The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Tuesday, September 23, 2014


News of: Friday, 17th of April, 2009

Front Page

Hannan, 13 other Huji men indicted for Ramna blasts

Eight years into the Ramna Batamul blast, a Dhaka court yesterday framed charges against 14 operatives of outlawed Islamist outfit Harkatul Jihad al Islami (Huji) including its chief Mufti Abdul Hannan in two cases filed in connection with the incident.

India goes to polls, 18 killed in violence

The first phase of Indian parliamentary elections yesterday was marred by Naxalite violence in four states killing 18 people, including five polling officials and 10 security personnel, and it witnessed a voter turnout of 60 percent.

Changes brighten hope for more functional JS

The ninth parliament which set out its journey on January 25 shows signs of changes in parliamentary culture with the formation of all standing committees and the opposition's active presence in the inaugural session.

Alert on coasts as cyclonic storm Bijli roaring over Bay

Bijli, the season's first cyclonic storm formed over the Bay of Bengal early yesterday, was heading north towards the coastline, prompting the meteorological department to raise the cautionary signal to four.

EC plans dialogue with parties

The Election Commission (EC) will initiate steps for further amendments to the Representation of the People Order (RPO), and will hold dialogue with the political parties in this regard, an election commissioner said yesterday.

Tk 135cr misused by Gram Sarkar in 4yrs

The parliamentary standing committee on local government yesterday alleged that members of the now-defunct Gram Sarkar units misused and embezzled Tk 135 crore during the last BNP-led government.

No respite from power cuts

Life in the capital and elsewhere in the country has become miserable with the mercury rising and its effects worsened by frequent power cuts.

Another BDR jawan dies in custody

Yet another BDR jawan died in custody yesterday.

Khaleda vows legal fight with govt

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia said a deep-rooted conspiracy is on to evict her from the cantonment house and vowed to wage a legal battle against it.

40pc railway land occupied illegally

Over 40 percent of the land belonging to Bangladesh Railway (BR) has been encroached over the years, proper use of which could make the railway a very profitable sector, speakers told a roundtable yesterday.

Ashraf warns of 'danger' if upazila debate turns worse

LGRD and Cooperatives Minister Syed Ashraful Islam yesterday alleged that some sections of the media have been stoking the opposition to the recently passed upazila parishad law.

Probe agency appointment by Monday

Home Minister Sahara Khatun yesterday said the investigation agency to probe into war crimes would be formed by next Sunday or Monday.

HSC exams begin

The first day of the HSC and its equivalent Alim and business management (BM) examinations passed without any major untoward incident and disorder anywhere in the country yesterday.

Hasina seeks Islamic leaders' help in finding out terrorists

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday sought cooperation of Islamic leaders and scholars in finding out terrorists and troublemakers.

Edible oil prices rise again

The price of edible oil increased in the capital with its gradual rise in the international market since last month.

7 ex-BTTB staff sued for embezzling Tk 2.88cr

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has filed five cases against seven former officials of Bangladesh Telegraph and Telephone Board (BTTB), now Bangladesh Telecommunications Company Ltd (BTCL), in Chittagong for misappropriating over Tk 2.88 crore.

Faisal, Badal remanded again

A Bhola court yesterday placed Faisal Mostafa and his prime associate Hassan Saifuddin Badal again on a 10-day remand to grill them on the motive behind keeping arms and ammunition at Green Crescent Madrasa in Bhola.

Mujibnagar Day today

The historic Mujibnagar Day will be observed across the country today, commemorating the formation of Bangladesh's first government at Baidyanathtola mango grove in Meherpur on this day in 1971.

BNP head office eviction notice stayed till Apr 23

A Dhaka court Wednesday stayed the eviction notice issued against the BNP head office till April 23 and another court yesterday asked both of parties of the case to maintain status quo during this period.

9th Bangladesh Business Awards ceremony tonight

The Ninth Bangladesh Business Awards ceremony will be held tonight at Sonargaon Hotel in the capital.

UN inspectors 'forced' to quit N Korea

UN nuclear inspectors left North Korea yesterday after the hardline communist state ordered them out and announced plans to restart production of weapons-grade plutonium.

Suicide car bomber kills 19 in Pakistan

A suicide bomber blew up a vehicle packed with explosives at a police checkpoint in northwest Pakistan, killing 19 police and civilians, officials said yesterday.

Shoe targets Advani this time

A slipper was lobbed at BJP leader LK Advani yesterday by a former functionary of the saffron party during a public meeting here, the latest in the series of such episodes involving political leaders, but it did not hit him.

Karzai asks US-Nato to explain civilian deaths

Afghan President Hamid Karzai yesterday asked the overall commander of US-led and Nato forces in Afghanistan to explain recent civilian casualties inflicted by foreign troops.

11 more Navy men quizzed

Eleven more former naval officers, GCOs and crew on deputation in Bangladesh Coast Guard in 2004 were interrogated in connection with the sensational Chittagong arms haul case here yesterday.

US pushes 2-state solution to sceptical Israelis

US Mideast envoy George Mitchell pressed the two-state solution on Thursday to sceptical officials in Israel, where hawkish new Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu opposes a Palestinian state.

Editorial

Government must revisit the Upazila Parishad Act

A group of elected upazila parishad officials, calling themselves the Bangladesh Upazila Chairmen Forum, have threatened to declare Members of Parliament in their local areas persona non grata unless the government revokes the just-passed Upazila Parishad Act empowering MPs to exercise authority over UP chairmen and members. The grievances of the UP representatives are perfectly understandable. But that does not obscure the fact that what they have done through their action is not only objectionable but also highly outrageous. The verbal and body language they have employed to make their sentiments known points clearly to things ominous. If these chairmen and other upazila representatives have their way, one can be sure that the country is in for some troubled times, especially where local government is concerned.

Taking care of the unemployed and poor

World Bank Dhaka office's senior economist Zahid Hossain in a report titled 'Bangladesh: State of economy and policy response to the global economic crisis' released on Monday suggested that job creation in Bangladesh would have to be at least of the order of two million in place of one million required prior to global economic crisis.

We hate the sinner, not the sin

A couple in the United States went on television and bragged about how they had engaged in shoplifting while their children gave them a hand. They claimed they had earned as much as $3,500 in a week, totaling $100,000 altogether, which was easy money for them. But it proved not so easy soon after the TV show, when the FBI started to investigate them. Truth doesn't always set us free. It also gets us in trouble.

Hectic honeymoon

The AL-led grand alliance government has passed honeymoon period amid many challenges to fulfill the people's expectations for change. It was not difficult to surmise the shape of things to come to perplex the new establishment. Thorny days were ahead as the grand alliance government inherited a hazy political landscape as a remnant of the immediate past. The political situation was shrouded with uncertainties.

As if we don't have enough

The last day of the 1st session of the 9th Parliament ended on a positive note with both the prime minister (PM) and the leader of the opposition (LO) having a lively face-off, which is a rarity in our parliamentary democracy where boycott and absenteeism have been the norm. The journey to democracy has met some unforeseen calamities and challenges. The most significant was the BDR mutiny, which continues to haunt the nation.

Sports

Booters reach Nepal

The Bangladesh national football team reached the Nepalese capital of Kathmandu yesterday to play a sole warm-up match against Nepal Police on Saturday.

Standing on a sticky wicket

They say umpires and wicketkeepers get the short end of the stick in the cricket field. An umpire has to be on top of his game every delivery. On a good day, he is said to have done a decent job if he goes unnoticed as only the cricket connoisseur who understands the nuances of the game would definitely mention the umpire; but gone are the days of Neville Cardus.

BCB asks Shaju to explain

Shahjahan Shaju, the local coach who was reported to have punched an umpire during an age-level game on Wednesday, has been asked yesterday by BCB's game development committee to explain his actions.

T20, an instant hit

Sleepy Southampton on England's south coast is an unlikely birthplace for a revolution, but on Friday, June 13, 2003, the first shots were fired in cricket's brave new world.

Anybody's game

Little-known cricketers and underdogs go into the Indian Premier League in South Africa with keen expectations as the event is not all about favourites.

India reach new heights

India on Wednesday toppled Australia to achieve their highest-ever ranking of second in the ICC ODI Championship table courtesy the series victory in New Zealand and the world champions' recent dip in form.

SL under-19 due today

The Sri Lankan under-19 team will arrive in the capital today.

C'Ron stunner lifts Man United

Manchester United rekindled glorious European nights from their past as a stunning goal by Cristiano Ronaldo fired them to victory over Porto in their Champions League semifinal Wednesday.

Federer finds his feet

Roger Federer is taking the good with the bad as he slides into another clay court season at the Monte Carlo Masters.

Local Snippets

A discussion on sporting development was held at the Ansar VDP headquarters yesterday.

Bollywood cricket

The involvement of some of Bollywood's biggest stars in the Indian Premier League (IPL) means the world's best one-day cricketers are not the only draw when the competition starts this weekend.

England duty puts 'Petals' to Flower

Throughout his career, England's new team director Andy Flower has shown a willingness to confront adversity that will stand him in good stead as he seeks to rejuvenate an ailing England side.

IPL ties getting longer

Fans who have become accustomed to Twenty20 matches lasting just three hours are in for a surprise during the second season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) -- they will now last three-and-a-quarter hours. Part of the appeal of the shortest form of the game is the non-stop action but IPL games will now take longer and there will be no action at all during the added time.

Many give it a miss

The Indian Premier League (IPL) may bring unforeseen riches to the world's top cricketers, but not everyone has fallen for the lure of the lucre.

Windfall for S Africa

Moving the Indian Premier League (IPL) extravaganza to South Africa will help create a silver lining to the grey economic clouds hovering above the country.

Arsenal crush Villarreal

Arsenal turned on the style to crush 10-man Villarreal 3-0 in the Champions League quarterfinal second-leg on Wednesday and set up an all-English semifinal showdown against Manchester United.

Fergie hails C'Ron

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson hailed Ronaldo after his wonder goal gave the three-time winners victory over Porto in Wednesday's Champions League quarterfinal.

Lampard fears Messi

Frank Lampard, the England and Chelsea midfielder, fears the influence Lionel Messi will have on his club's Champions League semifinal following the loss of Ashley Cole to suspension.

Kaka wants Gerrard

AC Milan's Brazilian superstar Kaka has said he would sign Liverpool and England midfielder Steven Gerrard if he had the chance.

Ribery stokes Barca fire

Bayern Munich star Franck Ribery on Thursday fuelled further speculation over a switch to Barcelona after saying he understands why compatriot Thierry Henry plies his trade for the Spanish giants.

'Inter to play for win'

Inter Milan president Massimo Moratti vowed that his team will be playing to win when they tackle Juventus in the 'derby of Italy' in Turin on Saturday.

Galliani calls for Pato protection

AC Milan vice-president Adriano Galliani has demanded that referees give more protection to star teenage striker Pato.

Rovers suffer Santa blow

Blackburn suffered a blow to their Premier League survival hopes on Wednesday when Paraguayan striker Roque Santa Cruz underwent knee surgery.

Obama backs US WC bids

US President Barack Obama placed his support firmly behind his country's bids to host either the 2018 or 2022 World Cups on Wednesday.

UCL semis line-up

Champions League semifinals line-up after Wednesday's quarterfinals:

Business

BTRC to open up IP telephony

The telecom watchdog has decided to issue licences for IP telephony in a move to open up voice calls through the internet protocol, the use of which has so far been prohibited in Bangladesh.

Denim makers under strain

The denim industry, one of the fastest growing sub-sectors in apparel, is facing strains as major entrepreneurs have stopped expansion activity due to the global recession, industry insiders said.

Local carriers suffer slump in traffic

Local carriers face a decline in traffic as the global economic meltdown dries up recruitment demand for Bangladeshi migrant workers in the Middle East and Southeast Asian region, operators said yesterday.

Temporary stimulus package Sunday

Finance Minister AMA Muhith has said the government will announce a temporary stimulus package on Sunday in a bid to build confidence among businesses amid global recession.

BGMEA repeats incentive demand

The BGMEA leaders yesterday reiterated their demands for giving an extra exchange rate by Tk 10 against each dollar on 30 percent of the total export value and introducing the export performance bonus system to tackle the bad impacts of the global recession.

100-day job programme now under redesign to detect weaknesses

Food and Disaster Management Minister Dr Abdur Razzaque has said the government is redesigning the 100-day employment generation programme to identify its weaknesses.

Minister reiterates commitment to ICT development

Yeafesh Osman, state minister for science, information and communication technology, has said the government is committed to sustainable development of the ICT sector.

Bailout also covers jute sector: Minister

The jute sector will get the same treatment as the RMG sector in the upcoming bailout package, assured Jute and Textile Minister Abdul Latif Siddiqi.

Bitumen bailing plant in Mongla EPZ soon

A Singapore-Bangladesh joint venture Company will establish a bitumen bailing plant in Mongla Export Processing Zone.

Warid inks deal with Anwar Group

Warid Telecom yesterday signed a corporate agreement with Anwar Group, a business conglomerate in the country, to provide complete telecommunication services under its corporate package, says a press release.

IMF hits right note in credit lines

After a first failed attempt, the International Monetary Fund appears to have found a way of providing a badly-needed cash lifeline to countries hit by the global economic crisis.

SMEs have potential to fuel economy

Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) have long been considered as the principal driving force of Bangladesh's economy. Along with stimulating private ownership and entrepreneurial skills, SMEs are flexible and can adapt quickly to changing market demand and supply, generate employment, help diversify economic activity, and make a significant contribution to exports and trade.

Stocks end higher

The Dhaka market ended the week on a higher note with stocks gaining for a fourth day, led by prominent sectors, except for banks.

Warid inks deal with Anwar Group

Warid Telecom yesterday signed a corporate agreement with Anwar Group, a business conglomerate in the country, to provide complete telecommunication services under its corporate package, says a press release.

Oil prices claw back ground

Oil prices rose Thursday, buoyed by hopes of a turnaround in the recession-hit American economy as traders looked past news that US crude stocks have hit their highest level since 1990.

India's inflation falls to 0.18pc

India's inflation rate slipped closer to zero, official data showed Thursday, giving the central bank more room to cut interest rates to bolster a flagging economy.

China posts slowest economic growth in 10 years

China announced its slowest economic growth in at least a decade on Thursday, but analysts said there were some signs that the worst could be over for the Asian giant.

European car sales fell 9pc in March

Sales of new cars in Europe fell 9.0 percent in March on a 12-month basis, a smaller decline than in previous months due to government subsidies to encourage buying, industry association ACEA said Thursday.

Seychelles wins debt relief from Paris Club: Creditors

The Club of Paris, a group of rich creditor nations, said Thursday it had agreed to cancel 45 percent of the Seychelles' debt of 163 million dollars (215 million euros).

New addl MD for Uttara Bank

Uttara Bank Ltd has recently promoted Shaikh Abdul Aziz to additional managing director, says a press release.

SIBL's new chief

Social Investment Bank Ltd (SIBL) has elected Nasiruddin as the chairman and Sayedur Rahman and Munshi Akhtaruzzaman as vice chairmen of the board of directors of the bank, says a press release.

Metropolitan

S Asian states discuss ways to check terror financing

Officials from South Asian countries, including Bangladesh, have wrapped up talks on government action to stop terror financing of charitable institutions.

Pahela Baishakh brings back life to CU after eight years

The last cultural function on the sprawling campus of Chittagong University (CU), set in idyllic lush green surroundings and zigzag hills, was organised nearly eight years ago in June 2001 at the fag end of the then Awami League government.

Yunus briefs Hillary about Grameen healthcare plans

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton yesterday received Prof Muhammad Yunus and the Grameen Healthcare delegation to the World Healthcare Congress at her office.

Panic grips BCL leaders

Panic has gripped many leaders of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) who were involved in different anti-organisational activities including instigation of violence on Dhaka University (DU) campus following reports that law enforcement agencies have prepared a list of those leaders.

Ensure welfare of people with disability: DU VC

Dhaka University (DU) Vice-chancellor Prof AAMS Arefin Siddique yesterday said access to information and communication technology (ICT) for people with disability should be ensured so that they can establish themselves in the society.

Dhaka ready to assist Yangon in early repatriation: FM

Foreign Minister Dipu Moni expressed Bangladesh's readiness to extend assistance to Myanmar for early repatriation of the remaining Rohingya refugees to their homeland.

5 killed in road accidents

At least Five people were killed and 13 others injured in separate road accidents in Rangpur Bandarban and Jamalpur in last two days.

BNP ready to tackle any issue legally

BNP standing committee member Moudud Ahmed yesterday said they are ready to tackle any issue legally if the government wants to evict party Chairperson Khaleda Zia from her Cantonment house.

Govt-NGO partnership a must to conserve tigers

Experts at a workshop yesterday called for expanding government and non-government partnership to build collaboration for protecting the Royal Bengal Tigers in the Sundarbans.

Maulana Sakhawat among 8 rajakars sued

Eight 'rajakars' of Keshabpur upazila of Jessore district, including Jatiya Party presidium member and former lawmaker Maulana Sakhawat Hossain have been sued for killing freedom fighter Kawser Ali during liberation war in 1971.

JMB militant held in Naogaon

Police arrested one more militant belonging to the banned Jama'atul Mujahedin Bangla-desh (JMB) from Atrai upazila yesterday, while they sought a 10-day remand for three Jamaat men held on Tuesday under suspicion of having links with the Islamist outfit.

JMB commander Arif appeals for reviewing his murder case

Asadul Islam alias Arif, a detained top leader of the banned militant organisation Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB), has appealed to the government to withdraw a murder case filed against him by describing it a "politically motivated case."

Thakurgaon Mass Killing Day today

Today is Thakurgaon Mass Killing Day.

Over 2300 chickens culled in Savar

Over 2300 chickens were culled in a poultry farm here on Wednesday night following detection of bird flu.

49.7pc literate in country

Nearly half of the nation's 140 million adult citizens are proficient enough to read street flyers or calculate the amount of money spent in cellphone conversations, revealed a Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) study yesterday.

Resignations of 38 AAGs accepted

The president has accepted resignations of 38 assistant attorneys general who were appointed during the caretaker government.

1,401 more held

Police in separate raids arrested 1,401 people on different charges across the country in last 24 hours till 6:00am yesterday.

40 JMB men produced in Mymensingh court

Police produced 40 Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) men, including two capital punishment awardees - Salahuddin Salehin and Asaduzzaman Ponir and Fahima Akhtar, wife of executed JMB second-in-command Bangla Bhai, before the court yesterday.

Obituary

Muhammad Abu Taher Dulal, son of late Abdul Jalil Mia and senior vice president of Chandpur Awami League, passed away due to a cardiac arrest in Chandpur on April 11, says a press release.

BSF abducts Bangladeshi farmer

Indian Border Security Force (BSF) abducted a Bangladeshi farmer yesterday from zero point at Kushkhali border in Sadar upazila.

Ban on Jamaat, Shibir politics demanded

Workers Party Rajshahi unit yesterday demanded ban on the politics of Jamaat-e-Islami and its student front Islami Chhatra Shibir (ICS) across the country.

12 injured in BCL factional clash in Khulna

Twelve people, including four policemen, were injured in a clash between two factions of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) at Khulna Polytechnic Institute (KPI) on Wednesday night.

Hamid's detention extended

The detention of Akhtar Hamid Siddiqui, former deputy speaker, has been extended by 90 days.

Indigenous FFs' confce in Joypurhat today

A conference of indigenous freedom fighters will be held in Joypurhat today with the aim of realising their five-point demand that include constitutional recognition of the indigenous people.

Notice on Khaleda within a week to quit house

State Minister for Law Qamrul Islam yesterday said a notice will be served on BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia through the Cantonment Board within a week, asking her to leave her Cantonment house.

7.34 tonnes of MS rods looted

Dacoits yesterday looted over 7.34 metric tonnes of MS rods from a newly installed sales depot of BSRM Group of Companies at Teguria in Keraniganj.

Bangla Bhai's accomplice arrested

The Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) arrested a Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) operative, who was an accomplice of top JMB leader Siddiqul Islam alias Bangla Bhai, in Rajshahi city last night.

Bail to Jalil extended

The High Court (HC) yesterday extended its earlier order granting bail to Awami League (AL) General Secretary Abdul Jalil in a graft case filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) for amassing wealth illegally and concealing information about the assets.

Electronic goods worth Tk 16 lakh seized at ZIA

A surveillance team of the customs at Zia International Airport (ZIA) yesterday seized a huge quantity of electronics goods worth Tk 16 lakh and arrested a person on charge of smuggling the goods from Singapore.

HC rule on govt

The High Court (HC) yesterday issued a rule upon the government to explain why it should not be directed to appoint a public food analyst and set up a food court at every district in the country as per provisions of Pure Food Ordinance 1959 for ensuring pure food and safety of public health.

Letters

Bangla New Year

With a “Shuvo Noboborsho 1416” to all I begin!

Traffic jams

Albeit we are expressing apprehension and shouting for a resolution on a regular basis and the government is striving to mitigate the traffic congestion, this crisis is looming large, why? It's simple to comprehend that when things are high in number the procedures for supervision and control become complicated. There are actually many reasons behind unbearable traffic congestion and one of them is excessive number of cars. The number of cars is increasing rapidly. Let's now come back to the main point, how do cars actually cause traffic jam? Easily one can figure out by looking around while remaining stuck on the roads esp. during traffic congestion that merely two-three big and some small buses are stuck whereas hundreds of cars are queuing up all over the road. And each car is carrying either a single or two-three passengers at a time. It's like using an entire building not an apartment for a single nuclear family. Lately, the UAE govt. has made the provision for moderately-long way journey from one place to another by comfortable as well as affordable giant buses to ease the traffic congestion. And people are getting interested in it as it costs them less and provides them safety and saves their time too. However, our respectable rich citizens can come forward to help ease traffic jam by phasing out the unnecessary purchase of new cars. And we had better avoid using cars unnecessarily. If we think deep down we'll find that these cars are one of the causes behind traffic jam and responsible for air pollution, squandering of time, money, fuel etc. However, the government also needs to think about actual number of foot-over bridges as needed, widening of roads, underground rail-crossing system, setting discouraging tax rate on cars (to lessen the statistics), launching more double decker buses like-- Volvo, more flyovers on busy avenues, no approval for industrial buildings like garments factory and other manufacturing industries within the capital city in order to ease the traffic system in the capital.

Land of treasure

Bangladesh is so small that it becomes tough to find it in a global map. But the Almighty has blessed the country with many hidden treasures. Obviously, the culture and heritage is quite unique and rich. In fact during festivals like Eid-ul-fitre, Pahela Baishakh, Ekusey February, etc Bangladesh takes a new look. This country is very different from other countries as it has six different seasons. Each season has its own beauty.

Upazila issue

Thanks to the ntv for presenting an informative and thought provoking talk show. I hope the government has listened to these guests with due attention and purpose. The question of power sharing with the MPs should be left for further consideration of the government and the relevant quarters. My brief reaction to the bill is as follows:

Struggling with strategic fallout...

The piece, written on the above subject by Brig Gen Md. Abdur Rashid, psc, G (retd) with Mr. Francis Arif, appearing on 4 April 2009, is interesting reading. I would like to give my compliments to the authors through the courtesy of your column for their brilliant write-up.

Magistracy powers

Many opinions have been passed on this subject. I am not an authority on criminal law but common sense suggests that Magistracy Powers of 'remand in custody pending trial or authority to enter and search a property etc,' should not be confused with Judicial powers of actual trial. Police has wide powers of arresting an individual, however it can only hold such a person for a very limited time without any charge and must produce the arrestee before a magistrate for remand for further interrogation etc, and provide evidence to magistrate as to why this should be given. The magistrate may or may not agree to this further detention, or if there is sufficient evidence may agree to charges provided by the police to hold the arrestee for remand and trial before a judicial court. The same goes for granting 'search warrant' by a magistrate as this is not a judicial act and the number of judges are very few and they would have much more onerous duties.

Is it fair?

What we have been watching is that many employment notices require three first classes, it means at least one in undergraduate level/ post graduate level. It is easily conceivable that it is very tough for those who passed in the class/division system. Those who have passed in the grading system, it is easier for them to get 3.00 in the scale of four than those who passed in class/division system. So, it is a clear case of discrimination. As the division/class system is on the verge of elimination, I would request all the employers to consider this particular aspect before issuing any notice for employment. It is gross injustice to us who have passed in the division/class system and couldn't get 1st class in graduation or master's level.

Abdication of responsibility

In the ninth parliamentary election, Awami League President Sheikh Hasina declared 'Charter for Change' as her election manifesto in order to build up a progressive, developed 'Digital Bangladesh'. The triumph of the Awami League with an unpredictably overwhelming majority apparently reflected the people's wishes and expectations. The violent activities of Bangladesh Chhatra League, the student wing of the Awami League, has, however, created a reign of terror in different educational institutions which has within three months, resulted in the deaths of two students, injury to about thousand and the closure of thirty educational institutions for an indefinite period of time. The violent activities of the Chhatra League on the campuses of different educational institutions; repeated internecine brawls, tender businesses, rehearsal with arms and firearms in the dormitories for supremacy and hall occupation, have raised numerous questions in the people's minds, and further raised the concern of the guardians and made the whole situation bleak. Consequently, Sheikh Hasina stepped down from the position of BCL's organisational head. The retreat of Sheikh Hasina from the organizational responsibility of the Chhatra League has put it in uncertainty. The guardian-less Chhatra League may consequently become much more reckless, unbridled and arrogant. Through reforming the organisational structure, developing qualitative leadership by council, setting up committees of different educational institutions, the Hasina led government can bring back stability and peace to the educational institutions.

An appeal

I would like to draw the attention of the honourable minister for housing about the sloppiness of Rajuk in managing their land projects. I applied for a piece of land in the Uttara Third Phase project in early 2004 along with many other university professors. With lot of uncertainties in the era of alliance government and the caretaker government, Rajuk finally sent us letters indicating their decision to allocate us land in the middle of 2008, 4 years after the submission of application!! Accordingly, I paid the amount for the first instalment by 30th of September, 2008. We were advised that the actual letter of allotment with the plot number would be given to us soon. Unfortunately, no further communication was made by Rajuk yet. In the meantime, Rajuk has called for another application for land for their Uttara and Purbanchal projects.

Stolen mobile phones

In the United Kingdom if a mobile phone is lost or stolen and the matter is reported to the mobile phone service provider, the SIM of the lost mobile phone is deactivated. The mobile phone itself is locked and cannot be reused by any other person. In Bangladesh scores of mobile phone are lost or snatched away by muggers every day. It has taken an epidemic form.

Income tax

With the development of market economy throughout the world, the importance of income tax as the source of income of the government is increasing.

Enforcement of law

Nobody is above the law. Is the Bangla proverb true? It is not, at least not in Bangladesh.

Deprived students

The letter entitled “Deprived Students” published on 5 April in this page drew my attention. Thanks to the anonymous students for writing it. I strongly support their demand. I was also a student of the chemistry department of Chittagong University and received my MS degree last year. Students of this department are not only deprived of all sorts of technological facilities but also practical knowledge, which is the key criterion in the job market. The laboratories of this department have no modern apparatus. Scarcity of essential chemicals and equipments are a very common phenomenon here. So what is the consequence? Students' research activities are badly affected and they complete their course without sufficient practical knowledge. As a result, they cannot survive in a job race. Can anybody believe that even without a UV-spectrometer, this department gives Ph.D certificate? Our research students pursue their task in BCSIR lab or elsewhere. Most of our teachers are indifferent in this regard.

International

Manmohan keeps option open for alliance with Left parties after polls

With all opinion polls pointing to a hung parliament, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh seems to be keeping ruling Congress party's option open for an alliance with Left parties after the Lok Sabha elections.

Indian voters brave militants, Maoists to cast their votes

For many Indian voters, casting their ballots yesterday was a gesture of defiance against militants, tribal guerrillas and Maoist rebels intent on disrupting the world's largest democratic exercise.

Fourth Front will help BJP by splitting secular votes: Pranab

Ridiculing its allies RJD, LJP and SP, which have formed the 'Fourth Front', Congress has said these parties would act as spoilers and help BJP by dividing the secular votes.

Lanka advances on rebels despite calls for truce

Sri Lanka said yesterday it had made fresh advances into the area still held by Tamil Tiger rebels, ignoring global calls for a truce to spare thousands of civilians trapped by the fighting.

IAEA inspectors quit N Korea

UN nuclear experts ordered to leave by North Korea amid an escalating standoff over the regime's recent rocket launch departed the country Thursday.

Pak tribal areas too violent, ungovernable to benefit from US aid: Kerryx

US Senator John Kerry is sceptical about the US aid being put to thwart the terror activities in the tribal areas of Pakistan as he considers the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) too violent and ungovernable to benefit from the financial assistance.

Obama calls for 'signal' from Cuba ahead of Latin America visit

President Barack Obama Thursday urged Cuba to show signs of change, as the United States and its communist neighbour work on warming up relations after a half century of strained Cold War ties.

Japan promises Pakistan up to one billion dollars

Japan promised up to one billion dollars in aid to Pakistan yesterday on the eve of a Tokyo donors meeting expected to raise at least four times that amount for the poor and crisis-riven country.

Lunchtime bombing kills 16 soldiers at Iraqi army base

A suicide bomber disguised in army uniform blew himself up at an Iraqi military base as soldiers queued for lunch yesterday, killing at least 16 troops and wounding 50, officials said.

Indian court appoints new lawyer for Mumbai attacks suspect

An Indian court yesterday appointed a new lawyer to represent the only Islamist militant suspect captured during last year's attacks on Mumbai.

Prachanda orders reinvestigation into 2001 royal massacre

Nepal's Maoist-led government is set to begin the reinvestigation into the controversial 2001 royal massacre of King Birendra and 10 members of his family after the coalition partners agreed to the constitution of a probe panel.

No military fix to Iran nuclear plans: Peres

The Israeli president has told President Barack Obama's Mideast envoy there is no military solution to the threat caused by Iran's nuclear programme and talk of Israeli plans to attack nuclear facilities there are "unfounded."

SC releases Varun Gandhi for 2 weeks

The Supreme Court on Thursday ordered the release of Bharatiya Janata Party leader Varun Gandhi on parole for a period of two weeks after it received an undertaking from him that he would not indulge in communally sensitive and hate speeches.

Ex-Thai PM Thaksin granted Nicaragua passport

Thailand's fugitive former leader Thaksin Shinawatra now has a Nicaraguan passport, complicating efforts to extradite him, as Thai authorities pressed ahead yesterday with a search for his supporters accused of leading violent riots in Bangkok.

Arts & Entertainment

Washing away the woes of the year gone by

The Marma community celebrated 'Sangrai" in Chittagong Hill Tracts with much enthusiasm and fanfare.

Baishakhi festivities go on apace

A 'Barsho-boron Probhati' programme was held at Judge Court Compound in Thakurgaon on the first day of the Bangla year 1416.

A touch of France

International French Drama Festival 2009, featuring eight popular French plays translated in Bengali, is on at the National Theatre Stage, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA). Inaugurated on April 12, the festival has been organised jointly by Alliance Française de Dhaka, Natukey Theatre Dhaka and Fame School of Dance, Drama and Music, Chitttagong. Supported by the French Embassy in Dhaka, this is the second International French Drama Festival.

Gender Mela

Uddog, a Dinajpur-based NGO, held a day-long mela, a cultural programme, an art competition for rural children and a discussion to bridge the gender gap which often leads to domestic violence in rural areas.

BTV to air Muktijuddher Itihash

To mark the Mujibnagar Day, BTV will air the acclaimed documentary "Muktijuddher Itihash" tonight after the 8pm news. The documentary was planned and directed by ATN Bangla chairman, Dr. Mahfuzur Rahman.

OP-ED

Economy off to a steady start

FROM day one of its assumption of office, the Mohajote Alliance, led by the Awami League, took a firm grip of the economy. At its very first cabinet meeting, fertiliser prices were halved and diesel price decreased by Tk 2 per litre. This reduced cost of cereal production by up to Tk 2.5 per kg. Boro cultivation, the mainstay for food security, received a boost with a message going out to the peasantry that it is in character with the new government to be friendly and caring to them.

Those ministers, after a hundred days

SOMETHING there is that we have learned from the Americans. And they of course got it from the late lamented John F. Kennedy. The first hundred days of a government, these Americans (and by now many non-Americans around the planet) believe, is a good hint of how it will fare in the future. If that is a good barometer for judging performance, why must we fall behind as the Awami League grand alliance completes a hundred days in office? Let us be judges too, not of the whole government as such but of some individual ministers insofar as their performance, or the lack of it, is concerned.

BDR incident -- an acid test for the government

WHILE one goes about assessing the government's performance in its one hundred days in office, no single issue with the potential of having grave impact on the country's integrity than the sad and despicable events of February 25 and 26 catches one's imagination more.

StarTech

Making digital Bangladesh: No time to waste

The present government took office with the vision of creating digital Bangladesh. There seems to be genuine interest for implementing the commitment made by the ruling party in its manifesto. Surely, it is an encouraging sign.

HP spotlights tech innovations

Hewlett-Packard (HP) Imaging and Printing Group arranged an informative session on technology update at Dhaka Sheraton Hotel on April 13. Over 170 corporate customers participated in the session.

US scientists plan greenhouses on the Moon

Astronauts' meals have come a long way from the freeze-dried powders and semi-liquid pastes of decades ago: now US scientists want to grow vegetables in mini-greenhouses on the Moon.

Double A paper now available at CSL outlets

The hassle people face to buy printer and paper from two different shops is set to disappear as from now on all the outlets of Computer Source Ltd (CSL) will have Double A paper for consumers.



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