Volume 5 Number 16 Fri. June 11, 2004    
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Today's Index
Front Pagearrow Electoral pull dictates budgeting
Finance Minister Saifur Rahman found the pull of his constituency stronger than anything and proposed a string of safety net programmes in the next budget to appease the voters.
 arrow Farm subsidy doubles, but below expectation
It appeared to be a cause for rejoicing of the farming community as Finance and Planning Minister M Saifur Rahman yesterday proposed to double the farm subsidy from existing Tk 300 crore to Tk 600 crore.
 arrow Budget ambitious, unrealistic
Former finance minister SAMS Kibria yesterday dismissed the proposed budget for 2004-05 fiscal year as 'highly ambitious' and 'unrealistic' and said it has been tailored to deceive people.
 arrow Vat net widened, suppl duty raised
The proposed budget has stressed increased revenue earning through expansion of the value added tax (Vat) network.

Supplementary duty on a wide range of products has been increased.

 arrow Income tax ceiling upped, stringent anti-evasion planned
Aiming to increase tax base and simplify payment procedure, Finance Minister M Saifur Rahman yesterday suggested a number of income tax measures, which include introduction of Tax Ombudsman, formation
 arrow Saifur targets 6pc GDP growth in FY05, 7pc by FY08
The government is set to start implementing a medium-term macro-economic framework which is seen to boost the annual growth rate of gross domestic product (GDP) from 5.
 arrow New pay scale from January
The government will implement a new pay scale for its employees and officers from January next year, according to a budget proposal Finance and Planning Minister M Saifur Rahman placed in parliament yesterday.
 arrow Tax breaks for textiles
The finance minister yesterday suggested a number of measures in the proposed budget for 2004-2005 to help the textiles sector survive in the quota-free era by setting up a strong backward linkage industry.
 arrow Building collapse toll rises to 18
The death count from Wednesday's six-storey building collapse at Shankhari Bazar in Old Dhaka rose to 18 after rescuers pulled seven more bodies from the rubble amid scenes of tear and desperation yesterday.
 arrow Duty up
Prices of motor cars and jeeps are set to leap as Finance Minister Saifur Rahman has proposed to raise supplementary duty on those significantly.
 arrow Duty down
The proposed budget for fiscal 2004-2005 came as a boost for the telecoms sector, as the government reduced duty on a cellphone set to Tk 1,500 irrespective of prices, from Tk 3,000 and Tk 4,000 depending
 arrow Safety net cast wide for ultra poor
The proposed national budget for 2004-2005 fiscal year has increased the amount of various allowances in the social security sectors aiming to alleviate poverty of the extreme rural poor.
 arrow Rajuk allowed new structure on old one
Corrupt officials of Dhaka City Corporation (DCC) and Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha (Rajuk) are responsible for the collapse of the old building at Shankhari Bazar.
 arrow Graft, poor order to rock dev badly
"However sound the economic fundamentals are," failure to improve law and order, curb corruption and establish good governance will seriously affect the drive to achieve a pro-poor economic growth, the
 arrow Business leaders' mixed reaction to budget
Business leaders yesterday expressed mixed reactions at the proposed budget for 2004-05 fiscal year that aims to mobilise internal resources and warned that political instability could put brakes on its
 arrow 5 to die for killing Rakshit in Ctg
The Divisional Speedy Trial Tribunal, Chittagong, yesterday sentenced five people to death and seven others to three years imprisonment in the sensational Srinkanta Rakshit murder case.
 arrow 10 dead in attack on Pak army convoy
A Pakistani army commander narrowly escaped assassination yesterday when a gun and bomb attack on his convoy killed 10 people, in what officials saw as a response to a bloody assault on militants near
 arrow Health gets boost
Finance Minister M Saifur Rahman yesterday proposed withdrawing customs duty on medical and hospital equipment and accessories to pave the way for setting up hospitals of international standard.
 arrow Education outlay down, still highest
Budgetary allocation for education has dropped to 13.4 percent in terms of sector-wise allocation in the proposed budget for the fiscal 2004-05, down from 14 percent of the outgoing budget.
 arrow Focus on basic infrastructure
Finance Minister M Saifur Rahman yesterday proposed allocation of Tk 10,182 crore for basic infrastructure in the budget of fiscal year (FY) 2004-2005.
 arrow Scholarship goes double
The proposed budget brings more scholarship opportunities for meritorious students.
 arrow Tk 50 crore set aside as shock fund for staff
The government proposed contingency funds worth Tk 50 crore in the new budget to help workers and employees deal with sudden economic shocks stemmed from internal or external circumstances.
 arrow Govt makes major reshuffle in administration
The government yesterday reshuffled the top level of civil administration.

According to official sources, Housing and Public Works Secretary Aminur Rahman has been transferred to commerce ministry.

 arrow Kushtia liquor death count rises to 10
With the death of six more people including a woman yesterday, the death count from bootleg liquor binge in Kushtia on Tuesday rose to 10, hospital sources said.
 arrow 10 hurt as cop, criminal clash in Kushtia
A gunfight between police and a criminal group yesterday left 10 people including an officer-in-charge (OC) and two sub-inspectors (SI) injured in Kushtia.
Businessarrow Japan Trade Show draws Tk 6.32cr contracts
The first-ever Japan Trade Show ended yesterday in Dhaka with a huge customer response and festi-vity as local businesspeople struck

Tk 6.

 arrow Six given current charge as tax commissioners
Six additional tax commissioners of BCS (Taxation) Cadre have been assigned to serve as tax commissioners (current charge) in some vacant positions.
 arrow ONE Bank AGM held
The 5th annual general meeting (AGM) of ONE Bank Limited was held on Monday at a local hotel.

Sayeed Hossain Chowdhury, chairman of the bank, presided over the meeting, says a press release.

Sportsarrow Cricket: Keeping for future
Wicketkeeping nowadays is no longer just standing behind the stumps and waiting to take anything that beats the batsman or play the role of a cheerleader.
 arrow Football: Made for each other
France and England renew their old rivalry on Sunday at Euro 2004, with national pride at stake as well as their countries' soccer fortunes.

"This is more than just an ordinary match.

 arrow Cricket: Fleming leads from front
New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming's unbeaten 107 guided his side to the strong position of 196 for one at tea on the first day of the third Test against England at Trent Bridge here Thursday.
 arrow Cricket: Taylor cautions ICC
Former Australian Test off-spinner Peter Taylor has warned the world cricket body to rebuff a Sri Lankan appeal for rule changes allowing Muttiah Muralitharan to bowl his outlawed 'doosra' delivery.
 arrow Cricket: Lara eager to keep job
Brian Lara has on Wednesday confirmed he wants to keep the West Indies captaincy for the tour to England.
 arrow Cricket: 'All's not lost yet'
New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming said here Wednesday the tourists still had plenty to play for despite going into Thursday's final Test against England at Trent Bridge 2-0 down in the three-match series.
 arrow Cricket: Dravid refutes criticism
Indian cricket star Rahul Dravid has responded to criticism questioning the inclusion of cricketers in the Olympic torch relay, saying that cricket should not be blamed for its popularity.
 arrow Football: NFL to have new format
The Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) will introduce a new format for the final phase of the fourth National Football League (NFL).
 arrow Chess: Rating Chess'five leaders
Five players were sharing the lead in the Open FIDE Rating Chess tournament with maximum four points on completion of the fourth round at the Chess Federation hall room yesterday.
 arrow Kabadi: Div II kabadi
Sat Rowza Nabeen Sangha and Shaheed Muzaffar Hossain Smriti Sangsad got off to solid starts in the Second Division Kabadi League yesterday.
 arrow Football: Henry being English!
France striker Thierry Henry says England are strong enough to win Euro 2004 as both teams prepared to face each other in Lisbon on Sunday.
 arrow Football: A watertight defence
There are more than 1,001 reasons why France are favourites to win Euro 2004, 1,032 to be precise.
 arrow Football: Sweden's Italian job
Sweden's Fredrik Ljungberg believes his side have the ability and motivation to spring a surprise in Euro 2004 Group C.
 arrow Football: Jordan slay Iran
Two-time finalists Iran suffered a major setback to their hopes of making the 2006 World Cup finals on Wednesday while Japan, South Korea and China recorded easy victories in the latest round of Asian
 arrow Football: Wear 10 for inspiration
Latvia midfielder Andrejs Rubins is unlikely to join the list of great number 10s but Francesco Totti, Michael Owen and Ruud van Nistelrooy just might.
 arrow Football: Don't Czech out
Four years after having their hopes shattered at Euro 2000 the Czech Republic once again arrive at a major finals with an outside chance of success.
Culturearrow Miles vs Malik
The lawsuit filed by popular rock band of the country, Miles, against Indian music director Anu Malik for alleged tunelifting has been the talk of the town in recent days.
 arrow 'Recitation now extends to fairytales'--Rupa
Rupa Chakraborty is one of the most acclaimed modern day recitation artistes.
 arrow Bangladesh Film Archive celebrations
On the second day of the silver jubilee celebration of Bangladesh Film Archive (BFA), which started on June 8, a seminar was held at the poet Sufia Kamal Auditorium.
 arrow Van Halen reunion tour
The Van Halen reunion is looking to be one of the biggest tours of the summer.
 arrow Donald Duck turns 70!
Donald Duck, one of Walt Disney's most endearing characters, is celebrating his 70th birthday. Celebrations will be taking place at Disney resorts and other venues across the globe to mark the milestone.
Generalarrow Three muggers to die

A Dhaka Court yesterday sentenced three muggers to death for killing the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) Inspector Nazrul Islam on July 25 in 2002 in the city.

 arrow 2 murdered, fish trader mugged in city
A youth was gunned down at Mohammadpur and a trader mugged at Khilgaon yesterday while an unidentified body was recovered at Badda in the city on Wednesday night.
 arrow DU students develop software to thumb SMS, e-mail via cell phones
A group of Dhaka University students has developed a software, enabling cell phone users to send and receive electronic mail (e-mail) and SMS (Short Messaging Service) via their handsets.
 arrow Outlaw killed, 5 cops hurt in gunfight
An outlaw was killed and five police officers were injured during a pre-dawn gunfight between police and armed cadres of Purbo Banglar Communist Party (M-L) in Greenland slum area close to the Skid Ghat
 arrow Yet another schoolboy abducted in Kushtia
Criminals on Wednesday abducted a seven-year-old kindergarten schoolboy and demanded Tk 3 lakh ransom, adding to the growing numder of abductions in the terror-struck district.
 arrow BSF, BDR trade fire along Panchagarh border
Border Security Forces (BSF) of India and Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) exchanged fire along the Boda border of the Panhagarh district yesterday morning.
 arrow Ctg BNP hails budget, AL terms it 'anti-people'
The ruling BNP and its front organisations held rallies and took out processions in the port city yesterday hailing the national budget for 2004-2005 while the opposition Awami League rejected the budget
 arrow NDI analyses Munshiganj voter turnout
The National Democratic Institute (NDI), a non-governmental organisation working to strengthen democracy worldwide, has released a report on voter turnout in recent Munshiganj-1 by-election.
 arrow viscera report next week
Police yesterday sent the viscera of a teacher of Shahjalal University of Science and Technology (SUST) to the Institute of Public Health at Mohakhali to confirm the cause of death.
 arrow Girl stabbed to death over land dispute
Armed assailants stabbed a teenage girl to death and injured two women in an attack on their house at Laxminagar in Bagha upazila yesterday afternoon.
Editorialarrow Editorial: Deaths in debris
The building collapse in Old Dhaka is a tragic reminder of the truth that a large number of dilapidated structures and buildings in that part of the city have long crossed the limits of safety.
 arrow Editorial: Unregulated ship-breaking industry
Once again the people and the environment in Chittagong are exposed to toxic hazards emanating from a ship-breaking yard. Only last year, a similar incident in the same area affected animal and plantlife.
 arrow 'Failed state' and Bangladesh
Is Bangladesh a failed state? The question itself, in my view, is unjustified, and those who ask it insult our very existence.
 arrow Give up your future
I know it is easier said than done, perhaps even easier for someone who does not have to do it himself. But once I also was encouraged to sacrifice past and present on the altar of the future.
 arrow Monitoring global poverty
The World Bank, through its 2004 World Development Indicators, has released new global poverty estimates for the 1981 to 2001 period.
Letters to Editorarrow Bus arson
Last Friday when the people were least expecting it some arsonists engaged by certain political activists set fire to a fully packed double-decker bus resulting in death of ten innocent people and many
 arrow Flawed democracy
Now is the time to define democracy as "Rule of the people, for the people, by the people". Now is the time to seek out what a real democracy is. Now is the time to expose the real face of democracy.
 arrow Same sex marriage a religion independent approach
In a number of letters appearing in these columns on the above issue, those in favour of it have criticised the opponents of bringing in religion. Let us have a religion independent view then.
 arrow General McArthur and "Medhabi
On May 30 afternoon, I was watching the TV quiz programme "Medhabi" on NTV.
 arrow CNG passengers
CNGs were welcomed when they first started to ply the city roads for some particular reasons.
 arrow Munshiganj by-election
Munshigonj district, especially Bikrampur, has always been a stronghold of the BNP. The AL did not fare well in any national election there.
 arrow Degeneration
The husband of a "bottomless" country's diplomat goes to a "topless" night-club and allegedly spends $130,000 (Costly night at topless club, DS, 5 June) in just one night! You must see the irony in this.
 arrow Of a poster
This is a response to the letter of Mr. AZM Abdul Ali published in June 4, 2004.
 arrow Role of media
I have a question. Does mass media follow or count source credibility? I'm a student of mass communication and journalism. As far as I know source credibility is a key factor for news.
 arrow Can academia fulfil our aspirations?
Dr. Saad Andaleeb's article on above subject (DS: 30/05/04) rings alarm bell on our national conscience. Mr. Z. Islam in the letters column (DS: 4/06/04) emphasised on research and publications by teachers.
 arrow Politics in Pakistan
President Parvez Musharraf's rhetoric on "enlightened moderation" (vide The Daily Star dated 02-6-04) can be regarded as a good piece of literature depicting the past glory of the Muslims, but it isdestined
Worldarrow G8 harmony dissolves, US-France spats back
World leaders yesterday wrap up a G8 summit after a new era of trans-Atlantic unity dissolved in just one day into fresh US-France spats and squabbles over Iraq's 120 billion dollar debt pile.
 arrow Iraq needs US forces after June 30: Allawi
Iraq will need American and other foreign troops to fight guerrillas even after a US-led occupation formally ends on June 30, interim Prime Minister Iyad Allawi said on Wednesday.
 arrow Lawsuit filed against US contractors
Two US defence contractors were accused in a class-action suit on Wednesday of conspiring with US officials to torture and abuse prisoners in Iraq.
 arrow 11 Chinese shot dead in Afghanistan
Eleven Chinese construction workers were gunned down yesterday in a usually peaceful area of northeastern Afghanistan in one of the worst attacks against foreigners since the fall of the Taliban regime.
 arrow Nuke confidence building with Pakistan is India's top priority: Natwar
India will give high priority to forging nuclear confidence-building measures with Pakistan during upcoming meetings, Foreign Minister Natwar Singh said yesterday.
 arrow Bush policies created Iraq abuse: HR group
Human Rights Watch on Wednesday accused the Bush administration of creating the climate for the Iraqi prison torture scandal when it "cast the rules aside" on prisoner interrogation techniques.
 arrow Fighting rages in Taliban stronghold
US-led forces have engaged in fierce fighting with insurgents that has left 70 suspected Taliban dead in the past week, as violence continues in the militia's former strongholds, officials said Wednesday.
 arrow Reagan's body lies in state, thousands pay tribute
Thousands of Americans filed silently past Ronald Reagan's body at the US Capitol yesterday in an emotional outpouring of respect and affection for the 40th president of the United States.
 arrow 'JI terror group targets Jakarta envoys'
The al-Qaeda-linked Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) terror group has switched tactics from bombings and is now targeting Western ambassadors in Indonesia for assassination, a newspaper reported Thursday.
 arrow Iraqi missile engines found in Jordan: UN
Engines for long-range missiles have turned up in Jordan from unguarded sites in Iraq that were once monitored for materials that could produce banned weapons, UN inspectors said Wednesday.