The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Saturday, August 30, 2014


News of: Sunday, 26th of April, 2009

Front Page

Pollution gets to groundwater

River pollution around the capital has reached such a level that the groundwater system where the aquifers are recharged from the riverbeds is being contaminated, a recent study shows.

No more privatisation of SoEs

The government will no more privatise state owned enterprises (SoE), as successful bidders have not been using the divested SoEs for purposes they had promised, said Industries Minister Dilip Barua yesterday.

BBS projects 5.88pc GDP growth

Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) has projected 5.88 percent GDP growth in the current fiscal year (FY) which is higher than the estimates made by donor agencies including the World Bank (WB).

No to rushing war trial

Speakers at a seminar yesterday suggested that the government appoint at least 25 lawyers experienced in dealing with cases at international courts and 25 competent investigators to ensure a fair trial of the war criminals.

Over 33 militant outfits active

The number of active militant organisations in the country might be much higher than 12, which was earlier mentioned in a home ministry report, home ministry sources said.

PM discloses more plans for expatriates

Announcing a package of facilities for expatriates, Prime Minister (PM) Sheikh Hasina Friday said her government would try its best to remove all problems facing the Bangladeshi people working abroad.

Rights group worried at death of BDR men in custody

Expressing concern over custodial deaths of BDR member, Human Rights Watch (HRW), a New York based organisation, has urged the Bangladesh government to ensure protection of the detainees suspected of involvement in February 25-26 massacre at BDR Headquarters.

BNP reforms reeling from intra-party row

The process of reorganising the main opposition BNP is being obstructed by serious intra-party conflicts among its top leaders over formation of district committees as announcement of its district level convening committees remains stalled.

Farmers to get subsidy, rice price support

Agriculture Minister Matia Chowdhury yesterday said the government would provide farmers with both input subsidy and price support of rice to ensure food security in the country.

New force to man ZIA

The government has decided to form a separate force as part of precautionary measures against attacks of Islamist militants on the Zia International Airport (ZIA).

Govt leave proposed to be halved

The Pay Commission has made a number of recommendations for the government staff, including bringing their casual leave down to half.

Merry time for overloaded trucks

Overloaded vehicles especially goods-laden trucks now ply undeterred on the Bangabandhu Jamuna Bridge as the weigh stations on both sides of the bridge have remained inoperative for the last two months, posing risks to the bridge.

Taliban 'retreats' for peace deal

The Taliban said yesterday it had pulled back from a Pakistan district to shore up a peace deal as a US commander warned extremists were plotting more attacks to destabilise the country.

Fortune-seeking woman lured to Lebanon, sold to brothel

Brokers in Jessore lured Fulban to Lebanon in January this year with promises for a job with a salary of BDT 12,00 a month and once there, sold her to a brothel.

US calls for truce in Lanka right away

The UN's humanitarian chief was due in Sri Lanka yesterday as international concern over civilians trapped in the island's war zone fuelled a White House call for an immediate ceasefire.

One more dies from diarrhoea

One more person died in the capital from diarrhoea yesterday raising the number of deaths from the disease in the city to 29 in just two months.

Wildcat strike by Faridpur interns

The interns at the Faridpur Medical College Hospital (FMCH) went on an indefinite strike yesterday following a clash between hospital staff and the relatives of a patient over treatment.

ANC clinches S Africa polls

South Africa's ruling ANC swept general elections with just short of two-thirds of the vote, the final count showed yesterday, putting party leader Jacob Zuma at the doorstep to the presidency.

Chennai-Kolkata match rained off

Steady rain caused the abandonment of the Indian Premier League (IPL) match between Chennai Super Kings and Kolkata Knight Riders without a ball being bowled at Newlands Saturday.

Editorial

The endgame in Sri Lanka

THE enormity of the humanitarian tragedy now unfolding in Sri Lanka can only be imagined. In the last three months, as Sri Lanka's military has systematically pounded away at LTTE positions, as many as 6,500 Tamil civilians have lost their lives in the fighting. That is what a United Nations report reveals, confirming the grave predicament tens of thousands of Tamils have been in with the extent of the fighting shooting up to unprecedented levels of ferocity. It is now fairly obvious that Velupillai Prabhakaran's Tigers are on the verge of defeat and have nowhere to go. His fiefdom today shrunken to a mere strip of territory, Prabhakaran is either on the run or, as some think, already dead.

College admission in student cadres' grip

SELDOM do we have the opportunity of seeing the two major political parties, whose bitter rivalry has caused us great sufferings in the past, agreeing on any national issue. However, when it comes to exploiting opportunities, particularly those from which pecuniary benefits accrue, the two parties find common ground to work in complete accord. This happens as much at the national level as at local levels involving the party cadres.

Bailing out the economy

FOR quite some time we had been hearing about a bail-out program for the sectors hit hard by the economic recession. It is quite natural that Bangladesh not sit silent when almost all other countries are taking serious steps to save their affected sectors.

Changing times, changing minds

A farmer from Gaibandha, locally known as Helal Member, summed up a grave looming national crisis in simple words: “The price of what I have to buy is increasing, and the price of what I have to sell is decreasing.”

New parliament's first session

THE recently concluded parliamentary session appears to be ushering parliamentary democracy into Bangladesh. The lawmakers of the ninth parliament deserve commendation for making the people hopeful about parliamentary democracy in Bangladesh again. For successful completion of the session, special thanks go to the PM and the speaker who played pivotal roles in developing a friendly atmosphere among the government and the opposition members of the parliament.

Sports

Dido calls for patience

Bangladesh's football coach Edson Silva Dido has asked the people of the country to be patient and remain in support of the team as they take on Cambodia in their first Group A match of the AFC Challenge Cup at the Bangabandhu National Stadium today.

Tamim, Tk 7.7 lakh boy

Amid colours, deafening sounds and nonstop flashing of lights, auction of 48 cricketers for the country's first-ever Twenty20 tournament, the PCL (Port-city Cricket League) 2009, was held yesterday at Chittagong Club auditorium with dashing Tigers opener and local boy Tamim Iqbal stealing the show with a whopping Tk 7.70 lakh price.

First-ever Women's Club Cricket on

A new chapter in country's women's cricket opened when the Women's Club Cup tournament kicked off at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur yesterday.

Local Snippets

Despite Raihan's unbeaten 108, Farashganj were forced to tie their encounter against Kalindi in the second division cricket league at the Fatullah Cricket Stadium yesterday.

Deccan ride on Gibbs

A spinning masterclass from Pragyan Ojha and disciplined back-up from Venugopal Rao ensured Deccan Chargers consolidated their position at the top of the Indian Premier League (IPL) table with a 12-run victory over Mumbai Indians here on Saturday.

'Renew desert duel'

Famed paceman Waqar Younis Saturday said Pakistan should play arch-rivals India in the neutral venues of the United Arab Emirates after political tensions put home fixtures on hold.

Heat no worry

The scorching heat seems to be of no concern to any of the teams of Group A in the AFC Challenge Cup qualifiers that begin today at the Bangabandhu National Stadium.

Taibu cleared of charges

Tatenda Taibu has been acquitted of assaulting Zimbabwe Cricket's general finance manager. The Harare Magistrates' Court found "glaring inconsistencies" in the prosecution's evidence, describing it as discredited and unreliable.

U-15s fight out stalemate

Kaustav Sain and Mithilesh Das slammed hundreds on the final day of the two-day match between visiting CAB Under-15s and BCB Under-15s that ended in a draw at the Mymensingh Stadium yesterday.

Clarke aims high

Michael Clarke called Australia's performance "brilliant" in the win over Pakistan in the second ODI but the stand-in captain wants more from his team when the series switches to Abu Dhabi on Monday. The five-match contest is level at 1-1 following the encounters in Dubai, where Australia hit back after their disappointing opening loss.

ICC to help Pakistan

Cricket's governing body Saturday pledged support for cricket-deprived Pakistan after the troubled country was stripped of its share of 2011 World Cup matches because of security fears.

'Spin is king'

The emergence of spin as a match-turner in this IPL has surprised some of the best spinners in world cricket today but South African experts have seen it coming and say that spin will play a major role in Twenty20 cricket, and not just the Indian league.

'Fred's injury huge blow'

As Andrew Flintoff prepares for his latest trip to the operating table Kevin Pietersen, England's other million-dollar IPL star, admitted it was a massive blow for England, but said players can't be stopped for joined the event.

SL selection due tomorrow

The Sri Lanka Cricket Development team will arrive in Dhaka tomorrow to play the Academy Cup.

Real to appeal Pepe's ban

Real Madrid are planning to appeal the 10-match ban inflicted on their Portuguese international Pepe for his violent outburst against two Getafe players in a league game this week.

Modi asked to explain flight

Lalit Modi, the IPL commissioner, has been asked to explain his departure from India by the Rajasthan High Court which issued him an anticipatory bail after an NGO accused him of fraud.

MU in talks with Kaka

Manchester United are reported to have held talks with AC Milan playmaker Kaka over a potential summer move to Old Trafford as a replacement for Cristiano Ronaldo should the Portuguese leave for Real Madrid.

Wembley pitch to be dug up

The pitch at the new Wembley Stadium is to be dug up and replaced in the wake of damning criticism from Sir Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger, the Football Association confirmed Friday.

Gunners aim to extend run

The sight of Arsenal stretching every sinew in this week's thrilling 4-4 draw at Liverpool will have done nothing to lift the mood of Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate.

Fergie wants Tevez to stay

Sir Alex Ferguson has shrugged off Carlos Tevez's complaints about limited first team opportunities with Manchester United and insists he is optimistic that he will hold on to the Argentinian striker this summer.

Didar-Marma joint champs again

Marma Sing Tripura and Didarul Alam Didar once again jointly clinched the title of the hundredth show of 'Jabberer Boli Khela', the traditional wrestling competition, at the historic Laldighi Maidan in the port city yesterday, as both failed to get the better of the other.

Ibra eyes Spanish move

Inter Milan forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic says he is getting restless after five years with the Serie A giants and considering a move, with Spain his favoured destination.

Surfer Zafar travels to Hawaii

Bangladeshi surfer Zafar Alam, will have the opportunity to test his skills against the best in the world when he takes part in the two-month long International Freedom Surfing Contest at the island state of Hawaii next month.

PSG hold Lyon

Lyon's chances of an eighth successive French league title suffered another blow on Friday when they were held to a 0-0 draw by fellow championship hopefuls PSG.

Business

FBCCI redesigns stimulus demand

The Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI) yesterday demanded formation of a "financial crisis mitigation fund" to provide assistance to the sectors affected by fallout from the global recession.

Stocks pass upbeat week

The Dhaka market rose for a second week amid volatile trading with the key indices gaining in the first two days and declining in the rest three sessions.

Bangladesh pushes for continuing GSP

Commerce Secretary Feroz Ahmed has urged the United States Trade Representative (USTR) to terminate the Generalised System of Preference (GSP) review proceedings and continue to accord GSP facilities to Bangladesh to help the country develop and fight poverty.

G7 sees crisis begin to unwind by year-end

World finance officials meeting in Washington Friday said they expected the global economic crisis to begin to unwind by year-end, citing encouraging early signs of recovery.

Jute millers demand bank loan rescheduling arrangement

Jute Millers have asked the government for bank loan rescheduling arrangement so that they can reopen closed factories and boost employment.

Cut acrylic yarn import

Bangladesh can cut much of its import dependence on a sweater-making raw material, acrylic yarn, by making it locally, spinners said yesterday.

Crisis traps more in poverty: IMF, WB

The global economic crisis means up to 90 million more people will remain trapped in extreme poverty this year while the chronically hungry could top one billion, a World Bank/IMF report said Friday.

Session on business journalism held

An orientation session on business journalism was organised in Jessore yesterday in a bid to enhance the local journalists' understanding of trade financing, agricultural credit, use of ICT in banking sector and anti-money laundering issues.

IDB assures Hasina of dev assistance

Saudi-based Islamic Development Bank (IDB) President Dr Ahmad Mohamed Ali yesterday called on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, when Bangladesh's needs for development assistance were discussed.

Dairy traders protest poor sales

Several dairy traders in Chittagong, hurt by massive losses on poor sales, threw a huge quantity of milk onto the streets yesterday as a symbolic protest.

Foreign trade thru' Bibir Bazar landport remains suspended

Export and import through Bibir Bazar land port remained suspended following an indefinite strike enforced by Clearing and Forwarding (C&F) agents yesterday demanding car passing

Tourists flock to crisis-stricken Iceland

With Iceland's economic meltdown sending its currency into freefall, tourists who saw this remote North Atlantic island as prohibitively expensive are now flocking to its dramatic volcanic scenery.

SoE divestment to gain speed

The Privatisation Commission will expedite divestment of the state-owned enterprises (SoEs), as government's job is not to do business, but to regulate.

Ford sees light at the end of tunnel

Better-than-expected earnings from Ford raised hopes Friday that the automaker's restructuring and new products may be enough to spare it from a federal bailout, while General Motors received more government help and Chrysler raced to avoid bankruptcy.

China's gold reserves top 1,000 tonnes

China's gold reserves rose 75 percent from 2003 to 2008, state media said, reporting that Beijing now had the world's fifth largest holdings of the precious metal.

Wall Street upbeat

Amid growing signs of an easing of the economic crisis, Wall Street has managed to keep a mostly sunny outlook even though a six-week rally came to a halt.

Oil prices rebound

Oil prices jumped above 51 dollars on Friday, as a flagging dollar and rising stock markets offset concerns about weak demand arising from the global economic downturn.

Dollar trades lower

The dollar traded mainly lower Friday as a brighter mood on global financial markets sharpened risk appetite and limited moves into safe haven currencies.

Stress tests aim for capital 'buffer' for banks

The "stress tests" of major US banks will call for a capital buffer to help them withstand a worse-than-expected 3.3 percent economic contraction in 2009, the Federal Reserve said Friday.

MSFG wins priority in talks to buy Nikko from Citigroup

Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group (SMFG) has been granted preferential negotiating rights to buy Nikko Cordial Securities from US financial giant Citigroup, news reports said Saturday.

China bans foreign firms from express mail market

China's parliament has revised the nation's postal law in a move that will ban foreign delivery companies from handling domestic express mail, state press reported Saturday.

Former Facebook executive named MySpace CEO

Faced with the spectacular growth of Facebook, MySpace on Friday appointed a former top executive at its rival to head the social network.

Weekly Currency Roundup

April 19-23, 2009
International Markets:
The international markets continued to remain volatile this week. Uncertainty over ECB policy weighed heavily on the euro. However improvements in the German ZEW sentiment index and eurozone PMI have helped the euro to rebound. The latest provisional euro zone purchasing managers' surveys for April showed the indices for both the services and manufacturing sectors improved much more than expected, suggesting the region's deep recession is no longer worsening. The readings were their highest in six months, but the PMI indices remain well below the 50 level that divides growth from contraction. Other currencies viewed as higher risk such as sterling and the Australian dollar also recovered against the dollar on Thursday. Sentiment was helped by gains in US stock futures, while European equities were steady. Analysts said trade was tentative, however, with ongoing concerns about the global economy and the upcoming results of "stress" tests on US banks putting a lid on any rebound in riskier assets. The Wall Street Journal reported that US banks will be briefed by regulators as early as Friday on how they performed in the tests before the results are made public later. Some estimates of banks' likely losses that were used in the stress tests were tougher than expected, the newspaper said.

Metropolitan

Poverty alleviation a must to check human trafficking

Speakers at a workshop yesterday said poverty alleviation through employment generation and life skill development are the key to preventing human trafficking.

Traders dump milk in Ctg to protest low price

Several dairy farm traders at West Patiya under Patiya upazila here poured huge quantity of dairy milk onto the street yesterday protesting low price of milk.

Book on edn of visually impaired students launched

With a view to facilitating the education of visually impaired students, a book titled 'Visual Impairment and Education' was launched at Dhaka University (DU) yesterday.

7 killed in road accidents

Seven people, including an assistant railway engineer of Bangladesh Railway, were killed and two others injured in separate road accidents in Barguna, Barisal, Dinajpur, Chapainawabganj, Brahmanbaria, and Satkhira yesterday.

Nat'l security at stake under present govt

National security is at stake in the hands of the incumbent government, said the speakers at a roundtable yesterday.

BNP won't tolerate repression

BNP Secretary General Khandaker Delwar Hossain yesterday said his party would not tolerate repression on the opposition political parties by the government 'in the name of change'.

Mozammel elected Lions dist governor

Mozammel Haque Lalu, editor and publisher of the daily Karotoa, has been elected the district governor of the Lions Club International, District 315A2 Bangladesh, for 2009-10.

Heatwave, power outage make life miserable in Rajshahi

The scorching heat coupled with erratic power supply has crippled the life in Rajshahi and its surrounding districts.

Snatchers caught red-handed at Lalbagh

Two snatchers were caught red-handed by local people at Lalbagh in the city yesterday as their private car went out of order on the spot while fleeing the scene.

Govt mulls restoration of Newspaper Employees Act '74: Minister

Information Minister Abul Kalam Azad yesterday said the government plans to restore the Newspaper Employees (Condition of Services) Act 1974, subject to discussion in the next parliament session.

Khulna Day observed

The Khulna Day 2009 was observed here yesterday through different programmes.

Indian sarees worth Tk 1.15cr seized

Members of Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) yesterday seized Indian sarees worth about Tk 1.15 crore from Sadar Dakkhin upazila in Comilla.

ANZAC Day commemoration service held

The Australian High Commission here yesterday commemorated the 94th anniversary of ANZAC Day remembering Australian and New Zealand servicemen and women who died in wars and conflicts, including 29 buried in Commonwealth War Cemeteries in Bangladesh.

Sazzad, Humayun elected president, secy of JAFRU

Sazzad Hossain Shahin and FHM Humayun Kabir (Noyan) have been elected president and general secretary of the executive committee of Journalism Alumni forum of Rajshahi University (JAFRU).

Enact law to protect rights of domestic helps

Speakers at a press conference yesterday urged the government to enact a law to protect the rights and security of people working as domestic helps saying they are very unprotected and denigrated in the society.

Barisal medical college reopens tomorrow

Barisal Sher-e-Bangla Medical College (SBMC) reopens tomorrow after a 10-day forced closure following a factional clash of the ruling party's student wing Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL).

DU Career Club launched

Dhaka University Career Club and its website -- www.ducareerclub.org -- was launched at the Nabab Nawab Ali Chowdhury Senate Bhaban auditorium yesterday.

Ctg port to be upgraded to int'l standards

To keep pace with the international maritime trade and face challenges of the twenty-first century, Chittagong port would be upgraded to international standards through implementation of its various development projects.

4 held with firearms

Members of Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) arrested four criminals and seized three firearms and four bullets in the city early yesterday.

DU female student found dead

The body of a female student of Dhaka University was found hanging from a ceiling fan at her home at West Bhasantek in Kafrul in the capital on Friday.

World IP Day today

The World Intellectual Property Day will be observed in the country as elsewhere across the globe today to applaud the brains that create.

National

Ruet reopens today amid tight security, restrictions

Rajshahi University of Engineering and Technology (Ruet) reopens today amid tight security and restrictions imposed by the authorities on rallies, processions and activities of the student bodies.

NGO officials sued for 'cheating' job seekers

Police arrested one person following a case filed with Patkelghata Police Station yesterday, accusing three officials of a so-called NGO of defrauding scores of unemployed youths of more than Tk 10 lakh.

BCL, Shibir clash at Dinajpur medical

At least four students of Dinajpur Medical College were injured in a clash between the activists of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) and Islami Chhatra Shibir (ICS) on the campus yesterday.

Malaria still big threat to people in remote CHT

Malaria still remains as a big threat for public health in Rangamati, Bandarban and Khagrachhari hill districts as remote areas of the districts are out of reach of government and non-government health service providers, speakers said at seminars marking International Malaria Day yesterday.

Rajakar sued for killing in 1971

Bother of a martyred freedom fighter filed a murder case against a rajakar for killing his brother during the Liberation War.

Constable commits suicide, or killed?

Bullet-hit body of a police constable was found at the quarter of the commanding officer (CO) of Armed Police Battalion (APBN) in the city yesterday.

Death under steamroller

An employee of Khulna City Corporation (KCC) met tragic death as he fell from a steamroller while on duty for renovation work under Khulna City Corporation on Friday night.

Outlaw held with arms, bombs

Police arrested Alam Sheikh, a 'regional leader' of Biplobi Communist Party on Saturday and recovered from his possession two bombs, 6 bullets and a pipe gun at Sankarpasha village under Avoynagor upazila. Acting on a tip off, police raided the village and arrested Alam, 30. Hailing from Baghutia, outlaw Alam was wanted in half a dozen cases, police said.

Poppy seeds seized, one held

Police seized 60 kilograms poppy seeds and arrested a woman on charge of smuggling them in Chapainawabganj yesterday. Bulbuli Begum,30, wife of Tajebur Rahman is a resident of Horipur in the municipal area. A police team raided the house of Bulbuli around 12:30am Sunday, recovered the seeds and arrested her, said Officer-in-Charge of Sadar police station Ahsanul Haque.

Tiger kills honey collector

A tiger yesterday killed a honey collector at Dingimari in the Sundarbans. The incident took place when victim Abdul Mazid, 40, son of Mandar Sardar of village Burigoalini Dhalipara in Shyamnagar upazila along with others was collecting honey in the deep forest. Locals recovered the body, said the officer in charge (OC) of Shyamnagar police station.

Letters

Farmers' plight

The price of rice to the farmer for growing his crop is an important economic index for the country. The selling price of the rice grown by the farmers must provide him a reasonable return on investment. However, an analysis carried out by farmer Khandokar Abdur Rouf giving the detailed cost of raising the crop and its selling price was presented by S. Seraj of Channel i at a seminar on 11 April. This presents a very adverse and depressing situation. It will naturally discourage the planting of rice-- the staple food in Bangladesh!

Our favourite singer

Our music arena is swelling up with new artists and bands There are some bands with a real treat; some are struggling to reach a height. Music and lyrics have really scaled a good height in some bands' renditions and certain solo singers are also putting their mark on the track --- Habib, Bappa Majumder, Fuad and Tapu along with Juli, Anila, and Nancy, to mention a few.

Our natural wonders

We are aware that a campaign launched by new seven wonders foundation was going on in order to select seven new wonders of the world. Can we guess which one came first in the group G? Cox's Bazar!

People's expectations

As soon as this government came to power, we thought that at least this time around we would see a change in the political culture of our country and we believed that this time around the government would continue the anti-corruption drive initiated by the immediate past caretaker government.

Zebra crossing at Wari

After repeated requests, Dhaka City Corporation has kindly put Zebra crossing mark on Folder Street in Wari residential area at Sher-e-Bangla Girls School and Dawn Garments point.

Begum Zia's house

There has been a lot of talks, passing of opinions and hot debates between the pundits on both sides on the legality of lease and cancellation of lease etc., since the prime minister invited Begum Zia to return the government property in the cantonment, leased to her by the Ershad government.

Setting priorities

The mass people have given the mandate to them to govern this country for at least the next five years. If they can convince the people that they are capable enough to govern the state properly, of course people will bring you to power again. But through their unplanned activities if they make it clear that they have no faith on people and by occupying power they would like to hold it forever, the mass people of Bangladesh will not tolerate it.

Uncomfortable buses

For reducing traffic jams in Dhaka we have to take steps for total ban or less plying of smaller vehicles like rickshaws, cars, baby taxies etc. On the other hand, big buses have to be introduced in greater numbers. In fact, most people travel by buses in this capital city. There are some AC buses whose fares are comparatively high. To travel by a non-AC bus is definitely a bothersome matter, particularly during the summer.

PM's visit

If the prime minister of Bangladesh feels the need to visit another country (DS, April 20) to discuss some important issues, that is certainly understandable. But I am not sure if our PM really needs to take a 35-member delegation with her. This is Bangladesh, not America.

Concentrate on serious issues

I would like to bring these following things to the notice of the government regarding their present stance on issues like Pilkhana incident, shortage of power and water supply, BCL violence, traffic, and noise pollution. I wish the government would concentrate more on these serious issues rather than a petty issue like Khaleda Zia's house in the cantonment.

A good initiative

Brahmanbaria Sahittya Academy, a cultural organisation which has already passed a long path in 23 years, celebrated the Noboborsha (Bangla New Year) in a festive mood. This organisation arranged a week long fair & cultural programme on the premises of the Industrial School here. Many writers, artists, intellectuals, politicians and journalists were invited to this programme.

Job generation

The previous caretaker government launched the hundred days job generating scheme in order to create employment opportunity for vulnerable people, especially the extreme poverty ridden people of the northern region. At the outset, it generated employment on food for work basis. People of the poor community saw a light of hope initially, but ironically the elected representatives and government officials could not fulfil their expectations.

Prime minister's security

There is no denying that our prime minister's security is a matter of great concern. Many a time she was the target of direct attacks. The August 21 grenade attack was the most severe one. It was His kindness and sheer luck that saved her. Now, the terrorists are so desperate that the foreign secretary of a neighbouring country had to rush to Dhaka to ring the warning bell directly to her. We thank the Indian government for their very good neighbourly gesture. But the question remains can we all the time depend on the intelligence of a foreign country? Like many other things we should be self sufficient in collection of intelligence reports and other related matters. We should develop our own civilian intelligence agencies capable enough to protect our interests both internally and externally. This needs proper handling. The Cuban experience may be an example, where President Fidel Castro survived the onslaught of world's biggest power just sixty miles away from their coast. But please remember it should be a civil affair professionally crafted.

Dream of Digital Bangladesh

Digital Bangladesh is our dream, our weapon for changing the country, an expectation of people and a super vision of nation.

ACC

As an avid reader of your newspaper, I try to go through all your printed items seriously with feelings gyrating between admiration and scepticism. The same spirit drove me when I read the report entitled “Body formed to appoint another ACC Commissioner” that you front-paged.

Irresponsible doctors

In my life I have seen many physicians who help the helpless and poor people considering it their noble duty. I have great respect for them. But what I have seen tonight (April 20) on ntv is horrible. It showed that a ward boy was performing an eye operation and another lay person was performing operation in the microsurgery department at Dhaka Medical College Hospital. They did so because the doctors were absent. If I had the authority I would have cancelled the MBBS certificates of those physicians. In fact, those physicians are the worst enemies of the honest and dedicated physicians. This is very clear that those doctors committed a terrible wrong and they must be brought to justice even if they belong to the 'government party'. We are looking forward to the action the DMCH authorities (if it really has any authority) in this regard. Many poor patients go to the DMCH and in many cases they are not treated well. Before ignoring them the DMCH authorities and the section of physicians who ignore them must not forget that the poor people of this country have enormous contribution to our economy which helps us to survive.

Poor prioritisation

The present government envisions a Digital Bangladesh. It helped their campaign during the elections as it was highly praised by the masses. But, are we ready for it? The government's inability to supply electricity will do more harm than just foil this delusional mission and let me tell you why. My daily life in Dhaka consists of power-cuts that starts at 9 o'clock in the morning, recurs every alternate hour throughout the day, till 9 o'clock in the night. That would be about 6 hours of load shedding. Recently, there have been power cuts as late as midnight, making it impossible for me to sleep in the heat. The young people- the ones we usually call the future of the nation-- cannot have a smooth evening study session because of the power-cuts.

International

Tigers warn of starvation in Lanka war zone

Tens of thousands of civilians trapped in Sri Lanka's northern war zone are facing starvation, the Tamil Tiger rebels warned Saturday as the UN sent its top humanitarian official to assess the crisis.

Fear grips Pak district despite Taliban 'retreat'

"I have resigned. I will never go to my job as I don't want my parents to be sent my body," said a woman in a northwest Pakistan district from which the Taliban claimed to have withdrawn.

Pakistan presents 'proof' of Indian hand in terror acts

Interior Minister Rehman Malik has, during an in-camera session of the Senate, the upper house of parliament, presented what he termed evidence of the involvement of India, Afghanistan and Russia in terrorist activities in Pakistan, a media report Friday said.

Hillary assures Iraq of US support

US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton on Saturday assured Iraq that the Obama administration would not abandon the country even as it presses ahead with plans to withdraw American troops amid a recent surge in violence.

US accountable for tensions in Pakistan, says Hillary

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has acknowledged that the US too had a share in creating the problem that plagues Pakistan today, a media report said yesterday.

Gore, Gingrich debate the Earth's future

Al Gore paused during his descent from atop the Democratic stairs toward a witness table where he and an old rival, Newt Gingrich, were to debate the very future of Planet Earth. He glided over to a former aide and grinned.

Concern grows in Mexico, US over killer flu

Concern was on the rise in Mexico and the United States yesterday after officials in both countries took emergency steps to contain a new multi-strain swine flu that has killed up to 60 in Mexico, and infected eight in the United States.

I will refuse if offered PM's post now: Rahul

Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi said here Saturday that he would refuse the prime minister's post if the offer was made to him now because he was busy revamping the party and lacked the experience to take the top job.

N Korea has restarted nuclear facilities

North Korea has restarted its nuclear facilities to harvest weapons-grade plutonium, an official said Saturday, just hours after the UN imposed new sanctions on the communist state for its recent rocket launch.

Thai protesters hold new rally in Bangkok

Hundreds of anti-government protesters gathered for a rally in Bangkok Saturday, a day after the prime minister lifted a state of emergency imposed amid violent demonstrations earlier this month.

20 dead as police clash with rebels in Iran

Twenty people were killed in clashes between rebels and Iranian police in the Kurdish-majority western province of Kermanshah, state television reported on Saturday.

'Life on other planets could be found within 10 years'

A University of Arizona professor, who led Nasa's Phoenix Mars Mission, has said that within 10 years life will be found outside Earth.

Arts & Entertainment

Shohel Khan: The actor with panache

Actor Shohel Khan has won the hearts of thousands for his superb performance as a Razakar (Bengali collaborator of the Pakistani army during our Liberation War) in a movie. The film in question "Amon Deshti Kothau Khu(n)je Pabey Nako Tumi," has been directed by the popular Mostofa Sarwar Farooki. It is the sequel to an acclaimed cinematic work by Farooki, titled "Spartacus 71." Both the films feature Shohel Khan, an actor who slips into many a role with ease.

Daab-Bagan massacre recalled in Pabna

'Folder Kobita Patra,' a literary magazine of Pabna, recently launched a documentary video CD of the history of Daab-Bagan massacre. The Daab-Bagan incident is significant in our Liberation War. Over 200 people, mostly Freedom Fighters, were martyred during a combat at the site on April 19, 1971. The Daab-Bagan (coconut grove) is in the village Shahidnagar, in Santhia upazila, Pabna district.

Lalita: New drama serial on Ekushey TV

New drama serial "Lalita" begins tonight on Ekushey TV at 9:30pm. Based on a story by Abdus Salam, the serial is scripted and directed by Jewel Mahmud. A production of Ekushey TV, the serial's cast includes Sumaiya Shimu, Joyonto Chattopadhyay, Anisur Rahman Milon, Bannya Mirza, Elora Gauhar, Pran Roy, Joyraj and Misha Saudagar.

TV serial Lucky Thirteen on Banglavision

TV serial "Lucky Thirteen" will be aired tonight on Banglavision at 8:15pm. Written by Shafayet Mansur Rana, the serial is directed by Redwan Roni.

Baishakhi mela held in Jhenidah

A 10-day Baishakhi mela to celebrate Pahela Boishaikh 1416 concluded recently in Jhenidah. The mela was organised by Kaliganj upazila chairman Anwarul Anar. The venue was the Bhusan pilot secondary school ground.

Poetry book launched in Dinajpur

“Aka Thakar Akangsho', a book of poetry by Azad Kalam, was unveiled recently at Naborupee in Dinajpur. The book was published at the Ekushey Book Fair in Dhaka this year.

OP-ED

The Muslim World conundrum

AMONG the topics that President Obama touched in his inaugural speech was his message to the "Muslim World," where he asked for "a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect." The media in US, as well as the rest of the globe, not only highlighted this as a major point of departure for a US presidential speech, but also reported the reactions of the "Muslim World."

The Tibetan paradox

TIBET continues to generate a debate around the world for many reasons. Starting from plight of the Dalai Lama to economic development that has taken place during the Chinese rule, Tibet remains an enigma as well as one of the most serene and tranquil piece of land in the world.

Reminiscing Osman Ghani Khan

SOON after the liberation of Bangladesh and Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman's return from prison in Pakistan, he appointed my father Late Osman Ghani Khan as the first Secretary of the Ministry of Defence in 1972. It was a time when vital issues remained to be resolved and the tasks ahead for the new defence secretary were critical.


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