The Daily Star

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Sunday, April 22, 2018

News of: Sunday, 3rd of May, 2009

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Power crisis BNP's creation: Hasina

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Friday blamed the previous BNP-led four-party alliance government for the prevailing power and water crises.

Ensure power, water or quit: Khaleda

Leader of the Opposition and BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia yesterday asked the prime minister to step down if she cannot ensure proper supply of gas, power and water and provide jobs, which were the Awami League's election pledges.

Dropping of 11 cases against Hasina on cards

The metropolitan public prosecutor (MPP) is going to recommend withdrawal of the nine remaining cases against Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina as the government law official has found that the cases were filed for "political harassment".

Another BDR man dies in Sylhet

Another Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) jawan died, in Sylhet, yesterday raising the death toll to 19 since March 9.

Govt moves to probe post-polls violence of 2001

The present government is actively considering formation of an enquiry commission to probe the 2001 post-elections violence and taking actions against the persons responsible for the violent incidents.

Swine flu hits Asia

Swine flu continued its global march as South Korea confirmed its first case and Hong Kong and China scrambled to track down anybody who had been in contact with an infected Mexican man.

Fast-track courts to handle Gujarat riot cases

India's Supreme Court Friday ordered the setting up of special fast-track courts to handle a backlog of cases relating to the mass murder of Muslims in Gujarat state in 2002, a report said.

Women representatives feel ignored

Female vice-chairmen of upazila parishads throughout the country could not begin their jobs even after four months of their election as the government is yet to issue any circular regarding the newly created posts.

Coarse rice gets dearer

The price of coarse rice both at the wholesale and retail markets across the country has started increasing after the open market sale (OMS) programme ended Thursday with the procurement of rice and paddy starting from Friday.

May Day observed

The historic May Day was observed in the country as elsewhere across the world Friday with a promise to amend labour laws in accordance with ILO Conventions to protect the interests of the working class.

UZ chairman accuses MP of assaulting him

Golam Faruk, chairman of Banaripara upazila parishad in Barisal, has accused Monirul Islam Moni, an Awami League (AL) lawmaker from Barisal-2 constituency, of assaulting him at Banaripara police station on Friday.

Khaleda may file writ petition today

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia is likely to file a writ petition with the High Court (HC) today challenging the government decision cancelling allotment of her house in Dhaka cantonment.

201 tested on arrival at ZIA

The government has geared up precautionary measures at airports, seaports and land ports to prevent anyone carrying deadly 'Swine Flu' virus from entering the country.

2 murdered in city

Two people were killed and a BNP ward level leader sustained bullet wounds in separate incidents in the capital on Friday.

Nor'wester kills 8 in Jamalpur

At least eight people were killed and a trail of destruction to dwelling houses and standing crops left by a nor'wester that lashed seven upazilas of Jamalpur district early hours yesterday.

National commission to fix prices of farm produce

The government will constitute a national price commission to fix prices of agricultural products for protecting interests of the country's farmers, Food Minister Abdur Razzaque said yesterday.

50 injured as traders clash in Rajshahi

A clash between cloth traders and jewellers at Shaheb Bazar in Rajshahi city yesterday left at least 50 people injured including traders, policemen and journalists.

Muggers shoot businessman, loot money

A gang of armed muggers snatched around Tk 10 lakh yesterday at Sutrapur in the capital, leaving a businessman bullet-hit.

20 injured as AL men clash with cops

At least 20 people, including five policemen, were injured yesterday in a clash between Awami League activists and police at Baktabali Bazar in Fatulla upazila over a land dispute.

Proshika staff form human chain, ask Faruque to go

Employees of Proshika yesterday formed a human chain in front of its Human Resources Development Centre at Koitta under Saturia police station yesterday demanding removal of its Chairman Qazi Faruque Ahmed.

BSF kills 2

Indian Border Security Force (BSF) killed two Bangladeshis on the borders of Satkhira and Lalmonirhat on Friday.

Smugglers loot arms from Rab men

Organised smugglers swooped on two members of Rapid Action Battalion-5 (Rab) and looted their service pistols with 16 bullets at Tangon in Charghat upazila yesterday.

64 civilians killed in Lanka hospital attack

At least 64 civilians were killed and another 87 wounded yesterday in an attack on the last remaining medical facility inside rebel-held territory in northeastern Sri Lanka, a pro-rebel website reported.

76 militants, 2 soldiers killed in Pak tribal area

Pakistani helicopter gunships and ground troops pounded Taliban fighters Saturday and Friday, killing up to 76 militants and destroying a dozen would-be suicide bombers in fierce fighting, the army said.

Obama reaches out to Sharif hoping to make Pakistan stable

The administration of US President Barack Obama is reaching out to former Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif, the chief rival of President Asif Ali Zardari, in hopes to find a way to strengthen the country's government, The New York Times reported late Friday.


Govt austerity measures welcome

THE decision to cut back on avoidable government expenditure is a timely one. But what is important is to see that the measures are put into effect on a sustained basis. It may not be out of place to mention that we have been witness to similar articulations in the past from governments assuming the reins of power but down the road the instructions were seen to lose much of its force and in the end to frizzle out. However, we would like to believe that, given the current global economic downturn whose effects we have already begun feeling, the government means business.

Growing Taliban threat in Pakistan

THE Pakistan army has for the past few days been locked in fierce battle with the Taliban in Buner town just a hundred kilometers from Islamabad. The government's report that fourteen militants have been killed has now been followed by new reports of the Taliban kidnapping a number of Pakistani security personnel. The army claims that the Taliban have been holding residents of Buner hostage in their skirmishes with the soldiers. These images of a dangerously developing situation speak of the realities Pakistan is faced with today.

Whither shared austerity?

SHARED austerity, also known as belt tightening demands, has a long history in preach and in practice. During economic recession, governments attempt to economise the use of scarce resources by rationing demands.

Tackling the power crisis

THE newly elected government continues to face a stern test in the manner in which it attempts to overcome the power deficit that is affecting not only the daily lives of the citizens but also economic development, trade, and prospects of food security.


Sadat turns up heat

Top Sports of Noakhali pushed Chittagong Mohammedan Sporting Club to the backseat in the opening match of the country's first-ever Twenty20 tournament as the Port-city Cricket League (PCL) 2009 got off to a boisterous start at the MA Aziz Stadium yesterday.

MA Aziz buzzes again

Thousands of cricket lovers thronged at Chittagong's MA Aziz Stadium yesterday after a four-year hiatus as the organisers of the much awaited 'Habib Group Port city Cricket League (PCL)' shook off the cobwebs in style.

Four teams in zonal finals

Barisal club Nazrul Pathagar and Boyra Tarun Sangha of Khulna moved into the zonal final after defeating their respective opponents in the National Club Cup tournament yesterday.

Practice match drawn in Ctg

The two-day practice match between Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) Development team and the GP-BCB National Cricket Academy side ended in a draw at the Chittagong Divisional Stadium yesterday.

Having a ball with the ball

Yuvraj Singh is perhaps one of the more irritating bowlers to face, certainly one of the more amusing to watch and arguably one of the most enjoyable to write about. What does he do to get under the skin of quality batsmen like Kevin Pietersen and what does he have to get a hattrick in a Twenty20 game? It's too easy to dismiss it as luck for there is intelligence -- street smartness, perhaps -- in his bowling.

A Royal turnaround

Rajasthan Royals staged a dramatic fightback to upset table-toppers Deccan Chargers by three wickets in their Indian Premier League match here on Saturday.

Yousuf quits ICL?

Mohammad Yousuf has claimed that he has "resigned" from the ICL after he decided last month that his priority was to play for Pakistan. The move potentially paves the way for Yousuf's comeback to the national side, as the PCB recently announced it was willing to talk to players who leave the ICL before the end of May and consider their cases for an international return on an individual basis.

Lanka U-19s take 1-0 lead

Dinesh Chandimal missed a century but the Sri Lanka Under-19 captain ensured his side won by 38 runs in the first one-day against Bangladesh Under-19 side at the Khulna Divisional Stadium yesterday.

Local Snippets

Panna Ghosh led from the front with an unbeaten half-century as Ansar and VDP thrashed Indira Road Krira Chakra by 103 runs in the Women's Club Cup tournament at the City Club ground yesterday.

Jakati spins Chennai to win

Left-arm slow bowler Shadap Jakati spun the Chennai Super Kings back into contention in the Indian Premier League with an 18-run win over the Delhi Daredevils at the Wanderers Stadium Saturday.

Yuvraj hattrick in lost game

Kings XI Punjab captain Yuvraj Singh took a hattrick and slammed a half-century but it was not enough to secure a win for his side in their Indian Premier League match against Royal Challengers Bangalore at Kingsmead on Friday.

Djokovic stuns Federer

Novak Djokovic made the most of a rain break to transform his play and beat Roger Federer 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 in a thriller on Saturday to reach the final of the ATP Rome Masters.

Australia take series

Michael Clarke struck a sparkling hundred as Australia beat Pakistan by eight wickets in the fourth day-night international here on Friday to take an unassailable 3-1 lead in the series.

Didar clinches Boli Khela title

Didarul Alam Didar once again clinched the title of the 'DC Shaheber Boli Khela', a traditional wrestling competition, at the Cox's Bazar Stadium yesterday.

Kamran reported for odd action

Kamran Khan, the Rajasthan Royals' teenaged fast bowling discovery, has been reported for having a suspect bowling action.

'Perfect for T20 WC'

Australia's stand-in captain Michael Clarke said Saturday his country's one-day series win over Pakistan this week had boosted it chances for next month's Twenty20 World Cup tournament.

MU in box seat

Manchester United extended their lead at the top of the Premier League to a commanding six points as goals from Ryan Giggs and Park Ji-Sung sealed a comfortable 2-0 win away to Middlesbrough.

Hiddink hits back

Chelsea boss Guus Hiddink has hit out at claims Chelsea used "dirty tricks" to secure last week's goalless draw with Barcelona in the first leg of their Champions League semifinal.

'Almunia for England'

Arsene Wenger believes Manuel Almunia could be England's goalkeeper at next year's World Cup finals in South Africa.

Piotr fires Hamburg

Germany winger Piotr Trochowski drew first blood for Hamburg in the first-leg of the all-German UEFA Cup semifinal as his winning goal sealed a 1-0 win at Bundesliga rivals Werder Bremen on Thursday.

Fernandinho rescues Shakhtar

Shakhtar Donetsk will take a slight advantage into the second leg of their UEFA Cup semifinal against fellow Ukrainians Dynamo Kiev after drawing 1-1 against them here in the first leg on Thursday.

Ferdinand on track

Rio Ferdinand should be fit for Manchester United's Champions League semifinal second leg clash with Arsenal next week, Sir Alex Ferguson revealed on Friday.

Bayern eye up van Gaal

Bayern Munich team manager Uli Hoeness revealed on Saturday Louis van Gaal, who won this season's Dutch championship with AZ Alkmaar, is one of Bayern Munich's targets to replace Jurgen Klinsmann.

Italian clubs plan new league

Serie A's 20 clubs on Thursday voted to break away from their Serie B counterparts and form a new competition along the lines of the English Premier League.

Park agrees new deal

South Korea winger Park Ji-sung has agreed a new deal with Manchester United, according to reports in England.

Briton smashes keepy-uppy WR

A British man on Friday smashed the world record for keeping a football in the air after tapping it up and down for a marathon 24 hours, an AFP reporter said.

Buffon upset with Juve

Juventus star Gianluigi Buffon admits he has become frustrated at the club this season.


Rupayan plans river container terminal

Rupayan Group, a leading real estate firm, plans to set up a state-of-the-art inland river container terminal near Dhaka to expedite container transportation from Chittagong Port to the capital and its adjacent areas.

Housing fair pulls in huge crowd

A huge number of prospective customers showed their keenness to buy low-cost apartments at the ongoing Rupayan Housing Fair yesterday, the second day of the three-day event.

Stocks trade bearish

The Dhaka market went bearish last week after two weeks of gains with prices falling throughout the week.

ADB to set up $3b fiscal spending fund

The Asian Development Bank said Saturday it will establish a three-billion-dollar fund to boost developing member countries' fiscal spending capacity amid the global economic crisis.

Rogue edible oil traders warned

The government will take legal action against the traders who are selling edible oil at higher prices defying the government's fixed prices, Commerce Minister Faruk Khan warned yesterday.

Seminar stresses intensive research on hybrid farming practices

The government should look and learn from local farmers to know whether they want to go for the hybrid seed variety instead of following 'prescriptions' from donor agencies, said the president of Bangladesh Economic Association yesterday.

Mexican economy under strain

The music of James Brown plays to an empty Starbucks. A woman has virtually an entire airliner to herself as she flies into Mexico City. Beach chairs go begging on Cancun's sugary sand.

Flu or not, workers can't stay home

You wake up one morning and you're feeling achy and feverish. The directions from health officials battling swine flu are clear: Stay home from work. Don't risk infecting others. And certainly don't send a sick kid to school.

Asian markets mixed

Japanese stocks rose Friday on confidence that the world economy may be easing out of a massive slump, while Sydney edged lower at the beginning of a long May Day weekend.

Data show upbeat sign for US factory sector

The US factory sector slumped in April for a 15th straight month but the pace of decline was less severe than expected, new data showed Friday in another upbeat sign for the recession-hit economy.

Petroleum dealers call off strike in Sylhet

Petroleum dealers in the Sylhet region yesterday resumed lifting petrol, diesel and octane from the Rupantarita Prakritik Gas Company Limited (RPGCL) plant at Golapganj in Sylhet after four days of a strike.

Asian finance ministers plan joint rescue funds

Regional finance ministers met yesterday on the sidelines of the Asian Development Bank gathering to formally announce the setting up of joint funds to beat the global economic crisis.

Digital lifestyle fair next month

A digital lifestyle fair is going to be held on June 26-28 in the capital.

Wall Street faces stress on bank tests

A resurgent Wall Street faces a challenge in the coming week with results of "stress tests" of the banking system and unemployment data expected to reveal more massive job losses.

Oil edges higher

Oil prices rose Friday, reversing earlier losses as bargain hunters snapped up crude in thin trading ahead of the weekend and amid public holidays in much of Europe.

Boston Globe union granted deadline extension

Negotiations between unions at The Boston Globe and its owner, The New York Times Co, will continue after the company agreed to extend its midnight deadline for the newspapers' employees to make $20 million in concessions.

US auto sales fall 34pc

Bad news at Chrysler and General Motors took a bite out of US auto sales that fell 34 percent in April as consumers shied away from dealerships amid growing economic uncertainty.

Japan sees jobless surge, renewed deflation

Japan's jobless rate hit a more than four-year high as deflation returned to haunt the world's number two economy, which is reeling from its worst slump since World War II, data showed Friday.

Chip sales down 30pc in March: SIA

Global semiconductor sales fell nearly 30 percent in March compared with a year ago but improved slightly over the previous month, the Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) said Friday.

Weekly Currency Roundup

April 26-30, 2009
International Markets:
The international markets continued to remain volatile this week. Concerns about the Swine flu contributed to an increase in risk aversion and weighed on investor sentiment. The Mexican peso fell 3 pct versus the dollar, and hit a 3-week low after reports of the outbreak surfaced. The WSJ report on Bank of America and Citigroup further contributed to the strength of the yen and the d +ollar, which tend to rise in times of risk aversion. By the end of the week the dollar fell broadly, hitting a three week low against a basket of currencies as speculation the global economic downturn is slowing continued to raise demand for riskier assets. The euro climbed along with high-yielders as investors looked beyond a weak headline reading of US growth and focused on signs the economy may soon pick up, an outlook suggested by the Federal Reserve in its policy statement on Wednesday. This kept intact a broad, ongoing improvement in market sentiment and risk demand, which analysts said would continue so long as economic data does not significantly alter the view that the global economy is starting to show signs of recovery. Concerns about the spread of swine flu waned on the view that the disease thus far would have limited economic impact, and a report of an imminent bankruptcy filing by Chrysler did little to stifle the risk rally, with analysts saying that markets have already priced in the US automaker's failure.


Ratify UN convention on migrant workers' rights

Speakers at a seminar yesterday called on the government to ratify the UN Convention on the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Family without delay to safeguard the rights of about 65 lakh Bangladeshi workers.

Bangladesh team starts Lobuje Peak expedition May 10

A four-member team of Bangla Mountaineering and Trekking Club (BMTC) will leave Dhaka for Nepal on May 7 to conquer 20075 feet high Lobuje Peak in the Himalayas.

Police should provide info to ensure transparency

Inspector General of Police (IGP) Nur Mohammad said the police should provide information to the press for the sake of transparency and national interest.

Be more humane to workers

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Friday called upon the industrialists to be humane to the workers and meet their fundamental needs, and requested the labourers not to create any anarchy destroying the country's exports.

Schools use magic as tool for enrolment, learning

Several hundred children were bubbling with excitement and joy as a celebrated magician performed his jugglery, a technique that appeared very fruitful in delivering messages to kids at rural schools.

Negligence in maintaining quality unpardonable

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina asked engineers to be honest in their work and forewarned that any negligence in maintaining quality of construction work will be considered unpardonable.

'Ensure rights of labourers'

Speakers at a seminar on Friday said the concerned authorities should strengthen the existing monitoring system whether the industry owners follow the labour law to ensure rights of the labourers as they are exploited due to lack of proper monitoring.

Stop use of ACs to reduce loadshedding

Speakers at a human chain programme yesterday urged the prime minister and her cabinet colleagues to stop use of air conditioner to reduce loadshedding.

Climate change, public health to be high on agenda

Health ministers from Commonwealth countries will meet in Geneva, Switzerland on May 17 to discuss 'Health and climate change', a theme of special relevance to the Commonwealth's developing countries and its small island states.

Three noted citizens honoured

Speaker Abdul Hamid Advocate yesterday called on the guardians and child organisers to make children aware of some certain quarters who distort the real history of the liberation war.

Call to build pro-people healthcare system

A seven-week course titled 'Executive certificate in public health management' was launched at a ceremony at Brac Centre in the city yesterday.

Reactivate TCB to check price hike of essentials

Speakers at BBC Bangladesh Sanglap yesterday said the government should monitor commodity markets regularly and ensure proper supply of products by activating Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) to ensure lower price rates of essentials.

Khelaghar Asar honours FF members

Kendrio Khelaghar Asar honoured 11 of its members, who took part in the Liberation War, at a ceremony at Liberation War Museum in the city yesterday.

Art competition for children held

The Holy Family Red Crescent Medical College organised an art competition for the children in the city on Friday marking the World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day 2009.

Hearing on leave to appeal petitions likely today

The Supreme Court (SC) may hold hearing today on the leave to appeal petitions against the High Court (HC) judgment that had declared illegal the 5th Amendment to the Constitution endorsing late president Ziaur Rahman's takeover and previous acts from August 15, 1975.


Pack of land grabbersthreatens Naboganga

Indiscriminate lifting of earth from the banks of the Naboganga by local land grabbers is threatening the river and its surroundings.

Outlaws also apply in Khulna for withdrawal of cases

Two underground operatives, charge-sheeted in murder and other criminal cases filed against them during the last ten years, have also filed petitions with the deputy commissioner of Khulna to withdraw the cases.

Signs of gummosis worry mango growers

Hundreds of mango trees in the district are being affected with gummosis disease, locally known as athajhora rog, much to the worry of mango growers.

Snaps And Snippets

Six-year-old girl raped
A Correspondent, Gopalganj
A six-year-old girl was raped at Kotalipara in Gopalganj on Friday. The girl is now undergoing treatment at Kotalipara upazila health complex. The parents of the girl, a student of class one, filed a case with Kotalipara police station. According to police, the victim's family and locals, neighbour Suranjan Roy, 20, took the girl to a jute field at Uttar Para village and raped her and left her there profusely bleeding. Suranjan is now absconding.


May Day and workers' rights

Observance of May Day requires establishment of workers rights. Otherwise, it would be a hollow celebration of a day.

Bleak future of old Dhaka

Dhaka city is 400 years old and it is only recognised when one visits the old part of the city. Although it is the city heart but now it's in a very deplorable condition. The slums are increasing and footpaths are occupied by poor people. This part is endowed with architectural masterpieces like Lalbagh Kella and Ahsan Monjil, etc.

Introduce more buses

The busy, clogged up Dhaka city and it dwellers need to have some sort of comfort while commuting throughout the day to their destinations. Cars and rickshaws, according to many people, are the main reason of the city's traffic congestions.

Education commission

It is good to note that the present government has felt the necessity to reform our existing education system which is not only obsolete and ineffective but also corrupt. It has constituted an education commission with some of our illustrious educationists as its members. May be within the next three to six months, the commission will compile a report and submit it to the government for its consideration. The government will probably take another six months to study the report to find out how quickly and efficiently it can implement the recommendations. Finally, in about another six months or so, the government will forget about the report and put it in the deep fridge. One may ask why I should be so pessimistic about the new education commission. The answer is very simple. All the reports submitted by the past education commissions in our country had met the same fate. In the face of agitation on the streets, the parties or persons in power never found it expedient to take any action on these reports. However, in the process the state every time had to spend in vain a huge amount of money to launch and run the activities of such education commissions.

Forgotten 'soldiers'

Armed with a weapon of a new kind, a breed of new age warriors have taken over the streets of Dhaka. “But Bangladesh isn't at war with anyone. Who are these soldiers? What are they fighting for?” asks my friend Nabil.

Talk shows

Arrangement of talk shows on regular basis in private tv channels has become routine programmes. Whenever someone switches on the television set the viewer will find a talk show or personal interview of people from different fields. Many of the participants are not eminently known to the viewers. By the grace of private channels they get opportunity to express their views on many issues. The idea of the tv channels is good and I believe it is intended to educate their viewers with in-depth knowledge and information on some current issues.

Road accidents

I am writing in response to Sayed Zain AlMahmood's letter 'Seize the moment' published in the Star Magazine on 13 March. At the outset, I would like to convey my heartiest thanks to him for his outstanding, timely & informative article on road accidents. In his writing, he gave a vivid picture and statistics of the causes & casualties of road accidents occurring in Bangladesh and around the world. He terms road accident as a forgotten epidemic & compares it to malaria and tuberculosis which get timely attention from the government, media & donors. He also mentions that road crashes cost us roughly 2% of the GDP every year & is almost equal to the total foreign aid received by Bangladesh in a fiscal year. Bangladesh has one of the worst crash rates in the world-- more than 100 deaths per 10, 0000 vehicles. He further shows that the official figure for road deaths is three to four thousand a year.

The donors

After thirty-eight years of our independence, the donors & multilateral financial agencies are becoming controversial for their roles as development partners of our nation-state Bangladesh.

MP's visit to school

Students/examinees numbering about 1500 were instructed to welcome the Member of Parliament and the people accompanying him at Adhar Chandra High School, Savar. Young students did so despite a record high temperature in the country in decades last Monday. In doing so, students/examinees had to suffer for about two hours from the heat wave which could have caused health hazard to them and could be cause for even death from heatstroke.We condemn such undemocratic and cruel acts.

Movement for the house!

Remember the immortal lines of Shakespeare? My horse, my horse, the kingdom for my horse! The BNP's stand on Khaleda Zia's residence seems to be similar. There really is no issue. She was allowed to stay on in her husband's temporary residence after he was killed in a military putsch. She is no more helpless. Therefore it is not expected that she stays on in that house and carry on with her political activities.

Quality education

We know that some government schools and colleges will be established in Dhaka city under a project, which is now under consideration.


I do not expect that all my reactions to the prevailing political situation in Bangladesh would be published in the newspapers. I had the opportunity to watch a few satellite tv footage. I have comments on one or more of them as follows:

Reshuffling govt. officials

With the installation of a new government, changes in the bureaucratic administrative systems are inevitable and it has been practised in most of the countries in the world as the new the government sometimes lacks confidence in the bureaucrats who had worked with the immediate past government or immediate past political government.

Swine flu alert!

After bird flu, now it is swine flu! Recently detected in the United States of America, swine flu or swine influenza virus takes 24 to 48 hours to incubate after intrusion into the human body. Symptoms include fever, aches, pain, cough, vomiting etcetera. No vaccine yet. Countries all over the world have issued alert to face the swine flu. Doctors have asked people to keep their hands clean and to use masks to protect against coming in close contact of infected persons. Drugs like 'TAMIFLU' can be taken immediately after the attack.


Flu fighters warn against complacency, seek clues

The leader of an international team helping Mexico face down the swine flu outbreak said it should soon learn whether the epidemic is really stabilising in Mexico, but that many key questions about how the disease kills still need to be answered.

3 US, 2 Nato troops killed in Afghanistan

Three Americans and two other international troops were killed Friday in an attack in eastern Afghanistan while over a dozen insurgents were killed in new clashes, officials said.

Top Tamil ally urges Tigers to surrender

Sri Lanka's top Tamil political force appealed Saturday for a way for cornered Tiger rebels to surrender to a third party and save tens of thousands of civilians trapped in the war zone.

New flu appears not as virulent as 1918 strain: US

The new swine flu strain lacks traits that made the 1918 pandemic so deadly, US authorities said, amid a 50-state effort to contain the disease and spread prudence, not panic, among the public.

'Swat deal to be reviewed if peace doesn't return'

A controversial deal with the Taliban in Pakistan's restive northwest would be reviewed if the militants don't live up to their end of the bargain and peace doesn't return to the area, Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani said Saturday.

Immigrants push for reforms at US rallies

Thousands of immigrants and their families marched in cities from coast to coast, hoping to channel the political muscle Hispanics flexed last fall as President Barack Obama won election.

Defeat the Left Front

Speaking in the Communist bastion of West Bengal, Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi Saturday asked people not to vote for the Left Front and said it only indulges in big talk but does little for the poor.

White House opens doors to Internet hot spots

The White House on Friday opened doors to online hot spots MySpace, Facebook and Twitter.

Dolphins vigilant round-the-clock, even while asleep

Dolphins have a clever way of remaining vigilant round-the-clock, by sending half their brain to sleep, while keeping the other half awake.

India, Pakistan were close to an accord

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Saturday said he was close to clinching 'an agreement' on all bilateral issues with then Pakistan military president Pervez Musharraf two years ago but the judiciary in that country halted that process.

US rules out sending troops to Pakistan for fighting Taliban

The United States has ruled out sending troops to Pakistan to lend support to the country's ongoing military offensive against the Taliban and other extremists groups in the North West Frontier Province (NWFP).

Voters reject all candidates in Madhya Pradesh

Over 4,000 voters left polling booths without casting their ballots since they did not want to support any of the candidates in the two-phase parliamentary election in Madhya Pradesh, an official said here Saturday.

Helicopter sabotage targets Anil Ambani

Anil Ambani does not wait in traffic.

Myanmar still endures Nargis ravages

Hundreds of thousands of people are living without adequate food and shelter in Myanmar a year after a deadly cyclone ravaged large swathes of the country, the UN and aid agencies said Saturday.

Arts & Entertainment

Shahabuddin Ahmed:
A true narrator of Liberation War

Freedom fighters, Liberation War and human beings in motion are the recurring themes of painter Shahabuddin Ahmed. Shahabuddin is one of the leading painters from the '70s, a time when the nation was caught up in the freedom movement. During the time, the country faced many crises and crossed a number of dilemmas--a time when our art and literature proceeded with a new dream and novel vision.

Theatre Festival on Tagore’s works begins

From May 1, a weeklong Theatre Festival featuring plays by Rabindranath Tagore, commenced at the National Theatre Stage, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy. To celebrate the birth anniversary of the poet laureate, theatre troupe Prangoney Mor organised the festival. Theatre troupes from both India and Bangladesh are participating in the festival geared to upholding Tagore culture in Bangladesh as well as West Bengal.

I fear nothing – Subarna

Renowned TV and film actress Subarna Mustafa talked to the Cultural Correspondent about a variety of issues--personal and professional. Excerpts from the interview

Dharm: A film with message of communal harmony

It is rare for the Delhi audience to applaud loudly at the end of a film. However, even the most blasé film goer clapped along at the conclusion of “Dharm” in New Delhi recently. The film, which negotiates the tricky question of communal harmony, saw great direction, superb acting and wonderful music.

Traditional Marma “Dha Khela” has spiritual elements

The traditional sport "Dha" is very popular among the indigenous Marma youth as it sharpens their intellect, boosts confidence and imparts the qualities of discipline and perseverance.

Promoting reading habit

At a recent meeting organised by the Lekhak Forum, novelists, cultural personalities, teachers and journalists underscored the need to promote the reading habit among children. They called upon parents to encourage their young ones to read books so that they could expand their knowledge base.

Depeche Mode back with Sounds of The Universe

The first wave of English synth-pop stars sold themselves on sinister dreams and shadowy fantasies.


What women want

THE 1997 Policy for the Advancement of Women, formulated in consultation with a large number of representatives of women's organisations, made some radical recommendations to ensure equality in personal rights, as well as to property, land, and at work, etc.

Walk tall

I am not a feminist nor do I wish to be labeled as one. In fact I would even go so far as to voice my protest against such celebrations as "Women's Day" because it makes me feel as though all other days are "Men's Day."

Rights in the in-law enclave

IT'S actually quite stupefying to think that women themselves also act against the rights of their own kind. A section of male readers could jump up at the previous sentence and breathe a sigh of relief. And yet, that remains the reality.

Breaking new ground

WOMEN'S sport has taken quite a beating from obscurantist groups in the recent past. And it doesn't help when the media helps to accidentally bolster the view of the bigots by publishing sexualised literature about women's sport. In a magazine piece that talked about women participating in the 2008 Olympics, a woman athlete was described as follows: "She participated at the summer Olympics as a Javelin thrower, and although her performance was not particularly one to remember, her physical splendour remains as a flag for people to reminisce on."

The Daily Star

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