Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA)
Introducing BELA As a group of lawyers, BELA was established in 1992 with the broad objective of promoting environmental justice and contributing to the development of sound environmental jurisprudence. Environment and natural resources support the lives and livelihood of majority of the people in Bangladesh in numerous invaluable ways. Two third of the Gross Domestic Products (GDP) comes from agriculture whereas sixty percent of the people have their only protein intake from the rich sweet water fishery of the country. Bangladesh shares with India the largest mangrove forest of the world and the largest unbroken coastline. The country has an extensive network of about 300 rivers with a flow of 25, 000 kilometres. The hill areas of Bangladesh are known for their rich biodiversity and cultural diversity.
While Bangladesh could have been known in the world for its rivers, coastal areas, forests, biodiversity and related culture, the country instead has been portrayed as a land of dense population, disasters and miseries. This has happened mainly due to faulty policy priorities and approaches and of course poor governance that also accounts for non-implementation of environmental laws. A narrow and isolated law/policy making trend resulted in over exploitation of resources nullifying