List of Presidents of Bangladesh



(Former President of Bangladesh)


Shahabuddin Ahmed, who was born on 1 February 1930 and died on 19 March 2022, was Bangladesh’s President from 1996 to 2001 and its Chief Justice from 1990 to 1995. When Hussain Muhammad Ershad resigned from the position in 1990–1991, he previously filled in as president in that year. In February 1991, he presided over a caretaker administration and staged general elections.

Born: 1 February 1930

Birthplace: Pamal village in Kendra, Netrokona

Known For:

– Chief Justice of Bangladesh

-Former President of Bangladesh

-Former vice-president


-Bachelor’s in economics

-Master’s in international relations

-Public administration at the University of Oxford


-Deputy commissioner of Faridpur

-District and session judge of Dhaka, Barisal, Comilla and Chittagong

-Registrar of the High Court of the then East Pakistan in Dhaka

-Judge of the appellate division of the Supreme Court of Bangladesh

-Chairman of the National Pay Commission


Political Party: Bangladesh Awami League

Alma mater:

-University of Dhaka (Economics)

-University of Oxford (Public Administration)

Spouse : Anowara Begum

Death: 19 March 2022

Dying age: 92

Early life and education:

In the village of Pamal in Kendra, Netrokona, Shahabuddin Ahmed was born on February 1st, 1930. Talukdar Resat Ahmed Bhuiyan, his father, was a generous man. He entered the University of Dhaka in 1948 after clearing the matriculation and intermediate exams, and as a resident student of Fazlul Haq Hall, he graduated in 1951 with a bachelor’s in economics and 1952 with a master’s in international relations. At the University of Oxford, he took a specific public administration course.


In 1954, Shahabuddin Ahmed enlisted in the Pakistani civil service after completing his education at the University of Oxford and the Lahore Civil Service Academy. He served as a subdivisional officer for Natore and Gopalganj. He was also Faridpur’s deputy commissioner. He was moved to the judicial department in 1960. He served as a district and session judge in Comilla and Chittagong as well as an additional district and session judge in Dhaka and Barisal. He worked as a registrar for the then-East Pakistan High Court in Dhaka in 1967. On January 20, 1972, he was promoted to the High Court bench. From 1973 to 1974, he served as a deputy at the Labour Appellate Tribunal.

On 7 February 1980, Shahabuddin Ahmed was named a Supreme Court of Bangladesh’s appeal division judge. On 15 April 1981, he was confirmed in this position. The Commission of Inquiry constituted by the Commission of Inquiry Act regarding the police shooting at students in mid-February 1983 had Ahmed as its head. In 1984, he served as the head of the National Pay Commission and delivered a report that served as the foundation for an increase in pay scale.

Caretaker Government:

On January 14, 1990, Shahabuddin Ahmed was chosen to serve as Bangladesh’s Chief Justice. On 6 December 1990, the then-vice-president Moudud Ahmed resigned and was named the new vice-president because of a public uprising led by opposition political parties determined to alter the government’s autocratic system and the government’s resignation by the then-President Hussain Muhammad Ershad. Later on that day, Ershad submitted his resignation, and Ahmed was appointed as the nation’s acting president.

All political groups, including Ershad, picked Shahabuddin Ahmed to lead the temporary administration that would supervise the fair election to parliament. On December 9, 1990, he took his council of advisers’ oath of office at Bangabhaban, and on December 15, 1990, they had their first meeting. Ahmed transferred legislative authority to newly elected Prime Minister Khaleda Zia during the Fifth National Parliamentary Elections on February 27, 1991. On October 9, 1991, he announced his resignation as president. The next day, he returned to his prior position as chief justice, from which he finally retired on February 1, 1995.

President of Bangladesh:

Shahabuddin Ahmed was elected president without a challenge on July 23, 1996, after the Awami League administration nominated him and was sworn in on October 9, the same year. On November 14, 2001, he left his position in government. He was labelled a “betrayer” by Sheikh Hasina after the Awami League lost the 2001 parliamentary elections. He mourned, “If anything is done in accordance with their wish, then I am an angel; otherwise, I am a demon.”


In addition to serving as a judge on the Supreme Court, Shahabuddin Ahmed served as head of the Bangladesh Red Cross Society from August 1978 to April 1982. In particular, he established the Teligati Red Cross Hospital (Netrakona), which was supported by the Swiss Red Cross. He also established several rural hospital maternity centres. He attended the 10th Conference of Foreign Ministers of the Islamic Countries (OIC) in Fez, Morocco in 1979, when the issue of establishing an International Islamic Red Crescent Society was discussed. He was a member of the delegation from the Bangladeshi government. The Bangladesh Red Cross’ primary purpose was expanded to include family planning and population control at his insistence.

Personal Life:

Shahabuddin Ahmed married Anowara Begum (1937–2018), who passed away in 2018. Together they have two boys and three daughters . He changed several oppressive laws, restoring freedom of the press and expression in the nation.


Shahabuddin Ahmed was admitted to the Combined Military Hospital’s intensive care unit (ICU) in February 2022 because of a condition linked to ageing. At the age of 92, he passed away at the Combined Military Hospital on March 19, 2022.


Rashtrapati Bicharpati Shahabuddin Ahmed Park is the name of a lake in Gulshan, Dhaka, that was given to Ahmed in 2008.


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