The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Saturday, December 20, 2014


News of: Monday, 27th of April, 2009

Front Page

All Dhaka rivers left 'dead'

Soft attitude of the government towards polluters and lack of awareness among city dwellers have literally left dead all the rivers and other surface waters in and around the capital.

Dhaka gone crazy

Life in the capital has become utterly miserable over the last ten days due to a severe heat wave accompanied with repeated load shedding, an acute water crisis, shortage of gas supply, infestation of mosquitoes, and the resultant near epidemic of diseases like diarrhoea.

Tk 14 for paddy, Tk 22 for rice

The government has fixed the procurement prices of per kg Boro paddy at Tk 14 while rice at Tk 22 to encourage farmers and protect their interest.

Quick bucks out of crisis

Wasa water has become a source of quick bucks for some dishonest government employees in the wake of unbearable water crisis in the capital, allege a number of city dwellers.

Students down under look down the barrel

About 6,000 Bangladeshi students brace for bad times as recession strikes Australia and starts to bite deeper into a once solid economy of a paltry 21.7 million population.

Industrial cops in 3 months

Formation process of industrial police force would be completed within next three months to maintain peace and discipline in apparel sector for which all procedures already have been finalised.

Recession to bring food crisis back

The food crisis that hit many developing countries last year is likely to re-emerge following the recession and Asian countries must take measures to protect poor people from rising prices, a UN report said Friday.

PM calls for action

Prime Minister (PM) Sheikh Hasina yesterday directed the power division and Dhaka Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (Wasa) to act expeditiously in reducing sufferings of the people caused by ongoing water and power crisis.

3 Bangladeshi teachers killed in Saudi road accident

Three Bangladeshi lecturers of King Khaled University were killed and two others injured in a tragic road accident at Doadmi, 328-km northwest of Riyadh last Friday.

72 more BDR men shown arrested

Seventy-two more suspected Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) mutineers were shown arrested yesterday and 10 of them were placed on a five-day remand each.

Caretaker govt system not a must to hold fair polls

Election Commissioner Brig Gen (retd) Sakhawat Hossain yesterday said the caretaker government system is not a must for holding the parliamentary election in a free and fair manner.

JS body for bluebooks for rickshaws

The parliamentary standing committee on home ministry yesterday made several recommendations including introduction of bluebooks for rickshaws and vans in the city.

Move to drop 10 'political' cases against Hasina

The public prosecutor (PP) has appealed for withdrawal of 10 'political' cases filed against the Awami League (AL) President and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

Hasan rights Dipu Moni's wrong

State Minister for Foreign Affairs Dr Hasan Mahmud yesterday admitted that former premier Khaleda Zia had met with Saudi King Abdullah in 2005, apparently correcting Foreign Minister Dipu Moni's statement that the monarch's audience with Prime Minister (PM) Sheikh Hasina was the first in seven years.

Atiur made BB boss

Noted economist and Dhaka University teacher Dr Atiur Rahman is going to be appointed governor of Bangladesh Bank.

Govt to appoint large team for war trial

The government has decided to have a large body to investigate the war crimes committed in 1971.

She goes for risky abortion, meets death

A woman died from illegal abortion at a clinic in the city's Pallabi area early yesterday.

Govt shuts CUFL to better power

The government yesterday shut down the operation of Chittagong Urea Fertiliser Ltd (CUFL) for an indefinite period to help increase supply of power.

Convict Azad granted leave to appeal

The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday granted the leave to appeal of Syed Sajjad Mainuddin Hasan alias Azad, one of the convicts awarded death sentence in the sensational Shazneen murder case, against the High Court (HC) verdict confirming his death penalty.

NSI officer remanded

A Chittagong court yesterday placed National Security Intelligence (NSI) field-level officer Akbar Hossain Khan on a seven-day fresh remand in a case filed in connection with the sensational Chittagong arms haul.

Govt to train people as per job demands

Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid said yesterday the government would take steps to train people according to the demands in the job market to create a strong manpower resource.

Asia on alert after swine flu outbreak

Asian health authorities were on alert yesterday, with some checking passengers and pork products from Mexico, as the World Health Organisation declared the deadly swine flu outbreak a public health emergency of "pandemic potential."

Sri Lanka rejects rebel ceasefire

Sri Lanka yesterday rejected a ceasefire declared by Tamil Tiger rebels, as the United Nations said the ongoing fighting was preventing essential aid from reaching thousands of trapped civilians.

Iran to back ME peace deal

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said it would be "fine with us" if the Palestinians reach a "two state" peace deal with Israel, despite his opposition to the "racist" Jewish nation.

Republicans still struggling at Obama 100-day mark

President Barack Obama's Republican foes are still struggling to find their voice and shed the "party of no" label, 100 days after he took over the White House and launched his audacious agenda.

Afghan blasts, bullets kill 14

Fourteen people, including 11 policemen, were killed in shootings and explosions across insurgency-plagued Afghanistan, authorities said Sunday.

Second win for Punjab

Kumar Sangakkara and Yusuf Abdulla turned in star performances as Kings XI Punjab ran to a 27-run win over Rajasthan Royals in their Indian Premier League Twenty20 match at Newlands in Cape Town yesterday.

Editorial

Now, it is groundwater pollution

THE extent of pollution seeping into our rivers is mind-boggling and has been that way for years together. If there ever was any hope that remedial measures would be taken to deal with the problem, it now seems that hope was belied. That much becomes clear through a front-page report in this newspaper yesterday. Pollution in the rivers has reached such an alarming point that now even the groundwater system is getting contaminated. That is most distressing, given that aquifers are recharged from the riverbeds and the water is then made available to the population. Our report, based on the findings of a survey carried out jointly by the World Bank and the Institute of Water Modelling (IWM), points up the dilemma we have before us. We either let the pollution take wider swathes of our rivers or we take decisive action against all those individuals and elements responsible for the degradation of the rivers.

Deaths of BDR men in custody

WE express our deep concern over the deaths of some BDR personnel in the custody of the various law enforcing agencies. The issue is important on two counts: one, we are talking about human life; two, we are talking about the image of the country. Bangladesh has an empowered and functional judicial system that can take care of such crimes. Therefore, in no way, extra-judicial measures can be given a blank cheque by anybody. To be candid, unusual deaths of suspects in custody is an endemic problem in this country. Therefore, the explanation of the deaths of BDR men given by representatives of the security forces do not always sound credible enough. Such deaths remind us of the old issue of custodial deaths under the past governments, which have been widely criticised by the people of this country, including this daily. Despite repeated urging, no government launched a vigorous investigation to unearth the truth behind such unwarranted deaths in police custody.

It's law and order, stupid!

LAW and order in Bangladesh has seldom been good. But never before has it been so bad as now. On earlier occasions, we could at least indulge in wishful thinking that things would improve, our law enforcing agencies would come of age, and, above all, the people at the helm would mature enough to rid us of the menace.

Reinventing political Islam

ONCE upon a time Islamic civilisation was a bastion of intellectual debate and freedom of thought. It pioneered algebra and spherical trigonometry, the concept of zero, public hospitals, public libraries and academic degree-granting universities. It gave the world innovative surgical and astronomical instruments, ushered in a scientific revolution in optics and helped lay the foundations of modern medicine.

Sher-e-Bangla: A point of reference

ABUL Kashem Fazlul Huq lived what many would consider a rich, fulfilling life. Born on October 26, 1873, he breathed his last in Dhaka on April 27, 1962. It is said that the last four years of his life were spent in physical agony, and yet, Sher-e-Bangla, as he has come to be known in history, was one of the pre-eminent Bengali politicians whose entire life was given over to the service of his people.

Sports

Hosts ride on Enamul

A late strike from Enamul Haque gave Bangladesh a much-needed winning start in the AFC Challenge Cup qualifiers at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.

New look Academy

A new look GP-BCB National Cricket Academy is all set to take on the visiting Sri Lanka Cricket Development Squad who arrive in the capital today on a three-week tour.

Myanmar maul Macau

Myanmar showed why they are tipped as the team to beat when they thrashed Macau 4-0 in the opening game of the AFC Challenge Cup Group-A qualifiers at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.

Local Snippets

A four-wicket haul from Chamely Khatun helped Ansar & VDP to a 17-run win over Mohammedan Sporting Club in the first-ever Women's Club Cup match at the City Club ground yesterday.

Dilshan smacks B'lore

Tillakaratne Dilshan smashed a quickfire half-century to power Delhi Daredevils to a six-wicket win over Bangalore Royal Challengers in the Indian Premier League here on Sunday.

OCA chief due tomorrow

President of the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) Sheikh Ahmed Al Fahad Al Sabah arrives in the capital on Wednesday on a brief unofficial visit.

'Great to be back'

Exiled Andrew Symonds capped his international comeback with useful allround contributions in Australia's win in the second match against Pakistan on Friday, saying it gave him belief he can still excel.

Clash over cricket hurts 12!

At least twelve people were injured in a clash between supporters of two clubs over a cricket match at Bara Ballavpur here on Friday.

Ajmal reported for odd action

Saeed Ajmal, the Pakistan offspinner, has been reported for a suspect bowling action. Asad Rauf and Asoka de Silva, the umpires for the second ODI between Pakistan and Australia in Dubai on Friday, said they had concerns over Ajmal's action and hence requested the ICC to review his action.

One-captain theory

The game of cricket has an amazing capacity to voice an opinion in subtle ways. It did so in the frenetic confrontation that followed the first ever IPL tie.

Onus on fast men

Pakistan coach Intikhab Alam urged his pace spearheads to provide early breakthroughs to keep Australia to a low score in the third one-day international here on Monday.

Onus on fast men

Pakistan coach Intikhab Alam urged his pace spearheads to provide early breakthroughs to keep Australia to a low score in the third one-day international here on Monday.

Hauritz relishes contest

Australian off-spinner Nathan Hauritz said Sunday said he was relishing the challenge of bowling against Pakistan's batsmen, who were adept at playing slow bowlers.

Jamshed pulls out of tour

Pakistan opener Nasir Jamshed will return home after pulling his hamstring in the first match of the one-day series against Australia, team manager Yawar Saeed said Sunday.

Indian duo sent home

Kolkata Knight Riders have asked the senior pair of Aakash Chopra and Sanjay Bangar to return to India since they do not fit in the present "scheme of things". The decision was taken after discussions between coach John Buchanan and the team management and while the players were not "happy" they accepted the decision. Both Chopra and Bangar, along with a few injured players will board a flight from Cape Town on Monday.

Henry rescues point

Barcelona dropped two vital points in the Spanish title race on Saturday in a 2-2 draw at Valencia where substitute Thierry Henry grabbed a late equaliser.

Comeback MU style

Wayne Rooney claimed a third Premier League title was Manchester United's to throw away after his man-of-match display helped the champions mount a second-half rally to beat Tottenham 5-2 on Saturday.

Fiorentina rout Roma

Fiorentina eased past Roma 4-1 on Saturday to take another confident step closer to Champions League qualification.

Bayern lose to Schalke

Bayern Munich captain Mark van Bommel admitted his side's hopes of catching leaders Wolfsburg, and defending their Bundesliga title, were dented on Saturday when they lost 1-0 at home to Schalke 04.

Bordeaux's third crown

A clinical first-half showing from title-chasing Bordeaux inspired them to a 4-0 victory over underdogs Vannes in the French League Cup final at the Stade de France here on Saturday.

Wembley row claims groundsman

The row over the state of Wembley's pitch has claimed a high profile victim in the shape of the national stadium's ground manager Steve Welch who was sacked on Saturday.

Zola signs extension

West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola signed a new four-year contract with the Premier League club on Saturday.

Heartbreak for Jagielka

Everton defender Phil Jagielka was on Saturday ruled out of the FA Cup final against Chelsea because of a knee injury.

Wenger sees downturn

Arsene Wenger believes that the economic crisis and Britain's new 50 percent income tax rate will seriously stem the influx of foreign stars to the English Premier League.

Arsenal see off Boro

Arsenal will head into their Champions League clash with bitter rivals Manchester United on the back of a 20 game unbeaten run after Cesc Fabregas ended Arsene Wenger's wait for a win over Middlesbrough by scoring twice in Sunday's 2-0 success here at the Emirates.

Three in four for Button

Jenson Button claimed his third win in four races this year and the fourth of his career when he triumphed for Brawn GP in Sunday's Bahrain Grand Prix.

Business

Crisis management fund on cards

Finance Minister AMA Muhith yesterday assured the business community of forming a crisis management fund in the upcoming national budget to provide quick financial assistance to the entrepreneurs hurt by the ongoing global financial recession.

Stimulus package puzzles leather industry

The leather industry is reeling under a shadow of uncertainty and confusion over the government's stimulus package announced last week, as the package has generalised 'leather and leather goods' for the cash incentive.

Rice price fixing raises mixed reactions

The prices of un-husked boro rice at Tk 14 and rice at Tk 22 a kilogram, fixed by the government for public procurement, come as news to the farmers who get good productivity, but bad for those who get less, agronomists and farmers said yesterday.

World finance ministers wary over economy

Finance ministers see signs the global economy is stabilising but are cautioning it will take until the middle of next year for the world to emerge from the worst recession in decades.

Call for listing illegal recruiting agencies

Manusher Jonno Foundation (MJF) demanded yesterday that the government make a list of illegal recruiting agencies in the country to mitigate the sufferings of the migrant workers and safeguard them from being cheated.

IMF relevant again

Not long ago the International Monetary Fund seemed headed for relic status. Now it's once more flying high, rolling out ambitious plans to blanket an economically distressed world in dollars. Even grander designs are on the drawing board.

Cash registers ring across Australia

Cash registers are ringing across Australia as more than seven million economically-stimulated consumers raise their wallets in thanks for "manna from Kevin."

Seed fair kicks off tomorrow

A three-day fair is set to begin in the capital tomorrow with an aim to popularise hybrid seed cultivation as a means to achieve food security amid growing population and declining arable land.

Asian currencies mixed

Asian currencies were mixed against the US dollar last week as disappointing news from the US was balanced by local conditions.

Fed to stay aggressive, but prepare for recovery

The Federal Reserve is likely to maintain its aggressive efforts to lift the US economy out of deep recession but also seek to lay the groundwork for a potential recovery, analysts say.

Remittance fair begins in port city

A three-day remittance fair began in the port city yesterday.

French business team in city

A French business delegation of textile machinery manufacturers arrived in Dhaka on Saturday in a three-day mission, said a statement.

Nationalised Northern Rock bank to be sold this year

State-owned British bank Northern Rock will be sold before the end of the year, the Sunday Times newspaper reported, without citing its source.

Novartis marks Community Partnership Day

Novartis Bangladesh Ltd has recently joined hands with Novartis AG to celebrate its International Community Partnership Day, an annual voluntary event by the company to benefit people in local communities.

Japan may make early exit from recession

Japan, one of the biggest victims of the global economic downturn, may also be one of the first countries to exit recession as its stricken export engine sputters back to life, analysts say.

Fortunes of UK super-rich dwindle amid crisis

The economic downturn has wiped billions off the fortunes of some of the richest people in Britain including Lakshmi Mittal and Roman Abramovich, according to a respected survey out Sunday.

Rough economy threatens Zuma's promises for SAfrica

Jacob Zuma led his African National Congress to election victory with sweeping promises to help the nation's poor, but will enter office with little room to manoeuvre due to a faltering economy.

Asia, Middle East call for limits on energy speculation

Major oil-producing and consuming nations in in the Middle East and Asia called for limits on speculation in the energy industry as they ended a one-day dialogue here Sunday.

Metropolitan

University to be set up in Rangamati: Minister

A public university will be set up in Rangamati to facilitate higher education for indigenous people living in the Chittagong Hill Tracts region, said Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid at a seminar yesterday.

Allocate 6pc GNP for education sector

Experts at a consultation yesterday suggested the government allocate at least six percent of gross national product (GNP) for education sector to achieve the education for all (EFA) target by 2015.

Probe body blames ship owner, master for vessel capsize in Ctg

The probe committee formed to investigate the vessel capsize in the estuary of the Karnaphuli on April 21 has found a number of faults and negligence of vessel owner and master that led to the accident.

HC quashes arms cases against Dipjol, his wife

The High Court (HC) yesterday quashed two arms cases against film actor and Dhaka City Corporation (DCC) ward councillor Monwar Hossain Dipjol, in which he was sentenced in absentia to 24 years' imprisonment by the trial court.

No more election under old laws

Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) ATM Shamsul Huda has said the Election Commission (EC) is no more interested in holding election using old laws.

3 killed, 41 injured in road accidents

Three people were killed and 41 others injured in separate road accidents in Madaripur and Pabna yesterday.

'Promote environmentally sustainable transport'

Promoting environmentally sustainable transport (EST) is a must to mitigate adverse environmental and health impact in the city, said the speakers at a national workshop and policy dialogue yesterday.

JS body takes step to resolve 27th BCS exam issue

A parliamentary standing committee at a meeting yesterday formed a sub-committee to find out a way to resolve the 27th BCS examination issue in line with the prime minister's assurance given to its candidates who were dropped from the list of successful candidates.

Slum dwellers vandalise 20 vehicles near Bangabazar

Some agitated dwellers of Babupura slum vandalised over 20 vehicles in front of Bangabazar in the city yesterday over money transaction between a trader and a slum dweller.

Camel jockeys to get compensation next month

Bangladeshi children used as camel jockeys will be given compensation next month as the United Arab Emirates government has completed its final list of such children on March 15.

FM leaves for Norway today

Foreign Minister Dipu Moni leaves Dhaka for Norway this morning on a three-day official visit.

30 shanties gutted in Agargaon fire

At least 30 shanties burned down in a devastating fire at a slum at Agargaon BNP Bazar the city last night.

JS body asks hajj agencies to explain irregularities

A parliamentary standing committee at a meeting yesterday decided to summon officials of Hajj Agencies Association of Bangladesh (HAAB) and the government officials concerned to explain various irregularities in hajj management.

BNP dismisses FM's statement as untrue

BNP yesterday dismissed Foreign Minister Dipu Moni's statement as untrue.

Death anniversary of Sher-e-Bangla today

Today is the 47th death anniversary of noted politician and social worker Sher-e-Bangla AK Fazlul Haque.

Int'l cooperation a must to combat terrorism

Australian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Dr Justin Lee yesterday said here that international cooperation for combating terrorism is an imperative as terrorists frequently communicate and operate across international borders.

Court asks both parties to maintain status quo

A Dhaka court yesterday asked both the parties of a suit relating to a land dispute to maintain status quo for the next 25 days on the land where the BNP central office is located.

Fire in N'ganj textile mills

Valuables worth about Tk 1.5 crore were gutted in a fire at Prime Textile Mills at Pagla in Narayanganj yesterday.

10 robbers arrested in Gazipur

Police arrested 10 members of an inter-district gang of robbers from Konabari Ambagh area in Sadar upazila on Saturday night.

NSI officer on fresh remand

A court here yesterday granted a fresh seven-day remand for National Security Intelligence (NSI) field officer Akbar Hossain in the 2004 sensational 10-truck arms haul case.

Mugger held with Tk 2.76 lakh, firearms in Ctg

Two traffic police of Chittagong Metropolitan Police aided by locals caught one of the four muggers at Saraipara Nayabazar under Pahartali Police Station yesterday with their booty of Tk 2.76 lakh, two firearms and a machete.

Canadian envoy meets Hasan Mahmud

Canadian High Commissioner Robert Mcdougall met State Minister for Foreign Affairs Hasan Mahmud at the foreign ministry in the city yesterday afternoon.

265 arrested in special drive

Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) arrested 265 people on various charges and seized firearms and stimulating drugs from different parts in the city yesterday, the third day of its special drive.

1,030 Phensidyl bottles seized

Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) seized 1,030 bottles of Phensidyl syrup from a truck on Khulna-Satkhira highway in Dumuria upazila yesterday morning.

Appeal for help

Nahem, a one and a half-year-old boy, has been suffering from heart disease since his birth, says a press release.

Programme for child domestic helps held

A daylong programme for child domestic helps was organised on the T&T colony playground in the city on Saturday.

National

RU Shibir threatens to 'try' killers of Nomani on campus

The activists of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) and Islami Chhatra Shibir (ICS) yesterday placed some demands before the Rajshahi University authorities to meet them before reopening of the university.

Memorial bears all signs of neglect

Local people will observe 'Kaliganj massacre day' today in memory of the 300 innocent people killed by the Pakistani occupation army on this day during the Liberation War.

Power crisis in Khulna Zone likely to drag on

There is no hope of early relief from power crisis for the people of Khulna Zone as four of the six power generating plants under Khulna Power Station (KPS) need replacement for resuming their production.

UP chairmen boycott MP's meet

The first upazila law and order meeting could not take place as 15 out of 18 elected members did not turn up citing 'lack of security.'

Pabna schoolteacher stabbed

Miscreants stabbed a schoolteacher yesterday at village Bonkola in Sujanagar upazila when he was going to his workplace at 9 in the morning. Kamruzzaman alias Badsha of Bonkola Primary School was shifted to Dhaka Pongu Hospital from local hospital as his condition deteriorated, doctors said. No case was filed till filing of this report yesterday.

Touchstone recovered, 2 held

Nagarkanda police yesterday recovered a touchstone and a terracotta from a house at Atal village of Dangi union under Nagarkanda upazila. Two persons were arrested for illegally keeping the statue of Radha and terracotta of Bishnu. An arrestee told police that they collected them from the labourer who found the precious antiques while digging a pond near Atal Pashchim Para mosque.

Fake cosmetics factory unearthed

A mobile team of law enforcers yesterday unearthed a fake cosmetic factory at Balashpur in the town and arrested two people in this connection. The team raided a house and seized a huge quantity of fake raw materials of cosmetics and other consumer items and labels of different popular cosmetic0020companies, police said.

Bombs hurled at police office

Unidentified miscreants exploded two bombs on the premise of Community Policing Office at Mohammodnagar under Batiaghata Police Station. The bombs were hurled from a motorbike. On-duty patrol police chased the bike but could not arrest anyone, said OC Abdus Salek of Batiaghata Police Station.

10 houses gutted in Comilla

Ten houses were gutted leaving around 50 people homeless and 10 injured at Taguria village in Chandina upazila yesterday morning. Most of the dwellers were asleep when the fire broke out. The fire originated from a kitchen at about 4:00am and immediately engulfed the adjacent houses, locals said. Two fire-fighting vehicles from the upazila station went to the spot and put out the fire.

Truck with fake TSP sinks

A truck, allegedly carrying spurious fertiliser sank in the Bhoirob river when trying to flee mob attack in Abhoinagor upazila yesterday. Mob, however, caught Mosharraf, helper of the truck and handed him over to police but the driver managed to flee. Police and local people said, the truck loaded with 300 bags of adulterated TSP was waiting to cross Bhatpara ferryghat. As people chased the truck it lost control over the wheel and fell into the river. Later, police recovered 203 bags of adulterated fertiliser from the truck.

Criminal held with arms

Army personnel arrested a criminal with one shotgun and two bullets at Aamtolipara under Alikadam upazila yesterday morning. Nurul Islam, 28, who was caught red-handed during a raid was involved in criminal activities in the area for a long time, police said.

Sacked Mongla dockers warn of fresh agitation

The sacked dockers of Mongla Port will go for fresh agitation from May 1 if their five point demands are not met by April 30.

Water-borne diseases spreading in Sirajganj

At least 200 people were attacked with diarrhoea, pneumonia, jaundice and other water-borne diseases in nine upazilas in last three days.

Letters

Unbearable load shedding

Frequent power outage has made the life of the people all over the country extremely miserable, to say the least. Due to the inability of PDB to provide the required amount of electricity to the people, the load shedding is a familiar phenomenon for all of us for quite a long time now and we are used to it by some extent as well! But the manner in which the load shedding is happening these days has broken all the records of the past. The PDB has to cut the electricity in almost each alternate hour digitally in every locality due to the huge shortfall of power. They are blaming the previous governments and many other factors like shortfall of gas and illegal electricity connections for this present horrible condition. But this blame game will not ease the woes of the sufferers. Once there was a time when we used to tackle the load shedding by using generators and IPS. But those days are gone by now. Since the IPS does not get the required time to recharge due to regular power cuts, so how could it supply electricity every hour? And generators are also running out of oil due to frequent power cuts.

Dhaka today

During and much before the 1960's Dhaka was a quiet city or town where people used to know more or less everyone and the city had separate areas for living, working and entertainment!

Why in South Africa?

It is strange and a cause for dismay to note that our neighbour, India, is holding the Indian Premier League (IPL) in far away South Africa, instead of their own country, where it indeed should be held. With India having the fourth largest army in the world and a strong para-military force to boot, it is rather inexplicable.

Brick export

The good news is that our neighbouring state of Tripura in India is going to get bricks from Bangladesh worth Taka 200 crore as quoted by the President of India-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce & Industries (IBCCI). Very encouraging newsflash indeed, especially at a time when global economic situation is in doldrums.

Electrification and GDP

The Star Business report on April 16, states that an economist has said that the increase in electrification in Bangladesh will increase the GDP.

100 days of AL govt

An opinion poll survey of The Daily Star-Neilsen shows that the Awami League-led government enjoys an encouraging public support in their policies & actions in price control, economic management, and its handling of BDR carnage. The survey also indicates poor or low performance of the government in its handling of students activities and management of the administration and the judiciary.

Deep seaport

This is a very important development project for Bangladesh in the long-term perspective. At this juncture, while we have been struggling with many critical internal problems to solve, we need to think deeply about its immediate viability and effectiveness.

Diarrhoea outbreak

The number of diarrhoea patients is increasing day by day. Every day about 1000 people come to the ICDDR,B . The hospital cannot accommodate such a huge number of patients.

Campus politics

Every student feels proud of his own campus. To get extra benefits, students try to be part of politics. So, they follow a political party of their own choice and become members of the student front of that particular party. When that political party is in power, the student activists create anarchy on the campus to dominate over other students or to harass the followers of opposition parties.

IPL and power failures

Indian Premier League is one of the most enjoyable cricket tournaments in the world. This T20 format has become immensely popular since its introduction in 2008 and it took the attention of the whole world. Finally, it's here. The moment we all have been waiting for. The stadiums are packed, the television is set, and billions of fans wait expectantly for the South African curtains to rise. The masses go hysterical; unfortunately it is a different scenario in Bangladesh. Despite people's great interest we are unable to watch the games due to the recently added agony of the citizens-- 'Load shedding', it has broken all records and we are plunged into darkness when these games are being played. It is so painful that you do not even feel like watching the rest when the electricity is back. We are becoming so used to this poor electricity supply that we hardly talk against it these days.

Fake doctors?

Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH) is a centre of creating good doctors and it is also a healing centre. Most of the people, especially middle class or lower class people of our country, visit the DMCH. We regard it as an ultimate centre of medicare.

The house at Mainul Road

Though living far away from home, I keep monitoring all the events in the country. I sincerely hope that the ex-PM, Begum Khaleda Zia will leave the house honourably before being evicted forcefully. I would like to present three good reasons for my expectation:

Landmark decision

We do admire the decision of the government on reducing fees and one stop service in land registration. The present government, out of many action plans, took a wise and beneficial decision for both the common people and the government in terms of disclosing facts and better revenue collection as well.

What is going on?

The massive reshuffle in civil administration conducted by the present AL-led grand alliance in the first 100 days of their assuming power has worried us. Though it is not a new practice in our country, but people hardly know the actual purpose. The rearrangement in various steps has created an atmosphere of uncertainty and the consequence is sluggishness in administration. The government claims that the changes in civil service are necessary. Who is benefited through this practice?

Things worsening…

The present Awami League led government's main mandate in the election was to make Bangladesh a prosperous nation by the year 2021. Vision 2021 was the hope held out to the people. And the people believed it and voted for them.

Jalil's observations

I am feeling frustrated and also perturbed, for he (Mr. Jalil) in the none-too-distant past created a furore by forecasting unusually a 'trump card' from his own think-tank!

Drama on the high seas

US Navy Seal snipers shot dead the three Somali pirates who were holding American sea captain Richard Philips hostage in a lifeboat. The sharp shooters wearing night vision goggles, fired simultaneously from a moving platform through the small window of the lifeboat which was also moving. With a single shot in their heads all the three pirates were dead instantly. It is just incredible!

WASA water

A few days back, I went to Mirpur WASA (Adjacent to Bangla College) to buy some Shanti water Jar. When I checked availability of Shanti water with the WASA sales outlet, I did not find Shanti water Jar (20 litre Jar) there. At one stage one staff advised me to collect good water from one water purifying plant located at Mirpur.

International

Lanka army nears last LTTE hideout

Making a final push to overrun the last patch of LTTE-held territory, Sri Lankan forces yesterday captured strategic Vlayarmadam area and encircled remaining six sq km strip of land which is the possible hideout of LTTE Supremo Velupillai Prabhakaran and his top aides.

Pakistan launches offensive against Taliban militants

Pakistan yesterday launched a new offensive to halt the advance of Taliban militants in the country's northwest, the military said, after the extremists ambushed troops, killing one soldier.

Is Modi the other PM candidate for BJP?

Is BJP trying to project Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi as its prime ministerial candidate after L K Advani?

Obama dominates in first 100 days

In his high-velocity first 100 days, Barack Obama has sketched the outlines of a presidency of astounding ambition, which would remake the United States at home and transform its role abroad.

Communities see Obama as first Asian-American president

Barack Obama made history as the first African-American president but in his first 100 days he has also shown himself to be America's most Asian leader yet, community members say.

US will not sell out Lebanon to Syria

Visiting Secretary of State Hillary Clinton pledged yesterday that the current rapprochement between the United States and Syria will not come at the expense of Lebanon.

Two dead as Somali pirates seize tanker

Somali pirates seized a Yemeni oil tanker off the Arabian peninsula country in a deadly clash with coast guards yesterday that cost at least two lives, Yemeni officials said.

US raid kills 2 in Iraq

A woman and a policeman were shot dead during a US raid on a house in the southern Iraqi town of Kut early yesterday, according to an Iraqi security official and a local medic.

US worried over Pak nukes going to Taliban hands

Worried by the "worst" and "unthinkable" possibility of Pakistan's nuclear arsenal falling into the hands of the Taliban, the US is pushing Islamabad hard to devise a strategy to regain control of the country, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said.

Baitullah plans to attack Pak cities

Pakistani Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud plans to carry out terror attacks in major cities, including Islamabad, Rawalpindi and Lahore, and has despatched his top five commanders along with 300 terrorists and suicide bombers to execute the mission.

Separate blasts claim 18 in Pakistan

Six of a family and 12 children were killed in two separate blasts in Pakistan yesterday.

Taliban still in Buner despite deal

Some heavily armed Taliban militants who entered the strategic Buner district near the Pakistani capital from Swat valley are still in the area despite a deal with local authorities for their withdrawal, a media report said yesterday.

Israel arrests Palestinian over axe attack

Israeli security services have arrested a Palestinian man who allegedly killed an Israeli teenager and wounded a child at a settlement in the occupied West Bank earlier this month, army radio said yesterday.

Drugs, chemicals burnt in Afghanistan

Afghan counter-drug officials destroyed 6.5 tonnes of drugs and precursor chemicals in a raging bonfire Sunday they said symbolised recent successes in Afghanistan's fight against opium poppies and heroin.

Bomb kills 6 Afghan policemen

Six policemen were killed in two bomb blasts in insurgency-plagued Afghanistan at the weekend, authorities said yesterday.

Arts & Entertainment

Dance festival by Srishti Cultural Centre

Something was missing from the two larger than life replicas of dancing feet -- one donning an Indian classical costume and the other in a ballet outfit -- put at the corner of the stage. Prominent and promising dancers of the country put a pair of dancing bells on them, and the feet looked complete. This endearing gesture marked the inauguration of the two-day dance festival by Srishti Cultural Centre at the National Theatre Stage, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA).

Samiran’s celestial world

In combination with vision and keen observation, Samiran Chowdhury is now searching for new themes and wants to explain his works differently. The morsels of his lines, tones, textures, and varying mild and bright colours are immersed in his works and have evolved in an abstract style. Samiran is now recognised as a pure abstract painter and prefers to highlight in pleasant splendour the themes of the spiritual world, adoration and emotions.

Recovering and preserving underexposed folk songs

Local social organisation Participatory Advancement Social Service (PASS) has been working to preserve folk cultural traditions, particularly regional songs of northern Bengal since 2000. Executive director of PASS, Khandokar Mohammad Ali Shamrat told The Daily Star that the organisation believes that the need of the hour is to boost folk songs and other indigenous performing art forms. “Our activists are working with the objective of recovering and preserving the lost and rarely practiced folk songs of Bangladesh,” he said.

Bea Arthur: A Golden Girl who’ll always remain a friend

“Sassy” is the word that comes easiest to mind when describing an actress like Bea Arthur and the characters she played, most notably on "Maude" and "The Golden Girls." But sassy finally seems too small for Arthur, who died on April 25 of cancer at age 86. It connotes perkiness and feistiness; Arthur, on the other hand, exuded too much stature and presence to possess sassiness -- even to need it, really. Physically (at 59), in her husky voice and in her imperious stature, she was a daunting presence, and even her nimblest one-liners seemed to vibrate up from deep in the earth. Sassy? She ate sassy for breakfast.



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