Vol. 5 Num 672 Thu. April 20, 2006    
 
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Today's Index
Front Pagearrow Sealed city turns into battlefield
The capital came to a standstill yesterday noon as the police waged a multipronged war on the Awami League-led 14-party opposition combine over its sit-in programme in front of the Prime Minister's Office
 arrow City cringes in fear
Tens of thousands of people in the capital suffered due to the police barricades in the major thoroughfares leading to the Prime Minister's Office during 14-party opposition combine's sit-in programme
 arrow Outage, monetary stance worry businesses
The Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) has expressed concern over the increase in government borrowing, higher interest rates, credit squeeze, worsening power supply and likely withdrawal
 arrow BTTB declining low-cost expansion offer
Bangladesh is set to miss a rare opportunity of nearly doubling its revenue by participating in a very low-cost expansion of the international submarine cable it is now being connected with, highly placed
 arrow EC ill-equipped to hold fair elections
The two election commissioners, M Munsef Ali and AK Mohammad Ali on their last day in office yesterday stressed the need for reforms in the Election Commission (EC) and electoral laws.
 arrow Opposition hartal today, Sunday
Apart from today's countrywide dawn to dusk hartal called to protest Kansat killings, the Awami League (AL)-led 14-party opposition combine will observe another shutdown on Sunday protesting yesterday's
 arrow Jamaat leader confesses to JMB link
Md Abdul Majid, a rokon (cadre) of Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh also an executive member of the Dinajpur unit of the organisation confessed to Rab during primary interrogation that he is linked with outlawed
 arrow Developing countries to cut 40pc import tariff in 2006
Safta's committee of experts (CoE) adopted a timeframe for the member countries regarding reduction of import tariffs.
 arrow Dhaka to start talks with Islamabad for FTA
Dhaka has decided to launch a formal negotiation with Pakistan to sign a bilateral free trade agreement (FTA), the first ever in the country's history.
 arrow 2 accused give contradictory information about Shahid
Two accused, Minu and Parvin, gave contradictory information about another accused, Shahid, in the death reference and hearing of appeal yesterday in the sensational Shazneen murder case.
 arrow Mobile operators asked to install tapping tools in 3 months
Cellphone service operators have been asked to be equipped for tapping telephonic conversations and non-voice data within the next three months.
 arrow Jamaat men attack indigenous people
At least 12 people of the indigenous Munda community were injured when a group of people led by a local Jamaat-e-Islami leader attacked them at Kashipur village in Shyamnagar upazila yesterday.
 arrow US worried over political violence
The United States has expressed its concern over renewed political violence in Dhaka.
 arrow 4-party nominee wins Manikganj by-election
Four-party alliance candidate Engineer Mainul Islam Khan Shanto was unofficially declared elected at Manikganj-4 constituency by-election held yesterday.
 arrow HC asks govt why it shouldn't form judicial probe body
The High Court (HC) yesterday issued a rule on the government to explain why it should not form a judicial inquiry committee to probe the incidents of police attack on journalists in Chittagong Divisional
 arrow Media staffs to observe 4-hr strike Saturday
Journalists, employees and workers of all newspapers and news agencies will abstain from work and wear black badges from 10:00am to 2:00pm on April 22 to protest police attack on sports reporters andphotojournalists
 arrow Dhaka asks Beijing for preferential trade steps
Dhaka has asked Beijing to consider special preferential measures to encourage import from Bangladesh and promote increased flow of Chinese investment in the country's manufacturing and service industries.
 arrow SC Bar protests draft contempt of court law
The Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) yesterday protested the draft contempt of court act.
 arrow Outlaw killed in 'crossfire'
A top cadre of outlawed Purbo Banglar Communist Party (PBCP-Janajuddho) was killed during a "shootout" between members of the Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) and his accomplices at Chandmair in Gangni upazila
 arrow Road crashes kill 7
At least five people died and ten others were injured in a road accident on the Dhaka-Mymensingh highway in Masterbari area of Gazipur Sadar upazila yesterday morning.
 arrow Inter-ministerial meet discusses 5-yr hajj policy
An inter-ministerial meeting yesterday discussed the draft 5-year Hajj Policy envisaging identical airfare for the pilgrims.
 arrow Iran crisis deepens
The West and Russia sought yesterday to present a united front over how to deal with Iran despite signs of division over how toughly to act in forcing Tehran to halt its nuclear activity.
 arrow 3 shot dead in Rajshahi village
Three people were killed and five others injured at Palashi Fatepur village in Bagha upazila of Rajshahi as an armed gang attacked the house of Char Gargaria Union Parishad Chairman Nazrul Islam and sprayed
 arrow Curfew in Kathmandu as death toll climbs
Nepal clamped a curfew on the capital after four protesters were shot dead and many more were wounded yesterday, witnesses said, in the worst violence of a campaign to end the king's absolute rule.
 arrow Britons warned over China's 'harvested' organ transplants
Potential transplant patients in Britain were urged yesterday to think twice about going to China for their operation due to a real risk that they may be getting the harvested organ of a freshly executed
 arrow McClellan to leave White House
White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove gave up some of his responsibilities and White House press secretary Scott McClellan announced his resignation yesterday, continuing a shakeup in PresidentBush's
Businessarrow Proposals for setting up steel plant rejected
A high-powered government committee has found unacceptable the proposals of three Chittagong-based steel industrial groups to establish a basic steel plant at the site of now-closed Chittagong Steel Mills.
 arrow Provide SMEs with access to finance
Bangladesh Bank Governor Salehuddin Ahmed has urged commercial banks and other financial institutions to provide small and medium enterprises (SMEs) with access to finance for generating more employment.
 arrow Digital divide creating imbalance in society
Top policy makers yesterday termed digital divide dangerous for the country, saying it is creating imbalance in the society. "Digital divide is already existing in Bangladesh and widening very fast.
 arrow SEC awaits govt approval to reform proposals: Chairman
Chairman of Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Faruq Ahmed Siddiqi here yesterday said the SEC is waiting for the government's approval to its key reform proposals seeking real teeth to ensure corporate
 arrow India to press for tariff liberalisation
As the Safta ministerial meeting begins in Dhaka tomorrow, India will press for tariff liberalisation programme and removal of restrictions on movement of goods in a bid to kick start the South AsianFree
 arrow Oil prices hover around $71
Oil prices hovered around 71 dollars a barrel in Asian trade Wednesday after hitting record highs overnight on rising fears of a US military strike against Iran over its nuclear program and tighter US
 arrow Prime Finance approves 30pc stock dividend
Prime Finance and Investment Limited has approved 30 per cent stock dividend for its shareholders of the company.
 arrow WTO still far from a deal as deadline looms
The 149 nations in the World Trade Organisation are under mounting pressure to reach a deal to drive forward the Doha Round talks on liberalising global commerce, but a compromise still appears out of
 arrow GP promotional tariff from today
GrameenPhone (GP) Ltd offers a special promotional tariff for its different products from today. It will be the lowest call charge ever offered in the mobile phone market of Bangladesh.
 arrow Emirates SkyCargo number 1 in German market
Emirates SkyCargo has been ranked as the top carrier on the German market, a study revealed.
 arrow Indian FDI jumps 41.5pc in 2005-06
Foreign direct investment in India leapt 41.5 percent in the financial year 2005-06, figures released Wednesday showed, but the sum was paltry compared with funds pumped into giant neighbour China.
 arrow Samsung, Sony inject more money into LCD expansion
High-tech giants, Samsung Electronics of South Korea and Japan's Sony agreed Wednesday to boost the production of liquid crystal display (LCD) panels at a joint venture.
 arrow ADB volume of operations increases 30pc in 2005
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) said yesterday the volume of its operations in 2005 increased by 30 percent from the previous year to 7.4 billion US dollars.
 arrow China's fixed asset investment up in Q1
China's fixed asset investment increased 27.7 percent in the first three months of the year compared with the same period in 2005, state media said Wednesday.
Sportsarrow Football: Barca put a foot in Paris
Barcelona took a huge step towards reaching the Champions League final after they defeated AC Milan 1-0 in front of 80,000 spectators at the San Siro on Tuesday.
 arrow Cricket: SA pace duo destroys NZ
Makhaya Ntini completed his second successive ten-wicket haul as South Africa beat New Zealand by 128 runs on the fifth day of the first Test at Centurion Park Wednesday.
 arrow Cricket: Dravid, Sehwag boost India
Rahul Dravid missed his century by just eight runs as India posted a challenging 269-5 in the second and final one-day international against Pakistan here on Wednesday.
 arrow Cricket: Pycroft bucks up Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe manager Andy Pycroft is confident the team can ignore the politics and infighting at home and perform well in the West Indies.
 arrow Cricket: Burnout worries Trescothick
England batsman Marcus Trescothick fears leading international cricketers could suffer from "burn-out" with the fixture calendar showing no signs of easing as the elite get ready for next year's World
 arrow Cricket: Shopping-happy Inzy misses meeting
Pakistan captain Inzamamul Haq has blamed a communication gap for his controversial absence from the cup unveiling ceremony and referee's meeting a day before the start of the first cricket match against
 arrow Football: Ancelotti still hopeful
AC Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti insisted his team were still capable of reaching the Champions League final, despite their demoralising 1-0 home defeat to Barcelona on Tuesday.
 arrow Football: Bits and Bobs
This is Brazil's World Cup: Ronaldinho
Afp, Berlin
Two-time World Footballer of the Year Ronaldinho believes Brazil can live up to their billing as World Cup favourites and defend the

 arrow Cricket: No local cricket coverage till April 22
Journalists on Wednesday decided to boycott all sorts of cricket patronised by Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) including the ongoing Bangladesh-Australia series until the demands are met by April 22.
 arrow Football: United plan Chelsea spoiler
Chelsea may need just a point to retain their Premiership title when Manchester United arrive at Stamford Bridge a week on Saturday but that won't stop the second-placed visitors from going all out to
 arrow Football: Steaua invoke God's help
Steaua Bucharest's owner travelled to Greece this week to ask God to help his club win the UEFA Cup.
 arrow Cricket: Younis sees Pakistan thru'
Younis Khan hit a compact half-century to steer Pakistan to a six-wicket victory over India in the opening one-day international here on Tuesday.
 arrow Cricket: Tougher British laws against betting cheats
Tough new laws to help stamp out betting cheats were unveiled by the British government on Wednesday with the full backing of major sporting organisations ranging from football to horse racing.
 arrow Football: Real eyeing star trio
Real Madrid's director of football Benito Floro has proposed the club buy Liverpool's Steven Gerrard and Inter Milan's Adriano, and suggested Bernd Schuster as the next Real coach.
 arrow Football: Shearer fears the worst
Alan Shearer admitted Tuesday he "fears the worst" after a scan on his injured knee had to be delayed.
 arrow Cricket: Spearman strikes first county ton
Former New Zealand batsman Craig Spearman scored the first century of the new English County Championship season to help Gloucestershire to 262 for four on the opening day of their second division clash
 arrow Football: Valdez wants Dortmund move
Werder Bremen's Paraguayan international striker Nelson Haedo Valdez said Wednesday that he wants to join Bundesliga rivals Borussia Dortmund at the end of the season.
 arrow Volleyball: Premier v'ball
Dilkhusha Sporting Club defeated a hapless Fire Service in straight sets in the United Commercial Bank Premier Division Volleyball League at the volleyball stadium yesterday.
 arrow Football: Lyall passes away
Former West Ham United and Ipswich manager John Lyall has died of a heart attack at the age of 66, West Ham said on their website on Wednesday.
 arrow Tennis: Amol in semis
Top seed Amal Roy coasted to the semifinals in the men's singles event of the MA Jabbar Memorial Tennis Tournament yesterday.
Metropolitanarrow TIB to publish a dozen reports on corruption
Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) will publish more than a dozen diagnostic reports on widespread corruption in various vital service-delivering organisations between June and December thisyear,
 arrow 'Domestic violence claims lives of 3,043 women last year'
At least 3,043 women died in different incidents of domestic violence last year and of them, 1041 victims committed suicide, according to a report released by the Mass-line Media Centre (MMC) recently.
 arrow 'Allocate space at JU arts bldg as per master plan'
Teachers of English and Philosophy departments of Jahangirnagar University (JU) yesterday met the dean of arts faculty demanding implementation of master plan in allocating space at the newly constructed
 arrow Ruling alliance grabs huge wealth thru' corrupt means
Leader of the Opposition in Parliament Sheikh Hasina yesterday said the BNP-Jamaat ruling coalition has amassed huge wealth through corrupt means and thrown the country on the verge of ruination by destroying
 arrow 'Uphold HR of indigenous people with disability'
Speakers at a workshop yesterday called for upholding human rights of indigenous people with disability by bringing them into the mainstream of national life.
 arrow 4 killed, trader shot in Kushtia, Jhenidah
Four people including a college girl were killed while a trader was shot by miscreants in separate incidents in Kushtia and Jhenidah on Tuesday night.
 arrow BCL calls strike Apr 24
Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL), student wing of main opposition Awami League (AL), has called strike at all educational institutions across the country on April 24 to protest the killing of a leaderwho
 arrow Removal of RU teacher demanded
Several hundred students of the Department of Botany of Rajshahi University (RU) yesterday staged a two-hour sit-in in front of the Administration Building demanding immediate removal of a professor for
 arrow Sylhet JCD activist succumbs to injuries
A Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) activist, who was critically injured in a factional clash Monday, died at Sylhet Osmani Medical College Hospital early today.
 arrow Tk 717 cr German support for development
Germany will provide Tk 717 crore (Euro 83.3 million) for income generation and poverty alleviation projects and to develop rural roads and markets.
 arrow Concern over RU authorities' interference in dept exams
Academic committee of the management department at Rajshahi University yesterday expressed deep concern over the university authorities' interference in the department examination in favour of a Jatiyatabadi
 arrow Selima Raman undergoes surgery in Bangkok
State Minister for Cultural Affairs Selma Raman underwent surgery on the right knee at Bamrungrad Hospital of Bangkok on Tuesday.
 arrow China education exhibition begins tomorrow
The second China Education Exhibition jointly organised by the China Scholarship Council and North South University (NSU) will be held at the Bangladesh-China Friendship Conference Centre on April 21and
 arrow PM reaffirms support to Palestine
Prime Minister Khaleda Zia reaffirmed Bangladesh's continuous support for establishing the Palestinians' rightful rights through peaceful solution to the longstanding problem.
 arrow Bomb found at RU
A live bomb was found at the main entrance of Shahidullah Arts Building of Rajshahi University (RU) yesterday that created panic among the teachers and students.
 arrow Factory accident kills female worker in Jessore
A female worker was killed yesterday when she got entangled with the belt of a machine of Janata Krishi Machineries in Jessore town. The deceased was identified as Shahanara, 32, wife of Pannu Miah.
 arrow AL targets Dohar to tarnish my image: Huda
Communications Minister Barrister Nazmul Huda in a statement yesterday said Awami League central leaders had targeted his constituency Dohar to implement their blueprint of conspiracy and to tarnish his
 arrow Dr Yuree awarded Universal Grand Master of 2006
Grand Master Dr Yuree was awarded Universal Grand Master of the Year 2006, in the top category, which is a special honour for the grand masters of martial arts in the world, says a press release.
 arrow World's oldest ice block unveiled
A million-year-old ice sample drilled from three kilometres under the Antarctic and unveiled in Tokyo on Tuesday could yield vital clues on climate change, Japanese scientists said.
 arrow 20th BCS Forum's reunion on May 5
The first reunion of 20th BCS Forum will be held at Ramna Chinese Restaurant in the city at 10:00am on May 5, says a press release.
 arrow DU exams deferred
All the examinations of Dhaka University (DU) scheduled for today have been postponed due to unavoidable reasons, says a DU press release yesterday. Schedules of other examinations will remain unchanged.
 arrow Obituary
Senior journalist Reza Quamrul passed away due to cardiac arrest at Suhrawardy Hospital in the city on Tuesday evening at the age of 58.
 arrow With Sri Lanka talks off, what hope peace?
With Sri Lanka's rebels pulling out of talks with the government, the peace process may falter, leading to more violence and a danger the island could revert to a ruinous two-decade civil war, analysts
Nationalarrow Acute power crisis hits tea industry
Acute power crisis has hit production in tea gardens, besides affecting normal life in Moulvibazar.
 arrow Boro farming bears the brunt
Farmers in the northern region are facing a crisis of diesel at the fag end of IRRI-Boro cultivation season.
 arrow More protests against Ctg police excesses
Journalists' protests across the country against the April 16 police attack on media men in Chittagong entered the third day yesterday.
 arrow A unique day for Satkhira children
It was a unique day for the children in the small town of Satkhira yesterday who took to the streets and joined hands to create awareness to protect and ensure child rights.
 arrow Relatives rampage hospital
Agitated relatives and attendants rampaged Moulvibazar Sadar Hospital Tuesday night following the death of a delivery patient allegedly due to neglect by doctors.
 arrow Bomb hoax creates panic in Barisal
A bomb hoax yesterday created panic among family members of in-laws of Jagannath Pandey, one of two judges killed in a JMB suicide bombing in Jhalakathi last year.
 arrow Wife killed for dowry
A housewife was killed for dowry at Bhariachara village in Muradnagar upazila in Comilla.
Point-Counterpointarrow Example is better than promise
While addressing a grand rally at Rajshahi Madrasha Maidan on March 29 organised by Rajshahi city unit of the ruling BNP, Begum Khaleda Zia, the prime minister and chairperson of the BNP pledged thatif
 arrow West Bengal polls: Leftists tipped for easy win
Polling for the state assembly or "Vidhan Sabha" in the Indian state of West Bengal has begun on April 17 and the voting will be completed in five phases.
 arrow An expensive friendship
Friendship between nations is never a matter that comes free of charge.
Culturearrow Rokeya's lyrical lines
Rokeya Sultana's ongoing exhibition at the Alliance Francaise brings in samples of all her work ranging nearly two decades.
 arrow Pottery to embellish interiors
How best can we brighten the dismal nooks and crannies of our homes for the festive occasion if not by filling them up with terracotta pottery of beige and brownish hues or painted over? One gets an entire
 arrow New Year celebrations in Dinajpur
Marking the first day of the Bangla calendar year 1413, Udichi Dinajpur, a cultural organisation, held a programme at Dinajpur Institute recently.
 arrow Jackson plans new album in '07
Michael Jackson, seeking to revive his singing career after his acquittal on charges, has teamed up with a label in Bahrain to record a new album set for release next year, the label said last Tuesday.
Internationalarrow India presses Nepal to restore democracy
India stepped up pressure on Nepal's King Gyanendra yesterday to restore democracy, sending a special envoy and its top diplomat to hold talks with the monarch to try to defuse a fortnight of crippling
 arrow Thais vote for Senate amid lingering crisis
Thais cast ballots yesterday to elect a new Senate with the country still mired in political crisis after snap polls earlier this month that led prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra to step aside.
 arrow Fresh bid to salvage Lankan ceasefire
At least 10 new killings were reported yesterday in Sri Lanka's embattled north and east as Norway's new peace envoy launched a fresh attempt to salvage the island's tottering ceasefire.
 arrow Hu promotes closer ties on US trip
Chinese President Hu Jintao touted deepening US-China ties as he prepared to tour a major US exporter on Wednesday before a White House summit expected to touch on trade frictions and Iran's nuclear programme.
 arrow Dead Sea now really dying
It has survived since Biblical times -- but now the Dead Sea may really be dying.
 arrow Safeguards for refugees under threat: UN
International safeguards for refugees are under threat from tighter asylum restrictions, growing intolerance and terrorism fears, a UN agency said on Wednesday. "Core elements of refugee status ...
 arrow Shia cleric, driver burned to death in Pakistan
A leading Shia Muslim cleric and his driver were burned to death in Pakistan when gunmen shot at their car, hitting the fuel tank and causing it to explode, police said Wednesday.
 arrow Aceh separatist leaders return home after 30 years in exile
Leaders of the former separatist Free Aceh Movement (GAM) touched down in their home province in Indonesia Wednesday after 30 years in exile, the latest step forward in a much-hailed peace process.
 arrow Judge rules Saddam signatures 'authentic'
The trial of Saddam Hussein for crimes against humanity resumed yesterday, with the chief judge ruling that signatures linking the ousted Iraqi leader to a massacre in the 1980s were authentic.
 arrow Indian envoy to NZ stripped of credentials
India has stripped its controversial high commissioner to New Zealand of his credentials and named his successor yesterday, but refused to say why.
Editorialarrow Editorial: Capital put under lock-down
We fully understand the need to provide security to the PMO.
 arrow Editorial: Reuse of syringes
As medical services show increasing signs of wearing out, a photograph published in this daily yesterday showed a woman collecting used injection syringes and test tubes from garbage.
 arrow Islamic militancy and Bangladesh's strategic importance
This article is in response to certain queries of a young colleague of mine presently finishing his Masters in Australia.
 arrow Preserving internal peace
Three decades (or so) ago almost to the day, on April 13, 1975, unidentified gunmen killed four Phalangists during an attempt on the life of Pierre Gemayel, founder of the Lebanese (Maronite Christian)
Letters to Editorarrow Attack on journalists
Once again the media men found them helpless victims of ruthless and unjustified police torture at the Chittagong Stadium. It is highly deplorable and despicable.
 arrow Uniform grading system
Recently we've been observing that the UGC has taken an initiative to have a uniform grading system in all the private and public universities of the country.
 arrow Support us
The issue is that there is only one code page (called CP1256), a Microsoft proprietary code used by its Internet Browser for processing Arabic characters.
 arrow Dying anger
The anger, frustration against the cartoonist is dying down. No law or regulations were passed for a permanent recourse. Other religions, what they thought as blasphemous, stopped it long ago.
 
   
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