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       Volume 10 |Issue 41 | October 28, 2011 |


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Photo: Zahedul I Khan

Subsidising Public Education

The cover story for October 21, was well-written. Even though I didn't necessarily agree with all the viewpoints presented by the writer, I thought his arguments were precise and focused. I like the way he presented the story by breaking it into small sections, and his innovative use of quotes throughout the article. It was one of those articles you could just read in one sitting. Good job!

Rumana Chowdhury
Gulshan, Dhaka


First need hunger-free not digital Bangladesh

The people of Bangladesh placed the present government to the office not in the hopes of a digital Bangladesh but in the hopes of a Bangladesh where at least three square meals are guaranteed. But the present circumstances tell a different story. The price of the necessary commodities has increased so much that now it seems sky is the limit. The government has totally failed to control inflation and is defending itself by saying that the price is much higher in the neighbouring country! On the other hand, very interestingly enough, the prices at the share market is declining rapidly. Besides, our country is plagued with many other problems, but here I only mention two major problems. If this trend continues, common people like us would not have any paths open other than suicide. The people of Bangladesh don't bother about whether the country is digital or analogue; their demand is much simpler. They would like to get relief from the curse of hunger. We know: “A hungry man is an angry man.” It will be impossible for the government to remain in power if the hungry people of Bangladesh become angry. That's why my urgent request to the present government is to at least come forward to solve the two aforementioned issues.

Mohammad Zia-ul-haque

Photo: Zahedul I Khan

Incorporating the 'others' into the Mainstream

“Incorporating the 'others' into the Mainstream” has brought to focus a moving account of the sufferings of hijras. Our culture has ceaselessly and unscrupulously excluded hijras from mainstream discourse of any disciplines that one can think of. Also, we cannot forget that the civil society has always endorsed the politics of silence about the issue. Doing something for hijras was never so much as mentioned in the agendas of the two major political parties. Not even the so called left wing organisations took an initiative to curb the dehumanisation of the transgender community. Depriving them of an identity have enabled us to view them as something that falls short of being human. Hence the discrimination had always been legitimised and little did we suffer the pang of conscience.

The efforts of the government officials, although essentially bureaucratic and depoliticised, are praise worthy. However, it is the political organisations that should have been raising voice on the issue first, as is the norm of a functioning democracy.

Ekramul Huq
Shajahanpur, Dhaka


Dhaka, one of the worst living cities in the world! We ourselves everyday affirm it to be unliveable. But before uttering these phrases in mind, ask yourself: what have you done to the packet of snacks that you enjoyed coming back on the way home from school?

Undoubtedly, it was thrown by the roadside. If we roam around the streets of Dhaka city, we can find only empty juice bottles, torn brochures or filthy garbage! It's not only the government who is responsible for the state of our cities. Pedestrians are equally liable, and the most astonishing thing is, we don't even bother when we see someone littering on the streets. The next time you see someone that irresponsible, do make it a point to teach the person not to do so!

If we're looking for a short-run remedy, we can get students of each school, college and university to clean the area in front of their institutions. That way at least most of Dhanmondi would be clean! Besides, the local authority of the cities can charge high fines to those for throwing garbage on streets. In order to do that, we need a large number of police officials in every area or close circuit cameras. Meanwhile, we should have bins available at every corner of the street. Our little effort can make Dhaka a perfect city.

Letter received via email

Is this what democracy looks like?

'Not “By the People”' published last Friday highlighted some very crucial contradictions in Awami League's present stances. It's incredible that AL has three unelected ministers and seven advisors and yet has no problems in taking a moral high ground by claiming that the caretaker government system is undemocratic. I in no way wish to give further ammunition to BNP and its supporters, but I do think that we, those of us who had strong expectations from this AL government, should hold the party accountable for some of its not-so-sound decisions. If AL continues to go on like this, it might just lose some of its valuable vote banks. Is AL willing to face the repercussions?

Imam Rahman


In the last issue of the Star (October 21, 2011) in the article 'Bringing a Smile to a Child's Face' certain errors were inadvertently made. The caption for the picture that reads 'Arifa Rahman, Coordinator of the Funding Committee' should be 'Professor Naz Karim, Vice President of Soroptimist International Club, Dhaka. The caption for the photo that says 'Naveed Mahmud' should read as Naveed Mahbub. One of the schools mentioned in the article 'Anjumari Primary School should be Anjuman Mufidul Islam Primary School. The club does not intend to 'renovate' or 'permanently' use the site but would like to help Shanoori School as a gesture of appreciation for letting them use the site. The name of the teacher of the learning centre run by the Club should be Mahbooba Arju. In the article titled 'Tennessee's Tragic Muse' the caption for the photo Tennessee William's mother's name should be 'Edwina' not Adena as was printed. We sincerely regret the errors.

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