News of: Tuesday, 12th of February, 2008
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A taskforce of the National Coordination Committee (NCC) to Combat Corruption and Serious Crimes designated to investigate National Housing Authority (NHA) yesterday revealed corruption of the authority officials and employees as cavalier as allotting housing plots to even two-year old children.
The government is going to purchase 5.67 lakh tonnes of rice at a cost of Tk 1,592 crore to meet the local demand amid another spell of price hike in the capital's retail and wholesale markets.
Demands for barring war criminals from contesting in elections and for disqualifying anti-liberation forces including Jamaat-e-Islami from getting registered as parliamentarian parties with the Election Commission (EC) are likely to feature dominantly in the upcoming second round of electoral reform talks between the commission and political parties.
An Assistant Commissioner (AC) of Chittagong Metropolitan Police (CMP) along with two other policemen was arrested yesterday on charges of robbing a businessman's house in the port city early Sunday.
The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) will extend the scope of its activities to look into "corruption within the military".
The government yesterday instructed Dhaka City Corporation to extend its cleanliness drive to all the poultry markets in the city as a precautionary measure to fend off bird flu spread.
Britain and the United States have made it clear that they are banking on the government assurance of holding polls by this year and on the army chief's pledge to steer clear of politics, choosing to overlook some other concerns.
The committee, which was given five days to submit a probe report on the violence of February 9 and 10 on Dhaka Polytechnic Institute campus, hurriedly submitted its findings last evening as higher authorities asked for it.
Hillary Clinton shook up her campaign as Democratic rival Barack Obama overtook in the race for delegates to win the party nomination for the White House.
The Supreme Court (SC) will hear today the government appeal against the landmark High Court verdict on Wednesday that quashed the 2.99 crore-extortion case against former prime minister Sheikh Hasina and also declared illegal bringing the case under the Emergency Power Rules.
A total of 252 alleged corrupt officials of Titas Gas Transmission and Distribution Ltd were transferred yesterday.
Four members of the BNP Standing Committee have alleged that two 'unknown persons' had made them sign a resolution at a meeting on October 29 last year appointing Saifur Rahman acting chairperson of the party and Major (retd) Hafizuddin Ahmed acting secretary general, replacing Khandaker Delwar Hossain.
Detained Awami League (AL) President Sheikh Hasina yesterday collapsed at the sub-jail on the Jatiya Sangshad Bhaban premises due to high blood pressure.
Four members of a family received severe burn injuries as criminals threw acid on them at Ganeshpur village of Kaliganj upazila Sunday night.
Financial assistance, technological cooperation and technology transfer to assist Bangladesh adapt to climate change should be the European Union's (EU) priority, according to a member of European Parliament temporary committee on climate change.
The government is set to take legal measures against the construction company that built the Jamuna Bridge, as cracks have developed and started to widen within ten years of its construction.
German Ambassador Frank Meyke yesterday said the time is right for the courageous politicians to institutionally reform their parties to make sure that democracy is sustainable after the elections.
The government yesterday approved two new export-processing zones (EPZs) at Munshiganj and Feni to accommodate around 250 foreign investors.
Unidentified abductors yesterday released an official of Brac after realising a ransom of Tk 2 lakh from his family in Kawkhali upazila in Rangamati.
The Indian government has declared 14 river projects including those involving the Teesta river as national assets to harness drinking water, irrigation and hydropower potential.
Car bombs and gunmen struck new US allies, police and civilians Sunday and Monday in northern Iraq, killing as many as 64 people. The spate of attacks came even as the American military released a captured diary and another document they say show al-Qaeda in Iraq cracking under a Sunni revolt against its brutal tactics.
East Timor's president was admitted to an Australian hospital yesterday in critical condition after rebels shot and wounded him during what officials called a failed coup attempt.
The Pentagon has charged six detainees at Guantanamo Bay with murder and war crimes in connection with the Sept 11 terror attacks, and officials said yesterday the United States will seek the death penalty.
EC's decision to start the second round of talks on electoral reforms with the political parties is indeed very welcome.
The clashes between the activists of Bangladesh Chhatra League and Islami Chhatra Shibir at the Dhaka Polytechnic Institute on Sunday, which left at least 40 students injured, are a sad reminder of the violent nature of campus politics that severely disrupts normal academic activities from time to time.
People worldwide -- and indeed, most Americans -- are under the impression that whichever party candidate has the most delegates at the end of the primary elections is assured the party nomination for president. And who can blame them?
The international community is stepping up pressure on Burma's military regime to introduce economic and political change as soon as possible. At the same time the United Nations envoy to Burma, Ismail Gambari and the European Union are pressing the Asian nations to intervene and encourage the junta to listen to the international appeals for reform.
Last year was one of Afghanistan's bloodiest since the end of Taliban rule in 2001. The embattled Afghan president, speaking with Newsweek's Lally Weymouth on the sidelines of the economic conference in Davos, complained of Pakistani "complicity" with the resurgent rebels but said he saw a new seriousness about fighting Islamist terrorists from Pakistan's isolated ruler, Pervez Musharraf. Karzai also called the Bush administration surprisingly understanding about his government's warm ties with Iran -- and hinted that he might run for another term in 2009.
Weymouth: How are the Taliban affecting you in Afghanistan?
Karzai: By trying to prevent progress, by trying to prevent reconstruction, by killing our people, by (preventing) our children in southern Afghanistan from going to school, by killing the community leaders, the religious leaders, intimidating cultural leaders. By all the means.
Despite the Tigers looking pale in their batting in the practice matches, captain Mohammad Ashraful understands that his side is close to getting an outcome from the new idea.
Egypt retained their African Nations Cup crown here Sunday when Mohamed Aboutraika scored the only goal in a 1-0 win over Cameroon which also deli-vered a record sixth title.
After a week of wrangling, South African coach Mickey Arthur got the squad he wanted for this month's tour of Bangladesh.
Cricket Committee of Dhaka Metropolis (CCDM) decided yesterday that the Twenty20 tournament involving the Premier League clubs will kick off on February 14.
The National Sports Council (NSC) is contemplating to hold the Independence Cup football tournament next month to commemorate the country's Independence Day.
Another cellular company got involved with cricket when Warid Telecom was named as the title sponsor for the Bangladesh-South Africa Test and one-day series.
Bangladesh Under-19s got off a confident start when they outclassed Malaysia Under-19 by 167 runs in the first warm-up game at the Royal Military Academy ground in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.
SA Sultan returned from a two-month long hibernation to show interest to continue as president of Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF).
India, at the halfway mark of their CB Series campaign, have the edge over Sri Lanka, whom they meet at the Manuka Oval on Tuesday. India completed a strong victory against Australia at the MCG, while Sri Lanka suffered a 128-run defeat to the same opponents last week.
New Zealand are expecting an English backlash in their second one-day cricket international here Tuesday after pulling off an upset victory in the series opener.
Arsenal were left two points clear at the top of the Premier League table as rivals Manchester United and Chelsea both dropped vital points on Sunday.
Real Madrid bounced back from their Almeria defeat with a resounding 7-0 victory over Valladolid on Sunday to surge eight points clear at the top of the Spanish first division.
Top seed Anna Chakvetadze of Russia claimed her seventh WTA title on Sunday, beating Hungary's Agnes Szavay in three sets at the Paris Indoor Open.
Manchester United's Michael Carrick insisted the race for the Premier League was still on after his side's shock 2-1 loss to Manchester City here at Old Trafford.
Champions Egypt supplied five of the 2008 Nations Cup all-stars team chosen by African Football Confederation officials and released Sunday.
Former Italy manager Giovanni Trapattoni is set to succeed Steve Staunton as the new manger of the Republic of Ireland, according to an Irish newspaper report Monday.
Gabon international player Guy Tchingoma dropped dead at the end of a league game here at the weekend, L'Union newspaper reported on Monday.
Leading scorers in the Spanish first division after the weekend's matches:
Sydney FC are to hold talks with their costly Brazilian midfielder Juninho amid speculation he could be on his way after the former champions' early exit from Australia's A-League finals.
Sunrise Krira Chakra of Noakhali have shown their interest to participate in the second B. League, which is expected to kick off on April 15.
The heating system at the National Swimming Complex in Mirpur has finally become workable after being out of order for nearly 18 years.
Grand Master Abdullah Al Rakib came out 55th in the International Chess Festival in Moscow on Sunday.
Victoria Sporting Club opened up a comfortable three-point lead atop the Senior Division Football League table when they defeated contenders Jatrabari Krira Chakra 2-1 yesterday.
Breaking his silence over his omission from India's ODI team, Sourav Ganguly on Monday said that it was "disappointing" because his one-day record is next best after Sachin Tendulkar, but he had "accepted" the selectors' decision.
India dared to attack the Australians and it produced the tussle of the season. The hosts met blow with blow, creating a gripping contest between two committed and well-matched pugilists.
Fast bowler Stuart Clark Monday said Australia were desperate to show they were still the world's best after taunts from tri-series rivals India and Sri Lanka.
Former Australian captain Ian Chappell has lauded India for matching up to Ricky Ponting's world champion side in the ongoing one-day series, saying the visitors have spiced up the tri-nation tournament with their competitiveness.
Indian player Tirumorti Vishwajit defeated Bangladesh's Rakibul Alam 6-3, 6-0 in a qualifying match of the ITF Junior Tennis World Ranking (Group-3) at the National Tennis Complex in Ramna yesterday.
Parash clinched double crown in the Islami Bank 28th National Badminton Championships, claiming the men's singles and double titles at the Woodenfloor Gymnasium yesterday.
Bayern Munich manager Uli Hoeness rued his side's missed penalty chance after Werder Bremen made sure of a share of the spoils at the Allianz Arena on Sunday.
Australian Open champion Novak Djokovic suffered a dramatic on-court collapse as he failed in his brave bid to rescue Serbia's Davis Cup dream against Russia on Sunday.
AC Milan were indebted to another 18-year-old hotshot to keep them in touch with the Champions League qualifying spots on Sunday while city rivals Inter maintained their iron grip at the top.
Mamadou Niang marked his return to club football by launching Marseille on their way to a crucial 2-0 derby win over Nice on Sunday.
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was the first of thousands of fans to welcome the national football team home in Cairo on Monday after their record-breaking conquest of the African Nations Cup.
Spaniard Javier Clemente has accepted the post of national football coach of Iran, officials here said Monday, ending months of uncertainty over who would take charge of one of Asia's heavyweight teams.
North and South Korea are in dispute over national anthems and flags in advance of a rare football match in Pyongyang next month, a report said Monday.
Two of the country's long distant bus companies, Saudia and S Alam, have joined together to bring 100 Mercedes' Benz coaches worth around Tk150 crore to Bangladesh as the battle for luxury class passengers on the country's main highways intensifies.
The government yesterday approved two new export-processing zones (EPZ) at Munshiganj and Feni to accommodate around 250 foreign investors.
RMG (ready made garments) workers have demanded increase in their minimum wage and protection of trade union rights, while owners asked for a halt to the culture of violence in order to resolve the current unrest in the sector.
Bangladesh's chances to get duty-free access to the US market largely depend on how Bangladesh addresses issues such as democracy, labour rights and human rights, Commerce Adviser Hossain Zillur Rahman said yesterday.
The much-delayed Tk542crore network expansion project of Teletalk was finally approved by the company's board yesterday with the state-run mobile phone operator aiming to double its customers by the end of 2008.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and Citi, a leading global financial services institution, have closed a US$ 22 million term financing to support Brac's micro-lending in Bangladesh.
A spinning and cotton mill in Sirajganj went into production yesterday with an investment of Tk 61 crore and an estimated output target of 16,000 pounds cotton thread per day.
A number of Saudi teams, both from the public and private sectors, arriveed in Dhaka yesterday to recruit medical specialists and consultants from Bangladesh.
The Power Division of the Ministry of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources has convened a two-day conference of aspirant bidders for 450MW Bibiyana power plant, beginning in the city today.
Dr Wolfgang Hapke, president, Market and Business Development, Asia Pacific, BASF East Asia Regional Headquarters Ltd, Hong Kong, is expected to arrive in Dhaka today on a two-day visit.
World stocks dropped Monday, with heavy losses in Asia, after top finance ministers warned that the global economy faced growing threats from a US housing slump and squeeze on credit, dealers said.
Foreign budget air carriers, which have poor safety records, will be banned from operating flights in Korea within the year, the Transportation Ministry said on Sunday.
The Economy, Trade and Industry Ministry plans to expand the nation's environment-focused business sector to about 83 trillion yen (US$772.88 billion) in 2015, from 59 trillion yen ($549.47 billion) in 2005, sources said.
M Shah Alam has been promoted to the post of deputy managing director of Phoenix Finance & Investments Ltd (PFIL), says a press release.
The dollar slid against the euro and yen on Monday after finance chiefs from the world's richest nations warned of slowing global economic growth.
Cybercrime foundations and best practices event for public sector officials in Bangladesh was organised by Microsoft on Sunday, says a press release.
Expressing concern over health and environmental hazards caused by indiscriminate dumping of solid wastes, urban planners yesterday suggested incorporating the issue in the national policies and framing stringent laws to ensure urban sanitation.
The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) yesterday accepted the statement of wealth submitted by AL presidium member Syeda Sajeda Chowdhury although it had earlier refused to accept the statement.
Speakers at a roundtable yesterday urged the government to reduce the amount of quota in the BCS examinations to a reasonable level and ensure merit-based appointment for the sake of proper development of the country.
A Pakistani minister yesterday said he had discovered an alleged Indian spy who has languished on death row in Pakistan for the last three and a half decades.
A devastating fire burnt a garment factory at Dapa Idrakpur in Fatullah apparel hub yesterday, causing a colossal loss to the export industry.
A Dhaka court yesterday sent detained former BNP lawmaker and General Secretary of Jatiyatabadi Jubo Dal Syed Moazzem Hossain Alal to jail in a case filed against him for breaking the Emergency Power Rules (EPR).
Bangladesh Kalyan Party (BKP) yesterday called on the government to declare specific date for the general elections in order to dispel confusion in the public's mind.
The government is going to start widespread advocacy programmes to create awareness among the overseas job seekers realising the fact that lack of awareness about foreign jobs and employment conditions lead to various problems.
At least four people were killed and 17 others injured in separate road accidents in Comilla and Rajshahi yesterday.
Two US Interagency Assessment Teams (IAT) have completed cyclone Sidr damage assessments in five upazilas in Khulna and Barisal Divisions.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will respond to questions from children and youth around the world in a new feature on the UN Cyberschoolbus (www.cyberschoolbus.un.org) titled 'Ask the Secretary-General', says a press release.
Visiting British-Bangladeshi Member of the House of Lords Baroness Pola Uddin appreciated the caretaker government's performance in handling the aftereffects of super-cyclone Sidr in the coastal belt.
An injured trader died several hours after he was shot and stabbed by unidentified criminals in Narayanganj on Sunday night.
The Department of Environmental Science and Management of North South University (NSU) and Natural Resources Institute, University of Manitoba, Canada jointly organised a workshop on 'Curriculum development of masters programme in resource and environmental management' on NSU Campus in the city yesterday, says a press release.
An earthquake was felt yesterday at the Dhaka Seismic Centre at Agargaon at 03 hours 02 minutes and 50.86 seconds Bangladesh Standard Time.
The two-day central annual congregation of the Ahle Hadit Andolan, Bangladesh will be held on February 28 and 29 at Naodapara in Rajshahi instead of February 14 and 15 due to unavoidable circumstances, says a press release.
A special court yesterday sentenced former administrative officer of Prime Minister's Office (PMO) MM Ahsan Habib to three years' rigorous imprisonment and the owner of Bengal Consultant, Ahmed Mirza Khabir, to two years' rigorous imprisonment in a bribery case.
The Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) yesterday seized 2,318 cans of soybean and mustard oil having no BSTI approval from the city's East Rampura yesterday.
Army personnel detained three of their civil staffs on charge of taking bribe and handed over them to Kafrul police last night.
One person was awarded death sentence for killing his wife for dowry in 2004.
Short supply of fertiliser is affecting cultivation of Irri-Boro and rabi crops in Sidr affected 11 district in Barisal region.
Inspector General of Police (IGP) Noor Muhammad yesterday said a policeman 'must' loose his job if a person is arrested in a false case.
Leaders and activists of different socio-political organisations and freedom fighters in Kalaroa upazila in a joint statement yesterday urged the caretaker government to ensure preservation of freedom fighters' quota in all job sectors including Bangladesh Civil Service.
Police seized spurious medicines and machinery worth about Tk 50 lakh from a clandestine medicine factory in Pabna Sadar upazila and on Sunday night.
Rangpur Unnayan Parishadd and Rangpur Bar Council in separate programmes yesterday hailed the caretaker government's decision to set up a university in Rangpur.
Agitating Bangladeshi workers of Barapukuria Coal Mine Company Ltd (BCMCL) have finally withdrawn their 66 hours strike following acceptance of their seven-point demand.
Kishoreganj Detective Branch (DB) of police arrested ex-secretary of Kishoreganj Municipal BNP Ismail Hossain Madhu at Kishoreganj jail gate when he was getting release on bail on Sunday night.
Speakers at a discussion on the occasion of Saraswati Puja yesterday urged the Rajshahi University authorities to immediately construct a full-fledged puja mandop on the premises of Motiher Hall to facilitate teachers, students and staff belonging to Hindu community worship.
Sheikh Kamrul Islam Rois, a close associate of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and an organiser of freedom fighters during the Liberation War, died at Renesa Hospital in the capital yesterday. He was 68.
Khulna Press Club and Khulna Metropolitan Union of Journalists separately observed the third death anniversary of journalist Sheikh Belaluddin Ahmed yesterday.
A suicide car bomber killed an election candidate and nine other people in northwest Pakistan yesterday, fuelling fears about the increasingly bloody campaign for key national polls in a week's time.
A top Israeli minister said on Monday the Jewish state was not aiming for a peace treaty with the Palestinians this year, but only a declaration of principles.
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said yesterday the West was only "playing with pieces of paper" in its pressure over Iran's nuclear programme and launched a bitter tirade against his domestic opponents.
Mike Huckabee may still be a long shot in the race for the Republican presidential nomination, but his weekend victories in Kansas and Louisiana proved he is likely to be a thorn in the side of frontrunner John McCain for some time to come.
Pakistani security forces killed a top figure in the Taliban militia fighting US and Nato forces in Afghanistan and captured four other militants yesterday, a military official said.
Nepal has renamed the airport that serves as the gateway to Mount Everest after late pioneer climbers Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary, the country's tourism minister said yesterday.
Pro-democracy activists in Myanmar yesterday warned the ruling junta could unleash a new wave of violence to ensure victory in a constitutional referendum, urging voters to reject the regime's charter.
A US army sniper was on Sunday sentenced to 10 years in prison after being convicted of killing an unarmed Iraqi civilian and planting a rifle on his body, the American military said.
Bollywood superstar Sanjay Dutt, jailed last year for illegal weapons possession and links to Mumbai's underworld, has tied the knot with his long-time girlfriend while out on bail, a friend said.
Taliban supremo Mullah Mohammad Omar has urged the international community to distance itself from the United States' campaign in Afghanistan, a militant spokesman said yesterday.
Millions of people braved China's overcrowded transport networks yesterday as they began the long trek back to work at the end of the Lunar New Year holiday, amid warnings of more chaos due to bad weather.
The suspected accomplice of an Indian doctor arrested over a massive illegal kidney transplant racket surrendered to police yesterday, officials said.
Arts & Entertainment
DEVDAS Chakraborty, one of the pioneering artists of the country who had made remarkable contribution to creating a movement in the field of fine arts in the 1950s, passed away recently.
Though it is said that the neo-theatre movement is one of the most remarkable achievements in the post-Liberation War Bangladesh, researcher Rahman Chowdhury in his paper titled Rajnoitik Natyachinta O Swadhinota Poroborti Bangladesher Mancho Natok has presented the failures of the theatre movement.
As part of the ongoing theatre festival arranged by Samay Shangskritik Goshthi, Theatre will stage Meraj Fakirer Maa at the National Theatre Stage today.
Amar Desh Pathak Mela in association with Shahin Shikkha Paribar, Tangail organised a Pitha Utshob at the Shaheed Smrity Poura Udyan in the town recently.
Trapped half a world away by the place she promised to never “go, go, go,” a vibrant, exuberant Amy Winehouse dominated the Grammys last Sunday night, winning five awards and delivering a defiant performance of her autobiographical hit Rehab via satellite from London.
AT the moment, the political scenario is volatile. In which form politics will ultimately settle down is yet to be seen. Transitional phases are crucial. In that consideration the country is passing through a critical time politically.
THE five-day second conference of the states that are parties to the UN Convention against Corruption that concluded in Bali, Indonesia, on February 1 has brought a greater understanding of countries' capacities and needs as a result of the self-assessment. The methodology used has, thus, been tested and proven successful, which allows for more focused implementation.
WHILE economic gains may be sufficient in themselves -- assuming a reasonably fair distribution of those gains -- to improve conditions in health and education, the opposite tends to happen with transport. Market economies support transport investments and infrastructure that actually lead to worsening traffic conditions, and richer cities tend to suffer from bigger transport problems -- including more traffic congestion, pollution, and injuries and deaths from road crashes -- than poorer cities.