The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Monday, September 1, 2014


News of: Wednesday, 12th of March, 2008

Front Page

Hasina should be treated abroad

Detained Awami League (AL) President Sheikh Hasina was admitted to the city's Square Hospital yesterday, and a panel of seven doctors there unanimously recommended she should be sent to the US for ear treatment.

Find out ways to put lid on soaring prices

Chief Adviser Fakhruddin Ahmed yesterday directed advisers and agencies concerned to find out mechanisms to keep prices of essentials, especially edible oil, under control.

Nat'l Security Council: Make ideas public

I begin with an apology to my readers for not having written for sometime.
As reported in the media, in a meeting last Monday, the chief adviser, approved in principle, the idea of forming a National Security Council (NSC). It has also been reported that a draft proposal is to be placed before him within a month. No timetable has yet been set for adopting it.

Govt asked to bounce it with politicians

Welcoming the government initiative to enact an ordinance on right to information (RTI), eminent citizens yesterday stressed the need for discussing the matter with political players who will ultimately implement the law.

Govt won't pass any anti-Islam law

The caretaker government has not passed any "law" regarding inheritance, Law Adviser AF Hassan Ariff yesterday said, adding that the National Women Development Policy, 2008 has been misinterpreted.

Twin suicide attacks kill 26 in Lahore

Two huge suicide car bombs ripped through a police building and an advertising office in Lahore Tuesday, killing 26 people and posing a fresh challenge to Pakistan's incoming government.

HBM Iqbal handed 13yrs behind bars

A special court yesterday sentenced former Awami League lawmaker HBM Iqbal to 10 years' rigorous and three years' simple imprisonment in a graft case for committing two different offences including amassing huge amount of wealth by illegal means.

Zandal now drafted in charge sheets

The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) yesterday submitted supplementary charge sheets of two cases filed in connection with the grenade attack on the British high commissioner at the shrine of Hajrat Shahjalal (RA) in Sylhet in 2004.

Trial of war criminals a must to establish justice

The demand for trying war criminals has become a national issue and the government must make its response, speakers at a roundtable yesterday said.

Bangladesh's successes in education reviewed

The country's achievements in education received mixed reviews as education ministers from nine countries representing about 60 percent of the world population began E-9 ministerial meeting in the Indonesian island of Bali yesterday.

3 ordinances by this month to empower local govt

The government is going to promulgate ordinances on local government commission, city corporations and pourashavas by the end of this month aiming to grant more power to the local government bodies.

ACC sues 7 top RPGCL officials for Tk 11cr graft

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) yesterday filed two separate graft cases against nine people including seven present and former high officials of state-owned Rupantarita Prakritik Gas Company Limited (RPGCL) for embezzling over Tk 11 crore.

Myanmar rejects Bangladesh request for gas

Myanmar has rejected a request to sell gas to Bangladesh to help the country meet its growing energy crisis, saying India and China are its top priorities.

OIC needs reform, new vision

Foreign Adviser Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury has called for reform of the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC), saying the forum requires a new vision for a new age.

9 DB men, UP chairman sued for 'crossfire killing'

Nine members of the Detective Branch (DB) of police and a union parishad (UP) chairman of Bhola were sued yesterday for killing a university student in crossfire in July 2005.

CA off to Dakar

Chief Adviser Fakhruddin Ahmed last night left for Dakar to attend the 11th summit of the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) beginning in the Senegalese capital tomorrow.

Masterminds captured

The Detective Branch (DB) of police have arrested 27 people including three they identify as masterminds behind the January jewellery heist at a BRAC Bank branch in the city.

Dr Kamal against settling political disputes in HC

Sticking to his guns against maintainability of the writ petition of detained BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia, eminent jurist Dr Kamal Hossain, counsel for the Election Commission, yesterday said that in exercise of its power under writ jurisdiction the High Court cannot embark on resolving a political question.

Second ODI against SA today

Middle-order batsman Nazimuddin will be given one-day debut when Bangladesh take on South Africa in the second one-day international of the three-match series at the Mirpur Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium today.

Hafiz terms his rivals' demand 'unfortunate'

Standing committee-nominated acting BNP Secretary General Major (retd) Hafiz Uddin Ahmed yesterday described the demand for resignation of Chief Election Commissioner ATM Shamsul Huda by some leaders belonging to his party's rival faction as very unfortunate.

Niko official's statement to magistrate recorded

An assistant manager (commercial) of Niko Research Bangladesh Ltd yesterday gave a judicial statement to a magistrate as a witness in the Niko graft case filed against detained former premier Khaleda Zia and four others.

Oil prices near $110

Oil prices struck a record high of 109.72 dollars per barrel yesterday after the dollar hit a fresh all-time low against the euro and amid persistent energy supply concerns, traders said.

Musharraf summons parliament on Mar 17

Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf Tuesday summoned parliament to meet on March 17, setting up a showdown with the opposition parties which routed his allies in elections last month.

Sri Lanka shifts Saarc summit venue to Colombo

Sri Lanka yesterday decided to shift the venue of the upcoming Saarc summit from Kandy to Colombo due to inadequate facilities in the island nation's scenic tourist spot to accommodate the leaders and delegations from the member countries.

Editorial

Rupali sale debacle

After keeping Rupali Bank in hibernation for a long time, but in a state of suspended animation that a Saudi prince was about to salvage it by buying it off, the sale process initiated some two years ago has come to naught -- thanks to the buyer reneging on the price he had originally offered. Having been the highest bidder at US$ 458 million and thus apparently winning the deal, the Saudi prince Bandar had since dragged his feet. Only in December last year, that too departing from normal practice, he wrote to Army Chief General Moeen U Ahmed to say he was willing to pay only US$ 185 million. Small wonder, the government has decided to terminate the sale contract.

New measures on the road

The authorities plan on taking new and more stringent measures towards handling traffic rule violations on the roads. It is a move that should have come sooner since a lax observance of rules and an imposition of nominal fines for violations have really done little to streamline vehicular movement. One cannot but agree with the authorities that raising minimum fines for various violations of traffic rules is now an absolute necessity if there is to be a deterrent to bad or flawed driving or a wrong plying of vehicles on city roads.

Diplomacy, politics and closed windows

Time was when diplomats stayed frenetically busy extolling the virtues and values of their nations in the countries they were posted in. Diplomacy, if you remember, was once a truly high calling, one that established the dynamics of how nations were expected to interact with one another.

Political tsunami in Kuala Lumpur

Malaysia, a country of nearly 24 million people, of which ethnic minorities (Chinese and Indians) constitute 35%, went to the polls on March 8. It is a parliamentary monarchy whose largely ceremonial monarch is elected every five years by the nine hereditary Malays kings of peninsular Malaysia (West Malaysia) from among their own members.

The triumph of OPEC

For much of its 47-year existence, the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has been a cartel in name only. It could not, in practice, control oil prices because many of its members regularly breached the production quotas that were intended to regulate the market. So OPEC generally followed oil prices up and down, as supply and demand conditions shifted. But now OPEC may be the real deal: a cartel that works. If so, that's bad news for us.

Sports

Experiment goes on

A cloud of confusion hovers over Bangladesh cricket team after a sequence of losses in the last seven months. Now it is for us to imagine who is the most confused: the players or the team think-tank?

Razzak enters billion-dollar tournament

A surprised Abdur Razzak was proud to be the first Bangladesh to play in the Indian Premier League (IPL) after he was auctioned off to the Bangalore franchise in Mumbai yesterday.

BCB accepts PCB invite

Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) accepted Pakistan Cricket Board's (PCB) offer to play a five-match one-day series next month after Cricket Australia announced yesterday that they postponed their scheduled tour of Pakistan for security reasons.

Biman, DOHS soar high

Fast bowler Alamgir Kabir piloted Bangladesh Biman to a two-wicket triumph over Victoria in the Premier League at the Fatullah Cricket Stadium yesterday.

Wise words for Mashrafe

The intense pressure of playing the highest level of cricket was evident yesterday when leading paceman Mashrafe Bin Mortaza lost his temper during the Tigers' practice session in Mirpur.

Harris counts on pitch

Was their any reason for Tigers to draw attention towards the nature of pitch? The answer would definitely be negative.

BFF polls on April 28

Football organisers hinted at a united panel for the coming election of Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF), which will be held on April 28.

HK women arrive on March 20

The Hong Kong side will reach Dhaka on March 20 to play four one-day matches against the Bangladesh women's cricket team.

Dimitri first Englishman

Dimitri Mascarenhas on Tuesday signed to play in the Indian Premier league (IPL), becoming the first Englishman to be involved in the multi-million-dollar Twenty20 event.

Buchanan Kolkata coach

Former Australia coach John Buchanan will link up with old adversary Sourav Ganguly after signing up with the lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) on Tuesday.

IPL will have no official status

Runs and wickets at the Indian Premier League's Twenty20 competition will not gain official recognition, cricket's world governing body said Tuesday.

Lawson slams call-off

Pakistan cricket coach Geoff Lawson said Australia's decision to call off their tour over security fears on Tuesday was disappointing and unjustified.

Australia call tour off

Australian cricket chiefs announced Tuesday that they had scrapped their upcoming tour of Pakistan, on the day two bombs tore through one of the cities where they had been due to play.

Steyn can't wait for India

Tearaway South Africa speedster Dale Steyn is smacking his lips in anticipation of a battle royale with India's batsmen in the upcoming three-Test series.

Local Snippets

Youngmen's Club Fakirerpool stayed atop the Senior Division Football League table after their second successive super six win yesterday.

Arjuna afraid of player exodus

Young cricketers may soon opt out of playing for their country because of the huge amounts of money available in the sport, Sri Lanka's cricket chief Arjuna Ranatunga said on Tuesday.

Rumi remembered

The life and works of renowned sports journalist and valiant freedom fighter Masud Ahmed Rumi was recalled by his colleagues, friends and relatives at a function marking his fifth death anniversary yesterday.

Lyon see off Bordeaux

Lyon, knocked out of the Champions League by Manchester United at Old Trafford in midweek, kept on course for a seventh straight domestic crown Sunday with a 4-2 win over main challengers Bordeaux.

Tough task for English trio

Bayern Munich will be among a trio of German teams targetting quarterfinal berths in UEFA Cup last 16, second round ties midweek, as the hopes of England's three contenders are in the balance.

Players back Grant

Avram Grant is clinging to his job by a slender thread but the beleaguered Chelsea manager will be heartened by an outpouring of support from his players ahead of Wednesday's Premier League clash against Derby.

Federer beats his hero

World number one Roger Federer enjoyed a special moment here on Monday when he beat Pete Sampras in an electrifying exhibition match in New York's Madison Square Garden.

Ribery dreams of emulating Zidane

France's Franck Ribery, enjoying a superb season with his Bayern Munich club, said his goal was to become as great as Zinedine Zidane.

Villa looking for European spot

Martin O'Neill is refusing to give up on Aston Villa's battle to secure European qualification but has admitted that it will only take one result to wreck their end to the season.

"Louse" joins MLS

Argentine forward Claudio Lopez is nicknamed "The Louse" but the Kansas City Wizards are hoping to avoid a lousy 2008 Major League Soccer season after signing him Monday.

Ronaldo returns to Italy

AC Milan forward Ronaldo has returned to Italy following surgery in Paris to repair a ruptured knee tendon.

Henry unsettled at Barca: Pires

Villarreal midfielder Robert Pires has said his former Arsenal team mate Barcelona striker Thierry Henry was upset at being substituted during Sunday's league match between the two sides and that he is still struggling to adapt to his new club.

Navratilova is a Czech again

Tennis legend Martina Navratilova said Tuesday she has regained Czech nationality more than 30 years after fleeing communism in the country of her birth to live in the United States.

Kazan sign Milosevic

Russian Premier League side Rubin Kazan have signed Serbian international striker Savo Milosevic, the club announced on Tuesday.

Business

Rupali Bank staff heave a sigh of relief

Some 3,500 employees of the state-owned Rupali Bank Ltd have breathed a sigh of relief following the cancellation of the proposed deal on sale of the bank to a Saudi prince.

Poor governance 'hurting Southeast Asian economies'

Poor governance in South-east Asian countries is a serious problem that is hurting their economies, a prominent Hong Kong businessman said Monday.

Tk100cr 2nd NRB mutual fund gets SEC nod

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) yesterday approved the IPO (initial public offering) prospectus of a Tk100 crore mutual fund for non-resident Bangladeshis (NRBs) styled '2nd ICB AMCL NRB Mutual Fund', the biggest-ever mutual fund.

DSE turnover hits Tk400cr

Turnover on the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) yesterday crossed Tk400 crore for the first time, led by hefty transactions of shares of the day's top ten companies.

Funeral for 2G phones in Japan

Japanese stores took delivery of no second-generation mobile telephones in January for the first time since their launch as shipments of advanced handsets soared, an industry group said Tuesday.

Picky Chinese workers spell end of cheap labour

For decades, China's massive workforce of factory hands and construction workers had little choice but to work long hours in often poor conditions for pitifully low salaries.

BJMC fails to recover Tk327cr from Sudan, Iraq

The ailing Bangladesh Jute Mills Corporation (BJMC) has been struggling to recover about $48 million (equivalent to Tk 327 crore) export bills from Iraq and Sudan for years.

Local firms get $1.36m export order from US show

The Bangladesh companies have confirmed export orders to the tune of US$ 1.36 million and US$13.2 million as prospective ones from ASAP show in Las Vegas, USA, while negotiations with the new buyers is still under way.

Economists see US avoiding recession

The US economy will suffer as the slumping housing market eats away at job creation and consumer spending, but the nation should avoid slipping into a recession this year, according to a new economic report.

China exports fall, trade surplus drops

China's trade surplus shrank in February as sales of goods to the United States fell, the government said Monday, but analysts said exports should bounce back now that winter storms that disrupted the economy have passed.

Tata unveils long distance CNG-run bus in Bangladesh

Tata Motors yesterday unveiled long distance CNG-run buses in Bangladesh as local transport operators are shifting to CNG-based commercial vehicles.

Sino-Bangla businessmen vow to reduce trade gap

Business leaders of Bangladesh and China yesterday pledged to enhance bilateral trade through exploiting huge potential and thereby reduce the trade gap of some US$ 2.44 billion between the two countries.

Malaysian Becomes MD of Oriental Bank

Bangladesh Bank yesterday approved appointment of Abdul Latif Yahiya, a Malaysian national, as the managing director of once scandal-ridden Oriental Bank Limited now renamed ICB Islamic Bank, BB sources said.

Easy bank loans needed for grassroots women entrepreneurs

More government support is needed for easy access to bank loans and license for grassroots level women entrepreneurs in order to ensure their contribution to the national economy, said a winner of the Begum Rokeya Padak 2007.

EBL launches travel loan

Eastern Bank Limited (EBL) has launched travel financing solution, under the title “EBL TraveLoan” recently to help travelers finance their travel related expenses, says a press release.

Uncertainty looms on Ctg customs house automation

Uncertainty looms on the implementation of a project to automate the activities of Chittagong Customs House.

New DMD of First Security Bank

Md Sayedul Hasan has been appointed new deputy managing director of First Security Bank. Prior to joining this bank, he was senior executive vice president of Dutch-Bangla Bank Ltd. Hasan started his career as a probationary officer at IFIC Bank Ltd in 1984.

India, Bahrain to ink MoU

India and Bahrain will sign a memorandum of understanding on labour and manpower co-operation during Labour Minister Majeed Al Alawi's visit to New Delhi next month.

ADB to back shorter-range projects

The Asian Development Bank will overhaul its lending operations and focus on projects with higher chances of success, the Manila-based lender said in a paper released Monday.

Tata Motors to raise $1b for expansion

India's Tata Motors, expected to clinch a deal soon to buy British luxury car brands Jaguar and Land Rover, said Tuesday it would raise up to one billion dollars to fund its expansion drive.

Most ATM services become free in India

Much to the delight of ATM card users, the Reserve Bank of India on Monday removed all charges on using the cash vending machines, except for withdrawing money for which a maximum fee of Rs 20 has been prescribed.

Metropolitan

Biman to close domestic flights except Ctg, Sylhet

Biman Bangladesh Airlines Limited will not operate any domestic flight except on Sylhet and Chittagong routes as the national flag carrier is eyeing to establish itself as a world-class airliner.

'Implement Nat'l Women's Dev Policy 2008'

Congratulating the caretaker government for enacting the National Women's Development Policy 2008 in light of the policy of 1997 and as per the recommendations of the women society, Bangladesh Mahila Parishad yesterday urged the government to take necessary steps to implement the policy.

Domestic violence responsible for death of highest number of women

Speakers at a seminar yesterday stressed the need for brightening the image of police to encourage the victims of domestic violence to seek help from police.

Forge greater unity to establish effective parliament

Eminent jurist and Gono Forum President Dr Kamal Hossain yesterday urged all to work together for establishing an effective parliament through a free and fair election, restoring the power of the people over the government.

Security Service Group won't take licence from DMP

Several Dhaka-based private security service providers yesterday said they would not take licence from Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP).

Announce polls schedule

The Awami League (AL) and Communist Party of Bangladesh (CPB) yesterday jointly demanded announcement of parliamentary election schedule and asked for holding the polls as per declared roadmap.

Hotelier shot dead

An hotelier was gunned down at Sayedabad in the city yesterday and a garment worker was stabbed to death at Mohakhali on Monday night.

No local body elections before national polls

BNP chairperson's adviser Brig Gen (Retd) ASM Hannan Shah yesterday said if the Election Commission declared schedule of local body elections before parliamentary polls, BNP, in consultation with other political parties, would take a stand against it.

Road accidents kill 8

At least eight people were killed and 30 others injured in separate road accidents in Tangail and Khagrachhari yesterday.

Bangladesh's support for Palestine unflinching

Foreign Adviser Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury said Bangladesh's support for the Palestinian cause is unflinching.

Boeing 747-200 to land at ZIA today

The Boeing 747-200, which the Biman Bangladesh Airlines has taken lease from a Nigeria-based airline, will land at Zia International Airport at around 9:00am today, Biman officials said.

Star Campus-Drishty Debate at Sunshine School today

The final round of Star Campus-Drishty Debate Competition Generation Next '08 of the Sunshine Grammar School will be held at 11:30am on the school campus today.

$85,204 Japanese aid for persons with disabilities

Japan will donate $85,204 to Centre for Disabilities in Development (CDD) for its 'Construction of Training Complex for Craftsman of Artificial Limbs for Disability' project, says a press release.

British Muslim media guide launched

British Council yesterday launched “British Muslim Media Guide (Bengali Version)” which describes Britain's Muslim communities, their history, present and future.

Valuables worth Tk 30 lakh gutted in Ctg fire

Valuables worth Tk 30 lakh were gutted in a fire at a spinning mill at Sitakunda upazila in the district yesterday.

Memorial to Nazrul, Zainul, Quamrul to be built on DU campus

The government has decided to build a monument in memory of National Poet Kazi Nazrul Islam, artists Zainul Abedin and Quamrul Hassan and Prof Matin Chowdhury on the Dhaka University (DU) campus.

Two brothers drown in Buriganga

Two brothers drowned in the river Buriganga near Sadarghat Launch Terminal yesterday afternoon.

'A policeman helped criminal Emon evade arrest'

Notorious criminal Sanjidul Islam Emon told CID interrogators yesterday that a policeman, in exchange for bribes, used to inform him beforehand of any drive to arrest him.

'Distribute NIC, voter ID cards immediately'

Former chief election commissioner (CEC) Justice M Abdur Rouf yesterday said that national identity and voter identity cards should be distributed immediately so that people don't need to worry about the national election anymore.

New coaches for inter-city train

The Bangladesh Railway (BR) replaced 17 older coaches with new coaches of the inter-city train 'Turna Nishitha', which will run on Dhaka-Chittagong route from today.

4 kg heroin seized in Benapole

Officials of the Department of Narcotics Control, Jessore, yesterday arrested four drug peddlers at Durgapur village and recovered four kilograms of heroin worth Tk 4 crore from their possession.

CU school students protest fee hike

Students of Chittagong University (CU) School and College kept the classrooms under lock for two hours yesterday morning protesting recent fee hike.

New press club for Bangladeshi journalists in New York

Bangladesh Press Club, a new press club, was set up in New York for the first time for Bangladeshi journalists working here.

Outlaw killed in 'crossfire'

A regional leader of the outlawed Purba Banglar Communist Party (Red Flag) was killed in a gunfight with Rab at Nandanpur village in Pabna's Ataikula upazila early yesterday.

US journalist shares experiences of Iraq war

It is not possible to do independent journalism while covering a war like Iraq war as it becomes very difficult to collect and verify information in such a situation, said Brian Palmer, a US war correspondent and filmmaker, yesterday.

Chemical Society confce Mar 15

The 30th Bangladesh Chemical Society Conference 2007 will be held at Chittagong University (CU) on March 15.

Voter registration closes in CCC area after Mar 18

The residents of Chittagong City Corporation (CCC), who are yet to be registered as voters, can be registered themselves as voters within March 18, says a press release.

National

Empower women farmers to ensure food security

Speakers at a conference yesterday said strengthening the position of women farmers through the combined efforts of all can help ensure protection of agriculture and food security as well as peace in family and society.

Lawyers demand arrest of Patkelghata OC

Leaders and activists of the district unit of Bangladesh National Lawyers Association (BNLA) yesterday submitted a memorandum to Satkhira deputy commissioner (DC) demanding immediate arrest and exemplary punishment to killer officer-in-charge (OC) of Patkelghata police station.

Operation at RMCH suspended

The Rangpur Medical College Hospital (RMCH) authorities suspended operation at the hospital for an indefinite period following detection of a patient's tetanus who underwent operation yesterday.

'Name Rangpur University after Begum Rokeya'

About 100 noted citizens of the country urged the chief advisor of caretaker government to name the officially proposed public university at Rangpur after Begum Rokeya, the emancipator of women, according to a message reached here yesterday.

2 brothers die after taking stale rice

Two brothers died and five others of a family fell ill after taking stale rice with water (popularly known pantabhat) at Par Jamirta village in Shahzadpur upazila of Sirajganj district yesterday.

Satkhira settlement official sued for bribery

A bribery case was filed with the Chief Judicial Magistrate's Court at Satkhira yesterday against Sadar Upazila sub-assistant settlement officer Rabiul Islam and clerk Subhendu Kumar Ghosh.

Sylhet Jubo League leader on 4-day remand

Sylhet Kotwali police yesterday took Sylhet district Juba League chief, also a ward commissioner of the Sylhet City Corporation, Jagadish Chandra Das on a four-day remand.

PBO system to alert people before calamity

A Pilot Baloon Observator (PBO) system will be introduced here to alert people before natural calamity.

One gets life for killing wife

One person has been awarded life term for killing his wife and fined Tk 20 thousand, in default have to suffer one year rigorous imprisonment more.

Tk 10 lakh fish poisoned to death in Gopalganj

Fish worth about Tk 10 lakh of three enclosures owned by a fish trader were poisoned to death as a consequence to previous enmity at Damakair village in Sadar upazila last midnight.

Fire burns papers at ASP's office

A fire gutted all the furniture, files and documents at the office and the residence of Assistant Superintendent of Police of Derai circle in Sunamganj district on Monday night.

Letters

Traffic system

This time I am writing about the traffic problem in our country. I appeal to the CTG to give special attention to it as the traffic situation is going from bad to worse.

Women in ads

A new billboard displayed in the streets of the capital city showcases the advertisement of a spice company. It seems that, along with a television station as the media partner, the company is to organise a cooking competition. The competition will judge the best “radhuni” [cook]. The commercial portrays two children shouting at each other, arguing that their respective mothers are the best “radhunis” of Bangladesh.

Why can't we change?

The season of load-shedding is here again. Incessant hours of interruptions posing troubles at all ends, from daily chores to valuable manufacturing processes. We all know how it feels like to be in that situation. But even after that why don't we change?- Why can't we sit for a single moment without the AC on? (Why do we need to keep it on in the first place when we need to put a blanket to avoid the chilling weather just after 10 minutes?)

Climate change

Warming up of earth and consequent climate change is a burning issue all over the globe and it is particularly so in Bangladesh where the people living in the coast stretched over 700 km are under the threat of being inundated by sea level rise.

Talk show

This morning we had the opportunity to listen to two good talk show programmes. The first one on ntv 'people's tel' programme, the second one on Channel i "Sangbadpatra porjalochona" . I thank both moderators and the distinguished guests for their well articulated and professional presentation on the subject and related issues.

Wastage of public money

I am trying to bring a serious issue to your attention.

Job quota

To develop the country, we need a very efficient and talented civil service. They are the key players in the development process of a country. At the moment, 55% government jobs are filled up from quota and only 45% jobs are given to talented students. For this reason, we are not getting the best students in government jobs.

Anniversary issue

I am a regular reader of your paper since 1992, the year I came back from abroad to live here permanently. I have noticed that you bring out "Anniversary Special" issue every year. Naturally, it contains valuable writings on various issues of national and international importance in broad sheet. Don't you thing it would be a good idea to have it printed in magazine or A4 size. It can then be preserved and re-read and kept in the family library.

Bridge over Gulshan Lake

Presently, people wanting to go to Gulshan from Banani and vice versa, have to walk all the way unless they are rich enough to own a motor vehicle as no rickshaws are allowed to ply the Kamal Ataturk Av. For the distance, no CNG baby taxi is available and buses have to be taken from a very distant point. The proposed bridge will permit plying of rickshaws across and will facilitate walking conveniently. A few more such bridges will be a welcome relief.

Taxing the horn

This is in reference to a letter appearing in your daily on the 22nd of February 2008 written by Mr. Gary F Collins. He has advised a credit system in vehicles in Dhaka which, when exhausted, would prevent the driver from using the horn any further.

Our language

English is a prominent language and definitely a legacy of the British rule. 21st February seems to be the only day when we decry the influence of any foreign language on our lives. Are we really losing our mother tongue?

Fuel & power options

Your business report on the subject (Feb:20) stated that Prof. Tamim identified nuclear power, gas supply from Myanmar and power import from India, as logical possibilities to meet the power and fuel requirements of Bangladesh.

Bird flu & “Goobre Shalik”

We live in Joar Shahara, Dhaka Cantonment. My residence has quite a number of trees where every day various birds namely, Bulbuli, Shalik, Tuntuni, Doyel, Kobutor etc flock together.

Star editorial

I could not disagree more with The Star's editorial, "There is but one 'brand' of democracy - Differences lie in the form of practicing it".

Election and political parties

Mr. Shahnoor Wahid is my favourite writer and I always try to read his writings published in DS magazines and post-editorials. Although a bit sarcastic, his presentation is unique in painting true pictures of a person, a group or a class of people or professionals of our society. His latest write-up published in DS on 4th of March is an example. I put here as it was "Those veteran election-mongers have gotten their best three-piece and designer pajama-kurta (politician brand) washed and ironed to go to the Election Commission (EC).

The writer

Humayun Ahmed is a popular writer and director. In fact, he is a highly gifted writer. The characters Himu and Misir Ali created by him are well known. These characters are so powerful that many youths have a great passion to be like them. Besides this, his films have also proved that he is the very best in that sector as well.

International

Obama mocks VP talk as Mississippi votes get rolling

Democratic front-runner Barack Obama headed into Tuesday's primary last night in Mississippi, a state he is tipped to win, mocking talk of a "dream ticket" headed by his White House rival Hillary Clinton.

Anwar says opposition is 'government in waiting'

Malaysian opposition figurehead Anwar Ibrahim said yesterday that the three parties he rallied to stunning election results were a "government in waiting".

Violence claims 30 lives in Iraq

At least 30 people were killed in another day of violence across Iraq yesterday as US and Iraqi officials began talks on the future US military presence in Iraq.

Sharif’s party vetoes Fahim's candidature

While the Pakistan People's Party was still undecided about its nominee for the post of prime minister, its coalition ally Pakistan Muslim League-N on Monday came out openly against the candidacy of PPP vice-chairman Makhdoom Amin Fahim because of what a PML-N leader termed his frequent contacts with President Pervez Musharraf.

Malaysian opposition to demolish race policies

Malaysia's opposition was yesterday sworn in to power in Penang, one of the nation's richest states, and swiftly announced plans to dismantle controversial race-based discrimination policies

‘Ehud Barak opposes peace talks’

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas has accused a "key member" of the Israeli government of opposing peace negotiations with the Palestinians, in remarks published yesterday.

Momentum slipping on Myanmar

UN envoy Ibrahim Gambari's seeming failure to press the Myanmar junta toward reform has underlined the loss in diplomatic momentum since last year's bloody crackdown on protests, analysts say.

Tibetan exiles defy Indian police ban

A group of Tibetan exiles planning to march to their homeland from northern India were back on the road yesterday despite a police ban on their trek.

Trial against Croatian general opens

The war crimes trial of Croatian general Ante Gotovina, accused of leading a 1995 military offensive that pushed 200,000 Serbs out of Croatia opened in The Hague yesterday.

Political stability priority: Musharraf

President Pervez Musharraf said in an interview published on Monday that political stability was his top priority and a war between the presidency and the newly elected parliament would be catastrophic.

Endeavour takes Japanese lab into space

Space shuttle Endeavour soared into space yesterday, carrying Japan's first space lab to the International Space Station to join US, Russian and European facilities there.

Iran praises Indonesia for nuke support

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad yesterday held talks with his visiting Indonesian counterpart Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, thanking Jakarta for refusing to support the latest UN sanctions against Iran.

Major storm sparks chaos in Europe

Heavy storms were expected to cause more travel chaos in Britain yesterday, with France also preparing for more bad weather, after three vessels ran into problems in the Channel a day earlier.

Serbian govt calls for polls

The Serbian government has urged President Boris Tadic to dissolve parliament and hold an early election.

Austrians abducted by al-Qaeda in Algeria

Two Austrian tourists abducted by Al-Qaeda's North Africa branch are in Algeria, close to the border with Tunisia, where they went missing last month, the Arabic daily Annahar reported yetserday.

35 Tigers killed in fresh Lanka fighting

At least 30 Tamil Tiger rebels and five government troops were killed in fresh clashes yesterday across Sri Lanka's embattled north, the defence ministry said.

Goa leader says police to be investigated in Briton's death

The leader of the Indian resort state of Goa promised yetserday to investigate allegations of local police incompetence made by the mother of a British teen found dead there last month.

China's arms buildup menaces region's peace

Taiwan's defence ministry said yesterday that rival China's rapid military expansion has tipped the military balance in the Asia Pacific and threatened the security of the world's major powers.

Arts & Entertainment

Profile of an iconic photo artist

Though his academic education is in plant genetics, for the last five decades Dr. Noazesh Ahmed has been developing the art that both represents and interprets reality, necessitating a rethinking and readjusting of focus on the viewers' part. Dr. Noazesh Ahmed explores nature in colourful forms and poignant expressions -- more like a painter than a photographer. As is usual with Dr. Ahmed's photography, the images evoke a number of emotions.

Mystery, murder and thrill in “And Then There Were None”

North South University's Cine and Drama Club (CDC) presented their eighth annual drama And Then There Were None, a blood-curdling murder mystery by Agatha Christie, at the National Theatre Stage of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy on March 9 and 10.

Sharmin Lucky: The friendly familiar face on and off TV

The host of the cooking show Siddiqua Kabir's Recipe, Sharmin Lucky, recently talked to The Daily Star -- amid her hectic shooting schedule -- on her upcoming TV show Chandrabindu. Sharmin's warmth, spontaneity and vivacious personality have earned her much popularity as a TVC (TV commercial) model and anchor.

Romance through the realm of flowers

Iffat Ara Dewan is here again with her offering of flowers, vases, gardens and portraits. At Shilpangan one sees Iffat playing with lines, dots and colours to depict emotions and experiences. Iffat's use of violet and red is to usher in the rejuvenation of romance. Her paintings are simple and innocent and at the same time they bring in the feelings of tranquility and joy. Red introduces passion and a sense of turmoil. Her yellows and greens search for eternity.

Seven CDs by Aminul Haque

Audio CDs featuring music teacher, performer and musician Ustaad Aminul Haque were launched at the Press Club conference room recently. Seven albums featuring Khayal, Thumri, Tagore and Nazrul songs, adhunik songs and more were released at the event. Kamal U Ahmed, joint secretary of Information and director general, BTV was present as the chief guest. Nazmul Ahsan Chowdhury, former secretary of the Ministry of Cultural Affairs was also present as special guest.

A hunt for actors and technicians for Abu Sayeed's new film

Noted filmmaker Abu Sayeed is working on his new film Rupantor, says a press release. The screenplay of this epic-based film includes several characters from the greatest Indian epic Mahabharata, such as Arjuna, Yudhistir, Dronacharya, Ekalavya and others, as well as several indigenous communities. The film links the history of 3,500 years with the present day. Interested actors and those keen on being part of the production are requested to contact the following:

Musical soiree in remembrance of Wahidul Haque

Kanthashilan is organising a two-day musical programme on the occasion of the late Tagore exponent Wahidul Haque's birth anniversary. The programme will be held at the Shawkat Osman Auditorium, Central Public Library on March 21 and 22. Students of Kanthashilan and noted cultural personalities will take part in the programme.

Recognition for the book "O United Nations"

Bangladesh Political Science Association honoured Sinha M.A. Sayeed with the “Leadership Award 2007-2008” for his book O United Nations at a recent seminar, says a press release. The seminar titled “National Security and Leadership Challenges: Bangladesh Perspective” was held at the auditorium of Bangladesh Institute for International Strategic Studies (BIISS).

Coldplay working on upcoming album

Coldplay are currently holed up in a studio in northern London, trying to hammer out the details for their still-untitled fourth album, due out in May.

OP-ED

The best companies

IT is often said: "Many people quit looking for work when they finally get a job." Those who regularly read the business magazine Fortune will smile at my caption above. The difference is that instead of looking at the US giants, this write up looks more at our local corporations.

Riverine regrets

THE highway was looking so serenely quiet, with the roadside trees still full of leaves and their branches arcing over the road to lend a shade that soothed the sight. It was the toll collector who broke the spell with his alacrity in approaching our car for the toll charge. He was there again when we were returning. I felt amused that the bridge, one of the three built on the Aricha highway during the Pakistan period, was still considered for toll collection.

Iran's organised reformers

Mehdi Karrubi is the Al Gore of Iran. According to him, but for vote-rigging he would have been the president and not Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The cleric is leader of the National Trust Party, founded after his 2005 defeat, and was a speaker of Iran's Parliament, or Majlis. Even though he is a reformist, he believes that President Mohammad Khatami allowed radicalism to tank the reform movement. In his first interview with the western media, Karrubi, 69, talked with Newsweek's Maziar Bahari about this week's Majlis elections.

How Asians secretly fix Hollywood movies

DID you see that brilliant Julia Roberts comedy movie The Sparrow Becomes the Empress?

Star City

Growing, groaning in confinement

Towrin looked through the window of her room. Some boys were playing cricket on a nearby street. She could hear their loud applause to one of the players when he hit a 'big six'.

Look before you take a walk

Kamrul Islam was out for a late evening stroll amid a severe power cut in Goran. It was 9:30pm and the patchy, potholed street was dark and empty below an overcast sky.

Dhanmondi residents for rescue of children's park

Dhanmondi residents want the illegally occupied park at road no-4 to remain open for children and vow to free it from the organisation using it exclusively.


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