Stringent law enforcement
A new law has recently banned smoking in public places.
It is a timely and good move on the part of the government.
Several times I've seen smokers about to light cigarettes
but non-smokers around them stopped them. But in public
places like college or university campuses and restaurants,
if the majority are smokers, than those who don't smoke
cannot stop the former from smoking. Some people even smoke
in "No Smoking" zones with no regard whatsoever
for the law. The authorities should monitor smoking in public
places. Not only does smoking pollute the environment but
is also bad for children. There should be smoking and non-smoking
zones for the incorrigible smokers.
Fahad Osmani Medical College Sylhet
cordoning the campus
At the very threshold, I would like to clarify that I am
not against student politics but its current trend is disgusting.
After the tragic demise of Shammi, a student of Psychology
Department of Dhaka University, it has become a common phenomenon
for the general students to express mourning through bringing
out processions and wearing black badges. But student leaders
trying to gain politically from this is horrid. Where are
our morality and ethics? Is DU really the Oxford of the
East? Leaving aside their books our reputed institution's
young scholars are now cordoning the main entrances of Dhaka
University. Their target is to thwart BCL leaders and activists
from entering the campus. For whose interest are they doing
it? Will it really do them any good? No, but they have Utopian
dreams that will never come true.
Bazlur Rahman Dhaka University
It's been frequently noticed that the national cricket team
of Bangladesh has been called "Tigers" by some
newspapers, especially The Daily Star, which is
quite unexpected. The name "Tigers" refers to
a hidden and underground political party in Sri Lanka and
this is how a lot of people here in North America are familiar
with the name. I don't think there should be such nicknames
for the Bangladesh cricket team which may create a lot of
confusion among the multicultural people living here in
Mohammed Toronto, Canada
thoughts on Devdas
Walid Ibn Matin's reaction to Srabonti Narmeen Ali's article
cleared up the misconceptions I had about Devdas. However,
I could not understand why Devdas should not be called a
"coward" and a "spineless" person for
not marrying Paro. Was Devdas's love not true or deep enough
to defy his parents' wishes and make his own decision? Devdas
was certainly a person in command of his morality. His willingness
to be the "good boy" was as strong as his love
for his parents but sometimes, a person may need to take
some decisions in his/her life which may be labelled as
"immoral" judged by the standards set by society.
If he was so truly in love with his parents, he should have
remained happy with the woman of their choice. Or, rather
than hitting Paro for having the guts to break some rules
and coming to his house in the middle of the night.
Arefin Dhaka On e-mail
response to Sabiha Mowla
It was amusing to read the myopic and ludicrous comment
from Sabiha Mowla (June 2005) that obscenity and indecency
play a major part of Indian entertainment and that Indian
shows and movies are copied from the West.
While the indecency problem plague film industries world-wide
(Wasn't there a recent furore about the vulgarism and crassness
in the local film industry?!), the Indian industry has also
delivered clean and internationally acclaimed movies such
as Lagaan, Devdas, Black, Munnabhai MBBS (whose
copyright is being sought after by a foreign production
house), My Brother Nikhil and so on...The list
is endless. Vulgarity is the least that drives audiences
to view these. Moreover, how many of these movies does the
author feel have been plagiarised? Yes, the likes of Indian
Idol and KBC are modelled on similar Western shows and is
rather an adaptation to suit local needs.
My humble request to the author and others of his ilk --
you are free to voice your opinion but avoid a jaundiced
eye and stereotype!
Last but not the least -- are the Kasautis, Kyunkis
and Jassis -- the staple diet for the local populace
-- also vulgar?
writer in the making
In my opinion, the SWM issue of April 29, 2005 is one of
the best issues in recent times. The cover story "DU's
Smelly Secret" by Kajalie Shehreen Islam exposed the
extreme indifference or ignorance of people about hygiene
at DU's. The "4/11 -- The killing tower of Savar"
by Chintito revealed the worst kind of negligence by the
owners that lead to the end of so many innocent, precious
lives. And the article by Shamim Ahsan about encouraging
children to read was an invaluable article indeed. These
articles have shown that, besides the senior writers and
contributors of the paper and magazine, the in-house writers
of SWM have made phenomenal progress, which is very encouraging.
"Baby I love your ways" and some other articles
by Srabonti Narmeen Ali in recent issues of SWM determine
the fact that a great writer is in the making. Srabonti
has been exhibiting her subtle insight into the human and
social psyche with her passionate writing. She's quite honest
and straightforward in expressing her conviction. I wish
her and all the young talents of SWM success and humbly
remind them that we all still have miles to go! Congrats
and keep it up!
Rafiqul Islam Rime Agrabad, Chittagong
response to "Dear Devdas"
I should thank the writer of "Dear Devdas" published
in SWM on May 13, for writing on an important issue. I am
not defending the movie but I cannot accept the way she
has treated our society. Yes, I agree with her that Devdas
played two women at the same time. He is spineless, a lecher
and exploiter. Paro was unlucky that she loved such a man.
But my question is, does the movie necessarily represent
our society? I should say it does not, because the movie
is a foreign one made on a distorted story of a Bangla novel.
And seeing such a movie we cannot say that those lechers
and exploiters are seen as heroes in our society. It would
be dangerous if we try to get the actual news of our society
from an alien movie that is totally aimed at making money.
People see such movies not for their stories but for something
else as stated by the writer: "In fact, with the sounds
of Dola Re forever playing in my head, the sequins of Madhuri
and Aishwarya's costumes blinding me and the sheer brilliance
of Shah Rukh being Shah Rukh, I had never really thought
about the actual story or what it stood for."
Similar female characters are found in Bangla novels such
as Madhukori (Rusha) by Buddhadev Guha, Durbin (Remi) by
Shirshendu Mukherjee, Kobi (Sajjad's mother) by Humayun
Ahmed and many others. But society is not calling all of
them "a shameless hussy".
Amimul Ahsan Rajshahi University
Letters to the Editor, Dhaka Diary and Write to Mita, with
the writer's name and address, should be within 200 words.
All articles should be within 1,200 words. A cover letter
is not necessary, but every write-up should include the
writer's name, phone number and email address (if any).
While SWM welcomes unsolicited articles and photographs,
it cannot accept the responsibility of their loss or damage.
SWM does not return unsolicited articles and photos. Response
time for unsolicited write-ups range from three weeks to
two months. All articles submitted are subject to editing
for reasons of space and clarity.
All materials should be sent to: Star Weekend Magazine,
19 Karwan Bazar, Dhaka-1215, Fax: 880-2-8125155 or emailed
It is recommended that those submitting work for the first
time to the SWM take a look at the sample copy beforehand.
Our website is: http://www.thedailystar.net/magazine
(R) thedailystar.net 2005