The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Thursday, April 17, 2014


News of: Wednesday, 23rd of July, 2008

Front Page

Successful completion of voter list celebrated

Chief Adviser Fakhruddin Ahmed yesterday expressed his satisfaction at successful completion of an error-free voter list with photographs, saying it is a milestone towards a free and fair election.

EC starts drafting rules, code of conduct

The Election Commission (EC) yesterday began finalising the draft electoral rules and code of conduct for polls to upazila parishads with a strict provision to disqualify candidates using their political affiliation in the polls.

Candidates changed, pledges unchanged

The pledges for seeking votes in the upcoming city corporation polls have remained the same: corruption and criminal activities would be rooted out, development work would be done, city corporation offices would be freed from political influence and so on. Only the persons making the pledges have changed.

AL calls for resisting upazila election

Acting Awami League President Zillur Rahman yesterday called for resisting upazila parishad elections, as the Chief Election Commissioner's disclosure hit the headlines that the local-body polls will be held on October 23.

Post office hassle awaits car tax payers

Vehicle owners going to post offices to deposit tax renewal fees for their motor vehicles face untold sufferings as the post offices are failing to cope with the huge number of people queuing up.

Agriculture reforms must to transfer resources to poor

Comprehensive reforms in agriculture and markets are imperative to create opportunities for people deprived of resources and thereby alleviate poverty, eminent economist Prof Rehman Sobhan said yesterday.

Politicians left out of celebration

The Election Commission (EC) thought better of inviting politicians to yesterday's celebration of its successful completion of the voter registration task at the field level to "avoid controversy".

Elect honest, dynamic leaders

Chief of Army Staff General Moeen U Ahmed yesterday requested voters to choose honest, capable and dynamic leaders who can lead the country in the right direction.

Babar charged with amassing Tk 7cr illegal wealth

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) yesterday pressed charges against detained former state minister for home Lutfozzaman Babar in a corruption case filed for accumulating illegal wealth and hiding information about his actual assets from the commission.

MK Anwar freed on bail

Former agriculture minister and BNP Vice-president MK Anwar was released from Dhaka Central Jail last night following an interim bail issued by the High Court Sunday.

DCC to fell 52 old trees in Gulshan

Dhaka City Corporation is felling a number of old trees in city's Gulshan area, which some residents are complaining is a farce in the name of beautification of roads and improvement of the drainage system.

Some honest politicians became victim

Appreciating the ongoing anti-graft drive against corrupt politicians, Awami League (AL) President and former prime minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said corrupt politicians would learn a lesson from their follies.

Mamun granted interim bail from HC

The High Court (HC) yesterday granted ad interim bail to Giasuddin Al Mamun, a close friend of former premier Khaleda Zia's son Tarique Rahman, in a case filed by Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) for non-submission of his wealth statement to the ACC.

Bangladeshi workers in Kuwait back to work

Around 3000 of the 5000 Bangladeshi workers in Kuwait who went on an indefinite strike in protest at low wages and irregular payment on Sunday, returned to their work yesterday after their employers increased their wages.

Govt cancels cash incentive to 25 schools

The education ministry has cancelled monthly pay order (MPO) of 25 non-government schools in Rangpur, Kurigram and Lalmonirhat for poor results of their students in this year's SSC examinations.

Quader wonders why parties oppose UZ polls

Communications Adviser Maj Gen (Retd) Ghulam Quader yesterday wondered why political parties decry holding of upazila parishad polls notwithstanding the fact that it is a nonparty election.

Only Khaleda can validate CG activities

BNP Secretary General Khandaker Delwar Hossain yesterday said there is no possibility of legitimising the activities of the present government in future unless it is done by a genuinely elected parliament.

Salam Pintu, 2 Huji cadres denied bail

A Dhaka court yesterday rejected the bail petitions of detained former deputy minister Abdus Salam Pintu and two other Harkatul Jihad (Huji) members in connection with the August 21 grenade attack case.

Bahrain lifts ban on work visas for Bangladeshis

Bahrain has lifted a ban on work visas for Bangladeshis, two months after suspending the permits when a mechanic from Bangladesh was accused of a gruesome murder, a diplomat said yesterday.

ACC to quiz Huda, Sigma in bribery case

A Dhaka court yesterday allowed the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) to interrogate detained former communications minister Nazmul Huda and his wife Sigma Huda at jail gate in connection with a case filed against them for taking Tk 6 lakh in bribe from a construction firm.

1.2 lakh MT rice arrive from India since July 10

Twelve ships carrying around 1.20 lakh tonnes of Indian rice have arrived at Chittagong seaport since July 10, officials yesterday said.

Trial adjourned until Sep 8

The trial proceedings of the barge-mounted power plant graft case against former premier Sheikh Hasina and seven others were adjourned yesterday till September 8.

Manmohan govt survives confidence vote

India's government survived a chaotic parliamentary confidence vote yesterday, clearing the way for it to forge ahead with a civilian nuclear energy deal with the United States.

Karadzic arrested for war crime

Radovan Karadzic grew a long, white beard to conceal his identity and even managed to openly practice alternative medicine while in hiding, officials said yesterday in revealing details of the war crimes fugitive's capture after a decade on the run.

LTTE declares truce for Saarc Summit

Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger rebels announced yesterday they would observe a unilateral ceasefire coinciding with a South Asian leaders' summit that starts on the island this week.

ADB to lend $170m to face food crisis

The Asian Development Bank will lend Bangladesh $170 million to help cope with a rapid rise in food prices.

Obama, Iraqi PM want US troops out by 2010

White House hopeful Barack Obama yesterday ended a high-profile tour to Iraq by sharing a common vision with Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki of withdrawing US forces from the country by 2010.

Editorial

Agonising tales of Bangladeshi workers in Kuwait

This is screaming for attention. Five thousand Bangladeshis working in a Kuwaiti company couldn't put up with the ignominy anymore. They had to go on strike protesting underpayment and irregularity of wages in a gross breach of contract.

Chief Adviser's views on lifting of emergency

The Chief Adviser thinks that the time is not ripe for a full lifting of the emergency. That statement will certainly leave politicians across the spectrum disappointed, for they have been demanding an end to the emergency in the run-up to the promised elections in December this year. That said, the CA's remarks in Sylhet on Monday throw fresh new light on the political situation obtaining in the country and what the caretaker government plans on doing about it. A significant point Fakhruddin Ahmed has made relates to the need for a consensus in the on-going dialogue between the government and the political parties. He believes, and so do a whole range of others in the country, that the politics of the future must be based on an agreement by all to make Parliament effective and to consign hartals to history.

This natural yearning for elected government . . .

IF everything goes well, and nothing should go wrong, a new government should be in office in Bangladesh come January. Never before in the history of this country has this desire for elected government been as intense as it is today. For obvious reasons, of course. In these last eighteen months, much has happened, much has not happened, and some of what has happened has been rolled back; and all of that has only whipped up this wonderful, excitable political frenzy in us for a return to democratic governance.

Mediterranean pomp

WHILE many Parisians have been en vacances, heads of states and governments of Mediterranean countries gathered here for a summit at the invitation of President Nicolas Sarkozy. With leaders from both north and south present, the final summit could be viewed as a success. But on the home stages those leaders are weak -- and now the difficult task begins -- turning hope into reality.

Legacy II: Afghanistan

ON September 11, 2001 a team of al Qaeda operatives hijacked four planes in the United States, two planes destroyed the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York, one damaged the Pentagon in Washington, and one crashed when the passengers attacked the hijackers.

Sports

Wasim's new challenge

Great footballers always do not make a great coach. Some have proved this notion wrong and Khandoker Wasim Iqbal wants to be one of them when the Federation Cup finals begin next month.

First Test from today

Ajantha Mendis loomed large as the biggest obstacle to India's chances of claiming a first series win in Sri Lanka for 15 years.

BKSP champs in swimming

Bangladesh Krira Shikkha Protishthan (BKSP) emerged champions in the Keya 24th National Age Group Swimming Championships securing 45 gold, 35 silver and 14 bronze medals on conclusion of the three-day meet at the National Swimming Complex in Mirpur yesterday.

BFF eyes renewing deal with Nokia

Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) is looking forward to restore a sponsorship deal with Nokia regarding the national football team.

Terry still haunted

Chelsea captain John Terry admitted he was still haunted by his horror penalty miss in the Champions League final as he gears up for the new season here.

Proteas punish England

South Africa thrashed England by 10 wickets as they won the second Test with more than a day to spare at Headingley here Monday.

Captains for review trial

Indian cricket captain Anil Kumble and his Sri Lankan opposite number Mahela Jayawardene Tuesday welcomed an experimental rule allowing players to seek a second opinion on umpiring decisions.

Smith wants to do it now

Graeme Smith may have had to be told he'd replaced the late disgraced Hansie Cronje as South Africa's most successful Test captain after his side's 10-wicket triumph here at Headingley but one statistic he was all too well aware of was the Proteas' record in England.

'Don't make worst move'

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has claimed that Cristiano Ronaldo would be doing the 'worst thing' for his career if he succeeding in engineering a move from Old Trafford to Real Madrid.

'Don't blame Pattinson'

England captain Michael Vaughan said controversial debutant Darren Pattinson had "tried his guts out" as he cleared him of blame for the team's 10-wicket second Test thrashing by South Africa.

Skippers' words

Skipper Mahela Jayawardene says Sri Lanka are keen to maintain their impressive home record when they take on India in a three-Test series, which starts here on Wednesday.

Focus is on friendship

China on Tuesday said US athletes should focus on building friendships at the Beijing Games, in a curt response to US President George Bush's call for them to be "ambassadors of liberty".

Derbyshire in driving seat

Derbyshire threatened to post an imposing lead against Bangladesh A in their first-class match when the home side reached 65 for two in their second innings at the County ground in Derby half an hour into the final session of second day's play yesterday.

Tendulkar now number 14

Sachin Tendulkar slipped a rung to 14th but continued to be the highest ranked Indian in the ICC Test rankings for batsmen while his skipper Anil Kumble was the best-placed Indian bowler in the latest list.

Host decision tomorrow

The International Cricket Council will decide Thursday whether Pakistan can host the Champions Trophy in September amid security fears in the country.

Nat'l women's kabaddi on

The zonal round of the Spectra Group National Women's Kabaddi Championship began yesterday at four separate venues across the country.

Rampura's fine start

Rampura KC recorded a thrilling 3-2 win against Surjosena SC in their opening match of the 2nd phase of the Dhaka City Corporation Pioneer Football League at the Bir Shreshtha Shaheed Mostafa Kamal Stadium in Kamalapur yesterday.

Coronation win school title

Coronation Institution and College became unbeaten champions in the Grameen Danone Under-12 Inter-school football tournament beating Police Lines High School by a solitary goal here yesterday.

DRU TT from July 27

The annual table tennis competition of Dhaka Reporters Unity (DRU) will begin July 27 at the DRU hall room.

Podolski pledges Bayern future

Bayern Munich's German international star Lukas Podolski on Monday scotched rumours about his departure from the German champions, after talks with new coach Jurgen Klinsmann.

Messi awaits Olympic fate

Lionel Messi, who has been called on to represent his native Argentina at the Olympics, remained at a Barcelona pre-season training camp in Scotland on Tuesday with the approval of Argentina's Football Federation, a Barcelona spokesman said.

Ronaldinho's number is 80

New AC Milan signing Ronaldinho will wear the number 80 shirt this season, the club said on Monday.

No loan deal for Baptista

Brazilian forward Julio Baptista's agent on Monday ruled out the possibility of his client signing a loan deal with AS Roma.

Zaki joins Wigan

Egypt striker Amr Zaki has joined Wigan on a one-year loan deal from Cairo's Zamalek, the English Premier League club announced on Tuesday.

Business

SEC okays changes in mutual fund rules

As the stock market regulator yesterday approved the proposed changes in mutual fund rules, from now on no close-end mutual fund can offer bonus share as dividend or offer right issues in a bid to increase their capital base.

1.66m new cellphone subscribers in June

The country's six mobile operators added 1.66 million new customers in June, displaying the high growth of the sector.

Emerging economies stand firm against rich countries at WTO

Emerging economies challenged rich countries to prove their goodwill on Tuesday at crucial World Trade Organization talks, which were hamstrung by the absence of the Indian trade minister.

Dhaka urges WTO not to undermine LDC demands

Bangladesh has urged the developed and developing countries not to undermine the specific demands of the LDCs for better market access of their products and services under any circumstances.

Brokerage houses need permission for new branches

From now on the brokerage houses will need to take permission of the stock market regulator to open a branch office.

Poor delivery of food grains creates Ctg port congestion

Poor delivery of imported food grains due to godown shortage and unavailability of transports is creating congestion at the Chittagong port.

Jute traders threaten fresh agitation from August 6

Jute traders yesterday threatened to go for further agitation from August 6 if their Tk 140 crore dues from state-owned 22 jute mills are not cleared by August 5.

Tourism fair begins tomorrow

A three-day tourism fair 'BRAC Bank Bangladesh Travel and Tourism Mart 2008 begins in the capital from tomorrow.

In oil-rich Norway, petrol prices sky high

In Norway, many motorists are up in arms over why they have to pay the highest petrol (gasoline) prices in Europe when the country is the world's fifth-largest oil exporter and a recent tax hike has done little to cool tempers.

Experts warn S Korea may be headed for new oil price shock

As international oil prices approach US$150 per barrel, some experts warn that South Korea may be headed for a new oil price shock that could be longer and more painful than those in the past.

HSBC Bangladesh’s new CEO

The Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) Limited has appointed Sanjay Prakash as the chief executive officer of HSBC Bangladesh. He will replace Steve Banner, who will move on shortly to assume a new role as Head of Strategy and Business Transformation in HSBC's Consumer & Mortgage Lending business in the USA, according to a press release.

Islami Bank to raise authorised capital

The Islami Bank board has decided to raise the bank's authorised capital to Tk 1000 crore from Tk 500 crore, which is subject to approval of Bangladesh Bank and shareholders.

Taiwan jobless rate up 3.95pc

Taiwan's unemployment rate rose to 3.95 percent in June from 3.84 percent in May as the number of first-time jobseekers increased, the government said Tuesday.

Biz Letters

Branding Bangladesh
How do we brand Bangladesh? How can we highlight our motherland's good image to the world at large? It is a million dollar question but the answer is definitely not worth million dollars.

ADB cuts developing Asia's growth forecast

The Asian Development Bank on Tuesday cut its 2009 growth forecast for the region's developing economies to 7.6 percent, citing tighter credit and soaring food and energy costs.

Taiwan jobless rate up 3.95pc

Taiwan's unemployment rate rose to 3.95 percent in June from 3.84 percent in May as the number of first-time jobseekers increased, the government said Tuesday.

Toshiba sells stake in real estate unit

Japan's Toshiba Corp., hoping to refocus on mainstay businesses, said Tuesday it was selling a majority stake in its real estate unit for 80 billion yen (751 million dollars) to the Nomura group.

Vodafone warning deepens telecom clouds

British mobile phone giant Vodafone warned on Tuesday that full-year sales would disappoint the market, sending its share price tumbling one week before the exit of chief executive Arun Sarin.

Ericsson reports quarterly earnings collapse

Ericsson, the world leader in mobile phone network equipment, announced a 70-percent collapse of net profit for the second quarter on Tuesday and a two-thirds fall in operating margins.

Pakistani transporters strike against oil prices

Thousands of buses stayed off the streets of Karachi on Tuesday as transporters staged a strike against the Pakistani government's latest increase in petrol prices.

Metropolitan

Campaign for candidates new source of income for hundreds

Canvassing for mayor and councilor candidates has become a source of income for hundreds of unemployed and poor youths, especially women, in Rajshahi city as they are being offered attractive figures for electioneering for the candidates.

Control of mob without fatal injuries stressed

Trainers from the US Marine Corps yesterday presented a practical demonstration of how to control a mob using non-lethal weapons without causing fatal injuries.

Govt wants to see NGOs as dev partners

The government wants to see the NGOs as its development associates, but it is unfortunate that some quarters term such partnership with the government as 'NGOisation', Primary and Mass Education Adviser Rasheda K Chowdhury said yesterday.

HC rule on president, law secretary

The High Court (HC) yesterday issued a rule upon the president and law secretary to explain within two weeks why the non-appointment of Abdus Salam Mamun as a regular judge of the HC on completion of his service as an additional judge without any blemish should not be declared illegal.

Hold elections in all UZs

Bangladesh Union Parishad Oikya Jote, a platform of union parishad (UP) chairmen, yesterday called on the caretaker government to hold upazila parishad elections in all 482 upazilas, not only in 300 upazilas, in October.

'Protect Sandwip from erosion'

The people of Sandwip and local representatives yesterday placed a 17-point demand with a call to take immediate steps to protect the island from erosion and ensure security of the people living there.

Value of women's household activities $91b a year

The household activities of women should be valued in the country's gross domestic product (GDP), speakers at a view exchange meeting said yesterday.

Introduce combined syllabus to maintain quality education

Speakers at a seminar yesterday called on the authorities concerned to introduce a combined syllabus from primary level to tertiary level in the country in order to maintain standard of education.

6th anniversary of police atrocities on DU female students today

Today is 6th anniversary of police atrocities on female students at Shamsunnahar Hall of Dhaka University (DU).

Rich tributes to Samudra Gupta

People from all walks of life, including academicians, politicians and cultural personalities, yesterday paid their last tributes to poet Samudra Gupta at the central Shaheed Minar in the city.

Air Force man sent to jail on charges of torturing wife

A Chittagong court yesterday sent an Air Force corporal to jail on charges of torturing his wife over dowry.

TIB, Sanak conduct mobile information, suggestion programme

With the slogan 'Only information can make people aware against corruption', Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) and the YES Group of Sachetan Nagorik Committee (Sanak) Savar conducted a two-day mobile information and suggestion programme at Savar that ended yesterday.

Confce on tropical diseases begins July 28

A two-day international conference on neglected tropical diseases (Kala azar, filariasis and soil transmitted helminthiasis) will begin at Biam auditorium in the city on July 28, says a press release.

Fresh areas flooded in Munshiganj

More low-lying areas were submerged in Munshiganj yesterday due to water level rise in the river Padma.

Road crashes kill four

Four people were killed and 23 others were injured in separate road accidents in Barisal and Jessore yesterday.

DU journos demand punishment

A group of journalists, who are also students of Dhaka University (DU), yesterday took to the streets on the campus protesting the assault on freedom fighter Sheikh Mohammad Ali Aman by Jamaat-Shibir cadres.

Tajuddin's 83rd anniversary of birth today

Today is the 83rd birth anniversary of Tajuddin Ahmad, the first prime minister of Bangladesh, says a press release.

JICA training on intellectual disabilities begins today

An 11-member team for JICA training on 'Intellectual disabilities in community activity' arrived in the city yesterday, says a press release.

HC asks Khulna court to ensure best treatment of her

The High Court yesterday directed the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (CMM) of Khulna to conduct the trial of Arifa, a 10-year-old girl who was arrested on charges of drug peddling, ensuring best treatment of her.

Partial eclipse of sun Aug 1

Partial eclipse of the sun will be seen in Bangladesh from 4:47:45pm to 6:32:13pm on August 1.

CCC sweepers assault officials, damage vehicles

Sweepers of Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) yesterday assaulted three officials, including CCC chief conservancy officer, and damaged four vehicles for allegedly misbehaving with them.

Indian books for Asiatic Society

Pinak Ranjan Chakravarty, High Commissioner of India, handed over a 55 volume works on the history of Indian science, philosophy and culture to the Asiatic Society of Bangladesh President Prof Sirajul Islam at a ceremony in the city yesterday, says a press release.

Woman cleaner held on charge of lifting 29 files

Police yesterday arrested a woman cleaner of Bangladesh Secretariat when she was departing with 29 files of the security section of the home ministry.

Smokers fined for using public places

A mobile court during separate drives in the city yesterday fined six people with Tk 50 each for smoking at public places while Hotel Sheraton with Tk 1,000 for naming one of its lounges as Dunhill Lounge.

One dies in clash

A young man succumbed to his injuries at Sylhet MAG Osmani Medical College Hospital last night.

National

Firm fined more Tk 27lakh, work orders cancelled

The Roads and Highway Department (RHD) and Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) in Tangail have fined Kader Siddiqui's construction firm Sonar Bangla Prokaushol Shanghtha Tk 27 lakh for failing to complete construction of two bridges in Ghatail and Nagarpur upazilas within the scheduled time.

Graft in govt offices not due to low pay

Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) Chairman Hasan Mashhud Chowdhury yesterday called upon government officials to resist corruption and help the government root out the vice from society.

Punish attackers, ban fake FFs body

Conscious citizens have continued protest programmes demanding punishment of Jamaat-Shibir men responsible for assaulting freedom fighter Sheikh Mohammad Ali Aman at a programme of Jamaat-backed fake freedom fighters' organisation Jatiya Muktijoddha Parishad in Dhaka on July 11

Ex-Ameer of Sylhet Jamaat , 3 others sued

Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) has filed a case against four persons including immediate past chief of Sylhet city Jamat-e-Islami and former deputy commissioner of Sylhet for dodging Tk 2,55,20,000 government revenue.

4 teachers lock Sust admin office

The vice-chancellor, registrar and other officials could not enter their offices as four associate professors, pressing for their 'due promotion', put the main gate of the administrative building of Shahjalal University of Science and Technology (SUST) under lock and key yesterday morning.

'Cancel Kosba pourasabha'

People in Kasba upazila headquarters have been holding processions and rallies for the last two days demanding cancellation of Kasba upazila as they have to pay municipal taxes without getting any service.

Suicide: Arrest of 'cheat' lover demanded

Leaders and activists of 10 NGOs and women's organizations in the district at a press conference yesterday demanded arrest of Abdul Wadood who allegedly cheated meritorious student Sharmin Sultana Rini in the name of love that led her to commit suicide.

Awareness programme by Apollo Hospitals

Apollo Hospitals, Dhaka recently organised Healthcare Awareness Programme for members of Khulna Club, says a press release.

Letters

Boosting food production

We welcome as well as thank our army chief for the advice that all arable lands, not under cultivation, be brought under the plough immediately to boost our food production. He also voiced his deep concern that there was no alternative for us, other than increasing our food production and becoming self-reliant. We have to produce our own foods and stop relying on import. Once we achieve this, I strongly feel that the value of our currency will go up.

Deforestation

The demand for food is increasing every day as the population is increasing at a dangerous pace. This will bring unprecedented and unsustainable demand on the country's remaining lands, forests and swamps. A massive leap in deforestation is clearly visible and it would add to global warming as the sea level continues to rise and will put pressure on our forests . The southern cost of Bangladesh will go under water in a period of 25-30 years, which will lead to further conflict and political unrest in the country.

Wage of garment workers

Different garment workers' associations have demanded monthly wage hike at a press conference held in the city. They have threatened to observe a hunger strike if their demand is not met.

Runaway population growth

It is a hard fact that Bangladesh is one of the most populous countries and in spite of different measures to control the population growth, we are far behind the target. Our poverty is primarily attributed to the number of mouths to feed in comparison to the land area and the available resources. The government is now strongly advocating the one child policy. The demerits of over population are well known & visible but we should also think of the potential benefits of a populous nation, some of which are:

Political philosophy

After 1/11 (Jan 11 2008), the political year 2008 in Dhaka has bogged down. No cooperation from the past political regimes ruling since 1991. The other parties are not in tune with the orchestration of the two major parties -- for obvious reasons, (the haves and the have-nots). The high food and fuel prices have slowed down and distracted the attention from the major theme of holding neutral general elections in Dec '08.

Drainage problem

In Dhaka city, we are facing many problems every day. I think everybody will agree with me on this point.

Poor education system

We should realise that the main reason behind the nation being backward is our poor education system. So effective plans should be formulated and implemented successfully. Some points are :

New ordinance for private universities

It is learnt from a report published in DS on 16th July 2008 that the Association of Private Universities of Bangladesh protested the proposed Private University Ordinance -2008, saying some of the rules in the ordinance will change the basic structure of private universities. The private universities are now run according to the Private University Act-1992 and its amendment 1998. I am neither a decision maker nor a protestor. I am just a victim of the complexities of the ordinance and its amendments. I am interested to know “what type of basic structure exists in the private universities at the moment”? The university is generally known as an academic institution of higher learning. There are several types of universities in the world such as:

Big questions!

Some recent developments in our present context have raised some big questions in people's minds. We've come to see Jamaat leader Matiur Rahman Nizami being released on bail. And the sudden resignation of the Attorney General -- all these incidents are, to a great extent, obscure to the citizens of the country.

Criminal infested Bashabo

Some criminals are very active in Bashabo area. They steal electric or cable wires around the area and burn them in secluded spots, filling the densely populated area with toxic fumes. The people around are forced to close their windows and cover their faces on streets. After burning the upper plastic cover, they extract the inner metal wires and sell them.

“Nirbachani Sanglap”

Recently, the Election commission, BBC Bangla, BTV and Bangladesh Betar jointly arranged a series of dialogues on upcoming city corporation elections. I was present in the inaugural session as a participant in Sylhet. It is undoubtedly a consequential venture on the way to democracy. Actually, I was displeased with the performance of the mayoral candidates but I think it has helped both sides to know each other. The candidates have known the matters that create great panic for the city dwellers. On the other hand, the voters have acquired an overall supposition about the qualifications (academic and relevant) of the candidates within a short time. Public consciousness about the candidates is indispensable to exercise voting right. It has created an opportunity to make the candidates answerable to the mass people. They have promised 'a lot of things' to the nation. If they fail to meet up those effectively, in future they will remain accountable to their voters.

“Neglected Khilgaon”

This refers to Mr. Akbar Hossain's letter published in your newspaper dated: July 13, 2007 with the headline "Neglected Khilgaon". I appreciate his concern for Khilgaon because I have also been living in Khilgaon for the last 30 years and have hardly seen any development. The construction of buildings was done haphazardly. No one knows whether there was any master plan for the area or not.

Introduce death penalty for adulteration

At present, the actual type of adulteration, as well as the number of adulterated items (used in a wider sense) in Bangladesh are unknown to ordinary people. Further, the quantity and the quality (in terms of say, degrees of adulteration) of adulterated items imported by the country - whether consciously or otherwise - are currently beyond the knowledge of the people. Factors such as: the role of the country's law enforcers and others in unearthing and dealing with relevant cases of adulteration and adulterated items in recent times; and the media projection (print, electronic) of those cases as applicable have been instrumental in opening up the eyes of public when it comes to behind the scene faces of adulterated fruits, adulterated medicines, adulterated fishes, spurious engineering materials and so on.

EC's role

If we remember correctly, a government high-up made an unpleasant remark about three commissioners of the ACC serving prior to this reorganised ACC. This at least invited a protest from one respected commissioner. The commissioner asked for an apology from him and also asked him to withdraw his comments. The adviser made the comment because of the inactive role of the three commissioners of the then ACC.

Death at DMCH

We are shocked to learn that a 48-year old farmer, Kazi Abul Hashem, whose family came to Dhaka from Brahmanbaria for his better treatment at the DMCH, lost his life after he remained unattended at the emergency for long six hours.

International

Nepal crisis far from over as Maoists refuse to form govt

Nepal's Maoists said yesterday they would not form the Himalayan nation's first post-royal government after the defeat of their candidate for president, setting off a new political crisis here.

Rahul defends nuclear pact in key debate

Rahul Gandhi, son of India's ruling Congress party chief Sonia, on Tuesday defended a nuclear pact with Washington that has prompted a confidence vote in the Indian government.

Visions of India up for debate in parliament

As India's parliament votes on the future of an embattled coalition and a nuclear energy deal with Washington, differing visions of the country's place in the world have emerged in the debate.

Suu Kyi's detention to last until 2009

Myanmar's foreign minister has said pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi can be kept in detention legally until late 2009 and not until December this year as reported earlier, Singapore officials said Tuesday.

Karadzic and the largest mass murder in Europe since WWII

The massacre of around 8,000 Muslims in Srebrenica in July 1995 stands out as the worst carnage of the Bosnian war and the largest mass murder in Europe since the Second World War.

Psychiatrist-turned 'Butcher of Bosnia’

Radovan Karadzic, whose Interpol charges listed "flamboyant behavior" as a distinguishing characteristic, was a practicing psychiatrist who came to be nicknamed the "Butcher of Bosnia."

World hails Karadzic arrest

World leaders united in hailing Serbia yesterday for the arrest of indicted war criminal Radovan Karadzic, with only Russia sounding a contrary note over whether he would receive a fair trial.

Relief but little joy for Srebrenica families

For the families of those he stands accused of massacring, relief at the arrest of Radovan Karadzic is profound but not deep enough to drown the memories of the past.

Bhutan formally adopts new constitution

The tiny Himalayan nation of Bhutan has formally adopted a new constitution that transforms it from an absolute to a constitutional monarchy, a move initiated by its royal family.

Benazir's guard killed in Pak attack

Unidentified gunmen on motorcycles shot dead a security guard of slain former Pakistani prime minister Benazir Bhutto in the southern port city of Karachi on Tuesday, police and officials said.

Arts & Entertainment

"Nakshi Kantha Film Festival" begins in Kolkata

The Gorky Sadan at the Russian Centre for Science and Culture in Kolkata has been decorated with posters of seven Bangladeshi movies. The occasion is the six-day "Nakshi Kantha Film Festival," -- inaugurated by eminent Indian filmmaker Mrinal Sen.

Birangana Hasna Banu remembered

"My village didn't accept me, neither did my husband. I had to take shelter in the near-by woods. However, my mother was sympathetic and secretly brought me food, though it was once a day, in the darkness of night usually. This is how I lived until a rehabilitation centre took me in.”

Lalu Bhai passes away

The evergreen comic actor A. F. M. Abdul Ali Lalu is no more. Popularly known as "Lalu Bhai", the actor passed away at the age of 76 on July 21. He had been ailing from various old age complications and was bedridden at his Brahmapalli residence in the district town for a while. He left behind his wife, six sons, a daughter and many well-wishers.

Poet Bonde Ali's 29th death anniversary observed in Pabna

The 29th death anniversary of the poet Bonde Ali Mian was celebrated with much festivity. A discussion and colourful cultural programme was organised on Saturday on the occasion. Pabna district administration and Pabna Shilpakala Academy jointly organised the programme at Pabna Bonomali auditorium.

Bangladesh Mahila Parishad stages play at RU

The Rajshahi University (RU) unit of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad (BMP) staged a play titled Chourasta (meaning intersection/ crossroads) at Kazi Nazrul Islam Auditorium, RU last Sunday.

Weaving: An indigenous heritage in Chittagong Hill Tracts

The 13 indigenous communities of Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) have their enduring traditions, cultures and heritages. One popular art is weaving. Most women of the 13 indigenous communities, including Chakma, Marma, Tripura, Rakhain, Tanchangya, Khumi, Banjughi and Byom, know how to weave clothing material and generate a reasonable income, along with fulfilling family needs.

Weeklong tree fair in Jhenidah

A grand cultural programme, performed by Shilpi Sangho Institute was held in Jhenidah on July 20. This was held on the occasion of a 4th day tree plantation movement and agriculture fair-2008. The initiative was taken by The district administration, agricultural directorate and forest department.

Yeats meets the digital age

Under airtight, light-shielding glass, is a notebook given to William Butler Yeats in 1908 by Maud Gonne, the beautiful, brainy feminist Irish revolutionary and object of Yeats' infatuation across five decades, the muse -- well, really, the furnace -- for his poetry of yearning and his willing partner in what they called a mystical marriage. As far as actual marriage, Gonne became expert at wielding the word “no.”

OP-ED

Political reform: Myth and reality

POLITICAL reform means reform of political parties and all the political institutions connected with political practice for functioning and advancement of the political process.

Quota system for civil service

THIS piece is intended mainly to endorse the views of Kamal Uddin Ahmed expressed in his article under the heading "Quota system for civil service" published in the Daily Star on July 18, and also to add some of my own views on the subject.

After the 'surge'

TO see what peace looks like in Baghdad, go to the Karrada district. At dusk, Iraqi families picnic in a thin stretch of park recently built on the banks of the Tigris River. A couple of blocks away, along lively Sadoun Street, sidewalk restaurants flame-roast chickens on long spits and a crowd of teenagers spills out of a bright new juice shop.

Notes from the land before email

A friend of mine regularly organises business deals between small and medium-sized companies in odd bits of darkest Asia. Complex jobs are tricky enough in modern cities, where data can be accurately transferred by the Internet.

Star City

Changing delights of Dhakai delicacies

The morning dawned amid loud crow of cocks. Rotiwalahs (bread makers) prepared their tandoors one after another with flames dancing over… There were not many clocks to know the time… Rain or shine, the sizzling flames of tandoors in the alleys announced the start of the day… As long as my memory goes, the Dhaka dwellers always relished freshly baked bakarkhani for breakfast…

Middle class moving to superstores

Traditional kitchen markets in the city have started losing a big chunk of their middle class customers to the growing number of superstores.


The Daily Star

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