Vol. 4 Num 300 Thu. April 01, 2004    
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Today's Index
Front Pagearrow Sit to fight violence together, shun hartal
Business leaders at a discussion with Leader of the Opposition Sheikh Hasina yesterday asked the government and opposition to fight violence together and shun hartal as a political tool.
 arrow Strike jolts Old Dhaka to halt
A half-day strike yesterday whisked Old Dhaka to a standstill, as businesspeople shut over one lakh shops in protest at a spate of killings of traders over the last few months, shrugging off political
 arrow Edn commission for radical reforms
The National Education Commission has asked the government to go for radical educational reforms including a single-discipline secondary education, raising teacher-student ratio and up-to-date pay structure
 arrow Collateral-free farm loan from Apr 14
Following the interest rate waiver on agriculture loans, the government yesterday asked nationalised commercial banks (NCBs), including Bangladesh Krishi Bank, to provide collateral -free loans to farmers
 arrow Same killers out to wipe out witnesses
Killers of Old Dhaka businessman Shamsul Haq and his son Russell Sheikh continue threatening their family on the phone as police and intelligence agencies have failed to hunt prime suspect Kajal and others
 arrow 5 US troops bombed
In one of the bloodiest days in weeks for the US military, five troops died when a bomb exploded under their military vehicle west of Baghdad yesterday.
 arrow Final survey team goes to Myanmar this week
A second group of engineers are going to Myanmar this week to finalise the survey for constructing a 55-km stretch of highway which will establish a direct road link between Dhaka and Yangon.
 arrow Sharmin shoots second gold
Shooting brought another gold for Bangladesh when Sharmin Akhter won the 10m air-rifle event in the Ninth SAF Games in Islamabad yesterday.
 arrow India in sight of history
Leg-spinner Anil Kumble returned to haunt Pakistan, taking India to the verge of their first Test victory on Pakistani soil on Wednesday.
 arrow Essentials prices remain high
After experiencing an unchanged price situation in the kitchen market for the last three weeks, city dwellers might again face a price hike, especially of vegetables, if the current drought-like situation
 arrow Tk 28,000cr audit objections remain unresolved
The Public Accounts Committee (Pac) yesterday asked the comptroller and auditor general (CAG) to resolve in the next six months thousands of pending audit objections to finances of different ministries
 arrow Magura businessman abducted, Ctg trader hacked to death
An unidentified armed gang abducted a leading businessman from his home in Magura town on Tuesday night in what appeared to be a ransom-motivated incident and unidentified criminals hacked to death afish
 arrow Declare Sangsad complex nat'l heritage
The Architects Regional Council of Asia (Arcasia) has urged the government to declare Bangladesh's Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban complex as part of national heritage.
 arrow Kamrangirchar Gram Sarkar head shot dead
Unknown gunmen killed a Gram Sarker head of Kamrangirchar on the outskirts of the city and injured a Union Parishad (UP) chairman and a local man last night.
 arrow Countdown to AL deadline begins
Countdown to the April 30 deadline for the fall of the government set by the main opposition Awami League (AL) begins today amid a frenzy of political manoeuvring.
 arrow Altaf sees prices down
Commerce Minister Altaf Hossain Choudhury yesterday at the first meeting after his takeover claimed that prices of all essentials went down except for sugar and ginger.
 arrow Security in Old Dhaka tightened
The government has scaled up security in violence-scarred Old Dhaka deploying uniformed and undercover policemen and heightening intelligence watch after a spate of businesspeople killings.
 arrow $1,368m ADB loan proposed for Dhaka
The country programming mission (CPM) of Asian Development Bank (ADB) has proposed a $1,368 million lending programme (2004-06) for Bangladesh.
 arrow We don't shelter terrorists
Foreign Minister M Morshed Khan has said Bangladesh will cooperate with all countries including India in fighting terrorism.
 arrow IGP and DMP commissioner get one-year fresh terms
The government has extended the terms of both Inspector General of Police (IGP) Shahudul Haque and Dhaka Metropolitan Police Commissioner Ashraful Huda for one more year.
 arrow US on change of power in Bangladesh
The United States does not favour any party in the political process of Bangladesh and believes Bangladeshis have the right to select their leaders within the political framework of the constitution,according
 arrow AL lawmaker charged with power abuse
The Bureau of Anti-corruption (Bac) yesterday pressed charges against former state minister for jute and Awami League lawmaker AKM Jahangir Hossain for allegedly forcing jute ministry officials to rent
 arrow 25-yr nat'l water plan approved
National Water Resource Council in its seventh meeting yesterday approved a 25-year national water management plan for protection and optimum use of the country's water resource.
 arrow CU students call off strike
Students under the banner of General Students Action Council (GSAC) yesterday called off their indefinite strike on Chittagong University (CU) campus.
 arrow Correction
The Daily Star report run on Wednesday headlined "Country set to enter mining era" should read, "The mine has 64 million tonnes of high quality coal, which in terms of thermal value is equivalent to 1.
Businessarrow Ad hoc measures fail to bridle price hike
The government failed to rein in the prices of essentials as it took temporary and ad hoc measures instead of long term ones, said Annual Report 2003 of the International Chamber of Commerce-Bangladesh
 arrow Drought may hit tea production
Tea production may fall this year due to the prevailing drought-like situation in greater Sylhet, the country's main tea producing zone.
 arrow Withdraw regulatory duty on CKD units
Bangladesh Television Manufa-cturers Association (BTMA) has urged the government to withdraw newly imposed regulatory duty on completely knocked down (CKD) units to keep the assemblers competitive inlocal
 arrow The poor hardly benefit from dev projects
A World Bank (WB) economist has criticised the government and donor agencies for not monitoring the donor-funded poverty reduction projects and urged both the parties to increase allocation for supervision
 arrow Caught in own trap
Full of high spirits, restaurant business of Britain's most popular Bangladeshi and Indian foods faces a big speed-breaker for the restaurateurs' use of excessive food colours to make the culinary dishes
 arrow World accounting body throws challenge to EU
The world's international accounting rule-maker threw down a challenge to the European Union Wednesday, adopting new book-keeping rules that critics say will play havoc with European profits.
 arrow Govt seeks WB help to merge revenue, dev budgets
The government yesterday sought technical and financial help of the World Bank (WB) to merge the revenue and development budgets into one.
 arrow Bank Asia board recommends 24pc bonus share
A board meeting of Bank Asia has recommended 24 percent bonus share-- 12 shares for every 50-share-- for the year 2003, says a press release.

The bank earned an operating profit of Tk 419.

 arrow WFP activities in Bangladesh to get AUD$1.123m from Australia
Australia will provide 1.123 million Australian dollars to Bangladesh in 2003-2004 to continue to fund World Food Programme's (WFP) supervising activities in the country.
 arrow Mintoo meets US envoy
FBCCI President Abdul Awal Mintoo yesterday had a meeting with US Ambassador Harry K Thomas.

Sources said the meeting at the US Embassy lasted for an hour from 11 in the morning.

 arrow Trust Bank cuts interest rates
The Trust Bank Limited (TBL) has recently cut interest rates on loans in various sectors by 3 to 3.5 percent.
 arrow Bengal Cosmetics introduces Adidas products
Bengal Cosmetics Ltd, an importer of fragrance and toiletries from the USA, France and Spain, has introduced Adidas toiletries and body care items in local market.
 arrow Opec leaning towards output cut despite US opposition
Opec ministers meeting in Vienna Wednesday looked set to maintain a cut in their daily oil production of one million barrels, despite US calls for a delay to help rein in high energy prices.
Sportsarrow Sensational Sharmin
Bangladesh made the 10m air-rifle event their own in the 9th SAF Games when Sharmin Akhter followed in the footsteps of compatriot Asif Hossain Khan to win the women's gold at the Shooting Range of Jinnah
 arrow Cricket: It's a strokeplayers' world
India's Viren-der Sehwag loves to slash short-pitched balls for six over point, which he calls his "lottery" deliveries.
 arrow Football: A Maldives miracle
The Maldives pulled off one of the most remarkable upsets in Asian football history here Wednes-day by holding mighty South Korea to a goalless draw in qualifiers for the 2006 World Cup.
 arrow Cricket: Test by 'Lord of the Rings’
Australian experts checking the validity of Muttiah Muralitharan's controversial "doosra" delivery will use state-of-the-art, Academy Award-winning technology to resolve cricket's most vexing question.
 arrow Cricket: England can do it now
England need to draw or win to seal their first Test series victory over West Indies in the Caribbean for 36 years in the third cricket Test, starting on Thursday at Kensington Oval.
 arrow Cricket: Speed calls for calm
International Cricket Council (ICC) chief executive Malcolm Speed warned against emotions overriding sense as the latest row regarding Muttiah Muralitharan's bowling action intensified.
 arrow Cricket: Gough never gave up
England's veteran fast bowler Darren Gough said he never gave up hope of winning his place back in the international one-day side.
 arrow Cricket: Pakistan protest Taufel decisions
Pakistan have registered an official protest with Ranjan Madugalle, the match referee, after two key umpiring decisions went against them on the third day of the first Test at Multan.
 arrow Football: Kyrgyzstan in Dhaka for AFC U-14 meet
Kyrgyzstan was the first team to arrive in Dhaka yesterday to take part in the Asian Football Confederations (AFC) Under-14 Festival of Football.
 arrow Hockey: Independence Day hockey
The Under-21 National Youth Hockey team registered a 5-1 goal victory over Bangladesh Navy in the Independence Day hockey tournament at the BKSP ground in Savar yesterday.
 arrow Handball: Sheetal h'ball
Mohammedan Sporting Club outplayed Usha Krira Chakra 23-7 in the Sheetal Women Handball League at the outer stadium handball court yesterday.

The Motijheel outfit dominated the first half 15-5.

 arrow Chess: Singer chess
Grand Masters Niaz Murshed and Ziaur Rahman jointly led the table with 3.
 arrow Basketball: Maple Leaf b'ball
Bangladesh Army handed Bangladesh Rifles a 93-65 defeat in the Maple Leaf Independence Day basketball competition at the Dhanmondi Basketball Gymna-sium yesterday.

The winners led the first half37-30.

 arrow Cricket: Satkhira cricket
Gano Mukhi Sangha and PK Union Club won their respective matches in the Satkhira District First Division Cricket League in last two days at the Satkhira Government College ground.
 arrow Moazzem & co lift nat'l bridge title
ATM Moazzem Hussain's team became champion in the FIZZ UP 23rd National Team Bridge Championship at Grand Azad Hotel, Dhaka recently.
 arrow Football: Crespo makes the difference
Striker Hernan Crespo struck on the hour to give Argentina a hard-fought 1-0 win over Ecuador in a World Cup qualifier on Tuesday.
 arrow Football: Hard days ahead
Brazil striker Ronaldo has said his team will have to be prepared to make sacrifices to keep intact their unique record of playing at every World Cup.
 arrow Football: Maldini will be welcomed
AC Milan defender Alessandro Nesta said Tuesday the Italian national team would warmly welcome the return of club team-mate Paolo Maldini to international football.
 arrow Football: Kahn targets WC 2010
Bayern Munich captain Oliver Kahn has no plans to retire and wants to continue as Germany goalkeeper until after the 2010 World Cup when he will be 40.
 arrow Football: Rome derby to be replayed
The Rome derby abandoned earlier this month due to fears for crowd safety after a riot broke out outside the stadium, will be replayed, the Italian sports judiciary said on Tuesday.
 arrow Football: Platini weary of future
Michel Platini is urging soccer to return to its core values, with young players nurtured locally to avoid the game losing its global popularity.
 arrow Football: Enough is enough!
Borussia Dortmund want to sever ties with Brazilian striker Marcio Amoroso after accusing him on Tuesday of showing a lack of respect for the 1997 European champions.
 arrow Football: Ranieri cloud cleared
Chelsea's Russian oil billionaire owner Roman Abramovich and chief executive Peter Kenyon have held clear-the-air talks with Claudio Ranieri over the managerial crisis at the English Premiership club.
Metropolitanarrow 'Seven in one lakh visually impaired'
As many as seven people in one lakh are visually impaired in the country.

Of them 80 percent are affected with cataract.

 arrow Theft of Tagore's Nobel medal protested
Teachers and students of Bangla department of Dhaka University staged a demonstration on the campus yesterday protesting the theft of Rabindranath Tagore's Nobel prize medal and his memorabilia.
Nationalarrow Rajshahi city protection dam made vulnerable
Despite a ban, sand traders have cut the Rajshahi town protection dam at more than a dozen points to facilitate trucks to carry sand from the Padma riverbed.
 arrow 'Make April 4 Gaibandha hartal a success'
Gaibandha district unit of the Workers and Employees Federation at a meeting in the town on Tuesday called upon the people to make the April 4 hartal programme in the district and the 'grand rally' in
 arrow REB men flee office seeing angry farmers
Hardly a day passes in the district with farmers' demonstration for smooth power supply for irrigation.
 arrow Hasina begins Patuakhali tour tomorrow
Awami League chief Sheikh Hasina arrives here tomorrow on a three-day tour of Patuakhali where hartal called by her party was not observed since BNP came to power.
 arrow Campaign hot on the heels of polls schedule
The polls are far away, but prospective candidates are on race to reach closer to voters.
 arrow Big haul of smuggled goods in Pirojpur
Police seized two trucks and one trawler with smuggled Indian goods worth over Tk 55 lakh in Tushkhali under Mathbaria upazila in Pirozpur district yesterday and arrested three persons.
 arrow Ex- Patuakhali Pourasabha chairman sued for fund scam
A former chairman and three other officials of Patuakhali Pourasabha were charge sheeted for 'misappropriation' of 3 lakh 62 thousand and 339 taka in name of a road repairing project.
 arrow BNP candidates for Patuakhali Pourasabha polls
The Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) on March 25 declared the names party candidates for contesting in the upcoming Patuakhali Pourashaba election.
 arrow Strike at Barisal medicine factory
Over 150 employees and workers of Medimate Pharmaceuticals stopped work yesterday demanding provident fund, gratuity and salary hike.
 arrow 5 Indians pushed back by BDR in Panchagarh
Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) Monday night pushed back five Indian nationals through Pachagarh border.

The five of a family were pushed in by BSF of Beriberi and Tiabari camps in the morning.

 arrow Khulna AL leader's business office bombed
Chabi Fish Processing Industries at Natun Bazar under Khulna thana owned by city Awami League leader Kazi Abul Kalam Azad alias Biku came under bomb attack Monday night.
 arrow 15 hurt during Rangpur hartal for edn board
At least 15 persons including two photo-journalists were injured in a clash during hartal hours here on Tuesday.
 arrow New CUJ executives
Mostaq Ahmed of Daily Inqilab and Shahidul Alam of Daily Rupali were re-elected president and general secretary of the Chittagong Union of Journalists (CUJ) for the next one year in an election held at
 arrow Nor'wester in Netrakona village
Ten persons were injured, three of them seriously, as a nor'wester lashed Batta Banagram village in Kendua upazila on Tuesday.

Forty kutcha houses were also damaged.

Point-Counterpointarrow Politics, number game and demands: What next?
Many things characterise the state of politics in Bangladesh. Of these, all or most of the debates and discussions appear to have been made on lack of good governance.
 arrow It's not right to conclude that the country with the lowest CPI score is the most corrupt
Peter Eigen is the chairman and founder of Transparency International. He holds teaching positions at Harvard University's John F.
 arrow AL's ultimatum and Hobson's choice
Mr. Jalil, AL-GS, has created quite a stir by recent repeated audacious assertion that the BNP regime would fall by April 30, 2004.
Culturearrow Building bridges
Through flamboyant presentation of songs and dances by performers of Bangladesh and Bhutan, the 2nd South Asian Association Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Cultural Festival kicked off at the Osmani Memorial
 arrow Bangla pop is here again
Mehreen knows the meaning of success. Ever since her Bangla pop hit Anari was screened on Channel-i in 1999, her career graph has pointed upwards.
 arrow One plus One
Enamul Karim Nirjhar came to Dhaka to become a poet. Later he became hooked to the idea of seeing himself as an artist. However, he neither studied literature, nor fine arts. Instead he studied architecture.
 arrow Bangladesh Design Council formed to provide access to niche markets
The top designers of Bangladesh have joined hands to promote the Bangladesh Design Council.
Generalarrow Proposal on 2nd Padma bridge awaits Ecnec nod
Communications Minister Nazmul Huda yesterday said the project proposal for construction of a multipurpose bridge with rail, gas and electricity facilities on the river Padma had already been sent tothe
 arrow SC extends stay for another 6 months
The Supreme Court yesterday extended the stay for another six months the March 8 High Court order that had directed the Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) to remove extra bumpers from motor vehicles.
 arrow Police, criminals exchange fire at Gulshan, one held
Police exchanged gunshots with a gang of criminals travelling in a microbus at Gulshan in the city on Tuesday night, injuring the driver.
 arrow Punishment to culprits demanded
Different student organisations yesterday demanded immediate arrest and punishment to policemen and Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) activists responsible for the attack on general students of Chittagong
 arrow One to die in Mehedi murder case
One person was sentenced to death in the sensational BNP leader advocate Mehedi murder case here yesterday.

The Speedy Trial Tribunal of Barisal handed down the death penalty to Kamal Sardar, 38.

 arrow SC asks govt to file regular leave to appeal by Saturday
The Supreme Court yesterday asked the government to file a regular leave to appeal by Saturday against the High Court order that had granted bail to Nurul Islam Babul, a business tycoon, in a murder case.
 arrow Orbis president arrives today
President and Executive Director of Orbis International Kathy Spahn arrives in Dhaka today on a three-day visit to Bangladesh, says a press release.
 arrow Care important dev partner of Bangladesh: Bhuiyan
Peter D Bell, President of the US-based international agency Care, called on LGRD and Cooperatives Minister Abdul Mannan Bhuiyan at his secretariat office here yesterday.
 arrow Trader's body identified 43 days after his murder
The body of a cell phone trader was finally identified yesterday 43 days after his abduction and murder.
 arrow Millennium hospital opens kidney dialysis unit
A private hospital on Tuesday inaugurated a modern kidney dialysis unit with intensive care unit attached to it.
 arrow Dr Nurunnahar passes away
Professor Dr Nurunnahar Fyzunnessa, former teacher of the Institute of Education and Research of Dhaka Univrsity, passed away yesterday at the age of 72, says a press release.

Family members of Dr.

 arrow Classical music evening on Apr 3
An evening of Hindustani classical vocal music by Malashri Prasad and fusion music by Johar Ali Khan and his group will now be held on April 3 instead of today, says a press release.
Internationalarrow White House U-turn on 9/11 probe
The White House reversed course under mounting pressure and allowed Condoleezza Rice, President George W.
 arrow Israeli soldiers remove West Bank outpost
Israeli soldiers dismantled a Jewish outpost near the West Bank city of Hebron yesterday, the first of a handful slated for removal ahead of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's visit to Washington.
 arrow Drugs "undermining our existence": Karzai
Afghan President Hamid Karzai yesterday warned that rampant drugs production was undermining the existence of his fragile state and urged the international community to help tackle the scourge.
 arrow UK police probe 'bomb plot'
Anti-terrorism officers are continuing to question eight men as they investigate an alleged bomb plot.
 arrow UNSC ready to approve oil, food probe in Iraq
Security Council members, except Russia, were ready to welcome a United Nations investigation into allegations of corruption in the now defunct Iraq oil-for-food program, diplomats said.
 arrow Man blows himself up in Bolivia Congress
An angry miner with dynamite strapped to his chest blew himself up in Bolivia's congress Tuesday, killing two police officers and wounding 10 others, authorities said.
 arrow Statue of Liberty to reopen
The Statue of Liberty, America's "icon of freedom," is expected to reopen to visitors this summer for the first time since the Sept.
Editorialarrow Editorial: Human development a touch better
The country's human development standing has improved slightly as it has been ranked fifth among the seven South Asian countries in a report released by a Pakistan-based regional research organisation.
 arrow Editorial: Bangladesh enters mining era
The development of a new industry with the potential to employ thousands of people, increase our energy self-sufficiency, and reduce the country's dependence on imports is always to be applauded.
 arrow Riding a roller-coaster of crises
We can hardly be optimistic about the solution of our energy problem for many reasons.
 arrow Congress must re-focus campaign:BJP on the defensive
The BJP claims it has raised India's global stature to wholly unprecedented heights. This is its greatest foreign policy achievement.
Letters to Editorarrow Talking about crime
I think we, the citizens of this country, do not have any other choice than surrendering to fate.
 arrow A gruesome murder
As we scan through the newspaper front-pages every morning, we invariably come across some common episodes -- murder, violence, corruption, injustice etc.
 arrow The cardinal sin!
I was talking with some people in a meeting in Toronto. As usual, in a meeting of Bangladeshis everyone was talking about the current politics and violence in Bangladesh.
 arrow Definition of "success"
The former home minister has said that he'll be "equally successful" in his new job (as the commerce minister).

Well, we have practically seen the "real face" of his "success" with his previous ministry.