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BANGLADESH: PARLIAMENT PASSES COAST GUARD BILL WITH DEATH SENTENCE FOR MUTINY

February 29, 2016: Parliament passed a bill that allows death sentence for coast guards for mutiny in the force. Once the president signs the bill into law, the coast guards will get death sentence or lighter punishment by court formed in the force or under other laws if they incite or take part in a mutiny or remain silent during and amidst a mutiny.
The legislators passed the ‘Bangladesh Coast Guard Bill-2016’ through voice vote when Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal moved it in Parliament on Monday (February 29).
The existing Coast Guard Act-1994 will get consolidated when the new bill becomes a law.
The bill was sent to the parliamentary standing committee on the home ministry for scrutiny when Kamal placed it on Jan 25. The force works to prevent crimes such as intrusion, smuggling and illegal fishing in the sea, river routes and coastal belts.
The new law has a provision to sentence a member of the force to 14 years in jail for barring any official with higher rank from doing his official duty, threatening him or misbehaving.
A coast guard will be sentenced up to five years in jail for gambling or getting drunk. A member of the force will get up to three-year jail term if he files a false complaint against another member.
The home minister said a new law was needed as the existing one is ‘very short’ and leads to ‘complexities’. (Sources: bdnews24.com, 29/02/2016)

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