The Daily Star

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Wednesday, August 20, 2014


News of: Tuesday, 29th of April, 2008

Front Page

Free Khaleda, Hasina before formal talks

Leaders of pro-Khaleda faction of BNP during an 'unofficial' talk with the government yesterday demanded release of their party Chairperson Khaleda Zia and Awami League President Sheikh Hasina before the expected formal dialogues.

HC halts Supreme Judicial Commission function

The High Court (HC) yesterday stayed for three months functions of the Supreme Judicial Commission constituted recently by an ordinance to ensure transparency and impartiality in the appointment of Supreme Court (SC) judges.

EC finalises proposals for electoral reforms

The Election Commission (EC) has finalised the much talked about electoral reform proposals with a set of stringent rules for parliamentary political parties, in an effort to ensure financial transparency and democratic practice within those organisations.

Make sure next govt won't allow hartal

Top business leaders of the country yesterday urged the caretaker government to make sure before the next general election that the political forces which will come to power through polls will not allow hartal or closure of ports in any situation.

Halt in recruitment hurts govt activities

Senior civil servants yesterday said the stalemate in the recruitment process of civil servants through the Public Service Commission (PSC) is affecting government activities in various sectors.

2 power projects get delayed for a month on bidders' pressure

The Power Cell under the power ministry has delayed the Bibiyana and Sirajganj 450 megawatt (MW) power projects for a month under pressure from two US bidders.

Ex-army man regularly made donations to Huji while in service

While in service, detained army lance corporal (retd) Shamsul Islam, mastermind of Brahmanbaria bomb explosion, used to pay monthly contributions to outlawed Harkat-ul-jihad-Al-Islam (Huji) for carrying out its activities.

Britain won't back military intervention

Outgoing British High Commissioner Anwar Choudhury yesterday said Britain will never support military intervention or martial law in Bangladesh.

Cyclone Nargis poised to strike in 4-5 days

The depression in the southwest and adjoining southeast parts of the Bay of Bengal has turned into a cyclonic storm and may cross the Bangladesh coast after four to five days.

Ex-MP Lalu gets 10 yrs

A special court yesterday sentenced former BNP lawmaker Helaluzzaman Talukdar Lalu to 10 years' rigorous imprisonment for amassing over Tk 1.75 crore worth of wealth illegally and concealing wealth information to the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

AL places to CA 25 lakh people's signatures

The Awami League (AL) yesterday submitted signatures of around 25 lakh people to Chief Adviser (CA) Fakhruddin Ahmed demanding unconditional release of party President Sheikh Hasina, who was arrested on July 16 last year.

ACC clears Motia Chy of graft charges

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) yesterday submitted its final report (FRT) clearing former food minister and Awami League (AL) presidium member Motia Chowdhury and eight others of a corruption case filed six years ago.

River erosion to make 29,000 homeless by next one year: Study

Around 29,000 people living along the banks of Brahmaputra, Jamuna and Padma rivers will be rendered homeless by next one year due to riverbank erosion, a research organisation working with river and water resources forecast yesterday.

10 grenades found in Ctg

Ten grenades and 422 bullets were recovered at Boalkhali upazila in Chittagong yesterday afternoon.

Mugger stabs army man to death

A mugger stabbed an army soldier to death when he caught the thug inside a school in Dhaka Cantonment area yesterday.

ACC set to sue Saifur's younger son for illegal wealth

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) is all set to file a case against former finance minister M Saifur Rahman's younger son Shafiur Rahman Babu on charges of amassing wealth beyond his known sources of income and concealing information from the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

Chevron plans to complete seismic survey by mid-2008

International oil-company Chevron plans to complete its 3D seismic survey in Moulvibazar gas-field by the middle of this year as it is working in full swing to strike new hydrocarbon reserves in the area.

Govt probe body orders ship breakers to curb price

A government-formed probe committee yesterday asked ship breakers to fix a rational price for scrap metals by today.

3 graft cases against Obaidul Kader stayed

The High Court (HC) yesterday stayed for a month the proceedings in three corruption cases against detained former state minister for youth and sports Obaidul Kader.

Huji man Suman remanded for link to Ramna Batamul blast

Harkat-ul-Jihad (Huji) leader Arif Hasan Suman was taken on three-day remand yesterday by Criminal Investigation Department (CID) in connection with the bomb explosion at Ramna Batamul during Pahela Boishakh celebration on April 14, 2001.

CNG-run bus operators hike fare despite govt directive

The CNG-run bus operators continue to charge extra fares ignoring the government directive, leading to heated rows between the passengers and bus staffs in many places in the capital yesterday.

Asst judges get senior judicial magistracy power

The government has given senior judicial magistracy power to assistant judges as a temporary measure to deal with the shortage of senior assistant judges.

SCBA polls begin

Overdue elections to the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) began yesterday to elect its new executive committee for 2008.

Indian rocket puts into orbit 10 satellites

An Indian rocket launched a record 10 satellites into orbit in a single mission Monday, underlining the nation's emergence as a major competitor in the multi-billion-dollar space market.

Train collision kills 70 in China

A high-speed passenger train jumped its tracks and slammed into another train in eastern China yesterday, killing at least 70 people and injuring more than 400. Authorities were quoted as saying human error was to blame.

UN starts meet to hammer out food crisis battle plan

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon began talks yesterday with key development agencies on how to tackle the crisis provoked by soaring food and fuel prices.

Zardari not to contest upcoming by-polls

Pakistan People's Party co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari is unlikely to contest upcoming parliamentary by-polls, giving rise to speculation that his coalition partner PML-N chief Nawaz Sharif may follow suit.

Editorial

Recognising rights of women

The violent protests against certain provisions of giving women equal rights, incorporated in the National Women Development Policy (NWDP), that some Islamic groups resorted to recently, prompted the government to form a review committee to examine the issue in detail. The committee has recommended that six of the provisions be expunged from the NWDP as it found them contravening the Islamic laws. However, some Islamic scholars have observed that the committee has failed to point out precisely where the provisions contradict the injunctions of the Holy Quran. They also welcomed the policy as a charter of women's rights and condemned those who are opposing it vehemently.

Boro procurement drive

Congratulations to our farmers and agricultural extension workers on their making a roaring success of the boro season yielding a bumper crop. When declining rice production and consequent high prices of cereals are worldwide phenomena, Bangladesh stands out with her proven promise of being a rice surplus country.

Realities of rural life

RURAL households in Bangladesh are undergoing major socio-demographic changes that many of us are not possibly aware of. But this could be revealed from a recent survey of households in 62 villages funded by the Research and Evaluation Division (RED) of the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee (Brac). Since it is a repeated sample survey, a comparison over time could shed some light on the changes of the parameters at stake. I shall attempt to highlight a few of those with the caveat that the analysis or forecast is a preliminary observation of mine alone, and has nothing to do with the institution involved in generating the data.

Upazila Parishads the way to go

LOCAL government, as we see it today, is the cumulative result of years of change, upheaval, and evolution. This is about local leadership, building strong communities and ensuring the well-being of the people it serves, while striving to help local areas grow and develop. In Bangladesh, the Upazila Parishad has been considered the focal point of local government for the last 26 years. Presently, the government is planning steps to strengthen its efficacy with public representative in power with majority and popular adult franchise.

Burma's simmering saffron revolution on the boil again

SPORADIC street protests erupted in several Burmese cities over the weekend as Burma prepares to go to the polls to vote on a new constitution. More than fifty demonstrators, led by some twenty saffron-clad monks, tried to make their way to the country's famous Shwegadon Pagoda in Rangoon on Saturday. Police prevented them from entering the temple and quickly herded them away.

Sports

Salahuddin BFF boss

He was the king of the country's football. He has returned to his loved domain as the king again, scoring perhaps the most memorable goal for even a legendary striker like him in a different ball game though.

Say no to 'positives'

If you were a face-reader you could have easily understood what distress Mohammad Ashraful had just been through. When the Bangladesh skipper emerged from the meeting with top board members at the BCB's Gulshan office yesterday, the 24-year-old wore a look he never before did, even after his team hit lower from lows.

A vibrant election

There was no short of excitement and angst in yesterday's Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) elections held at its headquarters.

Abahani-Wari opener

The Green Delta Insurance Premier Division Hockey League gets underway today at the Maulana Bhasani National Stadium.

NCA crushed within 3 days

Pakistan Cricket Academy (PCA) continued their supremacy over GP-BCB National Cricket Academy (NCA) when they crushed the hosts by eight wickets on the third day of the first four-dayer at the Shaheed Chandu Stadium in Bogra yesterday.

Under-15s rout Kenya

Asif Hasan claimed five wickets as Bangladesh Under-15s trounced Kenya Under-15s by 187 runs in the second round league match of the Clico International World Championships at the National Cricket Centre (NCC) at Couva in West Indies on Sunday.

Zia atop alone

Grand Master Ziaur Rahman maintained his solo lead in the 34th National Chess Championship when he won his eighth round board against FM Sheikh Nasir Ahmed at the federation hall-room yesterday.

Bhajji slapped with ban

Harbhajan Singh on Monday has been handed an 11-match ban for slapping Shanthakumaran Sreesanth at the end of Mumbai Indians' Indian Premier League match against Kings XI Punjab on Friday.

Gilchrist mauls Mumbai

Adam Gilchrist ignited the DY Patil Stadium with the fastest century of the tournament as the Deccan Chargers raced to their first win in the Indian Premier League on Sunday. The battle between the two bottom-ranked teams was a no-contest once Gilchrist teed off, and Deccan charged to an emphatic 10-wicket victory in the first major game at the stadium.

Harbhajan lets BCCI down

Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) felt "let down" by Harbhajan Singh after a slapping incident involving compatriot Shanthakumaran Sreesanth.

Bayern on the brink

Only a mathematical miracle can stop Bayern Munich being crowned German champions after super sub Franck Ribery scored twice in two minutes against Stuttgart to fire his side 12-points clear at the top of the table.

Messi-C'Ron duel: Part 2

The Champions League duel between Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi resumes on Tuesday when Manchester United host Barcelona in the second leg of their semifinal at Old Trafford.

Frank-ly speaking

Barcelona coach Frank Rijkaard finally admitted that he expects his Brazilian superstar striker Ronaldinho to leave at the end of the season.

Villarreal delay Real party

Real Madrid had to postpone their title celebrations for another week after Villarreal's 1-0 win at Real Betis denied Bernd Schuster's side the chance to be crowned champions on Sunday.

Roma keep title race alive

AS Roma kept the Serie A title race alive for another week at least with a four-goal destruction of sorry Torino at the Stadio Olimpico on Sunday as Italy's top flight went goal crazy.

Pressure on United: Ballack

German international captain Michael Ballack believes Man-chester United are showing signs of cracking up as the Premier League title race enters the final furlong.

'Milan bigger than Europe'

Inter Milan president Massimo Moratti claimed on Monday that Sunday's Milan derby will be bigger than the Champions League final.

Ronaldo retains PFA award

Manchester United winger Cristiano Ronaldo has been voted as England's Professional Footballers' Association (PFA) Player of the Year for the second straight year.

Iran may tour US

Iran could play friendly games for its World Cup campaign in the United States after receiving an invitation from the US football authorities, Iranian media reported on Monday.

Euro 2008 Briefs

Briefs for Euro 2008 finals:
CHEERS!
Who cares about the score, as long as there's beer. At least that's what Austrian brewers are thinking, as they predict record consumption during the championship. "If our team wins, Austrians will drink to celebrate, if it loses, they'll drown their sorrows," says the head of the Brewers' Association Markus Liebl. A classic win-win situation.

Lampard back in training

Frank Lampard is set for a return to action for Chelsea in Wednesday's Champions League semifinal return leg game away to Liverpool.

Barca confident

Barcelona let Manchester United off the hook after failing to turn their domination into goals during their 0-0 draw at the Nou Camp but the Catalans are confident of finding the net in next week's return.

Gray finds it disgraceful

Former International Cricket Council (ICC) chairman Malcolm Gray has condemned as "disgraceful" Malcolm Speed's removal as head of cricket's world governing body, reports said Monday.

Gilly leaves his mark

Had Adam Gilchrist been allowed to bat longer, he would almost certainly have broken Brendon McCullum's record of 13 sixes in the opening game of the Indian Premier League. So breathtaking was Gilchrist's assault that he smashed ten sixes during his 48-ball innings and achieved the Deccan Chargers' maiden victory of the tournament with 44 balls to spare. His 109 not out was his first Twenty20 score above 50, the IPL's fastest century, and the third-fastest in all Twenty20 matches.

Mani also disappointed

Former International Cricket Council (ICC) president Ehsan Mani said on Monday the governing body could lose credibility after the "disgraceful" treatment of outgoing chief executive Malcolm Speed.

Hair set for Test return

Controversial Australian cricket umpire Darrell Hair is set to return to international cricket after being appointed to stand in the second Test between England and New Zealand which will be his first taste of international action since 2006.

CA regrets Speed exit

Cricket Australia (CA) expressed regret on Sunday at the premature end to Malcolm Speed's spell as chief executive of the International Cricket Council (ICC).

Redmond stakes his Kiwis claim

Aaron Redmond staked his claim for a place in the New Zealand Test team with a solid 72 in the opening match of their English tour against the MCC at Arundel on Sunday.

Black Caps offer winter contract

New Zealand have announced winter contracts for the first time with seven players, including Grant Elliott, on the list. The deals run from May to September and cover the Emerging Players Tournament in Queensland in July and the New Zealand A tour of India in September.

Mumbai's back against the wall

After a nightmarish start to their Indian Premier League campaign, Mumbai Indians have an uphill climb with injured skipper Sachin Tendulkar still doubtful for the game against Kolkata Knight Riders at the Eden Gardens here today.

Check sequence of events: Dhoni

Mahendra Singh Dhoni, India's captain in the shorter versions of the game, hopes the authorities will check the sequence of events rather than go by what television footage in the Harbhajan Singh-Sreesanth controversy.

Federer's Grand Slam dream still alive

Roger Federer believes his dreams of a career Grand Slam are still alive despite the muscle-bound nightmare of Rafael Nadal continuing to haunt him across Europe's clay courts.

SC dismisses plea against Bangalore

The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed the petition seeking to restrain a team owned by liquor baron Vijay Mallya from playing in the Indian Premier League under the banner of 'The Royal Challengers'.

Business

2 budget carriers take off from Dhaka within June

Budget carriers Air Arabia and Bahrain Air are to start flights from Dhaka in a move that will intensify competition on the lucrative routes carrying workers to the Middle East region.

Continue tax holiday, cut corporate tax

Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) yesterday recommended that the National Board of Revenue (NBR) continue tax holiday facility and reduce corporate tax rate for non-listed companies to 35 percent in the next budget for fiscal year 2008-09.

No Rupali merger with other NCBs, nor any tight monetary policy

The government will not go ahead with IMF suggestions to merge Rupali Bank with state-owned counterparts Agrani or Janata Bank, according to official sources.

Korean EPZ gets 10-yr tax holiday

The government awarded Korean Export Processing Zone (KEPZ) 10 years of tax holiday, beginning from its commencement of commercial operation.

21 firms get Licences to run call centres

The country's telecoms regulator yesterday issued call centre licences to 21 local companies with a projection of $6.5 billion annual revenue from the service-oriented business after 2010.

UAE's Etisalat keen to invest in telecommunications

UAE-based telecoms company Etisalat has shown interest to invest in Bangladesh's mobile and data communications.

BB asks NBFIs not to appoint former high-ups as advisers

In another financial sector reform move, the central bank has barred any former chairman, director or managing director of a non-banking financial institute (NBFI) from becoming adviser of that NBFI, said a Bangladesh Bank (BB) circular issued yesterday.

Coal policy needed to attract more FDI

A demand from the apex trade body has been raised at a seminar in Dhaka for immediate formulation of a coal policy and a massive development of infrastructure in order to exploit Bangladesh's potentials to be a good FDI (foreign direct investment) destination.

Warid, Citycell sign deal on infrastructure sharing

In a major development in the country's telecoms sector, Warid Telecom and Citycell yesterday entered into an infrastructure sharing deal.

NBR warns of punishment to errant PSI firms

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) appears serious to punish pre-shipment inspection (PSI) companies for their irregularities.

Emiratis fear being minority in their own country

The growing concern of Emiratis about being a minority in their own country surfaced again last week, with a senior official warning that it could lead to the collapse of the regime.

Raising productivity is the solution

Bangladeshi manufacturers are caught between a rock and a hard place. Globally the slowdown in the US and Europe means buyers who source from Bangladesh are not willing to raise their prices. On the other hand the increase in cost of living especially food in Bangladesh is already putting huge upward pressure on wages. So how does one solve this conundrum? There is only one solution: productivity.

Finance adviser fears discontent if fuel price adjusted to int'l prices

Finance Adviser Dr Mirza Azizul Islam yesterday warned that domestic fuel price adjustment to rapidly rising international prices could be a major source of social discontent and cost-push inflation.

Women entrepreneurs seek more budgetary allocation

Women entrepreneurs yesterday asked the government to allocate money in the budget to help them with project financing and marketing of their products.

Asian stocks close up

Asian stocks closed mostly up Monday, buoyed by optimism ahead of an expected US interest rate cut later in the week and the belief that the worst leg of the global financial crisis has passed.

BRAC Bank declares 10pc stock dividend

The 9th annual general meeting (AGM) and the 6th extraordinary general meeting (EGM) of BRAC Bank Limited were held in Dhaka on Thursday where the bank declared 10 percent stock dividend for its shareholders for 2007, says a press release.

5-star hotel in Sylhet opens Wednesday

Bangladeshi expatriates, aiming to attract foreign tourists, completed construction of the country's first five-star hotel outside the capital in Sylhet.

Trust Bank enlists AB Bank Foundation as brokerage house

Trust Bank Limited yesterday signed a deal with AB Bank Foundation, a subsidiary of AB Bank, enlisting it as one of Trust Bank's brokerage houses.

Singer okays 35pc stock dividend

The 28th annual general meeting of Singer Bangladesh Ltd was held yesterday at the National Shooting Complex at Gulshan, Dhaka that approved 35 percent stock dividend for the year 2007, says a press release.

Common farm policy is answer to high food prices: France

Regional versions of the EU's agriculture policy for Africa and Latin America would help solve the current food price crisis, France's agriculture minister said in an interview published Monday.

India's business confidence declines

High interest rate regime, appreciating rupee and rising cost of industrial inputs and raw material have together led to the corporate India's confidence take a hard knock.

Samsung group announces massive investment plans

South Korea's biggest business group, Samsung, Monday unveiled massive investment plans a week after its chairman announced his shock resignation from all group posts.

Gulf Petroleum to build billion dollar Malaysia oil project

Qatar based Gulf Petroleum Ltd. on Monday said it had obtained the Malaysian government's approval to construct a 5.0-billion-dollar oil and gas complex in the northern Perak state.

British refinery strike pushes oil price to record high

A strike at a major British refinery entered a second day Monday, pushing oil prices to a new record high and forcing petrol rationing on panicked car drivers.

Metropolitan

Reform police during CG

Legal experts, politicians, civil society members and NGO personalities yesterday advocated for reforms in the police department during the tenure of the present caretaker government as the previous political governments did not bring any reform in the department.

'Nurjahan Murshid fought for discrimination-free society'

Speakers at a book launching ceremony yesterday said Nurjahan Murshid wanted to establish a Bangladesh based on the spirit of the liberation war through her writings and politics.

Ensure malls closed by 8pm

Chief Adviser's Special Assistant for Power and Energy Dr M Tamim yesterday directed the officials of the power departments to intensify their drives to ensure that the shopping malls are closed by 8:00pm everyday.

Pak air chief's visit to further increase relations: CA

Visiting Pakistan Air Chief Marshal Tanvir Mahmood Ahmed yesterday met Chief Adviser Fakhruddin Ahmed at his office and discussed issues relating to bilateral cooperation.

30pc of cancer patients suffer from head, neck cancer

Among the cancer patients of the country, around 30 percent are suffering from head and neck cancer.

Enhance trade, economic cooperation: Iajuddin

As Spanish resident mission started function in Dhaka, President Iajuddin Ahmed yesterday said there is a tremendous scope for enhancing trade flows between Bangladesh and Spain, a major force in the European Union.

Court refuses to send 2 prime accused

A court in the port city yesterday scrapped a law enforcement agency prayer for taking two of the accused in the Chittagong arms haul case to a remand.

Pak air chief meets chiefs of three services

Visiting Chief of Air Staff of Pakistan Air Chief Marshal Tanvir Mahmood Ahmed visited `Shikha Anirban' at Dhaka Cantonment and called on the chiefs of three services yesterday.

CU students ransack two buses

Angry students of Chittagong University (CU) ransacked two minibuses on Sunday night following an attack on a student by a minibus helper.

JCD cadres beat up BCL man at DU hall

A group of activists of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) beat up an activist of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) at Sergeant Zahurul Haque Hall of Dhaka University (DU) in the early hours of yesterday.

UN major dev partner: Iftekhar

Foreign Adviser Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury said Bangladesh sees the UN as a major partner in development.

Delwar alleges cop resistance

Detained BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia-appointed Secretary General Khandakar Delwar Hossain yesterday alleged that they could not distribute foods among the slum dwellers and madrasa students in the city's Khilgaon area as police snatched away it from them.

NID distribution starts at Chandpur

National ID (NID) cards distribution began in Chandpur town yesterday.

BTTB operator gets 3 years

An anti-graft tribunal yesterday sentenced a telephone operator of Bangladesh Telegraph and Telephone Board (BTTB) to three years' imprisonment for not submitting wealth statement to the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

Iajuddin concerned

President Iajuddin Ahmed expressed his grave concern over Sunday's dastardly attack on Afghan President Hamid Karzai's life in Kabul.

Remodel cadet college education system

Chief of Army Staff General Moeen U Ahmed yesterday underscored the need for remodeling the cadet college education system to keep pace with the demand of the time.

Dumping of date-expired commodities begins in Ctg

Dumping of 74 containers of damaged and date-expired imported essential commodities started here yesterday.

Media role stressed for gains thru' female labour migration

Resource persons and participants at a training workshop yesterday stressed the need for proactive role of media in maximising economic and social gains from female labour migration.

Appeal for help

Sheikh Hadiuzzaman
A student of Faridpur Rajendra University College, is suffering from cancer, says a press release.

A M Shamsuzzoha Sohel

A M Shamsuzzoha Sohel, a post-graduate student of Mirpur Bangla College, is suffering from acute exacerbation of ulcerative colitis.

2 to die for killing girl

A court here yesterday sentenced two youths to death for killing a minor girl after rape two years ago.

Bomb blast creates panic at DU hall

A crude bomb exploded at the Surya Sen Hall of Dhaka University (DU) at around 8:30pm yesterday, creating panic among the resident students.

Duja rejects probe report

Dhaka University Journalists' Association (Duja) yesterday rejected the probe report submitted by the university authorities on the attack on a Duja member by Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) cadres.

'Assetless women should be streamlined'

The assetless women who constitute 42 percent of the country's total population should be streamlined at the core of any programme designed for people's empowerment.

All Asians Inter Varsity Debate begins May 7

The '15th All Asians Inter Varsity Debate Championship' will begin on May 7 at North South University (NSU), says a press release.

Sida, Cordaid terminate partnership with BWHC

The Embassy of Sweden/ Sida and Cordaid terminated their partnership with Bangladesh Women's Health Coalition (BWHC) following an investigation into the alleged financial misappropriation of funds, says a press release.

Brac school gets grant for research

The James P Grant School of Public Health of Brac University has been awarded a competitive grant to conduct 'Research on improvement of reproductive health' by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MOHFW), says a press release.

National

Former Jessore BNP MP charge-sheeted by ACC

Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) yesterday submitted charge sheet to Jhenidah Judicial Magistrate court against former BNP lawmaker Shahidul Islam Master and two others for allegedly misappropriating relief CI (corrugated iron) sheet.

FAO, govt officials visit Ctg

A nine-member team comprising representatives from Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and different government departments visited Chittagong yesterday to see the present situation of Boro cultivation in the region.

Untimely swelling of Jamuna causes havoc in Sirajganj

With untimely swelling of Jamuna River during the last several days, massive erosion along its western bank in Sirajganj district has devoured 200 homesteads and over 100 acres of croplands in 22 villages of five upazilas in the district.

Toll collection with police backing!

A ring leader of toll collectors in Rrajshahi city after arrest yesterday told Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) that police engaged him in extortion on a secret deal.

Another bank official sent to jail on surrender

Abdur Rob, suspended senior principal officer of audit and inspection cell of Rupali Bank, was sent to jail Sunday night after he surrendered before the District and Session Judge's court here as a charge-sheeted accused in the much talked about Tk 25 core loan scam case.

Case shifted to Jessore special tribunal

The case for stealing rice from government-run Jessore food godown has been shifted to a special tribunal.

Satkhira YES Group vows to fight graft

Speakers at a workshop yesterday urged youths and students to come forward to root out corruption.

JCD leader held in Moulvibazar

Police arrested Mizanur Rahman Mizan, president of Moulvibazar district unit of Jatyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD), the student wing of BNP on Monday night from Chawmuhana area of Moulvibazar district town. He is also the Vice President of JCD central committee.

Buddhist monk killed in temple

Criminals hacked to death an elderly monk in a Buddhist temple at Mitingyachhari under Kawkhali upazila of the district on Sunday night.

'Robber' killed in shootout

An alleged robber was killed and another seriously injured in a shootout between police and robbers in Itna upazila early hours yesterday.

International

American, Iraqi troops kill 38 militants

American and Iraqi troops killed 38 militants in the fiercest clashes with militants in weeks in Baghdad, including 22 who attacked a military checkpoint in a Shia militia stronghold, the US military said Monday.

Pak coalition leaders meet in Dubai to settle judges impasse

Pakistani coalition leaders will hold crucial talks in Dubai yesterday to finalise a draft on the restoration of judges sacked by President Pervez Musharraf, party officials said.

Israeli tank shell kills woman, her four children in Gaza

An Israeli tank shell slammed into a tiny Gaza Strip home yesterday, killing a Palestinian woman and four of her children as they prepared to sit down for breakfast, officials and relatives said.

Big bomb defused in Lanka

A ball-bearing packed bomb capable of causing devastation was defused at a crowded bus station in northwestern Sri Lanka yesterday, just minutes before it had been set to explode, police said.

Hindus vow to protect Nepali king

Hardline Hindus have vowed an "armed struggle" to save Nepal's King Gyanendra from losing his throne after former Maoist rebels swept elections in the home of the world's last Hindu monarchy.

Millions of dollars go down drain in Iraq

Millions of dollars of lucrative Iraq reconstruction contracts were never finished because of excessive delays, poor performance or other factors, including failed projects that are being falsely described by the US government as complete, federal investigators say.

US working to link subcontinent with Central Asia

Pakistan and Afghanistan enjoy a pivotal role in US policies which also envisage India playing a key role in the region.

Fukuda, Putin agree to accelerate talks on isles

Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda and Russian President Vladimir Putin agreed Saturday (April 26) to accelerate negotiations aimed at addressing the territorial dispute over four Russian-administered islands off Hokkaido, in addition to strengthening bilateral cooperation in the fields of energy, transport and environment.

Iran urges Russia of plan to solve world problems

Iran's top national security official on Monday held talks with his Russian counterpart about a new Iranian package aimed at solving world problems, including the nuclear standoff with the West.

1,000 flee foothill homes as wildfire burns near Los Angeles

Firefighters gained ground Sunday against an early season wildfire that slowly chewed its way through dense brush near Los Angeles, forcing more than 1,000 people from homes in the foothills.

Laos opens secret wartime cave city to the world

Hidden deep inside the jungle-covered carst mountains of northern Laos lies a secret cave city where revolutionary leaders survived nearly a decade of US bombing during the Vietnam war.

Black Sea helicopter crash kills 19

A helicopter crashed into a Black Sea offshore energy platform and blew up on Monday, killing 19 people, a spokesman for Ukrainian gas company Naftogaz told AFP.

Nandigram violence was unfortunate: Sonia Gandhi

Preparing the ground for an inevitable electoral battle with the Left, for the first time, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi has made her views clear on the violence in Nandigram in West Bengal.

Afghanistan needs more US attention: Hillary

Hillary Rodham Clinton said the assassination attempt Sunday on the Afghan president shows that the US has failed to give proper attention to Afghanistan.

Arts & Entertainment

Canvases from across the border

The seven artists from West Bengal who are taking part in the ongoing exhibition "Return to the Roots" at the Bengal Gallery have all had their origin in Bangladesh. As children they have had to go away to India during the 1947 Partition; but they have fond memories of their origin, and at the first opportunity they are here to present their creations on canvases.

The nonverbal language that speaks to all

Getting baked in the National Theatre Stage (thanks to the non-functional air conditioning) and listening to the melodies of screaming babies (thanks to inconsiderate parents) and loud conversations on the cell phone for almost an hour makes one rethink the decision of going to a programme.

Celebrating the joys of dance

Dancers and dance organisations in the country and around the world are busy arranging festivals to mark the International Dance Day. This is an occasion when the devotees of dance rejoice their art with much enthusiasm. On this joyous occasion, prominent dancers Shamim Ara Nipa, Shibli Mohammad, Nilufar Wahid and Kabirul Islam Ratan talked to The Daily Star on the programmes arranged this year.

Mela at National Art Gallery

As part of the ongoing International Dance Day celebration programme, a three-day mela was inaugurated by eminent artist Rafiqunnabi on April 27. The mela (3pm to 6pm) at the open stage of the plaza, National Art Gallery of BSA, features all dance-related items.

Seminar at Music and Dance Centre

On the second day (April 28) of the ongoing International Dance Day celebration programme, a seminar titled "Bangladeshe Nrityashilpake Pesha Hishebe Grohoner Shamashya O Tar Shomadhan: Nrtiya Shikkharthir Drishtibhongi" was held at the Music and Dance Centre of BSA.

Achievements of this year's Int'l Dance Day programme

Former DG of BSA Quamrul Hassan, ndc, is the adviser of International Dance Day celebration '08 committee. This is for the first time that BSA is patronising the dancers to celebrate the International Dance Day in Bangladesh. Quamrul Hassan, ndc, has made it happened.

OP-ED

Revisiting the Dhaka University Order, 1973

THE University of Dhaka has had a central role in our history. Upon its establishment in 1921 it was viewed as an institution which would nurture the best and the brightest among those seeking university education. It became the envy of many in the University of Calcutta for its beautiful residential campus, for its high academic standards and for a faculty which earned for it recognition as a centre of excellence of an international standard.

Transferring regulatory and promotional functions

THE relationship between the government and the private sector is changing due to fast moving global market, and technological and political changes. The private sector in Bangladesh needs to realise its full potential and play its proper role. The role of the government needs redefining, overhauling of the rules and processes of conducting its policy and decision-making functions, and streamlining of the regulations.

A conversation about what's worth the fight

Sen. John McCain spoke with Newsweek's Michael Hirsh about the confrontation with Iran, renewed violence in Iraq and his temper, among other issues. Excerpts:

Intelligent elevators are out of place on an unintelligent planet

THEY are spreading throughout our cities. They are set to appear soon in an office block near you. Someone may be assembling one in your building at this moment. They are a menace and your life will never be the same. I am talking about the Intelligent Elevator.


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