Vol. 5 Num 934 Sun. January 14, 2007  
Front Page

Emergency ordinance promulgated

The president has promulgated the Emergency Power Ordinance-2007 aimed at ensuring security of the state and its people, protecting law and order and keeping economic activities unhindered.

The other objectives of the ordinance are to ensure uninterrupted supply of essentials and ascertain all service-oriented activities in social life.

The ordinance proclaimed on January 12 will remain effective during the whole period of the emergency declared by the president on January 11 in pursuance of power conferred on him by Article 141A(1) of the Constitution.

Under the ordinance, power has been given to the relevant authorities for promulgation of ordinances to restrict all activities subversive to the state or that which may create panic in public life.

The activities hampering the relations of Bangladesh with foreign countries, disrupting peace in any part of the country or creating enmity, hatred, or confrontations among different sections of society can also be restricted under this ordinance.

Under the ordinance, the government may suspend the activities of all political parties, trade unions, clubs and associations and ban any kind of strike or lockout with controlling dissemination of any news or information in this regard.

Publication or printing of newspaper, book, document or paper and broadcasting and news or information detrimental to public safety can be banned and any kind of such materials can be seized from the printing press along with confiscating machinery of the press or media under the same ordinance.

Disruption in the supply of essential goods and services will be prohibited under the ordinance.

Security of the seaports, river ports, airports, dockyard, railway, roads, bridges, canals, telegraph, gas and power supply system, water transports, aircraft, trains go-downs, factories, business centers and properties of local government authorities will be ensured.

The ordinance will empower the government to arrest or detain any person or restrict the entry, living, stay or movement of any person to refrain him from any activity harmful to the relations with any foreign country or in the public interest.

Under the ordinance, the government can control entry, stay or visit of any person to Bangladesh. The government can also control or disrupt or block any message or news through postal service, radio, telegram, telex, fax, internet and telephone.

The government under the purview of the state of emergency can control the trade and business to ensure smooth supply of essentials to members of the public. It can also control generation, supply, distribution and use of electricity.

The government under the ordinance can take up management of any organisation related to providing essential services to the people and can take also preventive measures against hoarding, black marketing and exorbitant profit on any goods.

Apart from controlling export-import, money market and use, transfer and trade of gold, silver, banknote, currency note, security or foreign currency, the government under the ordinance can take necessary measures by applying the Customs Act, 1969.

The government can arrest and try any person if found responsible for violating rules and orders under this ordinance, and can also award capital punishment or life term or 14-year jail or penalty or both.

The government will make transfer of power to any government official or agency to execute either one or all rules under Clause-3 of the ordinance.

According to the ordinance, no question on the legality of orders to be proclaimed under the authority of this ordinance can be raised in any court.

No civil or criminal case can be lodged against any person in the civil or criminal court, who will act on good faith under any rule or order of the ordinance.

If there is no clear provision in the ordinance, none can file a suit against the government in any criminal or civil court even if affected by any of its rules or orders.