Ain o Salish Kendra (ASK) and others v. Government of Bangladesh and others [ Writ Petition No.3034 of 1999; cited as 19 BLD (HCD), at pp 488-500 ]

Country Bangladesh
Category Right to Housing
Date of Judgment _
Link / Attachment View Attachment
  • Description

    On 8 August 1999, the police of Bangladesh at the instruction of the Ministry of Home Affairs demolished Titipara basti (slum), one of the largest slums of the Dhaka City with the proclaimed objective of improving the deteriorating law and order situation the country.  As a direct consequence of this abrupt action, thousands of people became homeless and vulnerable to all other obvious stigmas. The Government evicted them without initiating any rehabilitation scheme that might help them immediately and without adequate notice as required by law.

    Consequently, Ain O Salish Kendra, Odhikar and Bangladesh Legal Aid Services Trust, filed a writ petition filed in the High Court Division of Bangladesh Supreme Court. This writ sought the restoration of the slum dwellers’ homes and huts, from which they had been evicted. This declaration of the wholesale eviction was made without legal authority and more importantly, without providing any alternative accommodation.

    This was the first time in Bangladesh legal history that the Court had dealt with such an intricate economic and social issue, linked with development. The issue of housing and its relevance in national development paradigm, eviction and state obligation towards this denial of human rights arose from this event.

    Source:

    Kabir, Abul H M (2002). Development and Human Rights: Litigating the Right to adequate housing, Asia – Pacific Journal on Human Rights and the Law 1:97 -119, 2002, 1. http://www.sas.upenn.edu/~dludden/HousingRights.pdf

    2. https://www.escrnet.org/sites/default/files/Bangladesh_Supreme_Court_Decision.html

  • Judgment

    In its verdict, the High Court Division of the Bangladesh Supreme Court vacated the stay proceedings order previously granted in relation to the anti-slum drive of the government and which provided a guideline for the proper rehabilitation of the slum dwellers.

    The court also declared that the government should undertake a master plan or rehabilitation scheme or pilot project for the rehabilitation of slum dwellers, giving the dwellers the option to either return to their village home or to remain in the urban areas and contribute to the process of national development.

    Source:

    Kabir, Abul H M (2002). Development and Human Rights: Litigating the Right to adequate housing, Asia – Pacific Journal on Human Rights and the Law 1:97 -119, 2002, 1. http://www.sas.upenn.edu/~dludden/HousingRights.pdf

    2. https://www.escr-  net.org/sites/default/files/Bangladesh_Supreme_Court_Decision.html