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By Ali Mashraf

The Faculty of Law, University of Dhaka organized the ‘1 st Senior Advocate Ozair Farooq Memorial Law Conference 2018’ from September 16-17, 2018. The inaugural ceremony took place at the Nabab Nawab Ali Chowdhury Senate Building. The Honorable Chief Justice of Bangladesh, Mr. Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain graced the occasion as the chief guest while the Honorable Vice Chancellor of University of Dhaka, Professor Dr. Md. Akhtaruzzaman chaired the program.

The Honorable Attorney General of Bangladesh, Senior Advocate Mr. Mahbubey Alam and the President of the Supreme Court Bar Association, Senior Advocate Mr. Zainul Abedin were also in attendance as the special guests. Professor Dr. Md. Rahmat Ullah, Dean, Faculty of Law, University of Dhaka delivered the welcome speech while Professor Dr. Md. Nazrul Islam, Acting Chairman, Department of Law, University of Dhaka delivered the vote of thanks at the event.

Professor Dr. Mizanur Rahman, Former Chairman, National Human Rights Commission also spoke at the inaugural ceremony. Furthermore, Barrister Mohammad Imtiaz Farooq, Advocate, Supreme Court of Bangladesh also spoke at the program on behalf of the family of the late Senior Advocate M. Ozair Farooq. Numerous faculty members of various universities of  Bangladesh, legal researchers and practitioners, academicians, law students etc. were present at the program.

In their speeches, the distinguished guests lauded this initiative of the Faculty of Law and stressed upon the importance of such academic discourse in ushering in a new era of research development in the legal arena of Bangladesh. The honorable Chief Justice, Mr. Syed Mahmud Hossain remarked that such a time-befitting initiative will certainly benefit the academia, bar and bench on pressing national and global legal issues. He also reminisced the late M. Ozair Farooq and acknowledged his contributions to our legal system.

On the following day of the conference, 20 papers authored by faculty members from reputed universities of Bangladesh, researchers from national and international NGOs and legal practitioners from the Supreme Court were presented during the plenary sessions. With the theme – ‘Law, Justice and Society’, the plenary sessions were further divided into four parts, namely – Constitutional Rights and Remedies; Digital Security and Cyber Crime; Environment, Natural Resources and Climate Justice; and Human Rights, Refugee Rights and Realities.

Dr. Shahnaz Huda, Professor of Law, University of Dhaka, started the proceedings of the day with her welcome speech. Dr. Muhammad Ekramul Haque, Professor of Law, University of Dhaka, Mr. Quazi Mahfujul Hoque Supan, Associate Professor of Law, University of Dhaka, Dr. Md. Nazrul Islam, Professor of Law, University of Dhaka, and Dr. Borhan Uddin Khan, Professor of Law, University of Dhaka, chaired the four plenary sessions respectively.

Five papers were presented in each of the plenary sessions and following the paper presentations, the participants posed questions to the presenters and discussed at length on the contents of the papers.

During his closing speech, Professor Dr. Borhan Uddin Khan remarked that such an intense discussion on each of the papers presented would certainly help the authors to further their legal researches on the topics and come up with polished final drafts. Additionally, he reiterated the vision of the Faculty of Law to host the Ozair Farooq Memorial Law Conference biennially. He concluded his speech by expressing his gratitude to the family of the late Ozair Farooq for sponsoring such an intellectual endeavor and to the Faculty of Law for smoothly organizing the conference.

A version of this article first appeared in Law and Our Rights, the Daily Star