The Daily Star

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Thursday, July 31, 2014


News of: Tuesday, 16th of September, 2008

Front Page

BNP knot in talks starts to untie fast

The Election Commission (EC) might sit with BNP in a day or two, and announce dates for upazila and parliamentary polls early next week.

Govt at final stage to hold fair polls by December

Chief Adviser (CA) Fakhruddin Ahmed yesterday said his government is at the final stage of achieving its goal to hold a free, fair and credible general election by December this year.

Patients turn up for ‘torture’ at DMCH

Facilities available at the 1,700-bed Dhaka Medical College and Hospital (DMCH) are inadequate to meet the demand of patients who throng there every day for treatment.

Two leaders have to sit for talks

Commerce and Education Adviser Hossain Zillur Rahman yesterday pinned hopes on patience and pressure to make the chiefs of Awami League and BNP -- Sheikh Hasina and Khaleda Zia -- sit together for a discussion.

Disputed channels rule first day's talks

On the first day of Bangladesh-India Maritime Delimitation Talks that resumed yesterday in the capital after 28 years, the issue of determining the main flow of Hariabhanga channels featured prominently as delegates discussed the starting point of demarcation.

Industrialist gunned down

Armed criminals yesterday gunned down an industrialist in broad daylight at Kakrail in the capital.

BNP to part ways with Hawa Bhaban soon

The BNP is soon going to close its chairperson's Hawa Bhaban office, which became the alternative powerhouse within the BNP-led four-party coalition government and earned the reputation as "epicentre of corruption" during 2001-2006.

7 Titas, Desa men have only Tk 5 lakh

Seven Titas Gas and Dhaka Electricity Supply Authority (Desa) staffs yesterday voluntarily disclosed before the Truth and Accountability Commission (Tac) of having ill-gotten wealth worth only about Tk 5 lakh.

Toxic ship gets scrap nod

Playing down the environmental and public health concerns, the shipping ministry has allowed a ship-breaker to scrap an oil tanker blacklisted by environmental group Greenpeace for containing hazardous substances.

Lalmatia roads promise moon ride

It was a soggy afternoon when Shikha, a resident of Jakir Hossain Road of Mohammadpur, went out to visit her relatives in Lalmatia Block-B. She could not hire a rickshaw to take her to Lalmatia as they were charging more than double the normal fair.

Projects fail over lax planning, monitoring

Poorly designed projects and their haphazard implementation in the absence of strict monitoring led to total failure of many projects and wastage of public funds.

4-party sits today to talk dialogue

Key leaders of the BNP-led four-party alliance will sit today to fix a possible date for holding dialogue with the caretaker government and the Election Commission (EC).

AL won't accept upazila polls first: Hasina

Awami League (AL) President Sheikh Hasina yesterday said her party will never accept elections to upazila parishad ahead of the general election.

HC stay on 2 cases against Hasina upheld

The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday turned down government petitions seeking stay of the effectiveness of High Court (HC) orders suspending earlier the proceedings of Niko and barge-mounted power plant graft cases against former premier Sheikh Hasina.

Tough agitation if Hasina not freed before Eid

Acting Awami League (AL) President Zillur Rahman yesterday said his party would go for a tough movement after Eid-ul-Fitr if party President Sheikh Hasina is not released permanently before the Eid.

Corruption case against Justice Fazlul stayed

The High Court (HC) yesterday stayed for three months proceedings against former caretaker government adviser Justice Fazlul Huq in a graft case filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

Sheikh Selim, Abbas, Babar granted bail

The High Court (HC) yesterday granted ad interim bail for three months to former ministers Sheikh Fazlul Karim Selim and Mirza Abbas and former state minister Lutfozzaman Babar in separate cases filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) on charges of amassing illegal wealth and concealing information from ACC.

Home adviser alarmed at crime spiral

The home ministry yesterday directed the law enforcement agencies to take 'toughest action' against criminals to improve law and order.

2 traffickers get 30 yrs

A Dhaka court yesterday sentenced two members of an international drug smuggling syndicate to 30 years' rigorous imprisonment (RI) each for possessing 23.5kg heroin in November last year.

SC gets new registrar

The government yesterday appointed district and sessions judge of Mymensingh Abu Bakkar Siddique as registrar of the Supreme Court (SC).

19 sued in Rajshahi

A case was recorded yesterday at the Mohonpur Police Station against 19 people on charges of killing 15 villagers during the liberation war.

Credible polls cannot be held compromising with corrupt

Gono Forum President Dr Kamal Hossain yesterday said a free, fair and credible election cannot be held compromising with the corrupt people.

Debapriya new president of Unctad-TDB

Permanent Representative of Bangladesh in Geneva Ambassador Debapriya Bhattacharya has been unanimously elected president of the Trade and Development Board (TDB) of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (Unctad) for one year.

Farmers stage demonstration for fertiliser

Farmers yesterday staged a demonstration at Bagdi Bangeishardi village in Boalmari upazila demanding adequate supply of fertiliser.

Outlaw killed in 'shootout'

A wanted criminal and member of the underground Sarbahara Party was killed in a crossfire between police and his accomplices at Birkutsa Sahapur areas in Bagmara upazila of Rajshahi early yesterday.

US-led troops repelled from Pak border

US-led coalition troops based in Afghanistan tried to cross into a Pakistani tribal area in helicopters but were repelled after warning shots were fired while Pak troops killed at least 40 militants in a restive tribal area near the Afghan border yesterday.

Lanka violence claims 20 more Tamil Tigers

Fresh fighting broke out across Sri Lanka's tense north, leaving 20 Tamil Tiger rebels and one soldier dead, the defence ministry said yesterday.

23 zakat seekers killed in Java stampede

At least 23 people were killed in a stampede in Indonesia yesterday as they crowded an alley to receive zakat (cash handout), which doled out during holy month of Ramadan, police said.

Editorial

Begum Zia's 'no' is welcome

WE are heartened as well as relieved that Begum Khaleda Zia has declined the offer to be chairperson of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party for life. By doing so, she has made a creditable and wise move. As she has pointed out, the party constitution and her respect for democratic norms do not allow her to accept such an offer.

Terror strikes India again

WE condemn the dastardly act of violence perpetrated on innocent people in a series of bomb blast in Delhi on September 13. We condole the death of 25 and sympathise with 100 people who were injured. An indigenous terrorist group calling themselves 'Indian Mujahideen' has claimed responsibility for the attacks. This is the same group that had claimed to have carried out the recent attacks in Ahmedabad and Jaipur.

All sound and fury? Signifying nothing?

A line from William Shakespeare's Macbeth, from Act 5, Scene 5: "Macbeth's plans are falling apart around him."

Body blow to nuclear disarmament

IN contrast to the euphoric headlines proclaiming an end to global "Atomic Apartheid" and India's "Nuclear Dawn," the internal reception to the waiver granted to India, from the Nuclear Suppliers' Group trading rules, was sullen and frosty. When the decision was announced in Vienna, there was no applause.

The afflicted ACC

THE recent release of a large number of accused in corruption cases on bail, as well as stay orders on many other cases, has greatly affected the image of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), which had started its vigorous drive against corruption after the 1/11 changeover. More than 150 high-profile individuals accused in corruption cases filed by the ACC got bail from the High Court (HC) in the last two months, and were released from jail.

Sports

BCB in no-man's land

It is apparent that Bangladesh Cricket Board's (BCB) desire to meet with the ICL-bound cricketers in an effort to stop them from playing in the banned competition would not be fruitful.

Muktijoddha too go down

Heavyweights kept tumbling in the Citycell B. League with Muktijoddha Sangsad crashing to a 3-1 loss to Khulna Abahani at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.

BCB calls back rebel Mahbubul

Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) will send replacements for Mahbubul Karim and Rubel Hossain in the GP-BCB National Cricket Academy team now touring Sri Lanka.

VOX POP: Readers speak out on player exodus

I wholeheartedly support the cricketers' decisions. They have every right to earn the best living they can find. If the BCB cannot match the offer of the ICL, then they should go back to the holes they are in with their tails between their legs. Irrespective of whether these guys sign for the ICL or not, the board should in no way try to place barriers to them plying their trade. I think it is a matter of pride that some of our cricketers are worth $200k in the eyes of the ICL authorities. Why doesn't our board grow a spine and stand up to the bully Lalit Modi (who is essentially dictating things to the ICC), and tell him that they will not ban these cricketers ---- how about that?

Narshingdi home of Farashganj

Narshingdi, a town on the outskirts of capital Dhaka, will host its first professional football match on Friday when Farashganj entertain defending champions Abahani in a second round game of the Citycell B. League.

Aussies' tour on track

Australia's Test squad still plans to depart for India on Sunday despite increased fears over security following deadly bomb attacks in New Delhi on Saturday.

Basabo bag full points

Goals by Biplab and Kabir either side of the break helped Basabo Torun Sangha earn full points in yesterday's Second Division Football league with a 2-1 win over Prantik Krira Chakra.

Share Your Views

The mass resignation of the national cricketers on Sunday created a stir in the country's sporting fraternity. We believe the readers of The Daily Star have their own way of looking into the stunning episode. We are inviting our valued readers to comment on it by emailing us at sports@thedailystar.net. Your comments will be published.

Marquee show returns

Seeking to follow in the footsteps of titleholders Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool set out Tuesday on their Champions League adventures with early French tests in their opening pool games.

Back on the Real track

Real Madrid got their title defence up and running on Sunday, grinding out a 4-3 home victory over newcomers Numancia who shocked the reigning champions by taking the lead twice.

Clouds gather at Milan

AC Milan, with superstars Kaka, Ronaldinho and Andriy Shev-chenko in their line-up, lost 2-0 at Genoa on Sunday to plunge the seven-time European champions into crisis.

Chelsea appeal sending-off

Chelsea confirmed Monday they would appeal against the red card given to captain John Terry during their Premier League victory away to Manchester City last weekend.

Celtic to hold on to Nakamura

Scottish giants Celtic want to persuade Japanese midfielder Shunsuke Nakamura to stay at the club until the end of the season amid signs the 30-year-old may leave in the January transfer window.

Kuszczak signs extension

Manchester United reserve goalkeeper Tomasz Kuszczak has signed a two-year extension to his contract which will keep him at Old Trafford until at least 2012.

WC to be Bilic's swansong

Croatia coach Slaven Bilic said Monday he would leave his post after the 2010 World Cup, stressing he had no regrets about rejecting recent offers from several clubs including West Ham.

Warne bowls for McGain

Shane Warne is backing late-bloomer Bryce McGain as Australia's best leg-spinner despite being set to make his Test cricket debut in India next month at the unlikely age of 36.

NZ A off to flying start

A polished 75 from Peter Fulton and accurate bowling by Mark Gillespie and Jeetan Patel helped New Zealand A to a 129-run win over Australia A in Game One of the triangular series in Hyderabad on Monday.

China alone on top

China established a huge lead at the top of the Paralympics medals table Monday evening, racing to 80 golds -- almost double the haul of its nearest rival on the last night of swimming in Beijing.

Ashley sets Magpies free

Former Newcastle United chairman Freddy Shepherd has told owner Mike Ashley to "stop being a cry-baby" after the billionaire announced plans to sell the Premier League club.

Vengsarkar has faith in the middle-order

Chief selector Dilip Vengsarkar feels the combined failure of the experienced Indian middle-order batting in Sri Lanka was a one-off thing and expects the batsmen to put it firmly behind them and start afresh in the upcoming four-Test series against Australia.

SA A still win series

South Africa A failed to win at the Willowmore Park in Benoni, but the draw on Sunday meant a 1-0 triumph for the hosts in the three-Test series against Sri Lanka A.

Good-win for Sussex

Murray Goodwin struck a six off the last ball as Sussex beat Nottinghamshire by two wickets at Trent Bridge on Sunday to win English county cricket's one-day Pro40 First Division title.

Sussex captain Adams to quit

Chris Adams has announced he is to quit as Sussex captain after 11 years in charge at Hove.

Shane upset with Simmo

Shane Warne says Andrew Symonds showed a lack of respect to the Australian team in Darwin last month, but he has urged the all-rounder not to take the easy option by exiting the international game.

Business

NBR honours 316 taxpayers

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) yesterday awarded 316 taxpayers of six divisions to recognise and appreciate their contribution to the national exchequer as it celebrated the first National Income Tax Day.

Gazipur RMG units go back to production

The Gazipur based garment factory owners, some of whom were affected by the month-long labour unrest in August, are now upbeat on fulfilling this year's export target of their produces, expressing their satisfaction over the government measures to keep law and order situation under control.

100-day job scheme starts for 20 lakh poor

The government yesterday launched a 100-day employment generation scheme for 20 lakh hardcore poor across the country to mitigate their sufferings during lean season.

Oil prices tumble under $93

Oil prices plunged below 93 dollars yesterday, hitting seven-month lows on prospects of weaker energy demand amid a worsening global financial crisis after Lehman Brothers' bankruptcy, analysts said.

SEC fines directors of twin companies

The stock market regulator has fined 10 directors of two listed companies on charges of violating securities laws.

EU proposes new WTO accord on high-tech products

The European Union yesterday proposed updating a World Trade Organisation agreement on high-technology products to include new models and neutralise a complaint from the United States, Japan and Taiwan.

Indian RMG unit in Dhaka EPZ shortly

An Indian company will set up a woven and knit garments industry in Dhaka Export Processing Zone involving US$ 9.776 million or about Tk 67 crore.

Thai exports booming despite political crisis

Thai exports are set to expand by up to a quarter this year, beating the government's target despite the kingdom's relentless political turmoil, commerce minister Chaiya Sasomsap said Monday.

N Korea urges campaign for harvest

North Korea, which is suffering chronic food shortages, called Monday for all-out efforts to reap a good harvest, which it said was the most urgent task facing the communist country.

Singapore jobless rate up 2.3pc

Singapore's jobless rate rose to 2.3 per cent in June, for the second quarter in a row even as total employment growth remained strong in the second quarter, driven by the robust construction sector.

Lanka rates held

Sri Lanka's central bank Monday kept its key interest rate on hold for the 19th straight month as inflation showed signs of easing, a statement said.

Downside of tech: Heavy costs

Technology is like a light bulb. When it is broken, people unplug it, throw it away and plug in another. This is a dictum, and undoubtedly chased by such devices as cellphone sets.

Nepali exodus for overseas work

Tej Man Prajapati's mother was inconsolable as she tearfully blessed her son on the forehead with red powder before he went through security at Nepal's scruffy international airport.

Stocks close almost flat for second day

Dhaka stocks closed almost flat for a second day with prices of majority shares going down.

World shares tumble on Lehman Brothers collapse

European and Asian stock markets plunged between three and five percent Monday on concerns over the beleaguered world economy as Wall Street giant Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy.

China cuts lending rate for the first time in six years

China announced Monday its first cut in lending rates since 2002, the strongest indication yet that it is becoming concerned about the need to spur growth.

Bank of America to buy Merrill Lynch for $50b

Bank of America has agreed to buy investment bank Merrill Lynch for 50 billion dollars in a transaction that creates the world's largest financial services company, the bank announced early Monday.

Global banks pledge $70b to ease credit crunch

A consortium of 10 global commercial and investment banks announced plans Sunday to provide 70 billion dollars to help offset a credit squeeze amid an anticipated collapse of Wall Street giant Lehman Brothers.

China appeals against WTO car parts ruling

China has lodged an appeal at the World Trade Organisation against a ruling on its imported car tariffs which found Beijing's measures to be "inconsistent" with trade rules, a WTO source told AFP Monday.

Business leaders say Britain slipping into recession

Britain's main association of business leaders became the latest group Monday to warn that the country was slipping into a recession, although it said the downturn should be short-lived.

Metropolitan

Show tolerance, shun culture of mud-slinging

Major political parties should show tolerance and shun the culture of mud-slinging in the greater interest of democracy and the nation, Commerce and Education Adviser Hossain Zillur Rahman said yesterday.

A fair with a difference

They perhaps like colours to express their emotions as they cannot communicate with others like normal kids of the society.

Muggers strangle two in city

Muggers robbed and strangled two persons at Mohammadpur and Kafrul in the city within a span of four hours on Sunday night.

Student bodies reject JU decision

Different student organisations yesterday rejected the Jahangirnagar University (JU) decision releasing Prof Sanwar Hossain Sunny of charges of sexual allegation brought against him.

Diarrhoea situation remains unchanged in city

The diarrhoea situation in the capital remains unchanged and shows no sign of improving soon.

Police fail to make any headway

Police could neither recover the Tk 46 lakh looted from the ACI Group officials nor arrest any of the looters although two days passed yesterday.

12 Sunbeams students get highest scores

Twelve students from Sunbeams achieved the highest overall marks in various subjects in the Edexcel's GCE O and A level June examinations to be amongst the top ten worldwide international students, says a press release.

Low over west Bay

The well-marked low in the north west Bay of Bengal and adjoining area continued to persist there and may intensify further, moving in a north westerly direction.

Road accidents kill 8

At least eight people were killed and 37 others injured in separate road accidents in Savar and Sirajganj yesterday.

Ostracising Narail couple by 'fatwa' condemned

Karmojibi Nari (KN) yesterday condemned the incident of ostracising a couple by issuing 'fatwa' at Dumurtala village in Narail, says a press release.

Construction worker shot

Armed extortionists shot at a construction worker in the city yesterday for his refusal to provide them with the details of various construction owners.

Jasas celebrates Khaleda's release in NY

US unit of Jatiyatabadi Samajik Sangskritik Sangstha (Jasas) celebrated the release of BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia and her elder son Tarique Rahman by forming human chain and releasing balloons in New York on Sunday, says ANA, a US-based news agency.

Cases filed against 11 vehicles

The Department of Environment (DoE) filed cases against 11 vehicles, including bus, mini-bus and cab, in the city yesterday for causing noise pollution.

13 hurt as JCD, Shibir clash at Bogra college

At least 13 people were injured in a clash between Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) and Islami Chhatra Shibir at Government Azizul Haque College in the district over filling up of admission forms yesterday.

Int'l Ozone Day today

The International Ozone Day will be observed in the country as elsewhere across the world today with an emphasis on global efforts to protect the ozone layer of the earth.

WFP invites entries

The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) yesterday announced the “WFP Media Awards 2008” for excellence in food security and hunger related reporting in Bangladesh.

Call to observe Proclamation Charter Publication Day nationally

Speakers at a discussion yesterday stressed the need for taking initiatives to observe the Proclamation Charter Publication Day of the Language Movement nationally.

'Extend govt service age for FFs'

The freedom fighters demanded extension of their retirement age in government services up to 65 years from 57.

Seven special trains on Eid

Bangladesh Railway (BR) will introduce seven special trains for homebound passengers in the upcoming Eid.

Implement Vested Properties Return Act

Speakers at a discussion yesterday called for proper implementation of The Vested Properties Return Act 2001 with some amendments to it.

Janajuddha leader sentenced to death

A court here yesterday sentenced a regional leader of an outlawed party to death for killing BNP leader Nur Ali in 2005.

Non-govt teachers demand nationalisation of jobs

Teachers of non-government educational institutions yesterday called on the government to nationalise their jobs.

Rab hands over 4 Vishnu statues of Pala era to Barendra Museum

Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) yesterday handed over four Vishnu black stone statues of Pala era to Barendra Research Museum (BRM) in Rajshahi.

RU Press Club expels 8

Rajshahi University Press Club (RUPC) expelled its eight members for their involvement in anti-club activities, says a press release.

7 auto-rickshaw lifters arrested in Chittagong

Police arrested seven members of a well-organised syndicate of auto-rickshaw lifters from different parts of Chittagong in the last three days.

KN demands neutral probe

Karmojibi Nari (KN) yesterday expressed their astonishment over acquittal of Jahangirnagar University teacher Md Sanowar Hossain from the charge of sexual harassment.

Crab catcher killed by tiger

A crab catcher was killed in an attack by tiger at Kateswar Sora canal in the Sundarbans yesterday.

Heroin seized in Benapole

Members of the Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) in a drive yesterday seized 500 grams of heroin from a house of Sadipur village in Benapole.

Punishment to perpetrator of torture on Shamima demanded

The leaders of local NGOs in Satkhira condemned the torture on Shamima Khatun, a UN award winner, by her husband and demanded exemplary punishment to the perpetrator of torture.

30 injured as passengers jump from train out of panic

Two trains escaped a head-on collision but left some 30 passengers injured out of panic jumping at Raninagar railway station yesterday.

Make Sept 18, 22 programmes a success: CPB

Dhaka Committee of the Communist Party of Bangladesh (CPB) has urged its leaders and activists to make the party programmes of September 18 and 22 a success to realise the demands of readymade garment (RMG) workers, says a press release.

Shoe trader stabbed, robbed of Tk 20,000

Muggers stabbed a shoe trader at Gulistan in the city last night and made off with Tk 20,000 from him.

Road transport owners-workers' confce Sept 21

The national convention of Bangladesh Road Transport Owners-Workers Oikya Parishad, a platform of owners and workers of road transport sector, will be held on September 21.

National

Food crisis grips Sidr-hit Southkhali

Worst hit by the Sidr on November 15 last year, Southkhali union under Sharankhola upazila of Bagerhat district now sees severe food crisis and many people are reportedly suffering from various diseases resulting from starvation and semi-starvation.

15 deer in Jamuna Eco Park die of heart attack!

Three more deer in Jamuna Eco Park in Sirajganj died on Saturday due to alleged carelessness of park authorities.

Take action against syndicates to check price spiral

Speakers at a discussion meeting here yesterday expressed deep concern over price spiral of essentials and sale of stale and adulterated food during Ramadan.

Setback in BIWTC service on Dhaka-Khulna route

Rocket steamer service of Bangladesh Water Transport Corporation (BIWTC) on Dhaka-Khulna route has become irregular as vessels often go out of order on the way while a few are docked for repair.

Jute workers' self-immolation bid foiled in Khulna

Police yesterday foiled earlier announced 'self-immolation programme' of Jute Mill Workers' Development Committee.

Satkhira Jamaat leader sued for 'corruption'

Jamaat leader Maulana Abdul Gaffar, also chairman of Kushkhali Union Parishad (UP), was sued by a woman member yesterday for alleged corruption including toll collection and bribery.

Panama ship salvaged after 2 weeks

Panama flag bearer MV Vinashin Iron, which ran aground on September 2 in a shoal near Hiron Point, was refloated yesterday.

Arrest of 2 BNP men demanded in Rajshahi

Residents and traders at Gourhanga in Rajshahi city at a press conference held at a local restaurant yesterday demanded arrest of two BNP men who are involved in killing, toll collection, smuggling and land grabbing for a long time.

International

Govt under fire as India probes Delhi blasts

Indian police planned to release sketches yesterday of suspects behind New Delhi bombings that left more than 20 dead, as criticism grew over the lack of a coherent national counter-terrorism policy.

Sonia holds meeting on internal security

Congress President Sonia Gandhi yesterday reviewed the country's internal security situation with senior party leaders but significantly Home Minister Shivraj Patil, who is under attack from various quarters over the handling of terrorism, was conspicuous by his absence.

Zimbabwe rivals sign power-sharing deal

President Robert Mugabe and opposition leaders signed a deal yesterday under which Zimbabwe's president of nearly three decades will cede some power, and both sides expressed hope for the country's future.

Iran still refusing to suspend uranium enrichment: IAEA

Iran is continuing to defy UN demands that it suspend uranium enrichment, the UN atomic watchdog said yesterday.

Gates foresees shrinking US combat role in Iraq

Defence Secretary Robert Gates said yesterday that although no additional US combat brigades are to withdraw from Iraq this year, he expects the US combat role to keep shrinking.

2,000 brought to safety in Texas after Ike

As teams continued the biggest search and rescue operation in Texas history, a new phase of the disaster wrought by Hurricane Ike was only beginning as thousands of people faced long stays in crowded shelters because their homes were damaged or destroyed.

Thai ruling party struggles to agree on new premier

Thailand's ruling party struggled to agree on a new prime minister yesterday as one key faction walked out of talks, adding to the political uncertainty as the government faces down weeks of protests.

Opposition-led rule in Malaysia looks likely

Less than a year ago, Malaysians would have sniggered at any suggestion that former Deputy Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim, crushed by a sodomy charge in 1998, could make a political comeback.

Olmert warns of high price for delaying ME peace

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, who could step down later this week, warned yesterday against delaying a peace deal with the Palestinians.

Nato promises deeper ties with Georgia

Nato's chief promised deeper ties with Georgia on Monday as Brussels pledged half a billion euros to help the Western ally rebuild following last month's devastating conflict with Russia.

Morales struggles to control Bolivia amid violence

President Evo Morales struggled to assert control over a badly fractured Bolivia on Sunday as protesters set fire to a town hall and blockaded highways in opposition-controlled provinces, provoking gasoline and food shortages.

India now a big world player thanks to nuclear nod

The decision by nuclear supplier nations to end a decades-old ban on civilian nuclear trade with India has vaulted it into the ranks of the world's major global political powers, a key minister says.

Republicans accuse Obama of 'ageism'

Republicans Sunday accused Barack Obama's camp of stooping to "ageism" against John McCain, hitting back after Democrats complained their White House challenger had been smeared by "disgusting lies."

EU leaves Zimbabwe sanctions in place

EU foreign ministers yesterday left sanctions in place against Zimbabwe, despite a new power-sharing deal, saying they wanted to see democratic improvements before resuming economic aid.

Zardari to talk al-Qaeda conflict in Britain

Pakistan's new president, Asif Ali Zardari, will discuss the conflict with Taliban and al-Qaeda militants in the northern tribal areas with British leaders this week, officials said Sunday.

Australian Muslim cleric, 5 others convicted on terrorism charges

A jury Monday convicted a Muslim cleric and five of his followers of forming a terrorist group in Australia that allegedly considered assassinating the prime minister and attacking major sporting events.

EU greenlights Georgia observers as criticism of mission mounts

The European Union gave the green light Monday for a 200-strong observer mission for Georgia, amid rising criticism that they will not be able to deploy to rebel Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

Malaysian govt hit by furore over crackdown

Malaysia's government was hit with a storm of protest yesterday over a series of arrests under tough security laws, a move the opposition said was aimed at preventing it from seizing power.

Four dead after Typhoon Sinlaku pounds Taiwan

Four people have been confirmed dead and 11 others are missing after Typhoon Sinlaku pounded Taiwan with fierce winds and torrential rain, rescuers said yesterday.

Singapore frees five alleged extremists

Singapore said yesterday five alleged Singaporean members of the Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) militant network have been released.

Arts & Entertainment

Straight from the heart: Joya Ahsan

The Daily Star had the good fortune of interviewing model turned TV actress Joya Ahsan recently. She shared her views on her favourite directors and her plans for the Eid. The readers will be happy to know that they might expect to watch their favourite actress on TV this Eid. Below are excerpts from the conversation.

Nrityanchal invited to ITI World Congress in Madrid

Nrityanchal, one of the leading dance organisations of the country, has been invited to the 32nd International Theatre Institute (ITI) World Congress, which is going to be held in Madrid, Spain from September 22 to 28, says a press release.

“The Women”: A rather tame no man's land

Since the days of Aristophanes, it's been comedy gold to watch women plotting and scheming out of sight of their menfolk. And yet "The Women," a remake of George Cukor's sparkling 1939 all-girl comedy set in New York City, falls flat. Given its cast -- which includes Meg Ryan, Annette Bening, Bette Midler, Debra Messing and Jada Pinkette Smith -- this is nothing short of amazing. Where did the laughs go?

More accolades for “Ironeaters”

The film "Ironeaters" (Bangla title Lohakhor), directed by Berlin-based Bangladesh filmmaker Shaheen Dill-Riaz has won two more first prizes at "Achtung Berlin - New Berlin Film Award Festival 2008" and "Hachenburger Filmfest 2008", says a press release. The values of the prizes are respectively 9000 Euros for post-production facilities for the next film and 1000 Euros of cash money. With these, the film has won first prizes six times at different international competitions of documentary films.

“Mayur Bahan” on Channel 1 tonight

TV serial Mayur Bahan will be aired tonight on Channel 1 at 8:15 pm. Written by Pantha Shahriar, the serial is directed by Rulin Rahman. The serial is aired every Monday and Tuesday.

“Ak-e Shunyo Dosh” on Ekushey TV

Drama serial Ak-e Shunnyo Dosh will be aired tonight on Ekushey TV at 8:15 pm. Written by Ishaq Khan and directed by Kaisar Ahmed, the serial follows the life of an imbecile named Lebu.

Jennifer Lopez competes in and completes triathlon

Jennifer Lopez can add athlete to her overflowing resume. The actress/singer/fashion designer/mother completed the Nautica Malibu Triathlon in a swift 2 hours, usmagazine.com reports. The 39-year-old actress pumped her arms in the air and smiled broadly as she hurried across the finish line.

OP-ED

Ending with a whimper

AFTER 20 months of arduous journey along a tricky path, the anti-corruption drive of the caretaker government seems to have run into serious trouble. The pain the CTG went through and the time and energy they expended in catching the big fry and bringing them to trial have apparently failed to yield the desired result. The big fry are escaping from the net, one after another, before the catchers could even know how and when the knots came loose.

Citizens' charter

THE initiative for a citizens' charter is one of the commendable initiatives of the present government. A citizens' charter, indeed, is the expression of understanding between citizens and the provider of a public service with respect to the quantity and quality of service. It reflects the expectation of the clients and the commitment of the providers.

Drawing even

WITH 53 days until Election Day, John McCain has pulled even with Barack Obama in the latest Newsweek poll. Buoyed by the Republican convention and overwhelming partisan enthusiasm for his choice of Sarah Palin as his running mate, McCain is now tied with Obama among registered voters nationwide, 46% to 46%.

Never rob a bank without the right condiment

A man woke up to find that an intruder had broken into his house and was rubbing seasoning into his body. The food powder was "Pappy's Seasoning," a popular mixture of dried spices, herbs and salt, said to bring out the flavor in a variety of meats. ("Human" was not listed among recommendations on the package.)


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