looking for

Problems of Democracy- Absence of Rule of Law

Upholding the rule of law is not simply necessary for successful working of democracy and protection of individual rights, but it is also essential for vitalizing economic activities and promoting investment.[1] In democracy, rule of law that means equality before law is a guiding principle. No person can be said to be guilty unless convicted by a court under due process of existing laws. Rule of law is one of the unique characteristics of the Constitution of the Peoples Republic of Bangladesh.
To affirm this fundamental aim of the state, the constitution has made substantive provisions for the establishment of polity where every function of the state must justify his action with reference to law. Article 31 describes, “To enjoy the protection of law and only in accordance with law, is the inalienable right of every citizen, wherever he may be, and of every other person for the time being within Bangladesh, and in particular no action detrimental to the life, liberty, body, reputation or property of any person shall be taken except in accordance with law.” (Constitution of the Peoples Republic of Bangladesh). These constitutional provision concerned to rule of law have not yet to be enforced through existing legal system and institutions of the country. In our country, rule of law became merely a farce instead of making up the sun that shines on democratic governance. There is no gesture of rule of law in the country which is marked by interference by the government with court proceedings, prosecution dictating what orders the judges should give, party workers demonstrating outside the court in order to intimidate judges, lawyers passing resolutions against judge’s orders, threatening judges with their jobs even their lives.[2] Innumerable examples could be given of how laws and the process of justice have been muzzled to humiliate and insult political opponents. Unfortunately, such incidents still continue, to varying degrees under the different regimes since independence of the country. Today it has become the part of our political culture that police took action against oppositions and turned a blind eye to the real perpetrators. In case of bails to the political activists, the judge simply to the wishes of political masters. This severely hinder the path the democratic process to be institutionalized in the country.

[1] Muhith, AMA. op. cit., p. 31.
[2] Ahmed, Maudud, op. cit. p. 378