Volume 4 Number 95 Fri. August 29, 2003    
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Front Pagearrow Classified loans go down on write-off, better management
Classified loans have decreased by 3.10 per cent in six months between December 2002 and June 2003.

After a decrease of Tk 1,858 crore, default loans accounted for 25.

 arrow Tigers brought to earth by deadly Shoaib burst
A breathtaking spell of fast bowling by Shoaib Akhtar ripped through the Bangladesh middle order as Pakistan came back strongly in the second Super Asia Test at the Arbab Niaz Stadium yesterday.
 arrow Hartal halts life to protest Khulna leader's murder
The countrywide dawn-to-dusk hartal enforced by main opposition Awami League (AL) to protest the killing of a Khulna city AL leader passed amid stray violence that injured about 50 leaders and activists,
 arrow Red alert in Khulna to nab Imam killers
A red alert was sounded in some southwestern districts and police raided criminals' hideouts in Bagerhat and Khulna to arrest the killers of Awami League (AL) leader Monzurul Imam.
 arrow Tidal waves wash away 100 houses in Kutubdia
Tidal waves of the Bay of Bengal washed away over 100 houses on the offshore island of Kutubdia yesterday, making about 500 people homeless.
 arrow Power div seeks PM's nod before ensuring reciprocal benefits
Even before ensuring reciprocal benefits for the country, the power division has sought the prime minister's approval to relax a rule allowing US company AES to sell its two power plants to British firm
 arrow Outages stop Karwan Bazar dead in tracks
Dhaka's Karwan Bazar, the tinsel area where leading business houses, utility offices and the lone five-star hotel are located, has been gripped by unprecedented power disruptions for the last two weeks
 arrow Iraq data not hyped, claims Blair
Tony Blair yesterday told the Hutton inquiry he would have been forced to resign if the claims about the government "sexing up" its Iraq dossier had been true.
 arrow 22 school kids killed, 20 missing as bridge collapses in India
At least 22 children were killed and 20 others were feared dead after a road bridge across an inlet in western India collapsed yesterday, sending vehicles plummeting into the water.
 arrow Jamal's family rocked by rumours
Panic gripped family members of abducted Chittagong billionaire businessman Jamal Uddin Ahmed Chowdhury after it was rumoured that Jamal was seen dead at Kanchannagar in Fatikchhari.
 arrow 'Bribe denial' led to blackouts at New Market
Leaders of the New Market Kitchen Market Association alleged that Dhaka City Corporation's (DCC) electric department officials had demanded Tk 12 lakh in bribes to reinstall the three transmitters that
 arrow Pvt plants may get nod to manage water, sewerage
The proposed Water and Sewerage Regulatory Commission will encourage private installation of plants to meet the growing demand for water and sewerage system.
 arrow More Ctg cops shifted for crime check failure
Another three officers-in-charge (OCs) of Chittagong Metropolitan Police (CMP) were transferred yesterday.
 arrow US envoy assures PM of assistance
The newly appointed US ambassador to Bangladesh Harry K Thomas yesterday gave assurance of his country's all possible cooperation and assistance in Bangladesh's development pursuit.
 arrow Another kidnap in Ctg
Another kidnap happened in Chittagong yesterday, this time the victim is a schoolgirl.
 arrow Mars delights skygazers in Dhaka
Skygazers in Dhaka yesterday had the feast of a lifetime seeing mars in telescopes as well as on a video screen.
 arrow Promotee additional secretaries get prompt postings
The government yesterday gave postings to 25 newly promoted additional secretaries out of the 97, just a day after their elevation.
 arrow Trust Bank MD axed
Trust Bank Limited, owned by the army, has terminated its managing director, Zahid Hossain, on charge of hiding important information about some foreign transactions and irregularities in sanctioningloans.
 arrow BBC head slams Blair officials at Kelly probe
The chairperson of the BBC yesterday accused British Prime Minister Tony Blair's officials of launching "inappropriate" attacks on the public broadcaster's credibility after it claimed that the case for
 arrow Relatives split over Sept 11 tapes
Transcripts of telephone calls made from inside the World Trade Center on the day it was destroyed are to be published, despite opposition from relatives of some of those who died.
 arrow 47 held for suspected link with clash at Khagrachhari
A total of 47 Bangalees, including their local leader Dr Prodip, have so far been arrested for their suspected involvement in Tuesday's clash with the indigenous people at Mahalchhari upazila under Khagrachhari
 arrow Pick-up runs over one at Dhanmondi
A pick-up van ran overand killed a man during hartal hours in the city's Dhanmondi area yesterday.

The victim, Faruk 30, was an office assistant at New Model High School near Russell Square.

 arrow Judgement on killing of 4 Dhaka Zoo tigers Sept 10
The Fourth Additional Metropolitan Sessions Judge's Court, Dhaka, yesterday fixed September 10 for judgement on the killing of four tigers at the Dhaka Zoo in November, 1996.
 arrow Two rapists get life in Barisal
The Speedy Trial Tribunal (STT), Barisal, yesterday sentenced two persons to life imprisonment for raping a woman.
Businessarrow Dhaka may decide Saarc multilateral tax treaty soon

Bangladesh may soon finalise its position on a multilateral tax treaty proposed to be signed among the Saarc member countries, sources said.

 arrow Guideline for bank directors from depositors drawn up

The government committee on default loans has set a policy guideline for appointing two directors in the board of every scheduled bank from depositors.

 arrow SEC may go for mandatory credit rating for IPOs

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is now considering introduction of mandatory credit rating for companies seeking funds from the market.

 arrow Electro-mechanical engineering thrives on cell phone growth

The rapidly growing mobile phone industry in Bangladesh has opened up a new avenue for electro-mechanical engineering sector as microwave towers are now being built locally, reducing the import cost

 arrow Dhaka, Jakarta to sign counter trade agreement this year

Bangladesh and Indonesia are going to sign a counter trade agreement (CTA) this year to initiate bilateral trade under a new arrangement.

 arrow IMF curtails global growth forecast, sees risks ahead

The International Monetary Fund is set to cut its global growth forecast, warning there are still significant risks to a budding economic recovery, but leave its US outlook unchanged.

 arrow Strategic link between S'pore,Thailand gets stronger

Cars loaded with high-tech components made in Singapore could soon be rolling off Thailand's bustling assembly lines, thanks to accords signed here yesterday by the countries' government and business

 arrow WTO set for deal on cheap drugs as US budges

WTO countries looked set Thursday to clinch a deal here to solve a longstanding problem over access to cheap drugs for poor countries to fight diseases such as AIDS and malaria after the US dropped

 arrow Politics to shape Asian portfolio investment flows

Politics will be helping to shape portfolio investment allocations within Asia over the next 12 months, as governments from India to Indonesia prepare to hold national elections.

 arrow EU, Japan concerned at WTO draft plan

The European Union and Japan share concerns about many points in a draft compromise plan to free up world trade, the European Commission said Thursday after talks with Tokyo's farm minister.

 arrow Bush clears way for $500m Iraq export plan
President George W Bush cleared the way on Wednesday for the US Export-Import Bank to start making loans to companies that do business in post-war Iraq.
Sportsarrow Cricket: Javed the fourth
After struggling for two and a half years, Bangladesh opener Javed Omar finally succeeded in getting his maiden Test hundred.
 arrow Cricket: PAKISTAN DIARY
The extreme heat in Peshawar on the second day of the second Test forced the umpires to allow two drinks breaks to be taken in each session instead of one.
 arrow Cricket: Bob's camp will be 'learning discovery'
Former South Africa cricket coach Bob Woolmer has branded his five-day course with the Bangladesh's under-19 boys as a 'learning discovery' for them.

"I provide information...

 arrow Cricket: Shoaib slams slow strips
Pakistan's top fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar bemoaned slow and lifeless tracks and oppressive conditions in his home country after demolishing Bangladesh with a six-wicket burst in the second Test here on
 arrow Football: Battle between Motijheel sides
Defending champions Mohamme-dan Sporting Club take on Arambagh Krira Sangha as the 'Super Six' phase of the Nitol-Tata Third National Football League resumes today after a day's recess.
 arrow Cricket: Azhar to resort to higher court
India's former cricket captain Mohammad Azharuddin will appeal again to a higher court after his suit to overturn a life ban from the game over match-fixing allegations was dismissed by a lower judge,
 arrow Cricket: Martyn joins Yorkshire
Powerful right-handed Australian batsman Damien Martyn has joined Yorkshire for the remainder of the English county season.
 arrow Cricket: 'Don't blame county'

England captain Michael Vaughan was described as "totally out of order" by Worcestershire chairman John Elliott on Wednesday after he slammed the state of county cricket earlier this week.

 arrow Tennis: Federer survives a fright
Wimbledon champion Roger Federer fired 15 aces to fight off a first-round challenge from Argentina's Jose Acasuso while women's top seed Kim Clijsters advanced with ease here Wednesday at the US Open.
 arrow Tennis: Gilbert's new pupil

Andy Roddick has dominated men's tennis since Brad Gilbert took over as his coach, rising to the top of the ATP Champions Race and rivaling Gilbert's former pupil, world number one Andre Agassi.

 arrow Tennis: It's a joke

Serena and Venus Williams were too hurt to play tennis at the US Open, but not too injured to appear on television shows here Wednesday and declare the Grand Slam event diminished by their absence.

 arrow Athletics: Royal performances

Hicham El Guerrouj and Ana Guevara have suffered Olympic disappointments but here on Wednesday they put on a royal show as the former won the men's 1,500 metres while the latter took the 400m.

 arrow Football: Gunners hold their own

Arsenal sneaked ahead of Manchester United at the top of the premier league on Wednesday with a 2-0 defeat of Aston Villa while the champions scored just once in a win over bottom side Wolverhampton

 arrow Football: Beckham on target

David Beckham chose his debut at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium to open his competitive account for Real Madrid on Wednesday, a rare header helping his new side to steamroller Real Mallorca 3-0 in their

 arrow Football: Scottish night

Celtic and Rangers did their country proud on Wednesday night to earn Scotland a double dose of lucrative Champions League football.

 arrow Football: Elber leaves for Lyon

Brazilian striker Giovane Elber has joined French champions Lyon from German title holders Bayern Munich, the French club announced Wednesday.

 arrow Football: Blues to net Makelele

Chelsea's new owner Roman Abramovich was expected to clinch a deal with Real Madrid president Florentino Perez for France midfielder Claude Makelele on Thursday, despite Perez insisting he wanted to

Politicalarrow AL, BNP trade blame for Khulna leader's murder
The main opposition Awami League and the ruling alliance yesterday accused each other of involvement in the killing of Khulna city AL president advocate Monzurul Imam, and both denied the allegationsat
 arrow AL man shot dead, Jubo League leader kidnapped in Kushtia
An Awami League (AL)activist was shot dead and a leader of its youth front Jubo League was abducted in separate incidents in the district in the early hours yesterday.
 arrow BNP plans big for party's silver jubilee
The BNP has taken up an array of programmes to mark its silver jubilee founding anniversary on September 1.
Culturearrow Agony and ecstasy in painting and photography

The duo have done it again. Painter Kalidas Karmakar and photographer Enam-Ul Haque, childhood friends, have teamed up yet again to stir up Dhaka viewers.

 arrow Media exposure, a must for the promising singers: Fatematuz Zohra
She has won the admiration of listeners with her melodious voice. She has an individual style of singing, which distinguishes her from other Nazrul singers.
 arrow Anil Kapoor stars in Sahara's first Hindi film from Bengal
Reviving a trend nearly relegated to history, the Sahara India Group is planning to make a Hindi film on locations in eastern Indian state West Bengal with Bollywood star Anil Kapoor in the lead roleand
Generalarrow Support micro-credit initiatives with bigger loans
Minister for Finance and Planning M Saifur Rahman yesterday said the micro-credit initiatives for empowering women needed to be supported by bigger loans to achieve desired goals in the socio-economic
 arrow Over 26,000 pharmacies operate without licence
Quality of medicines cannot be ensured as more than 26,000 pharmacies have been operating in the country without licence.
 arrow 'Reopen mills, factories'
Several left-leaning political parties and labour bodies yesterday demanded reopening of the closed jute mills and other factories immediately.
 arrow Shun negative politics: Noman
Food Minister Abdullah Al Noman yesterday urged the opposition parties to shun their negative politics and said destructive programmes like hartal and damaging properties would not eliminate violenceand
 arrow Punishment to killers of AL leaders demanded
Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) yesterday demanded immediate arrest and exemplary punishment to the killers of Awami League (AL) leaders Monzurul Imam and Sharif Mozammel Haque.
 arrow Seminar on secularism,Islam held
Speakers at a seminar organised by the Centre for the Studies in Humanities of Dhaka University on Wednesday said some orthodox people have brought a bad name to Islam and created an impression that Islam
 arrow Role of Justice Abu Sayeed recalled
A function was held in the city on Wednesday in commemoration of the opening of the first high commission of Bangladesh in the United Kingdom.
 arrow BN staff course certificate award ceremony held
The certificate Award Ceremony of 18th junior staff course of the Bangladesh Navy was held at Bangladesh Naval Academy auditorium, Patenga yesterday.
Editorialarrow Editorial: Economy in the grip of recession
It is somewhat ironic but not inexplicable that the economy is in a slump, even though some macro-economic indicators have been positive, barring, of course, the rate of inflation.
 arrow How developed is development model?
The last key element of the so-called Washington Consensus is development.
 arrow Man and woman
Man and woman, who are two extremes of humanity, make the centre of its mystery. Take theology. The divine design is for man and woman to be one unit.
 arrow Netrokona-3 by-polls: Signs of maturity?
When the BNP-backed four-party alliance lawmaker of Netrokona-3 constituency Nurul Amin Talukdar died three months ago, little did anyone assume that his second wife, Khadija Amin, daughter of a Narayanganj
Letters to Editorarrow Mars Attack
For the past few days it seems the entire country has fallen under Mars fever. Everyone from grandpa to their grandchildren is simply ecstatic about Mars.
 arrow Reconstruction effort
With the reconstruction effort proving inadequate, near about four months after the end of the Iraq occupation, Paul Bremer, US administrator in Iraq announced at the end of July a "detailed timetable
 arrow "Safe driving"
This is reference to the letter "Safe Driving" (August 27, 2003), by Reazur Rahman.

I am very sorry about his friend. And I am equally sorry to say that, this is an everyday nightmare.

 arrow Why not in Urdu
I am writing in response to the letter written by Mahboob-e-Gaus on August 25, regarding Bangladesh Cricket Team Manager Latif Khan. Apart from criticising Mr. Latif for his audacious interview, Mr.
 arrow Private universities on the loose
Recently it has been reported that the University Grants Commission (UGC) would be launching a crackdown on a specified number of private universities that according to the UGC were operating withoutvalid
 arrow Private universities: Blessing or a curse?
I believe the role of the private universities in providing higher education in Bangladesh is often unappreciated and the criticisms that the private universities are subjected to, are often uncalledfor.
 arrow Another lost project
I am a student of O-level in Maple Leaf International School. My father asked me a few days ago to calculate the ticket cost of the Magnetic Train considering the project cost to be 750 million U$D.
 arrow Grameen Phone and Oligopoly
First of all let me congratulate GP for their success. Mr. Musabber (August 27) should know that like every sector our mobile telecom sector is also operating in a free market economy.
 arrow DU
Mr. Hasan Jahid Tusher reports (DS 24th Aug) "DU Chief Engineer said the concrete structures of the university are being damaged due to lack of maintenance."

This statement sounds good and very reasonable.

 arrow Liberalising alcohol policy
I have read with interest all the letters written on this topic. I would like to make some observations.
 arrow A question
I'm a 3rd year student of DU. A paper of our year final exam will be held on October 2. Now the problem is, the most important Hindu festival of a year, the Durga puja will begin from October 1.
 arrow Maglev controversy
I would like to respond to the letter of Mr Anisul Huq headed "Maglev Train".
 arrow The Bangladesh delegation to Cancun
I take pride in the fact that Bangladesh will be one of the three vice-chairs of this coming WTO ministerial meeting in Mexico and represent our entire continent (ref. "Dhaka Rejects Cancun Draft").
Focusarrow Being caught off guard when next quake hits
As the fear of earthquake looms ever larger and keeps the nation preoccupied with concerns for massive damage to lives and buildings, concerned authorities maintain that there are legal and institutional
 arrow 'There are no legal bindings to follow building codes' -REHAB president
Excerpts from The Daily Star's (DS) interview with the president of the Real Estate and Housing Association of Bangladesh (REHAB), Towfiq M. Siraj (TMS).
 arrow Beyond bondage
The BBC Bengali Section has been broadcasting a special series of radio programmes on the ILO Declaration of Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work.
 arrow Conflict batters women and displaces millions in Nepal
The Maoist crisis is one of the convoluted problems of the present Nepalese chessboard. The history of Nepal goes back to 233 years.
Worldarrow Attacks may hurt peace move with Pakistan: Advani

India's deputy prime minister said yesterday that car bombings in Mumbai and a spate of attacks in Indian Kashmir could hurt a peace process with Pakistan.

 arrow Hotel siege ends in Kashmir: 4 killed
Four people died and seven were injured when a night-long siege of a hotel by Islamic rebels in Indian Kashmir ended in a fierce gun-battle early Thursday, an official said.
 arrow Indo-Pak aviation talks end without any accord
Pakistani and Indian civil aviation officials ended two days of technical-level talks Thursday without an agreement on when to resume flights suspended 20 months ago.
 arrow Lankan reds stage protest against peace parleys
Thousands of Marxist supporters headed to the Sri Lankan capital Thursday on the final leg of a four-day march protesting the Norwegian-brokered talks between the government and Tamil rebels, organisers
 arrow 'N Korean document to be signed today'

Russia's representative at talks on the North Korean nuclear crisis said yesterday all six sides had basically agreed on a document to be signed today and planned to meet again by October, Itar-Tass

 arrow Not all Taliban are bad, say Pak tribesmen

The tribesmen of Mohmand, a hitherto inaccessible strip of Pakistan's porous frontier with Afghanistan, insist al-Qaeda have never been tolerated here.

 arrow Bal Thackeray call for unleashing 'terror' in Pakistan

The founder of Mumbai's ruling far-right Hindu party called for India to unleash "terrorism" on rival Pakistan Thursday to avenge car bombings in the city that left 52 people dead.

 arrow US signals support for multinational force

With the Bush administration signaling for the first time it might agree to a UN-sponsored multinational force in Iraq, the United States and Britain intend to explore a new UN resolution to encourage

 arrow Britons line up for chance to see Blair grilling

Sleeping bags cluttered the pavement outside a London courtroom on Thursday as bleary-eyed Britons and jeering demonstrators lined up to watch Prime Minister Tony Blair face a tough day in the witness

 arrow Hamas rejects call to renew truce

The Islamic radical group Hamas rejected yesterday an appeal by Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat to call a new halt to its attacks on Israel as diplomatic efforts to salvage the troubled Middle East

 arrow Iraqi resistance shows no sign of any letup

A British soldier was killed in southern Iraq, formerly considered an oasis of calm, as resistance to the US-led coalition carried on unabated five months after the fall of Saddam Hussein.

 arrow 'Iran ready to enhance cooperation with IAEA'
Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharazi said yesterday his government was ready to open talks with the UN atomic watchdog about inspections of its nuclear sites and he promised "constructive" cooperation,