The Daily Star

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Saturday, April 19, 2014


News of: Thursday, 29th of January, 2009

Front Page

New seat order unsettles JS

In protest at the rearranged seating arrangements, the BNP-led opposition lawmakers yesterday walked out of parliament shortly after the House returned from a two-day recess.

PM declares war on terror

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said her government would not hesitate to take the stringent measures to curb militancy in the country.

MRP alive again

The government has moved to expedite the introduction of machine-readable passports (MRP) as an international deadline for its implementation ends April next year.

Telecoms watchdog made all too mighty

The caretaker government on December 22 approved an ordinance amending the Telecom Act, 2001 bypassing the telecoms ministry and in contradiction with existing laws, making BTRC extraordinarily powerful.

Rights out in cold

It was tough to recognise the building as a government office at first sight. There was no reception or guard but only a gardener who confirmed it as the headquarters of National Human Rights Commission (NHRC).

NBR to unfreeze 45 bank accounts

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) is likely to allow reactivation of 45 out of 309 frozen bank accounts primarily after deducting the tax evaded by the account holders and 10 per cent fine.

Special JS body formed to check ordinances

The parliament yesterday constituted a 15-member special committee to scrutinise ordinances to be tabled as bills and make recommendation on those till the formation of standing committees on different ministries.

PM calls for constructive student politics

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said she is not in favour of banning the student politics in the country's educational institutions but she said students' approach should be positive and constructive.

BNP district units to be dissolved

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia is likely to start dissolving party's district units from next week in consultation with upazila level leaders to revamp the organisation that faced a huge debacle in the last national polls.

Modern education policy soon

The government will formulate the National Education Policy within three to four months based on the Qudrat-e-Khuda Education Commission report of 1974.

EC will not entertain anymore UZ complaints

The Election Commission (EC) said yesterday it will not entertain any more complaints concerning the election to upazila parishads, and complainants have to lodge cases with the election tribunals in districts.

3-tier security for Biswa Ijtema

A three-tier security system including helicopter patrol and close-circuit television (CCTV) monitoring has been set up at and around the Biswa Ijtema venue at Tongi. The three-day congregation is starting from tomorrow.

Barefoot 62 fail to pay fine, land in jail

A Thai court yesterday convicted 62 barefoot, disheveled migrants detained at sea of illegally entering the country, raising the prospect they could be deported despite fears they could face persecution or death if sent back to Myanmar.

7,000 child labourers doing hazardous job

Nearly a quarter of the total workforce in the ship-breaking industry in Chittagong is child labourers who are primarily used for the more hazardous jobs at the yards, a survey of two NGOs revealed this yesterday.

Kibria's role recalled amid recession

The country badly feels the absence of economist Shah AMS Kibria at a time when the global economic meltdown is shaking the world, speakers said at a discussion in the city yesterday.

SC upholds HC order on DU rules

The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday upheld the High Court (HC) verdict that earlier declared illegal the Dhaka University's (DU) new admission rules disqualifying madrasa students for admission to the university's seven departments.

Ministers talk to villagers on compensation

Two ministers and an adviser to the prime minister Tuesday visited Barapukuria coalmine area and held a meeting with villagers affected by land subsidence in the area to discuss rehabilitation and compensation issues.

Re-polling sought in 3 JS seats

Three petitions have been filed with the High Court (HC) since the December 29 parliamentary polls seeking cancellation of election in three constituencies, and directives to the Election Commission (EC) to hold fresh election for these seats.

7 students granted bail

The seven Jagannath University (JNU) students, who were detained by police during Tuesday's clash, were granted bail after being produced before the court yesterday.

3 whipped over teasing schoolgirl

Three young men were given 50 lashes each for teasing a schoolgirl at Char Kumuria in Vederganj upazila yesterday.

Huda gets bail in all 20 cases

The High Court (HC) yesterday granted ad-interim bail for three months to former BNP lawmaker Nazmul Huda in connection with a Tk 6 lakh bribery case filed by the Anti-corruption Commission (ACC).

Ferries stop for 13 hours due to fog

Several hundred vehicles got stranded on the both sides of Paturia-Daulatdia and Paturia-Kazirhat routes yesterday as ferry services were disrupted for 13 hours due to dense fog.

Obama's envoy for stronger Gaza truce

US middleast envoy George Mitchell arrived in Israel yesterday after saying it was critical to consolidate the Gaza ceasefire, as tensions rose after a deadly raid by Palestinian militants.

Editorial

Taking up interim govt ordinances

We applaud the announcement that parliament will constitute a 15-member special committee, including senior lawmakers from the opposition as well as governing benches, to swiftly determine as to which of the ordinances passed by the out-going caretaker government are to be ratified and signed into law.

Campus disturbance hits a new abyss

This time the battleground was Jagannath University and some of the parts of old Dhaka and the perpetrators were students of the university. Needless to say innocents were among the more than 100 injured apart from the dozens of vehicles having been damaged. Not only has the image of an educational institution been completely tarnished, it has also cost greatly in terms of street mayhem, damage to property and disruption of public life. And, inevitably, the university has been closed sine die in the usual escapist manner to let the tension subside.

The same old story

To see the AL replicating the actions of the BNP and the 4-party alliance makes us wonder whether our political leadership can really get out of the deeply ingrained mindset and display more prudence and wisdom, particularly insofar as it relates to government attitude towards the opposition and to some aspects of governance.

Shouldn't we pause to think?

South Asians remain divided in multiple ways. Each member of the Saarc has internal divisions. India has internal insurgencies going on, and India and Pakistan are immersed in communal hatred.

Through the eyes of an expatriate

The writer happened to be in Bangladesh on December 29, and was able to observe the national election first-hand.

Sports

Abahani on top

Abahani won the season's first battle against Mohammedan quite convincingly when the defending champions outplayed their traditional rivals by eight wickets in the Premier Division Twenty20 cricket at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur yesterday.

Sky-Blues closer to title

Abahani looked to be in a haze but had enough muscle to down an understrength Muktijoddha 1-0 yesterday to take a step closer to the Citycell B. League title.

India off to a flier

Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Gautam Gambhir cracked half-centuries to upstage Sri Lanka's Sanath Jayasuriya as India posted a six-wicket win in the opening one-dayer here on Wednesday.

Bangladesh to host qualifiers

Bangladesh will get a chance to take revenge against Myanmar of their last year's defeat when the qualifying Group A of the 2010 AFC Challenge Cup comes to Dhaka this April.

Abahani draw Turkmenistan champs

Inaugural B. League winners and current runaway leaders Abahani have been drawn alongside Turkmenistan champions Ashgabat and Sri Lanka Army in this year's AFC President's Cup.

Serena battles thru'

Rafael Nadal booked an all-Spanish Australian Open semifinal against Fernando Verdasco on Wednesday as Serena Williams clawed back from a set down in searing heat to keep her dreams alive.

Miandad quits PCB post

Batting legend Javed Miandad quit his post as Pakistan Cricket Board director general Wednesday following disagreements within the crisis-hit governing body of the country's national sport.

Niaz ends losing run

Niaz Murshed returned to winning ways when the Bangladesh Grandmaster defeated Mishra Soumyaranjan of India in the 1st Gurgaon Open International Chess Tournament in Gurgaon, India on Tuesday.

Indira, K'bagan group champs

Indira Road beat Motijheel T&T Club by four runs in a nail biter to finish on top of the Group A table in the First Division T20 Cricket League yesterday.

'Pak cricket in a mess'

Former Pakistan captain Imran Khan Wednesday urged President Asif Ali Zardari to reform the national game of cricket, which he said was in as much of a mess as the country.

PNG claim top spot

Papua New Guinea stood proudly on top of the World Cricket League Division Three on Tuesday following their upset 26-run victory against Uganda thanks to four wickets from Jamie Brazier.

Open tennis competition

Delwar of BKSP became champion in the boys singles 12-year age group when he beat Wang Mai by 8-1 games in the best of fifteens yesterday.

TT league

Last year's champions Sheikh Russel beat Biman 3-2 in a five set thriller in the last match of the first round of the KDS Dhaka Metropolitan Table Tennis Championship yesterday.

Nat'l junior chess begins

The BASIC BANK 30th National Junior Chess Championships got underway at the Bangladesh Chess Federation hall-room yesterday with 66 players winning in the opening round.

Div III soccer

BKSP beat the Muslim Institute 3-2 yesterday in the opening encounter of the Citycell Third Division Football League at the Birshreshtho Sipahi Mustafa Kamal National Stadium at Kamalapur.

MU demolish West Brom

Manchester United set a new Premier League record with an 11th consecutive clean sheet and maintained their grip on top place in the table with a 5-0 demolition of bottom side West Brom on Tuesday.

Milan to buy Becks

AC Milan moved a step closer to a permanent purchase of loan-signing David Beckham after saying they would buy him outright if discussions with his advisors bore fruit, Sky Italia reported on Tuesday.

Robinho in hot water

Manchester City and Brazil striker Robinho has been arrested over allegations of a serious sexual assault in a British nightclub, police and his spokesman said Wednesday.

Federer questions time-out rules

Switzerland's Roger Federer has questioned the rules on medical time-outs and warned the system was probably being "abused" by players keen to gain an unfair advantage.

Verdasco downs Tsonga

The spirit of four-time Australian Open champion Andre Agassi was alive and well on Wednesday as Fernando Verdasco downed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga to make his first Grand Slam semifinal.

Real target Valencia

Real Madrid have resumed talks with Wigan to sign the English Premier League side's Ecuadorian winger Antonio Valencia, local media reported here Wednesday.

Maradona picks Messi

Barcelona's star striker Lionel Messi was picked by Argentina coach Diego Maradona for their February 11 friendly against France in Marseille, the Argentine football federation said on Tuesday.

Balotelli staying at Inter

Inter Milan are adamant teenage striker Mario Balotelli will not leave the club in this month's transfer window.

No Spurs bid for Fred

Tottenham Hotspur's bid to sign Fred appears to have hit the skids after the Lyon striker failed to turn up for a meeting at White Hart Lane and the French club's president Jean-Michel Aulas revealed he had yet to receive a bid from Spurs.

Five-star Bayern

Bayern Munich returned from their winter holidays looking as though they meant business judged by the way Jurgen Klinsmann's men swept aside Vfb Stuttgart 5-1 on Tuesday.

Business

Recession creeps into ceramic tableware

Local ceramic tableware manufacturers have become the latest victim of the ongoing global financial crisis as their exports have been slipping constantly for the last few months.

RMG trade bodies seek fund to appoint lobbyist

Trade bodies sought financial assistance from the government for reappointing a lobbyist firm to work for the passage of a bill, NPDA, by the US Congress that will help products from least-developed countries (LDCs), including Bangladesh, get duty- and quota-free access to the US market.

Bishwa Ijtema begins tomorrow

Tens of thousands of devotees from home and abroad are trickling into Tongi on the outskirts of the capital to join the three-day annual Bishwa Ijtema, billed as one of the biggest gatherings of the Muslims in the world.

Gloom shrouds Davos summit

The annual Davos political and business summit started Wednesday with new warnings over the gravity of the global recession and the impact of the damage already done.

Automated clearing house by June

An automated clearing house, a system essential for electronic fund transfer, will be set up at the central bank by June, said a senior Bangladesh Bank (BB) official yesterday.

EPB moves on duty-free garment export to India

Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) is taking some initiatives to encourage apparel manufacturers to fully utilise the opportunity of exporting eight million pieces of readymade garment (RMG) products to India a year under a South Asian Free Trade Area (Safta) agreement.

Frozen food exporters demand easy loans

Frozen foods exporters yesterday demanded loans from “adjustable block accounts” so that they can overcome the sectoral liquidity crisis in the wake of ongoing global financial recession.

REHAB fair begins in Chittagong today

A three-day housing fair begins in the port city today.

Fish traders' leader gunned down in city

Extortionists gunned down a leader of a wholesale fish traders' association and shot his brother after storming his office in the city's Merul Badda area yesterday.

Irish businessmen urged to invest more

President Iajuddin Ahmed yesterday said Ireland could import world-standard Bangladeshi products like jute, textiles, readymade garments and ceramics at a very competitive price.

ADB to provide $2m for micro-insurance

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will provide a grant of $2 million to develop the micro-insurance sector in Bangladesh and help reduce the vulnerability of the poor from sudden losses in income.

Govt moves to cut egg, broiler prices

In a bid to bring down the prices of egg and broiler for consumers, the government yesterday formed a seven-member committee to reduce the price gap between producer and wholesaler levels.

US institute to work for economic cooperation

California State University, which claims itself to be the largest university system of the world, will establish a Social Business Institute (SBI) in its campus in the United States.

Sonargaon’s new finance director

Pan Pacific Sonargaon, one of the leading five-star hotels in the country, has recently appointed Asif Ahmed as its new director of finance, said a statement.

Housewife killed over dowry

A housewife who is a mother of two was allegedly tortured to death over dowry at Char Keoar village in the district on Tuesday.

India cuts growth forecast

Apprehending the worst slowdown in six years--since 2003--the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), India's central bank, on Tuesday drastically cut its GDP growth forecast for fiscal 2008-09 ending March 31 from 7.5-8 per cent to 6.8 per cent irrespective of joint efforts with the government.

Dollar mixed in Asia

The dollar was mixed in Asian trade Wednesday with all eyes turned to a Federal Reserve policy meeting focused on new tools to fix the crippled US economy.

Climate change setting penguins on march to extinction: Study

The emperor penguin, the species popularised in modern culture by the 2005 movie "March of the Penguins," are at serious risk of extinction in parts of their range because of climate change, according to a new study published this week.

Women drivers gear up

The age-old stereotype about "dangerous" women drivers is shattered and more and more women now take to the road.

In Philippines, even the church feels financial pinch

Evangeline Rellanos has been selling candles outside San Pedro Cathedral in the heart of the Philippines' Davao City since she was seven years old -- but she has never seen business this bad.

Stocks shake off losses

Dhaka stocks broke away from bearish trade and posted some gains yesterday, buoyed mostly by energy and pharmaceuticals shares.

Oil higher

Oil prices rose on Wednesday as the market awaited the latest weekly update on energy inventories in the United States -- the world's biggest consumer of crude.

Yahoo sees rough Q1 under new CEO

Yahoo Inc won't be consummating any deals with its jilted suitor Microsoft Corp. any time soon if Carol Bartz, the beleaguered Internet company's new chief executive, has any say in the matter.

Singapore Airlines suspends some flights amid downturn

Singapore Airlines (SIA) said Wednesday it will suspend some international flights as the worsening global economy takes its toll on travel demand.

Asia's economic crunch catches up with Australia

A slew of economic data Wednesday pointed to an abrupt end to boom times in Australia as Asia's fading appetite for mining resources and the global financial crisis put the brakes on the economy.

Embattled Japanese PM unveils jobs plan

Beleaguered Prime Minister Taro Aso called Wednesday on Japan to be confident about its future, despite the worsening recession as he voiced hope of creating 1.6 million jobs.

Correction

In a report published yesterday with the headline 'Spinners in the shadows of recession', it was inadvertently mentioned that the country has Tk 2,700 crore worth of spinning mills. Actually the amount is Tk 27,000 crore. We regret the mistake.

Metropolitan

BGMEA health centres lack docs, medicine facilities

The health centres of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) at different commercial hubs in the country are running with inadequate treatment facilities for garment workers.

Road accidents kill 9

At least nine people were killed and 45 others injured in separate road accidents in Rangpur, Dinajpur, Magura and Netrakona yesterday.

'Himur Maddyha Dupur' launched

Himur Maddyha Dupur, the latest Humayun Ahmed novel centring popular character Himu, was launched yesterday.

Urban areas to be worst hit by climate change: Muhith

Urban development planning and its implementation should be made in accordance with the impact of long- term climate change on urban areas, said the experts at an international conference in the city yesterday.

Govt doesn't want opposition to sit in parliament: Delwar

Condemning the seat re-arrangement in the parliament by newly elected Speaker Abdul Hamid, BNP Secretary General Khandaker Delwar Hossain yesterday said the government does not want the opposition to sit in the parliament although they are speaking of a new democratic practice.

39 stolen mobile sets seized

Rab members seized 39 stolen mobile phone sets and arrested one snatcher in this connection from a cellphone shop in the city's Jatrabari area yesterday.

HC adjourns hearing until Feb 3

The High Court (HC) yesterday adjourned until February 3 the hearing on the bail petitions filed by some politicians who were earlier convicted in absentia in different criminal cases.

Ex-Teletalk MD Obayed Ullah sent to jail

A Dhaka court yesterday sent former Teletalk managing director (MD) Obayed Ullah to jail after he surrendered and sought bail in a case filed for concealing wealth information worth Tk 1.38 crore to the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

Reunion of JU 11th batch tomorrow

A reunion of the students of the 11th batch (1981-82) of Jahangirnagar University (JU) will be held on the university campus at 9:00am tomorrow.

Terminated staffs clash with Rajuk Employees' Union men

Terminated employees of Rajdhani Unnayan Kartipakkha (Rajuk) yesterday clashed with the followers of the secretary of Rajuk Employees' Union over the issue of their reinstatement.

Govt report focuses mainly on two years of CG

Human Rights Forum on UPR Bangladesh, a coalition of 17 human rights, women and development organisations, yesterday pointed out 25 issues which were not expressly addressed in the government report relating to the Universal Periodic Review.

Revive democratic spirit

Gono Forum President Dr Kamal Hossain yesterday sought cooperation of the political leaders to revive the spirit of democracy and progressive thoughts that led the youths in the sixties to fight for independence.

Warrants for arrest of six doctors

A Dhaka court yesterday issued arrest warrants against six physicians of United Hospital in a case filed in connection with negligence in treatment causing the death of popular film actor SM Aslam Talukder Manna on February 17 last year.

One burnt to death, 100 shanties gutted in city slum fire

A man was burnt to death in a fire that gutted at least 100 shanties in the city on Tuesday night.

Germany to maintain high level of assistance

Germany will maintain high level of assistance for Bangladesh despite current international financial crisis.

UK agrees on feasibility study for farm projects

Bangladesh and Britain agreed to undertake feasibility study for new projects in Bangladesh's agriculture and food sectors, especially in the vulnerable areas like coastal, hilly and river belts.

20000 live on pavement

Several non-government organisations (NGOs) have jointly undertaken a five-year project to ease the suffering of people who pass their nights on the pavements in the city by providing them with skills-oriented training, other facilities and developing a sense of self-respect.

Reopen Mogholhat checkpoint to facilitate easy travel

The speakers at a meeting yesterday called on the government to take proper steps to reopen the Mogholhat Land Customs Checkpoint at Sadar upazila to facilitate their easy travel to the neighbouring country India for various purposes.

New Navy chief takes office

Rear Admiral ZU Ahmed took over as the new chief of naval staff on Tuesday.

DU JCD leaders call for security in dormitories

Leaders of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) yesterday threatened to paralyse Dhaka University by calling strike if their security is not ensured in dormitories.

Tk 23 lakh outstanding Wasa bills realised

Dhaka Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (Wasa) in a drive in Tejgaon, Mohakhali and Gulshan areas yesterday realised Tk 23 lakh outstanding bills.

Domestic help tortured by female doctor

A female doctor tortured her minor domestic help with a hot iron stick over a trifling matter at Adabor in the city yesterday.

Huge heroin, cannabis seized, one held

Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) on Tuesday night seized one kilogram of heroin worth Tk one crore from a passenger coach in the city.

Quack strangled in city

Unidentified criminals strangled a quack and dumped his body in the city's Dakkhin Khan area yesterday.

Gen Moeen's book to be launched today

Chief of Army Staff General Moeen U Ahmed's second book “Shantir Swapney” (in dream of peace) will be launched at the Kurmitola Golf Club Auditorium in the city at 4:30pm today.

killing of Sima condemned

Karmojibi Nari yesterday condemned the killing of Sima, a four months' expectant housewife, at Savar.

Clash over control of Babupura market

Two groups of traders locked into a clash over establishing control of a market at Nilkhet in the city yesterday.

Attack on New Nation editor condemned

Different journalists' organisations and forums yesterday expressed grave concern and condemned the threat to Editor of the New Nation over cellphone and attack on him.

Dhaka urges Muslim countries to be united

Bangladesh yesterday called for concerted efforts of all Muslim countries to resolve the longstanding issues concerning Palestine.

National

3.5 lakh sacks of fertiliser stacked in Bogra godown

About 3.46 lakh sacks of Triple Super Phosphate (TSP) and Murate of Potash (MoP) fertiliser kept in Bangladesh Agricultural Development Corporation (BADC) godown in Bogra cannot be distributed to the dealers due to lack of allocation from the Ministry of Agriculture.

Appoint VC, proctor, key officials immediately

Teachers, students, officials and employees of Rajshahi University (RU) yesterday demanded immediate appointment of a full-fledged vice-chancellor, registrar, proctor, student adviser and key administrative officials for running the university smoothly.

Booksellers in 8 N dists observe strike

Booksellers in eight northern districts yesterday observed strike protesting realisation of additional charges on textbooks by the publishers.

Notorious pirate Jihad held with gang men

Police arrested five pirates of the Sundarbans after an hour-long gunfight with them at Katamari area under Sharankhola upazila of Bagerhat district yesterday morning.

Publish result soon, demand Polytech students

Over two hundreds of students of Patuakhali Polytechnic Institute yesterday staged a sit-in in front of the deputy commissioner's (DC) office and submitted a memorandum to the DC demanding publication of the result of their examination of 2007-2008 session.

Delay drying up 38,000 stacks of compost

About 38,000 stacks of compost made under '100-day work' programme for unemployed people in seven upazilas of Patuakhali district are drying under the sun as farmers cannot use the natural fertiliser in their agriculture fields due to interference by local UP chairmen and members.

Two die after taking spurious liquor

Two people died here yesterday following intake of spurious liquor, police and hospital sources said.

House of Teknaf anti-graft body chief attacked

A gang of criminals attacked the house of Teknaf Upazila Corruption Resistance Committee President Zahed Hossain at Shah Parir Dwip Uttarpara under Sabrang union.

Tiger kills man in Sundarbans

A Royal Bengal tiger killed a man in Khukumari area of the Sundarbans yesterday, police said.

Forged land deeds seized, one held

Rab yesterday arrested an elderly man and seized many forged land deeds from his house at East Mollahpara in Paba upazila.

International

Pakistan says US strikes are 'counter-productive'

Pakistan yesterday hit back against US Defence Secretary Robert Gates, saying US missile strikes inside its borders were "counter-productive" to anti-terrorism efforts.

US pays $40,000 after 15 Afghans die in raid

US commanders on Tuesday traveled to a poor Afghan village and distributed $40,000 to relatives of 15 people killed in a US raid, including a known militant commander. The Americans also apologised for any civilians killed in the operation.

Myanmar faces food shortage because of Cyclone Nargis

Myanmar faces food shortages in many parts of the country, largely due to last year's cyclone and a rat infestation that destroyed crops elsewhere in the impoverished country, according to a UN report released yesterday.

France summons Israeli envoy over warning shots

France has summoned Israel's ambassador to protest after Israeli troops fired warning shots as European diplomats were blocked at a Gaza border crossing, the foreign ministry said yesterday.

UN to back attack on Congo rebels

The UN mission to DR Congo (Monuc) says it will provide support to the joint DR Congo-Rwanda operation against Hutu rebels in the east of the country.

Dwindling options for Tamil Tigers

Pinned down by an army that has shown remarkable resilience, increasingly friendless around the world and despised by many of its own, Sri Lanka's Tamil Tiger separatists have never looked so vulnerable in a quarter century of violent campaigning for a separate Tamil nation.

Hillary begins to leave mark on State Department

Less than a week after taking over the reins of US foreign policy, Hillary Clinton has left her mark on the State Department with a politician-style charm offensive.

IAEA chief snubs BBC over Gaza charity appeal

The head of the UN atomic watchdog, Mohamed ElBaradei, has cancelled planned interviews with the BBC in protest at the British broadcaster's refusal to air a Gaza charity appeal, the IAEA said yesterday.

Early voting begins in Iraq election

Polling stations opened across Iraq yesterday amid tight security in the first stage of the country's landmark provincial elections, the nation's first balloting since 2005.

Iranian leader demands US apology

Iran's president has welcomed the possibility of a change in US foreign policy but demanded an apology for past US "crimes" committed against Iran.

Bomb kills 4 Afghan civilians

A roadside bomb struck a vehicle carrying civilians in southern Afghanistan, killing four and wounding nine, police said Wednesday.

Madagascar toll rises to 34 as more demos loom

Madagascar President Marc Ravalomanana accused his main rival yesterday of stoking political unrest in the capital that has claimed at least 34 lives.

Sri Lanka pledges to respect 'safe zone'

Sri Lanka has pledged not to launch attacks inside a "safe zone" set up as a place of refuge for hundreds of thousands of civilians trapped by the fierce fighting between the military and Tamil rebels, the government said yesterday.

Over 3,000 dead from cholera in Zimbabwe

The death toll from the cholera outbreak in Zimbabwe has now passed the 3,000 mark, the UN's World Health Organisation said yesterday.

Response to Indian dossier in 2-3 days: Zardari

President Asif Ali Zardari has said that India will be informed in two to three days about Pakistan's preliminary investigation into the information provided by New Delhi on the Mumbai terrorist attacks.

Threat to Germany at 'new level' after video

A new Internet video from Islamic extremists threatening attacks on Germany -- the second such to appear this month -- represents a "new level" of threat, authorities said yesterday.

Sudan jails one for 'spying' for ICC

A Sudanese man was jailed for 17 years yesterday on charges of trying to help the International Criminal Court investigate a minister suspected of war crimes in Darfur.

Pakistan army chief visits Swat valley

Pakistan army chief General Ashfaq Kayani yesterday visited the northwestern Swat valley where a military operation is under way against religious extremists, security officials said.

Gandhi laid foundation for Obama

Mahatma Gandhi, who was a major inspiration behind American civil rights activist Martin Luther King Junior's movement, laid the foundation of the emergence of a personality like Barack Obama as US President, at least two lawmakers believe.

Arts & Entertainment

MA Rouf Square in Rangamati

The construction of a monument, dedicated to the memory of martyred freedom fighter Birshrestha Munshi Abdur Rouf, has been recently completed. The monument is at Shalbagan, mid-point of Chittagong-Rangamati road, Sapchhari. The monument was formally inaugurated by army chief, General Moeen U Ahmed when the Ranirhat Bridge on the Chittagong-Rangamati road was opened.

Musical programme Amaro Gaitey Ichchey Holo

Musical programme "Amaro Gaitey Ichchey Holo" will be aired on ntv tonight at 6:45 pm. This is the 50th episode of the programme, which is produced by Nazmul Huda Shapla and hosted by Farah Ruma.

Shomudrojol on Banglavision tonight

Banglavision will air the drama serial “Shomudrojol” tonight at 8:25 pm.

Remembering the guru

On the 2nd death anniversary of cultural personality and organiser Waheedul Haque, Chhayanat arranged a memorial programme at its main auditorium on January 27. Apart from Chhayanat, different cultural organisations and well-wishers paid homage to the iconic figure in Bangladeshi cultural arena through rendition of songs and recitation.

Pastoral tunes draw audience at Shilpakala

With an aim to popularise folk songs among city dwellers, Music and Dance department of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) organised a four-day folk song festival, which started on January 26 at the plaza of National Art Gallery, BSA. Prominent and promising folk artistes are performing at the festival everyday, drawing a sizeable, enthusiastic audience at the plaza.

The new face of tourism promotion

When it comes to lending his face to a noble cause, one of Bollywood's most bankable stars, Aamir Khan, is never found wanting.

Acting: A labour of love

Actor Zahid Hossain Shovon's performance in the three running daily soaps “Doll's House”, “Gulshan Avenue” and “Shongsar” have been much lauded. These serials are aired on ATN Bangla, Banglavision and Channel-i respectively.

OP-ED

Can change come to Bangladesh?

Shortly after his arrival in Washington DC, about two weeks prior to his inauguration, Obama visited places in the city that would be home to him and his family for the next four years. Escorted by the Mayor of Washington DC, he went to Ben's Chili Bowl, a place frequented by the locals for hot dogs, burgers, and its famous Chili.

Ending needless tragedy

There can be nothing quite as brutal as when a birth brings death, instead of life. Yet this is exactly what happens across South Asia. Every hour of every day in South Asia, 22 mothers die in child birth -- lives that matter, deaths that matter, leaving orphaned babies who in turn face a much greater risk of death themselves.

Truth in personal ads

Looking over a friend's shoulder recently, I read a personal ad on a Hong Kong dating website: "Tall Guy, Age 36. Are there any nice guys left? After me, I'm not sure."

Star Chittagong

Tourists start flocking to Khagrachhari again

Tourism in Khagrachhari is gaining back its momentum for the last few weeks with the increase of tourists from across the country.

Bird flu scare grips poultry farmers

Fear of avian influenza, better known as bird flu, once again grips the poultry farmers in Chittagong after the highly contagious disease was reported at a poultry farm in coastal Banskhali upazila on January 15.


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