Volume 4 Number 248 Fri. February 06, 2004    
 
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Front Pagearrow 12 drown in Meghna launch collision
Two launches carrying hundreds of passengers collided in the Meghna river in Barisal early yesterday, killing at least 12 people, with more feared trapped or dead, police said.
 arrow BIMST-EC meets to sign draft FTA tomorrow
Bangladesh's demand for special treatment as a least developed country in a proposed free trade area in BIMST-EC is the only issue to be resolved at the two-day ministerial meeting of the regional grouping
 arrow Corruption, bitter political rivalry threaten democracy
Bitter rivalries between two leading political parties and one of the highest corruption rates in the world threaten to undermine democratic stability of Bangladesh and impede its economic growth, said
 arrow Ekushey book fair begins tomorrow
Amar Ekushey Book Fair begins tomorrow on the Bangla Academy premises in the city as part of the month-long programmes for observance of the Language Martyrs Day.
 arrow AL for stiff agitation at end of ultimatum
Main opposition Awami League (AL) is set to move for an agitation to bring down the government on expiry of its one-month ultimatum on February 10 for meeting its 15-point demand.
 arrow Showcause on 14 Petrobangla, Titas officials
Petrobangla and its affiliate Titas Gas Transmission and Distribution Company Ltd.
 arrow German court clears Sept 11 suspect
A German court yesterday cleared a Moroccan student of accessory to murder in the September 11 attacks in the United States, in only the second trial worldwide of the 2001 suicide hijackings.
 arrow PM asks AL to talk demands in parliament
Prime Minister Khaleda Zia yesterday urged the main opposition Awami League (AL) to join the Jatiya Sangsad (JS) and talk about their demands and other issues in the House.
 arrow No clue yet to businessman
Four days into the abduction of Hasan Mahbub Bablu, law-enforcing agencies could make no headway in discovering any whereabouts of him.
 arrow Six bodies retrieved in Patuakhali
Six passengers travelling in a trawler were found dead on Buragouranga river under Dashmina upazila Tuesday night. They are believed to be killed by pirates.
 arrow City clothes shop robbed
Robbers looted valuables said to be worth Tk 5 lakh from a clothes store on Bangabandhu Avenue in Dhaka Wednesday night.
 arrow BNPPP's adjourned meet uncertain
BNP lawmakers are looking up to the prime minister as to know whether the adjourned meeting of the BNP Parliamentary Party (BNPPP) would be resumed.
 arrow Call for Blair quit
British Prime Minister Tony Blair should resign because he failed to ask "basic questions" on claims made in his Iraq dossier, Tory leader Michael Howard said yesterday.
 arrow Pakistan pardons nuke spearhead
Pakistan's president has pardoned its top nuclear scientist who admitted leaking nuclear arms secrets to Iran, Libya and North Korea and says he will not allow international supervision of Pakistan'satomic
 arrow 10 guards held, two escape capture
A police hunt for two guards with suspected close links to one of the capital's biggest heists proved futile, as they went underground after robbers pillaged two jewellery shops at the upmarket Karnaphuli
 arrow Middlemen push Eid hide prices low
Prices of raw hide in the wholesale markets were lower after the Eid-ul-Azha this year compared to the prices last year, market sources said attributing this to mainly the manipulations by a section of
 arrow Pangsha OC killer 'identified'
The killers of Mizanur Rahman, OC, Pangsha Police Station of Rajbari, have reportedly been identified. Police let off all 31 people picked up for questioning for their suspected links.
 arrow Outlaw admits killing Manik
Nuruzzaman Sumon, arrested in connection with the killing of Khulna journalist Manik Chandra Saha, yesterday confessed to his link to the murder.
 arrow CIA chief plans to correct WMD 'misperceptions'
CIA Director George Tenet plans to try and correct what he considers "misperceptions" about prewar intelligence on Iraq's weapons of mass destruction in his first public appearance since fresh controversy
 arrow Garments owner's car hijacked in Laksam
Miscreants hijacked a garment owner's private car leaving him injured on Laksam bypass Tuesday night.

Shafiqul Islam, chairman of M/s Alliance Garments Ltd.

 arrow Son shot as father refuses to pay toll in Ctg
A gang shot and injured a youth at West Supariwalapara in the port city on Wednesday allegedly because his businessman father refused to pay them toll.
 arrow AL now to enforce half-day hartal in Khulna
The Awami League (AL) has shortened the dawn-to-dusk hartal to a half-day one in Khulna tomorrow.
 arrow 2 die in road accidents
A rickshawpuller and a teenage boy were killed in separate road accidents at Kalyanpur in the city and Dhamrai in Savar yesterday.
 arrow One killed by mother, brothers
A mother and two of her sons slaughtered her another son at Bhuisora in Fatulla here yesterday.
 arrow Body recovered in Shyampur
Body of a man of about 35 was recovered from a sewer in Shyampur yesterday.

Shyampur police on information from an unknown caller found the stripped body at Rajab Ali Sarder Road in Dhania at 7:30am.

 arrow Another mild cold wave after Feb 12 likely
After a mild cold wave from the night of February 2, weather is expected to start warming slowly from last night.
 arrow US soldier killed in Baghdad Airport attack
One US soldier was killed and another wounded in a mortar attack on US military installations near Baghdad airport yesterday, a US Army spokesman said.
Businessarrow ICB account holders to get interest waiver
The Investment Corporation of Bangladesh (ICB) has decided to rehabilitate its investment account holders who incurred huge capital loss during the 1996 stock market crisis.
 arrow Global recovery robust, but jobs lagging
The huge US services sector surged to its best level in seven years in January and the European economic recovery is firmly underway, but jobs remain elusive for the millions out of work, surveys showed
 arrow Global free trade talks stir after hibernation
Global free trade talks are starting to stir after months of hibernation and envoys and analysts are quietly hopeful it will not prove a false spring.
 arrow China, India set to hit UN poverty reduction targets
Asian giants China and India are on track to meet UN poverty reduction targets, but other nations in the region are being left behind, a UN official warned here Thursday.
 arrow Bird flu to have least effect on Asian economies: UN
Avian flu is unlikely to have a major effect on the economies of Asia, unlike the outbreak of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (Sars) last year, a UN official said Thursday.
 arrow Internet telephony set to slash call costs between India, US
The cost of telephone calls between India and the United States is set to plunge in the near future with the large-scale emergence of low-cost Internet telephony, a US official said Thursday.
 arrow $20m S Korean loan for rural electrification
South Korea will provide $ 20 million as loan to Bangladesh for the implementation of a project of the Rural Electrification Board (REB).
 arrow Rancon Motors wins best sales award
Rancon Motors Limited, general distributor of DaimlerChrysler in Bangladesh, has won the 'Best Sales Performance Award 2003' for its outstanding performance.
 arrow Citibank area head due today
Citibank Area Head for South Asia Sanjay Nayar is due in Dhaka today on a two-day visit to Bangladesh.

He is also the chief executive officer of Citibank, India.

 arrow G7 policymakers to tackle disputed currency policies
Top financial policymakers from the world's seven richest nations will meet this weekend in Florida only to confirm US, Japanese and European priorities on foreign exchange remain divided, analysts said.
Sportsarrow Football: It's BU's for the taking
Fresh from a five-day Eid break, leaders Brothers Union will be hoping that they are not caught in Qurbani hangover against a sorry Badda Jagarani in one of the two return leg matches of the Western Union
 arrow Cricket: Nafees torments Nepal
Opener Nafees Iqbal continued to toy with Nepal's bowlers when the Bangladesh under-19 cricket team coasted to an eight-wicket win in their second practice match at the Dhanmondi Cricket Stadium yesterday.
 arrow Cricket: Aus hold mental edge
Australian captain Ricky Ponting is hoping speedster Brett Lee has left his Indian rivals mentally scarred as the two nations gear up for the first of the triangular VB Series one-day finals here on Friday.
 arrow Cricket: Indians divided within?
Fresh concerns have emerged about the willingness of a few members of the Indian cricket team to visit Pakistan when the scheduled tour begins next month.
 arrow Cricket: ICC idea gains support
Rival skippers Ricky Ponting and Saurav Ganguly on Thursday gave cautious approval to a proposed world-best cricket tournament.
 arrow Cricket: Kallis again
Jacques Kallis slammed his sixth recent century against the West Indies as South Africa won a high-scoring fifth and final one-day international at the Wanderers Stadium Wednesday.
 arrow Cricket: Aussie duo knock on door
Australia could soon have the services of its two best bowlers once again, with both Shane Warne and Glenn McGrath champing at the bit to return to international cricket.
 arrow Cricket: Zim A come on Mar 10
The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) yesterday released the itinerary of the Zimbabwe A team's tour of Bangladesh, which starts in the first week of March.
 arrow Football: U-17 booters thrashed
The Bangladesh Under-17 team suffered a crushing 5-0 defeat against hosts Thailand in the BIMST-EC Youth Football Tourna-ment in the Thai city of Phuket yesterday.
 arrow Snooker: U-21, nat'l snooker starts February 8
The ninth National (Under-21) Snooker Championship and 20th National Snooker Championship begin at the Dhaka Club Billiards room from February 8.
 arrow Boxing: Lewis set to retire
Lennox Lewis is expected to finally end the speculation over his future plans by announcing his retirement from boxing at a London press conference on Friday morning.
 arrow Tennis: Hewitt eyes Davis Cup mark
Lleyton Hewitt is on the verge of breaking one of his country's proudest sporting records when Australia begin their defence of the Davis Cup against Sweden in Adelaide on Friday.
 arrow Tennis: Agassi sees life after tennis
Andre Agassi is interested in helping to run tennis after he retires providing the role gives him real power.
 arrow Football: South Africa ousted
Nigeria recalled three expelled players after reaching the African Nations Cup quarter-finals on Wednesday while South Africa fell at the first hurdle for the first time after drawing 1-1 with Morocco.
 arrow Football: Miracles still happen
Manchester City pulled off one of the greatest FA Cup comebacks in the history of the competition to defeat Tottenham 4-3 at White Hart Lane and earn a fifth round clash with Manchester United.
 arrow Football: Achen's greatest moment
Cup holders Bayern Munich crashed to a humiliating 2-1 defeat at the hands of second division Alemannia Aachen on Wednesday.
 arrow Football: Fergies feel the Irish force
Lawyers acting for Irish tycoons John Magnier and JP McManus have intensified their feud with Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson by demanding transcripts of his pre-match press conferences.
Metropolitanarrow 30 houses gutted in Chittagong
Some 30 houses were gutted and properties worth around Tk 32 lakhs damaged in two separate incidents of fire here on Wednesday and yesterday.
 arrow DCC, Jica preparing master plan for waste management
The master plan for proper management of increasing volume of solid wastes in the city is nearing completion, said DCC Chief Conservancy Officer Sohel Faruque.
 arrow Bimstec ministerial meet begins Feb 7
The sixth session of the ministerial meeting of Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand-Economic Cooperation (Bimstec) begins in Thai sea resort of Phuket tomorrow, official sources said yesterday.
 arrow Large amount of carbon dioxide at Mutwail dumping site
A Dutch team has recently discovered a large amount of carbon dioxide at Mutwail dumping site in the city, which can be used to produce enough methane gas to run a 'small power plant'.
 arrow First return Hajj flight arrives today
The first return Hajj flight of Bangladesh Biman arrives in Dhaka at 5:20pm today carrying the pilgrims from Jeddah.
 arrow Hoodlums open fire in hotel: 2 injured
Two employees of a hotel at Banglamotor were wounded when a gang of hoodlums opened fire in the hotel last night.
 arrow Khaleda opens Kachua water resource project
Prime Minister Khaleda Zia inaugurated the second Small Scale Water Resource (SSWR) project of the Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) here yesterday.
 arrow Injunction on Ctg Bar Association polls
A court here yesterday issued injunction on the Chittagong District Bar Association election scheduled for February 10 and fixed February 7 for hearing of a case challenging the polls.
 arrow AL concerned over law and order slide
Awami League (AL) acting general secretary Obaidul Kader yesterday expressed deep concern at the slide of law and order during the Eid holidays.
 arrow Rickshaw garage owner beaten to death
A rickshaw garage owner was beaten to death by a thief at Kala Meah Bazar of Bakalia in the port city on the midnight of Wednesday.

The victim was identified as Rezaul Karim, 27.

 arrow Attempt to attack newsman condemned
Ain O Salish Kendro (ASK) yesterday condemned an attempt to attack Probir Shikdar, a staff reporter of the Janakantha, says a press release.
 arrow 30 wounded in gunfight over salt field
At least 30 people were injured in a two-hour gunfight over the possession of a salt field in Moheshkhali offshore island yesterday.
 arrow Faizuddin Ahmed passes away
Faizuddin Ahmed, former chairman of Public Service Commission, died of old-age complications at Birdem Hospital in the city yesterday at the age of 83.
Point-Counterpointarrow Farewell to the NGOs: Their days in Bangladesh are over?
The title of the article may startle the readers. What has happened to make such a dire prediction? Actually something very serious has happened.
 arrow Combating the BJP ideologically: Congress needs a clear identity
The World Social Forum held in Mumbai (Jan 16-21) will go down as a landmark in the great and growing civil society mobilisations for global justice and peace.
 arrow On General Niazi's departure
On February 2, 2004, Lt. General A. A. K. Niazi one of the masterminds of Bangladesh Genocide had died in Lahore, Pakistan of diabetic complications.

To wash off his sin, Gen.

Culturearrow Lyricising humanity
I am no singer. I am just an individual from the crowd.
 arrow Eid entertainment on television
With very little diversion in Dhaka City, television has become the prime source of Eid entertainment for everyone.
 arrow Clever detective to tough granny
Angela Lansbury read the script three times while puzzling whether to accept the part of 84-year-old, tough-as-nails Granny in "The Blackwater Lightship.
Generalarrow Sreepur Village founding anniversary tomorrow
The 15th founding anniversary of Sreepur Village will be celebrated tomorrow.

The 10-acre village is situated at 40 miles north of Dhaka.

 arrow 4 arrested with 888 bottles of phensidyl
Four alleged drug traders were arrested along with 888 bottles of Indian phensidyl syrup from a bus at Chandaikona Bazar on Dhaka-Bogra highway in Raiganj thana early Wednesday.
 arrow Robbers loot cash, valuables from bus passengers
Armed robbers looted cash and other valuables worth Tk 40 lakhs from the passengers of a night coach on Dhaka-Kalapara route on Wednesday morning.
 arrow Two killed in N'ganj road accidents
Two people were killed and five others injured in separate road accidents on Dhaka-Chittagong Highway in Bandar thana on Wednesday.
 arrow 897 more held
Police arrested a total of 897 people during their ongoing countrywide drive in last 24 hours till 6.00am yesterday.
Editorialarrow Editorial: Terrorisation at a hillside resort
For sometime past, Bandarban has been in the news for wrong, even sinister reasons. Sophisticated arms and ammunition were discovered from hideouts and there have been reports of abduction.
 arrow Editorial: Tragedy at Makkah
We express our deepest condolences to the families and friends, not only of the Bangladeshi pilgrims, but also those from other Asian nations who lost their lives in a stampede in Makkah.
 arrow Are the Americans well informed?
Some weeks ago Mrs. Christine Wallich, Director of the World Bank, Dhaka Office reportedly said that 75 per cent of the US Congressmen do not have passports.
 arrow Michael Jackson and Peter Pan
Last time I wrote about Michael Jackson, it was in a campus newspaper in the U.S. in 1994. Michael was accused of fondling a little boy for the first time and I defended him for a simple reason.
 arrow Sri Lanka: Is the peace process suffering big setbacks?
Fears continue to mount whether the truce between the government and the Tamil Tigers is increasingly becoming uncertain due to the stand off within the Lankan government and the impression being given
Letters to Editorarrow Why?
On the occasion of the Muslim religious festival, Eid ul Azha, almost every institution of the country remains closed for three days. During this period no newspaper is published.
 arrow Lord Hutton's Report
Like most Britons, many people around the world were also looking forward with keen interest to see the result of good old British justice and the Hutton Report must have been a great disappointment for
 arrow Blair and Bush: Nobel nominees?
I know it has only been a month since the year 2004 began.
 arrow BC's interview with BBC
Former president BC's press interview with BBC, aired on February 3 in BBC Asia Today, attracted my attention. As always, he was very articulate.
 arrow Teaching: Dhaka University style
We all know that education is the backbone of a nation.We have a long history of evaluating the learned. But regrettably, this is not true anymore.
 arrow Hasina criticises the press
I have read with keen interest a lead news report published in the DS (Jan 29).
 arrow Shopping centres of Dhaka
Please refer to Dr Mahbubur Rahman's post mortem (Jan 26) of an article on above mentioned title in the 'Urban Agenda' pages (Feb 1).
 arrow Padma Bridge: Site selection
JICA have finally chosen two important points for the construction of the country's longest bridge. One is at Mawa-Jinjira and the other at Paturia-Golando point.
 arrow Get Aktel, get "network busy"
"Get Aktel, get mobile" is the promise that Aktel, the supposedly second largest mobile phone provider makes in their add; but to me it is more like "Get Aktel, get 'network busy' message.
 arrow Ahmadiyya Muslims in Bangladesh
First of all I would like to thank you and your team for giving us excellent coverage of Ahmadiyya Muslims in Bangladesh and the recent atrocities.
 arrow Qusetions
I got some of the questions regarding current affairs of Bangladesh. As I live abroad I am worried about the following issues. I don't know when Allah will relieve us from these evils.
 arrow Life
Imagine your sister, or wife, or a friend or any person (female) you know has woken up early morning looking forward to another day in her life.
Environmentarrow Tangua Haor: A unique wetland ecosystem
February 2 was World Wetlands Day. It marks the date of signing of the Convention on Wetlands on 2 February 1971, in the Iranian city of Ramsar on the shores of the Caspian Sea.
Worldarrow 4 Indian troops killed in Kashmir attack
Four Indian soldiers were killed and seven injured by a landmine in Kashmir Thursday in the first major attack by Islamic rebels since separatists held breakthrough talks with the Indian government last
 arrow Nuke leak may cost Pakistan billions
The three billion dollar US economic and military package promised by President George W Bush in June 2003 to President Pervez Musharraf may be in jeopardy because of Wednesday's disclosures by Dr A Q
 arrow Blair 'unaware' of WMD threat
British Prime Minister Tony Blair admitted in a heated parliamentary debate that experts had not found the banned arms he used to justify war on Iraq, but US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld insisted
 arrow Sharon faces police interrogation
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was questioned by police Thursday in a bribery case that could force his resignation, and critics charged his talk of removing Israeli settlements in the Gaza Strip was meant
 arrow Malaysian PM's son in nuclear row
The probe could be embarrassing for Malaysia's Prime Minister

A firm controlled by the son of Malaysia's prime minister is being investigated for allegedly supplying Libya's nuclear weapons programme.

 arrow Combat aircraft, new missiles Indian priorities: Fernandes
Indian Defence Minister George Fernandes has listed an effective air defence system as his highest priority and says New Delhi is seeking permission from ally Russia to deal directly with manufacturers,
 arrow Cargo plane crash shuts Lanka airport for hours
Sri Lanka's only international airport reopened Thursday after being closed for nearly 10 hours following the crash-landing of a cargo plane that damaged runway lights, an airport official said.
 arrow 3 Tibetan monks imprisoned for 12 years
China has sentenced three Tibetan monks to 12 years in prison for painting a Tibetan flag and possessing photographs of the exiled spiritual leader Dalai Lama, rights groups said on Thursday.
 arrow Militants claim credit for Arbil bombings
An Iraqi militant group claimed responsibility for the suicide bombings in Arbil, and a senior US commander blamed recent attacks on insurgents seeking to sabotage a future independent Iraqi government.
 arrow 'NATO may take over division in Iraq'
NATO could take over command of a Polish-led division of the multi-national troops in Iraq later this year, a senior NATO official said Thursday.
 arrow Rumsfeld criticised for omitting Iraq costs
Democrats criticised US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld for omitting the cost of US military operations in Iraq from his proposed 401.7 billion dollar 2005 defence budget.
 arrow Baghdad museum too scared to reopen
Nearly a year later, experts at Iraq's National Museum still remember the horror when looters plundered thousands of treasures as they struggle to rebuild a world class collection.
 arrow Europe joins race to put man on Mars
A European could step out onto the surface of Mars within three decades, under European Space Agency (ESA) plans spelled out on Tuesday.
 arrow Smog-gobbling paint cleans city air
European scientists have devised a paint that soaks up nitrogen oxide gases emitted by vehicle exhausts, a pollution source that can cause smog and respiratory problems.
 arrow Cloning doctor says first attempt fails
A Kentucky fertility expert who announced last month that he had transferred a cloned human embryo into a woman said on Wednesday the pregnancy had failed, but promised to make more attempts.
 arrow Twins born from 12-yr-old frozen embryos
An Israeli woman has given birth to healthy twins from embryos fertilised 12 years earlier, in what doctors said Wednesday was the first successful implantation of embryos frozen for so long.
 
   
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