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HC scraps provision for permission to arrest govt officials

The High Court has scrapped the provision of taking prior permission to arrest the government officials and employees on criminal charges.

An HC bench of Justices Md Mozibur Rahman Miah and Kazi Md Ejarul Haque Akondo delivered the verdict on Thursday following a writ petition filed by rights organization, Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh (HRPB).

The court in an observation said that the provision of prior permission to arrest government officials is illegal and against the constitution and fundamental rights.

Senior lawyer Manzil Morshed argued the case on behalf of the writ and he was accompanied by lawyers Ripon Barai and Sanjay Mondal, while deputy attorney general Arbinda Kumar Roy represented the state. Advo Khurshid Alam Khan appeared on behalf of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) in court.

As per Section 41 (1) of the Public Service Act 2018, before the court accepts the charge sheet in a criminal case filed in relation to official duties of a public servant, the arrest can only be made with prior permission from the government or employing authorities.

Later, Supreme Court lawyers Sarwar Ahad Chowdhury, Eklach Uddin Bhuiyan and Mahbubul Islam filed a writ on behalf of Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh (HRPB) challenging the provision of the act.