Volume 4 Number 209 Fri. December 26, 2003    
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Front Pagearrow Musharraf escapes second attempt in 10 days
Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf narrowly survived a second assassination bid in less than two weeks yesterday when suicide car bombers attacked his motorcade, killing themselves and at least 12 others.
 arrow 5 children found dead in water tank
It was a fatal day out for babies. A water tank of an under-construction building proved a death trap for five playmates, all below 7, in Uttara yesterday noon.
 arrow 191 die in China gas blast
At least 191 people were killed and hundreds poisoned when a natural gas well in southwestern China erupted and released a plume of toxic fumes, medical workers, officials and state media said yesterday.
 arrow Christmas observed
The Christians in the country celebrated Christmas yesterday with due religious fervour and gaiety as elsewhere in the world.
 arrow Rockets shower on Baghdad on Xmas
Anti-American guerrillas yesterday sent more than a dozen rockets and mortar rounds slamming into Baghdad on Christmas Day, hitting hotels, embassies and the vicinity of the US-led occupation authority
 arrow Air France flights cancelled amid terror fears
Intelligence warnings of possible terrorist plots to use aircraft against American targets yesterday prompted cancellation of six Air France flights between Los Angeles and Paris and triggered intense
 arrow Opposition's UP meet hits snags
An opposition-sponsored convention of Union Parishad (UP) chairmen and members scheduled for January has become uncertain as political parties seem inclined to carry on with their separate anti-government
 arrow Dhaka wastes choke Trimohoni
Despite promises by the government and the city mayor, the people of Trimohini are still suffering from health-threatening water pollution in the Narai river area.
 arrow PM plans to shed her squabbling staff
Prime Minister Khaleda Zia is planning to replace half a dozen officials at her office who are divided into two sharp blocs and engaged in a war of attrition in an effort to make the administration dynamic.
 arrow Horror too real to be true
The Rahman family was at the end of its tethers to take in the news of the recovery of bodies of their children -- Sonia and Jamil -- from a water reservoir, after having lost another child only three
 arrow Two left dead inside car on DU campus
Unidentified killers gunned down two people and left them in a car in front of Zahurul Haq Hall of Dhaka University (DU) last night.
 arrow Rejoinder and our reply
The Power Development Board (PDB) in a rejoinder yesterday to a Daily Star report headlined "Tk 7, 600 crore pillage at PDB since 1971" said the parliamentary standing committee on the energy and mineral
 arrow Five ansars linked to Shibir's bomb making
Five ansars yesterday appeared in court on count of abetting Islami Chhatra Shibir (ICS) activists in making handmade bombs in an abandoned residential hotel in Khulna city.
 arrow AL leader killed in bomb attack
A prominent shrimp trader and a front-ranking Awami League leader, was killed in a bomb attack at 3:34pm yesterday in front of a private clinic where he went to visit his ailing wife.
 arrow Convict on the run gunned down
Armed assailants gunned down a convicted criminal in the Advocate Habibur Rahman Mondol murder case at Dhalkanagar in Shyampur yesterday, following a dispute with other members of his gang.
 arrow Rivals kill 3 outlaws in Pabna
Three underground operatives were hacked to death following a gunfight with their rival party men at Borobeel Hatirgara village under Faridpur upazila of the district yesterday morning.
 arrow Over 60 die as Boeing crash off Benin
A Boeing passenger plane crashed into the Atlantic Ocean just after takeoff in the West African country of Benin yesterday, killing over 60 passengers, witnesses and airport officials say.
 arrow 3 killed as bus runs over them in Ctg
Three persons were run over and killed by a bus on Arakan Sarak (Chittagong-Cox's Bazar highway) at Padua in Lohagara upazila of the district yesterday.
 arrow BNP-backed CBA defies BB order to relocate office
The ruling BNP-backed collective bargaining agent (CBA) of Bangladesh Bank (BB) remains indifferent to the authorities' instruction to relocate its office from the bank's main building to its annexe.
 arrow JU students withdraw hunger strike
Students of Jahangirnagar University (JU) Wednesday night withdrew their fast-unto-death demonstration after 37 hours, as the JU authorities and JU Teachers Association (Juta) reached a consensus on resumption
 arrow NZ seabird returns 150 years on
Two British men say they have seen a seabird thought to have become extinct more than a century and a half ago.
 arrow Abducted farmer murdered in Chittagong
Miscreants kidnapped a farmer from his house at Zamirzuri village in Chandanaish upazila yesterday before killing him.
 arrow Clash over land leaves 40 hurt in Sunamganj
At least 40 people were injured in a clash between two rival groups over a piece of land at Digarkandi village in Sadar upazila yesterday.
Businessarrow Ship-breakers set for a slump
The ship-breaking industry has been threatened with the decline in import of old scrap ships for the last two months due to price hike in the international market.
 arrow Huge crowd flocks to housing exposition
Prospective buyers and enthusiastic people flocked to the Rehab Housing Fair 2003 yesterday, the second day of the four-day exhibition, at Dhaka Sheraton Hotel.
 arrow Discounts, gifts add spices to Rehab fair
Land developers, building material suppliers and financial institutions have come up with discount, gifts and special offers at the Rehab Housing Fair 2003 that began at the Dhaka Sheraton Hotel on Wednesday.
 arrow Saarc trade fair from tomorrow in Dhaka
A five-day Saarc trade fair begins in Dhaka tomorrow aiming at expanding intra-regional trade among the seven Saarc countries.
 arrow Saarc meeting on free trade ends with reasonable progress
Commerce officials of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) concluded a two-day meeting Wednesday with "reasonable progress" made on a draft free trade agreement, state media reported.
 arrow Pricewaterhouse Coopers gets PM nod to run Agrani Bank
Prime Minister Khaleda Zia on Wednesday approved the appointment of Pricewaterhouse Coopers of Hong Kong as consulting firm to run Agrani Bank management.
 arrow Businesses seek bank clearing house facility at Benapole
Clearing and forwarding agents and other business people here laid stress on opening of a 'bank clearing house facility' at local Sonali Bank to facilitate easy transfer of money from other banks on business
 arrow US grapples with mad cow shockwave
The United States battled a mad cow crisis, as it probed the first suspected US case of the disease, which triggered bans on American beef exports and hammered cattle prices and fast food industry shares.
 arrow UN approves over $3b budget for 2004-05
The General Assembly has approved a two-year UN budget topping $3 billion, but inflation and currency market volatility are expected to eat up all the increased funding, UN officials said Wednesday.
 arrow China lawmakers set to okay new banking laws
Amendments to outdated banking laws that would facilitate further reform of China's creaking but reforming financial sector are ready to be approved by senior lawmakers, the Xinhua news agency said.
 arrow Malaysia tourist arrivals see 7pc rise in Nov
Tourist arrivals in Malaysia have recovered, with preliminary numbers showing 1.13 million visitors in November, up seven percent year-on-year, a report said Thursday.
 arrow Deflation eats away Japan net asset value for 5 years in row
Deflation is eroding the value of assets held by Japanese, pushing the net national wealth into a fifth consecutive yearly decline in 2002, the government's latest data showed Thursday.
 arrow As slump ends, global Ad giants face new squeeze
Purveyors of glossy advertising and slick marketing are emerging from a long famine to find that even if their clients want to ramp up spending again, they are tightening controls on how they pay their
 arrow Anlima Yarn Dyeing okays 5pc dividend
Anlima Yarn Dyeing Ltd has approved a 5 per cent dividend for the shareholders for the year 2002-03.
 arrow AMCL-Pran declares 24pc dividend
Agricultural Marketing Company Limited (AMCL)-Pran has declared a 24 per cent dividend for its shareholders for 2002-03.
 arrow New chairman of MIDAS
Professor Hafiz GA Siddiqi, vice-chancellor of North South University, has been elected chairman of Micro Industries Development Assistance and Services (MIDAS).
 arrow UPS Asia Pacific regional official visits Dhaka
Manager-Service Contractors, South Asia Pacific Region of United Parcel Service (UPS) Naeem Butt visited Dhaka recently to hold a strategic meeting with Air Alliance Limited (AAL), service partner ofUPS
 arrow JOBS training course ends
A 7-day training course on 'entrepreneurship development and business management' for the potential entrepreneurs of Mirpur Benarashi Palli has ended.
Sportsarrow Football: A draw to savour
High flying Aba-hani dropped their first points of the season but can thank the Christmas stars for not suffering more damage in a 3-3 thriller against fancied Brothers Union in their Western Union Premier
 arrow Cricket: Their biggest challenge
Australia face their biggest cricket challenge in over a decade in the third Boxing Day Test here with India one-up in the series with two matches to play.
 arrow Cricket: A team beaten
Bangladesh A suffered their first setback on their tour of Pakistan when Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) handed down a crushing eight-wicket defeat in the Patron's Trophy at the Karachi
 arrow Cricket: Lara scare before all clear
The West Indies, already hard hit by injuries, had a scare Wednesday when captain Brian Lara was taken to hospital for precautionary X-rays after being hit on the left arm during practice for the second
 arrow Tennis: Roddick, Henin ITF champs
World number ones Andy Roddick and Justine Henin-Hardenne have been named 2003 ITF world champions, the International Tennis Federation said on Monday.
 arrow Cricket: Cairns blow for Kiwis
The New Zealand cricket team, psychologically on the back foot going into Friday's second Test against Pakistan, received further bad news on the eve of the match as a virus struck all-rounder Chris Cairns.
 arrow Chess: Zia shares lead
Grand Master Ziaur Rahman posted his first win in the Leonine Grand Masters Chess tournament with an easy win over his Bangladesh compatriot Amin in the second round at the National Sports Council conference
 arrow Cricket: BCDF team to play in India
An invitational under-19 cricket team under the banner of the Bangladesh Cricket Development Foundation (BCDF), will play in the Under-19 Commonwealth Cricket Championship starting outside New Delhi on
 arrow Cricket: 'Pressure on India’
Steve Waugh says the pressure will be on India in Friday's third Test and that his top-ranked Australia side is relishing the challenge of trailing 1-0 at home in a four-Test series.
 arrow Cricket: Ganguly to follow winning formula
India want to retain the winning formula over under-pressure Australia heading into the third Boxing Day Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground here on Friday.
 arrow Cricket: Hectic 2004 ahead
If you already think England play too much cricket make the most of their inactivity over next two months.
 arrow Football: No fresh Gunners
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is not planning to buy any new players in the January transfer window, despite revealing that Chelsea's spending spree upped the pressure on his team to regain the premier
 arrow Football: That's the Xmas spirit!
Christmas is supposed to be the season of good will to all men -- it is just that nobody bothered to inform Sir Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger.
 arrow Football: Rio was wrong!
Sir Alex Ferguson has admitted Rio Ferdinand was wrong not to turn up for his drugs test.

The Manchester United boss said: "He was wrong not to go he knows that but we have to keep supporting him.

 arrow Football: Becks still bitter
David Beckham has again expressed surprise about the way in which he was forced out of Old Trafford before his highly-publicised move to Spanish giants Real Madrid last summer.
 arrow Football: Nakata loaned to Bologna
Japanese midfielder Hidetoshi Nakata will play for Italian side Bologna in the first half of 2004 on loan from Serie A's cash-strapped Parma, a press report here said Thursday.
Metropolitanarrow Security beefed up at Bishwa Ijtema venue
Amid rising incidents of terror attacks in various parts of the world, the police administration has taken special security measures to ensure security to the devotees at the Bishwa Ijtema beginning tomorrow.
 arrow 'Ensure voting rights of expatriates'
Expatriates Voting Rights Movement and Welfare Parishad yesterday urged the government to ensure the voting rights of the expatriates having Bangladeshi passports.
 arrow Canada introduces permanent resident card
Canadian permanent residents returning to Canada will have to present a Permanent Resident Card or a Facilitation Travel Document issued by the Canadian High Commission as a proof of their Canadian residence
 arrow 1,548 more held, 13 firearms recovered
Police arrested a total of 1,548 people, including three identified criminals, during their ongoing countrywide drive in last 24 hours till 6.00am yesterday.
Point-Counterpointarrow Dollar and the world economy
Last week, the Federal Reserve issued a statement making it clear that it would maintain US short-term interest rate at a 45-year low of 1 per cent for "a considerable period".
 arrow Competitive strategy and real estate development
Good real estate management is critical to being successful. In fact, even if you do everything else properly, you've got big problems if you don't know how to manage the houses and the tenants.
 arrow Just a phonecall away...
Two years ago, I lost my credit card on a business trip. Dialing American Express' 800 number, I asked the polite customer rep to read the list of recent charges.
 arrow The story of 'turkey' and 'rat'
Old habits die hard has once again proved right by one of the most condemned men on earth when he summoned Goebles to his rubbish-filled tomb.
Culturearrow Aatish Dipankar Shorpoja
Natyadhara staged the première show of its 13th production Aatish Dipankar Shorpoja at the Mahila Shomity Mancha on December 24.
 arrow In quest of depicting the depths of mankind
Asked why he had gone into photography at the outset, Anwar Hossain, who had his recent exhibition at Alliance Francaise "A journal of two nationalities", said, "I wanted to go into painting but my family,
 arrow ntv goes round the clock
Dear viewers, are you ready to enjoy another TV channel twenty four hours? New year comes with yet another option for you!

Ntv, the third private TV channel in Bangladesh is starting its transmission

 arrow Ekdin and Tara
Debut shows of two drama films titled Ekdin (One Day) and Tara (They) will take place today at the Lichutola of the Institute of Fine Arts, Dhaka University.
 arrow Music Hour at Etc.
Thank God, it's Friday!' is the watchword every Friday at the Etc. bookstore.
Generalarrow Residents resist move to withdraw BRTC service
Agitated people have resisted the move to withdraw BRTC buses operating in Jaintapur, Kanaighat and Gowainghat upazilas of the district.
 arrow Govt mulls 20pc subsidy for solar power units
Finance Minister Saifur Rahman yesterday said the government was considering 20 percent subsidy for solar power units to bring 50,000 families under electricity coverage by next five years.
 arrow Face wrongdoers unitedly, says Dr Kamal
Gono Forum President Kamal Hossain yesterday urged people to unite to banish vices like godfather, black money, corruption and crime.
 arrow 'Stop portraying women as commodity in films, advertisements'
Speakers at a workshop demanded an end to portrayal of women in mass media as a 'commodity'.
 arrow Developing Asia journalism awards
The Asian Development Bank Institute (ADBI), based in Tokyo, is sponsoring a series of Developing Asia Journalism Awards to acknowledge the contribution of Asian and Pacific print journalists who cover
 arrow Moyeen elected vice-chair of OIC body on science
Minister for Science and Information and Communication Technology Dr Abdul Moyeen Khan was elected vice-chairperson of the OIC Standing Committee on Science and Technological Cooperation (Comstech) in
 arrow Hooligans kill one, set fire to shop in Ctg
Hooligans killed a person and set fire to a shop after looting the goods in separate incidents in the district early yesterday.
 arrow Ex-policeman killed in road accident
A retired police official was killed in a road accident at Customs crossing here on Kushtia-Jhenidah highway on Wednesday.
 arrow Ex-policeman killed in road accident
A retired police official was killed in a road accident at Customs crossing here on Kushtia-Jhenidah highway on Wednesday.
Editorialarrow Editorial: Merry Christmas
There could not be a more important prayer at this moment than that for world peace.
 arrow Editorial: ADB warning on economy
The warning issued yesterday by Toru Shibuichi, Bangladesh country director for the Asian Development Bank, with regard to the nation's economic fortunes was nothing we have not heard before.
 arrow Peace for Palestine
The Israeli government of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon had publicly declared its intention to murder Yasser Arafat, the popularly elected president of the Palestinian National Authority.
 arrow Does practice make you perfect?
Since I have asked you the question, let me have the honour to give you the answer. You can do the same thing again and again, and you will do it better.
 arrow Accepting and rejecting criticism of public universities
The issue is the criticism of our public universities.
Letters to Editorarrow A moderate country
While living outside of Bangladesh, I miss my country very much and am very proud of it.
 arrow Sartorial freedom
This is in reference to Kaniz Fatema's letter "Sartorial freedom," (Dec 22).
 arrow Victory of BJP or communalism?
Asghar Ali Engineer's "Victory of BJP or communalism?" (Dec 22) is an article for the sake of an article. It has no head, no tail, and hangs on some improvised concept of pseudo-secularism.
 arrow Wayward Zionists
Israel, an outpost of the US in the Middle East is the fruit of the Balfour declaration of 1917. From the very beginning it was unyielding to international laws. It has grabbed the vast area of Palestine.
 arrow Education in a democracy
There are many divisions in the existing education system in Bangladesh.
 arrow What is wrong with Bangladesh?
As an expatriate, I read the online newspapers of Bangladesh such as The Daily Star to keep in touch with what's going on in the old country.
 arrow Drama within drama?
Two poor women, Noor Jahan and Hasina Banu, unveiled the fact that they did not faint due to starvation during Hasina's public visit to monga affected Nilphamari.
 arrow When will our politicians grow up?
This was my feeling when I read about the summing up (of our politicians) by the World Bank Resident Director, Dr Christine Wallich.
 arrow Fareed Zakaria's column
As if we did not have enough of the US-controlled media bombarding us round the clock from multiple press and TV channels, does The Daily Star now also have to become a mouthpiece for biased Americanviews?
 arrow Experts say Pakistan may have aided Iran
Tactically, Pakistan is trying to make its scientists scapegoats. By doing so it thinks it can escape the nuclear fiasco and blame it on the greed of "rogue" individuals.
 arrow DS report on PM's visit to DU
DS has grossly violated their neutrality in reporting once again and has shown clear and biased inclination to a particular political party in their report (Dec 23) on the PM's visit to Dhaka Univarsity
 arrow Alarming news
A news item published in The Daily Star (Dec 22) drew my attention. The news was about a private zoo of Mr Sitesh Babu of Srimongal, Moulavibazar, and the report was a very alarming one.
 arrow Politics with people's misery
Your article, "Politics with people's misery" (Dec 20) attracted my attention. It seems that the leader of the opposition has lied in public with the malefide intention of breeding hatred of the government.
 arrow The "alternative stream"
Dr B Chowdhury is at least trying to start a campaign which, if carried out properly, would be a big improvement in our political culture.
Environmentarrow Detrimental deforestation
Destruction of forest by clear-cutting is the clearing of forested areas as part of a commercial forestry enterprise or for other economic purposes.
 arrow Kenyan experience
When the Emirate's long haul flight from Dubai touched down the Jommo Kenyatta airport in Nairobi, an unmistakable air around me told me that I am in no where else but in the heart of Africa.
Worldarrow Musharraf to give up uniform by end of '04
Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf agreed Wednesday to step down as Chief of Army Staff by the end of 2004, resolving a row with an opposition Islamic alliance that had virtually paralysed parliament.
 arrow Pope pleads for peace
Pope John Paul II made an emotional plea for world peace yesterday as hundreds of millions celebrated Christmas under the long shadow of terrorist threats which have caused security alerts around theworld.
 arrow Clinton mediating on Kashmir, Pak president
Leaders of various Kashmiri groups in Pakistan have been told by President Pervez Musharraf that former US president Bill Clinton has been unofficially mediating between India and Pakistan to help them
 arrow Bomb blast damages UN compound near Afghan palace
A bomb blast destroyed the wall of a United Nations compound close to the presidential palace in Kabul early yesterday but there were no casualties, the Afghan security service and international peacekeepers
 arrow Europe's Mars lander fails to phone home
Europe's quest to seek signs of life on Mars was jarred yesterday after a miniaturised scientific lab failed to call Earth after its scheduled landing on the Red Planet.
 arrow Indian CEC Lyngdoh calls politicians a 'cancer'
The tough and plain-speaking Chief Election Commissioner JM Lyngdoh has once again attacked politicians calling them a "cancer" for which there was "no cure at the moment".
 arrow Islamabad summit may herald better Ino-Pak ties: Vajpayee
A seven-nation South Asian summit in Islamabad next month could result in a "good beginning" of closer ties between India and Pakistan, Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee said in an interviewpublished
 arrow First Japanese troops to leave today for Iraq
Japan said yesterday its first military contingent would leave Friday to prepare for a non-combat humanitarian mission in Iraq, as domestic protests continued against the mission.
 arrow Bush admn drawing up immigration plan
In what could be the biggest change in US immigration law in nearly two decades, the Bush administration is drawing up plans to help more immigrants find work legally in the United States, officials and
 arrow Mussa calls for Arab involvement in Iraq
Arab League chief Amr Mussa called on Arab nations to back efforts to rebuild war-torn Iraq after talking with members of the Governing Council, amid ongoing US efforts against anti-coalition insurgents
 arrow Iran vows to use missile if attacked by Israel
Iran's defence minister has said his country would strike back with its long-range Shahab-3 missile if Israel attacked its nuclear facilities.
 arrow Palestinians delay peace meeting over Israeli raid
Palestinian leaders, angered by an Israeli raid that killed nine people, on Wednesday postponed talks with Israel aimed at bringing about a Middle East peace summit.