The Westminster system is a parliamentary system of government developed in the United Kingdom. This term comes from the Palace of the seat of the British Parliament; the system is a series of procedures for operating a legislature. It is used, or was once used, in the national and subnational legislatures of most former British Empire colonies upon gaining responsible government, beginning with the first of the Canadian provinces in 1848 and the six Australian colonies between 1855 and 1890. However, some former colonies have since adopted either the presidential system or a hybrid system as their form of government; the Westminster system of government is contrasted with the presidential system that originated in the United States, or with the semi-presidential system, based on the government of France. A Westminster system of government may include some of the following features: A sovereign or head of state who functions as the nominal or legal and constitutional holder of executive power, holds numerous reserve powers, but whose daily duties consist of performing ceremonial functions.
Examples include Queen Elizabeth II, the Governors-General in Commonwealth realms, or the presidents of many countries, state or provincial governors in federal systems. Exceptions to this are Ireland and Israel, whose presidents are de jure and de facto ceremonial, the latter possesses no reserve powers whatsoever. A head of government, known as the Prime Minister, Chief minister, First Minister or Chancellor. While the head of state appoints the head of government, constitutional convention suggests that a majority of elected Members of Parliament must support the person appointed. If more than half of elected parliamentarians belong to the same political party the parliamentary leader of that party is appointed. An exception to this was Israel, in which direct prime-ministerial elections were made in 1996, 1999 and 2001. An executive branch led by the head of government made up of members of the legislature with the senior members of the executive in a cabinet adhering to the principle of cabinet collective responsibility.
An independent, non-partisan civil service which advises on, implements, decisions of those ministers. Civil servants hold permanent appointments and can expect merit-based selection processes and continuity of employment when governments change. A parliamentary opposition with an official Leader of the Opposition. A legislature bicameral, with at least one elected house – although unicameral systems exist. Exceptions to this include New Zealand, which changed in 1993 to use mixed-member proportional representation. A lower house of parliament with an ability to dismiss a government by "withholding supply", passing a motion of no confidence, or defeating a confidence motion. A parliament which can be dissolved and snap elections called at any time. Parliamentary privilege, which allows the legislature to discuss any issue it deems relevant, without fear of consequences stemming from defamatory statements or records thereof. Minutes of meetings known as Hansard, including an ability for the legislature to strike discussion from these minutes.
The ability of courts to address silence or ambiguity in the parliament's statutory law through the development of common law. Another parallel system of legal principles exists known as equity. Exceptions to this include India, Quebec in Canada, Scotland in the UK amongst others which mix common law with other legal systems. Most of the procedures of the Westminster system originated with the conventions and precedents of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which form a part of what is known as the Constitution of the United Kingdom. Unlike the uncodified British constitution, most countries that use the Westminster system have codified the system, at least in part, in a written constitution. However, uncodified conventions and precedents continue to play a significant role in most countries, as many constitutions do not specify important elements of procedure: for example, some older constitutions using the Westminster system do not mention the existence of the cabinet or the prime minister, because these offices were taken for granted by the authors of these constitutions.
Sometimes these conventions, reserve powers, other influences collide in times of crisis and in such times the weaknesses of the unwritten aspects of the Westminster system, as well as the strengths of the Westminster system's flexibility, are put to the test. As an illustrative example, in the Australian constitutional crises of 1975 the Governor-General of Australia, Sir John Kerr, dismissed Prime Minister Gough Whitlam and replaced him with opposition leader Malcolm Fraser. Summary of the Typical Structure of The Westminster Model: Type: Bicameral Upper House Lower House Leadership of Parliament: Head of State: Monarch or Ceremonial President Head of Government: Prime Minister Premier/Chief Minister Other titles include, First Minister, Chief Exec
Constitution of Bangladesh
The Constitution of the People's Republic of Bangladesh is the constitutional document of Bangladesh. It was adopted on 16 December 1972, it provides the framework of the Bangladeshi republic with a parliamentary government, fundamental human rights and freedoms, an independent judiciary, democratic local government and a national bureaucracy. The constitution includes references to socialism, secular democracy and the Bengali language, it commits Bangladesh to “contribute to international peace and co-operation in keeping with the progressive aspirations of mankind”. The constitution has several controversial elements like Article 70. Judicial precedent is enshrined in Bangladesh's constitution under Article 111, which makes Bangladesh an integral part of the common law world. Judicial review is supported by the constitution; the advent of British rule in the 18th century displaced the centuries of governance developed by South Asian empires. The Regulating Act of 1773 passed by the Parliament of the United Kingdom was the first basic law in the Bengal Presidency.
The British Empire did not grant universal suffrage and democratic institutions to its colonies. The British granted concessions for home rule; the Government of India Act 1858, Indian Councils Act 1861, Indian Councils Act 1892 and Indian Councils Act 1909 were important laws of government. The legislatures of British India included the Bengal Legislative Council and the Eastern Bengal and Assam Legislative Council in the early 20th century; the Nehru Report recommended for universal suffrage, a bi-cameral legislature, a senate and a house of representatives. The Fourteen Points of Jinnah demanded provincial autonomy and quotas for Muslims in government; the Government of India Act 1935 established provincial parliaments based on separate electorates. The 1940 Lahore Resolution, supported by the first Prime Minister of Bengal, asked the British government that "the North Western and Eastern Zones of India should be grouped to constitute ‘independent states’", it further proclaimed "that adequate and mandatory safeguards should be provided in the constitution for minorities in these units and in the regions for the protection of their religious, economic, political and other rights".
The resolution's status is akin to the magna carta in Bangladesh and Pakistan, in terms of the concept of independence. On 20 June 1947, the Bengal Legislative Assembly voted on the partition of Bengal, it was decided by 120 votes to 90 that, if Bengal remained united, it should join the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan. At a separate meeting of legislators from West Bengal, it was decided by 58 votes to 21 that the province should be partitioned and that West Bengal should join the Constituent Assembly of India. At another separate meeting of legislators from East Bengal, it was decided by 106 votes to 35 that Bengal should not be partitioned and 107 votes to 34 that East Bengal should join the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan if Bengal was partitioned. On 6 July 1947, the Sylhet referendum voted to partition Sylhet Division from Assam Province and merge it into East Bengal. On 11 August 1947, Muhammad Ali Jinnah, the president of the Constituent Assembly of Pakistan, declared that religious minorities would enjoy full freedom of religion in the emergent new state.
Section 8 of the Indian Independence Act 1947 provided that the Government of India Act, 1935 with certain amendments and adaptations would be the working constitution of the Dominion of Pakistan during the transitional period. The Constituent Assembly of Pakistan included 79 members, of whom 44 were from East Bengal, 22 from West Punjab, 5 from Sind, 3 from the North West Frontier Province, 1 from Baluchistan and 4 from the acceding princely states; the Bengali Language Movement and demands for replacing separate electorates with joint universal suffrage were key issues in East Bengal. The first constituent assembly was arbitrarily dissolved by the Governor General in 1954; this led to the court challenge of Federation of Pakistan v. Maulvi Tamizuddin Khan, in which the federal court supported the Governor General's decision, although Justice A. R. Cornelius expressed dissent; the dissolution of the assembly was one of the first major blows to democracy in Pakistan. The Constitution of Pakistan of 1956 was adopted by a second constituent assembly elected in 1955.
It declared two provinces - West Pakistan. The first Pakistani constitution was in place for only a few years. General Ayub Khan staged a military coup and introduced the Constitution of Pakistan of 1962; the 1962 constitution introduced a presidential system in which electoral colleges would be responsible for electing the president and governors. The chief ministers' offices were abolished; the system was dubbed "Basic Democracy". In 1965, Fatima Jinnah's failed bid for the presidency prompted allegations of a rigged electoral system; the Six Points of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman demanded parliamentary democracy. Rahman's Six Points were part of the manifesto of the Awami League, the party which won first general election in East and West Pakistan in 1970; the Awami League ran on the platform of developing a new Pakistani constitution based on the Six Points. The League won 167 out 169 East Pakistani seats in the National Assembly of Pakistan and 288 out of 300 seats in the East Pakistan Provincial Assembly.
The refusal of Pakistan's military junta to transfer power to Prime Minister-elect Sheikh Mujibur Rahman triggered the Bangladesh War of Independence. The Provisional Government of Bangladesh issued the Proclamation of Independence on 10 April 1971, which served as the interim first constitution of Ban
2008 Bangladeshi general election
The Ninth National Parliamentary Elections 2008 were held in Bangladesh on 29 December 2008. The two main parties in the election were the Bangladesh Nationalist Party, led by Khaleda Zia, the Bangladesh Awami League Party, led by Sheikh Hasina; the Bangladesh Awami League Party formed a fourteen-party Grand Alliance including Ershad's Jatiya Party, while the BNP formed a four-party alliance which included the Islamist party Jamaat-e-Islami. The election was scheduled for January 2007, but it was postponed by a military-controlled caretaker government for an extended period of time; the election resulted in a landslide victory for the Awami League-led grand alliance, which won 263 seats out 300. The main rival four-party alliance received only 32 seats, with the remaining four going to independent candidates. Polling in the constituency of Noakhali-1 was postponed due to the mysterious death of the AL candidate; the election for the seat was won by the BNP candidate. On 11 December, Bangladesh Awami League formed a coalition with the Jatiya Party led by Hussain Muhammad Ershad once deposed through mass uprising.
The coalition included some other minor parties. The Bangladesh Nationalist Party, BNP in short, continued with its alliance with Jamaat-e-Islami formed for the national election of 2001 to participate in the 2008 election. If Jatiyo Party wins more than 35 seats, it will be able to negotiate a better deal with Awami League on sharing of power and in forming government; the Bangladesh Awami League decided to participate in the 2008 parliamentary election under the name of "Grand Alliance" with the Jatiya Party led by General Ershad as its main partner. The AL contested the polls for 245 constituencies. Awami League conceded as many as 46 out of 300 parliamentary constituencies to Jatiya Party. Workers Party president Rashed Khan Menon contested for Dhaka-8, its general secretary Bimal Biswas for Narail-1, its politburo member Fazle Hossain Badsha for Rajshahi-2, Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal president Hasanul Haq Inu for Kushtia-2, its leaders Moinuddin Khan Badal for Chittagong-8, Rezaul Karim Tansen for Bogra-4, Shah Ahmed Jikrul for Brahmanbaria-5 and Gias Uddin for Mymensingh-9.
The Awami League kept the Noakhali-1 constituency reserved, where the election has been postponed following the death of Ganatantri Party leader Mohammad Nurul Islam in a mysterious fire. The alliance has kept three more seats open for both JP candidates to contest for. Notably, as of 18 December 2008, some candidates were allowed by the High Court of the country notwithstanding a contrary decision from the Election Commission; the Bangladesh Nationalist Party and its allies contested for 296 out of 300 in the 2008 election. The Election Commission cancelled candidacy of nominees of BNP in four constituencies; the BNP and its allies could not reach a consensus on sharing six constituencies. Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami contested in the election in 38 constituencies although BNP agreed to offer Jamaat 34 seats. BNP conceded two seats each to its three smaller allies which were Bangladesh Jatiya Party-BJP, Islami Oikya Jote and Jamiat-e-Olama-e-Islam. BNP was able to place any candidate for four constituencies which were Barisal-1, Moulvibazar-2, Sirajganj-5 and Narail-2.
However, two BNP rebels emerged as valid independent candidates in Barisal-1 and Moulvibazar-2. They were Jahiruddin Swapan in Barisal-1 and former lawmaker MM Shaheen in Moulvibazar-2. Notably, as of 18 December 2008, some candidates were allowed by the High Court of the country notwithstanding a contrary decision of the Election Commission; the BNP-Jamat led coalition government attempted to run an election in 2006. Awami League and other parties arranged various processions and strikes, protesting that the election result was pre-arranged in the government's favour. In course of time the clash between the Government and Opposition became violent and in the Care-taker Government's period violence engulfed the nation; the President proclaimed his authority as the chief of the Care-Taker Government and had to fall to the demand of the people. With the intervention of the Army the President had to resign from his Chief-Advisor's post and Fakhruddin Ahmed was appointed as the new chief adviser.
The media referred to Ahmed's government as "military-backed". The military-controlled government worked on a minus-two formula which meant ousting Hasina and Zia, who were two popular political leaders of the country. While all political activities were suspended under the state of emergency, the government ployed to recast the political system of the country with people of high national and international stature. In accordance with this plan, Nobel Peace Prize-winner Muhammad Yunus announced the foundation of a new party called Citizens' Power. However, soon Yunus rejected claiming a lack of support. On 5 April 2007, the country's Chief Election Commissioner, ATM Shamsul Huda, declared that the elections would need to be pushed back at least eighteen months. On 12 April, Ahmed announced in a televised speech to the nation that the next parliamentary election would be held before the end of 2008. On 15 July 2007, Bangladesh Election Commission published a road map for the election, promising a compilation of voter lists by October 2008 and an official election call before the end of that year.
The constitution of Bangladesh, provides holding election within 120 days of the formation of a caretaker government. After the election, the Jatiyo Sangshad will have to elect the next President of Bangladesh; the presidential election should have taken place by 5 September 2007 when Iajuddin Ahmed's term expired. But the election was postponed as the Constitut
Prime Minister of Bangladesh
The Prime Minister of the People's Republic of Bangladesh is the Head of the Government of Bangladesh. The Prime Minister and the Cabinet are collectively accountable for their policies and actions to the Parliament, to their political party and to the electorate; the position was absent during years of 1975–78, 1982-84 and 1990-91 due to imposed martial law. In each of these periods, the military junta led by the President had the powers of the Prime Minister. During the period between 1996 and 2008, The Chief Adviser of the Caretaker Government of the People's Republic of Bangladesh used to take over as the Head of government for 90 days during transition between one elected government to another; the Chief Adviser headed an Advisory Committee comprising ten Advisers. With powers equivalent to those of the Prime Minister of an elected governments, his executive power was constrained with certain constitutional limitations; the system was scrapped in 2011 by 15th amendment of constitution to allow political government to conduct any General Election in future.
The current Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina Wazed, was appointed on 6 January 2009 by the President of Bangladesh and she is the longest serving prime minister in the country's history. According to the Constitution the Prime Minister is appointed by the President based upon the result of the electorates choice in parliamentary general election held by the Election Commission; the Prime Minister will be the leader of the majority party in the Jatiya Sangsad and must have the confidence of the Jatiya Sangsad to govern. The cabinet is composed of ministers appointed by the president. At least 90% of the ministers must be MPs; the other 10% may be non-MP experts or "technocrats" who are not otherwise disqualified from being elected MPs. According to the constitution, the president can dissolve Parliament upon the written request of the prime minister; the appointments of the Prime Minister and other Ministers of state and deputy Ministers, shall be made by the President: Provided that not less the nine tenths of their number shall be appointed from among members of parliament and not more than one tenth of their number may be chosen from among persons qualified for election as members of parliament.
The Prime Minister is appointed and sworn in by the President: Bangla " আমি, সশ্রদ্ধচিত্তে শপথ করিতেছি যে, আমি আইন-অনুযায়ী সরকারের প্রধানমন্ত্রী -পদের কর্তব্য বিশ্বস্ততার সহিত পালন করিব: আমি বাংলাদেশের প্রতি অকৃত্রিম বিশ্বাস ও আনুগত্য পোষণ করিব. I shall possess pure obedience to Bangladesh. I shall preserve and secure the constitution and I shall deal with all with equity as suggested by laws, without being affected by fear or mercy, love or hatred." The office of the Prime Minister is located at Tejgaon in Dhaka city. It is considered a ministry of the government and among other duties, provides clerical and other support to the prime minister, governs intelligence affairs, NGOs, arranges protocol and ceremonies; the Leader of the House is responsible for managing and scheduling Government business in the Jatiya Sangsad. The office is always held by Prime Minister of Bangladesh. Bangladesh origins lie in Bengal, a province of the British Raj that included present-day West Bengal. Between 1937 and 1947 it was intermittently governed by a popularly elected ministry, whose head is designated the Premier of Bengal.
In 1947, Bengal province was partitioned into the Indian state of East Pakistan. All three erstwhile Bengal premiers—A. K. Fazlul Huq, Khawaja Nazimuddin and H. S. Suhrawardy—became Pakistani citizens. East Pakistan's history from 1947 to 1971 was marked by political instability and economic difficulties; the nascent democratic institutions foundered in the face of military intervention in 1958, the government imposed martial law between 1958 and 1962, again between 1969 and 1971. Between 1947 and 1971 it was intermittently governed by Governors and Chief Minister of East Pakistan; the modern office of Prime Minister was established following the declaration of independence of East Pakistan with the Provisional Government of Bangladesh on 10 April 1971, of which Tajuddin Ahmad became the first Prime Minister of Bangladesh. Since the adoption of the current Constitution of Bangladesh in 1972 the formal title of the office is The Prime Minister of the People's Republic of Bangladesh. In September 1991, the electorate approved changes to the constitution, formally creating a parliamentary system and returning governing power to the office of the prime minister, as in Bangladesh's original constitution.
In October 1991, members of parliament elected a new head of President Abdur Rahman Biswas. For three decades, Bangladeshi politics have been dominated by Khaleda Zia and Hasina Wazed, they have been the only people to serve as non-interim Prime Minister since 1991. Khaleda Zia Khaleda Zia served as Prime Minister of Bangladesh three times, since 1991. Once in power, Khaleda Zia's government made substantial changes in education policy, introducing free education for girls up to the 10th grade, a stipend for fem
18 Party Alliance
The 18 Party Alliance is an alliance of some Bangladeshi political parties led by Bangladesh Nationalist Party and other right wing parties. It was formed on 18 April 2012 in Dhaka, extending its predecessor the Four Party Alliance; the 18 Party Alliance is formed as an effort to strengthen the anti-government movement demanding restoration of the caretaker government system. The major rival of this alliance is the Grand Alliance led by Awami League which came into power after the election in 2008; the Four Party Alliance was a political grouping in the Jatiyo Sangshad, or National Assembly of Bangladesh. It was formed in 1999 for the 2001 election, consisted of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party, Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh, Bangladesh Jatiya Party and Islami Oikya Jote; the alliance won a substantial majority in 2001, but was defeated by the Grand Alliance of Bangladesh in 2008. On 18 April 2012, the Four Party Alliance took the new name 18 Party Alliance. Total seats: 300 Four Party Alliance: 214 Bangladesh Awami League: 62 Jatiya Party: 14 Independents and others: 14 Total seats: 300 Four Party Alliance: 33 Grand Alliance: 263 Independents and others: 04 Bangladesh Nationalist Party Liberal Democratic Party - LDP Islami Oikya Jote Khelafat Majlish Bangladesh Jatiya Party-BJP Jatiya Ganatantrik Party-JAGPA Bangladesh Kalyan Party National People's Party-NPP Bangladesh National Awami Party-Bangladesh NAP Jamiote-Olamaye-Islam Bangladesh National Democratic Party-NDP Bangladesh Labour Party Bangladesh Muslim League - BML Bangladesh Islamic Party National Awami Party Democratic League-DL Bangladesh People's League Bangladeshi nationalism Politics of Bangladesh List of political parties in Bangladesh Hartal in Bangladesh
Bangladesh the People's Republic of Bangladesh, is a sovereign country in South Asia. It shares land borders with Myanmar; the country's maritime territory in the Bay of Bengal is equal to the size of its land area. Bangladesh is the world's eighth most populous country as well as its most densely-populated, to the exclusion of small island nations and city-states. Dhaka is largest city, followed by Chittagong, which has the country's largest port. Bangladesh forms the largest and easternmost part of the Bengal region. Bangladeshis include people from a range of ethnic religions. Bengalis, who speak the official Bengali language, make up 98% of the population; the politically dominant Bengali Muslims make the nation the world's third largest Muslim-majority country. Islam is the official religion of Bangladesh. Most of Bangladesh is covered by the largest delta on Earth; the country has 8,046 km of inland waterways. Highlands with evergreen forests are found in the northeastern and southeastern regions of the country.
Bangladesh has a coral reef. The longest unbroken natural sea beach of the world, Cox's Bazar Beach, is located in the southeast, it is home to the Sundarbans, the largest mangrove forest in the world. The country's biodiversity includes a vast array of plant and wildlife, including endangered Bengal tigers, the national animal; the Greeks and Romans identified the region as Gangaridai, a powerful kingdom of the historical Indian subcontinent, in the 3rd century BCE. Archaeological research has unearthed several ancient cities in Bangladesh, which enjoyed international trade links for millennia; the Bengal Sultanate and Mughal Bengal transformed the region into a cosmopolitan Islamic imperial power between the 14th and 18th centuries. The region was home to many principalities; as the Mughal Empire's wealthiest province, Bangladesh as part of the Bengal Subah was worth 12% of the world's GDP, larger than the entirety of western Europe. It was a notable center of the global muslin and silk trade.
As part of British India, the region was influenced by the Bengali renaissance and played an important role in anti-colonial movements. The Partition of British India made East Bengal a part of the Dominion of Pakistan; the region witnessed the Bengali Language Movement in 1952 and the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971. After independence was achieved, a parliamentary republic was established. A presidential government was in place between 1975 and 1990, followed by a return to parliamentary democracy; the country continues to face challenges in the areas of poverty, education and corruption. Bangladesh is a developing nation. Listed as one of the Next Eleven, its economy ranks 43rd in terms of nominal gross domestic product and 29th in terms of purchasing power parity, it is one of the largest textile exporters in the world. Its major trading partners are the European Union, the United States, India, Japan and Singapore. With its strategically vital location between South and Southeast Asia, Bangladesh is an important promoter of regional connectivity and cooperation.
It is a founding member of SAARC, BIMSTEC, the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Forum for Regional Cooperation and the Bangladesh Bhutan India Nepal Initiative. It is a member of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, Commonwealth of Nations, the Developing 8 Countries, the OIC, the Indian-Ocean Rim Association, the Non Aligned Movement, the Group of 77 and the World Trade Organization. Bangladesh is one of the largest contributors to United Nations peacekeeping forces; the etymology of Bangladesh can be traced to the early 20th century, when Bengali patriotic songs, such as Namo Namo Namo Bangladesh Momo by Kazi Nazrul Islam and Aaji Bangladesher Hridoy by Rabindranath Tagore, used the term. The term Bangladesh was written as two words, Bangla Desh, in the past. Starting in the 1950s, Bengali nationalists used the term in political rallies in East Pakistan; the term Bangla is a major name for both the Bengali language. The earliest known usage of the term is the Nesari plate in 805 AD; the term Vangaladesa is found in 11th-century South Indian records.
The term gained official status during the Sultanate of Bengal in the 14th century. Shamsuddin Ilyas Shah proclaimed himself as the first "Shah of Bangala" in 1342; the word Bangla became the most common name for the region during the Islamic period. The Portuguese referred to the region as Bengala in the 16th century; the origins of the term Bangla are unclear, with theories pointing to a Bronze Age proto-Dravidian tribe, the Austric word "Bonga", the Iron Age Vanga Kingdom. The Indo-Aryan suffix Desh is derived from the Sanskrit word deśha, which means "land" or "country". Hence, the name Bangladesh means "Land of Bengal" or "Country of Bengal". Stone Age tools found in Bangladesh indicate human habitation for over 20,000 years, remnants of Copper Age settlements date back 4,000 years. Ancient Bengal was settled by Austroasiatics, Tibeto-Burmans and Indo-Aryans in consecutive waves of migration. Archaeological evidence confirms that by the second millennium BCE, rice-cultivating communities inhabited the region.
By the 11th century people lived in systemically-aligned housing, buried their dead, manufactured copper ornaments and black and red pottery. The Ganges and Meghna rivers were natural arteries for communication and transportation, estuaries on the Bay of Bengal permit
Grand Alliance (Bangladesh)
The Grand Alliance is a coalition government in Bangladesh, formed in 2008 and consisted of the Bangladesh Awami League, Jatiya Party, Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal, Workers Party, Liberal Democratic Party and nine other parties. The Grand Alliance won the 2008 Parliamentary election and formed a government in 2009; the Liberal Democratic Party left the Grand Alliance before the election and contested independently. The LDP joined the 18 Party Alliance in 2012. Total seats: 300 Grand Alliance: 263 Four Party Alliance: 33 Independents and others: 04 Total seats: 300 Grand Alliance: 280 Four Party Alliance: Boycotted Independents and others: 20 Awami League Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal Workers Party Jatiya Party Bangladesh Tarikat Federation Bangladesh Nationalist Front