The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Thursday, November 27, 2014


News of: Friday, 4th of July, 2008

Front Page

Saarc nations vow to fight climate fallout

Ministers from eight Saarc countries yesterday declared they will work together to build regional capacity for mitigating the impacts of climate change, and consult each other before international negotiations.

Grassroots leaders gear up for polls

Amid a festive mood, local-level leaders of major political parties filed applications seeking candidacy in the August 4 polls to four city corporations and nine municipalities on the last day of nomination paper submission yesterday.

Govt, AL fail to reach consensus

The Awami League (AL) and the government have failed to reach a consensus about a number of issues including lifting of the state of emergency before polls and unconditional release of Sheikh Hasina and agreed to sit again to discuss the issues.

Khaleda, Tarique sued for embezzling Tk 2cr

The Anti-corruption Commission (ACC) yesterday filed another case against former premier Khaleda Zia, her elder son Tarique Rahman and five others for embezzling over Tk 2.10 crore by forming an eyewash establishment named Zia Orphanage Trust.

Close shave for Biman's DC-10

Passengers and crew of a Biman DC10-30 aircraft went unhurt as the plane's six wheels burst while landing at Zia International Airport (ZIA) yesterday.

Correction centres not much of help

The juvenile development centres of the country fail to equip its inmates with the kind of support that would enable a child to find employment in the market once he is released from such a centre.

12 die in landslides, wall collapse

At least 10 people died in rain-induced landslides and wall collapse while two drowned in rainwater at Cox's Bazar early yesterday.

Pay Commission in a month to review salaries

The government is likely to constitute a pay commission in a month to review and recommend a revised salary structure for the employees of the government and the autonomous bodies.

CA for Saarc pressure on rich nations to cut emissions

Chief Adviser (CA) Fakhruddin Ahmed yesterday called for putting collective pressure by Saarc on the developed nations for making a unilateral and unconditional commitment to reduce their greenhouse gas emission levels to save the vulnerable regions of the world from the perils of climate change.

Rain cripples city life

Spells of torrential rain throughout the country played havoc especially with city life yesterday, submerging many streets and causing daylong gridlock in a virtual collapse of the capital's traffic system.

Upazila polls in end-Aug or Oct: CEC

Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) ATM Shamsul Huda yesterday said the upazila polls will be held either at the end of August or early October, and that there is no scope for going beyond that time.

Public hearing on electricity tariff July 20

Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (Berc) yesterday decided to hold a public hearing on July 20 at its office about increasing the bulk electricity tariff--which will not affect the general power consumers.

It's India against Lanka in final

Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Suresh Raina hit sparkling half-centuries to inspire India to the final of the Asia Cup with a six-wicket over Sri Lanka in a Super League match here Thursday.

World entering danger zone: WB chief

World Bank President Robert B Zoellick has urged the leaders of the G-8 as well as the major oil producers to act now to deal with surging food and energy prices, warning that the world is now "entering a danger zone."

100-day job creation for poor in Oct

The government will launch a special 100-day employment generation programme involving Tk 2,000 crore in mid-October as a guarantee scheme for poor unemployed people in rural areas.

Dulu, Salim sued for income tax evasion

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) yesterday filed two separate cases against former deputy minister for land Ruhul Kuddus Talukder Dulu and ex-BNP lawmaker MAH Salim for dodging income tax.

Hearing on charge framing deferred till July 8

The hearing on charge framing in the MiG-29 warplane purchase scam case against former prime minister Sheikh Hasina and six others has been adjourned till July 8.

ACC now focuses on corruption in service providing bodies: Mashhud

Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) Chairman Lt Gen (retd) Hasan Mashhud Chowdhury yesterday said the reconstituted commission has spent much of its time on dealing with corruption by political bigwigs and now it will focus on corruption in the service providing sectors.

Judges cannot work freely

Awami League (AL) President Sheikh Hasina Wednesday said even though the judiciary was separated from the executive, judges cannot work independently for untoward interference.

Launch fares re-fixed

The Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) yesterday re-fixed passenger-launch fares in the wake of increase in diesel price.

Terror attack in Jakarta foiled, 10 militants held

Anti-terror police arrested 10 suspected Muslim militants and seized a large cache of high-powered bombs, foiling a major attack targeting Westerners in the Indonesian capital, police and media reports said yesterday.

Dramatic rescue in Colombia

Commandos dramatically rescued Colombian-French politician Ingrid Betancourt and 14 other hostages by posing as their Marxist rebel captors and flying them out of their jungle prison by helicopter.

Correction

In our follow-up investigation, we found out some factual errors in our July 3 report headlined 'Under-pricing of Brazilian sugar.' PSI company Bureau Veritas was involved in certifying the under-valuation of the imports, and it was slapped with Tk 12 crore fine eventually.

Editorial

Saarc action plan on climate change

THE issue of climate change in South Asia, we are happy to note, is today the focus of deliberations not just in the wider world beyond our frontiers but in the Saarc region as well. That becomes obvious from the action plan that experts from the member states of Saarc agreed on at their just-concluded meeting in Dhaka. It is now our expectation that the recommendations made by these experts will be adopted at the conference of Saarc ministers that went underway in the capital yesterday.

CA's intervention welcome

THE directive of Chief Adviser Fakhruddin Ahmed to the ministries that they immediately put a stop to any further road digging in the capital in the monsoon could not have come a day later. How much the public suffering enormously through the indiscriminate road digging activities of the utility organisations craved for a break! They wondered what really happened to the commitment of the Dhaka city mayor during the BNP-led coalition rule that thenceforward no road digging would take place during rainy season.

A nation for sale?

CORPORATE raiders are notorious people. They orchestrate hostile takeover of companies and break up their assets to generate huge profit. This time a similar raid is being launched on this country. Private companies are taking it apart piece by piece to make more money. I don't oppose their right to do business, but what their business is doing to our rights as people is appalling.

We need a wartime president

GEORGE W. Bush is fond of describing himself as a "war president." And he has made many decisions involving soldiers and battle. But does this make the description an appropriate one? For many people the answer is obvious. We're engaged in conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, after all. But Bill Clinton initiated hostilities in the Balkans twice, George H.W. Bush invaded Panama and Iraq, and neither president ever described himself as a "war president."

Making education work

A saying in Bangla goes lekha pora kore je gari ghora chore shey -- which roughly translates as those that are successful in their studies will be successful in life. Ask any parent anywhere in the world and the chances are that they will agree and will go on to tell you that education offers their children the best possible opportunity to improve their lives and get better jobs.

Sports

Aktel boost for BFF

Cellular phone operating house Aktel has showed interest to become Bangladesh Football Federation's (BFF) partner in progress.

Tigers play Pakistan today

Bangladesh have a chance to spoil Pakistan's chances of making it to the final when they play their last Asia Cup Super League match at the Karachi National Stadium yesterday.

Venus strolls into final

Defending champion Venus Williams beat Elena Dementieva 6-1, 7-6 (3) to advance to the Wimbledon final Thursday, setting up a potential championship matchup with sister Serena.

ICC still undecided

The ICC board meeting will re-convene for an unscheduled third day on Friday to take up the Zimbabwe issue, with today's discussions failing to reach any conclusion.

Mercurial they remain

What is it that makes the Pakistani cricketer tick? In this sport, it is among the most compelling questions, unanswered till now and probably never to be fully resolved. If you didn't know any better you'd think, from various results over the years, some strife, considerable friction within the side, a run of bad results and a boggling glut of off-field controversies spurs them on.

Siddons sues CA

Bangladesh coach Jamie Siddons is suing Cricket Australia, claiming he injured his shoulder throwing cricket balls during his time as Australia's assistant coach.

Countrywide U-18 soccer camp on

The special project of Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) to find a stock of under-18 footballers will be on full swing from today.

Stamps to observe Beijing Olympics

Bangladesh Post Office will release four commemorative stamps on the occasion of the 29th Olympic Games to be held in Beijing August 8-24 this year.

Nadal, Federer cruise

Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal moved to within one win each of a third successive Wimbledon final showdown after cruising through their quarterfinals on Wednesday.

France keep Domenech

Raymond Domenech has survived the sack with the French Football Federation announcing Thursday that he had kept his job as manager despite France's poor showing at Euro 2008.

Man City snap up Jo

Brazilian striker Jo joined Manchester City from CSKA Moscow on Wednesday for what the English Premier League side said was a "club record" undisclosed fee.

Platini happy with preparations

UEFA gave a thumbs up Wednesday to Poland's Euro 2012 preparations despite jitters about the ability of the Poles and their Ukrainian co-hosts to get ready for the football showcase.

LDU win Copa Libertadores

LDU became the first Ecuadorean club to win the Libertadores Cup, beating Brazil's Fluminense on penalties after losing the second leg of the final 3-1 on Wednesday.

Australia draw Kuwait

Australia have been drawn in Group B along with 1980 champions Kuwait, Indonesia and Oman in the final qualification round for the 15th Asian Cup to be held in Qatar in 2011.

Messi, Aguero in Olympic team

Barcelona striker Lionel Messi and Atletico Madrid forward Sergio Aguero have been included in Argentina's squad for the Beijing Olympics soccer tournament.

Barcelona hail Alves

Brazil right back Daniel Alves completed his move from Sevilla to Barcelona on a four-year contract on Wednesday.

No decision on C'Ron injury

Manchester United officials have termed as premature press reports that star winger Cristiano Ronaldo will have to undergo surgery on his right ankle.

Queiroz set to take charge of Portugal

Alex Ferguson's right-hand man at Manchester United, Carlos Queiroz, is set to take over from Luiz Felipe Scolari as Portugal's national team coach, Portuguese papers reported on Thursday.

Ricky downplays whitewash

Ricky Ponting has played down talk of Australia sweeping West Indies in a one-day international series for the first time in the Caribbean.

England unchanged

National selector Geoff Miller announced an unchanged 12-man England squad here Thursday for next week's first Test against South Africa at Lord's.

Hunte warns WI

West Indies cricket chief Julian Hunte has again warned the West Indies players that their performance must be closely linked to the level of payments which they receive for international matches.

Bhola, Swapan keep winning

Bhola Lal of Sonargaon Hotel and Basundhara Group's Swapan Parvez recorded their third consecutive victories in the Premier Division of Delta Life Open Squash tournament at the Dhaka Club squash court yesterday.

BSWA honours 3 veteran journos

Bangladesh Sports Writers Association (BSWA) yesterday accorded reception to three veteran sports writers on the occasion of the World Sports Journalists Day.

'Younis made it impossible'

Indian skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni said his bowlers were helpless against a rampaging Younis Khan, who steered Pakistan to a comprehensive eight-wicket win against India and kept alive his side's hopes of making the final of the Asia Cup against Sri Lanka.

Lloyd replaces Sunny in ICC

Clive Lloyd, the former West Indies captain, will take over from Sunil Gavaskar as the chairman of the ICC's Cricket Committee, after Pakistan withdrew the nomination of Majid Khan.

Lord's goes Olympic

The architects behind Beijing's 'Bird's Nest' Olympic Stadium were awarded another high-profile sports commission Wednesday when they were given the job of designing the redevelopment of Lord's.

NZ too hot for Scots

New Zealand rounded off their tour of the United Kingdom with an eight-wicket thrashing of Scotland in a one-day international here on Thursday.

Business

SoE loss up 132pc in FY 08

The net loss of the state-owned enterprises (SoEs) increased by 132 percent in 2007-08 fiscal mainly due to increased price subsidy for petroleum products.

65,400 Titas Gas shares traded on second day

A total of 65,400 of shares of the state-run Titas Gas Transmission and Distribution Company were offloaded yesterday on the second day of the company's stock exchange debut.

Bangladesh to keep enjoying GSP facilities in US

Foreign Affairs Adviser Dr Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury yesterday said Bangladesh would "continue to enjoy the GSP facilities as before” in the United States.

Local sanitary napkins now hold 80pc market share

The country's local sanitary napkin industry has grown fast in the past 15 years, as consumers are increasingly getting locally made products at competitive prices.

Inflation biggest challenge: Aziz

The biggest challenge for Bangladesh's economy at the moment is containing inflation, observed both the government and International Monetary Fund (IMF) yesterday.

Oil soars past $146

Oil surged past $146 per barrel for the first time yesterday as the weak US dollar and Middle East tension stoked black gold's record-breaking run, analysts said.

New World Bank VP for South Asia

World Bank President Robert B. Zoellick has appointed Isabel Guerrero as vice president for South Asia Region.

NBR calls upon taxpayers to be more responsive

National Board of Revenue (NBR) chairman here yesterday called upon the taxpayers to be more responsive to tax payment to help the government reduce its bank borrowing and stay away from increasing taxes or imposing new taxes.

Global businesses seek successful completion of Doha round

The leaders of the global business community urged the governments, especially those of the biggest trading nations, to bridge their longstanding differences for a successful deal in the Doha round of world trade negotiations.

India, Iran to seal gas pipeline deal by next month

India expects to finalise a deal "by next month" on a pipeline that will transport gas from Iran, Indian Oil Minister Murli Deora told AFP on Thursday.

A day of day labourers

Though it was before noon, yet Abdus Samad was in waiting at the city's Jatrabari Crossing along with his colleagues hunting jobs for the day at any construction site.

Hong Kong chicken industry faces cull in bird flu clampdown

The familiar clucking of chickens returned to Hong Kong's markets on Wednesday after a three-week ban, but bird flu fears may soon consign the local preference for freshly-killed meat to history.

Asian stocks mostly down

Asian stocks closed mostly down Thursday as some markets tumbled to their lowest levels for years after a record-breaking surge in oil prices deepened fears for the world economy.

US economy loses jobs for sixth straight month

The world's biggest economy lost jobs for a sixth straight month in June as US employers shed 62,000 nonfarm jobs amid a lingering slowdown, a Labor Department report showed Thursday.

Jakarta raises interest rates on inflation fears

Indonesia's central bank raised its key interest rate by 25 basis points Thursday following a spike in inflation caused by a government hike in the price of fuel.

New chairman, vice chairmen of Islamic Finance

SM Bakhtiar Alam has recently been elected chairman of Islamic Finance and Investment Ltd, while Anis Salahuddin Ahmad and Md Shamsuzzaman have been elected its vice chairmen, says a press release.

Kenyan economy to grow by 4pc: IMF

Kenya's economy is expected to expand by four percent in 2008 -- in line with a government forecast -- owing to the impact wrought by the post-election violence, the International Monetary Fund said Wednesday.

Brazil dreams of oil riches but experts urge caution

The discovery of massive oil reserves under the Brazilian seabed has raised prospects that Brazil will become a new Latin American oil power, but experts warned this week against premature exuberance.

Sarkozy-Mandelson tensions flare as WTO talks loom

The European Commission rallied on Wednesday behind EU trade chief Peter Mandelson, under fire from French President Nicolas Sarkozy as WTO trade talks reach a make-or-break point.

China faces serious challenges on grain supply: premier

China faces serious challenges in ensuring it will have enough grain to feed its population in the decades to come, with urbanisation and climate change two major problems, Premier Wen Jiabao said.

German power group RWE unveils 3.2b euros grid investments

The German power group RWE said on Thursday it would invest 3.2 billion euros (five billion dollars) in its electric grid, a move expected to be followed by competitors under pressure to extend high-power lines.

Metropolitan

71 file nominations for mayors

Some 71 candidates for mayoral posts, 472 for councillors and 125 for researved seats for women submitted nominations to the returning officers yesterday for elections in nine municipalities.

Pledge to eliminate acid violence by 2015

The Acid Survivors Foundation (ASF) yesterday awarded six journalists in recognition of the role of the media in curbing acid violence.

Free registration for children until Dec 31

The government will extend the timeline for free birth registration for the children under 18 years of age to December 31 and set a fixed fee for registration of adults at Tk 50.

DU plans to set up second campus at Purbachal: VC

Due to lack of necessary land on the Dhaka University (DU) campus, five projects could not be implemented in last few years.

Gas emission from cracked pipe continues in Ctg

Gas emission from a cracked pipe of the Port Connecting Road in the city continued till yesterday afternoon due to lack of any step by the authorities concerned.

Navy new entry sailors passing out parade held

The passing out parade of new entry sailors of Bangladesh Navy was held at BNS Shaheed Moazzam parade ground in Kaptai yesterday.

HC rejects writ petitions against cancellation of recruitment of policemen

The High Court (HC) yesterday rejected 19 writ petitions challenging the legality of a government decision cancelling the recruitment of 757 policemen, including sub-inspectors (SIs) and sergeants.

Road accidents kill 4

Four people were killed and 30 others injured in separate road accidents in Bogra, Dinajpur and Chapainawabganj in the last two days.

Housewife strangled after rape

A gang of miscreants strangled a young housewife after violating her repeatedly at Goyra village at Benapole early yesterday.

Restrictions on publication of 27th BCS results go

The restrictions on Public Service Commission (PSC) publishing the 27th Bangladesh Civil Service (BCS) examinations have gone as the High Court yesterday rejected three writ petitions challenging the legality of the PSC decision cancelling the results of its viva voce.

Islamic Foundation recovers 19 shops from illegal occupants

Nineteen shops of New Super Market adjacent to the Baitul Mukarram market were recovered from the illegal occupants yesterday, says a press release.

'Make climate change main agenda'

People's Forum on MDGs (PFM) yesterday urged the governments of Saarc countries to make the climate change and its effects the main agenda of the upcoming Saarc summit.

Tiger kills fisherman

A fisherman was killed by a Royal Bengal Tiger at Hetalkhali canal area in the Sundarbans yesterday.

President, CA greet Bush

President Iajuddin Ahmed and Chief Adviser Fakhruddin Ahmed have greeted US President George W Bush on the occasion of his country's Independence Day today.

HC stays proceedings for 6 months

The High Court (HC) yesterday stayed for six months the proceedings of a graft case against Anwara Ahmed, wife of Awami League Presidium Member Tofail Ahmed.

Fobana confce begins in US today

Fobana Bangladesh Conference, popularly known as the bridge of unity among the Bangladeshis in the US, begins today at three different places in the US.

Time for depositing money for haj extended to July 13

The time for depositing money for this year's haj under both government and private management has been extended by one week to July 13.

Jubo Parishad council today

The 4th biennial national council of Bangabandhu Jubo Parishad will be held in the city today, says a press release.

Programme to raise funds for Samudra Gupta

Scholars Publishers and Sangbrita will jointly organise a cultural programme at Public Library auditorium in the city at 7:00pm today with a view to raising funds for poet Samudra Gupta, who has been suffering from cancer, says a press release.

Letters

A populist budget?

The think tanks have expressed their mixed reaction over the current fiscal year's budget presented by the finance adviser. Many columnists from top national dailies define it as a business friendly budget, while some others explain it as populist. However, we have heard comments from the eminent economists that the current budget is nothing but a short-term economic protection scheme. Finally, the finance adviser, the budget maker himself, said that even though it seems to be full of short-term protective measures, it contains many long-term directions as well.

Our universities

Once we were proud of our oldest university. Although I do not know who first called Dhaka University the Oxford of the East, there was much to be proud of. We had world famous physicist Professor S. Bose, celebrated Professor A.K Dasgupta, leading philosopher Professor GC Dev, distinguished historian Professor R.C. Majumder, and many more very high calibre academics.

Shishu Park

The Shishu Park at the northern fringe of Suhrawardy Udyan was set up in the late seventies in order to provide children with amusement and fun. However, with the increase in the number of visitors, the park is unable to cope with the extra demand. The mindless parking of vehicles and the presence of vendors have rendered the area dirty and chaotic and added to the woes of the city dwellers. Over the years, the various games items have become old, worn out and the risk of an accident is always there. In the first place, setting up of a children's park in the heart of the city lacked visionary planning. Ideally, such a park should have been set up on the outskirts of the city .The area earmarked for the Shishu Park should be brought immediately under the overall development of the Udyan--the lung of the city. Moreover, setting up of the park was a deliberate attempt to wipe out the memories of our glorious history of independence. This was the very place from where the Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, gave the clarion call for independence.

Voter registration

The Election Commission announced last week that it had registered 99% of the voters. It implies that around 7 lakh voters are yet to be registered. This remaining part is the difficult one, as these voters are mainly floating.

Economic recession: American perspective

I as an old retired banker love to avidly go through all economic and financial news that appears daily in your newspaper. Of late, sub prime house loan disaster in the USA is a hot topic of discussion in the financial circle. The sharp downturn of the housing sector along with the sky-high oil prices and huge deficit due to the phenomenal increase in war costs in different world theatres have precipitated recession in America's economy. Since the housing sector has a substantial share in GDP growth of the US economy, its downturn triggers a chain effect in other sectors too. Manufacturing activities dwindle down along with consumer confidence. Many industries cut down their capacity. Due to the oil price hike, a good number of airlines grounded hundreds of their carriers, cut down number of routes, a few sought bankruptcy protection etc. Automobile industries shut down some of their facilities. A large number of employees have been given marching orders with a pink slip in hand. Unemployment rate has swelled. Common men's suffering knows no bound. The economic slump in the USA has a simmering ripple effect on world economy in general inasmuch as the US economy is considered to be the growth engine of global economy, other developed European economies are also hard hit by US recession. Developing economies like that of China, India, Brazil, Indonesia etc. are also in the fray. About the least developed economies like that of Bangladesh, the less said, the better.

Pushing people to the provinces…

It is not possible to move in Dhaka city. It is now not possible to predict the travel time for distances of barely two to three kilometres. It is no longer possible not to be hesitant to venture on to the street, on foot or on a vehicle, private or public.

Skilled manpower

There is severe shortage of skilled manpower in the garment sector in Bangladesh. It is a serious pre-alert for our second largest foreign currency-earning sector. We have a huge number of workers, but we don't have the needed number of skilled workers.

A brilliant student

While reading about the brilliant achievement of a student, Sabir, of the Nilphamari Government High School, fighting against all odds, my eyes became so heavy and hazy with tearful delight that I had to wipe out my glasses over and over again.

AL's decision

Please appreciate the AL's recent decision to take part in local govt elections. It is also appreciable that the AL has now developed their capability to take decision collectively without depending on just one person (Sheikh Hasina). It is a good sign for our politics.

Who is saying this?

Begum Khaleda Zia has claimed that the upcoming local government polls had been planned by the CTG to place it chosen people in local bodies.

Accidents

In our country, road accident is a daily event. Nobody is thinking about it. Newspapers are presenting news and we are reading it. Not only the government but also the NGOs should come forward to address the issue.

Agr. varsity in the city!

I am talking about the Sher-e-Bangla Agricultural University(SAU) which is just now being located at the heart of a burgeoning capital city. How a farm varsity could be established just at the heart of a very densely populated city? A farm varsity is supposed to be in the countryside or around the farm lands/ farm households.

The budget

Not too long ago the budget for 2007-08 fiscal year was announced. No budget is flawless, it comes with its merits and demerits. Unfortunately, we have a bunch of economists who are always highly critical of any budget, irrespective of whether it is prepared by a democratic government or a caretaker government.

Do they deserve it?

Four hundred doctors signed up for the release of Khaleda Zia and her two sons. Why? Do they deserve it? Did they apologise to this nation for the corruption they did during their tenure? Our doctors are more involved in politics than their professional development. Can DAB give a single example that contributed to the development of medical practices in Bangladesh? Shame on these doctors. Don't mislead this nation any more.

Our police

No doubt, most of the police officers perform their duties with honesty, sincerity and, above all, love for the country. But what happened on 27 June is quite humiliating not only for the police, it is also a great embarrassment for the nation. "A police officer was found guilty of stealing a mobile phone set ."-(The Daily Star, 29.06.2008)

A nagging problem

Once my relative took my cell phone and he did something without informing me. Since then, every day I get a message in my cell phone on horoscope coming from the number 022667. I tried my best to stop it, but failed. At last, I called up 121 (GP Customer Centre) to solve my problem. When I called up 121, the computer-based system automatically received my call and I came to hear a voice. She gave me a number, 2667, and told me to write “off” in message option and to send it to that number. I tried my best to send the message but it could not be sent because it was an invalid number. I talked with her but the problem was not solved.

Former PM

On June 4, 2008 Begum Khaleda Zia was brought to a magistrate's court with many other VIP accused. But when sick Koko was brought in a wheelchair into the room, the former prime minister rushed to her dear son with tears and an emotional scene was created there. Although Begum Zia was the PM, she is a mother as well. So her behaviour was completely natural.

HKI and children

Helen Keller International (HKI) Bangladesh and Bangladesh Shishu Academy jointly organised a children's painting competition as part of celebrating the 30 years (1978-2008) of HKI in Bangladesh. The art competition held at the Shishu Academy Art Gallery was on the subject: "Field, Food and Family." The purpose of the event was to involve children in unfolding their creativity around some of HKI's core focal points -- food production, nutrition and women's empowerment.

Poor governance

We citizens depended on the political regimes and we suffered losses running into billions during the past decades due to non-transparent tender procedures. Next year the elected political regime will come back to power. Have the people regained confidence in political governance? If so, what are the new yardsticks, and the new rules to discourage the backdoor games of turning politics into private business ?

Construction of road- a suggestion

I would like to draw the kind attention of the present government to the decision taken on the construction of the road from the Parjoton Office to Mirpur Road at a cost of Tk 25 crore.

International

Bush to send more troops to Afghanistan

Grappling with a record death toll in an overshadowed war, President Bush promised yesterday to send more US troops into Afghanistan by year's end.

India to push ahead with nuke deal

India's ruling Congress party has decided to press ahead with a nuclear energy deal with the United States despite threats by its left-wing allies to bring down the coalition, officials said yesterday.

80 Myanmar cyclone victims rescued from traffickers

More than 80 women and child victims of Myanmar's recent cyclone have been rescued from human traffickers who were scheming to smuggle them to neighboring countries, a media report said yesterday.

Pakistan should focus on security, not Musharraf

Pakistan should focus more on critical issues, such as security problems, rising food costs and power shortages, and less on the future of embattled President Pervez Musharraf, a top US diplomat said Wednesday.

7,000 spared from gallows in Pakistan

The Pakistani cabinet has approved a proposal to commute the sentences of thousands of prisoners on death row to life imprisonment, officials say.

Israel ready for military action in Gaza

Israel is ready to use military action "without hesitation" in Gaza to prevent attacks, an Israeli minister said yesterday after a Palestinian driving a bulldozer went on a deadly rampage in Jerusalem.

Nobel laureate Ebadi warns West against war on Iran

Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi warned the West yesterday against launching a military attack against Iran or imposing economic sanctions over its contested nuclear programme.

Ex-Philippines lawmaker arrested in new coup plot: Police

A former high profile Philippines lawmaker and four retired police and military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting to overthrow President Gloria Arroyo, police said yesterday.

Thai court blocks Thaksin's trip to China, Britain

Thailand's Supreme Court has denied ousted premier Thaksin Shinawatra permission to travel to China and Britain as his first corruption case is set to go to trial, an official said yesterday.

UN chief gets hero's welcome in South Korea

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon received a hero's welcome yesterday as he returned to his native South Korea for the first trip since taking up the post.

UN tribunal clears Srebrenica Muslim commander

The commander of Bosnian Muslim forces in Srebrenica, Naser Oric, was cleared yesterday when the appeals chamber of the UN war crimes tribunal overturned his conviction for war crimes.

Nepal to ask UN to extend peace mission

Nepal will ask the United Nations to continue to monitor thousands of former Maoist guerrillas confined to camps as part of a peace deal, a minister said yesterday.

Arts & Entertainment

A passion for the stage

After the curtains come down to a successful play, have you ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes? To be honest, I was at a loss recently, coming out from the Experimental Theatre Hall. The young enthusiasts I had taken along with me had many questions: How do the actors remember their lines in a three-hour drama with no cue cards? How could anyone but locals develop such a flawless dialect? Does it pay to be a stage actor?

Bahubachan Theatre Festival ‘08 begins

Many theatre-goers are unaware that the first stage play for which tickets were sold was Bahubachan's production Projapotir Leelalashya (written by Farhad Mazhar and directed by Motahar Hossain). This significant moment in the history of neo-theatre movement in Bangladesh was June 3, 1972 at the Engineers' Institute Auditorium.

The bright singing sensation

The 24-year-old Indian playback singer Shreya Ghoshal goes from strength to strength. Lately she bagged the prestigious Star Screen Award for Best Female Singer for Barso Re (from the film Guru). The same song won her the Filmfare Award, the Apsara Award, the Zee Cine Award and the IIFA award. She also took the German Public Bollywood Award for Best Singer (Female) for Yeh Ishq Haaye (Jab We Met)..

“Jago": Love of football and the country

It takes courage to take a stand, to face a formidable challenge; sometimes boys become men overnight to tackle these challenges -- "Jago" is all about that. This new film, produced by Sharjeel Karim and Adnan Karim, will be directed by Khijir Hayat Khan who has also written the story, screenplay and dialogues. "Jago" is Interspeed Production's first feature film.

Photo exhibition on tourism sponsored by Banglalink

Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation (BPC) in association with Bangladesh Shilpakala Acdemy (BSA) is holding a two-day long photographic exhibition on tourism at Jatiya Chitrashala, BSA starting from today. Titled "1st Tourism Photography Exhibition 2008," the exhibition is sponsored by Banglalink. This is the first photographic exhibition on tourism by BPC.

Professor Hayat Mamud's 70th birthday celebrated

To celebrate the 70th birthday of essayist-poet Professor Hayat Mamud, publication house Nabajug Prakashani arranged a discussion programme at the Poet Sufia Kamal Auditorium, National Museum on July 2. Eminent personalities discussed on life and works of Hayat Mamud at the programme.

Shishu Ananda mela ends in Khagrachhari

Speakers in a closing discussion and prize giving ceremony said that the Shishu Ananda Mela enriches creativity of children, encourages an exchange of views and helps in boosting self- confidence.

Two young Bangladeshi film-makers attend Iranian festival

The 22nd Hamedan International Film Festival in Iran was held recently. Well-known filmmakers were invited to judge short films while child jury members were called to evaluate full-length adult films.

OP-ED

Not a sign of weakness

BY releasing Sheikh Hasina on "medical parole" and allowing her to go abroad for treatment, the government has done what is expected under the circumstances. Her release was based, as has been explained by the government, primarily on two considerations. One was humanitarian and the other was national interest.

The life of Govindo Chandra Dev

WHEN Govindo Chandra Dev was shot and bayoneted to death in the early hours of March, 26, 1971, by the soldiers of the Pakistan army, it marked the end of one of the foremost intellectuals of the Indian subcontinent. For Dev was a scholar beyond measure; and beyond measure too was the personality that defined his being. A thinker in the extreme, he was yet an individual who drew from other individuals the feeling that he was accessible. There was little that was hard to fathom about him. Those who knew him, his colleagues and students alike, have consistently recalled the human qualities that endlessly underpinned his philosophy of life.

Popular wisdom

INTEREST in common people's wisdom and resource use technologies have moved to centre- stage in the recent years. The localised and socio-culturally bound knowledge and technologies are examples of cost-effective and sustainable strategies for poverty alleviation and rural development.

World's earliest blogger had his work cut out for him

THE world's first blogger has been found. It's an Indian nerd. (What a surprise.) Stand up and take a bow, Ashoka Piyadassi of northeastern India. Yay!

StarTech

Fostering Bangladeshi skills the Cisco way

Information technology (IT), networking technology in particular, is providing high-growth career opportunities for students, thanks to the rapidly expanding Bangladesh economy. Cisco Networking Academy (CNA) a.k.a. NetAcad initiative has touched many students in Bangladesh with huge year-on-year growth. The last one year has seen a particular growth in need for networking professionals.

Untapped zones of Bangladesh

Many of you must have played videogames. Imagine you are playing games that are created by your countrymen! Yes you've heard it right. Days are not far away when you can play world-standard games made by Bangladeshis.

A Tête-à-tête on Acer India

In an exclusive interview, WS Mukund, managing director of Acer India, let us in on his perception of the Bangladeshi IT market and its relevance to Acer India. The interview, held at the office of Executive Technologies Limited, distributor of Acer in Bangladesh, provided an insight into the company's foresight, both globally and for the Bangladeshi market.

Bye Bye Bill..

William Henry Gates III, popularly known as Bill Gates, CEO of Microsoft, the man who had brought to us the world's most popular Operating System, 'Windows', and several times ranked as the 'richest man in the world', has retired from service last Friday. The Co-Chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Gates has sighted reasons of concentrating harder on charity work as the cause of his retirement. Relating to Spider-man's most popular dialogue known to all of us, Gates has been quoted as saying, “Great wealth brings with it great responsibility.” Today, in StarTech we try to reflect through some pictures on the illustrious life of this great software developer, business entrepreneur and above all, a foreseer, who saw much ahead of his time.

Environment

Compensation for climate change

BANGLADESH including those who are badly affected by global climate change should be compensated from the developed countries who are mainly responsible for it. This demand became stronger at a seminar in observance of World Environment Day in the country as elsewhere in the world on June 5.

Conservation of biotic-abiotic and biotic-biotic interactions

BY now the term 'biodiversity conservation' has become very popular but the meaning of it is not clear even to many educated people in the society. It is generally understood that the conservation of living organisms is the conservation of biodiversity. But actually the conservation of the biodiversity is the conservation of interactions in an ecosystem.

Humans are unabatedly warming the climate

TWENTY years ago, James E. Hansen, a climate scientist at Nasa, shook Washington and the world by telling a sweating crowd at a Senate hearing during a stifling heat wave that he was 99 per cent certain that humans were already warming the climate.



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