Juvenile Justice System in Bangladesh – An Appraisal

Absar Aftab Absar
Assistant Professor, Lloyd Law College, India.

Volume III, Issue V, 2020

Bangladesh became independent in 1971 and after going through long periods of political turmoil finally became a parliamentary democracy in 1991. Children Act – 1974, which was based on some old laws of Bengal and some elements from Cr.P.C of Pakistan, of which Bangladesh was a part, did not provide a comprehensive code for juvenile justice. According to this Act, a child is defined as a person under the age of 16 years. The provision related to the trial of the juvenile is stipulated in the Criminal Procedure Code of Bangladesh itself.

The Children Act – 1974 stipulates that, on arrest of the child the police is required to inform the parent or guardian of such arrest and also specify the date of appearance in the court for the same. Further, when a juvenile offender is arrested for a non-bailable crime and cannot be presented in the court, the concerned police officer may release him/her on bail. The juvenile offender is to be detained in remand home or a place of safety until brought before court, in case the bail is not possible.

Bangladesh, in view of being one of the earliest signatories of UNCRC, was committed to bring reforms in its Children Act and consequently a new act, Children Act – 2013, has been promulgated which is in line with CRC guidelines. The child is defined as a person up to 18 years old. The Act has provisions for Child Welfare Boards, Child Affairs Police and Probation Officers, Establishment of Children’s Courts and Child Development Centres and Certified Institutes and Legal Representation

The present article shall deploy doctrinal methodology to enlighten the “Juvenile justice system” prevailing in Bangladesh. The study aims to identify the loopholes in the juvenile justice system of Bangladesh and shall suggest suitable amendments required to make the law relating to juvenile justice system effective and efficient.