The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Tuesday, September 2, 2014


News of: Monday, 7th of April, 2008

Front Page

Govt to find real farmers for subsidy

The government yesterday directed the deputy commissioners (DCs) to take steps to ensure that farmers are not harassed during Boro procurement and they get quick payment for their produce.

Military dictating no good for country, armed forces

Military intervention in the country's politics and administration cannot be salutary either for the country or the armed forces, former chief adviser to caretaker government Justice Muhammad Habibur Rahman said yesterday.

Dhaka-Kolkata train service okayed

The Council of Advisers yesterday approved the draft of Dhaka-Kolkata passenger train service and sent the Truth and Accountability Commission draft to the law ministry for further scrutiny.

Supply exhausts too fast for huge rush

Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) fair price outlets and direct sale outlets of the food directorate in the capital were crowded with people of limited and low income groups yesterday even though the government increased its safety net programmes to help them cope with rising prices of essentials.

5 cops get life for rape at camp

A Chuadanga court yesterday sentenced five policemen to life imprisonment for raping a woman at a police camp in Alamdanga upazila on December 18, 2004.

WB proposals in a yr on boosting trade, regional transport in S Asia

The World Bank (WB) is going to submit proposals to South Asian governments within 12 months for regional projects on cross-border transport, water-sharing and management, energy exports and trade facilitation to boost intra-regional trade.

Students' misery may end soon

The students of Bakchar Govt Primary School and locals of Shyampur may finally heave a sigh of relief that they will not have to wear those masks to protect themselves from the thick black smog emitted by the scrap and re-rolling factories in the area.

Artefacts reveal rich history of craftsmanship

Archaeological studies on semi-precious stone beads and other artefacts found in Wari-Bateshwar indicate people of this land have a rich history of craftsmanship as old as around 2,500 years.

Akbar Ali for post-poll plan to ensure food security

Regulatory Reforms Commission (RRC) Chairman Dr Akbar Ali Khan yesterday called on politicians to map out their strategies to ensure food security after the general elections.

Moeen gets one-year extension

Services of Chief of Army Staff General Moeen U Ahmed have been extended by one year for public interest at the directive of President Iajuddin Ahmed, says an ISPR press release.

BJP chief Naziur passes away

Veteran politician and Bangladesh Jatiya Party (BJP) chairman Naziur Rahman Manzur passed away early yesterday after he suffered a cardiac arrest. He was 59.

DU to honour 2 language veterans

Dhaka University (DU) will give honorary Doctorate of Law degree to two Language Movement veterans at the 44th convocation of the university today.

Khaleda loyalists plan agitation for her release

The pro-Khaleda faction leaders of BNP are planning on initiating agitation programmes for the release of their party chairperson Khaleda Zia.

Hasina brought to hospital again for eye check-up

Detained Awami League (AL) President Sheikh Hasina was taken to the city's Square Hospitals yesterday for eye check-up for the second time in a week.

ADB postpones funding

Asian Development Bank (ADB) decided to put financing of the Phulbari Coalmine Project on hold and expressed its unwillingness to talk to British company GCM Resources in this regard.

Muggers snatch Tk 9 lakh from fuel station staff

An unidentified gang yesterday mugged the staff of a fuel station by exploding bombs and firing gunshots in front of a bank and made away with almost Tk 10 lakh.

Increase budgets for rural hospitals

Budgetary allocations for district and upazila level hospitals should be increased to provide better medical treatment to the people, experts said yesterday.

EC behind deadline in publishing redrawn constituency list

The Election Commission (EC) could not publish the draft list of countrywide redrawn parliamentary constituencies according to its announced schedule.

Train-truck collision kills 3 in Gafargaon

Three people were killed and 10 others injured when a train collided with a truck at Maizhati Bazar under Gafargoan upazila on the Dhaka-Mymensingh rail route yesterday morning.

Suicide bombing kills Lankan minister

A suspected Tamil Tiger suicide bomber assassinated Sri Lanka's highways minister as he opened a marathon yesterday in an attack that killed 13 others and wounded 100, police and officials said.

Govt resorts to delaying tactics to cling to power

Awami League (AL) acting President Zillur Rahman yesterday accused the government of resorting to delaying tactics in order to prolong its time in office.

TIB says it's Muzaffer's own remark

Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) yesterday in a clarification said the views of Prof Muzaffer Ahmad on rising rate of corruption in the country are solely his -- not TIB's.

Raising food output a must to check prices

Chief of Army Staff General Moeen U Ahmed yesterday said the country will have to increase food production as food prices cannot be controlled through imports.

SQ Chy files writ petition against ACC

Former BNP lawmaker Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury yesterday filed a writ petition with the High Court, challenging the Anti-Corruption Commission's (ACC) right to sue him on corruption charges as he said the watchdog itself was constituted illegally.

CID submits charge sheet against Emon in arms case

The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) yesterday submitted a charge sheet against top terror Sanjidul Islam Emon in connection with an arms case.

German bank to provide 31.4m for power supply improvement

German development bank KfW will provide €31.4 million for Dhaka Power Distribution Company Ltd (DPDC) to help improve power supply in the capital.

Ex-MP Shahidul, wife sued for hiding wealth

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) yesterday filed a case against former BNP lawmaker Prof Shahidul Islam and his wife Selina Shahid for amassing wealth illegally and concealing information in the wealth statement submitted to the ACC.

Cop informant confesses involvement

A police informant arrested on Saturday with two police sub-inspectors (SI), has confessed his involvement with the robbing of an expatriate at Mohakhali in the city last month.

Clashes in Baghdad Shia bastion kill 20

Clashes between militiamen and US forces in the Iraqi capital's Shia bastion of Sadr City killed at least 20 people and wounded 52 others on Sunday, Iraqi security and medical officials told AFP.

Nepali Maoists warn king of 'punishment’

Nepal's Maoist leader has warned the country's embattled monarch that he must respect the outcome of polls this week aimed at creating a republic or face "strong punishment."

Correction

In our report published on April 5 under the headline 'Most high-profile prisoners have multiple diseases' mistakenly mentioned that ntv managing director Enayetur Rahman Bappi was in jail.

Editorial

What use the exercise in semantics?

RECENTLY we have heard three phrases being used by highly placed and well-known persons to describe the food situation in the country. Former adviser to caretaker government and now chairman Regulatory Commission Akbar Ali Khan says we are going through a 'quiet famine' phase. Food and disaster management adviser Shawkat Ali calls it 'hidden hunger'. Chief of Army Staff General Moeen U Ahmed argued he didn't see any crisis, although the food price has increased, hinting at 'panic' buying.

Archiving rules

IT is disconcerting news that government officials have been showing little respect to the archiving rules laid down in the National Archives Ordinance 1983. As per the rules, officials are supposed to send 25-year old public documents and records to the national archives for safe-keeping. The rationale behind such practice is for storing them with care for any future use by governmental and non-governmental organisations as well as institutional or individual researchers. Therefore, as per rule the archive is supposed to be open for every citizen of the country. But, unfortunately, with the ministry high officials showing no interest in following the specified rule, archive authorities are finding it difficult to collect the documents. Understandably, important government documents are either getting lost or mutilated in some storehouse.

Playing up the Tibet card

IT is not for nothing that Nancy Pelosi, the third most important person in US power structure, traversed halfway around the world to fly into Delhi in the third week of March on an undisclosed mission. Ms. Pelosi, the first woman speaker of the US House of Representatives, dashed to the Indian capital -- it was later known -- to meet Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of Tibet now ensconced in India, to boost his morale. Anything that affects the US's imperial hubris immediately sparks reactions, and the feathers are ruffled also in the Democratic camp to which Pelosi belongs.

The prosaic truth about LK Advani

DRIVEN by the Bharatiya Janata Party's massive spin-machine, the media has built up Mr. LK Advani as a leader whose swearing-in as prime minister only awaits the next election. He is being presented as an erudite man, with sharp analytical faculties, as well as a gentle personality.

Rising rice prices in Asia

MANY of Asia's governments and international aid agencies are increasingly worried by the dramatic rise in rice prices in the region recently. The spiralling rise in rice prices, a stable food for most Asians, has also fuelled fears of social unrest if it is not controlled soon.

Sports

Abdullah sprints into history

Twelve years on, Nazmunnahar Beauty still keeps on going.

Ash wants consistency

Bangladesh captain Mohammad Ashraful said his team will have to be at the top of their game to beat troubled Pakistan in the one-day series starting Tuesday.

Imrul powers Academy

Opener Imrul Kayes put the opponents attack to the sword with a blazing 151 as GP-BCB Academy dominated the third day of the first four-day game against visiting South Africa Cricket Academy at the Shamsul Huda Stadium in Jessore yesterday.

BFF announces polls schedules

The Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) yesterday named a three-member Election Commission headed by M Mesbahuddin and the schedule for the April 28 election of the executive committee.

Boys down Brothers

Brothers Union suffered a shocking 75-run defeat at the hands of Bangladesh Boys in one of four opening day Super League matches of First Division League yesterday.

Three get warned

Three GP-BCB Academy players were given suspended suspension for breaching the code of conduct during the first four-day match against visiting South Africa Academy in Jessore yesterday.

M United Alves-struck

Wayne Rooney's late equaliser rescued a point for Manchester United as they were pushed all the way by Middlesbrough in a pulsating 2-2 Premier League draw at the Riverside Stadium here Sunday.

10-man Real scrape a point

Ten-man Real Madrid continue to give their title rivals hope after dropping two points in an action-packed 1-1 draw at Real Mallorca on Saturday.

Chelsea keep up pressure

Chelsea signalled their intention to push Manchester United all the way to the wire in the Premier League title battle by cutting the champions' lead at the top back to two points with a 2-0 win at Manchester City on Saturday.

Roma struggle to a win

AS Roma struggled to a 3-2 victory over Genoa on Saturday to cut the gap on leaders Inter Milan to just one point at the top of Serie A.

Schalke move into second

Schalke 04 striker Halil Altintop headed his side up to second in the Bundesliga on Saturday as the Champions League quarterfinalists beat Hansa Rostock 1-0 to trim Bayern Munich's lead to six points.

Wenger not conceding yet

Arsene Wenger refused to concede defeat in the English Premier League title race despite seeing Arsenal held to a costly 1-1 draw by Liverpool.

Ferrari dominate Bahrain

Brazilian Felipe Massa stormed to victory here on Sunday for his second successive victory in the Bahrain Grand Prix and answer his mounting bank of critics as his Ferrari team celebrated a comfortable one-two with Kimi Raikkonen finishing second.

Zidane to play Down Under

Former World Player of the Year Zinedine Zidane will play in an exhibition match in Australia on June 1, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

Porto's third in a row

FC Porto clinched their third successive Portuguese league title on Saturday with a 6-0 mauling of Estrela Amadora.

Domenech to name squad on May 18

France coach Raymond Domenech confirmed Sunday that he will announce on May 18 the list of players who will participate in preparations for the European football championships.

President of Dutch Football Federation dies

The president of the Dutch Football Federation (KNVB) Jeu Sprengers has died aged 69 after a long illness.

Dunga undergoes three operations

Brazil soccer coach Dunga underwent three operations Saturdaytwo on his leg, one for gallstones. The former Brazilian star was to be released from the hospital Sunday.

Match hangs in balance

Thilan Samaraweera hit his sixth Test hundred and shared a century seventh-wicket stand with Chaminda Vaas to lead a Sri Lanka recovery in the second and final Test against West Indies here on Saturday.

'New ball vital'

Thilan Samaraweera believes the new-ball will hold the key, when Sri Lanka chase victory on the fourth morning of the second and final Test against West Indies on Sunday at Queen's Park Oval.

Serena defends her title

Former world No 1 Serena Williams successfully defended her title at the WTA Sony Ericsson Open by beating fourth seeded Jelena Jankovic 6-1, 5-7, 6-3 in Saturday's final.

Local Snippets

Rajbari and Rajshahi will meet in the final of the 11th Pepsi women's inter-district volleyball tournament at the Volleyball Stadium today.

Press slams IPL distraction

The distraction of the upcoming cash-rich Indian Premier League was to blame for India's worst Test defeat at home in almost 50 years, local media and a former player said Sunday.

Amol & co off to Brunei

A four-member Bangladesh tennis team was scheduled to leave Dhaka for Brunei Darussalam last night to participate in Group 4 matches of the Davis Cup Asia/Oceania Zone beginning today.

Div 1 cricket

Dashara Palli Mangal Samity (DPMS) rode on a quickfire 70 knock by Sakib to secure a massive 129-run victory over Nizam Samsul Smriti Sangsad (NSSS) in the Col Malek Smriti First Division League at the Shaheed Miraj-Tapan Stadium yesterday.

Munaf, Powar drafted in

Indian selectors on Sunday named paceman Munaf Patel in a 16-member squad for the series-deciding third Test against South Africa in Kanpur.

Collier backs English IPL

David Collier, the ECB chief executive, has said it will be very hard for England's top players to take part in future Indian Premier League (IPL) tournaments because of the international schedule. He added that the ECB was preparing to adapt their domestic Twenty20 Cup to attract more leading players and offer an alternative to the IPL.

Business

Pharma firms take to contract manufacturing

Domestic pharmaceutical companies including Square Pharmaceuticals and Eskayef Bangladesh Ltd have slowly made inroads into the lucrative business of contract manufacturing of bulk drugs and formulations for global clients. At least four top companies are eyeing exports of about $10 million this year through contract manufacturing deals with European pharma majors.

Soon, you can file returns, pay income tax online

Taxpayers may soon get to not only file their income tax returns online, but also make their tax payments the way electricity and water bills are paid.

Local textile firm targets $180m exports next fiscal

Noman Group, one of the country's leading textile companies, is eyeing home textile and other garment exports of $180 million in the next fiscal year.

G8 vows to boost tie with China, India

The Group of Eight rich nations vowed Sunday to step up cooperation with emerging donors such as China and India and said they remained committed to a goal to double their own aid to Africa by 2010.

Selection procedure not clear, says bank assoc chief

Owners of private commercial banks yesterday opposed the central bank's move to appoint two directors from depositors saying the proposed selection procedure is 'wrong'.

Alarm bells ring in Europe industry over euro, dollar

The strong euro is ringing alarm bells in the boardrooms of big European industrial groups as they look to reduce vulnerability to high euro-based production costs by setting up facilities in Eastern Europe and the United States.

Of private equity

In the recent years, alternative investment asset classes such as private equity have become increasingly important pools of capital in the global financial system. We have read in the newspaper that an international private equity firm called Aureos Capital recently bought an equity stake in the Apollo Hospitals, Dhaka. A few private equity firms such as the Asian Tiger Capital Partners, Terra Partners and Brummer & Partners are in the process of establishing significant presence in Bangladesh. Private equity firms look for companies in which they believe they can unleash value. The private equity ownership structure is likely to foster a climate in which companies can do what is necessary to promote increased growth and profitability over the long run.

Bogra farm equipment industry needs govt support

Agricultural machinery and equipment producing industry in Bogra is strongly in need of government support, according to a keynote paper presented at a roundtable discussion in the district town on Thursday.

Local RMG unit in Adamjee EPZ soon

A local company named M/s Shore to Shore Textile Limited will set up a knit composite textile and garments accessories manufacturing industry in Adamjee Export Processing Zone with an investment of about Tk 172 crore.

SEC, DSE to hold stock market awareness programme for govt officials

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) authority jointly invited the secretaries and/or managing directors of some state-owned enterprises (SoEs), set to offload shares in the stock market, to a 'stock market awareness programme' to be held on Wednesday.

StanChart closes derivative deal with Square Textiles

Standard Chartered Bank Bangladesh and Square Textiles Ltd have successfully closed the first-ever commodity derivative deal in Bangladesh, says a press release.

Asian currencies lower against dollar

Asian currencies ended the week mostly lower against the dollar but dealers said worse-than-expected US jobs data could cap the greenback's upswing.

EBL bid to raise paid up capital

Eastern Bank Ltd (EBL) will raise Tk 51.75 crore on right share issue in a bid to strengthen its balance sheet as well as to initiate business expansion.

With eye on resources, India to host Africa meet

India will host the leaders of several African nations this week as resource-hungry New Delhi seeks to fuel its booming economy and raise its profile in global affairs.

Microsoft threatens Yahoo with proxy battle

Microsoft issued a three-week ultimatum Saturday for Yahoo to accept its 44.6-billion-dollar takeover offer or face a hostile battle for the support of the Internet giant's shareholders.

Australia sees progress in push for world trade deal

Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said Saturday there had been "real movement" in recent weeks in long-stalled efforts to reach a new global trade deal.

Thai PM warns against rice hoarding

Thai Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej on Sunday urged the public not to hoard rice, promising for the second time in three days there would be enough for everyone in the kingdom.

Opec chief rejects calls for output hike

Opec Secretary General Abdullah al-Badri has rejected calls from oil consuming states for a hike in the cartel's crude output, saying that non-fundamental factors were to blame for current high prices.

Malaysia eyes cut in petrol subsidies

With oil prices near record highs, Malaysia could cut subsidies for higher grades of petrol in order to keep prices down for middle income groups and the poor, reports said Sunday.

Exim Bank Board Audit chairman re-elected

Muhammed Nurul Fazal has been re-elected Exim Bank Board Audit chairman, says a press release.

NZ PM in China to sign free trade deal

New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark arrived here Sunday on an official visit during which she will sign a free trade agreement, state media reported.

EBL gets new DMD

Muklesur Rahman has recently been appointed deputy managing director of Eastern Bank Ltd, says a press release.

Etihad launches Flights to Beijing

Etihad Airways has launched its flights from Abu Dhabi to the Chinese capital Beijing, the latest destination on the airline's expanding global network, says a press release.

Metropolitan

New health policy in 3 months

New health policy will be formulated within next three months to provide better health services and ensure quality education in medical and dental colleges, said Health Adviser Dr AMM Shawkat Ali yesterday.

Keep prices of essentials within reach of common people: President

President Iajuddin Ahmed yesterday said the great challenge of the moment is to keep the prices of essentials within the purchasing capacity of the common people.

AL-govt talks on Hasina's release

Awami League top leadership was learnt engrossed in talks with the high-ups of the government negotiating detained party chief Sheikh Hasina's release.

Help to introduce micro-credit sought

Mayor of Moscow YM Luzhkov has sought advice and assistance of Nobel laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus to introduce micro-credit and social business for the low-income people.

Fresh probe begins

Fresh investigation begins into the sensational case filed in connection with 10 truckload of deadly weapons and huge quantity of ammunition hauled at Chittagong Urea Fertiliser Limited (CUFL) jetty on April 02, 2004.

Lenders, middlemen threaten returnees from Malaysia

Bangladeshi workers, who returned home following exploitations by agents and employers in Malaysia, are now again fleeing homes because of pressures by the lenders and threats from the middlemen, returnees alleged.

Army chief initiates appeal for presidential mercy

Army Chief General Moeen U Ahmed has initiated appeal for presidential mercy for freedom fighter Rakhal Chandra Naha following a news item published in some newspapers yesterday on his execution order.

Muggers kill madrasa student in Ctg

A madrasa student was shot dead by a gang of muggers at Jamal Khan in the port city on Saturday night.

Token hunger procession protesting price hike of essentials

Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL), the student wing of Awami League, yesterday brought out a token hunger procession on the Dhaka University (DU) campus in protest against the price hike of essentials.

Journo assaulted by BCL activists at DU

Two activists of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL), student wing of Awami League, beat up a reporter of the Amader Somoy severely on Dhaka University (DU) campus yesterday.

Vehicles get stuck in gridlock as trucks collide on Airport Road

Hundreds of vehicles remained stranded for about three-hours at Khilkhet in the city yesterday following a collision between a rice-laden truck and a paddy-laden truck on Airport Road.

One robbed of Tk 9.73 lakh

A group of armed muggers snatched Tk 9.73 lakh from an executive of a business house at Godnyle Burma Stand under Siddhirganj Police Station yesterday morning.

BSF hands over two bodies

Indian Border Security Force (BSF) yesterday handed over the decomposed bodies of two Bangladeshi youths, who were killed by BSF 42 days ago, to the Bangladesh Rifles (BDR).

Stolen cars seized, five held in N'ganj

Detective police officials recovered 10 stolen cars and three motorcycles from different parts of the country and arrested five members of a gang in separate drives last week.

Notice of Concern on govt to protect Lawachara

Association for Land Reform and Development, Ain O Shalish Kendro, Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association, Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust. Nijera Kori, Odhikar and Paribesh Bachao Andolon yesterday served a Notice of Concern expressing their distress over the government decision to permit the Chevron Bangladesh Ltd for conducting 3D seismic survey in the fragile reserved forests and national park of Lawachara to assess the possibility of gas exploration there, says a press release.

Trust Bank to issue passports from 13 more branches

Trust Bank Ltd and Department of Immigration and Passport (DIP) signed a bilateral agreement at the former's head office in the city yesterday for renewal of pilot project and extension of 13 additional branches of the bank, says a press release.

Journo Gulshan Akhter passes away

Gulshan Akhter, assistant editor of The Daily Jugantor, former treasurer of Dhaka Union of Journalists (DUJ) and vice-president of Bangladesh Mahila Shangbadik Forum, passed away due to liver cancer at the Labaid Hospital in the city in the early hours of yesterday at the age of 52, says a press release.

BSWJF executives

Prof Dr Muhammad Ibrahim, editor of the Biggan Samoiky, and Mir Lutful Kabir Saadi, correspondent of SciDev Net, UK, have been re-elected president and general secretary of the Bangladesh Science Writers and Journalists Forum (BSWJF) for one year recently, says a press release.

NGFFSAA will celebrate Pahela Baishakh

NGFF School Alumni Association will celebrate the Pahela Baishakh with 'Pantha-Elish' and amid cultural activities at WVA auditorium in the city, says a press release.

National

Treatment hampered as most interns abstain from work

Treatment of patients at Sylhet MAG Osmani Medical College Hospital suffered greatly yesterday as most of the interns abstained from work since Saturday night's incidents.

Suspended KCC chief engineer arrested, remanded

The suspended chief engineer of Khulna City Corporation (KCC) and project director of the Municipal Services Project (MSP) Md Liquat Ali Sharif was arrested yesterday from stadium area in the city while he was on way to his official residence by a rickshaw after testifying against detained Mayor Sheikh Tayebur Rahman in a court in an extortion case.

Rangpur private medical students threaten hunger strike

The students of Northern Private Medical College in Rangpur yesterday vowed to launch greater movement to realise their five-point demand including registration.

Khagrachhari, Rangamati towns to get cellphone link soon

Introduction of mobile network in Khagrachhari and Rangamati hill districts is in the offing as the work to set up towers and other equipment has started.

Bera municipal chairman faces two more extortion cases

Two more extortion cases have been filed against detained Bera municipality chairman and Awami League leader Md. Abdul Baten.

4 get life for killing minor girl

A Panchagarh court yesterday sentenced four youths to life-term imprisonment in a case for killing a minor girl after gang rape.

Acid victim's family threatened for case withdrawal

Family members of an acid victim madrasa student is now being threatened with death by the perpetrators, the victims alleged at a press conference in the town yesterday.

Land official held for bribery

Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) yesterday arrested a land settlement official of Gobindaganj upazila for bribery.

Letters

Food security

According to a forecast by WFP, the increase in international food price will continue till 2010. This should be taken very seriously because it is a potential threat to the survival of 56 millions of people who are below the poverty line in the country.

Birshreshtha Motiur Complex

Many people attended the function on 31st March, to witness the opening of a museum, a library, and renaming Ramnagar as Matiur Nagar.

Mobile network in Hill Tracts

It is ridiculous to see that still the Hill Tracts (CHT) has been out of mobile networks for security reason. However, on 27th March, the Chief Adviser declared that the government will consider connecting the CHT with the mobile and private land phone networks. It is very sad to know that the government is still 'considering' the possibility of it. CHT is a part of our country and the people of the region have every right to enjoy their rights, including access to communication. I hope this government would take immediate steps for giving permission to mobile and land phone operators to spread out their networks in this region.

Biman- what a home in the air!

I am an expatriate, resident in Muscat, Oman for a few years along with my younger brother. We live in the vicinity of the Airport. Sight of Biman aircraft in the sky used to thrill my heart with emotion and take me back to my home.

Zia family

A news item published in almost all the dailies in Dhaka including the DS on 3 April'08 saying that a total of 126 Khaleda-loyalists, former lawmakers of BNP, in a joint statement said the government is trying to tarnish the image of late president Ziaur Rahman's family by going beyond its constitutional jurisdiction.

Missing rail clips

The mass scale stealing of railway clips, a potential train accident hazard has come in the daily news. Meanwhile the police and other related agencies are busy catching politicians, profiteers and such like who, however, are a not in any way a hazard to the potential injury and death of common innocent rail travellers.

Gender sensitivity in TV commercials

We have read recently in your daily about one survey on gender sensitivity of TV commercials. It really reveals the true picture of the situation. Those who are conscious about gender discrimination have been speaking against painting women in wrong way. Now, this survey came with statistics on how people view the matter. It will help advertisement firms and product advertisers to be more cautious in displaying and painting a model's role.

Visa transfer problems in Kuwait

I am a NRB, presently staying in Kuwait. Last one month there was lot of problems with Saudi Arabia but presently it is going to be solved because all of our media highlighted that problems and the government also taken action. But in Kuwait we are facing lots of problems but nobody has highlighted it. For more than one year visa transfer from one company to another company has been stopped. Due to that every month 2/3 thousand people return to Bangladesh.

Inefficiency & lack of proper planning

Recently, while visiting Uttara R/A, I was amazed how Rajuk has messed up and is causing unbearable trouble to the resident there. They are now putting big "sewerage pipe" all over Uttara. This is huge extra cost due cutting of the new roads and causing immense traffic jam and sufferings to the people.

Right to Information Ordinance 2008

Since 2002, the civil society group has been persistently demanding the adoption of"right to information" legislation in the country. Of late, the present caretaker government has responded to their claim and initiated the process. My humble submission, in this regard, would be very simple. Instead of incorporating 27 Sections/Articles in the Ordinance only three Articles would suffice the purpose. These are as follows:

Foreign ministry's assertive stance

I fully support the recent stance taken by our foreign ministry whereby they have cautioned foreign diplomats against unwarranted activities and comments. This was long overdue. Foreign diplomats have been breaching the code of conduct and giving unwarranted comments, having meetings with political leaders, etc. for a long time, but unfortunately none of our past foreign ministers had the courage to protest these. Finally our foreign ministry has stood up, and spoken out. Kudos to our Foreign Advisor.

International

Afghanistan, Pakistan will fight extremists together: Karzai

Afghan President Hamid Karzai on Sunday expressed confidence that his government would work closely with the new Pakistani prime minister to fight extremism plaguing both countries.

US-Russia summit eases tension on missile defence

US President George W Bush and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin claimed progress yesterday toward resolving their dispute over a planned US missile defence system in Europe at their swansong summit by the Black Sea.

The fearful lives in a land of the free

I was given the chance to talk to 600 Muslim Canadians a few days ago. The dinner was in an Ottawa banqueting room and the guests also included the imam of the Ottawa mosque, the Ottawa chief of police and sundry uniformed Canadian army officers.

PPP, PML-N ministers avoid meeting Musharraf

Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf and his depleted band of close aides have been left with little to do after the formation of a coalition government by the PPP and PML-N, whose ministers have been keeping away from the former military ruler.

Mugabe's party demands vote recount

President Robert Mugabe's ruling party is demanding a vote recount and a further delay to announcing the results of Zimbabwe's presidential election, the state-controlled Sunday Mail newspaper reported.

Violence feared as Nepal goes to the polls

The Himalayan kingdom of Nepal votes on its political future this week, but many fear the landmark elections, which could mean the end of the world's only Hindu monarchy, could also end in violence.

Iraqi leaders call for disbanding militias

Iraqi leaders have urged all political groups to disband their militias in a move seen as pressuring radical cleric Moqtada al-Sadr to rein in his fighters ahead of provincial elections later this year.

15 Taliban killed, top commander held

Afghan and Nato forces killed 15 Taliban insurgents in separate raids in southern Afghanistan, where police also captured a senior Taliban commander, officials said yesterday.

US presidential hopefuls seek closer links with Asia

Barack Obama spent part of his childhood in Indonesia, John McCain was a prisoner of war in Vietnam and Hillary Clinton joked she was delighted to be a "Senator from Punjab." All three US senators jostling to win the White House have striking connections to Asia.

Israel reassures Syria, Lebanon ahead of missile drills

Israel sought to reassure Syria and Lebanon yesterday that it did not want a major missile attack drill to worsen tensions along its heavily guarded northern border.

China-made frigate ready to set sail for Pakistan

The first of four F-22P frigates ordered by the Pakistani navy from China three years ago will be launched today from a Shanghai shipyard.

Naxals planning major strikes in UP

Naxalites have set up new bases in Uttar Pradesh and are planning "major strikes" in the state, a top police officer reveals.

Reshuffle in Indian cabinet

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh last night reshuffled his cabinet inducting seven new ministers, including two young and new faces, ahead of fresh parliamentary polls early next year.

Arts & Entertainment

Black and white take over the ramp

Sadakalo arranged a fashion show on April 5 at the ballroom of Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel, Dhaka. Warid sponsored the event titled 'Sadakalo Fashion for Bangladesh 2008'. Radio Foorti, and ntv were the media partners of the show. Renowned beautician Farzana Shakil also assisted the show.

Humayun Azad Prattay Parishad formed

To uphold and highlight the works and philosophies of writer-poet- philologist Professor Humayun Azad, an organisation named 'Humayun Azad Prattay Parishad' officially announced its formation on April 5.

Heritage publishes its first quarterly journal

Heritage, an archive of Bangladeshi history, published its first issue of quarterly journal Sthaniya Itihash (Local History) at the hall of Shahidullah Arts Building, Rajshahi University (RU) recently.

Reconstruction of images

Scattered pieces of images captured in faraway lands: people, places and objects. Tiny bits of reality to full blown portraits of persons known and unknown. A tile from the Taj Mahal to a portion of a wall from the glorious temples of Angkor. From small details to the bigger picture, Pascal Monteil's photo-paintings reflect a multitude of inspirations and messages.

Dhaka Padatik Natyotshab '08

Theatre troupe Anik from Kolkata staged Dwitiyo Bashonto on April 5 at the National Theatre Stage, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy as part of the theatre festival organised by Dhaka Padatik.

Two development theatre productions staged at Natmandol

The forth year students of Department of Theatre and Music, University of Dhaka (DU), staged two theatre performances -- Lal Pathor Nil Pathor and Handi Kutumbo -- and presented a seminar paper at Natmandol, DU campus on April 5. Both of the development theatre productions were part of the "Applied Theatre" curriculum of the BA (Honours).

“Hitlu” on Ekushey TV turns 50

The 50th episode of drama serial Hitlu will be aired tonight at 8:15 pm on Ekushey TV. The special episode will feature 'behind the scene' footage and more.

OP-ED

Out of our poverty arises the call for democracy

IT has been our fate to become acquainted with a variety of democratic practices in Bangladesh. There has been the natural system harking back to Raja Gopal, followed by the British form of democracy. There was then the Basic Democracy of Ayub Khan, followed by one-party democracy. In a subsequent period came Ershad's military participatory democracy and finally there appeared democracy of the Baro Bhuiyans, also known as Bhuiyan democracy or feudal democracy.

Disease surveillance and control of vector to protect climate

GLOBAL climate change is caused by the accumulation of "green-house" gases in the lower atmosphere. The concentration of these gases is increasing mainly due to conversion of fossil fuel and deforestation. For example, individuals are responsible for about 40 percent of emissions in the UK, with energy use in homes, driving and air travel the biggest sources.

Top UK thriller novelist turns out to be an Asian in disguise

TECHNICALLY, Jeffrey Archer and the person writing this article are both novelists. But we match each other in exactly the same way that, say, Bob Dylan's Greatest Hits and an evening of me singing karaoke are both, technically, forms of music. One consists of largely-out-of-tune yelling, while the other consists of, no, hang on a minute, perhaps that was a bad choice of simile.

The real pandemic shows its face at last

THE Centre for Disease Control last night issued an urgent medical alert about a dangerous virus that could have a catastrophic effect on the world economy.

Star City

City does not lure Bauls anymore

There was a time when Baul songs had a strong sway on the life of Bangalees. Musical soirees were arranged under a banyan tree or on the premises of a Baul guru where the audience sat spellbound by the songs' mesmerising effect.

Dhanmondi traffic in chaos again

The street was crammed full of vehicles at 7:45 in the morning. Hundreds coming from Kalabagan and Panthapath inched their way towards Dhanmondi road no.27 only to make the traffic grow longer every minute.

"city express"

The latest crop of quotes from the city's press -- words worth repeating, we feel, for their humour, insight or sheer outrageousness. Star City does not necessarily support the opinions expressed in this column.


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