Vol. 5 Num 126 Tue. September 28, 2004    
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Front Pagearrow HSC pass rate rides to four-year high
Higher secondary education received an apparent boost as 47.
 arrow Logistics dearth throws spanner in sending peacekeepers
Bangladesh armed forces, which have earned respect of the world community for their commendable skills and highest contribution to the UN peacekeeping missions, are facing difficulties in sending more
 arrow Severe power cut in capital, southwest
The capital and the southwest region of Bangladesh experienced severe power disruptions yesterday after a grid line in Dhaka tripped and three units of two power plants in Khulna with a total capacity
 arrow NCB drive against default loans falls flat again
The four nationalised commercial banks (NCBs) could recover only 1 percent of loans from top 20 defaulters against a target of 7 percent and blamed the poor recovery on the public enterprises that are
 arrow 309 rounded up as mass arrest enters sixth day
Three hundred and nine people were hauled up in the capital in 24 hours ending yesterday morning as police continued wholesale arrest of opposition political activists ahead of the October 3 grand rally
 arrow Gear up crackdown on criminals
Prime Minister Khaleda Zia yesterday directed the police to gear up crackdown on criminals and terrorists to improve the law and order further.
 arrow Partha finally hospitalised
Shaibal Saha Partha, one of the four accused in the August 21 grenade attack case, was hospitalised at long last yesterday at the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University Hospital (BSMMUH) four days
 arrow Outbreak of diseases in flood-hit dists
Surging floodwaters from upstream India yesterday inundated 20 more villages in Shalikha upazila of Magura while waterborne diseases have broken out in the flooded Satkhira and Jessore districts as water
 arrow Family has info Jamal still alive
Business magnate Jamal Uddin Chowdhury, abducted for ransom over 14 months ago from the port city's busy Chawkbazar area by an armed gang, is still alive in the hideout of his kidnappers, his family members
 arrow RU finalises 19 controversial recruitment
The Rajshahi University (RU) authorities have finalised recruitment of 19 teachers amid controversy while initiatives to recruit 22 more teachers are on.
 arrow Basila people lift indefinite resistance
Vessels resumed plying the Buriganga river through Basila in Hazaribagh yesterday as the Buriganga erosion victims of the neighbourhood withdrew their resistance movement on assurance by local ward commissioners
 arrow World oil prices head towards $50 on supply fears
Oil prices raced ahead to new record high levels in London and approached 50 dollars in New York as unrest in oil producers Nigeria and Saudi Arabia stoked supply worries, traders said.
 arrow Innocence proved, only too late
Much to the disgrace to country's judicial system, Falu Mia languished in prison for about 22 long years without trial and even more tragically, he could not live to see the court decree that proved his
 arrow Monster asteroid flies by Earth Wednesday
On Wednesday, Earth will get its closest known shave this century from a major asteroid, a monster big enough to extinguish billions of lives were it ever to collide with our home.
 arrow GPA-5 galore
As many as 3,036 students secured Grade Point Average (GPA)-5, the highest achievable level, in this year's Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) examinations against last year's only 20.
 arrow No-one passed from 281 institutions
No-one passed from as many as 281 educational institutions in this year's Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC), Alim, Fazil, Kamil and HSC Vocational Examinations.
 arrow Cell phones go blank on results
Hundreds of cell phone users yesterday got frustrated failing to get the results of the Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) examinations through short message service (SMS).
 arrow 'Strengthen DGFI for national security'
The parliamentary standing committee on defence ministry yesterday noted with concern that national security is under threat in the wake of the August 21 grenade attack on an Awami League rally in Dhaka.
 arrow Hasina turns 58 today
Leader of the Opposition and Awami League (AL) chief Sheikh Hasina turns 58 today.
 arrow Public toilet caretaker remanded
A caretaker of a public toilet arrested Sunday in connection with the August 21 grenade attack has been remanded in custody for five days yesterday.
 arrow Rab arrests murder convict in Cox's Bazar
The Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) arrested a convicted murderer and his two sons after a gunfight in Maheshkhali in Cox's Bazar yesterday.
 arrow BDR chief reaches Delhi
Director General of Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) Major General Jahangir Alam Chowdhury yesterday said there had been "a lot of progress" since the last meeting with his Indian counterpart.
 arrow Saifur leaves for Washington
Finance and Planning Minister M Saifur Rahman yesterday set out for Washington to attend the annual meeting of the World Bank (WB) and International Monetary Fund (IMF).
 arrow 249 out of 480 cadets get GPA
As many as 249 out of 480 examinees from 10 cadet colleges have obtained GPA-5 (A+) in the Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) examinations, 2004 under seven education boards.
 arrow Students block Agragaon road, ransack 50 vehicles
Students of Sher-e-Bangla Krishi University yesterday vandalised about 50 vehicles and blocked the Agargaon Road for two hours to protest an accident that left a fellow student critically injured.
Businessarrow Meeting tomorrow to devise new anti-piracy strategy
In the wake of growing incidents of piracy, an anti-piracy committee formed by the Ministry of Shipping will meet tomorrow to devise new strategies to combat robbery at the outer anchorage of Chittagong
 arrow Holcim launches new cement for plastering
Leading cement producer Holcim Bangladesh Ltd has launched low-cost cement exclusively for plastering and bricklaying works.
 arrow Bangladesh, Taiwan joint business council soon
In a bid to increase investment and boost cooperation in technology transfer, Bangladesh and Taiwan will form a joint business council soon.
 arrow Indian textile exporters resent DEPB rate cut
Indian exporters have resented the government's decision to drastically reduce the Duty Entitlement Pass Book (DEPB) rates for textile exports and cautioned there could be a dip in textile exports.
 arrow FBCCI chief urges world business leaders to invest in Bangladesh
The country's apex business body took an international conference being held in Switzerland as an opportunity to invite world business leaders to invest in Bangladesh.
 arrow China garment manufacturers to up capacity as quotas ending
Nearly 90 percent of Chinas garment manufacturers intend to increase capacity when garment and textile quotas are abolished from January 1 next year, according to the findings of a survey by trade sourcing
 arrow Shahjalal Islami Bank opens branch at Karwan Bazar
Shahjalal Islami Bank has opened its branch at Karwan Bazar in Dhaka.

Chairman of the bank Sajjatuz Jumma inaugurated the branch on Sunday, says a press release.

 arrow Islami Bank opens branch at Kanaighat
Islami Bank Bangladesh Limited (IBBL) opened a branch of the bank at Kanaighat Bazar, Sylhet recently.

Farid Uddin Chowdhury MP inaugurated the branch, says a press release.

 arrow High oil price not due to supply problem
The Opec producers' cartel is supplying enough crude oil to the global market and near-record oil prices are not due to any supply/demand imbalance, president Purnomo Yusgiantoro said Monday.
 arrow Volvo opens regional headquarters at Singapore
European bus and construction equipment manufacturer Volvo Group said Monday it was bullish on China, Southeast Asia and India as it opened a new regional headquarters here.
 arrow ICB Securities Trading okays 25pc dividend
ICB Securities Trading Company Limited , a subsidiary of Investment Corporation of Bangladesh, has approved 25 percent dividend for its shareholders for FY 2003-'04.
 arrow Clouds on the horizon for low-cost airlines
As larger US airlines suffer growing losses, low-cost carriers, previously thought to be invincible, are not far behind, industry experts say, due to soaring jet fuel prices, low air fares and more competition.
 arrow India to spend $550m to improve roads in IT hub
The Indian government is to pump 25.5 billion rupees (550 million dollars) into improving the road network in Karnataka state, home of IT hub Bangalore, a minister said Monday.
 arrow Microsoft still wants EU settlement
Microsoft Corp's chief counsel, briefing reporters in the lead-up to a European Union court hearing this week, said on Monday he remains hopeful the software giant's European antitrust case can be settled.
Sportsarrow Cricket: Two batting problems
Bangladeshi batsmen will need overcome a couple of major weaknesses in technique and mentality if they expect to stand up to New Zealand in next month's home series, feels coach Dav Whatmore.
 arrow Cricket: Stay away from rupees: Adam
Australia's stand-in captain Adam Gilchrist believes one sure-shot way to win a Test series in India for the first time in 35 years is for teammates to stay away from the lure of the rupee.
 arrow Cricket: BCCI reveals contracts
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Sunday announced a long-awaited list of contracted players under a new system which starts from October 1.
 arrow Hockey: India level in style
India's fast-rising penalty corner striker Sandeep Singh scored two goals within three minutes to power his team to a comfortable 4-1 win over arch-rivals Pakistan in the second hockey match here on Monday.
 arrow Cricket: Deal in the dock again
India's Supreme Court on Monday said it would hear a petition by a television network against the nation's cricket board raising further concerns over the upcoming home series against Australia.
 arrow Paralympics: China runaway leaders
China kicked off the last full day of competition at the Paralympics Monday by winning two of the first three athletics finals, pushing their total haul of gold medals to 55.
 arrow Tennis: Agassi factor
Andre Agassi hasn't played Davis Cup since 2000, but US captain Patrick McEnroe said he wouldn't rule out a return for the eight-time Grand Slam champion.
 arrow Tennis: NZ hit a new low in Davis Cup
New Zealand was condemned to zonal qualifying for the first time in its Davis Cup history after losing to Pakistan in a hard-fought tie here Monday.
 arrow Tennis: Clijsters sets for comeback
Former world number one Kim Clijsters will make her long-awaited return to action after a five-month injury absence at this week's 170,000-dollar tournament here.
 arrow Football: Super Shevchenko
Two goals in four minutes from Ukrainian striker Andriy Shevchen-ko gave AC Milan a 2-1 win away to Lazio and kick-started the Italian champions' title defence here on Sunday.
 arrow Football: Crisis clubs face to face
Two clubs seemingly vying to make Europe's most miserable start to a season, Real Madrid and AS Roma, will meet this week on their return to Champions League duty.
 arrow Football: Del Bosque again?
Former Real Madrid coach Vicente Del Bosque, who has had a disastrous start this season with Istanbul's Besiktas, will be called to account Monday by the team's executive board, a club official said late
 arrow Football: Top two cruise
Valencia and Barcelona maintained their unbeaten records this season, and remain neck-and-neck at the top of the Spanish first division, after convincing wins on Sunday.
 arrow Football: MU profits take a dive
Manchester United on Monday reported lower annual profits of 27.9 million pounds from 39.3 milllion last time and warned future results would be affected by a drop in media revenues.
 arrow Cricket: Corporate houses lose a battle
The Twenty20 cricket is set to be introduced in the country despite protests from the corporate houses.
 arrow Hockey: Hosts to train in Dhaka
The Bangladesh Hockey Federation finally allowed coach Qamar Ibrahim to bring his Under-21 squad to Dhaka from the tranquil settings of BKSP in Savar.
 arrow Football: NSU thru' after IBAIS walkout
North South University moved into the semifinal of the Stamford Inter Private University Football Tournament after IBAIS University refused to take part in yesterday's controversial play-off match atthe
 arrow Cricket: Pakistan tour India in Feb
Pakistan's cricket team will tour India in February next year to play three Test matches and five one-day internationals, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Shaharyar Khan said Monday.
 arrow Basketball: School basketball finals today
The finals of the AKTEL School Basketball Tournament will be held today at the Dhanmondi Basketball Gymnasium.
 arrow Football: Abahani take on ROK Varsities in opener
Abahani will kick off their Kings Cup campaign in Bhutan against South Korean Universities on September 30.

The Sky Blues left Dhaka yesterday to take part in the 8-team tournament in Thimpu.

 arrow Cricket: Strauss not yet decided
England batsman Andrew Strauss said on Sunday that he has yet to decide whether or not to join international teammate Steve Harmison and boycott the scheduled tour of Zimbabwe.
 arrow Athletics: Asian all-star athletics in Singapore
Many of Asia's best athletes began arriving in Singapore on Monday as the city-state prepared to host a unique competition for the region's elite track and field stars.
 arrow Cricket: Farhat dropped from Pak side
Pakistan retained experienced but out of form wicketkeeper-batsman Moin Khan and axed opener Imran Farhat and all-rounder Azhar Mahmood for their home tri-series, Pakistan Cricket Board announced Monday.
 arrow Cricket: SL exclude Malinga
Sri Lanka have dropped paceman Lasith Malinga in favour of the more experienced Dilhara Fernando for their triangular series starting in Pakistan this week.
 arrow Pakistan TV row resolved for now
A threatened television blackout of the upcoming cricket tri-series was averted Monday after two feuding Dubai-based channels agreed to a compromise, the Pakistan Cricket Board said.
Metropolitanarrow Draft prepared for integrated transport system
A draft on Integrated Multi-Modal Transport Policy (IMTP) has been prepared for a fully integrated transport system ensuring smooth vehicular movement.
 arrow 'Free country from 2-party polarisation'
Bangladesh Communist Party (CPB) President Manjurul Ahsan Khan yesterday said the country has to be freed from two-party polarisation.
 arrow Construction work to begin during alliance govt tenure
Communications Minister Nazmul Huda has said work on the construction of Padma bridge will begin during the tenure of the alliance government.
 arrow Tk 267 cr project under consideration
State Minister for LGRD and Co-operatives Ziaul Huq Zia yesterday said that the union parishads and "Gram Sarkar" would be given more assistance for completing the sanitation programme by 2010.
 arrow JU students continue to boycott exams,classes
Students of computer science and engineering department of Jahangirnagar University (JU) continued to boycott their classes and examinations for the third consecutive day yesterday demanding immediate
 arrow 'Stop activities of mini-engineering cells'
Employees of Housing and Public Works Ministry yesterday called on the government to take necessary steps to stop activities of mini-engineering cells created in different ministries for constructionand
 arrow PM goes to Comilla today
Prime Minister Khaleda Zia will arrive here today on a daylong visit.
 arrow 'Sarbashreshtha Bangalee' launched
A poetry book titled 'Sarbashreshtha Bangalee' by Ayet Ali Patwari was launched in the city yesterday.
 arrow Female garment worker murdered, two electrocuted
Body of a female garment worker was recovered at Mirpur while two persons including a boy were electrocuted at Pallabi in the city yesterday.
 arrow Armed cadre of outlawed party injured in attack
An armed cadre of an outlawed party was severely injured in an attack at his house at Chuknagar Bazar in Dumuria on Sunday midnight.
 arrow Biggest haul of marijuana
The Department of Narcotics Control (DNC) recovered about 93 kg of marijuana from a train on Sunday night.
 arrow CPA dismantles 2 huge billboards
The Chittagong Port Authority dismantled two unauthorised huge billboards at the VIP Road along the bank of river Karnaphuli during a drive on Sunday.
 arrow Reopening of Cuet demanded
Students of Chittagong University of Engineering and Technology (CUET) formed a human chain on the Central Shaheed Minar premises yesterday demanding immediate reopening of the university.
 arrow 11th IPU confce begins in Geneva today
A parliamentary delegation led by Deputy Speaker Akhtar Hamid Siddigui left here yesterday to attend the 111th Inter Parliamentary Union Conference in Geneva yesterday.
Nationalarrow A big boost to shrimps in sight
Shahidul Islam, like many, had abandoned shrimp cultivation after incurring heavy losses in consecutive years. He is now back to the profession with a renewed vigor.
 arrow Paturia-Daulatdia channel risky as Padma falling fast
Dredging of the Paturia-Daulatdia channel in the Padma has started but BIWTA officials say more dredgers should be engaged to keep the passage navigable because the river is falling fast.
 arrow Pneumonia kills 4 in Mymensingh
Pneumonia claimed three lives and attacked over 70 people in the district in last two weeks till Saturday, according to sources at the Civil Surgeon's (CS) office here yesterday.
 arrow Criminals now prefer to remain in jail
Extremists and hardened criminals arrested from different areas of South-Western region now prefer to remain behind the bar and those outside have become panicky and are on the run.
 arrow 100 Patuakhali JCD men hurt in mob beating
Over 100 JCD leaders and activists were injured, 38 of them seriously, when local people at Lebukhali ferry terminal on the Barisal-Patuakhali highway on Saturday night attack three buses carrying the
 arrow 2 killed, 40 hurt in road mishaps
Two persons were killed and about 40 injured in road accidents in Manikganj and Gaibandha yesterday and the day before.
 arrow Tk 24 cr fishes washed away in Magura
Fishes worth about Tk 24 crore were washed away in four upazilas of the district by the flood triggered by eight days of downpour since September 9.
 arrow Dowry: College teacher held for beating wife
A government college teacher has been arrested on charge of torturing his wife for dowry.
 arrow College students pledge not to smoke
An anti-drug motivation meeting was held at Brahmanbaria Government College on Sunday.
 arrow Gafur makes confession in court
Abdul Gafur, the main accused in the sensational arms haul case, made a confessional statement under Section 164 before First Class Magistrate Bijoy Kishna Debnath at Bandarban court on Sunday.
 arrow Interest-free loan given to poor in Manikganj
A UK based NGO--Muslim Aid Bangladesh--on Sunday distributed Tk 4,000 interest-free loan each to 50 poor families in Saturia in the district under a micro-credit programme.
 arrow BCCI meet foiled by ruling party
A meeting of the Executive Committee of Barisal Camber of Commerce and Industries (BCCI), scheduled for Sunday, could not be held as its members were barred from coming to the venue allegedly by ruling
 arrow VGF rice distribution begins in Moulvibazar
A total of 1,15,700 700 VGF cards have been distributed in Moulvibazar district to supply foodgrains among flood affected people.
 arrow Gaibandha BNP elects new party leaders
Kamrul Hasan Salim and Rafiqul Islam were elected general secretary and organising secretary of Gaibandha district BNP at a general meeting of the party held at Gaibandha Public Library Hall Sunday evening.
 arrow 50 hurt in clash over fishing
At least 50 people including 10 women were injured in a clash between two groups over fishing in a pond at Harihar village in Sailkupa upazila in Jhenidah district on Sunday.
 arrow Life term for raping 7-yr girl
A court here on Sunday sentenced one person to life term imprisonment and also fined him Tk 25,000 for raping a seven-year girl.
Point-Counterpointarrow Behind the border basics
International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) has on board, inter alia, the South Asia Initiative (SAI).
 arrow Activating parliamentary standing committees
On September 16, 2004 before the prorogation of the 13th session the Parliament (Sangsad) reconstituted parliamentary standing committees incorporating lawmakers from the main opposition party Awami League
 arrow Style over substance
President George W. Bush, and four-term Senator John Kerry will face off in 90 minutes of posturing, posing, and styling worthy of the best Hollywood directors on Thursday night at the University of Miami.
Culturearrow A treat for film buffs
Rainbow Film Society, a pioneer film society in the country, has arranged a 10-day long session on Bangladeshi films in the United Kingdom. The programme starts from October 3, 2004 in four venues inLondon.
 arrow I am more of the slow and steady kind --Jaya
Jaya Ahsan, talented actress cum model, recently spoke to the Cultural Correspondent of The Daily Star.
 arrow The Freedom of the City --Udichi's latest venture
Most political crimes in the world remain unresolved.
 arrow Thumri Queen Shobha Gurtu passes away
Noted vocalist Shobha Gurtu died at her Worli residence in central Mumbai on Monday following cardiac arrest, family sources said. She was 78.
Generalarrow College student escapes from abductors
A college student made a daring escape from his abductors yesterday morning after the gang kept him confined to an abandoned house at Daulatkhali village in Daulatpur upazila.
 arrow 4 get life for raping girl
Rajshahi Divisional Speedy Trial Tribunal yesterday sentenced four people to life term imprisonment for raping an 11-year-old girl in Belkuchi upazila, Sirajganj.
 arrow Safe water for flood victims
Save the Children (USA), an international NGO, has been supplying safe drinking water to the flood-affected and water-logged people in Dhaka.
 arrow Free country from clutches of fundamentalists
Awami League presidium member Begum Motia Chowdhury yesterday called upon all pro-liberation forces to get united to free the country from the clutches of "fundamentalists and communal forces".
 arrow Adv Zainul new BNP law secy
BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia appointed former general secretary of the Bangladesh Supreme Court Bar Association Advocate Zainul Abedin as one of the law affairs secretaries of the BNP National Committee.
 arrow Concert in aid of flood victims
A daylong concert in aid of flood victims was held at the Fantasy Kingdom, a theme park, at Ashulia on September 24, says a press release.
Internationalarrow US faces new challenge in war on terror in Asia
In the fight against terrorism in Asia, the United States faces a new dilemma: Devising strategies against violent national armed groups in Asia that have potential to internationalise their operations.
 arrow Carter foresees unfair voting in Florida
A repetition of problems that plagued the 2000 US presidential election is likely, former US president and veteran elections monitor Jimmy Carter said yesterday, charging that "basic international requi-rements"
 arrow Govt urges Nepalis to defy Maoist strike
The government yesterday urged Nepalese to defy a two-day strike call by Maoist rebels fighting to overthrow the monarchy.
 arrow Jeanne leaves swath of destruction in Florida
Hurricane Jeanne tore a fresh path of destruction and despair as it continued its march up storm-ravaged Florida, where the fourth major hurricane in six weeks shut down much of the state and prompted
 arrow Musharraf's birthday gift for Manmohan
A meeting with Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf brought an unexpected birthday present for Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
 arrow No reason to doubt Manmohan's sincerity
Pakistan President Pervez Musha-rraf has said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is committed to peace between the two countries and there is no reason to doubt his sincerity.
 arrow Arafat remains defiant despite confinement
The Intifada has developed into one of the grimmest chapters in the life of Yasser Arafat, who is confined to his headquarters, showered with death threats and the target of growing calls for reform.
 arrow Consequences of Iraq war 'terrible and tragic': Blix
The United Nations' former chief weapons inspector, Hans Blix, said yesterday the consequences of the war in Iraq were for the most part "terrible and tragic".
 arrow Pearl slaying suspect killed in Pakistan
Paramilitary police killed a suspected top al-Qaeda operative, wanted for alleged involvement in the kidnapping of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, during a four-hour shootout Sunday at a southern
 arrow Tamils dumps corpse outside Norwegian embassy
For a second time in a week, protesters yesterday dumped the coffin of a Tamil politician killed by suspected Tamil Tiger rebels outside the Norwegian embassy in the Sri Lankan capital.
 arrow Taj Mahal town fetes birthday of famed tomb to love
Tourists flocked to the Indian city of Agra yesterday for the start of marathon celebrations marking the 350th anniversary of the Taj Mahal, the architectural wonder built by a Mughal emperor in memory
Editorialarrow Editorial: Mass arrests continue
Two days ago we wrote an editorial protesting the crackdown on opposition party workers and activists, and since then things have only gone from bad to worse.
 arrow Editorial: Promoting an accused?
The government decision to promote Major (retd) Khairuzzaman, an accused in the jail killing case who was reinstated in foreign office following the Administrative Tribunal's clearance in 2003, has raised
 arrow Partha's plight: Blatant disregard for law
The utter helplessness and the pitiful spectacle of a person, alleged to have committed a crime, seeking succor for his medical as well as legal travails, will evoke compassion in the hearts of all except
 arrow Pressures for proliferation
Iran is now one of the two main targets for America's current anti-proliferation drive.
Letters to Editorarrow Jail killing FIR
Thanks to The Daily Star for its publication of the report on the FIR of 1975 lodged by KA Awal, the then DIG of Prisons.
 arrow Popularize LPG
The prime minister is right to encourage the use of LPG in non-piped areas of the country (funny no pipeline in the North after half a century!).
 arrow Bush's war on terrorism?
How far US President George Bush has been successful in combating and stopping international terrorism?

Bush attacked Afghanistan and Iraq, formed a coalition army with many of his sycophant countries,

 arrow Commerce Faculty
Jahangirnagar University, the only residential university in our country, is saddled with a host of problems and limitations.
 arrow Medical service
The government is touting the healthy development growth rate of medical services in Bangladesh.