16 JULY

Background & Functions

On threshold we would like to welcome persons for taking interest in visiting this website of Bangladesh Judicial Service Commission (BJSC). To achieve sustainable development in a democratic society we must try to promote the rule of law and eliminate all human rights violation and for that we need a strong judiciary having intellectual competence and functional independence. Fundamentally, the judicial competence to a large extent depend on one of the most vital underpinnings namely the method of assessing qualities of the persons intended to be appointed against judicial vacancies and that aspect of the matter has aptly been touched upon by the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of Bangladesh in its‟ judgment passed in Civil Appeal no.79 of 1999. In 2004 the Commission came into existence for the first time on the basis of a rule. In 2007 it was reconstituted with 11 members taking a majority from the judiciary making a rule named “Bangladesh Judicial Service Commission Rules, 2007”. Later on the Commission was again reconstituted in its present form with 10 members. There is also a Secretariat for providing support to the Commission’s day to day functioning.

Mainly it has twofold responsibilities- firstly to assess suitability of persons applied for judicial appointments at the entry-level of the Judicial Service and secondly to conduct periodical departmental examinations for probationer Assistant Judges whose service confirmation depends on their passing the examination. Being a new-born specialized organization, the commission has to conduct several tests applying various techniques aiming at selecting only the persons having intellectual ability, analytical skill and general proficiency in laws. It would hardly be possible for us to bring excellence in the judiciary, if quality of the judicial intakes suffers in any way.

Relevant operative part of the judgment passed in Masder Hossain’s case particularly directive no. 2 and 4 runs as follows:

2) It is declared that the word “appointments” in Article 115 means that it is the president who under Article 115 can create and establish a judicial service and also a magistracy exercising judicial functions, make recruitment rules and all pre-appointment rules in that behalf, make rules regulating their suspension and dismissal but Article 115 does not contain any rule-making authority with regard to other terms and conditions of service and that Article 133 and Article 136 of the Constitution and the Services (Reorganisation and condition) Act, 1975 have no application to the above matters in respect of the Judicial service and magistrates exercising judicial functions.

4) The appellant and the other respondents to the writ petition are directed that necessary steps be taken forthwith for the president to make Rules under Article 115 to implement its provisions which is a constitutional mandate and not a mere enabling power. It is directed that the nomenclature of the judicial service shall follow the language of the constitution and shall be designated as the judicial service of Bangladesh or Bangladesh Judicial service. They are further directed that either by legislation or by framing Rules under Article 115 or by executive Order having the force of rules a Judicial Services Commission be established forthwith with majority of members from the senior Judiciary of the Supreme Court and the subordinate courts for recruitment to the judicial service on merit with the objective of achieving equality between men and women in the recruitment. In compliance with the above directives of the highest court of the country exercising the rule making power, in 2004 Hon. President framed a Rule known as the Bangladesh Judicial Service Commission Rule, 2004. Afterward in view of the court’s desire another rule known as the Bangladesh Judicial Service Commission Rule, 2007 was made by Hon. President under Article 115 of the Constitution repealing the earlier one. The Supreme Court in its judgment in all gave 12-point directives for making four different sets of Rules including the Bangladesh Judicial Service Commission Rule, 2007 and for amending the existing Code of Criminal Procedure aiming at ensuring the separation of the magistracy from the executive organs of the state and to establish an independent service i.e. the Bangladesh Judicial Service.




Composition

Bangladesh Judicial Service Commission has been established in 2007 by the rule ‘ বাংলাদেশ জুডিসিয়াল সার্ভিস কমিশন বিধিমালা, ২০০৭ ’ i.e. Bangladesh Judicial Service Commission Rule, 2007. According to amended provision of rule 3(2) of the Bangladesh Judicial Service Commission Rule, 2007, the Commission presently consists of 10 members headed by its Chairman who is to be a Judge of the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court nominated by the Hon. President in consultation with Chief Justice. Other members of the Commission includes- (a) Two judges of the High Court Division nominated by the President in consultation with the Chief Justice (b) Attorney General as ex-officio member (c) Secretary of Ministry of Public Administration as ex-officio member (d) Secretary of Finance Division as ex-officio member (e) Secretary of the Law and Justice Division as ex-officio member (f) Dean or any professor of the Law Faculty of any one of the public universities nominated by the President (g) Registrar, Supreme Court as ex-officio member and (h) District Judge, Dhaka as ex-officio member. There is also a full-fledged Secretariat to assist the Commission. A District Judge of the service functions on deputation as Secretary of the Commission Secretariat.

The Chairman of the Commission presides each meeting of the Commission. In his absence according to seniority any other member of the Commission may also preside the meeting. The decisions of meetings are generally taken unanimously. But in the rule there is a legal provision of taking decision on the opinion of the majority members present in the meeting of the Commission.

On receipt of information regarding the judicial vacancies and on the basis of the requisition sent by the Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs the Commission initiates the process of making advertisement and selecting suitable candidates for appointment at the entry level of the service. Taking aggregate marks of both written and oral tests secured by the successful candidates into consideration, the Commission nominates names of persons from the top of the merit list considering the existing quotas reserved for the freedom fighters’ children and other under-privileged groups of people for their final selection and appointment by the President.