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This profile was last updated on 9/7/15  and contains information from public web pages.

Chief Executive Officer

Phone: +88 ***********  
Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association
1877 Garden Avenue
Eugene , Oregon 97403
United States

Company Description: Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA), a non-governmental organization of lawyers, was set up in 1993 in response to a global movement to protect and...   more

Employment History

Board Memberships and Affiliations


  • master's degree , law
    Dhaka University
  • bachelor , law
    Dhaka University
102 Total References
Web References
The BELA Team | Bela, 7 Sept 2015 [cached]
The implementation wing of BELA is headed by its Chief Executive Syeda Rizwana Hasan. Ms. Hasan is an enrolled lawyer of the Supreme Court of Bangladesh and a member of BELA's Executive Committee.
NGO Shipbreaking Platform » Board Members, 8 Oct 2013 [cached]
Rizwana Hasan is an advocate of the Supreme Court of Bangladesh and Chief Executive of Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA). She has filed and advocated for the rights and interests of the landless, fishermen, farmers, and other affected communities in cases involving encroachment on public property; air, water, and soil pollution; compensation for land expropriation and other disruptive development initiatives. She received the United Nations Environment Programme's Global 500 award for BELA's outstanding work; the Goldman Prize in 2009; and the Magsaysay Award in 2012.
Sandee, 3 June 2015 [cached]
Syeda Rizwana Hasan is an enrolled lawyer with the Supreme Court of Bangladesh. In professional life, she is working for the cause of environment as the Chief Executive of a reputed national Non Governmental Organization named Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA). Her main focus is to promote the notion of environmental justice in Bangladesh. Rizwana did her masters and graduation in law from the University of Dhaka with distinction. She started her career with BELA in 1993 and till today is continuing with the same organization. Rizwana, an environmental lawyer, has filed PILs on various environmental issues most of which have received favourable orders/judgments. She has fought against vehicular pollution, river pollution, industrial pollution, ship breaking, grabbing of wetlands, cutting of hills, unregulated mining, unplanned urbanization, commercial shrimp cultivation, deforestation, loss of biodiversity and so on. Her cases are redefining the current notion of development that is devoid of environmental consideration. Since she is an anthropocentric environmentalist, her efforts are adding values to conventional human rights movement by bringing in the elements of environmental justice. She places people's legitimate rights at the center of her activism.
NGO Shipbreaking Platform » Press Release – NGOs Call on Bangladeshi Government to Thoroughly Investigate the Abduction of Rizwana Hasan’s Husband, 14 Mar 2015 [cached]
Rizwana Hasan, who is also a Board member of the NGO Shipbreaking Platform [3], has been fighting for environmental justice in Bangladesh for more than 15 years. She has been vocal against local and international industries whose activities pollute the environment and endanger the health and livelihoods of communities. Rizwana Hasan received the Goldman Prize in 2009 for her work on the shipbreaking issue, which is of particular concern in Bangladesh where toxic end-of-life ships are beached on tidal mudflats and broken down manually by thousands of unprotected workers . In 2012, she won the prestigious Ramon Magsaysay award in recognition of her dedication to environmental justice.
NGO Shipbreaking Platform » Platform News – Rizwana Hasan receives the Magsaysay Award for her fight for environmental justice, 8 Oct 2013 [cached]
Platform News - Rizwana Hasan receives the Magsaysay Award for her fight for environmental justice
Brussels, 4 September 2012 - Rizwana Hasan, Chief Executive of the Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA), a member organisation of the NGO Shipbreaking Platform, received the prestigious Ramon Magsaysay Award on 31 August, during a ceremony in Manila, Philippines. Rizwana Hasan was amongst a group of six outstanding individuals who "are collectively advancing causes to improve lives and transform societies across Asia", according to the Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation. Rizwana Hasan was especially recognized for "her uncompromising courage and impassioned leadership in a campaign of judicial activism in Bangladesh that affirms the people's right to a good environment as nothing less than their right to dignity and life."
In 2009, Rizwana Hasan succeeded in petitioning the High Court of Bangladesh to ban end-of-life ships from entering Bangladeshi waters, thus effectively closing the shipbreaking yards, and asked for legal guarantees so that the ships would be broken in a safe and environmentally-sound way. Since then, her continuous dedication to environmental justice has regularly brought to light the disastrous conditions in which end-of-life ships are broken on the beaches of Bangladesh.
"We, at BELA, are proud to be associated with a cause [environmental justice] that deeply affects the life of every Bangladeshi and indeed every human being around the globe," Rizwana Hasan said upon receiving the award.
Rizwana Hasan joined BELA in 1993 and was inspired "to work for the cause of environment and explore innovative ways of using law to defend rights and denounce injustices."
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