Bangladesh, Asia

Bangladesh is among the most densely populated countries in the world and has a high poverty rate. However, per-capita (inflation-adjusted) GDP has more than doubled since 1975, and the poverty rate has fallen by 20% since the early 1990s. Dhaka and other urban centers have been the driving force behind this growth. The country has made significant progress in human development in the areas of literacy, gender parity in schooling and reduction of population growth. However, Bangladesh continues to face a number of major challenges, including widespread political and bureaucratic corruption, and discrimination against women and religious and ethnic minorities. LGBT human rights are not respected in Bangladesh, and there appears to be no organized movement to advance such human rights. And such acts of homosexuality will lead to imprisonment up to at least 10 years or even face the death penalty. Also see: Islam and Homosexuality


News & Reports:


Bangladesh charges extremists over gay activist murders

Dhaka (AFP) – Eight Islamist extremists from a banned group were charged by Bangladesh police on Sunday (May 12) for the 2016 murders of two prominent gay rights activists. Dhaka police’s counter-terrorism unit filed the charge-sheet against the eight men, saying they were members of Ansar al Islam, deputy commissioner of police Mohibul Islam Khan… Read more »

The ruins of Bangladesh’s LGBT community

What was once a fledgling lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in the Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka is now destroyed. In 2014 and 2015 the Bangladeshi gay scene was cautiously becoming more open. ‘Rainbow Rally’ pride parades were held and a gay magazine called Roopbaan was in print. But the LGBT community has since… Read more »

Bangladesh students arrested on suspicion of ‘being gay’

Police in Bangladesh have arrested 27 men “for homosexuality.” Same-sex relations are a crime in the conservative Muslim-majority country. An elite police unit detained the men early Friday in a raid on a community center at Keraniganj, south of the nation’s capital, Dhaka. “We’ve arrested 27 people for homosexuality. They are homosexuals. They held a… Read more »

27 men arrested on suspicion of being gay

27 men have been arrested for being gay, a crime punishable by life imprisonment in Bangladesh. The men, mostly students aged 20 to 30, had travelled from across the country to hold a party at a community centre in Keraniganj, outside the country’s capital of Dhaka. The arrests were made by the Rapid Action Battalion,… Read more »

Following Attacks, Gay Bangladeshis Are Retreating Into The Closet

“We have never imagined the situation would be like this.” Bangkok (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Seven months after al Qaeda-linked militants hacked Bangladesh’s most prominent gay activist to death, the South Asian country’s LGBT community remains in hiding, while more than a dozen LGBT people have fled abroad. “The whole community has been sent back… Read more »

Bangladesh Says It Now Knows Who’s Killing the Bloggers

Dhaka, Bangladesh — The young man, inching past a crowded checkpoint near a truck stand in Bangladesh’s capital, caught the attention of an alert police officer. His backpack, together with his appearance, from the unshaven beard to the long Punjabi tunic over baggy pants, set off the suspicion that he was an Islamist militant. The… Read more »

UK government ‘raises LGBT rights concerns’ with Bangladesh

The UK government has raised concerns with Bangladesh after a gay journalist was murdered by terror-affiliated groups. Xulhaz Mannan, the editor of Bangladesh’s only LGBT magazine Roopban, was hacked to death alongside friend Mahbub Tonoy last month, in the latest of a string of killings. An affiliate of terrorist group Al-Qaeda has claimed responsibility for… Read more »

US government: Bangladesh must act over murder of gay journalist

US Secretary of State John Kerry has told Bangladesh to take action after the brutal murder of a gay activist. Xulhaz Mannan, the editor of Bangladesh’s only LGBT magazine Roopban, was hacked to death alongside friend Mahbub Tonoy last week. US Secretary of State John Kerry has now contacted PM Hasina and urged her to… Read more »

Islamist Extremists Weren’t the Only Killers Of My Friend Xulhaz Mannan

I had been trying to avoid it for hours last night but couldn’t escape it any longer, as it was all over social media. “Xulhaz Mannan, 35, the editor at Bangladesh’s first LGBT magazine Roopbaan, along with Tonoy Mahbub, a fellow activist, was hacked to death.” Many news reports read like this and I was… Read more »

Founder of Bangladesh’s first and only LGBT magazine killed

Xulhaz Mannan hacked to death in country where several academics and bloggers have been brutally murdered The founder of Bangladesh’s only lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) magazine has been killed in the latest of a series of horrific murders of bloggers and activists. Xulhaz Mannan was one of two people hacked to death in… Read more »

Bangladesh LGBT editor hacked to death

Bangladesh police say a top gay rights activist and editor at the country’s only LGBT magazine is one of two people who have been hacked to death. The US ambassador to Bangladesh condemned the killing of Xulhaz Mannan, who also worked at the US embassy. Another person was also injured when the attackers entered a… Read more »

Bangladesh: Authorities fail to curb brutal killing spree as LGBTI editor hacked to death

“The brutal killing today of an editor of an LGBTI publication and his friend, days after a university professor was hacked to death, underscores the appalling lack of protection being afforded to a range of peaceful activists in the country,” said Champa Patel, Amnesty International’s South Asia Director. “There have been four deplorable killings so… Read more »

Al-Qaeda offshoot claims responsibility for murder of LGBT journalist for ‘promoting homosexuality’

An affiliate of terrorist group Al-Qaeda has claimed responsibility for the murder of a journalist in Bangladesh. Xulhaz Mannan, the editor of Bangladesh’s only LGBT magazine Roopban, was hacked to death yesterday, when thugs raided his apartment. His friend Mahbub Tonoy, also an LGBT activist, was also killed in the attack. Reuters now reports that… Read more »

ICAAP meet touted as a game changer for HIV/AIDS patients in Bangladesh

The upcoming international conference on AIDS in Dhaka has raised hopes that people living with HIV/AIDS in Bangladesh will finally be freed from social stigma. “This year is critical for us for raising public awareness, building political commitment and strengthening our network and knowledge,” Habiba Akhter, Executive Director of the Ashar Alo Society that works… Read more »

Bangladesh: Third gender hijra groups hold country’s first ever Pride march

At least 1,000 transgender hijras led Bangladesh’s first ever Pride march on Monday, marking one year since the government recognised them as a third gender. Last November, in a landmark decision, the government in Bangladesh approved a proposal of the social welfare ministry to identify “Hijra” as a third possible gender identity. Hijra, often subsumed… Read more »

Changes in social outlook must

There have to be changes in social outlook and public attitude to protect the rights of sexual minorities in Bangladesh, said discussants yesterday. The media should come forward to break the social stigma, and raise public awareness to end negative stereotypical attitude towards sexual minorities, including transgender, lesbian, gay and bisexual people, they said at… Read more »

Striking Black-And-White Portraits Shed Light On Bangladesh’s Third Gender

“I feel like a mermaid. My body tells me that I am a man but my soul tells me that I am a woman. I am like a flower, a flower that is made of paper. I shall always be loved from a distance, never to be touched and no smell to fall in love… Read more »

Bangladesh set to veto UN rights for lesbian and gay people

Bangladesh: Bangladesh says it will veto the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) proposal to provide rights for lesbian and gay people. “It goes against our values. Like many other countries including those Muslims and Christian, we opposed it,” Bangladesh Permanent Representative to the UN Abdul Momen told the Dhaka Tribune. Bangladesh, a Muslim… Read more »

Bangladesh gets first magazine for LGBTI people

Bangladesh’s first magazine for LGBTI people was launched in Dhaka on Saturday in an event attended by the British High Commissioner Bangladesh saw the launch of its very first magazine for the LGBTI community on Saturday at an invite only event. The magazine is named Roopbaan – after a character from a Bangladeshi folk tale… Read more »

From Bangladesh to Brooklyn: An LGBT Activist’s Story

When I ask Shakhawat Hossain if it’s true that he’s the first openly gay Bangladeshi, he quietly demurs. “Lately more Bangladeshis are coming out to their families, and they’re a lot more courageous than me.” The bespeckled, young activist is in the U.S. as part of his four-month Community Solutions fellowship, where he’s being hosted… Read more »

Hijras now a separate gender

They will be referred to as Hijras in both English and Bangla Hijras, who are neither male nor female, from now on will be considered as a separate gender in Bangladesh and will get priority for education and other rights. The decision was made at a Monday cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.… Read more »

Bangladesh jails ‘married’ lesbian couple

Love blossomed in a Bangladeshi factory but their happiness ended with arrest, medical gender tests and prison A lesbian couple from the Jhalakati District of Bangladesh have are in jail because of their relationship. Lucky and Mishti met and fell in love in a factory in the capital, Dhaka. They ‘married’ and have been living… Read more »

Bangladeshi Muslims to protest over Nobel winner Muhammad Yunus’ gay rights support

Bangladeshi Muslim groups have threatened to hold nationwide protests today against Grameen Bank founder Muhammad Yunus over his opposition to Uganda’s persecution of homosexuals in what appears to be the latest effort to smear the Nobel Prize winner Islamic groups in Bangladesh have called for nationwide protests today against Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus over his… Read more »

Bangladesh retains anti-gay sex law against United Nations recommendations

Bangladesh rejects United Nations recommendation to decriminalise its anti-gay sex law at the UN Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) in Geneva last Friday. LGBT rights activists in Bangladesh have expressed dismay at the government’s decision to retain its British colonial-era law that criminalises sex between same-sex couples. Section 377 of the Bangladesh Penal… Read more »

Anger as Bangladesh refuses to decriminalise homosexuality

Gay rights activists have criticised the Bangladeshi government after it rejected recommendations to remove a clause in its penal code which criminalises gay relationships. The reaction followed a session of the United Nations Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) in Geneva on Friday, where Bangladesh accepted 164 of a total 196 recommendations made by… Read more »

Bangladesh lesbian couple threatened with life in jail for getting married

Young couple ran away to the capital Dhaka to get married in secret, but it was not long before the police found and arrested them A Bangladesh lesbian couple is being threatened with life imprisonment for ‘marrying’ in secret. Shibronty Roy Puja, a 16-year-old Hindu, and Sanjida Akter, 21-year-old Muslim, were arrested in Dhaka on… Read more »

Trans women in Bangladesh demand political voice

Newly formed Bangladesh Transgender Welfare Foundation demands equality for estimated 1.2 million trans people in the country Transgender women in Bangladesh are calling for an allocated seat in parliament to speak out for their rights. The demand was made at the launch of a new organization called Bangladesh Transgender Welfare Foundation (BTWF) at Dhaka National… Read more »

Video: Without any window of His own: Being gay in Bangladesh

Bangladesh – Sometimes an image or a word says more than an action. Sometimes things cannot be expressed as bluntly because of fear and stigma. Growing up, we were taught that society is where men and women get married, and that’s how a relationship works. But at least 10% of the total population of a… Read more »

Gay Bangladesh News & Reports 2010-11

The oldest, biggest and the most active internet based mailing list of Bangladeshi gays called Boys Only Bangladesh (BOB). Since the group cannot be found out by searching, advertising is the only way it can reach people across the world. And India being our biggest LGBTneighbour, it is believed that we have a lot of… Read more »

Gay Bangladesh News & Reports 1996-2009

Also See: Islam and Homosexuality The oldest, biggest and the most active internet based mailing list of Bangladeshi gays called Boys Only Bangladesh (BOB). Since the group cannot be found out by searching, advertising is the only way it can reach people across the world. And India being our biggest LGBTneighbour, it is believed that… Read more »