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Case Number: Writ Petition No. 8655 of 2010
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Case Number: Writ Petition No. 8655 of 2010

Date of filing: 2010/04/15


  1. Shahidul  Islam
  2. Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust (BLAST)


1. Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs;

2. Secretary ,Ministry of Home Affairs;

3. Director-General(South-Asia) Wing, Ministry of Foreign Affairs;

4. Joint Secretary (Political),Ministry of Home Affairs;

5. Director, National Legal Aid Services Organisation;

6.Deputy High Commission of Bangladesh


A writ petition was filed due to the failure of respondents to ensure the repatriation of 36 un-named Bangladeshi citizens languishing in Cooch Bihar Jail, West Bengal, India despite the expiry of their terms of sentence and hunger strike, as reported in the Daily Amader Shomoy dated 27.10.2010, and some 2500 Bangladeshi citizens including 500 ‘jan khalash prapto’ prisoners who have reportedly completed their sentences more than 3-4 years ago, which is arbitrary and in breach of the respondents’ constitutional and statutory duties to ensure consular access.


Date: 01/11/2010


A Rule Nisi issued calling upon the respondents to show cause as to why

  1. The impugned actions being the failure of the respondent no.1 and the respondent no. 3 to comply with their statutory and constitutional duties and to ensure the rights of indigent Bangladeshi citizens to obtain consular assistance including information regarding available legal aid, services and representation, should not be declared to be without lawful authority or of no legal effect and/or unconstitutional being in violation of the fundamental rights of citizens guaranteed under Articles 27, 31, 32, 33 and 36 of the Constitution respectively, and/or a breach of their duties under the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations 1937;
  2. They should not be directed to take action to make available to Bangladeshi citizens imprisoned in India, a list of lawyers and legal aid and services organizations, within a period of six months;
  3. They should not be directed to provide regular, quarterly, reports to the National Human Rights Commission with the names of persons identified as Bangladeshi nationals, including their names of persons identified as Bangladeshi nationals, including their names and particulars, in particular the date of their arrest and imprisonment, and the date of likely expiry of their sentence;
  4. The respondent no. 4 should not be directed to require all District Legal Aid committees to collect information and verify the name of Bangladeshi national who are held in the foreign prisons and provide legal help;
  5. The respondent no. 1 should not be directed to take an initiative to design a scheme to facilitate legal aid and representation as appropriate for Bangladeshi prisoners abroad, including in West Bengal, India, including by forming a Judicial Committee on prisoners comprising retired judges from Bangladesh and India respectively, or involving other experts, to monitor the conditions of prisoners of the respective countries in jails of the two countries;
  6. The respondent no. 1 should not be directed to conduct regular meetings with the concerned authorities being the Department of Correctional Services in West Bengal, India to seek information of the names of  Bangladeshi nationals who are arrested or imprisoned in Correctional Homes across the State.


Pending hearing of the Rule, the respondents no. 1,3,4 and 6 are hereby directed to take immediate steps to ascertain and identify the prisoners of Bangladeshi nationality being held in the prisons of India, in particular West Bengal, giving names and other details of the persons being held there even after completion of their term of imprisonment (Jankhalash) and also to take immediate steps for their repatriation, and to report to this Court within one month as to what steps have been taken in these respects and to submit a report within two months as to the steps to be taken by them to ensure provision of information on lawyers and available legal aid services to Bangladeshi citizens who are arrested or imprisoned abroad, in particular to those who are in correctional centres across the State of West Bengal and other parts of India.


Mr. Justice Imman Ali

Mr. Justice Obaidul Hassan

Area of law

Safeguards on Arrest,
Freedom from torture,
Prisoner’s Rights


Repatriation of Bangladeshi prison in West Bengal Jail Case

Relevant statute

Articles 102, 44, 27,31,32,33 and 36, Constitution;

Aingoto Shohayota Prodan Ain 2000

Database Last Updated on: 2018-09-13 10:36:54