.

“We are putting on record our total disapproval of martial law and suspension of the constitution or any part thereof in any form,” said the apex court.

“The perpetrators of such illegalities should also be suitably punished and condemned so that in future no adventurist, no usurper, would dare to defy the people, their constitution, their government, established by them with their consent,” the apex court concluded.

It also said military rule was wrongly justified in the past, and it should not be justified in future on any ground.

“Let us bid farewell to all kinds of extra constitutional adventure forever,” it observed.

Media reports Thursday carried comments that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina could face a political problem in acting against former military ruler Gen. (retd) H.M. Ershad, whose Jatiya Party is a key member of the alliance.

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