Volume 5 Number 127 Wed. September 29, 2004    
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Today's Index
Front Pagearrow HR groups to move court to stop wholesale arrest
Leading human-rights (HR) organisations yesterday decided to challenge the government crackdown on the opposition activists and innocent people alike in a bid to force it into wrapping up the ongoingblanket
 arrow Rip-off at Ctg Port
Chittagong Port and customs officials extract about Tk 783 crore from importers and exporters in bribes and tips a year, Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) said in a stunning study released yesterday.
 arrow GPA-5 galore signals tough admission race
Tough competition awaits students seeking admission to the best public universities as a record number of students passed this year's Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) examinations under the seven education
 arrow JS body smells rat in high year-end ADP spending
A Jatiya Sangsad (JS) body smells a rat in the trend of ministries hurriedly using up Annual Development Programme (ADP) funds at the fag end of the last financial year.
 arrow BDB, Gano Forum mull electoral union
Bikalpa Dhara Bangladesh (BDB) chief Prof AQM Badruddoza Chowdhury and Gono Forum President Dr Kamal Hossain said they would consider forming an electoral alliance to resist reactionary forces, if necessary.
 arrow A party desperate for power with foreign force help
Prime Minister Khaleda Zia yesterday alleged that a certain party became desperate to go to power with the help of foreign powers.
 arrow Tax return deadline extended till Oct 31
The National Board of Revenue (NBR) has extended to October 31 the deadline for submission of individual income tax returns in the wake of the floods and demands from different organisations.
 arrow 2 British soldiers killed in ambush
A pair of Egyptian hostages were freed yesterday as two British soldiers were killed in a rare flare-up of violence in southern Iraq and US warplanes again pounded the rebel-held town of Fallujah.
 arrow Maoist strike shuts down Kathmandu
Nine suspected Maoist rebels were gunned down and a bomb ripped through a bank in the Nepalese capital Kathmandu yesterday as a guerrilla strike shut shops and transport in much of the Himalayan kingdom.
 arrow Trans-boundary issues to rule talks
Biannual talks between the BSF and the BDR began in New Delhi yesterday as India called for a 'realistic and pragmatic approach' to dealing with the border issues and Bangladesh a 'path of trust and understanding'.
 arrow Oil surges to $50.47 a barrel
Oil prices soared to a new record above $50 yesterday as uncertainties over Nigerian output heightened worries of a severe supply disruption ahead of winter.

US light crude jumped 83 cents to $50.

 arrow Magura, Satkhira reel from floods
Flood situation in southwestern Magura and Satkhira districts remained unchanged yesterday with waterborne diseases spreading fast in the affected areas.
 arrow Mars orbiter photographs Rover from space
A spacecraft orbiting Mars photographed one of Nasa's rovers and its tracks on the surface, the space agency said yesterday.
 arrow AL resolute to hold Oct 3 rally
The main opposition Awami League (AL) and its front organisations are taking all-out preparations to make the October 3 rally at Paltan Maidan a success, despite mass arrests of party leaders and workers
 arrow Quest for a Drop of Life

 arrow JU initiates probe into teacher's fatwa
Jahangirnagar University (JU) authorities yesterday formed a five-member probe body to investigate the issuing of fatwa (religious edict) by an assistant professor of physics department on September 26
 arrow Another convict to walk gallows tomorrow
Amrita Lal, the third policeman sentenced to death in the sensational Yasmin rape and murder case of Dinajpur, will be hanged at Rangpur Central Jail at 12:01am tomorrow.
 arrow Outlaws kill 2, gun battle with jt forces
Cadres of outlawed Purbo Banglar Communist Party (PBCP) gunned down two brothers including a freedom fighter in Rajbari while in Kushtia a PBCP man was killed and at least 15 were injured in an hour-long
 arrow Judicial body feels footage of TV channel doctored
The judicial commission probing the August 21 grenade attack on an Awami League rally felt some parts of a video footage of a private TV channel that identified two suspects were doctored.
 arrow Witness sick
Recording of statement of a witness in the historic Jail Killing Case, for which the verdict was deferred once, is unlikely today as the witness is sick.
 arrow Southwest farmers to come under agri rehab
The government has decided to bring under its agriculture rehabilitation programme small and marginal farmers affected by the recent excessive rain and floods in the southwestern region.
 arrow Six to die for killing N'ganj BNP leader
A Narayanganj court yesterday sentenced six people to death and eight to life imprisonment for killing BNP leader Habibur Rahman Habib.
 arrow Italian hostages released in Iraq
Two Italian women aid workers held hostage in Iraq have been released and handed over to the Italian charge d'affaires in Baghdad, Al Jazeera television said yesterday.
 arrow Blair's qualified Iraq apology to woo party
Tony Blair offered his Labour party yesterday a partial apology for waging war in Iraq -- a desperate attempt to pull supporters back behind him ahead of an election next year.
Businessarrow Involve private sector to better Ctg port services
Speakers at a roundtable in Dhaka yesterday called for involving private sector in port management and introducing performance-based salary for both port and customs officials to check corruption andimprove
 arrow Maintain ethics, standards to ensure transparency
Auditing and accounting professionals should maintain ethics and efficiently apply standards in preparing balance sheets to ensure financial transparency, said Commerce Minister Altaf Hossain Choudhury
 arrow Three-day cosmetics show begins tomorrow
The first-ever exhibition of cosmetics, toiletries and perfumeries begins tomorrow at Dhaka Sheraton Hotel.

Dhaka mayor Sadeq Hossain Khoka will inaugurate the three-day fair styled as 'COTOPEX2004'.

 arrow Indian entrepreneurs keen to invest in pharma sector
Indian pharmaceutical entrepreneurs yesterday in Dhaka expressed interest to set up joint ventures in Bangladesh and also urged local companies to look for partners from the neighbouring country.
 arrow Sri Lanka hikes prices amid gloomy economic prospect
Sri Lanka raised bus fares, electricity and food prices Tuesday on the back of a steep rise in diesel costs as the Central Bank reported a worse than expected balance of payments deficit.
 arrow Finance chiefs see brighter world economy, but storm clouds loom
World finance chiefs meeting in Washington this week will express satisfaction with a rebounding global economy, but also highlight risks from surging oil prices, turmoil in Iraq and other factors.
 arrow Emirates gets business traveller award
Business travellers in Asia Pacific have voted Dubai-based international carrier Emirates "Best Middle Eastern/African Airline," in a readers' survey conducted by Business Traveller Asia-Pacific.
 arrow Oil prices to ground air transport profits: IATA
Sky-high oil costs will keep air transport profits in the basement, with losses between three billion and four billion dollars this year, despite a pickup in traffic, the international air trade association
 arrow StanChart, CityCell sign deal on SMS banking
Standard Chartered Bank and Pacific Bangladesh Telecom Limited (CityCell) have signed an agreement to offer SMS banking services to the bank's credit cardholders and account holders through CityCell mobile
 arrow Eastern Bank makes debut on CSE today
Eastern Bank Limited (EBL) makes its debut on Chittagong Stock Exchange (CSE) today.

The Bank has fulfilled necessary requirements to get listed with the CSE, says a press release.

 arrow Pepsi Bottling profit rises
Pepsi Bottling Group Inc, the largest bottler of Pepsi drinks, on Tuesday said quarterly profit rose on volume growth in the United States and Europe.
 arrow Vietnam hits out at US over shrimp duties
Vietnam on Monday lashed out at the United States for imposing punitive anti-dumping duties that it said had hurt 3.5 million Vietnamese who make their living from the shrimp industry.
Sportsarrow Cricket: Rain hampers training
Inclement weather continued to frustrate Bangladesh's preparation for the home series against New Zealand for a second successive day at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.
 arrow Basketball: Sunbeams shine
Sunbeams emerged champions in the girls' final of the AKTEL School Basketball Championship when they scored a thrilling 20-19 victory over a spirited Maple Leaf at the Dhanmondi Wooden-floor Basketball
 arrow Cricket: Cricket cries out for reform
Do you have any observation regarding sports and its management? Do you feel certain issues need to be addressed before time runs out? Then, hurry up and send us your burning questions, critical views
 arrow Cricket: A day for the heroes
Hugs, high-fives and kisses were directed at every turn, and work at the Grantley Adams International Airport crawled to snail's pace as the men with the courage under fire returned to a memorable heroes'
 arrow Cricket: No Sachin relief for the Aussies
Australia will not encounter Sachin Tendulkar on the field when they open their Indian tour with a three-day match here from Thursday, but there will be no respite from the master batsman off it.
 arrow Cricket: Pakistanis can't wait
Pakistan's cricketers are eagerly awaiting their tour to India early next year to settle scores against their sporting arch-rivals, captain Inzamamul Haq said Tuesday.
 arrow Football: Mourinho now and then
The Stamford Bridge crowd can expect a tight, tactical battle charged with emotion when Jose Mourinho's old team Porto meet his new charges Chelsea in the Champions League on Wednesday.
 arrow Paralympics: Phenomenal Paralympics
Paralympics head Phil Craven hailed the Athens Games as a success as competition ended Tuesday, but foresaw a major review of the classification system for disabilities, suggesting it may be too complicated.
 arrow Cricket: Tendulkar on song
Indian cricket hero Sachin Tendulkar looks set to move even closer to super-human status next month when the curtain goes up on a Hindi musical based on his colossal achievements.
 arrow Hockey: 3rd Indo-Pak hockey tie today
India hope that surprising crowd support from hockey fans in Pakistan will spur them on to take the lead in the third match of their eight-game series, now tied at 1-1.
 arrow Football: Stamford in final
Hosts Stamford University stormed into the final of first Private University Football Tournament with 5-0 thrashing of Northern University at the Army Stadium yesterday.
 arrow Football: UFA Club in Round Two
UFA Club moved into the second round of the Bandarban Football League after beating Ruma Upazila Krira Sangstha 2-0 at the local stadium yesterday.

The winners earned full points from two matches.

 arrow Hockey: U-21 hockey team lose warm-up
The Bangladesh U-21 hockey team was beaten 2-1 by their depleted national counterparts in a warm-up match at the Maulana Bhasani National Stadium yesterday.
 arrow Kabadi: Wins for Diamond, Wanderers
Dhaka Wanderers Club and Diamond Sporting Club won their respective matches in the Metropolis First Division Kabadi League at the court adjacent to the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.
 arrow Cricket: TV drama drags on
Barely a week before the start of the Test series between India and Australia, there was still no indication Tuesday if the matches will be televised -- or even if the series will be played at all.
 arrow Cricket: Tres, Freddie not going to Zimbabwe
England have left out Marcus Trescothick and Andy Flintoff from their squad for the one-day tour of Zimbabwe.
 arrow Swimming: Nat'l swimming from Oct 5
The 20th National Swimming Championship will be held from October 5 to 8 at the Army Swimming Pool.

Twenty events for men's and 20 for women's will commence in the 4-day meet.

 arrow Cricket: 'Wall' in Aussies' way
If Australia have prepared a hit-list for the Test series in India, Rahul Dravid's name is bound to figure at the top because of his ability to win matches from hopeless situations.
 arrow Football: Del Bosque living on the edge
Turkish side Besiktas denied Tuesday a newspaper report that it had sacked embattled Spanish coach Vicente Del Bosque and would replace him with former Real Sociedad coach Raynald Denoueix.
 arrow Football: Johansson survives Lopez scare
Thomas Johansson survived two match points before upsetting sixth seeded Feliciano Lopez in the opening round of the Thailand Open on Monday.
 arrow Cricket: Bowden doesn't like tech also
Billy Bowden has joined the growing list of umpires who have called into question the increasing use of technology in making umpiring decisions.
 arrow Football: Keane home attacked
Manchester United captain Roy Keane's home was attacked by youths armed with fireworks three days after Keane appeared before magistrates accused of assaulting a 16-year-old boy.
Metropolitanarrow 'Discrimination against girls has reduced'
Discrimination against girl children has significantly reduced due to mass awareness about their rights across the country, said a survey of Bangladesh Shishu Adhikar Forum.
 arrow 166 children killed, 163 raped in six months: BSAF report
A total of 166 children were killed and another 163 were raped across the country in the first six months of this year, according to a report of Bangladesh Shishu Adhikar Forum (BSAF).
 arrow Tagore song competition October 2
Padatik Nattya Sangsad organises a Tagore song competition on October 2 to select five artistes aged between 20 and 27 for the 'Kanika Memorial Award' competition.
 arrow Robbery at JU newsstand
Robbers yesterday looted cash and valuables worth Tk 55,000 from a newsstand at Jahangirnagar University (JU) main gate and injured four people including a university guard.
 arrow BTV World Service to be expanded
The 11th meeting of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Ministry of Information yesterday decided to expand BTV World Service to America and the European countries.
Nationalarrow DANIDA project brings changes in Patuakhali, benefits ultrapoor
A DANIDA project, besides building rural infrastructures in Patuakhali, has helped 1600 ultrapoor women become self-reliant.
 arrow JCD agitation for VC's removal instigated by vested quarters
One hundred and twenty-nine teachers of Chittagong University (CU) has said the ongoing agitation by Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) for removal of the Vice Chancellor is "an act instigated by vested quarters".
 arrow 7 Barisal leaders of AL fronts sent to jail
Seven leaders of Awami Jubo League (AJL) , Sechchashebak League (SL) and Chhatra League (BCL) -- all fronts of opposition Awami League (AL)-- were sent to Barisal Central Jail after their bail prayers
 arrow IU reopens Oct 2
The Islamic University authorities have decided to reopen the institution on October 2, hoping that the floodwater with recede from the campus by that time.
 arrow Kidnap bid: 2 Chhatra Dal, 2 BCL men held
Two Chhatra Dal activists and two Chhatra League activists were caught by people while trying to kidnap a girl from Shannal para village in Sherpur upazila on Sunday.
 arrow Vote for JP for peace, uplift
Jatiya Party (JP) chairman and former president HM Ershad said the government has failed to ensure security of people's life and property and the country's development.
 arrow Token strike by pro-ruling party staff continue
A tense situation is prevailing at Barisal Sher-e-Bangla Medical College Hospital (BSBMCH) as 3rd and 4th class employees aligned with the ruling party continued agitation for recruitment of party supporters
 arrow Satkhira AL protests arrests
Awami League (AL) brought out a procession and held a rally in the town on Monday protesting arrest of the party leaders and activists in Satkhira and other districts.
Culturearrow 'Jatra needs protection and promotion' --Milon Kanti Dey
As the moushum (season) of jatra draws closer, the artistes of this age-old folk theatre form are on their toes.
 arrow 'Documentaries allow me artistic freedom' --Shakoor Majid
TV playwright-director Shakoor Majid is on the move.
 arrow Taj Mahal's 350th anniversary celebration begins
The Taj Mahal in Agra, needs no introduction. World over, visitors flock to this monument which never seems to lose its exquisite charm.
 arrow Art & Soul Gallery inauguration
The inauguration of the Art & Soul Gallery will be held on October 1, at 5.00 pm, says a press release.
Generalarrow Launch Reflect approach to empower marginal people
Speakers at a seminar yesterday called for launching Regenerated Freirean Literacy Through Empowering Community Techniques (Reflect) approach for creating social awareness and empowering the marginalpeople.
 arrow Distribution of cheques begins today
Ministry of Environment and Forest will begin distribution of cheques among the beneficiaries of the participatory afforestation programme under Tangail Forest Range today.
 arrow 'Self-motivated teachers can help improve quality of edn'
Self-motivated teachers can help enhance the quality of primary education, a Japanese expert said yesterday.
 arrow Garment workers submit memo to prime minister
Bangladesh Garment Workers Unity Council submitted a memorandum to the prime minister yesterday demanding effective steps to face challenges in the aftermath of phasing out of quota facilities.
 arrow Indian envoy meets DU VC
Indian High Commissioner Veena Sikri paid a courtesy call on Dhaka University Vice-chancellor Prof SMA Faiz at the latter's office in the city yesterday.
 arrow Loan defaulter held in Rajshahi
Police yesterday held a businessman for defaulting a loan with the local branch of IFIC Bank for nearly 18 years.
 arrow Nepalese envoy visits Gono Biswabidyalaya
Nepalese Ambassador Bhagirath Basnet visited Gono Biswabidyalaya (GB) at Savar on Monday, says a press release.
 arrow Sahityabisharad's death anniversary today
Today is the 51 st death anniversary of Abdul Karim Sahityabisharad, says a press release.

On the occasion, Bangla Academy will organise a discussion at its seminar room at 11:00am.

 arrow GP donates microbus to school
GrameenPhone Ltd. donated a microbus to the Society for the Welfare of Autistic Children (SWAC) recently, says a press release.
 arrow 2,034 more held
Police arrested some 2,034 people including two listed criminals on various charges during their countrywide drive in the last 24 hours ending at 6.00am yesterday.
Internationalarrow Tamil infighting escalates
Tamil Tiger guerrillas and a breakaway faction have clashed again in Sri Lanka's embattled east leaving at least seven people dead, residents and military sources said yesterday.
 arrow US wants more Pak action against al-Qaeda
Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf began a three-day visit to Italy yesterday during which he was expected to discuss global terrorism and meet Pope John Paul II.
 arrow N Korea has nuclear deterrent: Minister
North Korea says it has turned the plutonium from 8,000 spent nuclear fuel rods into nuclear weapons to serve as a deterrent against increasing US nuclear threats and to prevent a nuclear war in northeast
 arrow 'Progress on rebuilding Iraq discouraging'
Iraq's interim planning minister Mehdi Hafez said yesterday that an international drive to rebuild his war-shattered country has been discouraging because billions of dollars pledged in October have not
 arrow Shah suggests Kashmir committee headed by Vajpayee
Senior separatist leader Shabir Ahmed Shah yesterday suggested setting up of a Kashmir committee headed by former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee to frame a policy and build consensus in the country
 arrow Trial ordered in Florida e-ballot lawsuit
Just five weeks before Election Day, a federal appeals court Monday revived a lawsuit demanding that all Florida voters who use touchscreen machines receive a paper receipt, in case a recount becomesnecessary.
 arrow US asks Taiwan not to fuel tensions with China
The United States delivered a soft rebuke to Taiwan on Monday, telling it and China not to fuel cross-strait tension after Taiwanese Premier Yu Shyi-kun threatened massive retaliation for any Chineseattack
 arrow Bush sharpens jabs against Kerry
President George W.
 arrow US perception of terror threat down: Survey
Three years after the Sept. 11 attacks, Americans are feeling less vulnerable while remaining determined to fight terrorism, according to a survey released yesterday.
Editorialarrow Editorial: HSC results food for thought
This year's results of Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) Examinations have some positive features. With 47.
 arrow Editorial: Basila tragedy
The assurance of the shipping minister that legal action would be taken against the brick kiln owners responsible for creating impediments to the natural flow of the river causing unmitigated sufferings
 arrow How not to win friends and influence people
"Someone must have been spreading lies about Josef K., for without having done anything wrong he was arrested one morning." So begins The Trial by Franz Kafka.

Joseph K was lucky.

 arrow The UN at crossroads
The 59th session of the UN General Assembly opened on 14th September under the Presidency of Gabon.
 arrow Musharraf's 'uniform' issue sparks off new debate
The issue centring the "uniform" of Pakistan's president General Pervez Musharraf is taking a new turn after the strongman appears reneging on his earlier promise that he would relinquish the position
Letters to Editorarrow Names in Bangladesh!
I note we have a propensity to name 'elite' teams (both in sports and law enforcement) after rodents, reptiles and cat-family members. I suggest it is high time we gave the plant kingdom their chance.
 arrow Subway or sky train for Dhaka
Dhaka is reeling under horrendous, stressful, unbelievable and ever-growing traffic jam. It takes more than one hour to reach Motijheel from Gulshan.
 arrow Three cheers for rickshaw!
Small is beautiful! Our pedalled cycle rickshaws and rickshaw vans have beaten the scientists and proved its versatility during the 4-day 600 mm (24-inch) rain spell in Dhaka recently (note the photos
 arrow Indian diplomacy and Bangladesh
Most of the Indian government leaders and civil servants have been very gently, politely, diplomatically, mildly, courteously and humbly telling, advising, pleading and requesting us and our various governments
 arrow Ladybird
I saw a small beetle walking on the green leaves of a pinkish-red camellia (Camellia japonica 'Kumasaka') in my room.
 arrow Khulna city
I do fully agree that despite being a divisional town and so called 3rd city of Bangladesh, Khulna is still lagging behind in all amenities that should have been there for a city like it.
 arrow Bangladesh should look East
This is in response to the article titled 'For friendship Bangladesh should look East' written by Dr. Fakhruddin Ahmed (DS September 12, 2004).

I thank Mr. Ahmed .

 arrow Effective hospital services management
The ad of Apollo Hospital for recruitment of maintenance manpower (16-09-04, the Daily Star) attracted my attention! The ad has noted all required manpower for better management of an internationalstandard
 arrow Wari Cemetery: An update
In the recent six-day incessant rain and strong winds, 15 large trees were uprooted in the Wari Christian Cemetery and also a large number of Mahogany trees are bent out of shape due to the winds.
 arrow Equality law
I consider myself moderately right-winged. Even then I wish to see the government take step in creating an "equality law".
 arrow Attack on DUTA president's office
I'm condemning the attack on the DUTA president, Dr. AAMS Arefin Siddiqe, and the procession brought out by the BCL and five left-learning student organisations .
 arrow Police and bribe
The people of all classes of our society have a very common belief that the police take bribe illegally.
 arrow Voters losing faith
I agree in principle with your commentary (DS Sept 18), and feel that millions of citizens eagerly waited to listen to a discussion on the 21/8 carnage in the parliament.
 arrow Ineffectual politics
Our politicians are running the campus culture, damaging the future lives of the new generation who would be running the country in the coming decades.
 arrow Whither Bangladesh?
In The Daily Star of Sept 12, there were three interesting articles.
 arrow Interacting with neighbours
The decision of allowing double entry visa by Bangladesh to Indian citizens as recommended the home-secretary level meeting, that concluded on Sept 17, 2004, is definitely a milestone in cementingthe
StarTecharrow National ID cards to be issued next year
THE government of Bangladesh has recently approved plans to implement a national identification card system for its citizens.
 arrow Latest mobile technology hits the local market
DAFFODIL Computers Ltd. has launched the new O2 Xphone and the XDA II in its product line.
 arrow Virgin to launch commercial space flights
Airline mogul and adventurer Richard Branson announced plans Monday to boldly go where no private transport company has gone before into space.
 arrow Maxtor Onetouch II raises the bar in consumer backup
SIMPLE, safe and powerful describe the new Maxtor OneTouch(TM) II drive, the next generation of Maxtor Corporation's award-winning external drive family that allows consumers to easily back up familyphotos,
Star Chittagongarrow Allocate 100 acres of khas land to each shrimp farm
Frozen foods exporters at a view exchange meeting here recently urged Commerce Minister Altaf Hossain Choudhury to allocate 100 acres of khas land to each shrimp farm according
 arrow From bridal party to disability
The tragic tale of a bus accident that had claimed 26 lives here on September 15 didn't end as it wreaks havoc on the life and fate of survivors languishing at Chittagong Medical College Hospital (CMCH).
 arrow Repression on Women Protested

Star Cityarrow Double peril when cops violate law
Violating the law, Dhanmondi police kept a man in their custody for four days before producing him in court yesterday.
 arrow Rough ride to the east
The eastern part of Dhaka remains almost cut off from the rest of the metropolis in absence of bus services leaving thousands of commuters in great trouble.
 arrow Price spiral again
As the Ramadan comes, consumers and policymakers are once again worried about a possible price hike although market sources say there is no dearth of supply to cause any market volatility.
 arrow A rare species of pied-hornbill....

 arrow Karwan Bazar underpass being renovated
The Dhaka City corporation (DCC) has started renovation work of the Karwan Bazar underpass from this month.
 arrow Vat pushes up piracy
Imposition of Value Added Tax (VAT) on books has led to the growth of pirated books as the National Board of Revenue (NBR) is not allowing importers to release books from the customs without paying the
 arrow Buffets usher in a new trend
A buffet lunch or dinner is no longer a luxury enjoyed by the elite of the city only. Over the last decade or so, it has become a trendy and affordable concept of dining for the middle-class too.