Security blanket in Dhaka City for Saarc Summit
It was good to see the urgency in the government for ensuring total security and safety during the Saarc summit. They organised a so-called "Security Blanket" in the major areas of Dhaka City where the summit took place and in the hotels and government rest houses where the valued guests stayed. We were prepared to go through the hardships of walking as vehicle movement was restricted in my area for the sake of national image, proving that Bangladesh or rather the BNP government can in fact maintain security in the country. But what about the unimportant areas? What if the terrorist groups were actually waiting for such a situation? It is wrong to presume that they will not take advantage of this to spread fear in Chittagong, or in Feni, Comilla, Rangpur and other small towns? Shouldn't our government (or rather, State Minister Lutfozzaman Babar) have been more circumspect?
Faisal Khair Chowdhury (Bobee)
On "Congratulations to Bangladesh"
I am a regular reader of SWM and enjoy every bit of it. But after reading "Congratulations To Bangladesh! And Better Luck Next Time Finland" on SWM's last issue, I felt really offended. The writer, who happens to be a citizen of Finland, thoroughly mocked our beloved country in her article by using insolent and irrelevant phrases. Is being labelled the most corrupt country by Transparency International something to congratulate and ridicule Bangladesh about? What was the writer trying to prove by saying people in Finland always had honesty, integrity etc? Was she trying to suggest that we Bangalis are neither honest nor truthful? Who gave her the right to project such false and inappropriate stereotypes about us? We are proud of our nation no matter how good or how bad it is. We love our culture and our people and we have complete faith and trust in each other. One day, if Allah wishes and through our sincere efforts, our golden land will set an example of prosperity and power to all humanity.
Karim A. Sajwani
The article "Advertisements Are Brutal" by Rubaiyat Hossain was truly a fun read in many ways. Even in this day and age, when women are trying to move away from the stereotypical ideas held in society, the corporate world is still selling the age-old idea of women occupying a secondary position in society to sell products. This also proves that the ever-developing technology is a major part of a male world, where women are related only to spices and housework, and limited to beautiful clothes and jewellery only. I hope that viewers can see through these 'hidden messages' in advertisements that Rubaiyat talks about in her article.
Cricket in ruins
It seems that once the vibrant, lively and tense game of cricket has now become a boring sport. In September, the Super Test and Super Series ODIs which were expected to be nail-biting clashes, disappointed everyone after a lacklustre performance by the World 11 cricketers. The much eagerly awaited Protea-Kiwi and Indo-Lanka ODI series turned out to be a one-sided affair. And minnows like Bangladesh, Zimbabwe and Kenya totally marred the good reputation of cricket. As for the ongoing test series between Australia and West Indies, the results were predicted long ago, a 5-0 whitewash of West Indies is just a matter of time. The ICC should really do something to stop cricket from becoming extinct.
The Aga Khan School
Advertisements are really brutal
How many women get jobs after using fairness creams? Does fairness guarantee employment? Many parents are looking for young, beautiful and fair girls for their sons. Not being fair enough means no good for them. I have even seen some men trying to persuade their girlfriends to use fairness creams so that they could show off their girlfriends to their friends and parents. Fairness seems to be ruling everything. However, no fairness cream has helped us to be fair and neither has any shampoo stopped hair fall. All advertisements are false promises. We know promises are made to be broken. Nevertheless, we are addicted to these commodities, since the attractive models, seductive words and melodious music persuade us to purchase them.
Rubaida W Sharmin
When entertainment becomes a pain
Bangladesh Television (BTV) is the most important and effective medium for people around the country, especially those who do not have access to satellite television. Unfortunately, I am one of them. But to add to our woes, Chittagong Television (CTV) deprives us of even the little entertainment we could derive. CTV sometimes just stops BTV programmes mid-way or just before the finishing climax. It did not spare the audience even during Eid, when most programmes on BTV were enjoyable. CTV has become a pain more than an entertainment medium.
On the October 21 cover story
SWM's October 21 was excellent but it focussed more on the reputed fashion houses whose products can compete with foreign ones. But most people in our country are poor and cannot afford clothes from these places even during Eid. These fashion houses have very beautiful, good quality handloom clothing which the middle and upper classes can afford. But the handloom industry behind the scenes is another matter. It is dying away. Only the NGOs do anything to try and help. If these successful fashion houses helped the weavers out then life would be easier for them. While the government is beginning to promote the handloom industry, it has not been as effective as yet, so the fashion houses should really do something to help.
M S Jamie
Department of International Relations
SWM's October 28 cover story on Jamdani was an important one. Jamdani is a part of our heritage. But it is sad that it is becoming extinct. Skilled weavers are not paid enough and are losing interest in the art and leaving it. The government as well as private fashion houses should patronise the Jamdani industry. Increasing variety and export should also be considered. It is a matter of hope that some fashion houses work with Jamdani. It can also be a good source of foreign currency. We hope the government will take steps to promote the industry and help out Jamdani weavers.
Department of Economics
In last week's issue in the feature titled 'Aadil's Grand Day Out' the date for Aadil's Bengal Gallery exhibition was given as December 18 to 24. It should be December 27 to January 2. For further details contact : email@example.com.
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