The High Court today declared the mobile courts run by executive magistrates illegal and unconstitutional.
The court however condoned all conditions and sentences delivered by such courts.
The HC bench of Justice Moyeenul Islam Chowdhury and Justice Ashish Ranjan Das also directed the government to refund Tk 10 lakh to M Mujibur Rahman, who was fined by a mobile court in 2011.
The money has to be refunded in 90 days.
Following the petitions filed by several persons including one Kamruzzaman Khan, the HC in 2011 and 2012 issued separate rules asking the government to explain why the provisions of the Mobile Court Act, 2009, that empower executive magistrates to exercise judicial powers through mobile courts should not be declared unconstitutional.
Mobile courts, which are constituted under the Mobile Court Act, 2009, are empowered to try a number of petty offences including illegal assembly, public nuisance and illegal connection of electricity, water and gas, and to supervise examination centres.
The government has replied to the HC rule, saying that there is a necessity of running mobile courts by the executive magistrates to punish the offenders on the spots and to prevent them from committing the offences, Deputy Attorney General Motahar Hossain Sazu told The Daily Star yesterday.
Real estate businessman Kamruzzaman Khan, who was convicted by a mobile court, filed the writ petition on October 11, 2011 stating that those provisions of the act that empower executive magistrates to exercise judicial powers are against the fundamental structure of the constitution.