SALDG Event: Proselytisation and Religious Freedom in Bangladesh

Conveners: Mariyam Kamil and Rishika Sahgal

Speaker: Jahid Bhuiyan (Associate Professor, Department of Law, Northern University Bangladesh; Research Fellow at North-West University, South Africa; Academic Visitor, Centre for Socio-Legal Studies)

Abstract: A democratic state has a duty to protect the human rights of religious minorities. Though in Bangladesh religious minorities are, in general, free to enjoy their religious freedom, those Christians who try to convert (proselytise) people in Bangladesh are often victims of violence. This paper will examine the situation surrounding both the freedom to convert others (to proselytise), and the freedom one has to change his or her religion in Bangladesh. It will address (a) why a state has a duty to respond to this situation (b) what specifically a state should do to respond and (c) why a state’s obligation should be framed in this way.

Primary Discussant: Farrah Raza is a stipendiary lecturer in Public Law at Pembroke College, Oxford and a Visiting Lecturer at King's College London where she completed her PhD on religious freedom.

Blogger: Asmita Singhvi is a BCL student at Somerville College. She graduated from Jindal Global Law School in 2018 and received the Hemant Sahai Associate Award to pursue the BCL. She is interested in constitutional theory and commercial law.