Bangladesh: Political Parties Material

Scope and Content

Pamphlets, leaflets, manifestos, election posters, constitutions and conference reports issued by the Bangladesh Nationalist Party, the Communist Party of Bangladesh, the National Awami Party and the National Socialist Party of Bangladesh.

Administrative / Biographical History

Bangladesh, formerly East Pakistan, became independent in 1971. Sheikh Mujibur Rahman (Mujib) and his pro-independence Awami League party held power until 1975, when he was assassinated following his declaration of a one-party state. Coup and counter-coup followed with the League and the Bangladesh Nationalist Party of General Ziaur Rahman (assassinated 1981) alternating in government through the 1980s and 1990s. The materials here, all originating from this turbulent period, are either the product of the ruling party of the time or of the brief moments in which multi-party democracy was tolerated.


Alphabetically by party, and then in rough chronological order.

Access Information

Open to all for research purposes; access is free for anyone in higher education.

Acquisition Information

Institute of Commonwealth Studies


The Political Archives Project was a 2.5 year project to catalogue political archive material held in the libraries of the Institute of Commonwealth Studies and the Institute for the Study of the Americas to the University and present it as a cohesive virtual collection. The project was successfully completed in July 2005. Descriptions of all the documents may be found by searching the library catalogue at, or via the Political Archives website:

Other Finding Aids

Records at item level on library catalogue (SASCAT)

Archivist's Note

Description compiled by Daniel Millum, Political Archives Project Officer at the Institutes of Commonwealth and Latin American Studies.

Conditions Governing Use

Copies can usually be obtained - apply to library staff.

Custodial History

The ICS political parties collection was begun in 1960-1961, with special emphasis being placed on primary material such as party constitutions, policy statements, convention reports and election manifestos. Since then, the main method of gathering material has been to appeal directly to political parties throughout the Commonwealth, though contributions from Institute members and staff following visits to relevant countries have been significant. More recently material has been collected by means of downloading documents from the websites of the major parties.


Further accruals are expected, some in electronic form.

Related Material

See also Bangladesh: Pressure Groups Material (PG.BG), as well as Political Party, Trades Unions and Pressure Group Materials for other Commonwealth countries and related material in the library's main classified sequence, all held at the ICS.