The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Monday, September 22, 2014


News of: Wednesday, 24th of September, 2008

Front Page

BNP flip-flops on registration

Almost like an intriguing soap opera, BNP kept everybody in suspense last night regarding whether it will get registered with the Election Commission (EC) under the new electoral provisions, following an unscheduled meeting with the commission in the afternoon.

Special A/C train service for Eid holidaymakers

Bangladesh Railway (east zone) will arrange a special air-conditioned train service 'Eid Special' for three days from September 28 on Dhaka-Chittagong route to help the homebound holidaymakers ahead of Eid-ul-Fitr.

Digitisation must for land reforms

A high-powered government taskforce is going to recommend digitisation of the country's entire land records and turning district administration offices into monitoring bodies from its present role of service provider to ensure transparency and reduce corruption.

Bangladesh now No 10

There has been no significant success in the unprecedented anti-corruption drive in the last 19 months in Bangladesh, which has ranked 10th among the most corrupt countries this year.

Education held back by political tangles

Development in education sector remains stagnant despite formation of seven education commissions and committees since independence and three others during the Pakistan regime, as none of their reports or recommendations has been implemented due to political tangles.

Police beset with limitations: IGP

Inspector General of Police (IGP) Nur Mohammad yesterday said the police department is beset with limitations and if police serve people up to their expectations, people will raise their voice to remove the limitations.

City mayors against holding JS, upazila polls within a week

Mayors of five city corporations yesterday said holding of parliamentary elections and upazila polls within a short span of time would hamper both.

AL-led grand alliance meets today after 20 months

After a pause of about 20 months, Awami League (AL)-led grand electoral alliance is about to be resurrected again, as its key leaders are scheduled to meet for iftar today, ahead of the parliamentary election scheduled for December 18.

ACC has no beef with TI perception

The Anti-corruption Commission (ACC) is rather okay with Transparency International's (TI) perception that no significant development has been made in curbing corruption in Bangladesh over the last year, considering that graft in the country has not increased.

Khaleda for release of all political leaders before Eid

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia yesterday demanded release of all detained political leaders before the Eid to create a congenial atmosphere for elections.

Results of 27th BCS exams published

The Public Service Commission (PSC) published the results of the 27th Bangladesh Civil Service (BCS) examinations yesterday, recommending 3,239 candidates for appointment at cadre posts.

Second Dhaka-Ctg highway in limbo

The second Dhaka-Chittagong highway project is gathering dust for over a year after the Roads and Highways Department (RHD) failed to find a suitable firm for the construction in July last year.

Public hearing from today on proposed 65pc gas price hike

Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) will hold public hearings from today on proposed hike in gas prices ranging up to 65 percent.

Govt considering promulgation of police ordinance

The government is considering promulgation of Bangladesh Police Ordinance 2007, Home Adviser MA Matin yesterday said.

BDR shops to be shut down

Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) is set to close its fair price outlets across the country from September 29 after running those for over one and a half years due to low volume of sale.

Pintu denied bail, arrest warrant issued against Obaidul Karim

A Dhaka court yesterday rejected a bail petition of detained former BNP lawmaker Nasiruddin Ahmed Pintu in connection with the killing of his employee Fakaruddin alias Sohel in April 2004.

AKM Mosharraf, ex-MP Milon freed on bail

Former state minister for energy AKM Mosharraf Hossain and former BNP lawmaker AKM Fazlul Huq Milon were released from prison on bail yesterday.

Jam worsens near New Market as Eid nears

With Eid shopping binge gathering momentum, the capital's Gausia, New Market and New Elephant Road areas witness increasing traffic jams.

Hasina's bail petitions sent back by HC

A vacation bench of the High Court (HC) yesterday sent back two bail petitions filed on behalf of Awami League President Sheikh Hasina in the Niko and barge-mount power plant corruption cases filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

CA attends Bush reception

Chief Adviser (CA) Fakhruddin Ahmed attended a reception hosted by US President George W Bush Monday evening

Saifur sceptic about dialogue

Former finance minister and BNP standing committee member M Saifur Rahman yesterday said the proposed dialogue between Khaleda Zia and Sheikh Hasina might bring respite among the people, but he felt it would not produce any tangible results.

Chinese brand items seized in Ctg, Sylhet

A mobile court and a surveillance team of Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution (BSTI) yesterday seized Chinese brand milk formulas from several shops in Chittagong and Sylhet.

Banya finally back home

Banya, the surviving one of the conjoined twins separated in August, is going home for the first time since the surgery that has changed her life, and for the better.

60 'militants' killed in Pakistan

Security forces backed by helicopter gunships and artillery killed more than 60 insurgents in northwest Pakistan in offensives aimed at denying al-Qaeda and Taliban militants safe havens, officials said yesterday.

Sri Lanka in talks with Norway peace brokers

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse held talks with Norwegian peace facilitators, the first since Colombo pulled out of a tattered truce in January while 26 more Tamil Tigers were killed in ground fighting across Lanka's north, his office said yesterday.

Bush 'confident' in quick US bailout

President George W Bush said yesterday he had reassured worried world leaders at the UN General Assembly he was "confident" the US Congress would quickly act to rescue the crisis-hit US economy.

GP CEO resigns

Anders Jensen, chief executive officer of Grameenphone, resigned from the company on Monday, ahead of the scheduled end of his tenure in October 2010.

Editorial

Towards a new era for people's right to know

We welcome the council of advisers' giving final approval to the Right to Information Ordinance 2008 and commend the government for this action. Now, we believe, it is important that as soon as the ordinance is promulgated through presidential assent, instructions must go out to all ministries, directorates, departments, corporations and outlying offices for getting ready and set to provide information to the public on demand. To this end, government offices must be prepared, equipped and trained to cater to demands for information that are bound to arise in consequence of the law. No gaps should be allowed to develop around the links to the chain of information. It is also crucially important that a level of receptivity to requests for information be built into the system by undertaking motivational activities aimed at changing the mindset of government functionaries.

Police reform is too important to brook delay

The admission of the IGP that the police is a 'weak force' is only an authentic statement of fact. Come as the comments do, from the chief of a force that has as its major responsibility the maintenance of law and order and internal security, the frustration is understandable and justified. It underscores the need to effect police reform urgently.

The RPO may not be perfect, and yet . . .

THERE are a good number of reasons why the Representation of People Ordinance can turn out to be a good thing after all. And that is a point the Bangladesh Nationalist Party and its allies would do well to take note of. No, we are not suggesting that everything that has come within the ambit of the RPO promises the moon for us. It does not.

Between a rock and a hard place

THE devastating attack on the Marriott hotel in Islamabad is a poignant reminder of the serious challenge the Pakistan government faces in the war on terror. The challenge is certainly staggering, and more complicated than merely viewing it as the consequence of the government's failure to go all-out against the terrorists. Neither can it be simplified by looking at the problem through the prism of "you are either with us or against us."

The battle of Bolivia

WHEN Evo Morales became president of Bolivia in January 2006, many people in Latin America held their breath. Half the nation feared what would come if Morales made good on his promise to re-engineer the impoverished Andean nation into a socialist utopia. The other half feared what would happen if he failed. Two and a half years on, even the darkest predictions are looking optimistic and not just for Bolivia.

Sports

Mashrafe rejected ICL offer

The embargo continued on captain Mohammad Ashraful but his deputy Mashrafe Bin Mortaza made up for his absence at least for the day at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur yesterday.

Enamul lifts visitors

Striker Enamul Haque returned to goals with a brace to inspire Farashganj's first victory in the Citycell B. League yesterday.

Chappell joins Aussies

Ricky Ponting's Australia are looking for inside knowledge from former India coach Greg Chappell to help the tourists win the upcoming four-Test series on Indian soil.

A new era: Lee

Paceman Brett Lee said on Tuesday ahead of the upcoming Test series that Australia would not be intimidated in cricket-mad India despite the lack of experience in the touring squad.

India to brave bombs

India will play a Test and a one-day international in Rawalpindi on their tour of Pakistan early next year despite the latest bombing in adjoining Islamabad, official said Tuesday.

Curtains for Gough

Former England fast bowler Darren Gough's first-class cricket career came to an end Monday after he was left out of the Yorkshire squad for their final County Cham -pionship match of the season.

Old Trafford to be new

Lancashire County Cricket Club announced plans Monday for a major redevelopment of their Old Trafford home which they hope will see it once again become a regular Ashes venue.

WC mascot unveiled

The official mascot of the 2010 World Cup was unveiled on Monday in Johannesburg - a green-haired leopard named Zakumi - FIFA announced at a television gala broadcast nationwide.

Derby day for Atletico

A fierce Madrid derby is the highlight of the midweek fixtures in the Spanish first division as the league's top-scorers Atletico Madrid travel to unbeaten neighbours Getafe on Wednesday.

Borriello the main man

With all the high profile signings AC Milan made in the summer in a bid to win a first Serie A title since 2004, Marco Borriello's return to the club from Genoa created barely a ripple.

Kahn defends Rensing

Former Germany captain Oliver Kahn on Tuesday defended Bayern Munich's under-fire goalkeeper Michael Rensing who made several errors in their shock 5-2 home defeat against Werder Bremen last weekend.

Academy lose by four wickets

Sri Lanka Development XI made it 1-1 after they beat touring GP-BCB National Cricket Academy by four wickets in the second one-day match at the SSC ground yesterday.

Olympic Day Run Nov 22

The Bangladesh Olympic Association (BOA) will organise the Olympic Day Run on November 22 this year.

Skipper role for Yuvraj

Test discard Yuvraj Singh gets a chance to return to the Indian team after being picked on Tuesday to lead the hosts in a warm-up match for the touring Australians.

T&T ride on Arman brace

Early goals by Arman helped T&T Club of Motijheel defeat Prantik KC 2-0 in yesterday's lone Second Division Football League match at the Birshreshtha Shaheed Mostafa Stadium in Kamalapur.

Akhtar to play regional T20

The Pakistan Cricket Board Tuesday said controversial fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar, if fit, would play in the national Twenty20 championship starting from October 4.

'Spin should turn series'

Former off-spinner Ashley Mallett has cautioned Australia against relying too much on their pace attack when they take on India, saying the novice spin duo of Bryce McGain and Jason Krejza will have an important role to play in the four-Test series.

ICL hints at legal action

The Indian Cricket League (ICL) might take legal action against the International Cricket Council (ICC) if the world body does not take up its application seeking 'official status' by next week.

Chinese stars crash out

Olympic semifinalist Li Na and compatriot Peng Shuai crashed out of the China Open in the first round on Tuesday, on a disastrous day for the host nation.

Ronaldo starts full training

Former AC Milan and Real Madrid star Ronaldo, one of Brazil's most decorated footballers, was Tuesday back in full training seven months on from a knee injury which led him to leave Italy.

Guti to miss Zenit match

Real Madrid midfielder Guti will miss next week's Champions League match at Zenit St Petersburg after suffering a leg injury at the weekend.

Hull sign Stelios

Stelios Giannakopoulos joined Premier League new boys Hull City on a permanent contract Monday.

Star duo sidelined

Chelsea's Portugal international pair of Ricardo Carvalho and Deco are both set to miss matches for the London club through injury it was announced Monday.

No replay for Watford

Officials at the Football League announced Monday there would be no replay of the English second-tier Championship match between Watford and Reading which featured a controversial goal that never was.

Zico set for Bunyodkor

Uzbekistan's league leaders Bunyodkor are expecting Brazilian former football great Zico to take over the side very soon, the club press service announced Tuesday.

Business

BB relaxes forex transaction rules

The central bank has liberalised foreign exchange transaction rules to some extent for exporters, foreign investors and other foreign currency users in the context of comfortable foreign currency reserve condition.

GP boss steps down

Anders Jensen, chief executive officer of Grameenphone, resigned from the company on Monday.

SME refinancing trebles

Loans under the Bangladesh Bank's SME refinance scheme have increased more than threefold to about Tk 100 crore in the April-June quarter from the previous quarter, according to the central bank officials.

Bernanke, Paulson urge swift action on US bailout

US Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson urged Congress yesterday to swiftly pass a 700-billion-dollar financial bailout or put the economy at risk.

United Airways to fly beyond border today

United Airways Bangladesh Ltd, a private airline founded by non-resident Bangladeshis, will launch its maiden international passenger flight today.

Rangpur Dairy sells milk without BSTI nod

Rangpur Dairy & Food Products Ltd is marketing its pasteurised fresh milk --RD Milk-- across the country without the approval of Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution (BSTI).

Square Pharma distributes gifts to shareholders

Dhaka Stock Exchange has sought explanation from Square Pharmaceuticals as to why the company distributed gift items to the shareholders at its annual general meeting in violation of securities rules.

Singapore unlikely to meet tourism target

Singapore -- due to host tens of thousands of foreign visitors for its first Formula One Grand Prix this weekend -- said Tuesday it is unlikely to meet its annual target for tourist arrivals.

Biz Letters

Is customer service an art?


Few days back, I went to a jewelry shop in Singapore to buy a gift for my friend. As I entered to the shop I was greeted like a guest by one sales person with her smile. I was amazed to experience the customer comfort a sales person can ensure to arrive at a right buying decision. She enquired thoroughly to understand what would suit my friend best. Then one very important question comes to my mind, 'Is customer service an art?

Insurers short on skills

Professional manpower is scarce in the country's growing insurance industry when over 60 companies have sprung up in the private sector in a span of 22 years.

Fast-tracking Saarc trade

The challenge for customs nowadays is to offer the best possible service to traders and citizens in a planet characterised by economic globalisation, by rapidly increasing trade flows and by worldwide security concerns. Despite having enormous potential, South Asia is in an economically disadvantageous position, compared to other regional blocs. This is further aggravated by related bottlenecks that exist within the public administration, particularly the customs. Lack of adequate infrastructure at ports, complex rules and regulations concerning international trade, ambiguities related to customs valuation and tariff classification, pervasiveness of corruption among a section of customs personnel, inefficiency of government bureaucracy, and lack of cooperation among the various government agencies pose serious threat to the region's external sector performance. Raising effectiveness of trade facilitation measures within the Saarc region is crucial to supporting global integration of Saarc countries and promote their trade and commerce. Such an endeavour will largely depend on adopting and implementing a number of measures including the following. The Saarc Secretariat could play a key role in it.

Dhaka shares rise on banks

Dhaka stocks gained yesterday, powered mainly by bank shares.

Dollar rises before govt testimonies on US bailout plan

The dollar rose against the euro and yen on Tuesday as traders awaited more details on a US government plan to buy mortgage-related assets at the root of a global financial crisis, dealers said.

India eases external borrowing rules

With Indian banks likely to face a cash crunch for lending, the government has relaxed the norms for external commercial borrowings (ECB) for domestic companies engaged in infrastructure sectors such as power, roads, airport and ports.

HK investors may sue sellers of Lehman-backed bonds

Hong Kong investors who bought complex financial products backed by collapsed US investment bank Lehman Brothers were considering suing the institutions who sold them, a lawmaker said Tuesday.

SKorea offers liquidity to credit-strapped firms

South Korea will offer local banks and financial firms a credit lifeline if necessary in the wake of the global financial turmoil, a minister said Tuesday.

Singapore's GIC reports 7.8pc annual return

The normally secretive Government of Singapore Investment Corp, which has bailed out banks hit by the global financial crisis, said Tuesday its nominal annual rate of return over the past 20 years was 7.8 percent in US dollar terms.

Metropolitan

Close monitoring of ADB activities stressed

Speakers at a consultation yesterday agreed to monitor closely the policies, projects and programmes of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in Bangladesh.

'Impose ban on Chhatra Mukti activities at DU'

Bangladesh Chhatra Moitri (BCM), a left-leaning student organisation, yesterday staged a demonstration demanding an immediate ban on the activities of Chhatra Mukti on the Dhaka University (DU) campus.

CA reaffirms support for development of Africa

Chief Adviser Fakhruddin Ahmed on Monday reiterated the Bangladesh's firm commitment to further strengthening its support and cooperation for the development of Africa.

Take stern action against culprits

Rights activists yesterday demanded stern action against those who attacked indigenous people and grabbed their lands at Tarash in Sirajganj on September 15.

Formulate policy to ensure gender sensitivity in TV, radio ads

Speakers at a view exchange meeting yesterday urged the government to formulate a policy for advertisements to ensure gender sensitivity in the TV and radio commercials.

Hasina's lawyers submit bail bond

Lawyers of former prime minister and Awami League President Sheikh Hasina submitted a bail bond in Tk 2.99 crore extortion case filed by businessman Azam J Chowdhury.

Increase polling centres for rapid vote count

Former chief election commissioner (CEC) Justice Abdur Rouf yesterday said the number of polling centres in the next parliamentary elections should be increased in order to speedily and smoothly count the votes cast in the elections.

5 killed in road accidents

Five people were killed and 27 others injured in separate road accidents in Sylhet, Dinajpur, Gaibandha and Netrakona yesterday.

Govt set to provide toll-free number for child helpline

Special Assistant to Chief Adviser Brig Gen (retd) Abdul Malek at a national workshop yesterday assured that the government would provide a special toll-free number for child helpline.

One to die, 4 get life for murder in Munshiganj

A Dhaka court yesterday sentenced a man to death and four others to life in jail for killing their neighbour Anisur Rahman Bepari of Munshiganj in September 2005.

Lifting of state of emergency demanded

Leaders and activists of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) staged a demonstration on the Dhaka University (DU) campus yesterday demanding immediate lifting of the state of emergency.

Business Reporters' Network formed in Jessore

The Business Reporters' Network (BRN) was formed in Jessore yesterday to help the media and the enterprises understand business issues better.

Jamaat, IOJ attitudes towards EC condemned

The War Crimes Facts Finding Committee (WCFFC) condemned the attitude of Jamaat-e-Islami and Islami Oikya Jote (IOJ) with the Election Commission (EC) regarding the reform proposals.

FEMA delegates meet CEC

A five-member delegation of FEMA met with the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) at his office yesterday, says a press release.

Mystery unravels as mother comes round

The mystery over the death of three-year-old Alif and serious illness of his mother Shaila Sharmin Shashi started to unravel as Shashi regained her consciousness yesterday.

Sarojini Basu Award for Prof Anisuzzaman

Kolkata University (KU) conferred honorary 'Sarojini Basu Award' on Prof Emeritus of Dhaka University Dr Anisuzzaman for his outstanding contribution to the research of Bangla language and literature, says a press release.

Apsora not first frozen embryo baby?

The Harvest Infertility Care Limited yesterday claimed that the first baby from frozen embryo was born in the country 10 months ago and the birth of Apsora on Friday was not the first incident of this kind.

ACC sues WDB superintendent engineer

The Anti-Corruption Commission yesterday filed a case against a superintendent engineer of Water Development Board (WDB) on charge of amassing illegal wealth and concealing wealth information.

Govt Girls' High School becomes champion in Rajshahi

Government Girls' High School in Rajshahi has emerged champion in the Rajshahi City Inter-School Debate Competition defeating Rajshahi Govt Laboratory High School.

One kg heroin seized

Department of Narcotics Control officials arrested a drug smuggler with one kilogram of heroin from Saidpur village in Benapole yesterday.

50 injured as RMG workers clash in city

At least 50 readymade garment (RMG) workers were injured during separate clashes with the policemen in Uttara and Uttarkhan areas in the city yesterday.

Memorial meet on 13 military officers: Probe demanded

Speakers at a memorial meeting yesterday demanded investigation into what they called the "killing" of 13 military officers who were tried by court-martial and hanged on charges of involvement in the assassination of president Ziaur Rahman.

DCC project workers begin sit-in for salary

Three hundred employees of Slum Development Project of Dhaka City Corporation (DCC) started an indefinite sit-in programme along with their children at Nagar Bhaban premises yesterday demanding their arrear salaries of 15 months.

48,560 Bangladeshis to perform hajj this year

Some 48,560 Bangladeshis are expected to perform hajj this year, both under government and private managements.

Special A/C train on Eid

Bangladesh Railway (east zone) will arrange a special air-conditioned train service 'Eid Special' for three days from September 28 on Dhaka-Chittagong route to help the homebound holidaymakers ahead of Eid-ul-Fitr.

Physiotherapy students, teachers threaten agitation

The Physiotherapy Students-Teachers-Professionals' Coordination Council yesterday announced to go for tougher agitations from October 13 if their demand is not met by this time.

Two shot in city

Four people were injured as criminals opened fire in two separate incidents in the city yesterday evening.

Govt firm to ensure more transparency in hajj management

Religious Affairs Adviser AF Hassan Ariff yesterday said the government is determined for bringing about necessary reforms to ensure more transparency and accountability in the hajj management process.

Valuables worth Tk 7 lakh mugged in Bogra

Armed muggers took away valuables worth Tk 7 lakh from the passengers of a microbus, a three-wheeler CNG and a bicycle rider at Balgharia area under Kahalu upazila in Bogra on Monday night.

British Council closed from Sept 28

The British Council offices, resources centre and teaching centres in Dhaka, Chittagong and Sylhet will be closed from September 28 to October 3 for Shab-e-Qadr and Eid-ul-Fitr, says a press release.

Top criminal Munna jailed for 12 yrs in Ctg

Dulaluddin Munna, a top criminal of Fatikchhari, was yesterday sentenced to 12 years in prison for illegal possession of arms and ammunition.

Woman found dead in N'ganj

Police recovered a body of a woman from the old court area of the town yesterday.

Buet admission test on Nov 20

The admission test for the first year at Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet) under academic session 2008-09 will be held on November 20.

Appeal for help

Md Iftekhar Mahmud, a student of class ten at Nator Sugar Mills High School, has been suffering from blood cancer, says a press release.

National

Magura BNP men scuffle in presence of central leaders

District BNP leaders in Magura came under fire of grass-roots leaders and activists during a view exchanging meeting yesterday in presence of some central BNP leaders including its vice-chairman and former minister (Ziaur Rahman cabinet) Sarwari Rahman.

C'nawabganj BNP poura committee dissolved

A new convening committee of Chapainawabganj pourasava unit of BNP has been formed after dissolution of the poura BNP committee and 'removal' of a few leaders including its general secretary Mosidul Haque Masud.

Aman turning yellowish in Rangpur

Aman plants in many areas of Rangpur are turning yellowish and withering away, shattering farmers' hopes.

Stop politicisation of Satkhira Red Crescent by BNP-Jamaat

Life members of Satkhira Red Crescent Society yesterday held a meeting and submitted a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner protesting a plan by its local officials to convene a general meeting of the society to form a 'pocket committee' with BNP-Jamaat men.

Amin Jute Mills workers call off work abstention

The agitating workers of state-owned Amin Jute Mills postponed their scheduled work abstention programme yesterday following an assurance by the mill management to meet their demands.

1 killed, 45 hurt in Netrakona clashes

One person was killed and 45 others were injured in a five-hour-long clash at Bogajan village under Kalmakanda upazila in the district on Monday night.

Barisal Jubo Dal factions hold separate iftar parties today

Tension has been created among the activists of Barisal Jubo Dal as two factions of city Jubo Dal have arranged separate iftar parties on the same day.

3 carriers hurt as bombs go off in Kushtia

Three criminals were injured as bombs went off at Jamalpur village in Daulatpur upazila Monday night.

Spurious drink factory detected, four held

A mobile court yesterday unearthed a spurious tea and drink manufacturing factory at Palashpur in the city and arrested four people in this connection.

RU admission test from Nov 16

Rajshahi University (RU) admission tests will begin on November 16 and will continue till November 28, university sources said.

RCC fund for poverty alleviation

The Rajshahi City Corporation (RCC) authorities have formed a fund titled, 'Poverty Alleviation Fund' for reducing poverty in the city corporation area.

Letters

Return to democracy

After the Awami League president Sheikh Hasina was set free on bail, the release of BNP chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia has strengthened and encouraged the mass people of the country to stick to their faith that the present caretaker government is on the right track to holding the next general parliamentary election in time.

Sexual harassment by teachers

I am once more prompted to write this letter (refer to my letter of September 5, 2008 on the same subject) after reading the news item captioned “Sexual Harassment at JU: Make probe report public”, published in your daily on September 17, 2008. This also has got to do with Ms. Nasrin Pervin's letter published on September 12, 2008 on sexual harassment in educational institutions. What is remarkable about the letter is, she specifically cited the name of a department and claimed that one of her close friends was the victim of her teacher's constant insistence to get into such a relationship. Thus the authenticity of her narrative cannot be disregarded.

BDR shops

Last year, we came to know that to provide vegetable etc at reasonable prices some vegetable markets at various locations of Dhaka city would be opened and these would be managed by the BDR. The vegetable prices will be fair, as vegetables producers will directly sell their products from these markets.

Russia repeats the mistake!

At its peak, the Soviet Union was a formidable military power, but it was a Third World nation with missiles. The Soviet economy was simply not working. Without competition, most state-owned factories were producing shoddy products which no one wanted. Soviet agriculture was in a terrible state. Soviet Republic of Ukraine was once the bread-basket of Europe before collectivisation. But under the Soviet rule, it became a net importer.

Looking back to 1/11

1/11 had rescued the nation from a 'civil war' and a catastrophe, at a juncture when time was rapidly running out at the irresponsible stance of both the major political parties of our country.

Marching ahead

Our society is intertwined like other developing countries with progressive ideas for ensuring peace, progress and prosperity.

To tell the truth…

Almost all of us learnt in school --“Always tell the truth”. Since then, the more we can grasp the meaning of the truth, the more we comprehend the risks involved in telling the truth at the wrong time and wrong place! I browsed the encyclopaedia to know why telling truth doesn't do justice to us.

Traffic jam in Gulshan

The posh residential area Gulshan has become a busy commercial hub of the city, it has gradually lost its residential character. As a result, a huge number of multinational and national corporate houses set up their multistoried offices in Gulshan. Most of the offices are on the Gulshan Avenue and nearly every one of them has no parking space. Let me tell you the story, starting from the shooting club point, in front of the club a bank has its head office without any parking space and some steps ahead a mobile company recently started their new corporate office and that creates chaotic traffic jam as lots of cars are parked on the street, none of the law enforcers are saying anything to them. Now come to Gulshan-1 intersection where a shopping mall is situated and cars are parked in front of the mall. These generate huge traffic jam as the left side of the intersection goes to the car owners. The on-duty policemen are helpless and cannot go against the lawbreakers as they are more powerful.

Ban smoking

The government should ban smoking completely because it causes serious health problem. It not only harms smokers but non-smokers are also affected by it. Though the govt. earns hefty revenue from the tobacco industry it should ban marketing of tobacco & related products. Non-smokers should not suffer for the fancy of smoking cigarettes by others.

Student leaders or trouble makers?

Being students of Dhaka University, we are subjected to undemocratic, asocial and uncivilised conducts by the so called student leaders, either from the JCD or the BCL. They try to dominate and force the general students into subjugation, which of course is not acceptable.

Dhaka Warriors

In one way, I do feel that they are defectors and, on the other hand, I feel good that at least some new cricketers will get the opportunity to play for the national team. The BCB should learn how other countries deal with this kind of situation and how their players respect rules of their cricket board. Look at countries like England and Australia.

BNP government in disguise

I have gone through the letter "BNP government in disguise" of 10 September'08 issue written by Abdul Moyeen. I read this letter attentively - and it was hard to believe it! In fact, I was doubtful whether it was seriously stated or not. However, if we see the last couple of days' developments between the government and the BNP, it seems the writer was right! It also appears the BNP has already gained or healed its wounds! Who worked behind it or who helped it really? There are three major driving forces - government, opposition and BNP itself.

A query

There is an aeronautical college operating in Uttara. While they are imparting diploma level courses, taught by diploma holder teachers, but they claim to offer the students a British degree in Aeronautical Engineering. Do they have any workshop, aircraft engine, component, tools, labs etc?

Slaves, not supporters

In my letter to the editor of The Daily Star dated Aug 24, 2008 I stated, “It will appear to any casual observer that in Bangladeshi politics the leaders do not have supporters or followers. They have slaves. These slaves blindly support their respective leaders, even if such leaders are grossly wrong, corrupt and unpatriotic.” Two most recent incidents further substantiate my statement. In one incident the standing committee of a major party sat in a formal meeting with its chief in the chair who was released from the prison on the preceding day.

Admission tests

The education ministry is planning to draft a resolution regarding admission into higher seats of learning, it's considering cancellation of admission tests and introducing admission based on students' GPAs achieved in HSC & SSC exams. Already admission into colleges is GPA based. And we know what a mess it has created! In this case it can somehow be tolerated but in case of admission into universities, medical colleges it should better be aborted for the sake of quality education. Getting good grades, especially in public exams, is not that difficult now, given the present system.

Visa issue

Why shouldn't issuance of prior visa be done away with between Bangladesh and India and also among the Saarc countries? I would like to know what is the problem between these two friendly countries.

International

US vows long fight on extremism after Pak bombing

The United States vowed Monday to step up efforts to help Pakistan in a long fight against South Asian extremism following a massive hotel bombing in Islamabad that killed scores of people.

Pak-Afghan coalition force proposed

Afghanistan's defence minister proposed Monday creating a joint force of Afghan, Pakistan and coalition troops to operate against insurgents on both sides of the Afghan-Pakistan border.

Stamping out corruption can save lives

Stopping practices such as cronyism and embezzlement can save lives in poor countries, a graft watchdog said yesterday as Somalia, Iraq and Myanmar again came bottom in its global corruption rankings.

The methane time bomb

The first evidence that millions of tons of a greenhouse gas 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide is being released into the atmosphere from beneath the Arctic seabed has been discovered by scientists.

India accuses Pakistan of 'serious' truce violation

The Indian army accused Pakistan of a "serious" ceasefire violation along the de facto border dividing Kashmir between the two nations after a gunbattle left two soldiers dead.

10 killed as gunman opens fire at school in Finland

A young trainee chef went on a shooting rampage at a Finnish vocational school yesterday, mowing down at least 10 people before turning a weapon fatally on himself, police said.

Livni gets approval to form Israeli govt

Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni yesterday received formal approval to form a new Israeli government, starting the clock on a 42-day period for putting together a new team and resuming Middle East peace negotiations.

Longest-serving Myanmar prisoner freed

Myanmar's junta yesterday released its longest-serving political prisoner as part of an amnesty for more than 9,000 inmates, but he immediately vowed to continue to fight the ruling generals.

'I will marry soon,' says Rahul

"I will get married soon," said Rahul Gandhi, the 38-year-old scion of the Nehru-Gandhi family.

Sacked Indian workers kill boss

Sacked workers in India beat to death the boss of an Italian company that had laid them off, police said Tuesday.

UN agency seeks $17mln for Pakistan

The United Nations refugee agency said Tuesday it was seeking 17.2 million dollars (11.6 million euros) to help more than 300,000 people forced from their homes in Pakistan by floods and fighting.

Orissa flood situation turns grim

As gushing water from breaches in Orissa's Mahanadi delta engulfed fresh areas, more naval and para-military men today joined relief work for the marooned people in the flood which affected 38 lakh people and claimed at least 31 lives.

Arts & Entertainment

Iftar in a different setting

Nowadays, when one looks at the front page of the national dailies or the TV screen, one can hardly be unaware of the frenzied consumers and not feel the pulse of the denizens at the shopping arcades. Makeshift stalls and restaurants are selling the mouth-watering iftar items ranging from jilebi, haalim, dahi-bara and many more. Ramadan is on.

The Sign of Reality

Religion, culture and spirit are the main features of the artworks by Fijian artist Jossaia McNamara. The six-day solo art exhibition titled "The Sign of Reality" by McNamara ended on September 22 at the Gallery Zainul, Faculty of Fine Arts (FFA). The exhibition was a part of McNamara's nine-month Commonwealth scholarship programme at the Department of Printmaking of FFA.

Theme song for “Dhaka Amar Dhaka” launched

A theme song for the two-year celebration of Dhaka's 400th anniversary titled Dhaka Amar Dhaka has been recorded recently. The launching ceremony of the song titled Dhaka amar ahongkarer Dhaka was held at the Bengal Cafe, Bengal Shilpalay on September 20, says a press release.

“Taare Zameen Par” to represent India at the Oscars

Will Bollywood superstar Aamir Khan be third time lucky? Will he break India's Oscar jinx? These are the questions doing the rounds in the Indian cinema industry after Bollywood "Taare Zameen Par", starring Bollywood superstar Khan as an actor-producer-director, was chosen as the country's official entry for the Oscar award in the best foreign language category.

“Biye Ebong Amader Golpo” on Banglavision

As part of the special programmes on Eid, Banglavision will telecast single episode TV play Biye Ebong Amader Golpo on the third day of Eid at 11:20 pm. Written by Faruk Hossain and directed by Taher Shipon the play revolves around a young couple who decide to get married but are uncertain about their future.

Drama serial “Shonalu Phul” on ATN Bangla

Drama serial Shonalu Phul will be aired tonight on ATN Bangla at 8pm. Written by Kazi Shahidul Islam and directed by Ashraful Alam Ripon, this is the fourth episode of the new drama serial.

OP-ED

Fall of the Titans

Today saw the demise of investment banks on Wall Street. The last of the two large independent investment banks -- Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs -- have asked to be supervised by the Federal Reserve Bank (Fed) of the US, like all other commercial banks.

An eminent scientist and visionary

Anwar Hossain was one of 12 brothers and sisters. He was the most talented one, enjoying a brilliant academic career all through, and securing first class first position in M.Sc in Physics from Dhaka University in the year 1951. Three years later, at the young age of 25, he obtained Ph.D in Physics from Bristol University, UK, working under the guidance of the famous nuclear scientist, Professor Rutherford.

Back to the end of history

In 1992, Francis Fukuyama, a second-generation Japanese-American historian and philosopher, published the precocious, controversial treatise The End of History, which held that the age-old struggle over political ideologies had ended and that liberal democracy was the victor. But the past 16 years -- the rise of Russian authoritarianism, China's huge economic growth and the failure of neo-conservative ideals in Iraq, where Fukuyama argued early to dislodge Saddam Hussein -- have cast doubt on his premise. He spoke with Newsweek's Matthew Philips.

Time to return to the simplest tax system of all

With the financial crisis in full flow, we're going to talk about money. Our topic today, boys and girls, is "tax and tax-collectors." The word "tax" comes from the word "attacks," and refers to what tax-collectors do to taxpayers. They attack us and take our money.

Star City

45,000 vehicles dodge fitness, pay no tax, fines for long

As many as 44,915 registered vehicles operating in Dhaka and surrounding areas have not appeared for renewing their fitness certificates for a long time, sources from Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTA) said.

Special buses too meagre to ease women commuters’ woes

Women commuters continue to face hassles on their way to work and back home every day as the number of special buses introduced for them is inadequate in the city.

54 accident-prone spots where 400 die, 700 get hurt annually

Accident researchers have identified 54 spots in the city where most of the fatal road accidents take place. On average, 400 people die and about 700 are injured annually at these spots, according findings of a study.



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