Vol. 5 Num 612 Fri. February 17, 2006    
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Today's Index
Front Pagearrow Mercury goes up at JS over power crisis
Both the ruling alliance and opposition members in parliament yesterday poured out their anger over shortage of power, which, they said, has been severely hampering irrigation across the country.
 arrow BB goes soft on loan defaulters before polls
Ahead of the general elections and contrary to its much-professed contractionary monetary policy, the central bank yesterday removed the bar on loan defaulters who have rescheduled their loans from getting
 arrow Govt bans toxic ship's entering Bangladesh
The government has decided not to allow the asbestos-lined ocean liner SS Norway to enter Bangladesh territory in the wake of newspaper reports and protests by environmentalists.
 arrow McKinnon pins hope on caretaker system
Appreciating the caretaker system in Bangladesh, Commonwealth Secretary General Donald C McKinnon expressed his confidence that this interim arrangement will also bring success in the future polls asin
 arrow Nominate the honest as candidates for polls
Speakers at a discussion yesterday called on the political parties to nominate honest candidates for parliamentary election.
 arrow BNP says no to all AL demands for discussion
The ruling BNP yesterday rejected all the demands placed by the main opposition Awami League (AL) for holding discussion in parliament on various burning issues like serial bomb blasts, price hike ofessentials,
 arrow Shoddy rehab centres feeding on addiction
With drug addiction spreading like wildfire in the society, its 'treatment' too has proved a money-spinning venture to many.
 arrow RMG export thrives on knitwear boost
Knitwear's impressive performance helped overall apparel export grow about 11 percent in the very first year of quota phaseout despite fears at home and abroad that Bangladesh might face a major setback
 arrow BPC to borrow $250m from private sector
The government yesterday approved a proposal of the Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC) to import fuel by borrowing $250 million from Standard Chartered Bank at a cost of 14.73 percent.
 arrow Better ties with donors stressed to cut poverty
Eminent economists, civil society members, business leaders and development partners at a roundtable in the city yesterday stressed a broader and deeper partnership between Bangladesh and its development
 arrow Farmers forced to pay extra money for diesel
Misery of the boro farmers due to the unavailability and high price of diesel continues in the northern districts even after the government withdrew its decision to increase diesel price on Wednesday.
 arrow 9 killed, 29 hurt in Sylhet lightning
Nine labourers of a stone quarry were killed and 29 others injured as they were struck by lightning at Companyganj upazila in Sunamganj early yesterday.
 arrow Dollar price hits new high
The price-curve of US dollar continued its sharp rise yesterday hitting Tk 70.49 in case of import, posting a hike of Tk 0.34 in one day and Tk 0.54 over the last week.
 arrow SC rejects judge Chunnu's plea for stay on HC's no-work order
The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday rejected Dhaka Divisional Special Judge Rezaul Karim Khan Chunnu's petition for a stay of the High Court's (HC) injunction restraining him from discharging judicial functions
 arrow All 5 accused acquitted in journo Dilip murder case
The Speedy Trial Tribunal, Khulna, has acquitted all the five charge-sheeted accused in Journalist Mir Elias Hossain Dilip murder case.
 arrow 2 journalists hurt in bomb attack
Unknown miscreants hurled bombs injuring two journalists in Palashpara of Chuadanga town while a gang hurled three bombs at Pirpurgoraghat of Chuadanga Sadar upazila yesterday.
 arrow Raj Punnah festival from today
The folk fair that accompany the traditional Raj Punnah festival will not be held this year due to the prevailing law and order situation of the country, sources said.
 arrow Railway cancels 16 train services as it lacks fund to buy diesel
Bangladesh Railway (BR) yesterday cancelled 16 train services through different routes in the eastern zone for indefinite period as it faces an acute fund crisis to buy high-priced diesel for its locomotives.
 arrow US House votes to withhold aid
The House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly Wednesday to withhold direct US foreign aid from the Palestinian Authority unless Hamas revokes its call for the destruction of Israel.
 arrow UN calls for Guantanamo closure
The United States must shut down its detention centre at Guantanamo Bay "without further delay", a UN human rights report published Thursday said, urging Washington to try or release more than 500 terrorism
 arrow Second power unit goes into trial production
The Barapukuria 250 MW power plant went into trial production last Wednesday with its second unit contributing 110 MW of electricity to the national power grid.
 arrow Joseph Crowley due Feb 21
US Congressman Joseph F Crowley, co-chair of congressional Bangladeshi Caucus, will arrive in the city on February 21 on a three-day unofficial visit.
 arrow Water woes at Gabtoli colony
Hundreds of families are now living under severe crisis of water at Gabtoli Faruk Colony near the city protection embankment as water of the 26 shallow tube-wells in the area emits foul odour.
 arrow Pakistan ratifies Safta deal
The Pakistani cabinet Wednesday approved a regional pact to promote free trade and economic ties in South Asia, home to nearly one-fifth of the world's population.
Businessarrow Exports grow 15pc in six months
The country's overall exports grew US$ 642.79 million, or 15 percent, in the first six months of the current financial year, thanks to major contribution of knitwear and woven products.
 arrow Warid plans rapid launch of better cellphone services
Warid Telecom is ready to face competition and will offer high quality cellphone services at affordable cost across Bangladesh within one year.
 arrow Corrugated carton, accessory products show kicks off
A four-day international exhibition of corrugated carton and accessory products began yesterday in Dhaka with an aim to introduce businessmen to the latest technologies and products of the sector.
 arrow BGMEA urges govt to introduce licensing system for freight forwarders
Bangladesh Garment Manu-factures and Exporters Association (BGMEA) yesterday urged the government to introduce licensing system for freight forwarding agents allowing them to carry out documentation works.
 arrow Regulators' role vital to ensure corporate governance
Speakers at a roundtable yesterday put emphasis on collaboration among the regulators of the financial sector to establish corporate governance in corporate houses.
 arrow MBA Club's 4th interactive business meet Sunday
MBA Club Ltd in Bangladesh as part of its new project -- sharing of knowledge by current business and community leaders with young professionals -- will hold its fourth session at 6:30pm on Sunday onclub
 arrow Lankan govt officials receive training at FIMA
Fifteen officials of the Auditor General's Department of Sri Lanka attended a 20-day training programme, which concluded yesterday, at the Financial Management Academy (FIMA), says a press release.
 arrow Pressure to worsen Sino-US trade tussle
China said Thursday that threats or sanctions from the United States would only fuel bilateral trade problems, following renewed pressure from Washington over its massive trade deficit.
 arrow Oil prices stage modest bounce
Oil prices staged a modest bounce in Asian trade Thursday after healthy US inventories led to a heavy sell-off in New York, dealers said At 11:30 am (0330 GMT), New York's main contract, light sweet
 arrow US firms in China flourishing despite trade dispute
US companies in China are flourishing, with more making profits despite ongoing bilateral trade disputes, according to an American Chamber of Commerce survey released here Thursday.
Sportsarrow Cricket: Sri Lanka arrive today
GrameenPhone will provide Tk 65 lakh to the Bangla-desh Cricket Board (BCB) as sponsors of the Bangladesh-Sri Lanka cricket series which will now start from February 20 with a day-night one-day international
 arrow Cricket: Pressure mounts on Dhaka
Rajshahi and Chittagong consolidated their positions on the opening day of their home matches but visiting Sylhet took command away in Khulna in the fifth round of the Ispahani Seventh National Cricket
 arrow Cricket: India trounce Pakistan to take one-day series
Rahul Dravid hit a patient half-century and paceman Rudra Pratap Singh grabbed four wickets as India trounced Pakistan by five wickets in the fourth one-day match on Thursday.
 arrow Cricket: 'Bowl-off' win for Kiwis
New Zealand beat the West Indies 3-0 in international cricket's first ever bowl-off after their series opener Twenty20 match ended with the scores tied at 126 each here Thursday.
 arrow Cricket: Tigers rest for a day
The national cricketers enjoyed a rest day in Bogra yesterday in their preparation for the two one-day internationals against Sri Lanka.
 arrow Chess: Eva still atop
Nazrana Khan Eva stayed on top of the table after the seventh round of the Camellia 27th national Women's Chess Championship yesterday.
 arrow Football: Cruciani's boys to warm up against Navy
Bangladesh national football team will play a warm-up match against Bangladesh Navy today as part of their preparation for the Asian Cup qualifier against Uzbekistan.
 arrow Cricket: Jayawardene SL skipper in Bangladesh
Mahela Jayawardene will captain Sri Lanka on the upcoming tour of Bangladesh after the selectors rested regular skipper Marvan Atapattu and his deputy Chaminda Vaas, Sri Lanka Cricket said on Thursday.
 arrow Cricket: Dhaka cricket fans protest
Cricket fans of the capital yesterday protested the decision to not hold any match during the coming Bangladesh-Sri Lanka series in Dhaka.
 arrow Football: Roma take form to Europe
AS Roma, the team of the moment in Italy, demonstrated their European pedigree with a battling 2-1 win at Club Bruges in their UEFA Cup first knockout round first-leg tie on Wednesday.
 arrow Football: Zidane reconfirms retirement plan
France captain Zinedine Zidane confirmed on his internet site Wednesday that he will end his sparkling career in the next 18 months, but first he wants to win the World Cup.
 arrow Football: Eto'o tipped for top award
Cameroon's Samuel Eto'o is strongly fancied to win a record third straight African Footballer of the Year award in Nigeria on Thursday.
 arrow Football: Real now world's wealthiest club
Manchester United have lost their crown at the top of the football money league for the first time in eight years, being replaced at the top by Real Madrid, according to figures published Thursday.
 arrow Cricket: Now Gul out of fifth ODI
Pakistan will be without fast bowler Umar Gul for the fifth and final one-day international against India.
 arrow Cricket: Dhoni in top ten
Sensational Indian wicketkeeper batsman Mahendra Singh Dhoni has broken into top ten of world one-day batting ratings after his whirlwind 46-ball 72 in the Lahore one-dayer against Pakistan on Monday.
 arrow Football: Brazil to play New Zealand
Brazil will play New Zealand in June hoping the experience will help them prepare for their World Cup group game against Australia two weeks later.
 arrow Football: Ranieri intersted in Newcastle job
Former Chelsea manager Claudio Ranieri has said he would like to become the new Newcastle United manager.
Metropolitanarrow EU ready to mediate dialogue between govt, opposition
The European Union (EU), if requested and needed, is ready to mediate between the government and the opposition parties to sit for a constructive dialogue and defuse the tension for creating an election-friendly
 arrow SFP raises enrolment rate by 14.2pc in pry schools
School Feeding Programme (SFP) could be expanded to benefit more children, but care must be taken in selecting the target group, said the speakers at a seminar yesterday.
 arrow 'Ensure accountability in edn sector'
Ruling and opposition party lawmakers yesterday stressed the need for proper and transparent utilisation of resources allocated for the education sector.
 arrow 14.3m euros for Brac
The Netherlands will provide 14.3 million euros to Brac, a leading NGO, to expand its pioneering non-formal education programme for distressed children in the next three and a half years.
 arrow Be more active to face challenges of new trend of crime
Prime Minister Khaleda Zia yesterday urged rank and file of paramilitary BDR to be more active in applying modern technique and strategy with enhanced vigilance to face the challenge of new trend of crime.
 arrow Call to bring masterminds to justice
Asma Kibria, wife of slain former finance minister Shah AMS Kibria, yesterday demanded that the masterminds of the killing of her husband be brought to justice.
 arrow HC too denies OC Rafiq's bail
The High Court (HC) yesterday upheld a lower court verdict that had denied bail to suspended police officer of Motijheel Police Station Rafiqul Islam, the prime accused in a murder case.
 arrow 4 killed in road accidents
At least four people were killed in separate road accidents in Rajshahi and Khagrachhari yesterday.
 arrow Police assault case filed against 4,000 villagers
A police assault case was filed yesterday against 4,000 unnamed people of Patharia and Umednagar villages where two villagers were killed and about 200, including policemen, injured in a bloody clashon
 arrow FNB condemns publication of cartoons on Prophet
Federation of NGOs in Bangladesh (FNB) yesterday condemned and protested the publication of cartoons on Prophet Muhammad (SM) in a Danish newspaper, says a press release.
 arrow Examination of witnesses ends at Barisal tribunal
Examination of the witnesses in a case lodged under explosive acts in connection with the killing of judges in Jhalakati ended at the Barisal Speedy Trial Tribunal yesterday.
 arrow One gets 30 years' RI for keeping heroin
A Dhaka court yesterday sentenced a man to 30 years' rigorous imprisonment for possessing 400 grams of heroin in May 2004.
 arrow 'Formulate consumers' rights act'
The Consumers' Trust (TCT) formed a human chain on the Central Shaheed Minar premises in the city yesterday demanding formulation of consumers' rights protection act and measures to stop production and
 arrow Main canal embankment damaged
A portion of the right embankment of the main irrigation canal under the Teesta Irrigation Project has been damaged, submerging paddy fields in six villages under Jaldhaka and Dimla upazilas.
 arrow Prof Sayeed briefs about his new book
Former information minister Prof Abu Sayeed yesterday said the militants have radiological device and the expertise to make extremely harmful radioactive bombs.
 arrow Publication ceremony Feb 19
The publication ceremony of the book titled 'Dinosaurer Dimta' by Nazia Jabeen will be held at the TSC cafeteria in the city at 4:00pm on February 19, says a press release.
 arrow Listed criminal held in Khulna
Police arrested listed criminal Badsha Shaikh alias Ranga Badsha early yesterday morning from Rupsha Stand Road. Ranga Badsha is wanted in several criminal cases.
 arrow One murdered in Khulna
Police yesterday recovered decomposed body of an unidentified youth from the bank of the river Passur. Police suspected that the criminals killed the young man after abducting him.
Point-Counterpointarrow Welcome decision of the Opposition
After lapse of a year the nation welcomes the Opposition back to the parliament but not yet relieved from the predilection and the threat of resigning in the dying days to dramatise politics in the election
 arrow Silver lining in Sri Lankan impasse?
A silver lining has fortunately emerged in the complex situation in Sri Lanka over the civil war centering the Tamil problem as both the government and the Tamil rebels have agreed to resume their dialogue
 arrow Fear culture gripping the nation?
There is an age-old proverb, '[o]nly certainty in life is to face death'. Death has two dimensions: natural and unnatural. While natural death is certain at old age, unnatural is not.
 arrow The importance of being in the parliament
The author is one of the few politicians in Bangladesh who believes in putting his views on paper and subsequently publishing them as a book. Not that one always agrees with them.
 arrow Team building improves project performance
An effective team building process can bring significant, not simply marginal, improvements in project execution and results.
Culturearrow Weaving a delicate tune of ragas
It was daybreak in Washington DC and Alif Laila was already on her way to meet up with Pandit Partha Chatterjee, from Kolkata. This was sometime around 1988-89 and summer classes were about to begin.
 arrow Nurturing young talent
Imagination, curiosity and a feel for colour--these are the ingredients most child artists have in abundance.
 arrow Ontorjatra to debut in the Int'l Film Festival, Bangladesh
The long awaited Tareque Masud and Catherine Masud's movie Ontorjatra will be released in the 3rd International Film Festival Bangladesh, which will continue from March 1-16.
 arrow The evolution of band music since Independence
Band rock music in Bangladesh embarked on its journey soon after the country's Liberation. Azam Khan, a proud freedom fighter, led the way with his band Uccharan, singing hard-hitting lyrics.
 arrow The world of Yasujiro Ozu
Film buffs can look forward to the upcoming Japanese Film Festival on February 17 and February 18. The festival will be held at the Shaheed Zia Auditorium, Bangladesh National Museum.
 arrow Ekushey cultural programme at Rabindra Sarobar
Besides its ongoing cultural programme to celebrate Ekushey at Central Shaheed Minar premises, Shammilito Sangskritik Jote (SSJ) has arranged another programme of cultural events, including music, recitation
Editorialarrow Editorial: PM's Pakistan visit
There are several reasons why this highest-level bilateral visit to Pakistan can be considered to be meaningful.
 arrow Editorial: Toxic laden ship
It is now reassuring that the minister for environment has told the questionable toxic laden ship shall not be allowed to enter Bangladesh waters.
 arrow Caught in the crossfire of the clash of fundamentalisms
These are tough times to be peaceful, law-abiding Muslim who wishes for nothing more than to be able to practice his or her faith in peace and to live in amity with all.
 arrow Why cartoons animated outrage?
If I am allowed to draw upon my scant knowledge of economics, I would say the recent controversy over the 12 cartoons, which appeared in the Danish daily Jyllands-Posten in September 2005, is a matter
 arrow Free and fair election -- myth or reality
In recent times the policy-makers, obviously by virtue of their numerical strength in the parliament, appear to have been affording themselves unbridled leverage being utterly infatuated.
Letters to Editorarrow Thoughts on Ekushey
On those days ripples of Ekushey were not heart-felt in my sleepy town (bazaar to be precise). My first experience was rather tangential through unauthorised reading of my brother's daily memoir.
 arrow Curtail freedom of speech!
Desecration of the religious icon of Islam can in no way be justified on the pretext of freedom of speech, for freedom of speech is meant for serving the greater interest of mankind.
 arrow Counterproductive Hartal
Yet another hartal. Your editorial in denouncing the hartal was timely and appropriate.
 arrow Corrupt police
The Daily Star in its 15 February issue published two news items against the wrong doing of the police force.
 arrow Statement in parliament
Jamaat-e-Islami lawmaker Abdullah Mohammad demanded immediate withdrawal of the US-led coalition forces from Iraq, and raised a point of order saying, "The United States is an enemy of humanity.
 arrow Let's build an ISLAND!
Yeah I-srael, S-udan, L-ondon, A-merica, N-ablus and finally D-enmark.
 arrow Dr Yunus's roadmap
At the 15th Anniversary celebrations of The Daily Star, Dr.
 arrow Limping BTV
With much regret I am raising this unusual question! But this is the common opinion of the day. Many people have satellite television connections particularly in all towns and cities like Dhaka.
 arrow Political uncertainty
The sun emerges from the unknown cloud in the political sky of Bangladesh. For a long time, there was a great uncertainty in the political arena.
Worldarrow South Asia: Talks will decide war or peace, says LTTE
Talks between Sri Lanka and Tamil Tigers next week will determine if there is peace or war, the rebels said, branding President Mahinda Rajapakse's refusal to consider a separate Tamil homeland as "childish".
 arrow South Asia: UN asks Nepali Maoists to honour HR promises
A UN body called on Nepal's Maoist rebel movement yesterday to ensure its members honour promises by the guerrilla leadership to respect human rights.
 arrow South Asia: Karzai urges Pakistan to hunt down militants
Afghan President Hamid Karzai called on Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf during talks on Wednesday to intensify efforts to root out terrorism.
 arrow South Asia: 'Hidden hands' blamed for Pak riots
Thousands of Pakistanis staged new protests over cartoons of Prophet Hazrat Mohammed (SM) yesterday as officials blamed extremists for riots that have targeted Western firms and left five people dead.
 arrow South Asia: Chirac orders 'toxic' warship back to France
President Jacques Chirac on Wednesday ordered home an asbestos-laden warship after Indian authorities blocked its journey to an Indian scrapyard, days before a visit to New Delhi overshadowed by the legal
 arrow South Asia: HR groups urge donors to press Bhutan on refugees
An alliance of Bhutanese rights groups urged donor nations to press Bhutan's government at a two-day meeting beginning Wednesday to take back refugees from camps in Nepal.
 arrow US launches diplomatic offensive against Iran
The United States signalled Wednesday a broadened diplomatic offensive against Iran, claiming Tehran posed a "strategic challenge" to the world on several fronts beyond fears over its nuclear programme.
 arrow Obituaries premature for Commonwealth
Nothing gets Commonwealth chief Don McKinnon riled faster than saying the 53-nation group is a British colonial relic that is on its deathbed.
 arrow Abu Ghraib abuse violation of int'l law, says ICRC
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said yesterday the latest images of abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison showed clear violations of international humanitarian law.
 arrow 'Saddam warned US of terror strike'
Saddam Hussein told aides he warned America before 1990 that terrorists would launch a huge strike on US soil, even raising the spectre of a nuclear attack, according to secret tapes obtained by ABC News.
 arrow Iraqi sets up probe into 'death squads'
Iraq's Interior Ministry has launched an investigation into claims that a police death squad has been operating in the country, a top official said Thursday.
 arrow Preval named Haiti president after polls deal
Haiti declared Rene Preval, a one-time ally of ousted leader Jean-Bertrand Aristide, the country's next president yesterday after reaching a deal over vote fraud claims and averting a possible explosion
 arrow Cheney takes blame for shooting fellow hunter friend
US Vice President Dick Cheney has taken the blame for shooting a fellow hunter but defiantly defended his decision not to disclose the incident for 24 hours.
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