The Daily Star

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Monday, April 23, 2018

News of: Saturday, 18th of October, 2008

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Front Page

Steps for security of possible candidates

The police headquarters (PHQ) has asked all of its units and branches to collect intelligence about probabilities of violent attacks on possible electoral candidates, in an effort to ensure their security.

Good for some, bad for the others, worst for women

Rickshawpullers, male garment workers and workers of real estate and railway are luckier than those engaged in other non-farm sectors -- their real earning increased while the rest's dropped in the second quarter of 2007.

Diversify products, boost marketing for golden days

The country needs to diversify its jute products and adopt a strong marketing policy in order to revive the jute sector now that the world is increasingly leaning to biodegradable products, experts said.

Sale of powder milk down, price of raw milk up

The sale of all brands of powdered milk dropped significantly in the city during the last two days as the government advised people Thursday not to consume eight brands of imported powdered milk.

Keep a law for public debate among leaders

Political scientist Prof Talukder Maniruzzaman has proposed incorporating in electoral laws a provision for public debates among top leaders of political parties before national polls.

Tigers show patience

A record fifth-wicket partnership between Mehrab Hossain and Mushfiqur Rahim rallied Bangladesh to a solid position against New Zealand on a fascinating first day's play in the first Test at the Chittagong Divisional Stadium yesterday.

‘Higher edn, equal role in economy, politics a must’

Higher education and equal participation in economic and political activities are essential for Asian women to get past the class and gender barriers, speakers yesterday said.

‘Mini Kissinger’ dialoguing with corrupt politicians

Gono Forum President Dr Kamal Hossain lambasted Commerce Adviser Hossain Zillur Rahman yesterday calling him a 'mini Kissinger' for 'dialoguing with corrupt politicians'.

UN chief to observe poll preparation, meet CA

United Nations (UN) Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is scheduled to arrive in Dhaka on November 1 or 2 to observe first-hand the situation in the build-up to the December 18 national election.

Mohiuddin Chy off to Bangkok as daughter dies

Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) Mayor ABM Mohiuddin Chowdhury along with his wife and son left for Bangkok where his daughter died of cancer yesterday.

Pest attack, blight threaten Aman target in N-dists

Insect infestation and blight of Aman paddy in large areas of northern districts are threatening the achievement of 1.36 crore tonnes Aman production target this season.

Donors won’t cut aid, will try to increase it

Bangladesh Bank Governor Salehuddin Ahmed yesterday said multilateral donors like the World Bank and IMF would not cut their assistance to Bangladesh in the wake of global financial crisis.

Put back Baul singers’ statues near ZIA

Cultural activists and eminent citizens yesterday demanded reinstallation of the sculptures of the Baul singers (folk singers) at the Zia International Airport intersection saying that an attack on the sculptures is an attack on our culture, Liberation War and the country.

Ancient figures dance together

The officials of the Department of Archaeology recently discovered an ancient engraved stone believed to be of Gupta era from the bank of a pond near Sura Masjid at Ghoraghat Upazila in Dinajpur.

Statues will be pulled down if Islamists come to power

Chairman of a faction of Islami Oikya Jote (IOJ) Fazlul Haq Amini yesterday said statues built by Sheikh Hasina-led past government will be demolished if an Islamic government is formed in the country.

Rejoinder and our reply

In a rejoinder, the Supreme Court (SC) Registrar's Office has protested some comments published lately in several dailies including The Daily Star quoting renowned jurist barrister Rafique-ul Huq.

Tendulkar breaks Lara's Test run record

Sachin Tendulkar of India overtook retired West Indian captain Brian Lara yesterday to become Test cricket's highest run-getter.

‘Voter turnout, not number of parties, yardstick of credible poll’

Awami League (AL) presidium member Amir Hossain Amu yesterday said voter turnout should be the yardstick to measure credibility of an election, not the number of contending political parties.

Govt tenure will end Dec 31, says Hassan Ariff

Law Adviser AF Hassan Ariff yesterday said tenure of the current caretaker government will end on December 31.

Top French bank loses $800m in bad trades

The French bank Caisse d'Epargne lost around 600 million euros (800 million dollars) in a derivatives trading "incident" during last week's market turmoil, the company said yesterday in a statement.

Asia should consider bank guarantees: IMF

Asian economies may have to consider guaranteeing bank deposits as a defensive option against global market turmoil although the region's financial system remains sound, the IMF's Asia chief believes.

Two outlaws killed in ‘shootouts’ in Rajshahi, Kushtia

Two underground operatives were killed during “shootouts” between the law enforcers and their cohorts in Kushtia and Rajshahi early yesterday.

2 crushed under wheels of train

Two people were crushed under the wheels of a train while gossiping on a rail track at Khalishpur early yesterday.

ACC sues former BNP lawmaker, 8 others

The Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) has filed a case against former BNP lawmaker Mozammel Huq and eight others for embezzlement of a school fund.

‘Huji had plan to snatch Mufti Hannan from custody’

Four arrested activists of outlawed Harkat-ul-Jihad (Huji) told police during interrogation on Thursday night that they had a plan to forcibly free their leader Mufti Abdul Hannan from custody.

Lanka seeks to avoid spat with India over military drive

Sri Lanka's government said yesterday it would send a delegation to India to defuse mounting tensions over the escalating war against Tamil Tiger rebels.

Briton jailed for racist murder of Bangladeshi

A British soldier was jailed for life yesterday for the racist murder of a Bangladeshi waiter in Scotland, in a case which triggered high emotions and which has dragged on for 14 years.

Lanka pulls 60 food items off shelves

Sri Lanka yesterday banned the sale of 60 local and imported food items, fearing they may be tainted with melamine.

Pak airstrikes kill 60 militants

Airstrikes by Pakistani jets killed 60 pro-Taliban fighters in the restive northwest while a Chinese engineer seized seven weeks ago escaped from his kidnappers, security officials said yesterday.


Trivialising the melamine scare

Amonth has passed since we were caught up in melamine scare triggered by detection of the industrial toxic element in Chinese powder milk which took a toll of child lives with 54,000 children fallen sick in that country. What have we done all this time to screen out hazardous milk available in the local market? Virtually nothing, just waiting for authentic test results from our research centres as the milk got consumed indiscriminately with damage being done to public health, especially child health -- insidiously. Melamine deposits in the kidney hinders its functioning apart from forming stones in the bladder.

Farm output

THE occasion of World Food Day provided the opportunity for local and UN agriculture experts and the government top executives to take a deep look at the prevailing conditions in the agriculture sector of the country. Though we have heard of some success stories like bumper Boro cultivation past season to inspire us, yet we believe a great deal still remains to be achieved to reach the desired goal. There is no denying that with the rapid growth of our population the necessity to pay more attention to increasing domestic food output is but a stark reality that has to be addressed with more dynamism in thoughts and action. Food being the daily requirement of the fifteen crore people of the country, there is no scope to push the issue behind other less important ones. Boosting domestic farm output has become more pertinent today as the price index of food items in the international markets fail to remain at a stable level. From our past experiences we strongly feel the country needs a pragmatic and sustainable agricultural policy backed by government and non-government support to farmers to ensure food security. It needs no emphasising that Bangladesh, because of the lack of a stable agriculture policy, is faced with multifarious problems that need immediate attention of the government.

Future challenges for the US leadership

RECENT debates have confirmed the important role of such a form of engagement in US electoral politics. The long awaited first showdown between Mr McCain and Mr Obama, the two US Presidential candidates, took place in the last week of September. It was followed by a debate between the Vice-Presidential rivals. The Presidential contenders returned to the podium a few days later. Foreign policy, national security and domestic issues (proposals that might affect taxation, healthcare and socio-economic opportunities) related to the troubled US social-economic scene took center-stage.

Contain crimes from reaching new heights

FOR the last three months, Dhaka city has been witness to a series of horrific crimes including murder, extortion and rape, some of which happened in unusual circumstances. The murder of Fariduddin, a businessman at Shyampur, in the morning of August 14 last while he was taking breakfast in his own restaurant followed by the killing of Rubel Howladar, a driver of a microbus, on the same day at Gulshan Link road after taking possession of his vehicle, are painful reminders of the violence and anarchy that gripped the country in the pre 1/11 days. The deteriorating law and order situation that marked the rule of the past alliance government had shown remarkable signs of improvement after the take over by the present CTG, but now with their days numbered and all eyes focused on holding the parliamentary elections in December next, the law and order has slipped considerably.

Bank on Swiss bank savings

THIS is not a grandma's prescription. This is plain commonsense. Whenever you are hard up you reach for the money you have hidden. India or, for that matter, the entire South Asia, is facing the crisis of liquidity. And this is the time when politicians, industrialists and bureaucrats from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka should bring back the money they have stashed away in Swiss banks.


Mehrab's timely knock

Just like he allowed no good opportunity go through to the wicketkeeper, Mehrab Hossain showed the mood to hold on to a chance to cement his place among the Tigers once again.

Chits From Chittagong

There was hardly any crowd when play started at the Chittagong Divisional Stadium yesterday. The galleries were empty and even the seats under the shades had no takers, while the AB Bank ticket counters had very few customers on the first day of the Test match. The 79-run defeat by the Kiwis in the third ODI also contributed to the frustration of the port city cricket lovers.

Booters face Myanmar

Bangladesh hope to bounce back from their 1-0 defeat in the opening match of the Merdeka Cup when they take on neighbours Myanmar in the second round match of Group B in Kuala Lumpur today.

Siddons relieved

Bangladesh coach Jamie Siddons was satisfied with his charges after the Tigers fought hard on the first day of the first Test against New Zealand at the Chittagong Divisional Stadium yesterday.

India assume control

Sachin Tendulkar created history as India thwarted a spirited fightback from Australia to reach 311-5 on the opening day of the second Test here on Friday.

The tributes flow in

India's President and Prime Minister on Thursday led a grateful nation in paying glowing tributes to record-smashing batsman Sachin Tendulkar.

Sachin fulfils destiny

If ever a destiny was writ in stone it was that Sachin Tendulkar would one day become Test cricket's leading run-scorer.

He misses his father

The family man beneath the champion cricketer came to the fore again and Sachin Tendulkar said he missed his deceased father after eclipsing Brian Lara's world record for most runs in Test cricket's history.

Second round NCL matches from today

The second round of the Ispahani Mirzapore Tea 10th National Cricket League will start today with the country's lone first-class competition returning to Sylhet division after five years.

MU count on Rooney

Manchester United are hoping to reap a dividend from Wayne Rooney's goalscoring form for England as they seek to close the gap on Premier League pacesetters Chelsea and Liverpool this weekend.

Drogba happy at Chelsea

Didier Drogba says Chelsea is the club that suits him best, a comment that may raise eyebrows given the Ivory Coast striker's often stated desire to leave Stamford Bridge.

Basile steps down

Argentina coach Alfio Basile has stepped down from his job for "personal reasons", the country's football federation announced.

Spotlight on Calderon

Spain's capital Madrid has been in the headlines this week with the controversy over whether Atletico's Champions League match against Liver-pool next Wednesday would be played at their Vicente Calderon stadium.

Roma hope for Totti return

AS Roma coach Luciano Spalletti is praying club captain Francesco Totti will be fit to play in this weekend's crucial clash against champions Inter Milan.

UEFA postpones Atletico ban

Liverpool's Champions League match against Atletico Madrid will go-ahead as scheduled in the Spanish capital after UEFA said it had postponed a two-match European stadium ban on the home side.

Liverpool lose Torres

Liverpool on Thursday confirmed that Spanish international striker Fernando Torres will be out for "between 10 and 15 days" after injuring his right hamstring.

Tevez dismisses unhappy claims

Manchester United's Argentinian striker Carlos Tevez on Thursday distanced himself from reports which suggested he was not happy with his current form in the English Premier League.

Petrov facing long lay-off

Manchester City and Bulgaria winger Martin Petrov is facing a lengthy lay-off after suffering knee ligament damage, City boss Mark Hughes revealed on Friday.

Hleb back for Barca

Barcelona's Belarus winger Alexander Hleb will be available for this weekend's match with Athletico Bilbao after four weeks out injured, the club said Thursday.

Deportivo in financial trouble

Spanish first division side Deportivo La Coruna has asked the regional government in Galicia for help to overcome its desperate financial situation, the club's president was quoted Friday as saying.

Taibu, Dabengwa star in Zimbabwe win

Zimbabwe swept aside Ireland with a convincing 156-run thumping in the first ODI of the Kenya Tri-Series in Nairobi. In pursuit of a challenging 303, Ireland lost their first four wickets inside 14 overs - a position from which they could never mount a serious chase, despite an entertaining 38 from the in-form Kevin O'Brien.

Klinsi backs Bayern

Bayern Munich coach Jurgen Klinsmann has backed the defending Bundesliga champions to recover from their worst start to the season in 31 years - starting with Karlsruhe on Saturday.

ICL-BCCI talks fail

Moves by the unauthorized Indian Cricket League (ICL) to gain recognition from the world governing body have been shot down by the Indian board, officials said on Friday.

Sachin will go on his terms: Anjali

Sachin Tendulkar's wife Anjali today said he will not stay a "minute longer" when he is not enjoying the game.

Jaques' back forces him out

Australian opener Phil Jaques will miss the rest of the Indian tour because of a back injury, Cricket Australia (CA) announced on Friday.

Murray crushes Monfils

Andy Murray reached his fourth semifinal of his last five events as the Scottish fourth seed crushed France's Gael Monfils 6-2, 6-2 at the Madrid Masters on Friday.

Cricket not on IOC's agenda

International Olympic Committee chief Jacques Rogge on Friday rejected growing demands from the cricket community to include the popular Twenty20 format at the 2016 Summer Games.


Shoals in Jamuna hamper fertiliser transportation

Transportation of fuel and fertiliser to Baghabari river port through the channel of Jamuna has become difficult due to poor navigability caused by hundreds of shoals.

Reinstallation of sculptures demanded

Pragatishil Chhatra Jote, an alliance of left-leaning student organisations, staged a demonstration on Dhaka University campus yesterday demanding immediate reinstallation of sculptures at the roundabout in front of Zia International Airport.

7.5 lakh suffer from blindness, 1.2 lakh added a year

Blindness is a major public health threat in the country, with over 750,000 people suffering from the malaise while 120,000 new incidences occurring every year mostly for lack of eye care resources and awareness.

Another bamboo-clay school building opens in Dinajpur

Another clay-, straw- and bamboo-made two-storey eye-catching school building was inaugurated at Rudrapur in Dinajpur yesterday near the similar old building which won the 2007 triennial Aga Khan Award for Best Architecture.

DU seeks govt allocation of Tk 27cr for new bldg

Dhaka University authorities have recently sent a proposal to the government for an allocation of Tk 27 crore to cover the total cost of an under-construction 10-storey building at Jagannath Hall.

Election under emergency can't be fair

BNP Secretary General Khandaker Delwar Hossain yesterday said election under the state of emergency cannot be free and fair.

Shahriar Kabir's 'War Crimes '71' premiered in London

A special screening of the documentary titled 'War Crimes 71' made by Shahriar Kabir, acting president of Nirmul Committee, was held at SOAS's Khalili auditorium of London University on October 16.

3-yr-old girl dies in gas cylinder blast

A three-year old girl was killed and her brother and sister injured in a gas cylinder blast in the city's Seroil Colony area yesterday.

10 tonnes of urea seized in Tangail

Police seized a truck loaded with 10 tonnes (200 bags) of urea fertiliser from the toll plaza of Jamuna Bridge east side in the early hours of yesterday.

Hotel manager shot

The manager of a residential hotel was shot and seriously injured as a gang of armed criminals sprayed bullets on him at the hotel at Rampura in the city yesterday.

Hassan Shahriar re-elected CJA president

Hassan Shahriar was re-elected president of the Commonwealth Journalists Association (CJA) unopposed for another three-year term.

Khulna AL leader murder case shifted to DB

Detective Branch of Khulna Metropolitan Police has been asked to investigate into the killing of Awami League leader Khan Ibne Zaman after Khalishpur police failed to make any headway in the case.

28th BCS preliminary test Nov 28

The preliminary (objective) test of the 28th Bangladesh Civil Service (BCS) Examination will be held at 10:00am on November 28 in all centres of Dhaka, Chittagong, Rajshahi, Khulna, Sylhet and Barisal simultaneously.

Teenage girl found dead in city slum

The police recovered the body of a teenage girl with her hands and legs tied in a sack at a slum at Gulshan in the city yesterday.

10 killed in road accidents

Ten people were killed and 11 others injured in separate road accidents across the country yesterday.

DU classes resume today

The classes of Dhaka University will resume today after a 23-day vacation on the occasions of Eid-ul-Fitr and Durga Puja.

Birth anniversary of Sheikh Russell today

Today is the 44th birth anniversary of Sheikh Russell, youngest son of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, says a press release.

Resist move to lease out gas fields to foreigners

Speakers at a roundtable yesterday urged the countrymen to forge a strong unity to resist the plot of handing over oil and gas to foreigners.

Brac wins world's largest humanitarian prize

Brac, a development organisation, has won the world's largest humanitarian prize for helping more than 110 million poor people with microcredit and basic services.


'Expulsion', 'counter expulsion' disappoint BNP men in Jhenidah

Expulsion and counter expulsion of party bigwigs by factions of Jhenidah BNP has left the grass roots level leaders and activists in despair.

DC, 3 health officials sued, test result held up following scam

Following a case for alleged question leakage and massive irregularities in the written test for the recruitment of staff under Gaibandha family planning office, Senior Assistant Judge's Court in Gaibandha on Wednesday issued show cause notice against chairman of the recruitment committee and three others.

Four on 5-day remand

Four people who were arrested on Sunday in connection with the case for murdering Dhandia union parishad (UP) chairman Arifuzzaman Chanchal were placed on a five-day police remand on Thursday.

Bright prospect of summer tomato farming in Pabna

Cultivation of summer tomato shows bright prospect in the district, thanks to the initiative of three farmers at village Char Gorgoria in Pabna Sadar upazila.

3 babies drown in Khagrachhari

Three indigenous children, two of them sisters, drowned in the Chenghi river at Betchhari village in Sadar upazila yesterday.

Saved from child marriage

A twelve-year-old girl was saved from the curse of early marriage following intervention of Daulatpur Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) yesterday.

4 hurt in Pabna clash

At least four people including a freedom fighter were injured in a clash among two groups of people over previous enmity at Debottor village in Atghoria upazila Wednesday night.

RMCH interns call off strike

Intern doctors of Rajshahi Medical College Hospital (RMCH) called off their strike on Thursday following an assurance of fulfillment of their demand.

Bidisha firm to contest polls in Gaibandha

Bidisha, former wife of Jatiya Party (JP) President HM Ershad yesterday reiterated her determination to contest in the upcoming Jatiya Sangsad (JS) elections from Gaibandha-1 (Sundarganj) constituency.

'Nominate honest candidates'

Speakers at a seminar titled, 'Ensuing Parliamentary and Upazila Election and Thoughts of People,' held at Satkhira Bar Association auditorium yesterday urged political parties to nominate honest and efficient candidates in the upcoming general and upazila elections.


Turkish military kills 35 rebels in clashes

Turkey's military intercepted Kurdish rebel radio chatter indicating that up to 35 guerrillas had been killed in recent clashes with troops, officials said yesterday.

Democrats' mistakes could still bring 'defeat': Obama

Barack Obama headed onto Republican turf yesterday bidding to seal the deal with voters 18 days from election day while warning Democrats not to forget their ability to "snatch defeat from the jaws of victory."

'Taliban ready to lay down arms'

Taliban militants fighting the security forces in tribal areas of Pakistan said they were willing to hold unconditional talks with the Pakistani government.

Thai PM rejects pressure to quit

Thailand's Prime Minister Somchai Wongsawat rejected pressure to resign Friday, as thousands of anti-government demonstrators marched in protest at last week's deadly street clashes.

Gates consults Congress on Iraq agreement

US Defence Secretary Robert Gates is satisfied with a draft agreement with Baghdad on the legal status of US forces in Iraq and has begun consultations with Congress, his spokesman said Thursday.

EU sticks to greenhouse goals despite money fears

Leaders of the 27-nation European Union pledged Thursday they will stick to a pricey plan for deep cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, saying the recent meltdown of financial markets must not deter efforts to combat global warming.

World peace efforts hampered by credit crunch: Ahtisaari

The international financial crisis is hampering efforts towards world peace, Nobel Peace Prize winner Martti Ahtisaari warned yesterday.

Jokes all around as McCain, Obama join charity roast

The pitched battle for the White House briefly made way for good humour and a good cause Thursday as Barack Obama and John McCain traded jibes at a white-tie charity dinner in New York.

23 killed in Mogadishu fighting

At least 23 people were killed in the Somali capital Mogadishu when insurgents attacked camps housing African Union and Ethiopian troops on Thursday, triggering heavy clashes, witnesses and police said.

Indo-Pak forces strike accord on joint border patrol

Border forces of Pakistan and India decided on Thursday to halt defence-related works on both sides, start joint patrol to curb smuggling and repatriate as early as possible people crossing the border inadvertently.

Lankan troops captures rebel-held town

Sri Lankan troops captured a rebel-held town in the island's north following heavy fighting that killed a large group of guerrillas, the defence ministry said yesterday.

17 civilians killed in Afghan airstrike

At least 17 civilians, including women and children, were killed in a military operation in Afghanistan, according to a provincial government official giving the first official death toll yesterday.

Tehran mayor backs talks with US

The mayor of Tehran, a possible contender for the Iranian presidency, said yesterday his country would welcome talks with the United States as supported by White House contender Barack Obama.

Stormy scenes in Indian parliament as session begins

Parliament session commenced yesterday amid tempestuous scenes in the Rajya Sabha with BJP vociferously raising issues like terrorism and price rise and Left moving a privilege motion against Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on the Indo-US nuclear deal.

60 killed in violence against Christians

At least 60 Christians have been killed over the past two months in eastern India in a brutal backlash to the murder of a revered Hindu holy man, a national bishops' body said yesterday.

India deploys warship to police pirate-infested Gulf of Aden

India said yesterday it is deploying a warship to protect its merchant vessels in the pirate-infested Gulf of Aden off the coast of Somalia.

Pakistani judge extends detention of US national

A Pakistani judge yesterday extended the detention of an American who police say was caught trying to sneak into a militant-infested region near the Afghan border.

Arts & Entertainment

Heretic tales

An indigenous Mexican boy hugging a greasy looking pole. Hands around his feet, either pushing the boy up or trying to pull him down. A blazing sun, perhaps during dusk, thick black smoke and searing flames in the background. The caption reads, "Virgil on the Greased Pole" (Nochixtlán, Oaxaca, Mexico).

Najma Akhter: In quest of purity

Najma Akhter embarked on her voyage from Oriental to abstract art in 2003. As a student of the Oriental Department, Faculty of Fine Arts, Dhaka University, she was immersed in portraying human relationships and nature. Eventually Najma realised that the rigours of Oriental art were not suitable for her modernistic sensibilities. She then entered into in a new orbit of lines, colours, forms and texture when she found a dominant facet in art, which is distinctive, imaginative and cerebral. To art lovers, her works appear as pieces of cloud where she cultivates her agony, yearning, happiness and desire.

“The Secret Life of Bees”: A sweet dollop of Hollywood clichés

In an age when Will Smith is the world's most popular movie star and Barack Obama could well be elected president, it's fair to ask: Isn't it time that Hollywood took a sabbatical -- maybe a permanent one -- from movies in which black characters exist primarily to save the souls of white ones?

Shironamhin to release new album in December

Fusion band Shironamhin, popular for its thematic lyrics and post-modern approach to music, is working on its third album. The album titled Bondho Janala will be released this December. Ichchhey Ghuri, the band's second album, was released in 2006 and its debut album Jahaaji was released in 2004.

Ringo Starr refuses to sign fan mail or memorabilia

Former Beatle Ringo Starr has given his fans a ticket to ride.

“Ekdiner Raja” on ntv tonight

Single-episode play Ekdiner Raja will be aired on ntv tonight at 9 pm. Written by Muhammad Zafar Iqbal and directed by Abdullah Rana, the play depicts the story of a university student seemingly hitting the jackpot, but only for a day.

Drama serial “Sagai” on ATN Bangla

Third episode of the drama serial Sagai will be aired tonight at 8 pm on ATN Bangla. Written and directed by M. Sakhawat Hossain, the cast includes Mamunur Rashid, Jayanto Chattopadhyay, S.M. Mohsin, Anisur Rahman Milon, Apurbo, Jyotika Jyoti, Barsha and others.

Aamir Khan as Kishore Kumar?

If everything works out, Aamir Khan might play the role of late singer-actor, Kishore Kumar in a movie by Percept Pictures. The company has even gotten a go-ahead from the singer's wife, Leena Chandarvakar.


'Election will be held on time and there is no alternative to it'

Born in 1938 in Sirajganj, Prof Talukder Maniruzzaman got admission to Dhaka University to study political science after passing HSC from Jagannath College. He obtained honours degree in 1959 and master degree the next year. Going to Canada with a Commonwealth scholarship later, he obtained PhD degree in political science in 1966. He joined department of political science at Rajshahi University the same year. He joined Dhaka University in 1974 and taught political science till the end of his career in 2001. Prof Maniruzzaman has written nine books on politics and security including 'Military Withdrawal from the Politics', 'Security of Small States' and 'Bangladesh Revolution and Its Aftermath'. Shamim Ashraf took the Interview.

Streamlining the intelligence agencies

SKEPTICS and concerned citizens may not be fully satisfied with the key institutional reforms started in right earnest by the present caretaker government. The expectations from the new order were high and thus dissatisfaction is not unlikely in an environment of unfulfilled aspirations. However, the present leadership has to be credited for at least initiating the long due reform efforts that may be carried to its desirable end by a truly representative government in the not-too-distant future.

A new face of urban transport

THE picture of a sweat-soaked rickety man pedalling away cycle rickshaw may be a thing of the past in India which has unveiled a state-of-the-art solar-powered version of one of the most popular modes of public transport in the sub-continent.


Old-age complications need selfless remedy

In any study at any level on the future liveability of Dhaka, the conclusion invariably is that the city is too populated, and the solution perpetually borders on the need to decentralise each and every national institution; in which proposed action the speaker/analyst/discussant without exception reckons that he, his family and his friends, and everything he needs and desires remains within the city premises. This writer is no exception.

Live in Dhaka or leave Dhaka: Environmental facts

Dhaka is the place which was made as point of attraction for all kinds of human activities since four hundred years back. Since then it has been growing with urban characteristics but in little planned manner. The rate of growth was not that much steeper than other surrounding growth centres. Even in British colonial times some districts near Kolkata were comparatively developed in many aspects in comparison with Dhaka. But after having the status of capital city of the then East Pakistan it started growing at a faster rate than the other districts. And after liberation the growth rate in all urban perspectives was no match with those of other districts in Bangladesh. The provincial level administrative and commercial offices situated in Dhaka had been transformed into the corresponding head offices. The top level policy makers, officials and businessmen, as well as various other professional and non-professional groups, from all corners of the country started making room in Dhaka. Some of course opted for other comparatively developed districts like Chittagong and Sylhet. This migration toward urban centres is still going on. In the past the policy makers and the responsible authorities took little initiatives to cope up the situation for having no vision in their planning. In the present days there is poor headway in these regards; rather the situation is deteriorating so fast that within a short span of time it may go beyond manageability. Then Dhaka will lose its liveability and some may well opt for leaving it. Among the grave concerns, environmental factors will be on the top of the list. This article tries to focus on the anticipated environmental consequences of the development process of Dhaka and what could be the probable steps to mitigate the negatives.


Chasing the General

In some places General Gau's Chicken is better known than Colonel Sanders' KFC. Something about military men and their avian adventures remains a mystery that hopefully will reveal itself with time. But what is it about men spending their lives seeking the high of their first time? And what about when it involves chicken?

Life, Death and Destruction

My summer holiday seems very distant now, but this year, for first time, thanks to Dr. William Radice, I discovered the City of London Festival which has music, art and architecture events across London: he had invited a small group to a wonderful concert. This included a choral sequence “He Begins His Great Trance” with three sections, 'The Dark', 'The Music' and 'The Fire', based on Tagore's poetry translated by William Radice, performed by the BBC singers and set to music by Param Vir, the Indian-born composer. In an explanatory note Vir says:

London, 1971

I was about six years old when my family got on a plane bound for London from Lagos, Nigeria. I remember the elation that I felt at Lagos airport, the quick turn of my stomach as the roar of the BOAC airplane turned into a crescendo and it rose into the clouds. After sparring mildly with my brother for the control of the armrest buttons and gadgets, I spotted a teacher from the Nigerian school that I attended. She asked me if I was going for a holiday to London. I heard the faint rustle of my mother's sari, and before I could answer, she blurted out, quite tensely: “Yes, yes, we are only going for a holiday.” My teacher seemed satisfied at this answer, and turned away to attend to her own children's tug-of-war.

Star Health

Poor sanitation and unsafe water threaten health

Inadequate access to safe water and sanitation leads millions of our people to various health problems. Water and vector born diseases like diarrhoea, dysentery, typhoid, worm infestation and polio, malaria, hepatitis A and E are too common in the country. These diseases are specially very dangerous for the children under five. WHO states that one tenth of the global disease burden is preventable by improving water supply, sanitation, hygiene and management of water resources. Prompt action is required to ensure that these are implemented properly and sustained especially to protect our children.

Know your cholesterol number

High cholesterol level is a silent disease that offers no early warning. Most people first discover the problem during a routine physical exam with a blood test.

Awareness and preparedness crucial to combat bird flu

Awareness and preparedness is crucial to tackle an outbreak of bird flu before next winter. The issue was underscored in a recent NGO network orientation workshop on avian influenza organised by CARE Bangladesh, says a press release.

Chapped lips: What's the best remedy?

Most people get chapped lips from time to time. Lips may become chapped for various reasons, including:

Scientists warn youth: Turn your MP3 players down!

Millions of youngsters across the world could suffer permanent hearing loss after five years if they listen to MP3 players at too high a volume for more than five hours a week, EU scientists warned recently.

Paediatricians say double vitamin D dose

The American Academy of Pediatrics has doubled its recommendation for a daily dose of vitamin D in children in the hopes of preventing rickets and reaping other health benefits, the group expressed recently.

Strategic Issues

NIS and our expectations

NATIONAL Integrity Strategy (NIS) is a brand new venture to eradicate corruption from our country. We welcome them the way we did the present Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) and the way we did President Ershad when he called for Jihad against corruption. And also the way we did to all political parties' promises before elections. The consequence of all those optimistic welcome is today's pathetic reality. Instead of going by the history of all those promises/expectations, let us analyze the ongoing initiatives. Look at the mission and vision of ACC with objectivity: all the bigwigs are inside the jail, and in twenty months time corruption increased by 2%. Can any institution assemble more power and energy than the present ACC to eradicate corruption from this country? However, Bangladeshis being optimistic by nature, we don't give up the hope that one day honesty will be reinstated.

US economic crisis is good luck for Obama

THE US economy is in its worst crisis after many decades, sending shock waves round the world while turning the country itself upside down. Even the US$700 billion bailout package signed into law recently by the US President is being considered not enough to bring the US economy back on rails as people are losing houses, businesses and jobs. So far this year, 750,000 people in USA have lost their jobs. Europe too is in turmoil, and in UK the government has followed the US example and announced an 80 billion pounds bailout package. The IMF boss Strauss Kahn has said: "Intensifying solvency concerns about a number of the largest US-based and European financial institutions have pushed the global financial system to the brink of systemic meltdown."

Pakistan: From religious politics to religious extremism -PART I

FOR years, internal situation in Pakistan has been getting from bad to worse. With the bombing of Marriott Hotel in Islamabad on 13 Sept 2008, there is now serious concern about the long-term viability of the state of Pakistan itself. Is it going to be another Afghanistan, Iraq, Sudan or Somalia is the question. The worry is many times more because Pakistan happens to be a nuclear-armed state. Any nuclear weapon or fissile material falling in the hands of the terrorists will have disastrous consequence. The North-Western part of the country bordering Afghanistan, known as Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), has been virtually under the control of Islamic Militants, known as Pakistani Taliban. The Taliban are fighting a two-pronged war - in Afghanistan against the Afghan-NATO forces and in Pakistan against the Pakistani military; yet most of the victims of their random attacks are innocent civilians. They have imposed harsh and arbitrary 'Sharia' law on the populace that include random killing and brutal torture. The bombings and assassinations in both the capitals of Afghanistan and Pakistan by the Taliban mean that they have now extended their areas of operations right up to the capitals. The situation is further complicated by the cross-border operations performed by the Afghan-NATO forces into Pakistan, chasing and attacking the Taliban. Although this had been going on for quite sometime, probably with a nod of approval from the Pakistan government, but with the new elected government in place in Islamabad such news are putting them under increasing pressure. Although commentators are quick to blame President Musharraf for the mess, I would argue that Musharraf continued with a legacy that started with the birth of Pakistan as a nation-state.

China and India's naval confidence-building measures

India and China plan to conduct joint naval exercises soon as part of bilateral confidence-building-measures (CBMs) aimed at ensuring that competition between the two nuclear neighbours and economic rivals does not develop into conflict.

Sri Lanka applies pressure on LTTE

Sri Lankan government forces had reached the outskirts of Kilinochchi, the stronghold of the Liberation Tigers of tamil Eelam (LTTE), on 19 September, as part of a major offensive aimed at destroying the rebels as an effective fighting force before the end of 2008.

Star Books Review

Travelling an uneven road to democracy

As things stand, Bangladesh is scheduled to go through an electoral process to vote in its ninth Parliament, and, keeping with the norms of parliamentary democracy, the next democratically-elected government to run the affairs of the country. After an unbroken run of three parliamentary democratic governments, which were marked as much by some major dysfunctions in governance and the political process as by significant achievements in several key social and economic indicators, the country has been in the undesirable grip of an emergency for close to two years. This state of languishing in the doldrums of political torpor certainly does not help in the march towards the establishment of liberal pluralist democracy in the country.

Recompense for past pitfalls

Understanding the Muslim Mind by Rajmohan Gandhi looks like recompense for the past 'pitfalls' of the Indian National Congress in the half-a-century long freedom struggle in India that pushed Muslims aside from the political mainstream. It caused intractable Hindu-Muslim bitterness, eventually forcing the departing British Raj to partition the country.

Reflections on the non-violent soul

A deceptive cover which gives one a picture of being at a hill station. Browsing through it gave me a totally different image. First published in 1999 as Olives from Jericho it was published in India by Penguin books in 2000.

Story of an emotional ordeal

What would you do when you learn you've been jailed for seventeen years? Dip into utter frustration? Lose your sanity? Or look forward to finishing the stint and coming out and beginning a new life?

The Daily Star

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