Citizens lax about death certificates

Udisa Islam
Published : 09:30, Nov 02, 2019 | Updated : 14:18, Nov 02, 2019

As much as birth-registration is given importance, citizens still dilly-dally with the death-registrations.
Experts feel that the explanation for such behaviour could well be that birth certificates are needed somewhat more than death certificates.
They say that a 100 percent death registration in the country hasn’t been possible. Since people often resort to illegal means to obtain birth certificates, much valuable data will be rendered useless, unless such practices are stopped immediately.
The government passed legislation making birth and death certificates compulsory in 2004. It was implemented in 2006.
Currently, the city corporations, municipalities and union councils have facilities for these registrations.
According to the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistic, in 2018 the death rate was 5 in every 1,000. In 2014 the number stood at 5.2.
In 2014 death rate for children was 30 every 1,000 which came down to 22 in 2018.
According to the employees involved with the work, nearly 170 million registered for birth certificates while the figure was only 9.3 million for deaths.
Additional Secretary of the registration project Manik Lal Banik told Bangla Tribune that 100 percent registration of deaths had not been possible.
“Since birth certificates are compulsory for ensuring the rights of a citizen, people give it more importance,” he said.
He added that the families were less concerned over death certificates unless they were needed for pensions, insurance claims or mutations.
Former project director AKM Saiful Islam Chowdhury echoed that, adding that people try to find ways for multiple birth registrations as it’s needed for everything including school admissions and jobs.
Chowdhury said that people working with the registration process did not get monthly salaries, and they worked as entrepreneurs. “Hence they have a lax attitude towards the matter.”
He added that despite the need, there were people who don’t have birth registration and as a result were not able to register for death certificates.