The High Court (HC) yesterday issued a rule asking the government to explain within four weeks why it should not be directed to enforce properly the law concerning house rent to prevent house owners in the capital from arbitrarily raising rent and taking advance from tenants.

The court came up with the rule after hearing a writ petition seeking directives for strict enforcement of the House Rent Control Act 1991.

Secretaries to the Prime Minister’s Office, Cabinet Division, Law Ministry and Jatiya Sangsad, and mayor of Dhaka City Corporation have been made respondents to the rule issued by an HC bench comprised of Justice Mamtaz Uddin Ahmed and Justice Naima Haider.

Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh, a rights body, filed the writ petition on April 25.

Petitioner’s counsel Manzill Murshid told the HC that house owners in the capital arbitrarily increase rent and evict tenants without notice defying the rent control law.

The counsel mentioned that as per law house owners have to sign agreements with tenants before renting their houses, and have to give written receipts against payment of rent by tenants. And they cannot take advances exceeding one month’s rent from tenants, he added.

Deputy Attorney General Mostafa Zaman Islam appeared for the government.

Source: The Daily Star – 18.05.2010

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