News of: Thursday, 12th of February, 2009
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday told parliament that White Papers should be published on corruption committed during the regimes of the immediate past caretaker government, and the BNP-led alliance government before that.
The Rural Power Company Ltd (RPCL) is faced with the dilemma of respecting a very costly and redundant 15-year power plant service contract with a Dutch company that was signed on the basis of a secret and unsolicited negotiation in 2001.
Seasoned politician Zillur Rahman takes oath of office as the country's new president today on high expectations that he will work to restore dignity and integrity to the top constitutional post, which was mired in controversy by the outgoing president.
Power load-shedding has started to shoot up every day as the weather is becoming warmer --triggering a demand rise against declining gas-fired power generation.
The House yesterday constituted five standing committees, beginning the process of formation of the crucial committees in the current session of parliament.
Procurement of raw materials at a higher price has set the Di-ammonium Phosphate Fertiliser Company Limited (DAPFCL) in Chittagong to count huge loss and deprive the officials and workers of different benefits.
Over a hundred people, including 31 policemen were injured in clashes between garment workers and law enforcers at Sripur in Ashulia yesterday.
With the arrival of thousands of migratory birds in Hakaluki Haor, the biggest wetland in South Asia, poachers have become active and are killing a large number of the species for meat every day.
The government is planning a series of high-level overseas visits in a bid to retain traditional manpower markets, explore new ones and better protect the rights of expatriate Bangladeshis.
Prime Minister (PM) Sheikh Hasina yesterday directed the authorities concerned to recover the water bodies from illegal occupation to remove water stagnancy in the capital and also across the country.
The Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) in a rejoinder on The Daily Star news headlined "Bangla Phone dying in neglect of BTRC" published February 9 differed on a number of points.
The official website of Bangabhaban, the official residence and office of the president, still shows BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia as the country's prime minister although her tenure as premier ended on October 29, 2006.
The government expects to add 741 megawatts (MW) additional power in both private and public sector by June this year to ease the country's ongoing power crisis.
The issues related to Jamaat and controversial leaders of BNP figured prominently at the meeting between BNP central teams and party's grassroots-level leaders that continued for the ninth consecutive day yesterday.
BNP Secretary General Khandaker Delwar Hossain yesterday said the proposed anti-terrorism South Asian taskforce to prevent militancy and terrorism in the region is 'unnecessary' and warned that it would be 'suicidal' for the country.
The Ministry of Religious Affairs has requested the intending hajj pilgrims to collect international passport by May 15, 2009 to perform this year's hajj.
Crisis in gas supply due to deficit production during the dry season has made the life of city residents miserable.
The cabinet yesterday approved the Citizenship (Amendment) Act 2009 with a provision to award citizenship to children of any Bangladeshi woman married to a foreigner.
Two criminals were killed in a gunfight between army men and criminals in a remote hilly area in Ruma upazila yesterday evening.
The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday again adjourned for three weeks the hearing on the government appeal against the High Court (HC) judgment that had declared illegal the 5th amendment of the Constitution endorsing late president Ziaur Rahman's takeover and previous acts from August 15, 1975.
Members of Rapid Action Battalion in separate drives recovered illegal Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) equipment from city's Sugandha Residential Area yesterday night.
A man allegedly strangled his wife to death three days into their married life at Mohammadpur in the city.
The Ekushey Boi Mela, being a gathering of people from all strata of lives, is seen an appropriate venue for the dissemination of information about different social causes.
At least 15 garment workers, mostly women, were injured in a stampede following a fire incident at a factory in city's Mirpur yesterday.
Sri Lanka's military yesterday denied it had shelled a makeshift hospital, killing 16 patients, as concern grew for civilians trapped in fighting between government soldiers and Tamil rebels.
An assault on three government buildings in the Afghan capital of Kabul yesterday has left at least 27 people, including eight attackers, dead.
THE students of polytechnic institutes across the country are agitating fiercely over some new examination rules set by the Technical Education Board. While this should normally have been an academic issue to be resolved within the precincts of the educational arena, it has been dragged on to the streets and spread like something of a bushfire. It raises the question in the public mind as to why the students' outrage assumed such a stupendous proportion, rocking even civic peace.
ONCE again the capital's traffic woes have hit the headlines and the denizens of Dhaka have had to suffer for hours due to the choking congestion. The proximate cause of the appalling jams that clogged up the city's roads on Tuesday were street demonstrations that brought traffic to a halt in many places, but this is only one of the maladies that beset us.
THE opposition has managed to create enough furore on the foreign policy issues articulated by the AL. The debates are a very healthy sign -- diverse opinions and views help inform the public on the take of different parties and groups and the pros and cons of a particular issue. However, some reports and commentaries have managed to confuse, if not downright mislead, the public. Objectivity has been sacrificed to project a particular line of thought; facts have been muddled up, either out of ignorance or as a deliberate attempt to fool. All those who hold the right to know the truth as inalienable and sacred would find this disconcerting.
THE mahajote government has completed a month of its tenure. The national election, no doubt, went smoothly for Sheikh Hasina; but she is facing the challenge now. In forming the cabinet she depended on the young blood in her ranks. It was a big surprise that a band of young ministers, elected for the first time, have been allowed to hold important portfolios. The number of ministers with dubious past has been reduced to a minimum.
IT took the descendants of black slaves 400 years to produce Dr. Martin Luther King. It took John F. Kennedy's intervention and four generations of education to produce his successor, Barack Obama.
The first big match of the Premier Division Cricket League turned into a big disappointment when star-studded Gazi Tank thrashed defending champions Abahani by six wickets in a low-scoring match at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur yesterday.
Alamu Bukola slammed his second hattrick of the league as Mohammedan Sporting Club brightened their chances of finishing runners-up in the Citycell B. League with an emphatic 4-0 win over Khulna Abahani in their second leg tie at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.
Brazil forward Robinho shattered Italy coach Marcello Lippi's record bid with a breathtaking display in his side's 2-0 friendly win over the world champions here on Tuesday.
The second leg of the Grameenphone Tri-Nation Women's Cricket Tournament starts at the Shaheed Flight Lieutenant Motiur Rahman Stadium in Khulna today with Pakistan aiming to turn the table on Sri Lanka.
Pakistan fast bowler Mohammad Asif was on Wednesday slapped with a one-year ban from the Indian Premier League (IPL) for failing a dope test during last year's inaugural tournament.
Mahela Jayawardene on Wednesday decided to step down as Sri Lanka's cricket captain after the upcoming Tests in Pakistan, saying he was doing it "in the best interests" of the team.
BKSP notched their second consecutive win beating Swadheenata KS by a solitary goal in a Citycell 3rd Division Football League match at the Birshreshtha Shaheed Sepoy Mohammad Mostafa Stadium in Kamalapur yesterday.
Kalabagan thrashed Badda by 134 runs yesterday at the City Club Ground in a Dhaka First Division Cricket League match.
A few years ago when Brian Lara ruled the world of batting, West Indies were accused of being a one-man show and now Kevin Pietersen has done the same for England.
Andrew Flintoff believes England have the character to rebound in the second Test against West Indies at the Vivian Richards Cricket Ground, starting on Friday.
Pakistan cricket authorities Wednesday said they would respect a court decision suspending a ban on players who featured in the unofficial Indian Cricket League (ICL), paving the way for their return to domestic matches.
Ashwell Prince has been left out of the first two Tests against Australia at home, as South Africa picked the 11 who played the three Tests in Australia recently, as well as left-arm swing bowler Lonwabo Tsotsobe. Tsotsobe is the 12th player in the squad for the Johannesburg and Durban Tests, while Prince, Robin Peterson and Monde Zondeki have been dropped.
Sri Lanka were fined for slow over-rate, two overs short of their target, during their three-wicket loss to India in the one-off Twenty20 International in Colombo on Tuesday.
Moises Henriques, the New South Wales all-rounder, has won a surprise call-up into Australia's Twenty20 squad for the match against New Zealand in Sydney on Sunday. David Warner has also been recalled to a side that will be led by Michael Clarke with Ricky Ponting to take a rest after he talked the selectors out of an extended break during the Chappell-Hadlee Series.
Police have made eight arrests in connection with the party that led to publication of a photograph of Beijing Olympic hero Michael Phelps, television station WIS reported Tuesday.
Chelsea have appointed Russia manager Guus Hiddink as their temporary coach until the end of the season, the Premier League club announced here Wednesday.
Brazil coach Dunga insisted his war of words with Italy's Marcello Lippi and Gianluca Zambrotta won't take the gloss off his side's impressive 2-0 win over the world champions.
Japan and Australia shared the spoils in Asian World Cup qualifying on Wednesday but there was a crucial win for North Korea, who beat Saudi Arabia to leave Nasser Al Johar's side in serious trouble.
Chelsea captain John Terry has dropped a strong hint that a revolt by some of the club's players triggered the dismissal of Luiz Felipe Scolari.
The Confederation of African Football (CAF) picked Togo international Emmanuel Adebayor as the continent's best player for 2008 at an elaborate awards ceremony here Tuesday night.
Dutch international midfielder Rafael van der Vaart says he hopes to play for Real Madrid for several more years despite being relegated to the substitutes bench in recent matches.
Real Madrid will borrow 70 million euros (90 million dollars) from Spain's largest bank Santander to help finance the purchase of Portuguese winger Cristiano Ronaldo from Manchester United, Spanish radio said Wednesday.
Newcastle United manager Joe Kinnear is set to undergo a heart operation that could sideline him for two months, according to a report in Britain's Sun tabloid here on Wednesday.
Birmingham City signed Djimi Traore on Tuesday from Premier League strugglers Portsmouth on a three-month emergency loan deal.
FIFA's International Board, world football's rule-making body, is to study proposals to increase substitutes to four should extra time be needed and for the interval to be increased to 20 minutes.
US midfielder Bobby Convey, who spent the past four seasons with English side Reading, signed Tuesday with the San Jose Earthquakes of Major League Soccer.
Bayern Munich midfielder Franck Ribery said Wednesday he wants to see out his contract with the German giants, which finishes in 2011, despite interest from several top European sides.
Stocks plummeted to the lowest yesterday in nearly one and a half years, triggered by panic sell-offs in almost all sectors led by banks, a lifeline to the market.
Leading mobile phone operator Grameenphone's (GP) net profit jumped by 68 percent to Tk 320 crore by the end of 2008 compared to Tk 130 crore a year ago, mainly due to a decline in customer acquisition costs.
In a bid to increase remittance inflow through legal channels, Bangladesh Bank (BB) is going to divide the countries across the world into five zones and introduce reward worth Tk 30 lakh to a remitter from each zone.
India's government announced Wednesday plans to inject nearly 800 million dollars into three state-run banks to spur lending and give a boost to the country's slowing economy.
The government will not anymore allow any developed country to dump their products into Bangladesh as local industries are going to get in the coming budget all they need to grow.
Saarc countries have agreed to work on further liberalising their markets among themselves in a bid to cope with the global economic downturn.
Finance ministers and central bank chiefs of the Group of Seven major economies plan to voice strong opposition to protectionism at their upcoming meeting in Rome, according to the agenda of the G-7 talks The Yomiuri Shimbun obtained Tuesday.
Grameenphone launched a special internet package for its customers yesterday.
A soaring loan default in some economic sectors has raised questions over the severity of the impact of the global economic crisis on Indonesia.
In a bid to cut housing pressure on Dhaka, the government should earmark some areas and develop lands around the capital to build satellite townships, says the chief of a real estate giant.
Financial markets recoiled on Wednesday after US economic rescue moves left investors bewildered and sceptical, and data revealed plunging demand for steel, cars, and oil in the global crisis.
World stock markets dropped Wednesday, following a steep sell-off on Wall Street, as investors reacted with scepticism to the US government's latest plan to rescue the ailing financial industry with as much as $2 trillion in funding.
Oil prices crept above $38 a barrel Wednesday in Asia as a new U.S. bank rescue plan failed to convince investors in crude and equities that the government can revive an ailing financial system.
The election to the executive council of Rajshahi Chamber of Commerce and Industries (RCCI) has been postponed as per a commerce ministry directive after a probe found valid the allegations of 'registration of fake voters'.
Official data is likely to show that the French economy contracted by 1.2 percent in the last quarter of 2008, Finance Minister Christine Lagarde said on Wednesday.
Taiwan's "Silicon Valley" was hit hard last year as combined sales from its technology companies plunged 12 percent, industry authorities said Wednesday.
German bank Hypo Real Estate said on Wednesday that it has received new state-backed guarantees worth 10 billion euros (12.9 billion dollars).
Though Vietnam's economy had remained stable even amidst the current global economic crisis, it was beginning to show signs of decline, resolutions of a government meeting said.
French food giant Danone reported on Wednesday that net profit last year crashed by 68.5 percent to 1.3 billion euros (1.7 billion dollars) despite an 8.4-percent rise in sales, because exceptional gains in 2007 skewed comparison.
Belgium faces "a serious recession" this year, central bank governor Guy Quaden said Wednesday after most economic indicators, apart from inflation, slumped in 2008.
General Motors Corp is planning to slash another 10,000 salaried jobs this year, saying the cuts are unavoidable with a government restructuring deadline looming and industrywide sales in one of the worst downturns in history.
Nike said Tuesday it could cut up to 1,400 jobs from its global workforce to help the giant maker of athletic footwear and apparel cope with a sharp global economic downturn.
Speakers at a dialogue yesterday emphasised the importance of implementing a unified primary education system in the country.
Bangladesh Nari Pragati Sangha yesterday demanded the government investigate plagiarism of the manuscript of 'Muktijuddho O Nari' (Women and the Liberation War) from the ministry of liberation war affairs.
Dhaka University Journalists' Association (Duja) yesterday awarded three journalists Shaheed Sangbadik Chishti Shah Helalur Rahman Award for their best reporting on the Dhaka University.
Hearing on pending High Court (HC) rules on the proceedings of the Niko and barge-mounted power plant corruption cases filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) against Prime Minister and Awami League President Sheikh Hasina and others is due to be held on February 15.
The High Court (HC) yesterday declared illegal the actions of Biman Bangladesh Airlines authorities giving forced retirement to seven senior officials including its chief engineer Fakhrul Alam Bhuiyan.
The family of cadet Sharmila Shaharin Pollen, allegedly murdered at Mymensingh Girls Cadet College in 2005, has again demanded justice.
Lack of awareness about antenatal, delivery and postnatal care is the predominant factor that puts the lives of mothers and babies at risk, according to a recent survey.
Rights activists at a press conference yesterday demanded the government ensure birth registration for every child in the country free of cost to safeguard their rights.
Hazrat Shah Syed Ahmedur Rahim Baqi has been installed as the 'Sazzadanshin Pir' of Mia Saheber Maidan Khanka Sharif at Laxmi Bazar in the city recently, says a press release.
Different socio-political organisations yesterday congratulated veteran Awami League leader Zillur Rahman on his being the next president of the country.
Language movement veteran Gaziul Haque was admitted to Square Hospital in the city yesterday morning as his condition deteriorated.
Candidates, who were unsuccessful as per the second results of 27th BCS Examination, yesterday demanded stern actions against the PSC chairman in accordance with the relevant laws.
A huge amount of garment jhut (by-product) was gutted and some ready products damaged in a fire at a garment factory at Dewanhat intersection in the port city yesterday evening.
The eighth death anniversary of Tawfiq Aziz Khan, an eminent journalist, sports writer and commentator, was observed yesterday.
Mir Mostafiz Ahmed and Abul Kalam Azad have been elected president and general secretary of Dhaka Sub-editors' Council (DSEC).
About 5000 telephones of different areas in the city and Tongi are remained out of order since Tuesday night as thieves took away cables, says a press release.
Five people were killed and 43 others injured in separate road accidents in Faridpur, Jessore and Bagerhat yesterday.
Pallabi police recovered body of an unidentified burglar aged about 25 at Eastern housing project in Rupnagar in the city early yesterday.
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has expressed grave concern at the violation of human rights by the authorities of Tex Tech Company Ltd, a garment factory at Banani, as they sent out the female workers barefoot during the lunch break.
BNP lawmaker Salauddin Quader Chowdhury yesterday called on the government to read the constitution before initiating the trial of war criminals.
The High Court (HC) yesterday declared illegal the actions of Biman Bangladesh Airlines authorities giving forced retirement to seven senior officials, including its chief engineer Fakhrul Alam Bhuiyan.
An international Urs (religious conference) of Hazrat Shah Sufi Khaja Baba Foridpuri will be held on February 14, 15, 16 and 17 at Bishwa Zaker Manzil in Faridpur, says a press release.
Thousands of commuters cross the age-old Teesta Bridge everyday risking lives as the leaseholder turns it vulnerable to collapse any time by illegally allowing heavy vehicles for 'extra money'.
Joint forces have launched a special operation to destroy poppy fields in the areas near the border with Myanmar.
Angry people put up a barricade on the Rajshahi-Chapainawabganj highway snapping road communication for about an hour on Tuesday night.
Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) Rajshahi University unit yesterday demanded investigation into alleged corruption, nepotism and politicisation of administration by former vice-chancellor Prof Altaf Hossain, former pro-vice-chancellor Prof Mamnunul Keramat and former proctor Prof Enamul Haque .
Boro cultivation is facing setback due to erratic power supply in the district.
Body of a youth, who went missing on January 19, was found on a Boro field at Roshunpur village under Ranishankoil upazila on Tesday night.
At least eight cattle including milch cows died and 30 others were attacked with Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD), a viral disease of cattle that broke out in an alarming form in Jhhowdanga, Tujalpur and Rajbari areas in Sadar upazila last week.
The Taliban have become a threat for Pakistan Army like Mukti Bahini fighters were during the 1971 liberation war of Bangladesh.
A bomb killed a secular lawmaker and wounded six other people yesterday in a Pakistani city close to the Afghan border increasingly under attack by Islamist militants.
Australian police investigated fresh arson attacks and looting yesterday as angry survivors pressed for access to towns devastated by wildfires that continue to burn across vast areas.
Iran yesterday reiterated its desire for talks with the new administration of US President Barack Obama as both sides show tentative signs of shifting policy after three decades of severed ties.
Inconclusive election results sent Israel into political limbo yesterday with both Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni and hard-line leader Benjamin Netanyahu claiming victory and leaving the kingmaker role to a rising political hawk with an anti-Arab platform.
Pakistani troops killed seven Taliban militants and destroyed 25 hideouts in a troubled northwest tribal area near the Afghan border yesterday, a security official said.
Exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama warned yesterday that the situation in his homeland was "very tense" and that an uprising was possible.
China has sentenced 76 people and detained more than 950 since last year's deadly anti-government riots in Tibet, state media said yesterday.
North Korea has been moving missile equipment to a launch pad, an indication that the country is taking steps toward conducting a test launch, a news report said yesterday.
Five members of Iraq's security forces and a Shiite pilgrim were killed in attacks around the country yesterday, including a suicide car bombing in the city of Mosul, security officials said.
At least 15 people were killed when a massive tornado ripped across the Midwestern state of Oklahoma, local media reported yesterday.
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said Tuesday his envoy to Myanmar had good talks in the military-ruled Southeast Asian country, and the world body's chief again urged the government and opposition to quickly resume talks.
The commander of Azerbaijan's air force has been shot dead outside his house in the capital, Baku, officials have said yesterday.
Arts & Entertainment
The two-week-long Ekushey book fair began on February 1 at the Pabna Town Hall premises. The organiser of the well attended event is the Ekushey Book Fair Celebration Committed, Pabna. Discussions and cultural programmes are the daily features of the fair. Meanwhile 25 new books were launched at the function.
Noted Indian classical vocalists of the "Dagarvani Dhrupad Gharana," the Dagar Brothers -- Aneesuddin Dagar and Nafeesuddin Dagar -- performed at a Dhrupad recital at the National Theatre Stage, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy on February 10. Jointly organised by the High Commission of India and Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), the evening was crowned with a turnout of several eminent personalities including diplomats, intellectuals and artistes.
Indian photographer Parthiv Shah's exhibition, featuring images of celebrated and controversial artist M.F. Husain, was on at National Art Gallery, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy recently. The exhibition was a part of the ongoing Chobi Mela V. Titled "Artist in Exile," the exhibit zoomed in on the hiatus of M.F. Husain from the Indian art scene.
Nrityanchal, a leading dance troupe of the country, is organising a recital, titled "Kathak Sandhya" on February 13 at the National Theatre Stage, BSA. Over 250 dance artistes, aged between four and thirty, will participate at the event. Noted dance artiste Shibli Mohammad is directing the dance recital.
To mark the birth anniversary of eminent painter and educationist, late Professor Shahtab a discussion and cultural function were held at Shyamganj Railway grounds on February 7. The Shyamganj Public Library and Aamra Surjomukhi were the organisers of the function.
TV serial "Alta Sundari" will be aired tonight on Rtv at 9 pm. Written by Brindaban Das, the serial is directed by Salahuddin Lavlu.
A German-made drama about the inconclusive trial of a fictional Serb war criminal may help keep the judicial spotlight on the 1992-95 war in Bosnia, its director Hans-Christian Schmid.
Nakshi Katha, a leading clothing business of the town arranged its annual cultural programme at Kobi Jasimuddin Hall recently.
IN January, one bizarrely pleasant news was that Biman had managed to post a profit of Tk.19 crores for the fiscal year 2007-2008. Over the years, we had believed that "Biman" and "profit" could not go together in the same sentence, to ensure which we had very diligent people, from minister to briefcase-businessmen to clerical staff, employed at the airline!
ON December 27, 2007, the writer sneaked into the Mirpur stadium to watch the second day of the first test between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. I have to admit, the sole reason for my foray into a test cricket venue was to watch the world's greatest wicket taker, Muttiah Muralitharan of Sri Lanka, bowl.
GURU Rabidas was born in village Gobardhanpur near Varanasi in the state of Uttar Pradesh, India, on a Magh fullmoon (February 9-10, 1376 CE), to cobber parents -- Raghuram and Raghurani.
WARNING: the information in this column is top secret. Only men should read it. There have been a series of high society weddings in Asia recently so I hereby reveal how Asian fathers get their sons married off.
Power generation has come to a minimum level, resulting in serious loadshedding even in the winter here for lack of sufficient gas and fall in water level in the Kaptai Lake.
A number of bakeries and eateries in the port city have finally reduced prices of their items because of fall in prices of different raw materials and commodity items.
During springtime you are probably the most adventurous with your ensembles. The mood is cheerful with a myriad of blooming flowers. There is music in the air with the birds chirping and singing, and you simply take it all in and begin anew, completely energised. The pleasure of spring gives you the option to layer your clothes up or down as you drape one or more pieces to give an elegant spin. It is clearly a moment to celebrate life and its festivity. Enjoy every moment and embrace natures' offerings with renewed zest.
The melody of spring is full of life. Spring is not just about flowers blooming, butterflies and rain showers, it's about the vivacious theme of life after the dead winter. It's a time of new beginnings- of hope and of fresh starts, joy and happiness, peace and contentment. So shake winter off and catch the essence of spring.
Their creations have always been, without hesitation, something to look forward to. This fall, their emphasis has been on the upcoming Eid and the wedding flavour. Classic saris remain the 'little black dress' of our Bengali festive custom.
It is an art to mix and match clothes. This way your wardrobe is versatile. You can wear one particular piece in a number of different ways. This is probably a good way to build your collection always keeping to a plan. Accessories are a great way to augment up or down an ensemble. It can easily add to a piece, especially if it is a simple one. In a more elaborate piece, stick to simple accessories as it can easily take away interest from the main outfit.