News of: Sunday, 6th of January, 2008
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Economists say the ongoing crisis of rice is the result of government failure to ensure timely import needed to make good the production shortfall caused by recurring floods and cyclone last year.
Edible oil prices increased by Tk 2 per litre yesterday in local markets as crude soybean oil prices soared to $ 1,200 a tonne in international markets the previous day.
Chief Adviser (CA) Fakhruddin Ahmed yesterday hoped the government will soon be able to build a strong, transparent and accountable local government on the basis of the recommendations made by a committee to effectively provide desired services for the grassroots people.
Global human rights watchdog Amnesty International (AI) yesterday asked the caretaker government to try war criminals.
It was 2:00pm, already late for the first meal of the day. Sitting by the Karwan Bazar railway tracks, Marzina Begum was just making preparations to do the cooking for her family of six.
Chief Adviser (CA) Fakhruddin Ahmed yesterday said the government has taken steps to import 10 lakh tonnes of rice to stabilise the food prices.
Finance Adviser Mirza Azizul Islam yesterday attributed the present rice crisis to lack of coordination between demand and supply and lake of confidence among the traders.
Army Chief General Moeen U Ahmed has said the main challenge for the caretaker government is to control the soaring prices of essentials and keep the market stable until the next Boro harvest.
Dialogues between political parties and the government are an imperative to resolve the present political crisis in the country and to pave the way towards holding a free, fair and credible election, said speakers at a roundtable yesterday.
Panellists at the BBC Bangladesh Sanglap yesterday demanded immediate trial of the war criminals of 1971.
Bangladesh Muktijoddha Sangsad's Patuakhali unit has started preparing a list of Razakars, the local collaborators of Pakistan Army during the Liberation War, in the district.
Debutants Tamim Iqbal and Zunaed Siddiqui put on a record partnership for the first wicket as Bangladesh staged a dramatic turnaround in their second innings against New Zealand on the second day of the first Test at the University Oval in Dunedin yesterday.
Three of a family were burnt alive yesterday as a fire broke out at their house at Kashimnagar village of Paikgachha upazila in Khulna.
BNP leader and former deputy minister for education Abdus Salam Pintu, reportedly detained by joint forces for his suspected involvement in the August 21 grenade attacks on an Awami League rally in 2004, is yet to be handed over to police or produced before court.
The Awami League's Dhaka city unit yesterday called on their central leadership to announce specific programmes to free party chief Sheikh Hasina from jail.
British Conservative Party MP Anne Main arrived here yesterday on a weeklong visit to discuss elections and others issues with the government and opposition leaders and civil-society representatives.
Labour and Social Affairs Minister of Qatar Sultan Bin Hasan al-Dhabit Al-Dosari arrived in Dhaka yesterday on a two-day visit.
A man was killed on Friday evening as a Dhaka-bound train ran over him near Arani rail station in Rajshahi.
Indian Border Security Force (BSF) shot dead a Bangladeshi cattle trader on Ratanai border under Baliadangi upazila early yesterday.
The husband of slain opposition leader Benazir Bhutto yesterday accused elements within Pakistan's government of responsibility for her murder and urged Britain and the United States to support a UN investigation into the killing.
Soldiers overran separatist Tamil rebel bunkers and traded artillery fire across Sri Lanka's embattled north yesterday leaving 26 insurgents dead, the military said, just days after the country's 2002 cease-fire collapsed.
Two American soldiers killed during a joint US-Iraq patrol in the northern city of Mosul last week were deliberately shot by an Iraqi soldier, the US and Iraqi militaries said on Saturday.
We regret the inadvertent mistake in a caption yesterday that described Raju Bhashkorjo (sculpture) on Dhaka University campus as Aparajeyo Bangla.
The detained Dhaka University teachers and students are undergoing a legal process despite the two-week deadline the government had set for their release which expired on December 23. Nearly two weeks have elapsed since then. Their already long period of detention is that much more extended, for how long, nobody can say with any degree of certainty.
A roundtable on our endangered power sector and what needs to be done about it in the national interest emphasises once again an issue of vital public concern. In the past many years, the inefficiency as well as corruption that has sapped the strength of the sector has left the country reeling from its effects, to a point where the nation is still paying a price. One cannot but agree with the participants, many of whom echoed the views of large sections of the public when they referred to improper utilisation of natural resources and unbridled corruption in the power sector as realities we must now contend with. With power shortage now well over 2000 megawatts, it is not unnatural that industrial production in the country will be directly affected.
The assassination of Benazir Bhutto has dealt a serious blow to the re-emergence of democracy in Pakistan and the country's return to stability. Echoing global sentiment, Brussels based International Crisis Group in a statement said: "Pakistan's military backed interim government is not in a position to carry out a fair investigation into the assassination. The United Nations Security Council should meet urgently to establish an international commission of enquiry to determine who ordered and carried out the killings. Given the long standing connections between the Pakistan military and jihadi groups, this would be the only way to carry out an impartial and credible investigation."
That soaring rice prices are hitting households below the belt is not a secret in a market economy and a society with media independence. Media independence has both a good and a bad side -- depending on how one looks at it. It is good because it keeps a government awake and updated so that riots and rumours do not cost popularity of the government. That is why it is said that democratic societies with press freedom rarely face famines.
Events in two countries in South Asia, in contrasting fashions, hogged headlines not only in the region but also in the international scene in 2007. Interestingly, one event took place early in the year, which was talked about as a positive issue, while the other at the fag end of the year caused severe adverse repurcussions.
After a fascinating day's cricket Bangladesh finally imposed themselves on New Zealand and showed some much needed fight that could yet revive a tour that had been largely disappointing until Saturday. The Tigers bowled New Zealand out for 357 and then in their second innings trailed by just 72 runs with all wickets intact thanks to a record 148-run opening stand in 39 overs from Tamim Iqbal and Zunaed Siddiqui. With three full days to go the first Test could be thrown wide open if the tourists can bat throughout day three, a prospect that is no longer an improbability.
Nayeem Islam and Mohammad Shahjada converted their over-night half-centuries into hundreds as Rajshahi tightened their grip on Dhaka at the end of the second day of the tenth and final round National Cricket League match at the Mirpur Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium yesterday.
South Africa successfully chased down 185 runs on the fourth day of the second Test to win by seven wickets, levelling the three-match series with West Indies 1-1 at Newlands on Saturday.
Matthew Hayden batted in pain to give Australia an outside chance of a record-equalling 16th Test victory over India in the second cricket Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Saturday.
FIDE Master Abu Sufian Shakil is in third place of the Masters Chess Tournament 83rd Hastings Chess Congress along with 11 other players at Hastings in England on Friday.
Wari's Anwar scored the solitary goal in his team's 1-0 victory over Dipali Jubo Sangha in the Metropolis Senior Division Football League at the Bir Shreshtha Shaheed Sepoy Mostafa Stadium in Kamalapur yesterday.
BKSP earned a convincing 3-1 victory over Bangladesh Navy in the day's lone match of the Dhaka Bank Victory Day Hockey Competition at the Maulana Bhasani National Hockey Stadium yesterday.
Harbhajan Singh spiced up his feisty rivalry with Ricky Ponting, revelling in a first-ball dismissal of the Australian captain on the fourth day of the second Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Saturday.
AC Milan defender Paolo Maldini admitted on Saturday that he is worried about the European champions' dismal home league form.
American superstar Venus Williams fired a warning shot ahead of the Australian Open Saturday, crushing one of her main rivals Maria Sharapova in Hong Kong with a ruthless display of power tennis.
David Beckham trained with Arsenal for the first time on Friday as the England midfielder tries to maintain his fitness for international duty.
Arsene Wenger admits the FA Cup could jeopardise his hopes of winning the Champions League but the Arsenal manager is determined not to disrespect the competition's heritage.
Sir Alex Ferguson has rubbished speculation linking Cristiano Ronaldo with a shock move to Spanish champions Real Madrid.
The national team may be an embarrassment, but England's Premier League has been voted the best in the world in a survey.
Avram Grant insists Chelsea are not considering a bid for Tottenham striker Dimitar Berbatov.
Barcelona wants to win matches by playing an attractive game, the club's coach Frank Rijkaard said Friday, one day after his Cameroon striker Samuel Eto'o argued winning matters more than style.
Hamburg's Dutch international Raphael van der Vaart revealed Saturday that he will not be renewing his contract with the German side and sees his future more at Italian club Juventus.
Match umpires did not hear any alleged racial abuse of Australia's Andrew Symonds during the second cricket Test against India, match referee Mike Procter said Saturday.
The script was almost written the moment he played on after making 62 in Melbourne when he appeared set for a big hundred.
Ricky Ponting will need to take a big risk if Australia are to equal the world record of 16 consecutive wins. The mark set by Steve Waugh does not bother Ponting, who refuses to be swayed by statistics, but winning matters a lot to him.
Australia's racial abuse complaint against Harbhajan Singh may have given a seemingly nasty turn to the ongoing Test series but Indian batsman Sourav Ganguly on Saturday rubbished suggestions that the issue has upset the visiting side.
Matthew Hayden overcame a nagging thigh injury to move level with Don Bradman on Australia's list of century makers with 29. Hayden's 123 helped Australia earn a lead of 213 entering the final day and he is confident they already have enough to defeat India and secure a world-record equalling 16th victory.
For the first time ever exports of knitwear look set to overtake woven products this year as the country's largest export item, with the industry benefiting from large-scale investment in the sector over the past decade.
The metropolitan chamber has advocated reforms in the country's state-run investment promotion agency in order to remove bottlenecks to investment.
The country's premier bourse received Tk 8.9 billion in net foreign or portfolio investment during 2007, a jump of around 830 percent on the previous year as European and US fund mangers looking for high returns 'discovered' the Dhaka Stock Exchange.
Amid increased customer demands, United Airways (BD) is planning to raise the number of its flights on domestic routes early next month by adding another aircraft to its fleet.
Wary employers clamped down on hiring and pushed the unemployment rate to a two-year high of 5 percent in December, an ominous sign that the economy may slide into recession. President Bush explored a rescue package, including a tax cut, with his economic advisers.
About 2,000 workers have gone on strike at a Taiwan-owned textile plant in southern Vietnam, complaining their wages are not keeping pace with rising consumer prices, a labour official said Friday.
Tight supplies in key categories and rising global prices are making it difficult to stabilise China's domestic grain market, the governing authority said yesterday.
The United States has maintained foreign capital inflows to finance its big balance of payments deficit but any dropoff in investment could end up hurting the economy, a Federal Reserve report showed Thursday.
India's finance minister has called on banks to lower interest rates to keep Asia's third-largest economy expanding strongly amid fears aggressive monetary tightening could slow growth.
SM Intekhab Alam has taken over as the managing director of Phoenix Finance and Investments Ltd with effect from January 1.
Malaysia has slapped restrictions on cooking oil purchases after panic-buying triggered by rumours of price hikes caused severe shortages, reports said Saturday.
Eskayef Bangladesh Ltd, one of the leading pharmaceutical companies in Bangladesh, has launched Aldorin film coated tablet for diabetes patients for the first time in the country's market, says a press release.
Prime Bank Ltd launched a five-day long training course on 'Islamic Banking Supervision, Basel II and Capital Adequacy' in Dhaka yesterday, says a press release.
Reliance Power, a unit of Reliance Energy, plans to raise up to 2.9 billion dollars in what would be India's biggest public offering, investment bankers said Friday.
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is to lend and invest a total of 214 million dollars in China's airports, its first foray into the sector, the Manila-based financial institution announced Saturday.
Some 184 people were killed by law enforcement agencies and 35 journalists were injured in attacks, 13 others arrested and 35 others were manhandled last year, according to the Annual Report on Human Rights Issues 2007.
Educationists at an award giving ceremony yesterday called for building a society where people would feel encouraged to develop rational thinking and make innovations in order to solve problems and improve their lives.
A vested quarter has been trying to occupy nine-bigha land of Osmani Udyan in the city showing fake documents, hiding information and misguiding the court, speakers said at a discussion yesterday.
Phulbari residents will not oppose coal mining in the area if their habitat and livelihoods remain unaffected¸ said leaders of Phulbari Rakkha Committee yesterday.
An urban health center was inaugurated at Shahjahanpur yesterday aimed at providing free medicare facilities to the distressed people who live in city's slums and footpaths.
At least four people were killed and 21 others injured in separate road accidents in Chittagong, Dinajpur, Magura and Thakurgaon yesterday.
A group of students yesterday staged a sit-in on Dhaka University (DU) campus demanding immediate release of the detained teachers and students.
Agriculture Adviser Dr CS Karim yesterday underscored the need for wider use of Guti urea in farmlands in order to increase crop production.
Members of Rapid Action Battalion (Rab)-4, in separate drives, arrested four drug peddlers along with Yaba tablets, heroin and phensidyl syrup from the upazila and Dhaka city on Friday night.
The 25th anniversary of a BTV programme for preserving and highlighting the indigenous culture and heritage will be celebrated amid festivity today.
Progressive teachers of Chittagong University (CU) yesterday boycotted a meeting to condole the deaths of Prof Chowdhury Zahurul Haque and Prof Rezaul Karim for giving equal treatment.
The Jahangirnagar University Day will be celebrated on January 12 with the reunion of former and present students, teachers, officers and employees on the campus.
Jagannath Hall Alumni Association (JHAA) yesterday held its annual meeting at the Bangladesh-China Friendship Conference Center, recalling the golden days at the dormitory of Dhaka University.
Speakers at a discussion yesterday urged the government to give due recognition to indigenous people of the country.
Members of 'Aggyan Party' drugged a grocer to death at Dayaganj under Sutrapur Police Station in the city yesterday.
Criminals shot a kitchen shop owner at Dania in Jatrabari in the city yesterday as he refused to pay the extortion money.
Production of Amon paddy in Pabna this year has been estimated at around 13,000 tonnes less than the target.
Today the people of Dinajpur will remember the tragic death of hundreds of freedom fighters and common people in mine explosions at a freedom fighters transit camp, setup at Maharaja Girizanath High School ground.
Joint forces Friday evening started investigation in rice wholesale markets in Khulna and Daulatdia and talked with traders and wholesalers about rise in rice eprices.
Father of a youth, who was allegedly murdered in police custody here over two years ago, has demanded speedy trial of the case and exemplary punishment to the killers.
Twelve remote control bombs inscribed with 'JMB-3' and eight strong power gels which were allegedly belonging to Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) were recovered at Akhrabazar of the town yesterday.
The assassination of Benazir Bhutto is an attack on those people who want to see progressive, modern and educated leaders in the forefront of politics. As a young man I have taken a great deal of interest in her journey through life as a young woman leader. Having read her autobiography years ago, I was astounded by the pain and agony she had to go through but I was even more astounded by the fact that despite difficulties her will to bring change to Pakistan remained undiminished.
Our mother tongue has a permanent place in our hearts. We paid a very high price to achieve it. No one can overlook the enriched literature and tradition of Bangla.
Recently, I went through the cover story of the November issue of PURPLE magazine. I came to know many surprising facts about our schools--private and public. Many amused me but most were frustrating.
The AL front organisations' plan for agitation is indicative of a fundamental distance these organisations have from the plight of common people, who are looking for nothing more than employment and food, especially after the floods and the cyclone.
In most of the developed countries, forests are managed by professional foresters who typically require a 4-year university degree in forestry and a professional licence to practise forestry. In Bangladesh, nothing of that sort seems to have a place, especially with the Bangladesh Forest Department (BFD)the lone government agency that has lately earned so much of ill-repute due to unbridled corruption amongst its rank and file.
Mr. A.N.M. Nurul Haque, a columnist of The Daily Star in his article published on December 4, 2007 has very rightly advised the government to be serious about austerity to overcome the fallout of cyclones, floods and rising oil prices. It is not difficult to understand the gravity of the situation if we just have a close look at the devastation of the cyclone Sidr that has affected 69 lakh people of 16 lakh families, damaged crops of 4.62 lakh acres of farmland, killed 4.68 lakh cattle-heads, ravaged 12.08 lakh homesteads, razed 1355 educational institutions to the ground, destroyed 1654 bridges & culverts and 848 kilometers of road and ruined 800 dairy & 2000 poultry farms. In fact as days are passing, more destruction & damage is surfacing. About 30% of Sundarbans, the world's largest mangrove forest, has been damaged. Though the total economic loss caused by cyclone Sidr is yet to be assessed, primary estimate reveals that it would be billions of dollars.
Kenya's president is ready to form "a government of national unity" to help resolve disputed elections that caused deadly riots, a government statement said Saturday without explaining what a power-sharing arrangement might involve.
The exiled political chief of the Palestinian Islamist Hamas movement reiterated in a Friday speech he was ready to talk unconditionally with Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas.
Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton will clash face-to-face on Saturday for the first time since he won the first 2008 White House nominating contest and threw her campaign into turmoil.
A top official in charge of Pakistani tribal areas resigned yesterday following a surge in violence linked to al-Qaeda rebels hiding out in the country's northwest, an official said.
International efforts to put an end to North Korea's nuclear programme appeared to hit a snag Saturday after Pyongyang defiantly insisted it had lived up to its end of a six-party disarmament deal.
US President George W Bush said yesterday that his trip to the Middle East next week aimed to promote peace between Israel and the Palestinians and curtail Iran's "aggressive ambitions."
Howling winds, pelting rain and heavy snow pummelled California on Friday, toppling trees, flipping big rigs, cutting power to more than a million people and forcing evacuations in mudslide-prone areas.
A 102-year-old man was setting sail yesterday to start a new life in New Zealand, becoming Britain's oldest emigrant in the process, BBC television reported.
Georgia's opposition complained of "serious violations" in a snap presidential poll yesterday, but elections officials and representatives of incumbent Mikheil Saakashvili dismissed the accusation.
Locked in an unexpectedly unpredictable battle over the Republican presidential nomination, top members of President George W Bush's party plunged head-long into political campaigning yesterday, promising voters a change of course.
Efforts to promote democracy in Myanmar must remain a priority for the international community, European Union special envoy for Myanmar Piero Fassino said here Friday.
Nobel peace prize winner Shirin Ebadi's rights group yesterday slammed the rising number of executions in Iran, including the hanging of a young mother who murdered her husband.
Afghanistan's Islamic clerics have called on President Hamid Karzai to clamp down on a burgeoning television industry which it accused of spreading "immorality and unIslamic culture."
Israel expanded a massive military operation in the northern West Bank city of Nablus yesterday and placed the city centre under curfew, Israeli and Palestinian officials said.
China, which is facing serious environmental problems due to its booming economic growth, will next month launch its first nationwide survey to identify pollution sources, state media said yesterday.
Vietnamese police have arrested a man who allegedly trafficked 23 females to China after authorities received a tip-off from one teenager who escaped back into Vietnam, a news report said yesterday.
Arts & Entertainment
Alak Roy, a sculptor of international repute, with over two decades of exhibitions to his credit, has an ongoing exhibition at the Bengal Gallery. The exhibition titled Ecology of Mind-2 opened yesterday.
AFM Abdul Ali Lalu, once a popular comic actor, is now undergoing treatment at Ward No. 14, Mymensingh Medical College Hospital (MMCH). He was admitted at MMCH on December 27 with high blood pressure, diabetes, asthma and heart disease.
Written and directed by Idris Haidar, drama serial Syed Barir Bou will be aired tonight on ATN Bangla at 8:40 pm. The serial follows the ups and downs of an extended, aristocratic family.
On January 3, a musical evening titled “Onek Din-er Amar Je Gaan” was held at the BUET Central Auditorium. Roquaiya Hasina Neely and Mahiuzzaman Chowdhury, two well-known Tagore singers, performed at the programme. The artistes rendered a variety of Tagore songs along with some adhunik Bangla songs. The show was dedicated to martyred intellectual Rashidul Hasan, father of Roquaiya, who had inspired her to pursue music. It was his dream that she would one day become a singer.
It was a year-end holiday for international pop icon Madonna in the midst of undulating sand dunes of western Indian state of Rajasthan although it has not set off a desert storm.
We may remember that Rajarbag police inaugurated armed resistance against the artillery assault of Pakistan army on March 25, 1971. Memorable are the laudable sacrifices of life of Bangladesh police in the theatre of the liberation war, and the contribution of the devastated force to the restorative efforts of the new Bangladesh government. It is certainly a calumny that the police occupied first place in corruption for consecutive five years in the Transparency international report. We cannot deny the state of acute corruption in Bangladesh. People want criminals and corrupt persons in chains, and the police to perform their duty honestly.
Justice K.M. Sobhan belonged to the class of the courageous and the principled. It is a matter of record that when the Awami League returned to power in the general elections of 1996, many expected him to seek reinstatement as a judge in the Supreme Court. It was an expectation that did not reach fruition, for Sobhan was averse to the idea that the new government place him back in a position that had earlier been seized from him by a military government. Not many men in his circumstances would have acted in similar fashion.
Application of DNA test in the criminal investigation process has opened a new opportunity for identifying criminals but in the absence of specific laws and enough funds to set up more than one DNA lab in the country, the fruits of DNA technology could not be reached the mass level.
The government is yet to take any concrete step to cancel allotment of plots to Hotel Hilton and Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industries (FBCCI) in the city's Begunbari canal area despite anomalies and public outcry.
The prison authorities recently decided to set up jail museums where things used by the country's prominent political personalities as well as infamous militants during their stay in prisons all over the country would be on display for the general public.
Bangladesh is one of the developing countries where maternal mortality due to pregnancy and childbirth complications is estimated at 3.2/1000 live births, is many times higher than that of the rates in developed countries. From such complications more women die in less than 12 hours in Bangladesh.
Cancer is the leading factor that drives thousands of our patients to seek healthcare abroad bypassing local doctors and undertake the hassle of going far off place. Prompt diagnosis of the extent of the disease, multidisciplinary cancer treatment facilities and latest technology — all attract our affluent society to seek overseas treatment.
Patients often ask, what changes in lifestyle can improve their blood pressure controlled. In response, we doctors often recommend that reducing body weight, decreasing intake of dietary salt and limiting consumption of alcohol can be beneficial.
Common cold in children is very common illness in winter in our country. Common cold actually is a type of upper respiratory tract infection and is caused by few hundred different strains of viruses namely rhinovirus, influenza, parainfluenza virus, adenovirus etc. As strains of viruses are innumerable, antibodies are not protective and vaccine development is also not possible. Most children have three to eight attack of common cold in a year.
Reading in dim light will not damage your eyes, you do not need eight glasses of water a day to stay healthy and shaving your legs will not make the hair grow back faster.
For women who need surgery for abnormal vaginal bleeding, both hysterectomy and a less-extensive alternative seem to be similarly effective, new research suggests.