History and current status of daylight saving time in Bangladesh.
What is Daylight Saving Time
It often refers to as “Summer Time”, “DST” or “Daylight Savings Time”. DST is a way of making better use of the daylight by setting the clocks forward one hour during the long days of summer, and back again in the fall.
History of DST
In 1784, Benjamin Franklin first suggested Daylight Saving Time. But modern DST was not proposed until 1895 when an entomologist from New Zealand, George Vernon Hudson, presented a proposal for a two-hour daylight saving shift to the Wellington Philosophical Society.
DST concept was mainly credited to an English builder, William Willett in 1905, when he presented the idea to advance the clock during the summer months. But his proposal was published two years later and introduced to the House of Commons in February 1908. The first Daylight Saving Bill was examined by a select committee but was never made into a law. It was not until World War – I, in 1916, that DST was adopted and implemented by several countries in Europe who initially rejected the idea.
DST in Bangladesh
Bangladesh Daylight Saving Time, commonly abbreviated as BDST is the time zone of Bangladesh which was observed throughout the whole country, with a time offset of UTC+7:00.
Bangladesh’s government introduced DST on a trial basis in 2009 in an attempt to manage the country’s electricity crisis. Power production in Bangladesh falls short of its peak demand by about 1,200 megawatts and blackouts are common, Bangladeshi media reported. According to the prime minister’s press service, introducing DST in 2009 helped the country reduce its peak electricity demand by about 200 megawatts. Bangladesh observed daylight saving time between June 19, 2009 and December 31, 2009.
On June 1, 2009, the Government of Bangladesh introduced the UTC+7 offset to utilize daylight savings. Following this decision, the time was advanced by 1 hour on June 19, 2009 at midnight. Prior to that, the country observed a time offset of UTC+6. Former time offset UTC+6 was resumed on January 1, 2010.
In 2010, DST was supposed to be used between 1 April and 31 October 2010, but it was cancelled. On March 22, 2010, Bangladeshi prime minister’s press service announced that, “Bangladesh will not observe daylight saving time (DST) in 2010”. The Cabinet decided to cancel its earlier plan to introduce DST on a permanent basis in this country. The government cited “public interest” as well as concern for school children who would have to wake up before dawn to be at school by 7am (07:00) among the reasons for the decision to cancel the DST plan.