The Hon’ble Law Minister of Bangladesh, Mr. Anisul Haque, has promised civil society representatives to amend the ‘Foreign Donations (Voluntary Activities) Regulation Act (FDRA), 2016’ and the ‘Digital Security Act (DSA), 2018′, which were discussed in the “Shaping of Third Sector Laws and Policies” program organized by Counterpart International and International Center for Not-for-Profit Law (ICNL) under USAID’s Promoting Advocacy and Rights Activity on March 6, 2023.
The program aimed to provide recommendations and opinions from various stakeholders, including educationists, intellectuals, development practitioners, journalists, and democracy advocates, on how to improve these laws’ implementation and mitigate their constraints on civil society.
Followed by ICNL’s Consultant, Sharmin Khan’s presentation on the keynote paper, the panel discussants Dr. Iftekharuzzaman, Shaheen Anam, Professor CR Abrar, Barrister Jyotirmoy Barua, considering the constraints imposed on civil society by the FDRA and the DSA, proposed amendments, additions, and repeals to specific sections of these laws. In response, the Hon’ble Minister promised to revise and refine the various rules of the DSA and amend the FDRA through further discussions with civil society representatives.
The USAID’s Acting Office Director, Democracy, Human Rights and Governance (DRG), Medhawi Giri supported the panelists’ recommendations and hoped for effective legislative action soon. The Counterpart International Chief of Party Mainuddin Ahmed thanked the participants for their valuable feedback.
Media Coverage: Dhaka Tribune