Renowned lawyer Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq has passed away. He was 85.
He breathed his last at 8:30am today while undergoing treatment in ICU in Ad-Deen Hospital in Dhaka, Dr Nahida Yeasmin, director of the hospital confirmed to The Daily Star.
Expressing grief at the demise of Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq, Attorney General and Supreme Court Bar Association President AM Amin Uddin told The Daily Star that his namaz-e-janaza was held at the SCBA premises at 2:00pm today.
He was buried at Banani graveyard around 3:00pm.
On October 15, the eminent jurist was admitted to the hospital with urine infection and old-age complications.
On Saturday, he was released from the hospital as his condition improved.
However, he was again admitted to the hospital on Sunday as his condition deteriorated.
In the early hours of Wednesday, he was put on life support as his condition further deteriorated.
Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq left behind a son -- Barrister Fahim-Ul Huq, now in Canada -- and a host of admirers to mourn his death, Barrister Abbas Uddin, a junior lawyer told The Daily Star.
Law Minister Anisul Huq also expressed deep shock and sorrow at the demise of Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq and prayed for the salvation and eternal peace for his departed soul.
The law minister also expressed profound sympathy to the bereaved family members.
Chief Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain expressed profound shock at the death of Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq.
In a condolence message, he said Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq had discharged his professional duties with honesty and sincerity.
Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq had always assisted the court over important law and constitutional issues, the chief justice said.
Chief Justice also said Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq had unlimited contribution to the rule of law and he was an institution.
He prayed for salvation and eternal peace of the renowned jurist.
The attorney general called Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq "a complete, professional lawyer".
"He was a symbol of punctuality and concentration as he would appear before the court well prepared about the case during his 60 year-long career," he said.
Advocate Amin Uddin said Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq had contributed to the law profession and assisted the court by placing interpretation of law and constitution.
Former SCBA President Zainul Abedin said that the nation has lost one of the greatest lawyers of the country.
"Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq was an expert on all kinds of law and the constitution. He played the role of a guardian during any national crisis," he said.
Advocate Zainul Abedin also said Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq had enlightened the Appellate and High Court Divisions of the Supreme Court by placing expert opinions as "amicus curiae" (friend of court) in many cases.
Editor of Dhaka Law Reports (DLR) Khurshid Alam Khan said he conducted more than 2,000 cases opposite Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq.
"I never saw him (Rafique-Ul Huq) appear before the court without books. He would often demonstrate his sense of humour outside the court," Khurshid Alam Khan added.
Rafique-Ul Huq had moved cases and fought legal battles on behalf of several politicians including Awami League President and current Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and BNP Chairperson and former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia before the Supreme Court while they had been detained during the regime of the military backed caretaker government.
Born in Calcutta (now Kolkata) in 1935, Rafique-Ul Huq obtained his law degree in 1960. He completed MA and LLB degrees from Calcutta University. He became a Barrister-at-Law in 1961 and called to the Lincolns Inn in 1962.
Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq joined the High Court, Dhaka in 1962. In 1965 he became an Advocate, the Supreme Court of Pakistan.
In 1975, he was made Senior Advocate, Appellate Division, the Supreme Court of Bangladesh.
He became the Attorney General of Bangladesh in 1990.
While in the Government legal service, he served as chairman at Bangladesh Bar Council Tribunal and Bar Council Election Tribunal (1975-76) and Bar Council of Bangladesh (1990). He was an elected member of the Executive Committee on International Taxation of the World Association of Lawyers, World Executive Committee, Foreign Trade and Investment (Washington) and Bangladesh Delegate to the UN General Assembly (1990).
He was a member of the National Commission on Money, Banking and Credit and Chairman of Sub-Committee on Banking Laws under the Commission which wrote the current banking laws of Bangladesh (1984), chairman of Corporate Laws Committee (1990), member of the Company Law Reforms Committee (1977) and of the Committee for Improvement of the Stock Exchange Market in Bangladesh.
Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq was the writer of various other laws for Bangladesh.
Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq was active in social work. He was life member and vice chairman of Diabetic Association of Bangladesh and member of its National Council (since 1976), life member of Bangladesh National Society for the Blind, chairman of Society for Education and Care of Hearing impaired Children of Bangladesh, chairman of Management Committee of BIRDEM Hospital and Secretary General of the management board of Dhaka Shishu Hospital.
Barrister Rafique-Ul Huq was the founder of a mosque (Subarna Mosque) at Kaliakoir in Gazipur, member of Dhaka Ahsania Mission Executive Committee, chairman of Ahsania Mission Cancer Hospital, syndicate member of Ahsanullah University of Science and Technology, chairman of Ad-Din Hospital and Ad-Din Women's Medical College, lecturer at the Faculty of Law, Dhaka University (part time) and lecturer at Judges' Training Institute (to train district judges and joint district judges).
He was director of Bangladesh Shilpa Rin Sangstha (BSRS), National Tea Company Limited, Arab Bangladesh Bank Limited, National Investment and Finance Company Limited (NIFCO), founder and sponsors of IFIC Bank Limited, Arab Bangladesh Bank Limited and Maldive Bangladesh Bank Limited and chairman of Hajj Finance Company Limited.
He received Mother Teresa of Calcutta Gold Medal given by the US Senate, Award of Appreciation by Ibrahim Cardiac Hospital, Sponsor Award of Freedom Fighters Museum. He was also awarded by MCCI for contribution to health and hygiene and by Rotary Club of Dhaka South Lions Club.