Courtesy: New Age, Dhaka, 17 July 2010, www.newagebd.com
Headline of the news
All-party JS committee to
change constitution: PM
The prime minster, Sheikh Hasina, on Friday said the government would form an all-party parliamentary committee in two to four days for amending the constitution.
‘The government will amend the constitution in order to uphold the Supreme Court verdict which has declared illegal the fifth amendment to the constitution,’ said Hasina while addressing a meeting of the Awami League Central Working Committee at her official residence Ganabhaban.
She said that the process for amendment to the constitution would start during the current session of the parliament.
The opposition lawmakers have been skipping the session after making a brief appearance in the parliament on June 2, the day the budget session began.
Hasina, also the Awami League president, said that the amendment was essential as military dictators had distorted the constitution.
She hoped that her government would be able to tackle the problems that had accumulated over the seven years before her party came to power in January 2009.
The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court on February 2 upheld the High Court verdict that had declared illegal the fifth amendment to the constitution brought through martial law proclamations after August 15, 1975.
The High Court bench of Justice ABM Khairul Huq and Justice ATM Fazley Kabir on August 29, 2005 delivered the verdict declaring illegal and void the fifth amendment and the martial law regulations proclaimed between August 15, 1975 and April 1979.
The verdict, however, said, ‘… all acts and things done and actions and proceedings taken during the period from August 15, 1975 to April 9, 1979, are condoned as past and closed transactions.’
According to the verdict, such matters will not be deemed illegal or void under the declaration the court has made.
It also said, ‘Condonation of provisions were made, among others, in respect of provisions, deleting the various provisions of the fourth amendment but no condonation of the provisions was allowed in respect of omission of any provision enshrined in the original constitution. The Preamble, Article 6, 8, 9, 10, 12, 25, 38 and 142 remain as it was in the original constitution. Besides Article 95, as amended by the Second Proclamation Order No IV of 1976, is declared valid and retained.’
The ALCWC meeting with Hasina in the chair began at 5:10pm and continued till filing of this report at 10:00pm.