The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Friday, December 19, 2014


News of: Monday, 15th of June, 2009

Front Page

High-rises raise flying risk

Over 300 buildings including high-rises have been constructed in violation of the country's aviation rules around the Zia International Airport (ZIA) and Tejgaon Airport making take-off and landing of planes risky.

Water minister plays down Tipai fear

The government has a plan to implement two projects at a cost of Tk 1,159 crore for carrying out dredging in rivers including Buriganga, one of the rivers considered as lifeline of the capital city.

Amnesty offered 'under compulsion'

The provision for whitening undisclosed money in exchange for 10 percent tax was incorporated in the proposed budget "under compulsion" despite the government's moral stand against it, said Prime minister's Economic Affairs Adviser Masihur Rahman yesterday.

Laws lack teeth

With various flaws and loopholes environmental laws in our country have failed to take any measures against influential quarters responsible for environmental degradation, experts said.

US on war trial, BDR deaths

The US has urged Bangladesh to be cautious in trying war criminals of 1971, saying the issue should not be politicised.

War trial set to be delayed

The trial of war criminals will not begin this month as the Law Commission still working to make recommendations for amending the law for the trial needs two more weeks to complete its job.

Foreign office awaits major shake-up

A major shake-up is underway in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with a new foreign secretary taking over soon and a number of new ambassadors and high commissioners being appointed, highly placed sources said.

Top leaderships of DGFI, army linked

Former NSI director Wing Commander (retd) Sahab Uddin yesterday hinted at links of a former top army official and an ex-DGFI high-up to the 10 truckloads of weapons seized here five years back.

Changes unlikely in BNP bodies

The BNP high command remains reluctant to address the demands from grassroots-level leaders centring the district convening committees despite growing disputes among the party men over the issue.

6 die as bus, truck collide head-on

Six people, including an upazila chairman, were killed and around 30 bus passengers were injured in a road accident on Dhaka-Rajshahi highway at Senbagh under Puthia upazila of Rajshahi district early yesterday.

Bill seeks to give BTV exclusivity

The government yesterday placed a bill in parliament seeking to enact law to preserve terrestrial facility exclusively for the state-run Bangladesh Television (BTV) with a provision for stringent punishment for violation of the law.

BFUJ, DUJ concerned over duty

Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ) and Dhaka Union of Journalists (DUJ) at a joint statement yesterday expressed concern over the imposition of five percent duty on import of newsprint as stated in the proposed budget.

Govt to sue criminals after probe

Law Minister Shafique Ahmed yesterday told parliament that the government will file cases against the war criminals once it has necessary investigation done.

Experts to review coal issues, policy

A panel of eight expatriate Bangladeshi experts begin today an exclusive brainstorming session to give the government a fresh perspective on coalmining issues and the pending coal policy.

Four salt factories knocked down

Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) along with Narayanganj district administration demolished portions of nine semi-concrete factories built illegally on the river Shitalakhya as part of the ongoing drive yesterday.

Four out on bail

Five political leaders -- three from Awami League (AL) and two from BNP -- were released on bail yesterday.

Govt doubles bounty for BDR fugitives

The government yesterday doubled the earlier announced Tk 50,000 bounty for helping arrest each fugitive BDR member suspected to have been involved in the February 25-26 mutiny and carnage at the BDR headquarters.

Three 'muggers' bullet-hit in fight with cops

Three suspected snatchers sustained bullet injuries in a shootout between them and police in the city's Rayer Bazar early yesterday.

Iran cracks down on protesters after polls

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad yesterday defended his hotly disputed re-election as security forces cracked down on opposition protestors in Tehran, where fresh violence erupted.

Palestinians hold reconciliation talks in Gaza, West Bank

The two main Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas convened meetings in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip on Sunday in a new bid to reconcile their differences, officials from both groups said.

Israel PM to outline Middle East peace plan

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is set to outline his policy for the Middle East peace process in a major speech, officials say.

Twin treat for star gazers in July

Come July, star gazers will be in for a treat -- a total solar eclipse that will remain unsurpassed in duration for the next 123 years. And in addition to it, they will also witness a lunar eclipse in the same month.

Editorial

The ailing state of Bangladesh Railway

AS a front page report in yesterday's issue of this newspaper so graphically shows, Bangladesh Railway is in need of what one might call intensive care if it is to be saved from impending collapse and go on to improve the quality of services for commuters. Essentially, it must be restored to a fully operational state before it can be developed and modernised further.

Govt sector violating building code!

WE are shocked to learn that since 1987 government buildings have been constructed without any formal approval from the designated authorities. Though mandatory under the Building Construction (BC) Act of 1952 and subsequent building rules, Public Works Department (PWD), the largest construction authority for the government sector, has been going ahead with massive construction activity in breach of the rules. Violation of government rules on their part, therefore, is but setting bad examples, since all the other sectors have to comply with relevant acts and codes.

Budget for recession and recovery

INCIDENTALLY when the manifestos for National Election 2008 were being prepared, the world economy was already in recession and the election promises were linked with the recovery. This must have facilitated the budget to address the recession and election promises in chorus and with success.

A golden tongue will go a long way

TWO centuries ago Napoleon referenced the Qur'an, at least twenty times, to justify his presence in Egypt; and the Egyptians revolted. Last week, President Obama spoke from Cairo, the so-called "Mother of the World," and was received with a thunderous applause.

Sports

Tigers to start training

A 20-member preliminary Bangladesh squad will take to the Sher-E-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur today as part of their preparations for the upcoming tour of the West Indies next month.

India crash out

Defending champions India bowed out of the World Twenty20 after losing to hosts England by three runs in a key Super Eights match at a packed Lord's here on Sunday.

India crash out

Defending champions India bowed out of the World Twenty20 after losing to hosts England by three runs in a key Super Eights match at a packed Lord's here on Sunday.

SL's sigh of relief

Sri Lanka preserved their unbeaten record at the World Twenty20 with a nine run Super Eights win over Ireland at Lord's on Sunday but only after they'd been given a huge fright by the minnows.

Younus hails heroes

Pakistan captain Younus Khan lavished rich praise on Abdur Razzaq and Umar Gul after his team roared back into the World Twenty20 after a stunning win over New Zealand.

IPL has it all

Like it or not, the cash-lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) can't be ignored as it is proving both a boon and curse for cricketers taking part in the World Twenty20 here.

Ray of hope for Pakistan

World cricket chiefs are working out a middle path to resolve the controversy over Pakistan's right to remain co-hosts of the 2011 World Cup in the sub-continent.

BKSP hammer Rahmatullah

Amzad Ali Sarker Pilot Girls' High School A team and BKSP won their second successive matches of the Girls School Cricket tournament at separate city venues yesterday.

Piul Smrity cream Fakirerpool

Piul Smriti Sangsad of Jhenaidah registered a big 5-0 win in the Bashundhara Champions Club Cup over Youngmens Club Fakirerpool of Dhaka in a Group B match at the Shamsul Huda Stadium in Jessore yesterday.

Rajib slumps to sixth

Grand Master Emamul Hossain Rajib finished sixth in the 1st SCS International Open Grand Masters Chess Tournament that concluded at Bhubaneswar in Orissa, India yesterday.

Awkward test for Dunga

Five-time world champions Brazil open their Confederations Cup defence against Egypt on Monday, aware that any slip-up could cost them dear.

Zidane reveals Ribery talks

France great Zinedine Zidane lauded Real Madrid's record-breaking acquisition of Portuguese winger Cristiano Ronaldo, in an interview with French daily Le Dauphine Libere published on Sunday.

Aussies launch WC bid

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd Sunday officially launched Australia's bid to host the football World Cup in 2018 or 2022, saying the challenge was great but the prize was even greater.

Building brick for Lippi

Marcelo Lippi has identified the Confederations Cup as a building brick upon which Italy can construct solid foundations ahead of their World Cup title defence back in South Africa next year.

Cahill ejected from nightclub

Australian international midfielder Tim Cahill was kicked out of a Sydney nightclub after a drunken fracas with bouncers, reports said here Sunday.

English debt-laden

Manchester United may be receiving a world-record fee of 80 million pounds (94 million euros, 130 million dollars) for the sale of Cristiano Ronaldo, but the amount is dwarfed by the club's huge debt.

Nakazawa in doubt

Captain Yuji Nakazawa is running a high temperature and may not lead Japan in Wednesday's World Cup qualifier against Australia in Melbourne, coach Takeshi Okada said Sunday.

Helmes vows to be fit for WC

Injured Germany striker Patrick Helmes vowed Sunday to be fit for next year's World Cup in South Africa despite damaging knee ligaments which threatens to sideline him for six months.

SA can win title: Smith

South Africa captain Graeme Smith said his side were well-placed to triumph at the World Twenty20 after extending their unbeaten record at the tournament with a 20-run win over the West Indies.

Gayle wants it to end

West Indies captain Chris Gayle would love nothing more than to get the better of England when the sides meet at the Oval on Monday in the Super Eight stage of the World Twenty20.

Sanya shines in Berlin

American sprint queen Sanya Richards ran the fastest women's 400m of the season at Berlin's Golden League opener on Sunday to throw down the challenge to Olympic champion Christine Ohuruogu.

Biman rule nat'l TT

Asif of Bangladesh Biman earned a double crown in the AB Bank 30th National Table Tennis Championship winning the boys' singles and doubles titles at the National Sports Council gymnasium yesterday.

Rybarikova's maiden crown

Slovakia's Magdalena Rybarikova defeated China's Li Na 6-0, 7-6 (7/2) on Sunday to capture the WTA Birming ham grasscourt tournament, her first career title.

India beat Pakistan

India edged rivals Pakistan by five wickets in a low-scoring match at the women's World Twenty20 here on Saturday.

Murray ends 71-year wait

Top seed Andy Murray defeated James Blake 7-5, 6-4 in the Queen's final on Sunday to become the first British winner of the pre-Wimbledon warm-up event for 71 years.

Business

State enterprises pare down losses

The government's net loss in state-owned enterprises (SoEs) came down by more than Tk 9,000 crore due to a fall in prices of petroleum products on the international market and more revenue generation from tele-communication sector in the current fiscal year.

Operators sharpen calls for SIM tax waiver

Pointing out to the government's dream of a Digital Bangladesh, six mobile operators yesterday urged the prime minister's intervention in waiving Tk 800 tax on each mobile connection, a major demand from the telecom sector that was not incorporated in the proposed budget.

New duty to cut car imports by 70pc

Reconditioned vehicle importers yesterday urged the government not to impose excessive supplementary duties on reconditioned vehicles as was proposed in the 2009-10 fiscal budget, saying that higher duties on old cars import would dispel the government's revenue target.

Mobile importers oppose new duty

Businessmen yesterday protested a 25 percent duty on mobile phones for the next fiscal year and warned that the government would fall short of the target for Tk 550 crore revenue from the import of handsets.

BGMEA ratchets up calls for stimulus

BGMEA leaders yesterday reiterated their demand for a stimulus package for the ready-made garments (RMG) sector to offset the impacts of recession.

MCCI urges lenders for low-cost funds for power

The Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) yesterday urged international lending agencies to provide low-cost finance for power and energy projects under public private partnership (PPP).

Investment of undisclosed money to boost market

Investment of undisclosed money in the capital market will make the market stronger with a liquidity glut in the coming days, Dhaka Stock Exchange authorities said yesterday.

New deal brings boom time for shipbreakers

A controversial global treaty to clean up the ship recycling industry will mean a boom in business for the Bangladeshi magnates whose workers pull the often toxic vessels apart, experts say.

Mutual funds on the rise

Recently we observed a heightened interest in the country's capital market surrounding mutual funds.

Weapon makers look overseas

Foreign governments looking to kick the tires of fighter jets and cargo planes at this week's air show in Paris will likely hear a clear message from US defence contractors: We need your business now more than ever.

Moderate gains in stocks

Dhaka stocks gained moderately yesterday, as the market reacted positively to the proposed budget for fiscal 2009-10 announced by the finance minister on Thursday.

Nokia teams up with Banglalink

Nokia and Banglalink join hands to offer subscribers a service to send and receive emails in Bangla directly from their handsets, using the Ovi email account.

Minister visits Biman

The issues like development, plans and initiatives for a better operation of Biman Bangladesh Limited, the national airline, came up for discussion during a meeting when Civil Aviation and Tourism Minister Ghulam Muhammed Quader paid his maiden visit to the airline's headquarters in Dhaka yesterday, according to a press release.

Training on public procurement begins

The 14th three-week residential course on public procurement of goods, works and services organised by the Central Procurement Technical Unit (CPTU), IMED of the Ministry of Planning, began at the Engineering Staff College Bangladesh (ESCB) at Bausia in Munshiganj district yesterday, according to a press release.

Prime Bank's new executive body chief

Prime Bank Ltd has recently elected Captain Imam Anwar Hossain as its executive committee chairman, and Hasina Khan and Razia Rahman vice-chairpersons, says a press release.

Japan to impose total ban on exports to NKorea

Japan plans to impose a total ban on exports to North Korea as part of its new economic sanctions against Pyongyang following last month's nuclear test, news reports said Saturday.

Higher rates threaten US recovery

Rising bond yields are taking a toll on home mortgage and corporate lending rates and together with jumping oil prices are threatening the expected recovery from prolonged recession.

G8 talks turn spotlight on Europe's banks

Pressure mounted on Europe to reveal the viability of its crisis-hit banks after a meeting of G8 finance ministers in southern Italy over the weekend ended in disarray over the thorny issue.

Economic vision sought in 'Davos in Detroit'

A US summit opening Monday aims to "define America's future in the global economy" in a gathering of business and economic leaders billed as "Davos in Detroit."

Britain eyes green shoots in struggling economy

Britain's battered economy is witnessing "green shoots" of recovery after a deep recession, but they could remain fragile for some time as the jobless toll continues to rise, analysts warn.

US removes Laos, Cambodia from trade blacklist

US President Barack Obama on Friday removed Laos and Cambodia from a trade blacklist, opening the way for US loans to companies doing business in the former US adversaries.

Metropolitan

Manpower shortage hits community clinics

Although the government has opened a total of 8464 community clinics, out of 11,500, they cannot provide people with the expected level of service because of lack of manpower and logistic support.

Make NGO activities more accountable, transparent

Speakers at a view exchange meeting yesterday said NGO activities should be made more accountable and transparent.

Withdraw duty on newsprint: Ershad

Terming the proposed budget a 'pro-people budget', Jatiya Party (JP) Chairman Hussein Muhammad Ershad yesterday said opportunity to whiten the undisclosed money and impose import duty on newsprint are the negative sides of the budget.

Blake assures Dhaka of all help in fighting terrorism

Visiting US Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Robert Blake yesterday assured Bangladesh of all cooperation in combating terrorism.

PM for enhanced ICT cooperation in Saarc region

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina stressed on enhancing mutual cooperation and assistance among the Saarc member states in science and technology to improve the people's living standard in the region.

Five killed in road crashes

Five people were killed and 20 others injured in separate road accidents in Satkhira, Laxmipur and Rajshahi yesterday.

All primary students to be brought under stipend

State Minister for Primary and Mass Education Motahar Hossain said all the children of primary schools would be bought under government stipend programme by the next fiscal year.

Lt Gen Mubeen takes over as army chief today

Lt Gen Md Abdul Mubeen will take over as the chief of army staff today.

Pledge to save rivers

Bahadurshah Park in Laxmibazar area saw a huge crowd yesterday as they thronged to a photo exhibition depicting the state of the country's polluted and encroached rivers.

Ecological sanitation a must to ensure public health

Speakers at a workshop yesterday underscored the need for ecological sanitation to ensure healthcare of people and save environment.

Updating of voter list begins today

The updating of voter lists with photographs in the first phase will begin in 153 upazilas of the country today, Election Commissioner Brig Gen (retd) M Sakhawat Hossain said yesterday.

BATB launches afforestation programme

British American Tobacco Bangladesh (BATB) launched its Afforestation Programme 2009 at Agargaon in the city yesterday as part of its corporate social responsibility.

Skop says budget fails to address their issues properly

Leaders of Sramik Karmochari Oikya Parishad (Skop), a platform of workers and employees, yesterday said the proposed budget has failed to address their issues properly.

Pro-people health system vital for high-quality service

Speakers at a seminar yesterday said public health service system is the most effective and right system to deliver high-quality service to all and so it should be based on a rational planning to meet the specific demand of the people.

Attacks on indigenous people condemned

Different political organisations in separate statements yesterday condemned the series of attacks evicting at least 74 families, including 56 indigenous ones, from their lands at Khatirpur at Porsha in Naogaon.

Meril Aadore Gora Bhobishshot

The award giving ceremony of the Meril Aadore Gora Bhobishshot 2008 was held at the Shishu Academy in the city recently.

'Free rivers from land grabbers, pollution'

Green Voice Environmental Technology Engineering, Dhaka Polytechnic Institute unit launched a weeklong signature campaign at the institute yesterday to press home their demands for making the rivers free from encroachment and pollution.

Software can help increase 5 pc power production

A German-Bangladesh expert consortium yesterday presented to the energy ministry a proposal for software solution that can help increase power production by five percent through improving plant management.

C'wealth edn ministers' confce begins today

The 17th Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers (17CCEM) will begin today in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia with the participation of education ministers, vice chancellors and senior officials from 53 countries.

Committee to monitor free textbook distribution

The government yesterday formed a 13-member committee to monitor the printing and distribution activities of textbooks for free at primary and secondary levels in the academic year 2010.

Arif on fresh 3-day remand

Detective police hoped that they would be able to extract important information from Mafia don Daud Ibrahim's accomplice Arif Hossain as he has given some important clues during his seven-day remand that ended yesterday.

One stabbed to death

A gang of criminals stabbed a man to death in the city's Dakkhinkhan area yesterday.

Remain united to foil plot against democracy

Agriculture Minister Matia Chowdhury yesterday urged the people from all walks of life, especially the politicians, to remain united to foil any conspiracy against the country's democracy, sovereignty and nationality.

Steps to be taken for appeal hearing

Law Minister Shafique Ahmed yesterday told parliament that necessary steps would be taken for the appeal hearing on the verdict of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman murder case after the appeal case appears on the daily cause list of the Appellate Division.

JMB cadre held in C'nawabganj

Police arrested a member of outlawed Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) with arms and Islamic books at Kharagpur village at Shibganj in the district yesterday.

Obituary

Ferdous Ara Chowdhury, wife of politician and social worker of Feni Syed Ahmed Chowdhury, passed away due to old-age complications at LabAid Cardiac Hospital at Dhanmondi in the city in the early hours of yesterday at the age of 82, says a press release.

National

AL leader's musclemen ransack Kuakata hotel

A gang of about 50 hoodlums, led by a local Awami League leader, ransacked a residential hotel at Kuakata, beat up the owner and staff and looted cash and computers on Saturday night.

17 hurt as locals, settlers clash in Khagrachhari

A clash between indigenous people and settlers over disputed land left at least 17 people seriously injured at Boroitali under Guimara upazila in Khagrachhari district yesterday morning.

Eviction bid protested

Several hundred indigenous people under the banner of Jatiya Adivasi Parishad yesterday formed a human chain at Shaheb Bazer zero point in Rajshahi city protesting eviction of 74 indigenous families from their land allegedly by local hired goons of a BNP adherent at Khatirpur in Porsha upazila of Naogaon.

Beating of hospital nurse in Patuakhali sparks protest

Nurses and doctors of Patuakhali General Hospital yesterday brought out a silent procession demanding punishment to 'nephew of a state minister' for severely beating up a staff nurse on Saturday.

Lawachhara still bears the scars of Magurchhara blast

Twelve years after the explosion at Magurchhara Gas Field on June 14 in 1997, nearby Lawachhara Reserve Forest is far from regaining its biodiversity while foreign operators of the gas field have paid a very small fraction of the money demanded as compensation for the huge losses.

Police torture one to death for bribe

An assistant sub inspector (ASI) of district Special Branch (SB) and his men tortured a person to death for failing to pay Tk 2,000 yesterday noon.

Lima murder protested

General students at Rajshahi University (RU) yesterday morning formed a human chain in the city's Talaimari area demanding punishment of killers. Nima Parvin alias Lima, a first year student of management department, who was killed allegedly by her in-laws for dowry. The students at the human chain covered their faces with white cloth and displayed a shroud to show how Lima was tortured and killed for dowry. Lima died at her in-laws' house at village Jagirpara under Puthia upazila in Rajshahi on Thursday.

Khulna journo 'missing'

Sanjoy Kumar Barkandaj, Dakope upazila correspondent of The Dainik Tothyo published from Khulna city is missing since June 8 morning. According to a GD entry with Dakope police station on Friday evening by his wife Shwapna Barkandaj, Sanjoy was kidnapped last Monday night. Shwapna alleged that her husband received several death threats over cell phone from Dipankar, son of Banishanta UP Chairman Shudhangshu Baidya for covering a report in the daily on pilferage of fuel oil from different ships of Mongla Port. Earlier, Sanjoy had filed a GD in this connection on February 9 seeking security of his life, Shwapna said.

Lightning kills two

A father died and her daughter was killed by lightning at village Chehelgazi of Sadar upazila yesterday. Police said, Md Sharif Uddin, 40, son of Muhammad Ali, and his 11-year old daughter Labony were killed in their sleep when a lightning struck their house in the early morning. At least three cattles were also killed. Labony was a Class Five student of Chandganj Primary School.

Storm lashes 6 villages

Three people were injured as storm lashed six Lalmonirhat villages last night. Scores of kutcha houses were damaged and many trees uprooted at villages Gobordhan, Kamlabari and Durgapur under Aditmari upazila and Shoilmari, Rudhershwar and Dulali under Kaliganj upazila. Meanwhile, two persons were killed by lightning at Sadar and Patgram upazilas yesterday morning. Abed Ali,36, son of late Karim Uddin at Sree Rampur village and Hasmot Miah,30, son of Yasin Mollah at village Mogholhat were struck by lightning while they went out of home for daily work at neighbouring villages during rain.

Bandarban voter list

Updating of the voter list will begin today in Sadar and Roangchhari upazilas of the district. District election officer M Kamrul Hasan yesterday said over a hundred people have been appointed to assist the process of voter updating. The process includes inclusion of new voters and deletion of names of those passed away. On completion of updating, photographs of new voters will be taken from July 1, the district election officer said. According to the existing voter list, there are 49,314 voters in Bandarban Sadar upazila and 14,993 in Roangchhari upazila.

Broom procession in N'ganj

A large number of women in Masdair area of the town brought out a broom procession yesterday protesting what they said irregular gas supply for the last six months. The procession ended at Narayanganj zonal office of Titas Gas Transmission and Distribution office at Chashara at around 11 am. The security guards obstructed their entry to the office. At this stage, they besieged the office for about half an hour. When they were allowed to enter the office, they submitted a memorandum to the Titas Gas authorities containing their demand for regular gas supply to the area.

Fake fertiliser factory

Jhenidah Rab-6 in a drive in Moheshpur upazila on Saturday night unearthed a fake fertiliser factory. A huge quantity of spurious fertiliser and fertiliser making and packing materials were recovered from the spot at village Alampur Kulbagan. During the raid on the house of Hasan, 32, son of Rabiul Islam, it was found that fake fertiliser was being made by mixing sand, salt, small parts of stone and zink.

Letters

Tigers mauled!

I strongly believe, like most of the cricket buffs, you must be either feeling deeply sorry for the plight of our national cricket or cursing yourself to be an unfortunate soul who cannot help support the failed boys of our national team.

A risky vehicle

The locally made passenger transport NOSIMON is still active in Gopalganj. It's got neither route permit, nor any fitness certificate. Even then, it's still in the streets and carrying passengers, which is too risky for the passengers. The local administration ignores its activities.

Emphasise rural development

For reducing poverty, it is necessary for our government to give emphasis on rural development. It is imperative to drive our attention from urban-centric economy to local or rural -centric economy. For that we should emphasize agro-farming and rural infrastructure.

Tigers?

They call themselves Tigers! Why is Ashraful still the Captain? It's a good thing he is not the Captain of a Ship because it would have probably sunken a long time ago. He is no good. Shakib-Al Hassan got so much praise for his past performances which made him float so high in the air that he too has forgotten how to play cricket. They do not deserve to play any form of cricket.

Acid violence

Acid violence is one of the most heinous crimes. Nowadays it is very rampant in the country. Almost every day we find reports in the newspapers of acid violence on women. In most cases, rejected lovers are involved in this crime.

Consumers harassed

Recently, Dhaka Wasa office located at Fakirapool issued disconnection notices showing non-payment of Wasa bills to a good number of consumers of Bangla motor-New Eskaton area, Dhaka. Many consumers rushed to Wasa office and discovered that Wasa did not receive the bill payment confirmation copy from the Wasa designated bank. The Wasa official concerned solved the issue promptly against production of bill payment copies. Who is responsible for this type of harassment in the context of Digital Bangladesh, E-governance, changing days or so slogans?

Begum Zia's politics

Begum Khaleda Zia should realise that she is standing on extremely soft ground. She led the most corrupt government in the history of Bangladesh. All of her ministers were corrupt including her two sons. Through the Hawa Bhavan, the BNP institutionalised corruption and other malpractices such as controlling postings and promotions of government service holders. Her party patronized the rise of militancy in Bangladesh such as Harkatul Jihad and Bangla Bhai with a view to eliminating political rivals. Immediately after she took over power in 2001, she let loose violence against the minority community for voting for the AL. She called back some diplomats sent abroad by the previous AL government. There was large scale transfer and demotion of government service holders.

Budget and tricky car business

Every year even before the official announcement of our national budget, most people could sense what items would become costlier, thanks to the forecast by newspapers and electronic media. However, in this process some unscrupulous businessmen take the advantage of the pre-budget forecast and do brisk business depriving the government of due duty and tax. This year as well we came to know from the newspapers that the import duty on the motorised vehicles would go up in the upcoming budget and vehicles would become costlier, since the government is going to impose high tax on it. Some dishonest car importers have already opened crores of dollars LCs on various banks to import new vehicles and some have already stocked a large number of reconditioned cars and selling them at high prices, thus depriving the government of tax. The question is how these car importers became sure that car prices would go up in the market even before the approval of the budget? How was it possible for them to get sure on this matter without a tip-off from the higher authorities? Whatever might be the reason, the consequences of this will not bear any good result for the government or for the general people as a whole. On the one hand, the government and the NBR are going to lose thousands of crores of taka as revenue, and the general people are paying their hard earned money for buying these cars, falling prey to this tricky business by car importers and dealers.

Money whitening

This year the government has again decided to give a chance to the black money holders to whiten their ill gotten money. It is a critical factor as far as our long-run economic sustainability and good governance are concerned. Every year this process of money whitening is repeated by giving chance to the corrupt businessmen and people of various professions. It has taken a new shape when the government has decided to spare those persons if they invest their ill gotten money in certain productive sectors in our economy, subject to some conditions. But the question is whether it is a perennial process to be continued year after year or there will be an end to it. The authorities concerned should be aware of the fact that it's a kind of hidden motivation to those corrupt block of society as they go unpunished, depressing the honest businessmen and professionals. Another aspect is that it is also inspiring people to get involved in the activities of the same kind to amass wealth illegally. Though money whitening may be beneficial in the short-run for our economy by giving them a chance to enter into the formal sector, but in the long run, it will promote corruption, irregularities and havocs of various dimensions, paralysing the formal sector.

“Dumb-slog” millionaires

The editorials and letters in your newspaper continue to lambaste the national cricket team for their poor performance in the World Twenty20 cricket tournament, and rightly so. We need to ask the hard question why we (and at least two ill-advised IPL teams with deep pockets) have turned these reckless and thoughtless boys into millionaires. All they are good for are mindless slogging without any understanding of the game or any commitment to the team. And the dumb slogging at best gets the team a total of two fours and a six. One hears that they have "talent". Hardly. There must be ten thousand teenagers in the country who can slog a ball out of the field. But what makes a true cricketer is mental toughness. That trait is sadly lacking in all the Test stalwarts. That's why one of the most expensive IPL players melts down in the final over of the Kolkata Knight Riders match, and becomes the most expensive bowler of the tournament! It is time to cut them off the millionaire gravy train and try something totally new. Perhaps, psychological counselling could help.

A secular Nepal

We Nepalese people have after the successful historical people's movements 'half a century long Socialist Democratic Evolution' tried to understand the declaration of secular democratic Nepal with our reasoning. With our eagerness we have tried to revisit our nation's history, with our curiosity we have tried to find the truth about our religious practices and traditions that have confined us to the poorest social, economic and political conditions.

Tipaimukh dam

India made the Farakka Barrage on the river Ganges, violating international river laws. Now, they are moving forward with the controversial Tipaimukh dam project. It is a matter of great regret that instead of protesting, some of our ministers are speaking in favour of India's decision. Again, most of the water experts of India agree on one point that this dam will be a cause of natural and economic calamity in this region.

Taxpayers' plight

Income Tax & Value Added Tax (VAT) of a business are assessed on the basis of sale or turnover. This is unbelievable that in Bangladesh the sale or turnover of a business is always assessed twice by two different govt. departments & the sale or turnover figures assessed by the two departments for the same business is always different! This funny thing is happening because Income tax & VAT is assessed by the income tax officials and the customs department respectively, and there is no co-ordination between the two departments. As a result, a businessman is harassed twice for the same business, which is completely unnecessary.

D-Day and world today

June 6 marked the 65th anniversary of D-Day which hastened the end to the Second World War. We might have expected that such expressions of man's inhumanity to man ultimately might have conferred upon our societies the wisdom to truly value life and liberty.

A suggestion

We applaud the prime minister's declaration during her World Environment Day (WED) celebration speech to take long-term appropriate measures to restore, revive and recover the rivers and wetlands from illegal grabbers, polluters, etc for the sake of biodiversity conservation, aquatic ecosystem maintenance, flood control, and of course the livelihood of the people. We also applaud her for announcing the Environment Medal in favour of The Daily Star for publicizing river grabbing and pollution.

DST scheme

In his article “Manipulating Time” in The Daily Star of 29 May 2009, Mr. MAS Molla proved comprehensively that there is no need or justification for us to adopt DST. There may, however, be other obligations, unbeknown to the hoi polloi.

Lowering lending rates

Bangladesh Bank has asked the commercial banks to set a lending rate ceiling in five specific areas to a maximum 13%, to minimize the adverse affects of global recession. BB Governor Atiur Rahman asked the NBFIs (Non Bank Financial Institutions) not to depend largely on bank loans and call money.

International

Suspected US missile, bomb kill 13 in Pakistan

A suspected US missile strike killed at least five people Sunday in a tribal region where Pakistan's top Taliban commander is based, intelligence officials said, breaking a lull in such attacks and posing a test for growing anti-Taliban sentiment in the country.

20 Taliban, 2 civilians die in Afghan violence

Military operations by Afghan and foreign forces in western Afghanistan have killed 20 Taliban rebels, the army said yesterday, while two civilians were also killed.

World powers cautious on Ahmadinejad victory

World powers including Britain and the United States reacted cautiously Saturday to the disputed Iranian presidential election in which incumbent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been declared winner.

N Korea warns of nuclear war amid rising tensions

North Korea's communist regime has warned of a nuclear war on the Korean peninsula while vowing to step up its atomic bomb-making programme in defiance of new UN sanctions.

Brown's closest ally plotting to throw him out of PM Office

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown may have to face more difficulties in the days to come, as one of his closest allies Ed Balls, has said that he could ask Brown to step down.

India encroached Nepal's land

Separate delegations of Nepal's Constituent Assembly and Parliament have concluded that Nepal was encroached by India in Dang district.

Nine foreigners kidnapped in Yemen

Nine foreigners, including women and children, have been kidnapped in a volatile mountainous area of northern Yemen, an official said on Sunday amid conflicting reports over their fate.

US drops 'India, AQ Khan' riders from Pak aid bill

In what may be seen as a major concession to Pakistan, the US House of Representatives has dropped demands of access to the disgraced nuclear scientist Dr AQ Khan and preventing terrorist attacks against India as conditions from the aid bill offering Islamabad 1.5 billion dollars for the next five years.

Major arms cache found after Lankan rebels' defeat

Sri Lankan troops have unearthed the largest haul of weapons and ammunition discovered since the defeat of Tamil Tiger rebels last month, the government said yesterday.

Myanmar rejects EU concern over ethnic rebels

Myanmar's ruling junta "categorically rejects" European Union concerns over a growing offensive against Karen rebels which has forced civilians to flee to Thailand, state media said Sunday.

Pakistan is on a suicidal course, says Imran Khan

Pakistan's cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan has expressed fear that the ongoing military operation against the Taliban in Swat could backfire and fuel extremism and terror attacks in the country.

Pakistan blames India for delay in Mumbai probe

Pakistan has accused India for its laid back attitude in the Mumbai attack probe, and said that the delay being caused in the enquiry was primarily due to New Delhi's relaxed approach over the issue.

Sinha isn't quitting BJP

Senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Yashwant Sinha, on Sunday said that he had no intention of quitting the right-wing party, and expressed happiness over the party leadership accepting his resignation from top posts.

Arts & Entertainment

Ushering in monsoon

Dakkhini Rabindra- sangeetangan, a cultural organisation of Tagore singers, organised a musical soiree ushering in the Bengali season 'Barsha' (monsoon). Noted Tagore artistes Fahim Hossain Chowdhury, Lily Islam, Chanchal Khan and Rokaiya Hasina presented Tagore songs that eulogise monsoon with the themes of love, passion, separation, longing and frustration, fired up by the season.

Art as a catalyst to bring together neighbours

Art and culture possess the ability to bridge nations and minimise differences. A weeklong exhibition, featuring works of artists from Chittagong and Kolkata, is now on at the Gallery of Assistant Indian High Commissioner's office at Khulshi in the port city. The exhibition, titled "Vicinity-II," was inaugurated last Saturday. Assistant High Commission of India, Chittagong has organised the event participated by 12 established artists from both countries.

Spotlight on Udichi

Sreekamol Sangeet Biddyalay, the lone music institution in Sirajganj, directed by the local Udichi unit, arranged its annual certificate giving ceremony and a cultural function at Shaheed M. Mansur Ali Auditorium in the town last Friday evening.

Shashee: Impressive histrionics, emerging star

Law student Sharmin Zoha Shashee from Rangpur, a new face in the media, has conquered many a heart with her impressive acting skills.

Hundreds honour David Carradine at funeral

Hundreds gathered to honour David Carradine at a sprawling hillside cemetery on Saturday during a funeral that was attended by family, former co-stars and other Hollywood friends.

Bappa Majumder on ntv tonight

Popular singer-musician and leader of the band Dolchhut, Bappa Majumder, is the guest on tonight's “Amaro Gaitey Ichhchhey Holo,” a musical show on ntv.

Talk show on saving rivers

Third episode of the talk show "Pradhanmantri Samipey: Nadi Bachao, Dhaka Bachao" will be aired tonight at 6pm on Channel i. The programme is a part of the campaign to save the rivers around Dhaka, initiated jointly by The Daily Star and Channel i. Today's topic is taking immediate steps to save the four rivers around the capital city -- Buriganga, Balu, Shitalakhya and Turag.

Discussion at Chhayanat Sangskriti Bhaban

A full-fledged research and media centre, and studio have been set up at Chhayanat Sangskriti Bhaban with the aid of the Norwegian Government says, a press release. A library with art related books and publications, an audio-visual archive and a recording studio have been inaugurated.

OP-ED

Ending the stalemate at upazila

THE Upazila (former Thana) is the oldest field level administrative unit in the sub-continent. The Thana was first created by the British as police outpost in 1793, and gradually other elements of the administration were added. The police was followed immediately by revenue, thus maintenance of law and order, and collection of revenue, remained as the main function of the Thana.

Silence is not an answer

EVERY ruling system, no matter how radical its origins, develops a vested interest in silence. The most widely used justification for secrecy is national interest, and, once in government, politicians quickly acquire the skill of extending the breadth of national interest to include their personal interests.

Emerging changes in America's Pakistan policy

THERE cannot be any doubt about the impending changes in America's Pakistan policy or, as one might put it, in its India policy. What one gets from the media and can only guess about Obama's personal letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh conveys is that the US wants to play the role of an honest broker in India-Pakistan disputes, mainly over Kashmir.



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