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Vol 21 No 11 Nov/Dec 2016

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Judicial Activism in Bangladesh: A Golden Mean Approach

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ISBN13: 9781443827331
Published: April 2011
Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Hardback
Price: £44.99



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This book critically examines the evolving global trend of judicial activism with particular reference to Bangladesh. It constructs judicial activism as a golden-mean adjudicative technology, standing between excessive judicial assertion and unacceptable judicial passivity that may leave injustices un-redressed. It argues that judicial balancing between over-activism and meek administration of justice should essentially be predicated upon domestic conditions, and the needs and fundamental public values of the judges' respective society. Providing cross-jurisdictional empirical evidence, this study demonstrates that judicial activism, steered towards improving justice and grounded in one's societal specificities, can be exercised in a morally and legally legitimate form and without rupturing the balance of powers among the state organs. This study has sought to displace the myth of judicial activism as constitutional transgression by 'unelected' judges, arguing that judicial activism is quite different from excessivism. It is argued and shown that a particular judge or judiciary turns out to be activist when other public functionaries avoid or breach their constitutional responsibilities and thus generate injustice and inequality. The study treats judicial activism as the conscientious exposition of constitutional norms and enforcement of public duties of those in positions of power. This study assesses whether Bangladeshi judges have been striking the correct balance between over-activism and injudicious passivity. Broadly, the present book reveals judicial under-activism in Bangladesh and offers insights into causes for this. It is argued that the existing milieu of socio-political injustices and over-balance of constitutional powers in Bangladesh calls for increased judicial intervention and guidance, of course in a balanced and pragmatic manner, which is critical for good governance and social justice.