Public Lecture on International Law and Bangladesh Constitution held at DU
Dhaka Law Review organised a public lecture series on the use of International Law in interpreting the Constitutional Rights in Bangladesh on Tuesday, May 16, 2017, at the Department of Law, University of Dhaka.
Dr Muhammad Ekramul Haque, Professor, Department of law, University of Dhaka was the speaker in the lecture. Dividing the lecture into two parts, firstly he focused on the theoretical concepts on which the lecture was built up and on the legality of the interpretation while the other part was on legitimacy and practical utilisation of International Law, followed by a Q&A session.
Dr Ekramul Haque said that interpretation of constitution through International Law is found in the American jurisprudence for a long time now, despite it being controversial in that legal regime and some of their jurists disapproving of it, yet he favours such tool of interpretation.
Dr Ekram believes that the number of rights mentioned in the Constitution is not definite and the rights are not confined to a single chapter of Fundamental Constitutional Rights. Rather, through interpretation many rights can be deduced, he said, giving the example of 14th Amendment Case of America. He explained different schools' approach to such interpretation and their views. Originalists or Intentionalists and Textualists do not disagree with the idea of seeking International Law for interpretation. However, International Law fits best with the Contemporary Meaning theory. Living Tree theory is also supportive of the idea. The Proclamation of Independence, justifies the use of International Law both from Textual and Originalist perspective in Bangladesh. Then professor referred some cases to justify his saying.
Dr Haque opinied that although Bangladesh is believed to be a dualist country it is heading towards Monism, using the term 'Creeping Monism' where a dualist country is slowly developed on to monism. He referred that the Constitution should be interpreted as an organic instrument keeping it's dynamic characterization in view.
Around more than hundred law students and other guests from different universities including University of Dhaka, Jahangirnagar University, East West University, University of Asia Pacific, ASA University and others, attended the lecture. At their participation, an interactive question and answer session was held after the discussion. In the presence of distinguished academicians and teachers of the law, this session was interchanging and spontaneous. Professor Ekramul Haque concluded his lecture after answering all the questions raised.
Dhaka Law Review is the first of its kind law journal in Bangladesh, established in 2013. The Law Review provides writing, editing and administrative exposure to the law students and also holds public lectures to present cutting-edge research on topical issues. It was their fifth instalment to the public lecture series.
This event was covered by Raihan Rahman Rafid, Student of Law, University of Dhaka