The Daily Star

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Thursday, May 24, 2018

News of: Sunday, 5th of April, 2009

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Hasina gives up role as BCL guardian

Awami League (AL) President Sheikh Hasina will no more be the organisational chief of her party's student wing Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL), which recently got involved in internal clashes at several educational institutions.

Economists project higher growth rate, reject WB forecast

Renowned economists predict gross domestic product (GDP) growth in Bangladesh will be around 5.5 percent this fiscal year, higher than the World Bank (BB) forecast.

Investigators dig into the past of mutineers

Investigators of the BDR carnage are now digging into the past of the mutineers as several questions including the motive behind the BDR carnage still remain unanswered.

Rice import drops to one-third in 9 months

Rice import in the first nine months of the current fiscal year has dropped to one third due to increase in production of rice and a price fall.

Power trips a day after record generation

Power generation saw a new record, 4,148MW, on Friday against the demand for 4,550MW, thanks to an increased gas supply to power plants at appropriate pressure.

Nor'westers kill 1, destroy 350 houses

Nor'westers across the country yesterday left one person dead, at least 67 people injured, 350 dwellings destroyed and standing crops on vast tracts of land damaged.

Playground occupied for 4yrs with DCC blessing

Although the caretaker government scrapped the controversial Gulistan-Jatrabari flyover project last year, the construction companies are still occupying Golapbagh children's playground as their parking space-cum-warehouse.

MPs to have major role in governing bodies

Political influence on non-government educational institutions is expected to soar again as the government prepares to enact a law regarding their management that will allow lawmakers and politicians to have a major role in the running of schools and colleges.

JS set to pass thanks-giving motion today amid protests

Amid protest from both the treasury and opposition benches, the House passes today a resolution to thank former president Iajuddin Ahmed for his inaugural speech in the ninth parliament.

15 injured as BCL factions clash at JNU

Two groups of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) activists yesterday locked in a clash at Jagannath University (JNU) over establishing supremacy on the campus, leaving at least 15 injured.

30 hurt as 2 trains collide head-on

At least 30 people, including seven children, were injured in a collision between two trains at Parbatipur Railway Junction in Parbatipur upazila yesterday evening.

BNP activist killed over land dispute

A BNP supporter was killed and 20 others were injured while some houses and shops were ransacked in an attack allegedly by a group of Awami League activists over land dispute at Dahia village in Shingra upazila of Natore yesterday.

ACC to suffer as Mashhud resigned

Anti-corruption Commission (ACC) chairman Hasan Mashhud Chowdhury's resignation might have negative impact on the drive against corruption as honest and competent leaders like him are hard to come by, said speakers at the BBC Bangladesh Sanglap yesterday.

War crime trial process starts this month

Law Minister Shafique Ahmed yesterday said the government will begin this month the trial process of war criminals who committed genocide in 1971 during Bangladesh's liberation war.

Landless poor to get khas land

District and upazila level committees formed by the government are now working to identify the landless families and khas land (government-owned land) for distribution among the families.

80pc Wasa water being misused

About 80 percent of the supply water in the city is being misused simply for lack of awareness of the users, experts told a discussion here yesterday.

CID starts investigation

Criminal Investigation Department (CID) yesterday started probing the March 13 fire at Basundhara City Complex in the capital.

80pc women, children repression cases false

State Minister for Law Md. Quamrul Islam yesterday said 80 percent cases relating to women and children repression are false and fabricated.

Don't record cases to harass people

Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) Commissioner AKM Shahidul Haque yesterday asked officers-in-charge (OCs) of all police stations in the capital not to record false cases so that innocent people are harrased.

5 more BDR jawans make confession

Five more Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) jawans yesterday confessed before two metropolitan magistrates to their involvement in the February 25-26 carnage at Pilkhana.

Pak Taliban claim NY attack responsibility

Pakistani Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud yesterday claimed responsibility for a shooting incident at an immigration services office in New York, which claimed 14 lives.

Suspected US missiles kill 13 in Pakistan

A suspected US drone fired two missiles at an alleged militant hide-out Saturday in northwestern Pakistan, killing 13 people in the latest strike aimed at extremists who pose a threat to international troops in Afghanistan, intelligence officials and residents said.

Lankan troops kill 18 rebels in sea battle

Sri Lankan security forces destroyed three Tamil Tiger boats yesterday and killed at least 18 guerrillas trying to escape a major military ground offensive, defence officials said.

Afghanistan dominates Nato summit

Asserting his voice at Nato, President Barack Obama yesterday welcomed Albania and Croatia to the alliance and declared to other nations that "the door to membership will remain open."

Obama reassured Poland on missile shield

US President Barack Obama reassured Warsaw over concerns that Washington might scrap a planned missile base in Poland whihc has angered Russia, Polish President Lech Kaczynski said yesterday.


BCL's unabated violence

THE Chattra League (BCL) has been hogging the media headlines ever since the AL came to power all for the wrong reasons. And their destructive activities have caused a large number of educational institutions to close down, causing serious problems to the great majority of students who are earnest about pursuing their studies.

G-20 nations' deal in London

THE just-concluded G-20 summit of the world's developed and emerging economies in London has sent out a big spurt of hope to those countries participating in it. The leaders ended up promising more than one trillion dollars to the International Monetary Fund and other bodies as a way of shoring up the global economy and reversing the crisis that has already led to thousands of jobs being lost. The summit has also come down heavily on tax havens and excessive corporate pay. It has also stressed sales of IMF gold reserves to help poor nations.

But the fighter still remains

EVERY move Hasan Mashhud Chowdhury made in recent times moved multitudes of people to either cheers or distress: when he resigned as an adviser of the former president Iajuddin Ahmed-led caretaker government, and when he became ACC chairman and spear-headed the crusade against corruption.

How to cope with the recession

MY students recently wanted to know the definitions of recession and depression. I reminded them of the old joke: a recession is when your neighbor loses his job; a depression is when you lose yours.

Monster in the mirror

BANGLADESH has been making headlines in the leading dailies all across the world recently, as the media is full of reports of militancy links to the BDR mutiny and the discovery of arms and ammunitions in a madrasa in Bhola.


It's Beauty and Masudul

A new king has taken over the track, but the queen remains the same as Masudul Karim became the fastest man and Nazmunnahar Beauty the fastest woman in the 34th UCB National Athletics Championships which ended yesterday with the same old question hanging: When will modernity come to the country?

Hannan recalled

Bangladesh Cricket Board yesterday named a 30-man preliminary squad for the ICC Twenty20 World Cup in England this June.

Mashrafe's sudden return

Mashrafe Bin Mortaza made a sudden return to the capital yesterday to visit his ailing mother.

Khelaghar & Baridhara's vital wins

Khelaghar and Baridhara Dazzlers brightened their chances of promotion after winning vital Super League matches of the First Division Cricket League yesterday.

Flintoff takes treble

Andrew Flintoff grabbed a hattrick to lead England to a 26-run victory over West Indies on Friday and a first ever one-day international series triumph in the Caribbean.

Hosts group champions

Hosts Bangladesh became champions in Group A when they beat group rivals Qatar 3-0 in the Davis Cup Asia/Oceania Zone Group IV qualifiers at the National Tennis Complex yesterday.

India inch closer

India took a big step towards winning their first Test series in New Zealand since 1968 after racking up a 233-run lead early in their second innings of the third Test at Wellington on Saturday.

Local Snippets

A four-day regional talent hunt programme sponsored by Grameenphone in collaboration with Special Olympics Bangladesh (SOB) for the intellectually challenged athletes came to an end yesterday at the BKSP Regional Training Centre in Chittagong.

India reveal T20 side

In the absence of the domestic Twenty20 tournament, which was postponed for the second year in a row, performance in the Indian Premier League (IPL) will be crucial for the 30 players selected in India's preliminary World Twenty20 squad for the tournament in England. The notable omissions were Sreesanth, Joginder Sharma, Ajit Agarkar and Piyush Chawla, who were part of the team that won the World Twenty20 in 2007.

Hussey returns to form

Captain Ricky Ponting hailed the return to form of Mike Hussey as Australia gained a crushing 141-run win over South Africa in the first one-day international at Kingsmead, Durban on Friday.

Pepsi brings out unique chance

Soft drink giant PepsiCo has brought out a unique opportunity to Bangladeshi cricket fans giving them the chance to bowl a ceremonial ball before the start of play in the ICC Twenty20 World Cup match between Bangladesh and New Zealand at Trent Bridge, Nottingham on June 11.

Djokovic floors Federer

Once-invincible Roger Federer was reduced to a rare bout of racket-bashing Friday as he was toppled in the semifinals of the Miami ATP Masters 1000 by Serbian Novak Djokovic.

Rovers' late rally

Benni McCarthy made his point to Sam Allardyce as the South African's late goal put Blackburn on course for a crucial 2-1 win against Tottenham on Saturday.

Jose jibes at rivals

Inter Milan boss Jose Mourinho has been cultiva-ting his favo-urite siege mentality at the Serie A leaders ahead of Sunday's trip to Udinese.

Must-win for United

Manchester United's shell-shocked stars have admitted that Sunday's Premier League clash with Aston Villa at Old Trafford has developed into a must-win game for Sir Alex Ferguson's faltering champions.

Scotland call time on duo

Barry Ferguson and Allan McGregor were on Friday told their Scotland international careers were over, as the hangover from their controversial, late-night drinking session grew steadily worse.

Mexico appoint Aguirre

The Mexican football federation said Friday it had appointed former coach Javier Aguirre as their new handler a day after sacking ex-England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson.

Some relief for Valencia

Spanish first division side Valencia has received a loan of 50 million euros and plans a capital increase to help it over a financial crisis threatening the club.

I was an idiot: Podolski

Germany striker Lukas Podolski admitted on Saturday that he had been an "idiot" for slapping national captain Michael Ballack during a World Cup qualifier against Wales.

Button grabs pole again

Jenson Button in his Brawn stormed to pole position for the Malaysian Grand Prix Saturday, topping the times during qualifying ahead of Toyota's Jarno Trulli.

Italy line up friendlies

World champions Italy will face Northern Ireland and New Zealand in friendlies in June as part of the build-up to the Confederations Cup in South Africa, the Italian football federation (FIGC) announced.

Klinsi plans long stay at Munich

Bayern Munich coach Jurgen Klinsmann sees himself staying for a long time with the Bundesliga giants.


Budget poses major challenge: CPD

The Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) sees budget preparation for the next fiscal year and its execution as the government's greatest challenge in the wake of a looming financial crisis and its impacts on the Bangladesh economy.

Govt's bank borrowings rise on slowing revenue

Government's bank borrowings have marked a 16 percent rise in about nine months of this fiscal year on the back of a slump in revenue collections, compared to the same period a year earlier.

BURO to raise Tk 100cr in syndicated loans

A nongovernmental microfinance institution, BURO Bangladesh, is set to raise Tk 100 crore through syndicated term loans to extend a microcredit programme, especially in agriculture, an official said yesterday.

Shrimp fry producers face slack sales

Shrimp fry producers are worried about losses for the second consecutive year due to a slump in demand in the current cultivation season, industry insiders said.

Uniform rules for telecom sought

The country's telecom industry should be run by such a set of uniform regulations that ensure a level playing field for both the local and foreign investors, speakers at a discussion said yesterday.

Commodities steady

Commodity prices held steady this week as the G20 summit stoked hopes of an economic upturn and rising demand for raw materials but gold fell as world leaders agreed to sell reserves to help fund IMF lending.

Recession safeguard to figure in budget

National Board of Revenue (NBR) chairman yesterday said the ways to offset the fallout stemming from the global recession and materialise the dream of “Digital Bangladesh” will figure high in the budget for the next fiscal year (2009-2010).

World economy gets reality check after G20 euphoria

Gloomy data from the world's leading nations Friday provided a stark reminder of the perilous state of the global economy a day after euphoria stemming from a G20 summit in London.

More rich in China by 2015

The global economic recession is forcing the rich in China to scale down their spending on luxury goods, but it cannot hold back the rapid growth of wealthy households, according to a report released on Friday by global management consultancy McKinsey & Company.

Google in talks to buy Twitter

Google chief executive Eric Schmidt recently dismissed Twitter as a "poor man's email" and shot down speculation the Web search giant was interested in buying the micro-blogging sensation.

Top Citi official to visit Dhaka

Mohammad Al-Shroogi, division executive of Citigroup (Middle East, Levant, Egypt and Pakistan) is scheduled to arrive in Dhaka today on a two-day visit.

Comcast CEO receives $24.7m compensation

The chief executive of Comcast Corp received a compensation package worth $24.7 million in 2008, down slightly from the prior year, according to calculations by The Associated Press that were based on a Friday Securities and Exchange Commission filing.

Jalil named Mercantile Bank chairman

Mercantile Bank Ltd has recently elected Md Abdul Jalil, MS Ahsan, and Golam Faruk Ahmed as the bank's chairman, first vice-chairman and second vice-chairman respectively.

Jobless rise hurts US recovery

Amid an unrelenting pace of job losses, the US economy faces a race against the clock as it struggles to recover from its worst slump since the Great Depression.

Recession drives the mothers of invention

Crisis is the mother of invention, if one believes the bright sparks behind the gizmos, contraptions, novelties and potions at the international inventions exhibition in the Swiss city of Geneva.

Wall Street faces new test

After putting together a remarkable four-week winning streak, Wall Street faces a new test of its rally in the coming week with the opening of earnings season.

Kraft Foods offers salmonella timeline

Kraft Foods Inc, the company whose testing led to the nationwide pistachio recall, said Friday it first heard there was salmonella in its trail mix in late 2007, but could not trace the possible source to tainted nuts from California until two weeks ago.

Dollar tops 100 yen

The dollar toped 100 yen for the first time in five months but weakened against other major currencies Friday as traders assessed the impact of a weak US employment on economic recovery prospects.

Japan's big three banks expected to report net loss

Japan's three biggest banking groups are expected to report net losses for the fiscal year to March 31 in the wake of the global financial crisis, local media reported on Saturday.

EU finance chiefs fret over US accounting relaxation

EU finance chiefs voiced concern on Friday at a recent move by the US accounting industry to relax the way US banks book losses over fears the change will put European rivals at a disadvantage.

Swiss ministers cast doubt on OECD tax list criteria

Swiss ministers on Saturday cast doubt on the criteria behind the OECD's classification of tax havens, which was at the heart of a crackdown announced at a Group of 20 summit this week.

Crisis-hit Mexico to tap into Fed credit swap

Mexico said Friday that it would tap into a credit swap with the US Federal Reserve, after this week seeking to open a 47-billion-dollar IMF credit line, as the crisis hits hard below the US border.

Weekly Currency Roundup

March 29th-April 2nd, 2009
Local FX Market
The USD remained steady against the BDT throughout the week. The market was active, and there was ample liquidity.


Unity of FFs a must for trial of war criminals

Speakers at a discussion yesterday said that trial of the war criminals is a must for a better Bangladesh.

Help resolve water-sharing issue with India

Bangladesh has urged the United Nations to play an important role in resolving water-sharing issue in this region, including that between Bangladesh and India, Food and Disaster Management Minister Abdur Razzaq said yesterday.

Be Bangalees at hearts to build digital Bangladesh: Dipu Moni

Foreign Minister Dipu Moni yesterday said everybody would have to become a Bangalee at hearts to build a digital Bangladesh as pledged by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

Set up directorate to protect consumers' rights: CAB

Consumers' Association of Bangladesh (CAB) yesterday called on the government to formulate rules under the recently passed Consumers' Protection Law 2009 as soon as possible in order to make it effective soon.

Int'l campaign for rights of climate refugees soon

Equity and Justice Working Group, Bangladesh is going to launch an international campaign to ensure rights of those who will be rendered homeless due to the sea level rise resulting from the global climate change.

Free book at higher secondary level can be a solution

Providing free textbooks at the higher secondary level by the National Curriculum and Textbook Board (NCTB) can resolve the crisis, media persons proposed this to the expert committee yesterday to ensure textbooks in time.

JNU students block road, damage vehicles

Students of Jagannath University (JNU) blocked Dhaka-Chittagong highway at Shanir Akhra in the city for one hour and damaged six buses yesterday in protest against the attack on four students of the university by transport workers.

ACC chief's resignation won't affect anti-graft drives

To dispel skepticism stemming from the resignation of the ACC chief, Agriculture Minister and the ruling Awami League presidium member Matia Chowdhury said the anti-corruption activities would go on in its natural course.

New technique to collect tolls: Trader shot

A trader was shot by a gang of unidentified criminals at his business centre at Kafrul in the city yesterday.

Hasina's remark protested

Different front organisations of BNP yesterday protested Prime Minister Shiekh Hasina's statement about the Cantonment residence of Leader of the opposition in parliament Khaleda Zia, saying that this is a conspiracy against the house, which reflects narrow-mindedness.

Call to implement Anti-tobacco strategic plan

Anti-tobacco activists yesterday demanded the complete implementation of the National Strategic Plan of Action for Tobacco Control (2007-10), formulated by Health and Family Welfare Ministry.

DUJ demands permanent salary structure

Dhaka Union of Journalists (DUJ) leaders yesterday urged the government to introduce a permanent salary structure and a national policy for the media houses in order to maintain peace and discipline.

Two killed in road accidents

Two people were killed in a separate road accidents in Gaibandha and Barisal in last two days.

4 DU students injured in brawl with market employees

Four students of Dhaka University (DU) were injured during a brawl with shop employees at the Annexo Tower in the city's Banga Bazar area last night.

Govt high school teachers demand 1st class status

Teachers of the government high schools yesterday urged the government to fill up the vacant posts in all government high schools and demanded first class gazetted officer status for them.

1,000 bottles of phensidyl seized, 2 held in Savar

Members of the Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) seized 1,000 bottles of phensidyl and arrested two drug peddlers in this connection at Kaliakoir in Savar yesterday.

Padma Bridge construction to begin next year

Communications Minister Syed Abul Hossain yesterday said construction work of the Padma Bridge would begin next year to establish a direct road link between the south-western region and other parts of the country.

SC reopens today

The Supreme Court (SC) reopens today after one-week summer vacation.

Parties use students to establish supremacy

Jagannath University (JNU) unit of Bangladesh Chhatra Union organised its 22nd convention and a reception for the freshmen amidst fighting between two fractions of Chhatra League on the campus yesterday.

Country passing thru' a crucial moment

Noted journalist and political analyst Abdul Gaffar Chowdhury yesterday said Bangladesh is now passing through a crucial moment.

Online version of Prothom Alo launched

With a view to reaching more readers immediately, the electronic version of the print edition of the Prothom Alo was launched at its office in the city yesterday with the web address: ''.

OMS gets lukewarm response in Khulna city

The open market sale (OMS) of rice in Khulna Metropolitan City has failed to get momentum this time as dealers are not getting response from low-income people as expected.

2 held with fake currencies

Two people were arrested with 98 pieces of fake notes of Tk 500 in Jessore yesterday.

US sees no Taliban link to NY shooting

US authorities said yesterday they had found no link between the Pakistan Taliban and a shooting in New York state which left 14 dead.

Tehran's mayor not mulling presidential bid

Conservative Mayor of Tehran Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf said he has no plan "for the time being" to run in the country's June 12 presidential election, Mehr news agency reported yesterday.

ICT carnival at Sust on April 10

A three-day ICT carnival styled 'Teletalk CSE Carnival-09' will begin on Shahjalal University of Science and Technology (Sust) campus on April 10.


Fancy takes her life fearing mockery of justice

A rape victim teenaged orphan girl of Chandanchahat village under Ranishankoil upazila in Thakurgaon committed suicide on Wednesday as she was prevented from taking shelter of law in the name of so-called village arbitration.

Footpath for pedestrians or shop owners?

A large number of shop owners as well as floating traders beside the roads in the centre of Bogra town have kept the footpaths occupied for long, making them virtually unusable for passer-by.

24 deported from India sent to jail

Twenty-four people, deported by Indian Border Security Force (BSF) through two border points in Rajshahi and Chapainawabganj districts on Friday, were sent to jail yesterday.

Khulna madrasas under watch

Activities of over a thousand quami, ebtedayee, nurani and alia madrasas in all nine upazilas in Khulna district are under surveillance of police and intelligence agencies.

Ensure Hirua's land right, protect his family

Around a hundred indigenous people under the banner of 'Jatiya Adivashi Parishad' yesterday formed a human chain at Shaheb Bazer zero point protesting a bid to evict indigenous people from their land and harassment by influential settlers.

RU teacher gets PBCP death threat

A teacher of Rajshahi University (RU) received death threat from outlawed Purbo Banglar Communist Party (PBCP) yesterday.

Poverty, the murderer

A housewife and mother of six killed herself by taking poison on Friday night as her family was unable to feed the hungry mouths.

'Punish killers of shrimp cultivator'

Over 2,500 people including women and children yesterday brought out a procession, formed a human chain and held a rally at Gazirhat, an important business centre in Debhata upazila, demanding arrest and punishment to the killers of a shrimp cultivator.

AL activist killed in Pabna

Unidentified criminals killed an Awami League (AL) activist at Sonapur village under Ataikula upazila of Pabna district early yesterday.


Container train

The number of import-laden containers to Dhaka ICD terminal has increased manifold during the last 5 years. The big shipping lines like Maersk Line, American President Lines, Hapag Lloyd, NYK Lines, Evergreen, Cosco Shipping Lines, Hanjin Shipping Co Ltd , Hyundai are the frequent users of Dhaka ICD. The average number of laden boxes of all these lines to Dhaka ICD per month crosses 2,500. Most of these imported commodities are raw cotton, garments fabrics & garments accessories which in fact are being used in most of the export oriented factories in & around Dhaka, Gazipur & Narayanganj. Since railway is the cheapest & safest communication mode, most of the shipping lines are dependent on Bangladesh railway authorities. Bangladesh railway has been trying to accommodate most of the containers to & from Chittagong & Dhaka for import ex-Chittagong & export ex-Dhaka ICD.

Coastal Zone Policy

Bangladesh's coastal zone covers 19 southern districts with a land area of 47,201 square kilometres. The coastal zone is inhibited by 35.08 million people. The coast of Bangladesh is known as a zone of vulnerabilities as well as opportunities. It is exposed to natural disasters like tropical storm, storm surge and downpour. The mixture of natural and artificial hazards, such as earthquake, water and soil salinity, various forms of pollution, wearing away, high arsenic content in land water, water sorting, risks from weather change, etc, have adversely affected life and livelihoods in the coastal zone and slowed down the speed of community progress in those areas.

Digital Bangladesh or student politics ?

Establishment of a digital Bangladesh by 2021 is the main objective of this government.

Intelligence failure?

As many other citizens, I too was horrified with the BDR mutiny and the loss of many brave soldiers. Does Bangladesh need this kind of tragedy to wake it up to the reality or should it tackle problems before they erupt? It would be naïve to think that the Bangladesh intelligence had no idea what was brewing underneath the surface while it was not at all surprising to many of us ordinary citizens, who barely cared about the art of intelligence gathering. It seems tension was there for a long time and nobody really cared to do anything to handle the situation. That raises the question of competency of our intelligence agency and the people (home ministry), who are responsible to deal with such problems. Can we truly rely on their competence?

Jhum cultivation

For different indigenous hill peoples, jhum cultivation (slash and burn method) is like part of their culture. They cultivate paddy and other crops through this special type of tilling in which farmers burn all kinds of trees, plants, shrubs etc on the slopes of hills and then they do other necessary works for growing crops. After some years they choose another hill for producing more crops. Actually, a considerable number of hill people live on crops from jhum. They have been doing this from time immemorial. In the past, the size of population was smaller and people did not mind burning some trees. But nowadays we cannot remain silent watching any harmful act on our environment, as we are deeply concerned about our existence in this planet.

Stop violence

Over the last two decades student politics has become a source of major concern. It is known to all that our student politics has a glorious and unforgettable history. They played a great role in 1952 , our liberation war in 1971 and in ending dictatorship in 1990. But the situation is very different today.

Pilkhana tragedy

What does the report of a jeep-load of outsiders entering the barrack and joining the jawans point to?

Civilians killed at Pilkhana

We are shocked at the unequal treatment being meted out to the civilians killed at Pilkhana. Both the government and the army are giving financial aid to the slain army officers' families but the civilians killed in the mutiny are deprived of any such aid.

Rupsha-Bagerhat train

The narrow gauge railway service between Rupsha and Bagerhat was in operation for more than one hundred years. This railway service was the lone communication mode between Khulna and Bagerhat, though during the winter bus service was in existence along the muddy district board road. No bus could ply during the rainy season because of the muddy road. After partition of India in 1947, a moderately good all weather road was built leading to bus service throughout the year. The narrow gauge railway track was converted into broad gauge railway line during the Pakistani days of great disparity.

Unnatural deaths

Some BDR personnel have reportedly committed suicide.

Deprived students

We, the students of the chemistry department of Chittagong University, are deprived of modern facilities. It is a matter of great regret that we have no computer laboratory. As a result, in the age of modern technology we are deprived of all sorts of technological facilities i.e. internet facilities, including all sorts of service. For that reason, we the students can't gather any information of the current world. So we can't keep pace with the competitive world. We can't collect any necessary data, information etc. We had a chemical conference last year and our department earned a huge amount of money from contributions made by different organisations. With that money our department has bought some computers only for the teachers. We are trying to draw the attention of the authorities to extend the technological support to the students as well.

Khulna gas supply project

This is undoubtedly frustrating news for Khulna, if it is correct. The immediate past caretaker government after seeing the dismal and declining economic situation of the Khulna division, approved the pipeline gas supply project financed by the ADP and the pipeline was to be drawn from Tangail to Kushtia to Khulna and the present government has countermanded the project with a view to using that fund for Sylhet gas project. If this is true, this would be the most disgraceful treatment to Khulna people and a continuation of the process of deprivation.

Failed political regimes

The BDR revolt [insensitive intelligence]: Bashundhara fire [lack of professionalism, training, and resources; campus violence [political rivalry]; the energy and water shortage; concentration of power in Dhaka metropolis; RMG unrest (from time to time); wholesale transfers in the BCS; political witch-hunting exercises; the winner takes all philosophy; etc, etc... all point to one conclusion: our political culture has not matured to run a new nation even after 37 years. the digital mobile telephone has vastly reduced the communications gaps, especially in the rural areas. The crafty politicians do not like it [burqa removed--exposure of vicious cartels].

Heroes of peace

For centuries, battles have been fought with kudos won for the war heroes. Violence has been condoned in declared wars, communal riots, religious crusades or hartals; use of arms in defence or offence has been justified. The war heroes have often been glorified along with the cause they defend, whether it is fundamentalism, capitalism, communism or any other ism that moves people to fight for their beliefs. Examples of such "courage and valour" expand in literature and in schools texts as inspirational stories for children.

Tribute to Birangonas

I am not a son of any freedom fighter. I did not see the liberation war of 1971. Whatever knowledge I have about liberation war, I have gathered it from books. I never met any Birangona. Perhaps, that's why I am now suffering from a sense of guilt.


Voice of America and British Broadcasting Corporation are inviting public opinions on various matters and subjects on different occasions from us as well as Bangladeshis living abroad and broadcasting these regularly and freely.

Trial of BDR mutineers

We demand quick, just and exemplary punishment to the so-called mutineers and dastardly killers of army officials. Investigation is going on and a very competent investigating officer has been assigned with the task. We hope the perpetrators will be identified and duly punished. But some disquieting information is coming to our knowledge which may not make the trial unquestionable. A few BDR personnel have died in unnatural conditions. For fair play and justice, the law has to be followed strictly.

Arms trade

The world is becoming dangerous day by day because of the terrorism unleashed by the goons across the globe. There are many reasons behind the mushroom growth of these terrorist organisations. One reason is the unscrupulous arms trade. World's superpowers are the main players of this trade. Arms deals worth billions of dollars are struck every year.


France, Germany endorse Obama's Afghanistan plan

France and Germany fully endorsed President Barack Obama's new Afghan war strategy but continued to firmly resist US demands for more combat troops yesterday in a rift that overshadowed symbols of unity at Nato's 60th-anniversary summit.

Wind may have forced N Korea to delay rocket launch

High winds may have forced North Korea to delay its rocket launch, despite the country's insistence Saturday that preparations were complete for the liftoff that many suspect is intended to test the country's long-range missile capabilities.

Obama to ease Cuba restrictions

President Barack Obama intends to lift the US ban on family members travelling to Cuba and remittances to the island, The Wall Street Journal reported Friday.

Nato soldier, 20 insurgents killed in Afghanistan

A soldier in a Nato-led force fighting an extremist insurgency in Afghanistan died in a bomb blast Saturday while the US military announced it had killed 20 Taliban-linked insurgents.

Zardari pledges to stop fundamentalists

Pakistan's president pledged yesterday to protect the country from rising fundamentalism as he addressed a crowd at the tomb of his slain wife and father-in-law.

No talks with Pakistan unless it dismantles terror setup: BJP

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has asserted that if elected to power it would have no peace dialogue with Pakistan unless Islamabad dismantles the terror infrastructure on its soil. The party delineated its approach towards foreign policy in its manifesto released here Friday.

Sharif says he 'forgot his anger' in national interest

Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz chief Nawaz Sharif has claimed that he has forgotten his anger in the national interest and agreed to work with other parties for building Pakistan.

Indian parties turn to 'climate politics'

For the first time in history, main Indian political parties turned to 'climate of politics or the politics of climate.

UN chief urges rebels to let Lanka civilians move freely

UN chief Ban Ki-moon on Friday urged Tamil rebel leaders to allow trapped civilians to move freely out of the conflict area of northern Sri Lanka.

Rahul files nomination from Amethi

Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi on Saturday filed his nomination papers for Amethi parliamentary constituency in Sultanpur in presence of party President Sonia Gandhi.

BJP trying to divide West Bengal

The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) Friday accused the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of trying to divide West Bengal and asserted that it would make BJP's tie-up with the pro-Gorkhaland Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) a poll issue.

Demos disrupt Strasbourg visit by Nato leaders'spouses

Demonstrations in Strasbourg, where leaders of the member states of Nato are celebrating its 60th anniversary, disrupted a programme laid on for their spouses yesterday.

'9 militants enter Punjab to carry out Manawan like attack'

Days after intelligence agencies warned that over a dozen terrorists have entered Islamabad and Lahore in the garb of religious preachers, intelligence sources have now revealed that nine militants have sneaked into Punjab and are planning to carry out attacks similar to the Manawan police training academy strike.

Ice shelf about to break away from Antarctic coast

A massive ice shelf anchored to the Antarctic coast by a narrow and quickly deteriorating ice bridge could break away soon, the European Space Agency warned Friday.

Suu Kyi's US backers plead to keep sanction

US Congress supporters of Myanmar's democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi pleaded Friday to keep sanctions on the military regime as a key senator said efforts to isolate the junta had failed.

Troops on alert after Cambodia-Thai border clash

Troops on both sides of the Cambodian-Thai border were on alert Saturday after gunbattles near a disputed temple left at least two soldiers dead, a Cambodian official said.

Russian forces on alert for N Korean rocket launch

Russian forces are on full alert for an expected imminent North Korean rocket launch, an air force spokesman was quoted as saying yesterday.

UN climate talks: Save the forests -- but how?

Deforestation, one of the main drivers of global warming, has barged its way to the heart of UN climate talks, which resumed in Bonn this week.

Iraq's largest lake tranquil again with Qaeda gone

The tranquil scene at Lake Tharthar, Iraq's largest stretch of water, belies its recent violent history as an Al-Qaeda stronghold until just six months ago.

US-Russia nuclear disarmament talks soon: Moscow

Talks between the United States and Russia on cutting their nuclear arsenals will begin before the end of the month, a Russian official was quoted as saying yesterday.

Arts & Entertainment

Dance traditions of Bengal: High time for a monumental re-evaluation

Dance and music are ingrained in Bengali traditions. Originating in the rural areas, almost all customs involve narration in the form of songs and certain physical movements. Today, burdened under financial woes and threatened by the invasive global electronic media, these traditions are gradually losing ground. Adding to that loss is the lack of government and non-government initiatives to conserve the art forms and the escalating preference for razzle-dazzle over authentic folklore.

Bibi takes Kolkata by storm

The first day of Kolkata Fashion Week (April 2), clearly belonged to Bangladeshi model-turned-designer of international fame, Bibi Russell, who showcased the rich Bengali heritage of textiles -- her 'gamcha' and natural fibre collection.

Ujandhol reverberates with tunes of Shah Abdul Karim

The two-day 'Baul Shah Abdul Karim Loko Utshab' ended at the home village of the living legend yesterday afternoon. Banglalink honoured Karim at the concluding programme. A similar event was organised to honour the eminent artiste last year as well.

Shera Kantho and Khudey Gaan Raj

The two-day primary audition and final selection round of the music talent hunt 'Shera Kantho' (best voice) and 'Khudey Gaan Raj' (best child singer) 2009 competitions of Channel i concluded on Friday night with the slogan “Ganey Awaj Tolo Praney”. The event was held at the Barisal Club auditorium.

Anondetey Jaago: An expression of joy through music and verse

On Friday evening, a programme featuring recitation and music was held at Shawkat Osman Memorial Auditorium, Central Public Library. Recitors Fahima Samad, Rubaiya Khan Papri and Ruman Mahjabin Sweety were the performers at the event titled "Anondetey Jago". Under the platform 'Tepantorey Tinjon,' the trio united to showcase their creative endeavours which is directed by noted recitor Meer Barkat.

Theatre festival by Aboyob Natyadal at BSA

Featuring plays by theatre troupes both from the capital and outside Dhaka, a weeklong theatre festival started at the National Theatre Stage, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) from April 3. Aboyob Natyadal has organised the festival to celebrate its 12th anniversary.


Why are madrasas turning out militants?

WITH the busting of the JMB dens, there was a feeling of complacency that the country had got rid of the menace of religious extremism. However, the danger of JMB still looms over the country. The truth is that insurgency has often thrived in the country on the misconception that outlawing a subversive organisation will quell rebellion.

A right can sometimes become a wrong

I don't suppose the Christian principal of Nirmala Convent Higher Secondary School has looked at a picture of Jesus Christ lately, although it should be on more than one wall of the institution. If he had, he would have noticed that Jesus had a beard.

A slap for democracy?

THIS is ridiculous. This contradicts the spirit of our constitution. Above all, this implicitly opposes the electoral manifesto of the government. This manifesto pledged to bring a positive change in the country by strengthening the local government and democratic ethos.

The Daily Star

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