Human Interest Stories

Partnership with the Local Government is Mutually Responsive

Abul Kalam Azad Bhuiyan is a young vibrant Union Parishad member at Muradpur Union, Shitakunda, Chittagong. He returned home to serve his community leaving behind a lucrative job in the Middle East. Being elected the local government representative of Muradpur Union has opened doors for Abul Kalam to address a whole host of issues that would improve the quality of...

‘Two Finger Test’ on sexual assault victims under Review

Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust (BLAST), one of the partner organisations of Community Legal Services (CLS), filed a public interest litigation writ petition before the High Court Division of the Supreme Court against the government of Bangladesh, alleging that the medical procedures routinely performed during sexual assault investigations violate the Bangladeshi Constitution. The complaint centred on the ‘Two Finger...

Review and Reform of Laws and Procedures on Investigation and Prosecution of Rape

(Advocacy for repeal of requirements re past sexual history in rape cases, prohibition of two finger test, proposals for reform of rape definition, and procedures for investigation and prosecution) According to Section 32 of the Women and Children Repression Prevention Act, 2000, which enumerates the collection of medico-legal evidence, a victim should be examined by a doctor in a government...

PIL for Realisation of Compensation for Workplace Deaths and Injuries

One year on eighteen year old Reba Khanom from Duttadanga, Gopalganj reflects on her dreadful memories of entrapment at her workplace which was located in the sixth floor of the eighth storied Rana Plaza multicomplex. She was steering her sewing machine like any other day when all of a sudden the hell broke loose with the building collapsing. The sound...

Dulali Talukdar – A Walking Signboard of CLS Rafinagar, Derai, Shunamgonj

Dulali quickly picks herself up from the decrepit bench at the roadside tea stall as she gazes at the setting sun. She has been walking for three hours now and would like to reach her destination before sunset. It would take her another two hours to reach Alipur village in Rafinagar union. The sun sets early at this time of...

An Abusive Husband Cannot Be Godlike! Shudha, Khagaura, Rafinagar, Derai, Shunamgonj

Shudha Talukdar  grew  up with  the  belief that for  a  Hindu woman ‘husband is next to God’ and  a  woman  is ‘incomplete without  a husband’. Therefore  she was  very happy when her marriage was arranged with an agricultural labourer  living  next  door  who  is also  a  relative. Shudha comes from a fatherless poor landless family in  Rafinagar,  Derai,  Shunamganj, mostly ...

Shupriya’s Dreams are Shattered Pettachori, Shubholong, Rangamati

Despite poverty and hardship Mahima Chakma saved up towards sending the eldest of her five daughters, Shupriya Chakma to college in Rangamati (district headquarter) in the hope that Shupriya would have a better future. Shupriya was the first from her family and from Pettachori village to pursue college Shupriya had to cross ten hills on  foot  to  reach    ...

Love’s Labor Lost! Nuri Begum, Sholokbohor, Chittagong

Nuri Begum, a mother of three children, lives in a squalid slum in Sholokbohor which is in ward 14 of Chittagong City Corporation. Originally from Jessore twenty three years ago, Nuri got married to a man in Chittagong at the age of fourteen. Very soon her life turned bitter as wife battering became second nature to her husband. Lonely and...

Azmeri Khan and Other Women in the BNWLA Shelter Home

Trafficking has emerged as one of the most pervasive forms of human rights violation of women and children. Trafficking of women and children has become a growing social and political concern not only globally but also nationally. The Bangladesh National Women Lawyers’ Association (BNWLA) has been a pioneer in ensuring greater access to justice by disadvantaged women and children who...

Safeguarding the Environment for the People

Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA), one of the Community Legal Services (CLS) partner organisations, has been working with the aim of establishing a sound environment and ecological order for all using the law as a tool since its inception. The efforts of BELA through Public Interest Litigation (PIL) have truly popularised the concept of ‘Environmental Justice’ in the country Currently,...

Persons under Threat of Eviction Have Rights Too!

Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust (BLAST), one of the Community Legal Services (CLS) partner organisations, has recently filed a Writ Petition in the High Court on behalf of several residents of a khas land in Rangpur District. Their appeal against the unlawful eviction includes not only asking the High Court to enforce the requirement of prior notice and arrangements...

Recognising the role of women in the Liberation War

The ‘Birangonas’ are the women who had been brutally tortured and victimised during the Liberation War of Bangladesh in 1971 and stigmatized for the rest of their lives. Though they had played a significantly important role in achieving our freedom after the long nine months of war, they not been recognized nor given their due respect in 43 years. The...

Legal Advice through Teleconferencing Facilities

Bangladesh National Women Lawyers’ Association (BNWLA), one of the Community Legal Services (CLS) partner organisations, has recently started providing legal services to their clients by introducing video conferencing facilities through Skype in their five selected CLS centres on a pilot basis. The centres located at Gaibandha, Kurigram, Jamalpur, Dinajpur and Khulna districts are playing a vital role by providing specific...