Right to privacy in Bangladesh

The right to privacy is constitutionally protected under Article 43 of  Part III of the Constitution of Bangladesh. It provides for the privacy of ‘home’  against entry, search and seizure, and the privacy of correspondence and communication. 

The Digital Security Act was enacted in 2018 and provides for the legal protection of identity information “which singly or jointly can identify a person or a system” by prohibiting the collection, selling, possession, provision, or usage of such information. The Cyber Security Act, 2023 which replaces the Digital Security Act retains this provision. However, there is no comprehensive data protection legislation governing the protection of personal data in Bangladesh at present. There are piecemeal laws such as the Information and Communications Technology Act of 2006, which penalises the unauthorised access and disclosure of information. Similarly, the Right to Information Act passed in 2009 bars the disclosure of information that may offend “the privacy of the personal life of an individual”. More recently, the e-Government Plan for Digital Bangladesh, published in 2019 also prioritises the protection of privacy and personal information and the improvement of the overall digital security of the country. 

The Government of Bangladesh is in the process of framing its data protection law. The first draft Data Protection Bill was released in 2020, followed by revised drafts in 2022 and 2023.

Judicial System of Bangladesh

The judiciary in Bangladesh comprises the Supreme Court, subordinate courts and tribunals. At the apex of Bangladesh’s judicial system sits the Supreme Court of Bangladesh which comprises the High Court Division and the Appellate Division. The High Court Division has both original and appellate jurisdiction, while the Appellate Division has only appellate jurisdiction and can hear appeals from judgements, decrees, orders or sentences of the High Court Division. 

The Supreme Court is headed by the Chief Justice of Bangladesh who is appointed by the President. The other judges to the Supreme Court are appointed by the President in consultation with the Chief Justice. At present, there are seven judges in the Appellate Division (including the Chief Justice) and eighty-nine judges in the High Court Division. In addition to the Supreme Court, the Constitution of Bangladesh provides that subordinate courts may be established by law. These subordinate courts and tribunals have civil, criminal or special jurisdiction. 

Our database covers summaries of recent and landmark/key judgments from the Supreme Court of Bangladesh on privacy from 2010 to 2019. To access these summaries, refer to our page here. We have also compiled a list of key laws which impact the right to privacy in Bangladesh. To access our page on Bangladesh’s privacy laws, click here.

Disclaimer: Our case summaries cover only the privacy aspects of each judgment. Other legal issues that may have arisen in these cases have not been summarised by us.