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     Volume 7 Issue 6 | February 8, 2008 |

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On “Special and Exceptional”
The fact that a neglected part of the society has a lot to contribute has been proved again through the outstanding and consistent performances of the intellectually disabled sportspersons disclosed in the cover story “Special and Exceptional” (January 18, 2008).
Where the physically and psychologically sound players hardly bring any glory and reputation for our country, these intellectually disabled children have been performing consistently in the Special Olympic Games and securing a good number of medals. This just goes to show that anything can be achieved through training, determination and perseverance.
It is now the society's turn to change its conventional attitude towards disabled people and accept them as individuals with incredible potential which it would cherish so that they can move forward to practice their latent merit. This will bring further achievements for our country in the international arena.
The government along with the authorities concerned must take the responsibility to provide them with all the opportunities they need to get better and materialise their dreams and establish their worth.
Amit Abdullah
Convener of DPELS, Dania Pathagar
Department Of Finance, University of Dhaka

Family Planning
Population is one of the greatest problems of our country and is growing at an alarming rate. The government of Bangladesh has been trying to control the excessive growth of population in anticipation of the grave consequences. Family planning programmes have been introduced and extended up to villages. The prescription of two children per couple aims to reduce the growth rate of the population. At present the rate of growth of the population is at 2.1 percent. It needs to be further reduced. One of the reasons why family planning programmes have not been as effective is because the people of Bangladesh are not accustomed to family planning measures. They are not educated and do not understand the importance of family planning. The superstition under which most people live makes it even difficult to make them understand its importance. Most people think that family planning is against Islamic ideology. There are also a lot of low quality contraceptives which don't work and are a threat to a person's health.
Measures should be taken to effectively implement family planning programmes aimed for different groups. People can be motivated to understand the reality and the best measure of course is the spread of education.
S.M. Najmul Haque Emon
Santahar, Bogra

People's Reaction to Taxation
The word 'tax' seems to push people into playing a game of hide and seek. But this fear does not necessarily arise from the fact that a certain amount of money will be deducted from their income. According to section 75 of Income Tax Ordinance 1984 all assessees have to submit their tax returns. There are a lot of impediments in our taxation process, for these reasons a lot of people are not too eager to pay tax.
The authorities who manage the tax system are not fair and have made this process complex and time-consuming. The government should arrange promotional activities to encourage people to learn about the taxation process. The government should also arrange benefits for those who hold a TIN (Taxpayer's Identification Number). It will not work, if the government is reactive and collects tax from assessees. The government itself gave lots of opportunities to evade tax and later helped some people to make their money white. Another solution which is practised abroad is TDS (Tax Deducted at Source), which would simplify the problem for the tax payers as well as the government.
Jhumur Saha
By email

Lack of Part Time Employment
A large number of students come to Dhaka every year for pursuing higher education. It is no doubt a step in the right direction for the future of our country. However, most of these young people are from the villages. In villages they usually come from low and medium-income groups. But the standard of living in Dhaka is extremely high. And the prices of the daily necessities are constantly on the rise. So, it becomes tough for them to match their funds with the new life and they struggle to cope in this situation. They have no choice but to look for a viable source of income. It's a matter of great regret that there are hardly any opportunities for such part-time employment. The public and private sector should look into making such part-time opportunities available for the disadvantaged students.
Md. Shafiqul Islam

Resuscitate Our Garments Sector
The garments sector is the most promising sector for our economy. It plays an important role in increasing our national GDP and earns a great portion of our total foreign currency. But it is very sad that from the beginning of last year till now this sector is facing various man-made disasters in Dhaka and Chittagong. Labour unrest and various other inconsistencies have caused the foreign buyers to sever their contracts and re-establish their business links with other countries like India, Sri Lanka etc.
It is an extremely alarming trend that our garments sector is in such a vulnerable condition. But the successive governments have failed to take the necessary steps to improve the situation. The people of the country expect the present caretaker government to take effective steps to control the garment sector of the country. One thing that should always be remembered is that the workers are the most important resources of the industry. Nothing should be done which might go against the welfare of the workers. The government should ensure that the workers receive their just salaries and working conditions.
Md. Abul Basar (Bulbul)
Dept. Of Philosophy (MA Final), CU

Better Late than Never
It gives me immense pleasure to be an eye-witness of the success of an unprecedented peaceful movement by the DU students and teachers. This reiterates DU's stance at what it deems unjust.
DU students have demonstrated how a movement can be made successful with that notable degree of peace and resilience shown even in the face of the CTG's repeated failures in keeping its words to free the detained teachers within the pledged timeframe. Despite being late, CTG deserves applause for being able to eventually realise the just demand of the DU students.
The CTG has once again demonstrated a sign of its resolve in keeping a peaceful and congenial atmosphere in the country with a view to arranging a free, fair and credible election by the end of this year.
Ahmad Ferdous Bin Alam
Department of CSE, DU

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