Monday, 10 June 2013

Bangladesh Hindu charitable endowments law given final approval

The Hindu
Haroon Habib
June 3, 2013
The Sheikh Hasina Cabinet on Monday gave final approval to a draft law to ensure proper development and management of the “Devottar property” ( Hindu Charitable Endowments) and make the transfer of those property, donated to Hindu places of worship, completely illegal.
Once the law comes into effect all such property will come under effective control and opportunities will be created for their development, bringing benefit for the members of the Hindu community, said the government. Till now, such properties are managed by committees constituted locally.
The government would make a list of the property of charitable endowment of the Hindu community with the constitution of a management board.
Briefing the media, Cabinet Secretary Musharraf Hossain Bhuiyan said a central board would be constituted to regulate management of the properties. The vice-chairman of the Hindu Religious Welfare Trust would be the ex-officio chairman of the board while a new post of an administrator equivalent to the rank of a joint secretary would be created to run it. The administrator from the Hindu community would act as the member-secretary.
The proposed law provides for fines upto Tk 5,000 or imprisonment for a year for irregularities in managing these endowed properties. But for misleading the Board with wrong information about these properties, the fines could be upto TK 50,000 or a year in prison.

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