Two years of emergency rule ends in Bangladesh

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Iajuddin Ahmed
Dhaka, Dec 17: The two years of emergency rule in Bangladesh ended on Wednesday, Dec 17 after an ordinance was passed by President Iajuddin Ahmed on Monday, Dec 15. The ordinance restored  fundamental rights of  the citizens of Bangladesh.

Emergency Powers Ordinance 2007 and Emergency Powers Rules 2007 were repealed by the govt, according to Daily Star newspaper. These laws were brought in to enforce emergency which was declared on January 11, 2007 amid political turmoil over the ninth parliamentary polls that were scheduled to be held on Jan 22, 2007.

The articles concerning the freedom of movement, assembly, association, thought and conscience, speech, profession or occupation, and rights to property became operative with the withdrawal of emergency rule. Those Articles are 36, 37, 38, 39, 40 and 42 of the Constitution.

Effective from Dec 17, political parties and candidates will carry out electioneering for the Dec 29 general election without having to face any restrictions. The government on the other hand will seek to put in place foolproof security measures to deal with the post-emergency period. It has already worked out some plans for that, most local dailies said. The military will start rolling out of the barracks Thursday, Dec 18.

EC Secretariat sources told that the Election Commission will meet with law enforcement officials to discuss security arrangements for the polls. The withdrawal of emergency comes in the wake of the immense pressure mounted on the caretaker administration by political parties and rights organisations in the run-up to the polls.

Bangladesh was last placed under emergency rule in 1990 by former military strongman and President H M Ershad on Nov 27, 1990. Emergency rule was in  place till Dec 6, the day Ershad was forced to quit the presidency following a popular uprising.

ANI

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