The Daily Star

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Saturday, August 2, 2014


News of: Monday, 9th of March, 2009

Front Page

100 JS reserved seats pledged for women

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said the number of reserved seats for women in parliament would be 100 from 45 at present, with provision of direct voting.

Talks seek to get BDR back on tracks

The first coordination meeting of remaining BDR officers with the newly appointed director general after the February 25-26 carnage yesterday emphasised re-stabilising the paramilitary force, say meeting sources.

2 FBI men in city

A two-member team of the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) arrived in Dhaka yesterday afternoon from New Delhi to help Bangladesh probe the carnage at the Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) headquarters.

Admin thrown in a spin

Activities of Bangladesh Secretariat have almost come to a standstill due to uncertainty created by random changes of officials and lack of assertiveness and commanding skills of most of the ministers.

Desperate bid for judicial power

Executive magistrates, cadres of the admin service, are pressing hard for getting back the power to take cognisance of offences for trial.

PM hands Tk 2 lakh to each family

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday handed over the cheques for Tk 2 lakh each to the families of three civilian victims killed during the February 25 BDR mutiny.

The future that never came

When people move from one situation in life to a better one, they start dreaming of a future they didn't dare look forward to before.

Sobhan new home secy

Important changes were brought in the top-level government administration yesterday that include transfer of Home Secretary Abdul Karim to Bridge Division of the communications ministry.

Top intelligence men partners in crime

The then high officials of two top intelligence agencies had knowledge of transporting the 10 truckloads of arms and ammunition, Hafizur Rahman, the main accused in the case, told the court last week.

Exporters to get recession package

The government will announce a combined incentive package within a month for different industries including readymade garments to stave off the fallout of the global recession.

DSE's new policy to prevent GP from listing

The Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) yesterday decided not to list any securities with a face value of Tk 1, a decision that will prevent Grameenphone's listing with the stock exchange.

It all started from Bangkok

The plan to transport the huge cache of sophisticated arms and ammunition, seized at Chittagong Urea Fertiliser Factory jetty on April 2 2004, was made at Bankapi Royal Rose Hotel in Bangkok.

2 new judges take oath

The two newly appointed judges of the Supreme Court (SC) Appellate Division Justice Shah Abu Nayeem Mominur Rahman and Justice Md Abdul Aziz took oath in a ceremony at SC Judges' lounge at 10:30am yesterday.

Moudud gets BNP ticket

BNP has replaced its nominee for Bogra-7 (Gabtoli-Shahjahanpur) constituency with BNP standing committee member Moudud Ahmed for the upcoming by-polls.

Mysterious death of 4 of a family

Four members of a family died mysteriously at Fulkarchar village in Islampur upazila of the district early yesterday.

Ancelotti plays the big man

AC Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti refused to rise to Jose Mourinho's bait when asked about the Inter Milan boss's claims that the 'rossonero' would win nothing this season.

Try culprits, plotters of BDR massacre

Leader of the Opposition Khaleda Zia last night asked the government to keep politics out of the BDR mutiny investigation process and find out the real criminals, plotters and instigators.

Ensure smooth power supply for irrigation

A parliamentary body yesterday asked the power, energy and mineral resources ministry to ensure uninterrupted supply of electricity for irrigation, which is being hampered due to acute power crisis.

CUFL officials to be grilled today

Investigators today begin questioning those responsible for checking offloading from boats at Chittagong Urea Fertiliser Limited (CUFL) jetty in the early hours of April 2, 2004, when the consignment of deadly weapons and ammunition was seized at the jetty.

Wasa asked to resolve water crisis

State Minister for LGRD and Cooperatives Jahangir Kabir Nanak yesterday directed high officials of Dhaka Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (Wasa) to have more field visits to problem areas to end the city's existing water crisis.

Production resumes at Barapukuria coal mine

Coal production resumed at Barapukuria coalmine Saturday midnight without digging the boreholes as Bangladeshi miners agreed to join work.

100 killed in SL

Fierce fighting between Sri Lankan troops and ethnic Tamil separatists defending their last remaining enclave has left about 100 rebels dead in two days of fighting, the military said Sunday.

Interpol finds links of 7 countries

Interpol Secretary General Ronald K Noble has said that links of seven different countries are found in the Mumbai terror attacks that killed more than 170 people.

YouTube blocked

Bangladesh has blocked the video sharing website YouTube for hosting a recorded conversation between its prime minister and army officers, officials said in Dhaka yesterday.

Recession weighs in

As the global financial meltdown has bitten the economies at every corner, Bangladesh is poised to feel the pinch.

Sharif vows end to 'politics of hypocrisy, fraud'

Former Pakistan Prime Minister and Pakistan Muslim League-N (PML-N) Chief Nawaz Sharif on Saturday said that he would not sit in rest until he roots out the "politics of hypocrisy and fraud".

Iraq suicide bomber kills 28 at Baghdad police academy

A suicide bomber on a bicycle blew himself up killing at least 28 people and wounding 58 more outside a police academy in the Iraqi capital yesterday in the bloodiest attack in weeks, officials said.

Editorial

Prime Minister's call to Leader of the Opposition

PRIME Minister Sheikh Hasina's call to Leader of the Opposition Khaleda Zia makes sense. It was rather surprising for the nation to know from Begum Zia the other day that the killers of the BDR officers were foreign spies and hired from outside. Sheikh Hasina has responded by asking Begum Zia that if she has any evidence to back up her point of view she should provide it to the probe bodies now at work on the BDR tragedy. There can be no denying that the killing of the army officers on February 25 has left the nation traumatised and we will all remain in the dark for as long as we are unable to delve into the roots of the conspiracy behind it. The country now expects Begum Zia to respond to the Prime Minister's request and come forward in aiding the process of investigation in any way she can.

Water crisis

WATER supply situation in the metropolis is beginning to look serious with the advent of summer. Already we have seen angry demonstrations and blocking of roads by disgruntled residents in Mirpur area where water supply has dwindled sharply since February. Similar stories concerning shortage of water in other areas are also being reported in the media. With hot summer days ahead, when demand for water will rise further, it is likely that Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (WASA) might be in for similar demonstrations if the supply situation is not improved soon enough. Although the crisis is seasonal, we seldom plan for it.

Justice with due process

NEVER did we think that we would be haunted with mass graves in independent Bangladesh. Never did we think that we would have to unearth mutilated, bayonet-torn dead bodies. And yet, today, we are assaulted once again by mass graves and the cold-blooded murder of our army officers, their families, and civilians.

Test of statesmanship

THE bloody mutiny by a section of BDR soldiers, brutally killing more than 75 people including 58 army officers, put Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to a grim test of statesmanship. She has not failed, but has rather shown wisdom, courage and tolerance, which are needed in tackling such critical situations in very trying times.

Sports

Russel, Ctg Abahani to correct mistakes

Foreign imports will have to shoulder Sheikh Russel's workload if Wajed Gazi's boys want to turn men in this week's mega tournament Super Cup.

Masterful Sachin

An unbeaten 163 by Sachin Tendulkar led India to a comprehensive 58-run win over New Zealand in the third one-day international here Sunday and ensured they cannot lose the series.

Hughes hits second ton

Phil Hughes became the youngest player in Test history to hit two centuries in a match as Australia pressed home their advantage on the third day of the second Test against South Africa at Kingsmead here on Sunday.

Prior, Collingwood shine

Monty Panesar gave England a much-needed breakthrough in their bid for a series-levelling win over West Indies, after Paul Collingwood and Matt Prior hit hundreds to bat them into a formidable position in the fifth and final Test on Saturday.

Barca gain edge again

Real Madrid's run of wins came to an end on Saturday when they were held to a 1-1 draw at the Santiago Bernabeu by city rivals Atletico, allowing Barcelona to extend their lead at the top to six points.

Inter click into gear

Inter Milan clicked ominously into gear ahead of their Champions League trip to Manchester United with an impressive 2-0 victory at Genoa on Saturday.

'Dream' deal done

David Beckham on Sunday confirmed a deal has been agreed between AC Milan and Los Angeles Galaxy that enables him to stay in Italy until the end of the season.

Hertha go four clear

Andrei Voronin's hattrick for Hertha Berlin in a 3-1 victory at Energie Cottbus shot them four points clear in the German League while Bayern Munich cruised up to joint second following a five-goal spree.

Tevez propels Man Utd

Manchester United's imperious march towards five trophies in a season continued here Saturday as Carlos Tevez scored twice in a 4-0 win over Fulham that saw his side into the FA Cup semifinals.

Kiwis stun holders

World Cup favourites Australia suffered a miserable start to their 2009 campaign when they were beaten by New Zealand in Sydney.

Momentum with a magical touch

It generally comes with a stroll of a single to a safe area, say long-on or deep fine-leg. By the time Sachin Tendulkar reaches the non-striker's end, the crowd goes delirious. The helmet comes off, the head tilts up skywards, the back arches a little, the head comes down and looks at the crowd and team-mates in acknowledgment, the fists are pumped, bat in one hand and helmet in the other, and then the head tilts up again. And lo, Tendulkar has reached another hundred. His is a smooth, well-oiled, economical, calculated celebration. The same can easily be said of his centuries. Not the ones Tendulkar the wunderkind used to score, but the ones the master assessor does.

Another draw for Arambagh

Arambagh pulled off another draw in the Prime Minister Cup football tournament when they held Pakistan national team 1-1 in their second match in Kathmandu yesterday.

Kalabagan win a thriller

Kalabagan defeated Dhanmondi by one wicket in a nail biting finish in the First Division Cricket League at the Dhanmondi Cricket Stadium yesterday.

Local Snippets

Bangladesh Police recorded a straight 3-0 win over Wari Club in the National Bank Premier Division Volleyball League at the volleyball stadium yesterday.

Forget draw, focus on L'pool

Real Madrid defender Fabio Cannavaro has urged his teammates not to dwell on Saturday's disappointing draw against arch rivals Atletico and focus their efforts on Tuesday's crucial Champions League clash against Liverpool.

Benzema doubt for Barca

Lyon's French international striker Karim Benzema is a doubt for Wednesday's Champions League clash at Barcelona after suffering a hip injury.

Rio headache for Red Devils

Sir Alex Ferguson faces an anxious wait on the fitness of Rio Ferdinand ahead of Manchester United's Champions League clash with Inter Milan on Wednesday.

Sachin should play 2011 WC: Ganguly

Master batsman Sachin Tendulkar, despite being dogged by injuries, should play in the 2011 World Cup, feels former India skipper Sourav Ganguly.

Super Cup plans to attract fans

A caravan will tour the city today as part of the organiser's campaign plan to attract fans to the Super Cup, which begins in Dhaka on March 11.

Army cruise in to final

Bangladesh Army blanked Bangladesh Navy 4-0 to reach the final of the Need for Speed Shaheed Smriti Hockey tournament at the Maulana Bhasani National Hockey Stadium yesterday.

Business

Realising the revenue income

Realising the revenue income target may be a big challenge before the government due to the impact of the global economic crisis and the government's earlier fiscal policy may need a major shake-up.

73 lakh new job creation now a major

Generation of additional 73 lakh new jobs by 2011, including a backlog of 18 lakh unemployed labour, is a major challenge for Bangladesh economy, according to a central bank study.

Shore up social safety net to face recession: WB

Visiting World Bank Vice-president for South Asia Isabel Guerrero yesterday stressed the need to strengthen the social safety net programme to face fallout from the global recession, which forced many people out of jobs and cars into garage in the developed world.

BGMEA demands smooth power supply to Ctg RMG

Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers' and Exporters Association (BGMEA) submitted a memorandum to the chief engineer of Power Development Board, Chittagong demanding an end to the severe load-shedding to the garment industries in the port city.

International tourism fair starts Thursday

The Bangladesh Monitor is set to organise a three-day international tourism fair, Dhaka Travel Mart (DTM) 2009, from March 12 at Dhaka Sheraton Hotel, the travel magazine announced yesterday.

White House announces 3 Treasury picks

President Barack Obama on Sunday announced his picks for three top Treasury Department posts to fill out the thin ranks under embattled Secretary Timothy Geithner at a time of economic crisis.

Swiss GDP to fall more than expected

Switzerland's gross domestic product is likely to shrink more than expected, the head of Switzerland's state secretariat for economics affairs said in remarks published Sunday.

Vedanta buys Asarco for $1.7b

British metals giant Vedanta announced Saturday it would buy bankrupt US copper miner Asarco for 1.7 billion dollars -- far below the sum it first bid when commodity prices were booming.

Seventh training course on public procurement begins

The seventh three-week training course on public procurement of goods, works and services, organised by the Central Procurement Technical Unit (CPTU), IMED of the Ministry of Planning, began at the Engineering Staff College Bangladesh (ESCB) at Bausia in Munshiganj district yesterday.

Global slowdown hurts Vietnam's poorest

Selling corn on a pavement in Vietnam's Ho Chi Minh City may be a world away from Wall Street or London's Square Mile, but Le Thi Hoa says she too has been hit by the economic slowdown.

Pacific Jeans awarded on world stage

Pacific Jeans Limited has been awarded the best company for product development and innovation by C&A, a leading apparel retailer in Europe, says a press release.

Remittance drop to hurt real estate

Realtors feared the global recession might undermine the real estate sector's prospective growth unless special initiatives are taken, although the sector began to expand after a two-year sluggish trend when its growth slowed to 7.05 percent in 2006-07 from 8.31 percent a year earlier.

Asia must spend more to limit economic slide

Asian governments need to roll out fresh stimulus measures to stop their economies from sinking further as the region reels from collapsing exports, regional analysts said.

Asian currencies mostly weaker

Asian currencies were mostly down against the dollar during the week, as lingering concerns about the effect of the global recession on the region spooked investors.

European tax haven ministers meet in Luxembourg

Switzerland, Luxembourg and Austria meet Sunday to prepare their defence against a growing international onslaught on tax havens.

Malaysia to unveil new economic stimulus plan

Malaysia will this week unveil a second stimulus plan worth up to 9.4 billion dollars in a bid to prevent its export-driven economy sliding into recession, a government official said.

Iran inflation hits 25.9pc

Inflation, one of the biggest challenges facing oil-rich Iran, hit 25.9 percent in February, local news agencies reported on Sunday, quoting official figures.

German car scrapping bonus revs up

A German bonus for scrapping old cars to boost the auto market has lit a fire under domestic sales, with just a few voices dissenting amid general acclaim for the result.

Into The Crisis

The global recession slows Asia's export engine and remittance flow. In Bangladesh as well, there are clear signs of falling exports and remittances. Analysts recommend a drive to create domestic demand and quick actions from the government to ride out fallout from the crisis. Star Business has spotlighted the effects of financial meltdown on our economy. Today's three stories, including the one on B4, cap a series of six.

Metropolitan

Vow to work together to build violence-free society

Not only women, but also men in large number joined the International Women's Day celebrations across the country yesterday to express solidarity with women and vowed to work together to build a society free from violence and repression.

Army captain's death in hotel still shrouded in mystery

Mystery behind the death of army captain SM Rajibul Huq Himel, whose body was recovered from the city's Razmoni Isa Khan Hotel on Saturday, is yet to be unearthed.

Two killed in road accidents

Two people were killed and three others injured in separate road accidents in Chittagong and Jhenidah in the last two days.

'Recycle waste into resources thru' proper management'

The 3rd Bangladesh Solid Waste Management Conference began in the port city yesterday with a call to raise public awareness and develop capacity to deliver improved service and help keep the cities clean.

Cherie Blair joins AUW as patron

Cherie Booth Blair, QC, a prominent international human rights advocate, lawyer and wife of former British prime minister Tony Blair, has written to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to congratulate her on her recent landslide victory in the parliamentary elections, says a press release.

HC asks govt to allow Jamaat leader Razzaq to go abroad

The High Court (HC) yesterday directed the government to allow Jamaat-e-Islami Assistant Secretary General Barrister Abdur Razzaq to go to Malaysia to visit his daughter there and to return home.

Bid to attack Nurul Kabir's car condemned

Twenty eminent citizens yesterday expressed grave concern over the attempt of attack on the car of the New Age Editor Nurul Kabir by unknown armed motorbike riders on Thursday.

Separate CID team to check call records of BDR suspects

Criminal Investigation Department (CID) has formed a separate team to check up the call records of suspected BDR members in connection with the carnage at BDR headquarters on February 25-26.

Rights issues for women with disabilities absent in law

Speakers at a discussion on the occasion of the International Women's Day said the rights issues of the women with disabilities are absent in both the Bangladesh Disability Welfare Act 2001 and the National Policy for People with Disabilities 1995.

Scout movement to help build happy, prosperous Bangladesh

President Zillur Rahman yesterday hoped that the scout movement would act as a supplementary force in achieving the 'Vision-2021' to build a happy and prosperous Bangladesh.

Meet ends without decision

The Strategy and Action Plan Committee on Climate Change held a meeting yesterday to review the 'Climate Change Strategy and Action Plan 2008' but could not decide whether it needs any changes.

Australian help to reintegrate acid survivors into society

Australian High Commi-ssioner Dr Justin Lee and his spouse Jeane Lona yesterday visited Acid Survivors' Foundation (ASF) Hospital in the city and handed over a cheque for Tk 3.2 million to help acid survivors reintegrate into society and achieve economic independence, says a press release.

Projection of Bangladeshi art, culture in UAE

Bangladesh embassy along with other Saarc embassies in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) organised the first-ever 'Saarc Film Festival' in Abu Dhabi on March 7, says a press release.

Gender and development book fair begins

A gender and development book fair began at Shilpakala Academy in the city yesterday on the occasion of the International Women's Day.

Youth burnt alive in Ctg fire

A youth was burnt alive and another aged man sustained burn injuries in a fire in the port city's Maddhyam Mohora area at Kalurghat early yesterday.

Two DAGs terminated

Two deputy attorneys general (DAGs) appointed by the previous BNP-Jamaat coalition government and immediate past caretaker government were terminated from their services.

Sylhet transport workers withdraw strike

Transport owners and workers withdrew their strike on Sylhet-Sunamganj road yesterday after a discussion with district officials and mayor in Sylhet.

Dhaka Ainjibi Samity executives

Md Mokhlesur Rahman and Gazi Md Shah Alam were elected president and general secretary of the executive committee of Dhaka Ainjibi Samity, says a press release.

Boy rescued after 3 days of abduction

Police yesterday rescued a seven-year-old boy from Char Baliakandi in Narsingdi after three days of his abduction from Duttapara in Tongi.

Letterboxes placed at gates of BDR HQs

The Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) authorities yesterday placed letterboxes at all the gates of BDR headquarters to facilitate communications between BDR members and their family members and relatives.

'Address power crisis immediately'

Leaders of Left Democratic Alliance in a meeting yesterday demanded the government address the power crisis immediately.

WB to help build Padma Bridge

The World Bank (WB) will increase its assistance to Bangladesh and help in the construction of Padma Bridge, which will connect the south-western region directly with the capital and other parts of the country.

BCL men beat JNU reporter

Chhatra League activists at Jagannath University (JNU) yesterday beat up a journalist on the campus severely while he was collecting news about snatching a mobile phone from a student.

US embassy closed tomorrow

The American Embassy, including the Consular Section and the Public Affairs Section with the Archer K Blood American Centre Library and the Student Advising Centre will remain closed tomorrow to observe Eid-e-Miladun Nabi, a Bangladeshi national holiday commemorating the birthday of Prophet Mohammad (SM), says a press release.

Cancer Society executives

Dr Mollah Obaidullah Baki and Dr Ahmed Sayeed were elected president and secretary general of the central executive committee of Bangladesh Cancer Society yesterday for the term 2009-10, says a press release.

HC asks govt to explain

The High Court (HC) yesterday issued a rule upon the government to explain why its failure to appoint Md Abdul Wahab, a former additional HC judge, as a regular judge of the court despite the then Chief Justice's positive recommendation should not be declared illegal.

Hearing resumes today

The High Court (HC) yesterday adjourned until 2:00pm today the hearing on a writ petition challenging the legality of Law Minister Barrister Shafique Ahmed's holding the posts of the minister and of a member of Bangladesh Bar Council at a time.

ECCOWA condoles death of army officers

Ex Cadet College Officers' Welfare Association (ECCOWA) organised a condolence meeting on Saturday in memory of the army officers who were brutally killed in the BDR massacre.

9th convocation of AIUB today

The 9th convocation of American International University-Bangladesh (AIUB) will be held at the Bangladesh-China Friendship Convention Centre in the city today, says a press release.

Van puller stabbed to death

Police recovered the body of a rickshaw-van puller from the city's Agargaon area early yesterday.

BDR mutiny plot to unseat govt: Matia

Agriculture Minister Matia Chowdhury yesterday said the BDR mutiny on February 25 was plotted in a bid to unseat the Awami League (AL)-led grand alliance government.

Correction

The headline of a story on a seminar titled 'Gender sensitive ad making: Our expectations and responsibilities' published on Page 2 in The Daily Star yesterday should read 'Presentation of gender insensitive commercial ads criticised.' We apologise for the inadvertent mistake.

National

Women demand equal rights, end to violence

International Women's Day was observed in districts across the country yesterday with a call to join hands for an end to violence against women and ensure their equal rights in all spheres of life.

Human chains demanding six reserved seats in JS

Physically challenged women yesterday formed human chains in Rajshahi and Rangpur demanding six reserved seats for them in parliament.

Plant clinics make crops healthy, farmers wealthy

Farmers in Shajahanpur upazila in Bogra district are reaping benefit as three plant clinics are prescribing them in black and white treatment of plant disease and steps to control insects.

New IU VC, pro-VC and treasurer appointed

Authorities yesterday appointed vice chancellor, pro-vice chancellor and treasurer for Kushtia Islami University (IU), apparently to put an end to the stalemate that the university had been facing for the last two months.

BDR jawans clash with smugglers

Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) members yesterday opened fire at a gang of smugglers during a clash in Gachhar canal area in Sadar upazila.

Drug peddler dies in Rab custody

A 'drug peddler', arrested by Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) on Saturday night, allegedly committed suicide by hanging from the ceiling while he was under custody, police said.

Two youths murdered in Rangamati

Two youths were murdered and another injured seriously in a gang attack in Karnaphuli Paper Mills (KPM) area in Kaptai upazila headquarters early yesterday.

'Enact laws to ensure rights of CHT women'

Speakers at a discussion marking the International Women's Day yesterday called upon the government to enact laws to ensure equal rights of indigenous women in the hill districts.

18 houses gutted in Ctg

Eighteen dwelling houses were gutted in Bakolia area in Chittagong city yesterday morning.

Letters

Rebuilding Bangladesh

Bangladesh faces many challenges. As a small developing country with a colonial past we have to transform our economy from that of a backward primary producer to an industrial country that fully adds value to our natural and agricultural resources.

Time to deliver

In recent times, the plight of the Rohingays has come to light. They have been subjected to extreme inhuman conditions by the military junta of Burma.

Women commuters

Consciousness among the female population of Bangladesh is increasing day by day. Moreover, the present socio-economic condition demands more and more involvement of women in the productive fields. Nowadays, most of the women in Bangladesh are very serious about their rights, future prospects, career etc.

Let there be light

And yet out of eternity, a thread
Separated itself on the blackness
A horizontal thread
That fumes a little with pallor upon the dark.

T.S. Eliot.

We condemn

We condemn the gruesome killings aimed at destroying our beloved country as an independent nation. We pray to the Almighty Allah for the eternal peace of the departed souls of those military officers. The nation will keep their memories alive forever, not only because they were unjustly killed but also because of the restraint, patriotism, maturity and patience the Bangladesh Army has shown in dealing with the crisis. We all express our heart-felt condolence to the bereaved family members for the sad demise of their beloved and pray to Allah to bless them all with the strength to overcome such irreparable losses. We are saddened, stultified and wordless in the face of such inexplicable act of savagery and demand justice through punishing the culprits and monsters who have stigmatised the history of our nation by killing our unarmed brothers.

February 25 tragedy

The tragedy that struck on Feb 25 is quite horrendous.

Build a monument

Hundred plus officers and soldiers have been murdered in Pilkhana. So many lives have been lost under most tragic circumstances. The conspirators have struck at the very root of national security. The highest level of discipline shown by the armed forces especially the Army is praiseworthy. A national disaster has been averted. We salute the Army for demonstrating the highest level of discipline. It will remain as an example to our future generation.

Party politics and government

I am not a politician and not an expert either on poly-tricks to twist certain things in my favour as many of our politicians do or can do, to their advantage. It will not be out place to quote here the late Bhutto of Pakistan. To a question by some press people quoted as asking Bhutto, "Sir, it is said that you tell a bundle of lies, one thing in the morning and the other, just the opposite in the evening, what is your comment?", he was quoted to have replied "I am a politician and that is a great quality of a good politician."

Anti-terrorism task force

Combating or curbing terrorism is the desire of every peace-loving citizen, no matter where they live. Since terrorism has spread everywhere, beyond all borders and boundaries, it is essential that cooperation among countries is strengthened with a view to making the anti-terrorism drives yield some positive results.

Noise pollution

It has become extremely difficult to sleep in peace or concentrate on study or other work in and around Sector 10 of Uttara, Dhaka. Certain businesses are using loud speakers to advertise their restaurants throughout the day. The noise created by these speakers is resulting in suffering of the people living in this residential area. Surely, the elderly and the sick are suffering the most.

Jagannath University

Jagannath university crisis is now an open secret to all. The demand of students to get back its grabbed dormitories was expressed as they demonstrated it on the university campus on 27 January 2009. A three-hour long clash between the students and the police left at least 100 people injured, more than 20 vehicles were damaged. The university was closed sine die.

Decentralising administration

The new, 'popular' elected political government has some urgent and serious homework for the JS. Discard the “Late Latif” syndrome.

Basic tasks

The 2009 Parliament of Bangladesh is unique in many ways. Among its many uniqueness one that will top the list is its biggest number of fresh and young members. Analysts across the board are full of praise and hope for this new phenomenon. While doing so they are too reluctant even to examine the risks that are associated with inexperience. Such is the predicament of the so-called "brute" majority. People become hesitant to give free flowing opinions.

No room for hypocrisy

The other day I overheard a story which really upset me. A man was going to get married. All was fine. But after the marriage ceremony was over, the bridegroom found the bride to be squint-eyed. The bridegroom's family had gone to the bride's house twice to see the bride. But they didn't find anything wrong with her then. I couldn't find out actually who cheated whom. Marriage is a divine bond between man and woman. But if it starts with such hypocrisy then what will happen in their lives? My honest request to everybody, if you have any disability please inform it to your to-be partner.

Retirement age

I would like to draw the government's kind attention to the news report on the above subject published in the 'Daily Prothom Alo' (page no. 24 & 23, dated 25 December '08) and would like to say for your kind consideration that if the proposal for enhancement of retirement age limit as recommended in the Secretariat meeting is not acceptable due to any obvious reason, the problem in question can be easily solved by an alternative method without creating any further complications. In this regard, it may be mentioned that in accordance with the prevailing rules, the employees being appointed at the age of 18 are getting a total service period of (57-18)=39 years and the employees being appointed at the age of 30 are getting a total service period of (57-30)=27 years. Thus the latecomers in service are being deprived of their required service duration. Similarly, those in the freedom fighters' quota being employed in govt. services at the age of 32 are also deprived and they are being compelled to go on retirement before completion of their children's education. So, to remove this disparity including all dissimilarities as stated in the above recommendation, an alternative rule acceptable to all should be introduced by fixing up the total service period on average basis.

International

Taliban attacks spreading into Pakistani heartland

Last Tuesday's attack on Sri Lankan cricket players heralds the spread of Taliban-trained groups into Pakistani heartlands, feel experts.

Poverty, violence haunt women

Indian activists marked International Women's Day yesterday by protesting over a spate of violent attacks launched on women by religious extremists in the name of "moral policing."

More Kargils if Kashmir remains unresolved

Former Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf, considered the architect of the 1999 Kargil war, has warned that there could be more such conflicts if the “key dispute” and “sore point” Kashmir remains unresolved for long.

Obama offers talks to 'moderate Taliban'

US President Barack Obama said, in an interview published yesterday, that the United States is not winning the war in Afghanistan and hinted at possible talks with moderate elements of the Taliban.

BJD severs alliance with BJP in Orissa

In a major blow to India's main opposition National Democratic Alliance (NDA) ahead of parliamentary elections, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Biju Janata Dal (BJD), a regional outfit, severed their 11-year-old alliance in the eastern state of Orissa after failing to reach an accord on seat sharing.

Pakistan orders judicial probe into attack on Lankan team

Pakistani authorities today ordered a judicial inquiry into the terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team here though there was no official word on when a special police team investigating the incident would submit its preliminary report.

Coalition forces kill 2 Afghan policemen

A joint Afghan-coalition patrol killed two Afghan policemen who opened fire on their team in northeastern Afghanistan, the coalition said in a statement Sunday.

SP-Congress alliance almost over in UP

The BJP is not the only party facing rough weather ahead of the General Elections. The Congress, too, is finding it tough to work out an alliance with the Samajwadi Party (SP) in UP.

Congress 'sorry' for Babri mosque demolition

Congress leader Digvijay Singh Saturday apologised for the demolition of the Babri Masjid in 1992 when the party was in power at the national level.

And now India to have its Air Force One!

The Indian prime minister's brand new office in the air - akin to the US president's Air Force One - is all set to be inducted into the Indian Air Force (IAF) later this month, an official said.

100 months left to save the planet: Charles

Prince Charles is to issue a warning that the world has only '100 months to act' before the damage caused by global warming becomes irreversible.

Arts & Entertainment

BGTF condolence for Pilkhana victims

Bangladesh Group Theatre Federation (BGTF) arranged a mourning programme at the Central Shaheed Minar premises on March 7 to pay tribute to the departed souls and victims of the BDR headquarters tragedy. The programme featured songs, reading out excerpts from newspapers and lighting up candles. District wings of BGTF arranged similar mourning programmes simultaneously across the country.

Sustainability and salination in Satkhira

Photographs by Munem Wasif revealing the daily impact of the scarcity of clean, safe water on the people of Bangladesh go on display today at the Mall Galleries in London, according to a press release.

Nandan ushers in spring with Rabindra Sangeet

Cultural organisation Nandan arranged it's 22nd musical programme at the Ramesh Chandra Dutt Memorial Auditorium, Chhayanat Shangskriti Bhaban on March 7. The programme, titled "Ektuku Kotha Shuni," featured Tagore songs, which have 'Bashonto' or the season of spring as the central theme.

From Land of the Rising Sun with love

As part of the Japan Cultural Festival 2009, a special screening of the Japanese animated movie “Doraemon the Movie: Nobita's Dinosaur 2006” was held at National Theatre Stage, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA), on March 6.

Udichi tragedy recalled in Barisal

A human chain was formed in the city on March 6, marking the 10th anniversary of the Udichi tragedy.

OP-ED

Bazlur Rahman: A truly professional newsman

THE first death anniversary of the Sangbad editor Bazlur Rahman brings back the memory of a distinguished journalist who combined in himself the qualities of a dedicated newsman, erudition of a gentleman and, last but not the least, an unremitting quest for the welfare of the hapless sections of the society.

Broadcast parliament activities

IT is imperative to make all activities of the Bangladesh Parliament transparent to ensure an effective and accountable parliamentary democracy system, and broadcasting of those activities would be helpful in informing people about the working of the parliament. After electing the members of parliament (MPs) the voters have no idea what is being done by their representatives, so broadcasting activities relating to the Parliament will help people to know about the performance of their elected representatives.

Accessing economic research on Bangladesh

A quiet revolution has taken place regarding access to economic research, and this revolution is especially important for economists in developing countries such as Bangladesh. Ten years ago, it would have been difficult for a Bangladeshi researcher or policy makers to benefit from easy access to the recent economics literature relevant to his/her job, be it related to monetary policy or the fight against poverty.

Guide to global motoring styles

THERE'S something bizarre about road travel in Asia. If you are in a country where people drive in a careful, orderly way, like Japan, cars have a special seatbelt for every bodily protuberance and there's a death penalty for not wearing the lot.


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