Bangladesh has ratified the following documents:
  • Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhumane, or Degrading Treatment or Punishment
  • Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women
  • Convention on the Rights of the Child
  • International Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination
  • International Covenant Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
  • International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights
The following documents further define the obligations of Bangladesh:
  • Beijing +5: Further Actions and Initiatives to Implement the Beijing Platform for Action
  • Beijing Platform for Action
  • Cairo Programme of Action
  • UN Special Session on HIV/AIDS (UNGASS) Declaration of Commitment
  • Universal Declaration of Human Rights
The documents listed above require Bangladesh to protect and promote the following rights:

Right to development
Right to education
Right to equal protection of the law
Right to freedom from inhuman or degrading treatment
Right to highest attainable standard of physical and mental health
Right to housing
Right to just and favorable work conditions
Right to liberty and security of the person
Right to life and survival
Right to marry and found a family
Right to non-discrimination on grounds of age
Right to non-discrimination on grounds of disability (i.e. HIV positive)
Right to non-discrimination on grounds of marital status
Right to non-discrimination on grounds of race and ethnicity
Right to non-discrimination on grounds of sex and gender
Right to non-discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation
Right to private and family life
Right to receive and impart information
Right to the benefits of scientific progress

Constitutional Protection of Rights

The Constitution of Bangladesh can be viewed at

The Constitution of Bangladesh is an important tool for the protection and promotion of human rights. It enables countries to translate international agreements into domestic law. It obliges all branches of government to respect and ensure the rights it enunciates.

The Constitution provides for the protection of the following rights, among others. This empowers individuals in making reproductive health decisions, and helps create economic and social conditions conducive to good sexual and reproductive health.

Right to an adequate standard of living (art. 15)
Right to life (art. 32)
Right to health (art. 15(a))
Right to personal liberty (art. 32)
Right to education (art. 15)
Right to the equal protection of the laws (art. 27)
Right to freedom from discrimination on the grounds of race (art. 28)
Right to freedom from discrimination on the grounds of sex (art. 28)
Right to freedom from torture, cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment (art. 35(5)
Right to freedom of association (art. 38)
Right to freedom of movement (art. 36)
Right to freedom of speech and expression (art. 39)
Right to own and transfer property (art. 42)
Right to seek and obtain redress for the violation of rights (art. 44)
Right to social security (art. 15)
Right to work (art. 20, art. 40)

The Constitution includes other provisions that promote and protect rights relevant for good sexual and reproductive health.

The Constitution explicitly requires Bangladesh to protect human rights (art. 11).

It specifically provides for the right to equality between men and women in all spheres of public life (art. 28(2)), and expressly requires Bangladesh to take steps to ensure women's participation in public life (art. 10). It authorizes, but does not require, Bangladesh to take special measures for the advancement and protection of women and children (art. 28(4)).

The Constitution further obliges the State to take certain steps upholding individual rights. The State must:

  • provide citizens with an adequate and continuously improving standard of living (nutrition, housing, education and medical care) (art. 15)
  • develop and improve the levels of education and public health in rural areas (art. 16)
  • improve the level of public health generally (18)
  • ensure employment (art. 20)
  • remove the economic and social inequalities between men and women (art. 19), and ensure the participation of women in all spheres of national life (art. 10)
  • protect citizens against all forms of exploitation (art. 14)