The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Friday, April 25, 2014


News of: Thursday, 30th of October, 2008

Front Page

Aug 21 case goes to trial

A Dhaka court yesterday finally framed charges against detained former BNP lawmaker Abdus Salam Pintu, Harkatul Jihad (Huji) chief Mufti Abdul Hannan and 20 others in two cases filed for grenade attacks on an Awami League (AL) rally in August 2004.

Delay over constituency writ to spoil polls fixture

The Election Commission (EC) is more than likely to be unable to announce the detailed schedule for the December 18 parliamentary election on its declared date of November 2, as it is still embroiled in defending its redemarcation of constituencies in court.

Ex-CEC MA Aziz out to get BNP nomination?

A meeting between BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia and former chief election commissioner (CEC) Justice MA Aziz on Tuesday made many of the party leaders and workers aggrieved, and they viewed that the party should not entertain a 'controversial' figure like him.

At least 170 killed in Pakistan quake

A strong earthquake struck before dawn yesterday in impoverished southwestern Pakistan, killing at least 170 people, and turning thousands of homes of mud and timber homes into rubble.

Tac extends deadline to November 15 for seeking clemency

The Truth and Accountability Commission (Tac) yesterday extended the deadline to apply for clemency for the third time till November 15 as it thinks more hearing would help look deep into institutional corruption.

Destruction of 'toxic' milk raises question

Law enforcers seized 5,835kg powdered milk of banned brands from shops in different parts of the country and fined them Tk 4.52 lakh in the last two days. Mobile courts in Barguna and Chapainawabganj also burnt a good amount of banned baby formula.

4-lane Dhaka-Ctg highway uncertain

The advisory committee on purchase yesterday sent back the project proposal for a dedicated four-lane highway between Dhaka and Chittagong.

Probes politicised

As new findings confirm link of some Islamist militants and a BNP deputy minister to the grenade attack on an Awami League rally in 2004, all past investigations and other actions of the then BNP-Jamaat alliance government now stand as a model of moral bankruptcy.

Politicians must learn or face return of 1/11

Political scientist Prof Dilara Choudhury said the country might experience a return of 'non-political forces' to politics if politicians fail to learn from the events of 1/11 and its fallout.

Barring convicts from polls with pending appeal unconstitutional

BNP has demanded that the caretaker government allow party leaders convicted by lower courts to contest the upcoming parliamentary election if their appeals against conviction are not disposed of by higher courts.

AL hopes for disposal of re-demarcation before Nov 2

Acting Awami League General Secretary Syed Ashraful Islam yesterday said they are hopeful about election on time if the complication from delimitation of constituencies is over before announcing election schedule on November 2 and upazila polls deferred to a convenient date.

Make admin neutral for fair polls

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia yesterday demanded that the government withdraw officials leaning to a certain political party from key positions to make the administration neutral.

SC upholds stay on proceedings

The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday upheld the High Court (HC) order that stayed the proceedings against BNP Chairperson and former premier Khaleda Zia in Barapukuria coalmine corruption case filed by the Anti-corruption Commission (ACC).

Ministries asked to remove barriers to implementation

A few top secretaries of the government yesterday asked different ministries to identify and remove bottlenecks to expedite implementation of the recommendations of the Regulatory Reforms Commission (RRC).

Falu's detention extended

The government yesterday issued a one-month detention order against detained former BNP lawmaker Mosaddek Ali Falu just before his release from prison on bail.

Police show SQ Chy as fugitive

The police in a report to a Dhaka court yesterday said they failed to arrest Salauddin Quader Chowdhury, parliamentary affairs adviser to former premier Khaleda Zia, in connection with a tax evasion case as he had gone into hiding.

HC adjourns hearing till Nov 23

The High Court (HC) yesterday adjourned till November 23 the hearing of the writ petitions filed by Awami League President Sheikh Hasina for quashing proceedings against her in the Niko and barge-mounted power plant cases filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

Govt blamed for creating confusion

Dhaka University (DU) chemistry department professor Nilufar Nahar emphatically said again yesterday that their tests of melamine in powdered milk of eight brands were 100 percent correct. She said the tests were done in three different methods and the results were checked repeatedly for confirmation.

Re-demarcation done as per rules, procedure

The Election Commission's (EC) counsel Shahdeen Malik yesterday told a High Court (HC) bench that the commission re-demarcated the parliamentary constituencies for the next parliamentary polls following rules and procedures properly.

GP delays listing

The planned listing of Grameenphone (GP) on the capital market has been deferred by five months to March 2009 due to the global financial crisis.

Tame draw hands Kiwis the series

Shakib Al Hasan and Mashrafe Bin Mortaza put on a stubborn 78 runs for the seventh wicket as Bangladesh recovered from an early morning jitters to enforce a draw in the second and final Test of the BRAC Bank Series against New Zealand at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur yesterday.

11 criminals held with arms, ammo

Police arrested 11 criminals and seized arms and ammunition and drugs from their possession in separate drives in Jessore town and Benapole area on Tuesday midnight.

Ctg mayor vexed at govt role

Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) Mayor ABM Mohiuddin Chowdhury yesterday said he will take a strong stand if the government does not allow him to resume his duties as city mayor peacefully.

Maradona to coach Argentina

Argentine football legend Diego Maradona was named coach of the national side here on Tuesday according to 1986 World Cup winning coach Carlos Bilardo after he came out of a meeting with Argentinian Football Association president Julio Grondona.

EC to hear objections against Jamaat Saturday

The hearing on the objections raised by various quarters against Jamaat-e-Islami's possible registration as a political party with the Election Commission (EC) will be held at the EC secretariat on Saturday.

Undecided voters wild card in presidential race

About six percent of US voters are still undecided in the final sprint of the White House race, boosting Republican John McCain hopes he may yet pull off a last-minute election day upset.

Nasheed new Maldives president

A former political prisoner swept to victory in the Maldives' first democratic presidential election, vowing yesterday there would be no witch hunt after unseating Asia's longest-serving leader.

Pakistan asks US to halt border strikes

Pakistan's government summoned the US ambassador yesterday to urge an immediate halt to missile strikes on suspected militant hide-outs near the Afghan border.

Serial suicide blasts in Somalia kill 25

At least 25 people in addition to the bombers were killed in five suicide car bomb attacks yesterday in two northern Somali breakaway states, officials said.

Palin calls for break from Bush energy policy

Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin yesterday called for a "clean break" from the Bush administration's energy policies, which she says rely too much on importing foreign oil.

6 burnt in fire at diagnostic centre in Ctg

At least six people including a patient sustained burn injuries in a fire at a diagnostic centre near Mehedibagh in the port city yesterday.

Editorial

Role of DCs crucial for good election

WE cannot emphasise enough the importance of the role to be played by the Deputy Commissioners (who will also be acting as returning officers) for the integrity of the upcoming national election on December 18. Indeed, it is not overstatement to say that in the coming seven weeks, it is their performance, above all else, that will either make or break the election.

Consumers' rights protection law takes effect

ENACTMENT of a law to protect consumer rights was a long felt need that has finally been fulfilled. Consumers are now definitely better placed to deal with the anomalies, irregularities and fraudulent practices that they have so long been exposed to.

Day of deliverance

IN the next few days the closing arguments of both camps will have ended and the campaign trail will be closing up to the finishing line on the home stretch. Some analysts have already awarded the result of the joust in favour of Obama, and if one were to assume that the actual voting pattern will reflect the verdict of the various polls that had been conducted so far, than the American people will very likely have a Democrat in the White House, at least for the next four years.

Two of a kind: Shades of Maya in Obama's rise

BARACK Hussein Obama could not have been older than he is. He is 47. Four years after he was born, America enacted the first set of electoral and positive discrimination reforms that lifted blacks from the deep depression into which they had been cast after their escape from slavery.

A tool for rapid industrial growth?

IN the race for economic growth in a short time, developing countries of Asia, Africa and Latin America are increasingly looking towards solutions that will foster investment activities insulated from the quagmire of infrastructural and environmental bottlenecks.

Sports

A lost opportunity

The just concluded home series against New Zealand would be remembered as a lost opportunity for the Tigers.

Long gap worries giants

Playing a competitive match after three weeks could play confusion over the minds of local giants Mohammedan and Brothers Union when they meet today in the Citycell B. League, which resumes after a six-day break due to inclement weather.

Maradona is back!

Argentinian football legend Diego Maradona capped a remarkable comeback from a near fatal heart attack four years ago to being named coach of the national side here on Tuesday.

Kiwi captain pleased

New Zealand skipper Daniel Vettori expressed his satisfaction over his side's overall performance against Bangladesh although it was not clean sweeps this time around as he had intended before the tour.

Day One India's

Opening batsman Gautam Gambhir struck a career-best unbeaten 149 to propel India to 296-3 on an ill-tempered first day of the third Test against Australia here on Wednesday.

Ignorance is not always bliss

At times it's nice to admit to ignorance but definitely it was not respectful for Mohammad Ashraful when the Bangladesh captain said that he was not aware of the rules of follow-on in the rain-interrupted Test match.

Milestones for Anil & Sachin

As opener Gautam Gambhir hogged the limelight on the first day of third Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy at the Feroz Shah Kotla stadium here, India skipper Anil Kumble quietly touched another milestone, becoming the second most capped Indian Test player.

Nafis hits ton, Sylhet refuse to play

Sylhet refused to play as their rain-interrupted third-round match against Barisal in the Mirzapore Tea 10th National Cricket League was called off yesterday near close of play.

Leverkusen go top

Werder Bremen's defence leaked two late goals in quick succession to hand Bayer Leverkusen a 2-0 victory and three points to put them top of the Bundesliga on Tuesday night.

A controversial genius

Diego Maradona, who was on Tuesday named the new coach of Argentina, is a gifted yet controversial figure whose off-field antics could never overshadow his brilliance on the pitch.

'I couldn't have been fatter'

Brazilian striker Ronaldo put on so much weight while he was injured this year that he was running out of clothes that fit him, he said on Tuesday.

Boro blast foreign ownership

Middlesbrough chief executive Keith Lamb has blasted foreign ownership of English Premier League sides and vowed to keep the northeast outfit locally run.

Magpies beat West Brom

Joey Barton justified the faith of Newcastle United manager Joe Kinnear by scoring the opening goal as the Magpies beat West Brom 2-0 for only their second Premier League win this season.

Diego's highs and lows

The highs and lows of Argentinian football legend Diego Maradona after he was appointed national team coach on Tuesday:

Bellion fires Bordeaux

A double by English Premier League failure David Bellion inspired Bordeaux to a 4-0 hammering of struggling Le Havre on Tuesday and to the top of the French league.

Messi has no problems with Maradona

Argentina striker Lionel Messi has insisted he can work with new national coach Diego Maradona, despite his recent criticisms of the Barcelona star, Italian media reported Wednesday.

England cool on Thailand

The English FA reacted coolly Wednesday to claims by Football Association of Thailand boss Worawi Makudi that England will play Thailand next year.

'Nakamura going nowhere'

Celtic manager Gordon Strachan is adamant that midfielder Shunsuke Nakamura is not on the brink of a return home to Japan.

Matthaus questions Ballack

Former Germany captain Lothar Matthaus on Wednesday questioned the apology of Chelsea star Michael Ballack to national coach Joachim Loew after criticising the trainer for a lack of respect.

Gilardino appeal turned down

An appeal by Fiorentina over a two match ban for striker Alberto Gilardino, who scored with his arm during a match with Palermo at the weekend, was turned down by an Italian court on Tuesday.

Roma back Spalletti

AS Roma's under-fire boss Luciano Spalletti was given the backing of the club's president Rosella Sensi on Tuesday, after a series of poor results has left the capital club 15th in Serie A.

Steyn may be back against Bangladesh

All-rounder Johann Louw has been added to South Africa's ODI squad ahead of the home series against Kenya and Bangladesh, which starts with the first ODI against Kenya on October 31 at Bloemfontein.

Malinga getting central contract

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has on Tuesday decided to reinstate fast bowler Lasith Malinga's central contract.

Siddheshwari ride on 6-star Papiya

Papiya slammed a double hattrick to keep Siddheshwari Girls School alive for a place in the semifinals of the Dhaka Metropolitan Women's school football tournament with a massive 7-0 win over Azimpur girls at the Dhanmondi Women's Sports Complex yesterday.

Atiq, Momin slot hattricks

Atiq slammed a hattrick to help Tangail Zila Krira Shangstha brush aside Govt MM Ali College Kagmari 5-0 in the second match of the Shouhardo Cup football tournament here at the Tangail Stadium yesterday.

DDCA honours Tendulkar

The Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) yesterday felicitated Sachin Tendulkar for becoming the highest run-getter in Tests.

Long week for Pietersen

England captain Kevin Pietersen has admitted he just wants to get through the week in Antigua ahead of Saturday's 20-million-dollar Stanford Superstars showdown.

IBAIS-IUBAT final today

The final of the Mentors' Inter-private University football tournament between IBAIS and IUBAT will begin at 3pm at the Army Stadium today.

Stomach bug bugs England

England's preparations for their 20-million-dollar match against Stanford Superstars on Saturday has been hit by a stomach bug infiltrating the camp.

Business

GP defers listing to March

The planned listing of mobile phone operator Grameenphone (GP) on the country's capital market this year has been deferred by another five months to March 2009 due to the global financial crisis.

Prices of steel, materials down

Prices of steel and its raw materials have fallen sharply in the local market on the international market price-drop resulted from the construction work slumps globally in the wake of the ongoing recession.

Buyers step up hunt for liquid milk

Sales of liquid milk and milk powder of local brands are on the rise with consumers looking for alternatives to foreign milk powder in the wake of a melamine scare, retailers said.

World turmoil puts strain on diversified products

A severe threat looms large over the export diversification efforts with some diversified products, such as handicrafts and diamond goods already feeling the pinch of the ongoing global financial crisis.

Deadline for legalising income reset to Sunday

The deadline for legalising undisclosed income expires on Sunday as the original date, October 31, falls on Friday, the National Board of Revenue (NBR) chief said yesterday.

DCCI poised for gala event

Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) wants to place certain directives for the next elected government to run the country by holding an international conference on the occasion of the golden jubilee.

GP ready to enter bond market

Grameenphone has finalised its plan to raise Tk425crore ($60million) through private placement in the local bond market by next month, aiming to secure a healthy balance sheet before its debut in the capital market.

EPB urges RMG exporters to use Delhi facilities

Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) has asked exporters to avail themselves of the annual opportunity of sending 8 million readymade garment (RMG) pieces to India for the next year, although the 2008 quota for such export under a Dhaka-Delhi deal is yet to be fulfilled.

Journalism to promote local business

Business journalism can be a useful tool for promoting local business by highlighting the problems, prospects and challenges of businesses, and drawing attention of the policymakers.

Bangladesh fetches $130m RMG orders from Denmark fair

The ever first Bangladeshi garment fair in Denmark has fetched spot orders worth $ 130 million and huge inquires from the potential buyers of Scandinavian markets.

Banks losing edge

Abdullah Al Farabi, a retail investor in the stock market, once owned shares of some banks. Just a month ago, he disposed of the shares and invested in other sectors, eyeing quick profits.

Thai crocodiles feel bite

At the Elite Thai Leather factory in Bangkok, craftsman contort tough Thai crocodile hides into any style of luxury handbag a fashion designer wants.

Nervy trade pulls down stocks

Dhaka stocks fell slightly yesterday with retail investors remaining cautious about fresh investment after pressure from some merchant banks on their clients to go into forced sell-offs.

World oil prices higher in Asian trade

World oil prices advanced in Asian trade Wednesday, mirroring gains on stock exchanges, as markets looked to an expected rate cut by the Federal Reserve to boost the flagging US economy, dealers said.

Global financial woes hit China's 800m farmers

China's 800 million farmers are being hit by the global financial crisis as commodity prices dive, and next year could be even worse, state media said Wednesday, citing government economists.

IMF announces 20b euro rescue package for Hungary

The International Monetary Fund, the European Union and World Bank rode to the rescue of Hungary Tuesday, throwing the embattled country a 20-billion-euro lifeline as it fights the financial crisis.

Nippon Steel raises forecasts despite profit drop

Asia's largest steelmaker Nippon Steel said Wednesday its net profit fell 8.4 percent in the first half but forecast bigger than expected full-year earnings thanks to cost-cutting efforts.

China passes law to prevent embezzling of state assets

Chinese legislators have passed a law aiming to prevent state-owned assets from being sold too cheaply or embezzled by officials, state media reported.

Euro climbs against dollar before Fed rate call

The European single currency advanced against the dollar on Wednesday, ahead of a widely-expected steep interest rate cut from the US Federal Reserve.

Telenor to buy India's Unitech Wireless

Norwegian telecommunications operator Telenor is to acquire a 60 percent stake in the Indian Unitech Wireless for 1.07 billion dollars (840 million euros), it announced Wednesday after revealing disappointing third quarter results.

New Zealand trade deficit hits 3-year high in Sept

New Zealand's trade deficit jumped to its highest level for nearly three years in September, official figures showed, as falling commodity prices hurt exports and imports surged on high oil prices.

Sony operating profit plunges

Japan's Sony Corp. said Wednesday its operating profit plunged 90 percent in the second quarter of the financial year, hit by a surging yen, a weak global economy and intense price competition.

China insurers urged to help prop up stock market

Chinese regulators on Wednesday urged the country's insurance companies to use their position as institutional investors to help stabilise the stock market during the global financial crisis.

Correction

An October 29 Star Business report headlined "Highspeed teams up with Japan firm" mentioned that Highspeed's sister concern Bird Bangladesh Agencies Limited will own a 70 percent stake in the venture and MOL the rest. Actually, MOL will hold 70 percent of the joint venture, with Highspeed Group owning the rest. We regret the mistake.

Metropolitan

'Save Buriganga for sake of next generation'

The task force on saving the Buriganga river, maintaining its normal flow and navigability submitted its report to the government yesterday.

Call to establish physiotherapy college

Hundreds of physiotherapy students formed a human chain yesterday demanding immediate establishment of a physiotherapy college and resumption of classes at the National Institute of Traumatology and Orthopaedics Rehabilitation (Nitor).

Female doc held on charge of torturing domestic help

Mirpur police yesterday evening arrested a doctor on charge of torturing her domestic help in the city's Kalyanpur area.

City cops fail to arrest rapist of minor girl

Police could not arrest the rapist three days after he had raped a six-year-old minor girl leaving her seriously injured in the city.

Highest Korean military award for Gen Moeen

Chief of Army Staff General Moeen U Ahmed received “Order of National Security Merit” award from South Korea for his outstanding contribution to promoting defence cooperation and trust between the armed forces of the two friendly countries.

Drug peddler killed in shootout with Rab

An alleged drug peddler was killed in a shootout between his accomplices and Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) at South Keraniganj yesterday.

'Criminals killed Murad failing to extort Tk 10 lakh'

Bus owners of Ilish Paribahan and police said the extortionists shot dead a college student and injured two others at the transport company office in the city on Tuesday failing to extort Tk 10 lakh from the company.

Three PBCP men to die

A Chuadanga court yesterday sentenced three cadres of outlawed Purbo Bnaglar Communist Party (PBCP-ML) to death for killing four people at Jodupur village in Sadar upazila in the district in 1996.

Inadequate sanitation biggest killer of children under five

While the government claims at least 88 percent sanitation coverage, WaterAid Bangladesh said the actual sanitation coverage in the country is not more than 39 percent.

Anti-liberation forces must be defeated

The anti-liberation war forces including Jamaat-e-Islami must be defeated in all constituencies in the upcoming national election slated for December 18, said deputy commander-in-chief of the Liberation War Air Vice Marshal (retd) AK Khondoker yesterday.

'RTI ordn to cut journos' facilities'

The existing facilities of journalists in getting information from different public and private organisations have been curtailed by the Right to Information (RTI) Ordinance, said President of Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ) Manjurul Ahsan Bulbul at a seminar yesterday.

Partnership agreement with US state finalised

A state of the United States and Bangladesh have readied an agreement under the National Guard's State Partnership Program (SPP) for jointly addressing security issues, an

Human waste can replace 30m tonnes of chemical fertiliser a yr

Speakers at a view exchange meeting yesterday said organic fertiliser from human waste can replace around 30 million tonnes of chemical fertilisers per year if the country can be brought under eco-latrine project launched by an NGO.

Draft policy on occupational safety and health proposed

A draft national occupational safety and health (OSH) policy was proposed at a workshop yesterday to ensure workers' health and safety rights and decent workplace environment in the country.

CA conveys sympathy to affected families

Chief Adviser Fakhruddin Ahmed yesterday conveyed his sympathy to the relatives of those who have lost their lives at early Wednesday's earthquake in Pakistan.

Ten get life term

A Pabna court yesterday sentenced nine people to life term imprisonment in the sensational 'Khatbari dozen murder case' and acquitted 22 others from the charge.

Processions today for reinstallation of Baul sculptures

Eminent citizens, teachers, students, cultural activists and artists will bring out a procession today demanding reinstallation of Baul sculptures at the airport intersection in the city

Recruitment of doctor candidates demanded

The unsuccessful doctors in the 2nd phase result of the 27th BCS, who came out successful in the 1st phase of the result, yesterday demanded their recruitment in the government job.

Contribution of Moniruzzaman recalled

Dhaka University teachers yesterday said Prof Mohammad Moniruzzaman, noted litterateur, poet and lyricist and former teacher of Bangla department, was a jewel of the Bangla literature.

Charge framed against BNP leader

A Sylhet court yesterday framed charges against Kanaighat upazila BNP leader Md Abdur Razzaque for illegal storing of 40,000-litre diesel.

Father strangles son in Khulna

A minor boy was strangled by his father at Chuknagar under Dumuria upazila in Khulna on Tuesday.

Rebel air raids hit Sri Lankan capital

Sri Lanka's rebel Tamil Tigers, hemmed in by a major military offensive, showed they still have the teeth to bite back with air raids on a power plant in Colombo and a military base in the northeast.

Vested quarters using Islam to confuse nation

Speakers at a discussion said yesterday said vested quarters who try to establish Islam through destruction and violent movement harming the beauties of Islam, are using religion ahead of the national polls to confuse the nation for grabbing state power in the Muslim-majority country.

China struggling to meet environment goals: official

China is having trouble meeting energy efficiency and pollution reduction goals, but the government remains determined to reach the targets, a top official said yesterday.

Air chief calls on president

Chief of Air Staff Air Marshal Shah M Ziaur Rahman called on President Iajuddin Ahmed at Bangabhaban yesterday.

College student commits 'suicide'

A college student allegedly committed suicide at her house at Chotobongram in the city on Tuesday night.

Contribution of Bangladeshi labour in Qatari economy lauded

Qatari Minister for Labour Sultan Bin Hassan Al Dosari told Foreign Adviser Iftekhar Ahmed Chowdhury that Qatar welcomes Bangladeshi manpower and appreciates their contributions to the Qatari economy.

UGC draft policy on Nov 6

The University Grants Commission (UGC) will submit its draft policy on sexual harassment to the education ministry on November 6.

British envoy assures aid for CHT

British High Commissioner Stephen Evans yesterday visited Bandarban and assured his government's enhanced aid for development of tribal people in the CHT.

Road crash kills 2

At least two people were killed and 21 others injured in a road accident on Dhaka-Bogra highway near Soydabad approach road in Sirajganj early yesterday.

Four new river ports to be set up

Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) will set up four new river ports at Noapara in Jessore, Bhairab in Kishoreganj, Ashuganj in Brahmanbaria and Barguna.

SC upholds HC orders

The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday upheld the High Court (HC) orders that earlier granted bail to former state minister Amanullah Aman in five separate extortion cases.

Kulaura College exams foiled

A section of unruly students of Kulaura Degree College and outsiders yesterday forced examinees to come out of the examination hall to 'protest' the governing body's decision to withhold salary of vice principal.

National

Rivals thwart central BNP team's meet in Barisal city

The central BNP team now on a organisational tour of the country, could not hold its scheduled meeting at Barisal party office due to resistance by a faction loyal to former Mayor Mojibur Rahman Sarwar.

AL gives Nov 4 deadline to remove its chief, 4 members

Khagrachhari district Awami League yesterday gave the government a November 4 deadline for removal of Khagrachhari Hill District Council (KHDC) chairman and its four members for their alleged involvement with BNP-Jamaat politics and their 'planned design' to influence the upcoming national election.

Teachers join protest rally at RU

Teachers, cultural activists and general students under banner of Sculpture Protection Forum yesterday formed a human chain in front of the central library on Rajshahi University (RU) campus demanding immediate re-installation of Baul sculptures at the airport roundabout in Dhaka.

Absconding outlaw leader arrested

Police yesterday arrested an absconding outlaw at Dewra Elipara village in Tarash upazila.

SUST issues show cause on 27 BCL men

The authorities of Shahjalal University of Science and Technology (SUST) yesterday issued show cause notice on 27 activists of two rival factions of Bangladesh Chhatra League on charge of attacking opponents during the last few days.

5 depts closed at Barisal Medical College

Five out of 32 departments of Barisal Sher-e-Bangla Medical College (SBMC) were closed down and six other departments are on the verge of closure due to teachers' shortage.

BSF returns cattle trader's body

Indian Border Security Force (BSF) yesterday returned the body of a Bangladeshi cattle trader, gunned down by BSF on October 23 at Jajlalpur, a bordering village in Basirhat thana under 24 Parganas district of West Bengal opposite to Bhatshala village in Debhata upazila.

RU JCD leader wants ticket for JS polls

The joint convener of Rajshahi University (RU) unit of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD), Mousumi Nasrin, at a press conference held on the campus yesterday sought BNP nomination from Jhenidah-4 (Kaliganj) constituency in the upcoming parliamentary election.

Letters

DU admission tests

I would like to draw your kind attention to the revised DU admission guidelines 2008-2009 of Kha and Gha units. Along with the existing three departments Bangla, English and Mass Communication and Journalism a few more departments have imposed some admission prerequisites, which go against the fundamental rights of a large section of students of the country. The revised admission guidelines 2008-2009 of Kha and Gha units have stipulated that only those students will be eligible for admission in the Departments of Bangla, English, Linguistics, International Relations, Public Administration, Women and Gender Studies, and Mass Communication and Journalism who had 200 marks in Bangla and English each at the HSC level. As students from the madrassa education system do not have 200 marks in Bangla and English each, this precondition will obviously bar them from studying these valued subjects. It is worth mentioning here that Alim students of the madrassa system study the same Bangla and English books prescribed by the NCTB that are followed by their college counterparts.

Faltering warriors

The headline of Pallab's report (Oct:13) on our cricket team in ICL trophy appropriately sums up our spineless performance in cricket, be it 20/20 or any other format! "Morning shows the day" and I feel that Dhaka Warriors will continue the trend in ICL matches in a similar fashion. One day the batting will go down; on another day the bowling will be wayward and if both click, then poor fielding will cost us the match!

BNP and Jamaat

We saw an interesting poster many years back. A man was holding a placard written “I am against everything”. The BNP has been stricken with this syndrome. The Secretary General and his associates see nothing positive in the election preparation, procedures, EC rules etc. As they know that defeat will be their fate they are always in the denial mode. The BNP learned nothing from history. They destroyed the country, unleashed a reign of terror, terrorized and vandalized the minorities and political opponents, politicised the administration and other institutions and what not. The list is unending. They pushed back the country at least ten years through misrule. But neither their chairperson changed her attitudes nor her 'obedient co-politicians. They still think that the country belongs to them only. People are their serfs. They keep on hardening their stance with the govt. in every dialogue, try to dictate terms and bend the EC and the government. How much and how long the government will capitulate to their undue demands?

Islamic political parties

Recently, the demand for banning the Islamic political parties is getting momentum these days, although this demand was in the political arena for a long time. For the last one year or so, the demand for trial of liberation war criminals came to the peak and now it seems to be dying out. These demands are coming from political parties or their supporters and affiliated bodies. Why are we really demanding an end to religion based politics? We know that all political parties have some ideology and great leaders whom they follow. If this is acceptable to us, why cannot we accept the Islamic political parties which follow the ideology of Islam?

Going back to square one ?

One adviser is shuttling between the two ladies for their blessings to hold a free, fair and credible election that the present CA has been promising since his assuming power. As the election date is nearing the atmosphere of holding an election itself is becoming uncertain and more and more people are getting sceptical about it. The so-called dialogues are ending with new demands from the major political parties. While one major party want election under any circumstances, the other wants election as per their own style and prescription. This means that the latter wants an election letting free their musclemen and using money to create a level-playing ground, where their men can help them win.

International

Desperate search for Pakistan quake survivors as dead buried

Wailing villagers dug through rubble with their bare hands in a desperate search for loved ones missing since a devastating quake struck this village in southwest Pakistan.

McCain renews attack on Obama as he gains in three key states

A new poll published yesterday showed the US presidential race tightening slightly in the three key states of Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida, but with Barack Obama still clearly in front in two of them.

Gayoom loses to political prisoner

Asia's longest-serving ruler conceded defeat yesterday to a former political prisoner in the Maldives' first democratic presidential election.

Thai parliament okays border talks with Cambodia

Thai parliament has given the government the green light to launch talks with Cambodia aimed at settling a long-running border dispute, which boiled over into violence, officials said yesterday.

American school in Syria opens despite closure decision

The American school and US cultural centre in Damascus were still open on yesterday, a day after Syria said it would close them following a deadly US military raid on a village near the Iraqi border.

Nine killed in separate Iraq attacks

At least nine people were killed in attacks in Iraq yesterday, including four policemen and a leader of a group fighting Al-Qaeda, security officials said.

UN chief to visit South Asia this week

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon is to visit India, Nepal and Bangladesh on his first official trip to the region, officials said yesterday.

Sri Lankan troops capture rebel town

Sri Lanka Sri Lankan troops captured a small village in northern Sri Lanka on Wednesday, pushing ahead with their offensive against the Tamil Tigers hours after the rebel group launched a brazen airstrike on the capital, the military said.

Eggs recalled, exports halted as China's food crisis worsens

Chinese retailers pulled eggs off shelves yesterday and a supplier was ordered to stop exports, amid fears the toxic threat of the chemical melamine was far more widespread than first reported.

China asks Dalai Lama to respond 'positively' during talks

Ahead of a new round of talks with the Dalai Lama on the vexed Tibet issue, China today asked the exiled Tibetan leader to make "positive" responses and exert "tangible sincerity and action" at the parleys to be held soon.

Pact stops US incursions on Iraq's neighbours

A top Iraqi official said yesterday that the proposed security pact between Baghdad and Washington would prevent the US military from launching attacks on Iraq's neighbours.

N Korea's Kim suffers 'serious' health setback

South Korea South Korean intelligence indicates that ailing North Korean leader Kim Jong Il suffered a serious health setback, a newspaper reported yesterday, while the latest undated video released shows him touring the communist country.

4 troops hurt in Pakistan suicide attack

A suicide bomber rammed his explosives-laden vehicle into an army check post in northwest Pakistan yesterday, killing himself and wounding four soldiers, police said.

Iran's Khamenei sees no easing of hatred for US

Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, ahead of the US elections and anniversary of the seizure of the American embassy in Tehran, said on yesterday that hatred of Washington was deep-seated.

Tensions rise ahead of polls in Zambia

Zambian police went on high alert for fear of violence surrounding the presidential election, as a retired diplomat and a fiery populist rallied thousands of people yesterday on the eve of the vote.

Malaysia to hike cigarette prices to discourage smoking

Malaysia will fix a minimum price of 6.00 ringgit (1.70 dollars) for a pack of 20 cigarettes to discourage smoking, a senior health ministry official said yesterday.

Karzai admits failure in securing Afghanistan

President Hamid Karzai said yesterday violence had surged in Afghanistan, admitting his government's internationally backed efforts to secure the country had failed.

Migrant worker beaten to death in India

A north Indian laborer was beaten to death on a train by unidentified people in what is believed to be the latest attack on migrant workers in India's financial and entertainment capital, police said yesterday.

Arts & Entertainment

Nazrul Sangeet Shilpi Parishad’s homage to Abbasuddin

“To the conservative Muslim society of his time, Abbasuddin's voice was like a liberating experience; he opened the door to the world of music. In the 1930s, Abbasuddin popularised several Islamic songs written by our National Poet Kazi Nazrul Islam. This was in a sense, the Bengali Muslim's orientation to music,” said eminent researcher and Nazrul exponent Dr. Rafiqul Islam on October 28 at an event celebrating the 107th birth anniversary of folk maestro Abbasuddin Ahmed.

Kazi Salahuddin Ahmed’s “City at Night”

For his first installation work titled "City at Night" Kazi Salahuddin Ahmed has won Honourable Mention Award at the ongoing 13thm Asian Art Biennale '08 organised by Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy.

Celebrating the works of an iconic architect

For years, the Russian Centre of Science and Culture has been a familiar name in our country for its diverse cultural activities. This is most definitely because Russia has always exerted a bold impact globally with its great cultural heritage and outstanding literature. It is no wonder that some Russian writers are very popular among our readers.

Lalon and Abbasuddin anniversary observed

To observe the 107th birth anniversary of legendary folk singer Abbasuddin Ahmed as well as 118th death anniversary of mystic Lalon Shah, Bangladesh Loko Sangeet Parishad (BLSP) arranged a discussion and musical programme at the Shawkat Osman Memorial Auditorium, Central Public Library on October 28.

Sitar guru Badrul Huda no more

Ustad Badrul Huda, a sitar guru in Mymensingh region, is no more. He breathed his last at his residence in the district town on October 27. He was 65.

Garo songs take centre stage

Artistes of Askipara Garo Cultural Group in Haluaghat upazila performed traditional Garo songs at the auditorium of CARITAS' regional office. The cultural event marked the opening of a regional consultation meeting organised by Bangladesh Adivasi Forum and ILO Office in Dhaka.

Movie planned on Prophet’s life

The life of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) will be the subject of a new biographical film, Reuters reported. The film, titled “The Messenger of Peace,” will be a remake of the 1977 movie “The Message,” which starred Anthony Quinn as the Prophet's uncle and was directed by Moustapha Akkad.

“Brishtir Jonyo” on ntv

TV serial Brishtir Jonyo” will be aired tonight at ntv at 9:45 pm. Written by Pantho Shahriar and directed by Omlan Bishwas, the serial revolves around Brishti, who works in a private company. Her family is totally dependent on her financially. Everyday Brishti encounters many men in the workplace. These men try to take advantage of her vulnerability- a common enough scenario for working women in our country. As the serial progresses, Brishti's life begins to unravel.

“Nupur” on ATN Bangla

ATN Bangla will telecast TV serial “Nupur” tonight at 8:40 pm. Jointly directed by Aruna Biswas and Mithu Biswas, the story is the adaptation of a novel by Dr. Nihar Ranjan Gupta. The serial is aired every Thursday at 8:40 pm.

OP-ED

'From Hasina and Khaleda's speeches it seems they will try to correct themselves'

Dr. Dilara Choudhury is a professor at the Department of Government and Politics at Jahangirnagar University. Author of "Bangladesh and the South Asian International System" and "Constitutional Development in Bangladesh: Stresses and Strains," she contributes regularly to a number of professional journals. Twice, in 1989-90 and 1990-91, she has been to Columbia University as a Visiting Scholar. During 1996-97, she has been to University of Maryland, College Park, as a Senior Fulbright Scholar. She received Rokeya Podok in 2004 and UGC Award in 2005. Shamim Ashraf took the interview.

The classroom environment

THE problems in primary education are broadly two-fold: that children do not learn in schools and that a large number of them drop out. Findings suggest that only about 20% of the learners are able to read, write and tackle math with any confidence on completion of their primary cycle; and that the drop-out rate could be as high as 47%. I'm inclined to believe that the latter may not be as bad as that.

Protein bluff and export crisis

MELAMINE produced in underground plants and sold to breeding farms and milk purchasing stations was used in watered-down milk to mask protein deficient dairy and pass quality tests.

Star Chittagong

Turmeric cultivation thrives in CHT

Indigenous Jhum farmers in Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) have become more interested in turmeric cultivation as it is more profitable than other crops.

Hanging bridge on Toimathoi Chhara opens up opportunities

“Shashwata Bangla”, a hanging bridge, on the Toimathoi Chhara at Parshuramghat in Matiranga upazila under Khagrachhari hill district is not just a bridge to help people cross to and from the remote locality. Rather, it is more than that because of its far-reaching impact on the tiny area, alienated from modern civilisation for many decades.

The week that was

Rupali Bank managers' conference held

A conference for the managers of all branches of Rupali Bank Limited in greater Chittagong was held at Chittagong Chamber House auditorium on Saturday.


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