Established in 1952, the Asiatic Society had been known as Asiatic Society of Pakistan, and since 1972 renamed as Asiatic Society of Bangladesh. In establishing the Society, the leading role was played by Ahmad Hasan Dani, the great archaeologist and Indologist of world repute. The other scholars involved in the foundation of the Society were Muhammad Shahidullah, ABM Habibullah, Abdul Halim, and many others. The founding scholars of the Society intended to make the organization a centre of learning specializing on Asian studies.
The Asiatic Society of Bangladesh is a non political and nonprofit research organization registered under both Society Act of 1864 and NGO Bureau, Government of Bangladesh. A premier learned organization in the country, the Society is managed by a 17-member council elected by members. The tenure is for two years. While the day-to-day affairs are managed by the General Secretary and Secretary, the policy matters are being discussed and adopted by the Council. There are several standing subject committees to help the Council in undertaking its policies. The Council meets mandatorily at least once a month. The office bearers and members of the Council work on honorary basis.
As a promoter of scholarly pursuits in the country the Asiatic Society of Bangladesh from time to time elects scholars to the distinction of Fellowship in appreciation of their distinguished contributions to knowledge and human understanding.
At present the Society has 1034 members of whom 606 are for life and 428 are general members.