The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Sunday, December 21, 2014


News of: Thursday, 14th of August, 2008

Front Page

Bapex revved up

For the first time the government has increased gas sale tariff for Bangladesh Petroleum Exploration Company (Bapex) to Tk 25 per thousand cubic metre (mcf) from a miserly Tk 7 to help the company financially grow, sources said.

Terrible tailbacks, agonising waits

Private employee Rezowan Biswas yesterday failed to attend an official meeting as he could not reach his office in time due to severe traffic jam that eats up huge man-hour in the capital every day.

Ctg to get emergency gas, rental power plant

The Council of Advisers at its meeting here yesterday decided to provide 20 mcf (million cubic feet) additional gas and set up a 50-MW rental power plant for immediate and short-term solutions to the acute gas and power crises prevailing in Chittagong.

Olympics' new king is Phelps

Michael Phelps became the greatest Olympian of all time Wednesday winning two gold medals in the space of an hour to lift his career total to an unprecedented 11 on his charge to Olympic immortality.

BNP, allies sit today as 72-hr deadline ends

The BNP-led four-party alliance will sit today to discuss new plan of action to secure Khaleda Zia's release from prison as their 72-hour deadline to the government ended last night.

ACC to send list of 17 applicants to Tac

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has decided to send a list of 17 government officials to the Truth and Accountability Commission (Tac) following their applications to the ACC for confessing corruption voluntarily.

EC to decide fate of Barisal councillor -elect soon

The Election Commission (EC) will soon decide whether to cancel the candidature of Mortuza Abedin, councillor-elect of Barisal City Corporation (BCC), as an official inquiry found him guilty of concealing information about criminal cases filed against him.

Wasa's reservoir gets encroached

The second phase of the Kalyanpur pump station project, aimed at improving water logging in the western part of the capital, might not generate expected results due to unabated urbanisation inside the restricted area for building a water-retention reservoir.

Koko's graft case stayed for 3 months

The High Court (HC) yesterday stayed for three months the proceedings of a case against Arafat Rahman Koko filed for accumulating illegal wealth and hiding information from the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

AL leader gunned down in city

Unidentified criminals yesterday shot dead a businessman and local Awami League (AL) leader in the capital's Shyampur area.

HC grants bail to 16 detained politicos, businessmen

The High Court (HC) yesterday granted ad-interim bail to 16 politicians and businessmen, who were arrested in the caretaker government's anti-graft drive.

Govt not allowed to appeal against HC stay on 2 cases against Hasina

The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday did not permit the government to file regular appeals against the High Court (HC) orders that stayed the proceedings against Sheikh Hasina in the Niko and barge-mounted power plant corruption cases.

50 RMG workers hurt in joint forces action

Over 50 workers of a garment factory at Shreepur in Gazipur were injured yesterday when members of the joint forces, Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) and police fired gunshots and teargas shells and charged truncheons on them.

82 workers deported from Jordan to get compensation

US-based Steve and Barry, the buyer of Caliber Garments factory in Jordan, will provide compensation to the factory's 82 Bangladeshi workers deported from Jordan without payment of their arrears.

AL asks CG to announce JS poll schedule immediately

Awami League (AL) leaders yesterday asked the caretaker government to announce schedule for the ninth parliamentary election without further delay and give up the idea of holding upazila parishad polls first.

Kamran denied bail, Mirza Azam's bail stayed by HC

A Sylhet court yesterday rejected a bail prayer of detained Sylhet City Corporation (SCC) Mayor Badar Uddin Ahmed Kamran in a case filed against him on charge of possessing foreign liquor.

TCB to import commodities before Ramadan

Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB), a state-run enterprise, has decided to import pulses, edible oil, onion and chickpea (Chhola) to keep the market prices of the essentials at a tolerable level during the holy month of Ramadan.

Gas cylinder blast kills 1

An elderly person was killed and five others injured yesterday as the cylinder of a CNG-run bus exploded at Kararchar of Shibpur upazila in Narsingdi.

SC stays bail to Mirza Azam

The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday stayed for one month the High Court (HC) order granting bail to Awami Jubo League General Secretary and former lawmaker Mirza Azam in a corruption case filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

Russian convoy violates truce, heads into Georgia

Russian troops and paramilitaries thrust deep into Georgia yesterday, rolling into the strategic city of Gori and violating the truce designed to end the six-day war that has uprooted 100,000 people and scarred the Georgian landscape.

Musharraf has decided to quit, says Pak daily

With pressure piling up on Pakistan's embattled President Pervez Musharraf, the former military ruler has decided in principle to quit and will announce his decision in this regard on the country's Independence Day on August 14 (today), a media report has said.

16 killed in latest Lanka clashes

Fifteen Tamil Tiger rebels and one soldier have been killed in fresh clashes across Sri Lanka's tense northern front, the defence ministry said yesterday.

Rice told Georgia to avoid conflict with Russia

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice privately warned Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili to avoid a conflict with Russia during her trip to Tbilisi in July, The New York Times reported Wednesday.

Editorial

Stop “crossfire” deaths

THE condemnation of Rab by the US-based Human Rights Watch comes as no surprise to us. We warned the government, time and again, that the crossfire deaths were undermining the edifice of the whole judicial process and whatever Rab had achieved in its anti- terrorism drive. The introduction of the crack force had a positive impact on the crime situation as proliferation of terrorist organisations was threatening law and order. The Rab's efficiency in containing the threat was commendable, but nothing could justify the deaths in crossfire, the accounts of which invariably followed the same pattern.

Horrendous scale of spousal abuse

THE recent study conducted by CPD in which is was revealed that the cost of physical healthcare related to spousal violence amounts to over 4 per cent of GDP is shocking news and should serve as a wake-up call to all of us. Indeed, the study merely puts a taka figure on an extremely serious problem that has plagued our society and gone unheeded for far too long.

Preparation of voter list and NID card: A notable feat

THERE were more doubting Thomases than those who believed that the EC would be able to meet the deadline for the preparation of a final voter list with photographs. Not everyone realises what a tremendous achievement it has been, given that we have also got our national identification (NID) card, for all those that were involved in the process, right from its conceptualisation 'till its completion. No one should grudge the EC for organising a celebratory function marking the end of the project, although it would have served the cause of politics and democracy better had the EC also included the leaders of the major political parties in its guest list.

The siege within

WHEN religion is mixed with politics, the result is what has happened at Srinagar and Jammu. Several people have been killed; property worth crores has been burnt, and life in both the regions has practically come to a standstill.

'Sinful Saakashvili' or hero?

ONE of the more lingering images from the Georgia crisis may be footage of Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili's bodyguards throwing him to the ground and covering him with flak jackets as a Russian jet zoomed above. Witnessed by journalists from Newsweek and other outlets on Monday morning in Gori, the incident signified the seeming powerlessness of Georgia in the face of Russian military might.

Sports

China leads the pack

China erupted Wednesday when its women won their first team gymnastics Olympic gold medal, with further success in shooting, diving, and weightlifting adding to the elation.

India win Challenge Cup

Sunil Chettri was India's hero as the forward fired a hattrick to help the hosts lift the AFC Challenge Cup with a crushing 4-1 victory over defending champions Tajikistan in the final at Ambedkar Stadium in New Delhi yesterday.

Georgia beat Russia

As the bloody war between Georgia and Russia raged on at home, athletes representing the two countries faced-off at the Olympics here Wednesday.

ICC must sway players

As the ICC task force wrapped up its visit to Pakistan to assess security concerns ahead of September's Champions Trophy, its real work begins now. Members of the panel will head to Australia, New Zealand and England, where they will also meet with South Africa, in a bid to convince top players from the countries not to pull out over security concerns.

'Be positive against Mendis'

India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni said Wednesday his batsmen needed to be positive against Sri Lanka's latest spin sensation Ajantha Mendis in the upcoming one-day series.

Jin can now propose to his wife

South Korean shooter Jin Jong Oh had planned to propose with a gold medal in 2004. However, at the Athens Games, he grabbed a silver instead in men's 50-meter pistol.

Tigers off to Darwin

Mohammad Ashraful's men are scheduled to leave for the Australian city of Darwin in the early hours of Thursday to play a three-match ODI series.

Pioneer League final today

BKSP will take on Rampura Club in the final of the Dhaka City Corporation Pioneer Football League today.

Academy play 2nd 4-dayer today

The visiting GP-BCB National Cricket Academy take on their South African counterparts in the second four-day match at Laudiam in Pretoria today.

Spin camp from Aug 24

A spin bowlers' camp will take place from August 24 at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur.

Vaughan afraid of Twenty20

Former England captain Michael Vaughan fears the lure of lucrative Twenty20 competitions could turn young players into sloggers who won't be interested in Test cricket.

Best even with his eyes closed

Michael Phelps couldn't see as he swam the last 75 meters of the men's 200-meter butterfly on Wednesday, because his goggles came loose at the start. And though Phelps' underwater kick may resemble a dolphin's, there is no evidence that he has porpoise-like sonar abilities, making his gold-record performance even more remarkable.

The naked truth!

Federica Pellegrini became Italy's first female Olympic swimming champion on Wednesday with a record-breaking performance achieved by wearing two swim suits.

Liu cracks world record

Liu Chunhong broke three world records in the women's 69-kilogram division Wednesday, defending her Olympic title to win China's sixth gold medal in the weightlifting competition.

Heavy price of silver

Chellsie Memmel's ankle injury was worse than anyone realized.

Tearful exit for Beard

Amanda Beard, who won hearts as a teddy-bear toting 14-year-old at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, won't get the chance to defend her 200m breaststroke gold in the final at the Beijing Games.

Arch-rivals stay on course

Argentina and Brazil remained on course for a semifinal showdown in the men's Olympic football competition as the final eight sorted themselves out in the last round of Group matches Wednesday.

Cheating claims flare up

Claims of questionable officiating and even cheating flared Wednesday with the Olympic shooting and boxing competitions coming under fire.

Starlets ready to shine

For once Arsene Wenger isn't the only manager with a host of young starlets at his disposal as the Premier League's other leading clubs prepare to showcase their own gifted prodigies.

Six matches at Gazipur

Six second-phase matches of the Citycell Federation Cup will be played at the Gazipur Stadium when the competition resumes next Sunday after a weeklong break.

Prisons, Army victorious

Prisons Directorate beat Bangladesh Air Force 31-12 in a preliminary round match of the 28th National Kabaddi Championship at the Kabaddi Stadium yesterday.

Mohammedan's fun matches from today

Mohammedan Sporting Club will organises 'fun matches' in the city from today in a bid to bring back the good old football crowd to the Bangabandhu National Stadium.

Business

Country faces severe dearth of chartered accountants

The country is facing a severe dearth of chartered accountants (CAs) as less than 1,000 qualified CAs are working at different levels against the requirement of about 12,000, according to an estimate of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Bangladesh (ICAB).

BB for a well-functioning bond market

The central bank yesterday said a well-functioning bond market is required to strengthen the country's financial sector.

Mobile operators add 1.1m new customers in July

The country's mobile operators added 1.1million new customers in July, showing slow growth compared to previous months.

Japan on brink of recession

Japan said Wednesday its economy contracted in the second quarter as falling exports and weak consumer spending sent Asia's largest economy hurtling toward its first recession in six years.

Rich world must restart WTO talks: India

India has urged developed nations to return to the negotiating table to hammer out a new global trade deal -- but only if they are willing to give and not just look for what they can get.

CCCI keen to set up scanner at Ctg port without govt finance

The Chittagong Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) expressed interest to set up container scanning machine at the Chittagong port with the chamber's own funds and without any financial involvement of the government.

Bureaucratic structures translate into administrative barriers

An inappropriate bureaucratic structure results in various administrative barriers and affects not only the private sectors but also the regulators, experts said at a discussion yesterday.

Best Air's Dhaka-Dubai route to start Aug 27

Best Air, the country's third private airline, is likely to start its Dhaka-Dubai-Dhaka route from August 27.

Warid signs agreement with Grameen CyberNet

Warid Telecom yesterday signed an agreement with Grameen CyberNet Limited (GCL) in Dhaka to provide complete telecommunication services under its corporate package, said a press release.

4th Chef of the Year 2008 competition launched

The 4th Monitor Malaysian Palm Oil 'Chef of the Year 2008' competition was launched yesterday to promote and popularise the country's traditional food and search for culinary talents.

Indian industrial growth slows in June

India's industrial output grew by just 5.4 percent in June, down sharply from the rate a year earlier, data showed Tuesday, in another sign that Asia's third-largest economy is slowing.

AKTEL to launch mobile medical services

AKTEL, the country's third largest mobile phone operator yesterday announced the launch of mobile medical services for its customers.

French connection

When Carrefour entered the Chinese market in 1995, the French supermarket chain chose to do it quietly, kind of like testing the water rather than making a splash. There was no marching band or lion dance to announce the opening of its first outlet in Beijing.

Wikinomics and importance of national self-confidence

In today's column I wanted to touch on two themes: firstly, encouraging signs of growing student engagement in the Brand Bangladesh initiative. Secondly, the concept of Wikinomics in our efforts to change both our country image as well as build our national self-confidence. While these may seem disparate themes I have picked at random, mass collaboration and our branding initiative are more closely connected than we realise.

Stock prices fall on investors' shakiness

After a rise for two days, Dhaka stocks fell yesterday with all the key indices declined by more than one percent.

Rupali Life Ins to list on DSE by December

Rupali Life Insurance Company expects to list on the Dhaka Stock Exchange within December this year.

SIFY Tech appoints Innosol as agent

Sify Technologies has appointed Innosol Associates, a sister concern of Ice Technologies and Brightstar Telecom, as its exclusive agent in Bangladesh.

iPhone to shake-up Japan's cellphone industry

The arrival of Apple's iPhone 3G will force Japanese cellphone makers to revamp their handsets to allow increasingly sophisticated software, a senior official at Softbank Mobile said Wednesday.

GM to invest $445m in Thai auto plants

General Motors will invest 445 million dollars to build a new diesel engine plant and to upgrade an existing assembly plant in Thailand, chief executive Rick Wagoner said Wednesday.

Mitsubishi UFJ to tie up with Tata for mergers

Mitsubishi UFJ Financial, Japan's largest banking group, said Wednesday it was tying up with the Tata Group in a deal that would help Indian firms seek more acquisitions overseas.

British jobless claims surge in July

The number of people claiming jobless benefits in Britain leapt in July by the biggest monthly amount for more than 15 years, according to official data published Wednesday.

Metropolitan

Public awareness, edn a must to fight AIDS in Asian region

Speakers at a seminar in the port city yesterday underscored the need for proper education among the women to create competent leadership for fighting AIDS and social problems prevailing in the South and South East Asian region.

JCD internal feud gears up after president's release

After the release of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) President Azizul Baree Helal, the internal feud of the party is gearing up on the Dhaka University (DU) campus.

Support students with guidelines

Speakers at a seminar yesterday expressed deep concern over higher education in the country and suggested ways and means to improve the methodology of teaching with improved curriculum to flourish the intellect thereby enlarging the knowledge base of students in line with scientific, technological innovation and global changes.

Private sector initiatives a must to ensure health services

Nobel laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus yesterday stressed the need for multifaceted initiatives by private sector alongside government efforts to ensure health services for the people.

GF concerned over govt's flexible attitude towards corrupt suspects

The standing committee of Gono Forum at a meeting yesterday expressed concern over flexible attitude towards the identified criminals and corrupt suspects.

Wife, son seek justice

Family members of Rustam Ali Hawlader, who was killed over a land dispute, yesterday demanded punishment to the killers and a sub-inspector (SI) of police who allegedly masterminded the murder.

Nizami claims anti-liberation war forces issue settled

Jamaat-e-Islami Ameer Motiur Rahman Nizami yesterday claimed that the issue of anti-liberation war forces was settled during the regime of late Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

Road crashes kill 7, injure 47

At least seven people were killed and 47 others injured in separate road accidents in Faridpur, Brahmanbaria and Sirajganj yesterday.

Ties to be strengthened further in coming days

Visiting Commander of the Sri Lankan Navy Vice Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda made a courtesy call on President Iajuddin Ahmed at Bangabhaban yesterday.

Showdown of Shibir men at DU halls

Although the activities of Islami Chhatra Shibir, student front of Jamaat-e-Islami, are forbidden on the Dhaka University (DU) campus, the organisation is active at Sergeant Zahurul Haq Hall allegedly taking shelter from the hall authorities and Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) leaders.

Religious leaders vow to resist drug, militancy in Tangail

Religious leaders in Tangail town at a view-exchange meeting with law enforcers yesterday vowed to resist drug trading, terrorism and militancy in the district.

Youths don't get due attention

Although the youths are about one-third of the total population, they are not getting due attention, speakers at a seminar said on Tuesday.

Project to meet Bureau of Statistics' crucial need for data

A technical assistance project on capacity building of the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) has started operation from April 2008 to meet the crucial need for current statistical data to monitor poverty levels and the welfare of households.

Two bogies of train derail in Thakurgaon

Train communication on Thakurgaon-Panchagarh route remained suspended as two bogies of a local train derailed near Akhanagar under sadar upazila yesterday.

HC order on Sheikh Selim's writ today

The High Court (HC) will deliver an order today on a writ petition filed by detained Awami League (AL) presidium member Sheikh Fazlul Karim Selim challenging the legality of the initiation and continuation of the extortion case filed by businessman Azam J Chowdhury against him.

PKSF, AIS sign MoU

Palli Karma-Sahayak Foundation (PKSF) and Agriculture Information Services (AIS) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to disseminate technical issues of farming and success stories of the farmers benefited by the microfinance programme of PKSF by telecasting programmes in media, says a press release.

Five BCL men assaulted by rival faction

A group of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) activists of Ziaur Rahman Hall of Dhaka University beat up five activists of another group last night to establish dominance on the campus.

Doctors demand probe into extrajudicial killing of Tutul

Nineteen doctors in a joint statement on Tuesday demanded judicial investigation into the extrajudicial killing of Communist Party of East Bengal (CPEB-ML red flag) leader Dr Mizanur Rahman Tutul.

Schoolgirl suffers acid burn

A schoolgirl suffered burn after a neighbouring boy threw acid on her last night at Mirpur in the city last night.

Garment workers protest delay in salary payment

Several hundred workers of a garment factory in the city's Rampura area protesting delay in their salary payment yesterday staged a demonstration.

Listed criminal held in city

Members of the Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) arrested a listed criminal from Khilgaon area in the city on Tuesday night and recovered 50 bullets from his possession.

Man to die for killing wife in Bhola

A court here sentenced one person to death and fined Tk 25,000 for killing his wife two years ago.

'Execute court verdict soon'

Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) yesterday reiterated their demand for immediate execution of the High Court verdict on Bangabandhu murder case.

Smuggled goods worth Tk 2.78cr seized in Comilla

Members of Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) seized a huge quantity of smuggled goods worth around Tk 2.78 crore from Tiprabazar in Comilla early yesterday.

Conference on women rights begins tomorrow

Soroptimist International Club of Dhaka, Bangladesh organises a two-day South Asian Conference with the theme 'Women's Rights: South Asian Perspectives' at the Spectra Convention Centre in the city beginning tomorrow.

Editors of Ctg dailies meet chief adviser

Six editors of local dailies of the port city made a courtesy call on Chief Adviser Fakhruddin

Teacher registration exams Oct 17-18

The 4th teacher registration examinations for non-government educational institutions will be held in 20 district towns on October 17-18.

BAU syndicate decides to dismiss Prof Mahfuzur

The syndicate of Bangladesh Agriculture University (BAU), Mymensingh has decided to dismiss Prof Mahfuzur Rahman of agricultural finance department from his service as per relevant university acts.

War Museum's programme on Bangabandhu today

To commemorate the death anniversary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the Liberation War Museum organises a special programme with the participation of the new generation on its premises in the city today, says a press release.

2 firearms seized in Benapole

Members of the Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) seized a revolver, a pistol and one round of bullet from Baro Achra village in Benapole yesterday.

One killed as abandoned grenade explodes in Ghatail

A day labourer was killed and another injured when an abandoned grenade exploded at Jharka Firing Range in Ghatail upazila in Tangail Tuesday evening.

Anwar Zahid passes away

Veteran journalist and former information minister Anwar Zahid passed away at a city hospital last night at the age of 73.

National

Local engineers save Tk 100cr in foreign currency

Foreign currency equivalent to Tk 100 crore has been saved as engineers and technicians of Ashuganj Power Station Company Limited (APSCL) have successfully repaired 150 megawatt Unit 3.

Retrial of Prof Taher murder case demanded

Rajshahi University (RU) Geology and Mining Department teachers, students and officials yesterday demanded retrial of Prof S Taher Ahmed Murder Case after proper reinvestigation.

It was a planned incident, says probe body member

The three-member probe committee formed Monday night by Khulna Metropolitan Police Commissioner has made some headway in investigation into the recovery of counterfoils of ballots and unused ballot papers outside the polling centre No 8 and from in front of Uadayan club in ward no-29 in Khulna city.

Khulna BNP bigwig demands CEC's resignation

Member-secretary of Khulna city BNP convening committee Shaharuzzaman Martuza yesterday demanded resignation of the Chief Election Commissioner and two other Election Commissioners for what he called holding stage-managed elections to four city corporations and nine pourasavas to make AL mayoral candidates winners.

'Rebel' Khulna AL leaders to face action

Khulna Awami League will take disciplinary action against one mayoral and 38 councillor candidates who contested the August 4 KCC elections defying decision of the party.

Bank of Ceylon manager sued in Sylhet

Authorities of Commercial Bank of Ceylon has filed a case against the manager of the bank's Sylhet branch, Shibli A Chowdhury, who went into hiding along with his family on June 1 after misappropriating a huge amount of money from depositors' accounts.

GPA-5 achievers vow to fight graft

GPA-5 achievers at two reception ceremonies held in Satkhira and Barisal yesterday vowed to uproot corruption and build an enlightened society.

Ex-UP chairman held for offering bribe to Rab

Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) arrested a former union parishad chairman and his two companions for trying to bribe Rab members in Pabna Rab camp on Tuesday.

4 clinics closed in Thakurgaon

Four clinics have been sealed off in Thakurgaon town for operating illegally.

Correction

A report tilted 'CHT Commission ends Bandarban visit' that was published on the National page of The Daily Star on August 12 incorrectly mentioned that USA citizen Thomas Christian Eskildsen, Dutch citizen MS Adrienne Maria Jacoba Arens and Bangladeshi citizen Dr Meghna Guhathakurata are members of the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) Commission. In fact the first two went to CHT as observers for the Commission while Dr Meghna Guhathakurata is advisor to the Commission. We regret the inadvertent mistake.

International

Sindh assembly votes against Musharraf

Legislators in southern Pakistan voted yesterday for a resolution against President Pervez Musharraf, officials said, in the latest prelude to the US-backed leader's possible impeachment.

Kashmir protests spread to Indian cities

Riots erupted across Indian-controlled Kashmir yesterday as Muslims mourned 15 people killed in a day of bloody violence, as the protests spread to other parts of India.

US missile strike kills 10 militants in Pakistan

A suspected US missile strike on an Islamist training camp in a Pakistani tribal area bordering Afghanistan killed at least 10 militants, security officials said yesterday.

Musharraf's successor to remove "handcuffs" on Parliament: Zardari

President Pervez Musharraf's days in office are numbered and a new head of state elected in consultation with members of the ruling coalition will ensure there are no "handcuffs" on the parliament, PPP co-chairman Asif Ali Zardari has said.

Nepal looks for replacement of king's role

As Nepal adjusts to life without a monarchy, the country is now trying to decide who should inherit the role of keeper of its all-important Hindu celebrations.

Three int'l aid workers die in Afghan attack

Gunmen wielding assault rifles ambushed a US aid organisation's vehicle one province south of Kabul yesterday, killing an American-Trinidadian aid worker along with a Canadian and a British-Canadian colleague, officials said.

What will happen to Indo-Pak peace talks after Musharraf?

It's a change of heart that reflects how low India-Pakistan relations have sunk in recent months and the fears that they haven't yet hit bottom with Pakistan being blamed for blowing up India's embassy in Afghanistan and repeated shootings along the disputed frontier in Kashmir.

Development linked to women: Obama

Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama linked the level of a country's development to the way women are treated in an interview to appear in the US edition of the monthly woman's magazine Marie-Claire.

Bus bomb kills 14 in South Lebanon

A bomb blast targeting the Lebanese army killed nine soldiers and five civilians in the northern city of Tripoli yetserday hours before a landmark visit by President Michel Sleiman to Syria.

US against strike on Iran: Ehud Barak

The United States is at present opposed to any military strike against Iranian nuclear facilities, Israeli Defence Minister Ehud Barak said yesterday.

S Ossetia militia attacking ethnic Georgians: report

South Ossetian militia have been looting and burning ethnic Georgian villages in the breakaway region, Human Rights Watch reported yesterday.

Pro-Israeli remarks ire Iranian lawmakers

More than 200 conservative Iranian lawmakers lashed out on at a top aide to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad yesterday over his controversial remarks that Iranians are "friends with Israelis."

'Questioning Saakashvili's legitimacy not acceptable'

German Chancellor Angela Merkel believes it is "totally unacceptable" for the legitimacy of Georgia's democratically elected government to be put into question, her spokesman said yesterday.

20 die in India building collapse

At least 20 people died and 21 others were injured yesterday when part of a four-storey building collapsed in India's financial capital Mumbai, police said.

Indonesia will revoke Thaksin's diplomatic passport

Thailand's foreign minister said yesterday his ministry would revoke former premier Thaksin Shinawatra and his wife's diplomatic passports after they fled to exile in Britain.

China floods claim 40 lives

Landslides and flash floods have killed at least 40 people in southwest China, and 16,000 have been forced to evacuate their homes, state media reported yesterday.

Two killed in south Thai attacks

Two people were killed and 21 wounded yesterday in separate bomb and shooting attacks by suspected separatist rebels operating in Thailand's Muslim-majority south, police said.

Fresh flood in Vietnam

Three people including a 13-year-old boy were killed in fresh floods in northern Vietnam while the death toll in the wake of tropical storm Kammuri rose to 119, disaster officials said yesterday.

Arts & Entertainment

Of devotion, grace and subtlety

Apparently, in 1919 Rabindranath Tagore was so impressed after seeing a dance composition, the Goshtha Leela in Sylhet (Bangladesh) that he introduced Manipuri dance lessons in Shantiniketan. Tagore further demonstrated his admiration for Manipuri dance by incorporating the style in most of his dance-dramas.

Crouching tigers and serene beauty

Hoping to have some study of traditional Chinese paintings, one has only to stop at Bengal Gallery of Fine Arts. Here are watercolours of traditional Chinese paintings with magnificent study of lions and tigers at repose and action. They have been created on paper and silk with ink and water. This is done freehand style.

Theatre festival at Dhaka University opens

The nine-day theatre festival organised by the Department of Theatre and Music, University of Dhaka (DU), was inaugurated on August 12 by National Professor Kabir Chowdhury at Natmandal, DU campus.

Tile exhibition: An art with a difference

Tiles as an art form? This unusual subject is the theme of an exhibition in New Delhi. Titled Treasure Trove, the People for Animals (an NGO) collection features exquisite handmade and hand-painted 7,000 tiles which date back over 100 years. The tiles can embellish walls, doors, toilets, kitchens, chairs, tables, trays, fire places, bedsides, window sills, doorways and wall hangings.

Jolie ‘‘to take Cruise's movie role’’

Actress Angelina Jolie is to play the lead role in an action thriller, which was previously earmarked for Tom Cruise, according to a report.

“Brishtir Jonnyo” on ntv

First episode of Brishtir Jonnyo, a 26-episode drama serial, will be aired tonight at 9:45 pm on ntv. Written by Pantha Shahriar and directed by Amlan Biswas, the cast of the serial includes Ferdausi Majumdar, Aupi Karim, Traupa Majumdar, Abul Hayat, Shahiduzzaman Selim, Shams Sumon, Intekhab Dinar, Rounak Hasan, Shatabdi Wadud and others.

Talented students accorded reception

The daily Prothom Alo, mobile phone operator AKTEL and 'Prothom Alo Bandhu Sabha' jointly accorded a reception to over 200 meritorious students who scored GPA-5 at the SSC examination this year. A cultural function was also held on the occasion.

OP-ED

Political psyche against upazila polls

ARTICLE 59 of the Bangladesh constitution guarantees the establishment of local elected bodies at various levels. But establishment of local bodies did not receive due attention of our governments until the early 1980s. The government of General Ershad upgraded British-created thanas (police stations) to upazilas (sub-districts), which started working in the new districts elevated from the earlier local administrative units -- the "sub-divisions."

The lost songs

RURAL Bangladesh turns emerald green during monsoons. This is not a new phenomenon, but I discovered it afresh when I visited my village last week. After a dull and sultry summer, life becomes vibrant again with the monsoons in every nook and cranny of the countryside. Almost all the villages in Bangladesh, and the houses, are surrounded by different trees, grasses, shrubs and bamboo clusters.

Spaces of despair

IT is hard not to be pessimistic about Bangladesh. Every now and then when a ray of sunshine tries to wash away the gloom, a patch of dark cloud appears on the horizon in no time. 1/11 brought a swath of sunshine; expectations were raised, and roadmaps were chalked out.

Why your expensive child is the biggest bargain on earth

IT costs the same to raise a child in any particular city as it does to buy a nice three-bedroom house in the same place, researchers have found.

Star Chittagong

Butterfly park opens at Patenga soon

A park brimming with butterflies of exotic species, first of its kind, is going to open in the port city within next three months.

Drug peddling on the rise

Sale of drugs has increased in the port city in an alarming rate, much to the concern of common people in general and guardians in particular.

The Week That Was

'Local body elections were fair'
Speakers at a workshop said the recent local government elections were held in a free and fair manner but the people were deprived of the honest and the efficient representatives.



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