Activating Village Courts in Bangladesh Phase II (AVCB II) Project facilitates local authorities in making village courts functional at 1,080 unions with financial supports and a tri-partnership with European Union (EU), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Government of Bangladesh. The Local Government Division (LGD) of the Ministry of Local Government, Rural Development and Cooperatives (MoLGRD&C) is implementing this project for creating wider access to dispute resolutions services for the rural people particularly poor and vulnerable at the community level.
Following successful implementation of a Pilot Phase (2009 – 2015), AVCB II Project has been scaled up to 27 districts covering eight administrative divisions.
The overarching objective of the AVCB II project is to contribute to improve the access to justice for disadvantaged and marginalized groups in Bangladesh.
The specific objectives of the project are:
- To make local authorities more responsive to local justice needs and offer appropriate legal services in the form of well-functioning village courts
- To empower local people, especially women, the poor and vulnerable groups to seek remedies for injustices and to resolve their disputes at the local level in an expeditious, transparent and affordable manner.
Up to April 2019 the key achievements of the project are:
- Village Courts Rules enacted in February 2016
- Village courts in 1,078 unions started offering dispute resolution services. In total, 105,595 cases reported (28% by women) up to April 2019, resolved 82,536 cases and 77,123 decisions implemented
- Village Courts Training Manual and Flipchart, revised by the Project, is endorsed by National Institute of Local Government (NILG)
- 27 District Training Pools (DTPs) provided capacity building training to 24,203 service providers (UP chairmen, panel chairmen, UP members and UP secretaries)
- District judicial officers being officially authorized, are participating in village courts training and became part of District Training Pool (DTPs) with the necessary guidance of the Bangladesh Supreme Court
- 27 Districts and 128 Upazilas Village Courts Management Committees (VCMCs) have been formed and are functioning.