Vol. 5 Num 212 Sun. December 26, 2004    
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Today's Index
Front Pagearrow Free textbooks on sale
Textbooks for primary level for the academic year 2005 for distribution among students free of cost have reached the market for sale before reaching the students.
 arrow Black day observed at RU, cops clueless
Students and teachers of Rajshahi University (RU) yesterday observed 'black day' to protest the murder of Prof Muhammad Yunus that caused panic among the RU teachers.
 arrow Bangladeshi workers denied rights in Saudi Arabia
At least half a dozen large companies in Saudi Arabia are exploiting workers from Bangladesh and other poor countries, according to findings of the Ministry of Expatriate Welfare and Overseas Employment.
 arrow Christmas celebrated
The Christians of the country celebrated Christmas yesterday with due religious enthusiasm, as elsewhere in the world.
 arrow Knit exporters wary of Indian challenge
Knitwear exporters fear stiffer competition from the Indians than the Chinese in the quota-free era, as they (Indians) are in an advantageous position having strong backward linkage supports and competitive
 arrow AL wings enforce hartal today
The main opposition Awami League's (AL) front organisations Awami Jubo League and Bangladesh Krishak League today enforce a dawn-to-dusk hartal across the country protesting price hike of diesel and kerosene.
 arrow Grameen Bank wants urban operations
The government is working on a proposal to amend the Grameen Bank Ordinance, 1983 allowing the bank to expand operations beyond the rural areas.
 arrow Starship factory in Ctg gutted in fire
A raging blaze yesterday burnt down the main installation of Starship Company, one of the country's leading powdered and condensed milk and other food products manufacturing companies, in the port city.
 arrow Fake green groups blackmail industries
Certain groups of people posing as environmentalists are making a quick buck by blackmailing industrialists whose establishments are polluting the environment.
 arrow 'Arms dealer', outlaw killed in 'crossfire'
A shoe factory owner was killed in an alleged crossfire between the special detective police force Cheetah and his associates at Lalbagh in the capital while a regional leader of outlawed Purbo Banglar
 arrow 13 Iraqis killed on Christmas Day
At least 13 Iraqis were killed in a string of Christmas Day shootings and bombings, as US President George W Bush thanked American soldiers for their sacrifice and for protecting America.
 arrow Tigers play their 100th ODI today
Fresh from an impressive performance in Chittagong, Bangladesh will play their hundredth one-day international today when they face India in the second game of the three-match series.
 arrow AL, allies to hold rallies, meetings for Dec 30 human wall
The main opposition Awami League (AL) and its allies will start a campaign from today to mobilise people to show 'no-confidence' in the coalition government through joining the human wall from Sunamganj
 arrow Rare glimpse of the Sun....

 arrow Injured Mahila AL leader sent to Dhaka
The district Mahila Awami League president who suffered serious injuries in Friday's bomb blast at her house was admitted to the National Institute of Traumatology & Orthopaedic Rehabilitation (Nitor)
 arrow No hike in bus fare, for now
Transport owners have decided not to raise the bus fare for the time being despite the hike in the diesel price but may make an upward adjustment in line with the government-fixed fare next year.
 arrow 5 die in road accidents
Five people died and 30 others were injured in two road accidents in Narayanganj and Rajbari yesterday.
 arrow No-one is safe in country
Leader of the Opposition Sheikh Hasina yesterday alleged that the ruling alliance-backed criminals have turned the country into a 'valley of death, where nobody is safe'.
 arrow BNP finalises grassroots meetings
The ruling Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) has finalised the venues and other necessary preparations to hold conferences of grassroots leaders and activists on the basis of an 18-point agenda.
 arrow Space probe begins descent to Saturn Moon Titan
A European-designed space probe broke away from its NASA mothership on Friday on a plunge toward the mysterious Saturn moon Titan, starting a journey researchers hope will end with answers about one of
 arrow Waiting for breakfast...

Businessarrow Real estate fair attracts huge crowd
In search of a permanent address in Dhaka, people kept on flocking to the real estate fair for the third consecutive day yesterday.
 arrow Developers homing in on the middle class
With demands for high-priced spacious apartments dying out, country's real estate companies are now taking a major marketing shift to constructing small-sized flats to reach out to the middle class customers.
 arrow Turkey sets quotas against Chinese textile imports
Turkey has decided to impose textile quotas to protect its large domestic industry against an onslaught of cheap Chinese textile and apparel imports.
 arrow Transcom Beverages opens new plant in Gazipur
Transcom Beverages Ltd, the authorised franchisee of soft drink brand Pepsi in Bangladesh, has opened a new beverage plant at Mouchak in Gazipur on Wednesday.
 arrow Long-term rates pivotal for world economy
Cheap long-term borrowing provided the glue that held the world economy together this year, but the risk of its sudden disappearance could see an otherwise upbeat outlook for 2005 come unstuck.
 arrow India struggles with patent reforms
In a dingy, poorly lit corridor in a government building, dozens of foreign visitors have been making rounds of offices, escorted by men and women wearing the black, tuxedo-like robes of Indian lawyers.
 arrow Euro jumps to new record against unravelling dollar
The euro hit a new record Friday against the unravelling dollar, surging to 1.3549, with some analysts seeing 1.40 dollars as a potential trigger level for European Central Bank intervention.
 arrow NSB links up with Indian ICICI Infotech
The National Savings Bank owning and managing over 180 billion portfolios (through their Asset Management Department) recently linked up with the Indian giant in the field of software, ICICI Infotech.
 arrow Iraq wants new bids to develop oil field
Iraq's oil ministry has called for new bids to develop an oil field in the war-torn country, blindsiding the Canadian company that appeared to have won the contract, a top executive with the firm said
 arrow Weak dollar lures travellers to US
A weaker U.S. dollar is fueling pent-up demand for overseas travel to the United States, helping to pad the bottom lines of hotels and tourist attractions.
 arrow GMG starts Dhaka-Kolkata flights Dec 31
GMG Airlines is going to start its second international flights from December 31, 2004.
 arrow Saiham Textile declares 7pc dividend
Saiham Textile Mills Ltd has declared a 7 percent dividend for the shareholders at of the company for the year 2003-04.
 arrow Anlima Yarn Dyeing okays 5pc dividend
Anlima Yarn Dyeing Limited declared 5 percent dividend for its shareholders for the year 2003-04.
 arrow Pakistan index ends over 6,000 for first time
Pakistani stocks extended their bull run on Friday, closing above 6,000 points for the first time on optimism about the country's economy, dealers said.
 arrow Reliance board meeting to set tone for Indian shares next week
A board meeting of Reliance Industries, the flagship company of India's largest private sector group, will set the tone for the stock market next week, dealers said Friday.
 arrow Indonesia needs $75b to raise growth: Minister
Indonesia needs 75 billion dollars, most of it from foreign investment, to fulfil its goal of increasing growth over the next five years, Economics Minister Aburizal Bakrie said Friday.
 arrow G7 finance ministers to meet in Feb in London
Finance ministers from the Group of Seven rich countries club will meet in London on Feb. 4 and 5 for their first regular meeting under Britain's presidency, the UK Treasury said on Friday.
 arrow Kuwait declares billion-dollar holiday island project
Kuwait is seeking investors for a multi-billion-dollar project to turn an island off its coast into a major tourist attraction, a government official said Saturday.
 arrow China plans new law to ease energy strain
China's legislature yesterday began considering a draft law on developing renewable energy to combat chronic power shortage, state media said Saturday.
 arrow Euronext may lack power in race to win LSE: Analysis
Euronext will likely be the first to falter in a race with Deutsche Boerse to buy the London Stock Exchange (LSE), as the German exchange has more cash and appears determined to win.
 arrow ACP countries back Mauritius minister for top WTO post
African, Caribbean and Pacific nations are backing Mauritius Foreign Minister Jayen Cuttaree to be the next director general of the World Trade Organisation, Jamaican Foreign Minister Keith Desmond Knight
 arrow Oil prices fall ahead of Christmas break
Oil prices fell on Friday in thin trading as dealers prepared for a long Christmas holiday weekend.
In London, Brent North Sea crude for February closed down 61 cents to 40.10 dollars.

Sportsarrow Cricket: Bashar being realistic
When the second one-day international between Bangladesh and India begins at the Bangabandhu National Stadium today, it will be the 100th appearance for the Tigers in the abridged version of the game.
 arrow Cricket: Giant slips
Upset was the or-der in the Green Delta Premier Cricket League on Saturday when two popular giants Moha-mmedan Spor-ting Club and Abahani Krira Chakra bit the dust while Brothers Union came a cropperin
 arrow Cricket: MCG Test starts today
Pakistan captain Inzamamul Haq has ruled himself out of the second Test against Australia starting on Sunday due to a back injury.
"I have been advised to rest for three weeks by doctors.

 arrow Cricket: First NZ-SL ODI today
New Zealand will hope to take advantage of Sri Lanka's lack of preparation when they meet in the first match of the 5-game one-day international series in Auckland on Sunday.
 arrow Cricket: Bhaji not worried
India off-spinner Harbhajan Singh said that he was not at all worried about his 'doosra' being reported to the International Cricket Council (ICC).
 arrow Cricket: Lara to lead Windies in Australia
Brian Lara will head a West Indies 14-man squad for a triangular one-day international tournament against hosts Australia and Pakistan starting next month.
 arrow Hockey: Ordinary MSC win
Title aspirants Mohammedan Sporting Club managed a solitary goal victory over Sonali Bank in the Green Delta Premier Division Hockey League at the Maulana Bhasani National Stadium yesterday.
 arrow Chess: Aminul leader
FIDE Master Khandokar Aminul Islam maintained his solo lead in the Seventh Prime Bank International Rating Chess after the end of the eighth round at the federation hall room yesterday.
 arrow Chess: Parag in 2nd spot
Mehdi Hasan Parag was in the second position in the 27th Asian Junior Chess Championship after the end of the sixth round in Rajstan yesterday.
 arrow Cricket: Second Test from today
Steve Harmison barely contributed to England's first Test win over South Africa but Graeme Smith may be more worried about the strike bowler's form than Michael Vaughan.
 arrow Cricket: 'Have patience'
Former cricket great Zaheer Abbas Saturday advised Pakistani batsmen to exercise patience at the crease and frustrate the Australian bowlers during the second Test in Melbourne starting on Sunday.
 arrow Football: Mourinho expects no Xmas gifts
Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho takes his Premiership leaders into the busy holiday schedule insisting the Christmas football period "means nothing to him".
 arrow Football: Casillas fears the worst
Real Madrid goalkeeper Iker Casillas says another slip-up will end the former European champions' hopes of winning the Spanish league title.
 arrow Football: Barca rising
Not even the fans of their bitter rivals Real Madrid could argue with the fact that most of the plaudits for the 2004 calendar year belong to Barcelona.
 arrow Cricket: Easy win for Eskaton
Eskaton Sabuj Sangha registered their third victory in the First Division Cricket League when they handed a 46-run defeat on Prantik Krira Chakra at BKSP yesterday.
 arrow Cricket: Magura cricket
Renesa Sporting Club clinched the Abul Hossain Smriti Cricket Tournament title defeating Satdoha Sporting Club by 11 runs at the Magura Nomani maidan yesterday.
 arrow Football: Matthaeus now praises Klinsmann
Hungary coach Lothar Matthaeus believes Juergen Klinsmann, who he described as a "killer" in October, has done a great job in his first five months in charge of the Germany team.
 arrow Football: Sarfraz blows the whistle again
Former Pakistani Test star Sarfraz Nawaz said Saturday that match fixing was still rife in his homeland, sparking a sharp retort from national coach Bob Woolmer of the eve of the second Test against Australia.
Metropolitanarrow Tributes paid to Benin air crash victims
Speakers at a meeting yesterday paid tribute to the memory of 15 Bangladesh Army officers, killed in an air crash in the West African country of Benin a year ago.
 arrow Domestic help beaten,fights for life at DMCH
A domestic help, beaten mercilessly by a young couple over a trifling matter, is fighting for life at Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH).
 arrow Killing of RU teacher condemned
Different organisations yesterday condemned and protested the killing of Rajshahi University (RU) teacher.
 arrow Family members on the run fearing attacks
Family members of slain headmistress of the Siddheshwari Girls' High School are on the run fearing attacks by the killers who are roaming scot-free.
 arrow Reaz, Shawkat re-elected JPC president, secy
Reazuddin Ahmed and Shawkat Mahmud have been re-elected president and general secretary of the Jatiya Press Club (JPC) for 2005-2006.
The election was held on Friday at the JPC auditorium.

 arrow Mannan elected Gulshan Club president
SM Abdul Mannan has been elected president of Gulshan Club for 2005, says a press release.
 arrow 6th National Cub Camporee begins
The week-long 6th National Cub Camporee began at Mouchak National Scout Training Centre in Gazipur yesterday.
 arrow Obituary
Alpana Mumtaz, a renowned dance artist and choreographer, died of a cardiac arrest at a hospital in the city yesterday at the age of 57, says a press release.
Nationalarrow Authorities unmoved despite people's agitation
Work on the Tk 114 crore Sylhet town protection project is suspended for two years due to alleged bureaucratic tangles while the concrete blocks piled up for the project are being pilfered.
 arrow Fanfare marks opening of Zainul Festival
The five-day Zainul Festival marking the 90th birth anniversary of Shilpacharya Zainul Abedin began on the premises of Zainul Abedin Sangrahashala (gallery) here yesterday with great fanfare.
 arrow A beauty spot turning into garbage bin
The Shokuni Lake, once a beauty of Madaripur town, is turning into a virtual garbage bin due to lack of proper maintenance.
 arrow Dhaka-Agartala bus service faces closure
The Dhaka-Agartala bus service through Akhaura faces closure due to sharp fall in passengers, according to Liaison Officer of Tripura Road Transport Corporation (TRTC) BRN Bhoumik at Akhaura check post.
 arrow Newsman arrested without warrant
A journalist has been arrested here without any warrant of arrest on December 23 night, according to family sources.
 arrow Fake Rab member caught by people
A fake member of Rab (Rapid Action Battalion) was caught by people on Thursday.
They were handed over to Kalapara police.
The cheat is Sohag, 26, of Golbunia village in Galachipa upazila.

 arrow Workshop on gender issues held
A day-long workshop on 'Gender, Health and Equality' organised by the District Information Office was held at Nasirnagar upazila auditorium on Thursday.
 arrow 3-day children's fair concludes
A 3-day children's fair jointly organised by Shisu Academy and district administration concluded at 'Shawdhinata' (independence) square here on Thursday.
Over 50 stalls were set up at the fair.

 arrow Asaduzzaman's 11th death anniversary observed
The eleventh death anniversary of Liberation War organiser and former lawmaker Advocate Asaduzzaman was observed here befittingly yesterday.
 arrow Gangni municipal polls tomorrow
The by-election to the post of chairman Gangni municipality will be held tomorrow.
 arrow Price hike of kerosene, diesel criticised
Communist Party of Bangladesh (CPB) leaders here on Friday slated sudden price-hike of kerosene and diesel in the district.
Point-Counterpointarrow Love's labour's lost
It's the name of a Shakespearean comedy, as readers know. But the drama that had been unfolding for the last few weeks in the British political arena has little to do with comedy as such.
Culturearrow Seminar on Shilpacharya
Aseminar on Shilpacharya Zainul Abedin was held at the Experimental Theatre Hall on December 24 as part of the ongoing celebration of the artist's 90th birth anniversary.
 arrow 'Theatre Art Unit has taken up a challenge' --Mamunur Rashid
Aranyak Natya Dal is staging Shonkranti in the drama festival arranged by Theatre Art Unit.
 arrow Musical soiree of Shudhin Das
Nazrul Institute organised a special musical programme by veteran Nazrul exponent Shudhin Das recently.
 arrow Sangkranti: Depicting the plight of village artistes
Arannyak Natyada's Sangkranti, the last production of the ongoing drama festival arranged by Theatre Art Unit, portrays the realistic scenario of the plight of village artistes known as Shang,living
 arrow 'We practice humane theatre,' Dolly Basu
Dolly Basu, an eminent theatre personality of India, has come to Dhaka for the second time to participate in the drama festival arranged by Theatre Art Unit.
Internationalarrow Abbas begins election campaign
PLO chief Mahmud Abbas began his campaign Saturday to become president of the Palestinian Authority with a one-minute silence for the late Yasser Arafat.
 arrow Christmas hopes for Middle East
Amid conflict and violence, persecution and fear of terrorist attack, much of the world paused Saturday to celebrate the birth of the man that Christians worship as the Prince of Peace.
 arrow Ukraine court rules electoral change unconstitutional
Ukraine's constitutional court ruled Saturday that a part of recently adopted electoral changes violated voters' rights in a decision it said would smooth the running of a historic rerun presidentialvote.
 arrow Nepal blockade enters third day
Nepal's government invoked anti-hoarding and price control laws to stem rises in food and fuel prices as a Maoist blockade of the capital entered a third day, state-run radio announced Saturday.
 arrow Bam remembers quake victims
A year after one of the worst earthquakes in modern history, residents of the Iranian city of Bam paid their final respects Saturday to the 30,000 dead and bring an end to the traditional 12 months of
 arrow 138 insurgents surrender in Tripura
As many as 138 insurgents of the National Liberation Front of Tripura (NLFT-Nayanbasi group) on Saturday surrendered before Governor DN Sahaya.
 arrow Hamas scores successes in Palestinian election
Hamas Islamic militants scored significant successes in Palestinian municipal elections, the first contested by the group sworn to Israel's destruction, initial results showed on Friday.
 arrow N Korea will not invade S Korea: Kim Jong-Il
North Korean leader Kim Jong-Il has declared his state has no plan to invade South Korea, and that instead a reverse threat existed, Radio Pyongyang said Saturday.
 arrow Pope prays for peace in troubled world
Pope John Paul led the world's one billion Roman Catholics into Christmas Day and said the troubled world needed the message of Jesus more than ever, braving Parkinson's Disease to deliver his sermon.
Editorialarrow Editorial: An attack on progressive thinking
We share the nation's profound shock and outrage at the brutal murder of Professor Muhammad Yunus, a distinguished teacher of Rajshahi University and a progressive-minded academic.
 arrow Editorial: Welcoming migratory birds
To those bird lovers, who were at the Ceramic Lake in Mirpur last Friday welcoming the guest birds of the season, it must have been an unforgettable experience.
 arrow Palestine-Israel dispute: Can Britain break the logjam?
Following the latest visit of the British Prime Minister Tony Blair to Palestine and Israel, it is Britain which has entered the minefield that is the Middle East dispute.
 arrow Vision of governance
Like most other countries, Bangladesh has its own value system and social structure which exert influence on governance.
Letters to Editorarrow Why Rab
In response to Firoz Mannan's letter published on December 16, I would first like to say, first of all, if our country has only one policeman against every 10,000, then I am afraid RAB is not needed,but
 arrow Reform the Caretaker Government Law
I have been following with great interest the debate initiated on the above subject by Honourable MP, Shah AMS Kibria.
 arrow Computer mela: Some thoughts of a visitor
At the entrance of the computer mela at Novo Theatre, I noticed that some visitors got the tickets of the computer mela by mistake.
 arrow A deadly option?
US Dollar replaced Gold as medium of exchange over five decades ago and precious commodities like oil, metals, food and foreign trades are done in US Dollars.
Star Healtharrow Fistula: agonies and aftermath
Fifteen years old Kazol Rehka married for three years has been suffering from extreme pains in her ruptured uterus and the vaginal passage she suffered during childbirth for over a year now.
 arrow Heart valve replacement could bring dramatic changes in cardiology -- Dr Seth
The Daily Star spoke to Dr Ashok Seth, Chairman and Chief Cardiologist of Max Devki Devi Heart and Vascular Institute of New Delhi, India during his recent visit to Bangladesh on invitation of the Bangladesh
 arrow Research initiative on the impact of climate change on health
ICDDR,B has a new research initiative on the 'Impact of Climate Change on Health'.
 arrow New tobacco advertising laws come into effect in Britain
New controls on tobacco advertising came into effect in Britain on Tuesday last, the latest step in a government campaign against smoking.
 arrow Drinking causes gout!
Drinking causes gout. But if you must drink alcohol, drink wine, scientists say.
Star Cityarrow Being at ease with X'mas
"Christmas won't be Christmas without peace in our hearts," a slight deviation from Jo's saying in Little Women. Look around and one will find it is true.
 arrow Slum dwellers to swell to 10m in five years
The number of slum dwellers in Dhaka city will cross 10 million in the next five years as the rural poor are continuously pouring into capital, according to official statistics.
 arrow BRTC bans hydraulic horns
The Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation (BRTC) has decided to ban use of pneumatic horns also known as hydraulic horns in buses under its fleet from this month to protect the city from noise pollution.
 arrow Scientists oppose move to shift BAEC from DU
The government decision to hand over all the property of Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission (BAEC) and the Atomic Energy Centre, Dhaka (AECD) to Dhaka University has sparked resentment among the scientists
 arrow Thieves on the prowl for rickshaws
Rickshaw-puller Rafiq was in Mohammadpur area one morning when a policeman in uniform boarded his rickshaw for going to Sobhanbag.
 arrow Wonderland loses giant fish
The authorities of Wonderland Park in Gulshan have failed in their bid to preserve a whale shark and had to bury it after keeping it in a pool for 6 days.
The 33 feet long whale shark weighing 5.