News of: Thursday, 18th of June, 2009
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Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said her government has taken effective measures for restructuring intelligence agencies and coordination of their activities.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said in parliament Bangladesh will soon send a diplomatic protest note to UN against the claim of India and Myanmar over extended continental shelf of the Bay of Bengal.
The provision for whitening black money in the proposed new budget comes with certain strict conditions this time, but the rate of tax for whitening money still remains unduly favourable for black money owners, compared to regular income tax rates, just like previous similar provisions.
The onus is now on Speaker Abdul Hamid to scrap parliament membership of BNP lawmaker Salauddin Quader Chowdhury for concealing educational information in the affidavit he submitted while seeking candidacy for the ninth parliamentary election.
Eight people were injured when an express train rammed two cars and a bus stuck in a gridlock on Moghbazar level crossing yesterday tossing the vehicles on to two other cars on the other side of the road.
Work on elevated expressway in the capital -- the first project under the public-private partnership (PPP) initiative-- begins soon to improve its communication network and ease traffic jam.
While dissecting the draft coal policy at a four-day brainstorming session, a panel of expatriate and local experts emphasised on health and environmental aspects in finalising the policy that should additionally be trimmed down.
A number of ruling party lawmakers yesterday criticised the propose budget for keeping the provision of money whitening.
The government has reduced the price of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) by Tk 150 per cylinder with effect from tomorrow (Friday).
On the eighth day of the ongoing eviction drive against encroachers, portions of four big structures on the Shitalakhya at Narayanganj were pulled down yesterday.
A cloud of uncertainty is gathering over the Tk 1,600 crore Barapukuria coalmine as increasing interference by groups outside the mine is triggering unrest among workers, officials claim.
"None will be spared…everyone will be held accountable for their wrongdoings," said Home Minister Sahara Khatun yesterday.
The national environment committee headed by the prime minister to deal with environment issues did not hold a single meeting in more than a decade, a parliamentary sub-committee disclosed yesterday, and urged the national committee to sit immediately.
It was 11:54am Nepalese time on June 14. Two Bangladeshi mountaineers achieved a feat many compatriots dreamt of. Musa Ibrahim and Tawhid Hossain conquered the Mt Annapurna IV, a Himalayan peak at the height of 24,682ft, as first Bangladeshis without supplementary oxygen after tremendous hardship.
Commerce Minister Faruk Khan yesterday said the government is focusing on fair and impartial investigation into the mutiny and carnage by BDR members at the Pilkhana BDR headquarters.
The parliamentary standing committee on public undertakings yesterday asked the water resources ministry to take firm steps so that Bangladesh gets its fair share of water from rivers that flow into the country through India and Myanmar.
The government should review some provisions in the proposed budget, including the issue of whitening money that would discourage the sincere taxpayers as well as weaken the tax policy, speakers told a roundtable yesterday.
A young girl of sixteen took her own life after she fell victim to the savagery of her paternal uncle who wanted to derive perverted pleasure from violating her.
Former deputy speaker Akhtar Hamid Siddiki was yesterday released on bail from Naogaon jail in connection with a sedition case.
Language movement veteran Gaziul Haque passed away yesterday afternoon at city's Square Hospital after prolonged illness. He was 80.
Prime Minister (PM) Sheikh Hasina yesterday suggested introducing solar-panel system in the educational institutions and mosques in the cities to reduce pressure on the national power grid.
A Dhaka court yesterday sent former Public Service Commission (PSC) member Prof Mahfuzur Rahman to jail after he surrendered and sought bail in a graft case in which he was earlier sentenced to 13 years' imprisonment.
After two days' effort till yesterday afternoon, Bangladesh Navy divers recovered three parts of the training aircraft of Bangladesh Air Force (BAF) that crashed in Karnaphuli estuary Tuesday.
India deployed troops to West Bengal yesterday to tackle an upsurge in Maoist violence after days of clashes between tribal villagers and police.
Tribesman seeking to avenge a deadly mosque bombing killed six Taliban in northwest Pakistan yesterday, while 22 suspected rebels died in an ongoing military offensive, the army and police said.
Iran's opposition stepped up its challenge to the Islamic regime yesterday holding another rally even as the authorities intensified a crackdown on the media to try to contain the biggest crisis since the 1979 revolution.
Three Danish soldiers, four Afghan security guards and three rebels were killed in clashes in insurgency-hit Afghanistan, authorities said yesterday, in the latest in a surge of violence in the country.
The news we have been anxiously waiting for has come about. But not in as complete a form and with as much sense of immediacy as we would have liked it to be. Even so, we welcome the initiative getting underway now through the formation of a nine-member parliamentary team including some experts as well, against the backdrop of a raging controversy interspersed with trepidation centring on the question of India constructing Tipaimukh Dam.
The report that patients at the Dhaka Medical College Hospital have been served substandard foods, year after year, is a harsh reminder of how insensitive a hospital management can be to basic dietary needs of people under their care. The patients could not eat the poor quality foods supplied by the hospital. Are we really talking about a hospital or a place where people in distress are subjected to neglectful treatment?
A budget proposal presented in the parliament, until approved by the lawmakers, is essentially an all encompassing wish list -- and all wishes aren't always realisable given financing and time constraints. However, once the budget is approved, all efforts must be directed towards the realisation of all prioritised aspirations while minimising waste and inefficiency.
ACCORDING to the Transparency International reports, 2008 was corruption's worst on record. Worldwide, 54% now expect corruption to increase in the future; it is already up from 43% in 2003. As incidents of corruption grew more common, so did expectations of it.
CONSUMER'S rights have long held centre stage in right-focused activities in the world. Institutional concerns about good governance cannot sidetrack overriding issue like protection of consumer's rights. Vibrant civil societies are instrumental in spearheading social movement with emphasis on consumer's rights.
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) is likely to sack under-performing Mohammad Ashraful from captaincy after the heartbreaking performance of the Tigers in the ICC World Twenty20 in England.
Sri Lanka expect the spinners to pick up another rich haul when they take on the West Indies in the World Twenty20 semifinal at The Oval on Friday.
An intriguing battle is on the cards when favourites South Africa clash with buoyant Pakistan in the semifinal of the World Twenty20 here on Thursday.
India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni admitted his highly-regarded batsmen had flopped after the defending champions lost their third successive World Twenty20 Super Eights match on Tuesday.
Spain edged Iraq 1-0 to make the semifinals of the Confederations Cup on Wednesday and equal the world record for the longest winning streak by a national team.
"Pepsi First Ball er Captain" Abdullah-Al-Fahad will bowl the ceremonial first ball to former West Indies captain and living legend Clive Lloyd before the start of the first semifinal of the ICC World Twenty20 at Trent Bridge in Nottingham, England.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) might agree to forgo demand of hosting all the 2011 World Cup matches of its share as now it's evident that the country can't host the games at home due to security reasons and have to organise them at neutral venues.
Shaheed Muktijoddha Moeen Smriti Sangsad of Jessore moved into the semifinal of the Bashundhara Champions Club Cup Football eliminating Fantos of Rangpur 3-2 at the Jessore Stadium yesterday.
Viqarunnissa Noon School and College 'A' team outplayed Rahmatullah Model High School by seven wickets in a 'battle of extras' in the girls' school cricket tournament at the Azimpur Girls' High School ground yesterday.
The National Sports Council (NSC) has approved the use of Zila Stadiums by their respective District Football Associations (DFA) for 3-4 months a year during the football season.
Chelsea striker Didier Drogba was on Wednesday banned from European competition for six matches, two of which are suspended, while full-back Jose Bosingwa was handed a four-game ban, with one match suspended, UEFA's disciplinary committee announced.
England pace bowler Simon Jones has suffered a further blow to his hopes of a comeback after having fluid drained from his troublesome knee.
Brazil were made to work before passing their first Confederations Cup exam against Egypt and another tough test is in store when they meet the United States here on Thursday.
Italy's Giuseppe Rossi has been hogging the headlines since his two-goal blitz against the United States and his club have reportedly slapped a hefty price tag on their star forward.
Manchester United midfielder Park Ji-Sung scored a second-half equalizer to give South Korea a 1-1 draw against Iran here Wednesday and close out their World Cup qualifying without a loss.
Italy coach Marcello Lippi is wary of a dangerous Egypt side but says his team's "calmness and serenity" will help them win their Confederations Cup showdown here on Thursday.
Premier League champions Manchester United will start their bid for a record fourth successive English title at home to newly-promoted Birmingham on August 15.
Not content with adding Cristiano Ronaldo and Kaka to their ranks, Real Madrid are ready to shell out another 55 million euros for French international Franck Ribery, amid signs from his club Bayern Munich a deal could be envisaged.
Cristiano Ronaldo will earn 13 million euros a year with Real Madrid to become the world's highest-paid footballer once the finishing touches are put to his 93 million-euro move from Manchester United, Marca sports daily reported on Wednesday.
FIFA on Tuesday dismissed a complaint lodged by Egypt about a penalty decision by English referee Howard Webb that cost them their Confederations Cup match against Brazil.
AC Milan midfielder Gennaro Gattuso admits he would consider following Carlo Ancelotti to Chelsea.
Tim Cahill scored twice as Australia came from behind to down Japan 2-1 and finish top of their Asian World Cup qualifying group here on Wednesday.
Wigan chairman Dave Whelan will meet Manchester United and Real Madrid representatives in the next three or four days to discuss the potential transfer of Ecuador winger Antonio Valencia.
Lyon's long-serving Brazilian playmaker Juninho arrived in Qatar for talks about a transfer to Al-Garrafa, the Doha club said on their website Tuesday.
Defending champion Rafael Nadal will be the top seed in the men's singles at Wimbledon this year ahead of French Open champion Roger Federer, seeded second, and Queen's champion Andy Murray, who will be the third seed.
Having finally lifted the crushing burden of his French Open jinx, Roger Federer now targets a sixth Wimbledon title and a record-breaking 15th Grand Slam trophy.
India's cricket selectors on Wednesday rested key players Sachin Tendulkar and Zaheer Khan for the limited-overs tour of West Indies starting later this month.
Scholastica clinched their second successive win in the Citycell Dhaka Metropolis women's school football championship crushing Azimpur Agrani School 4-0 at the Sultana Kamal Sports Complex yesterday.
Skippers Karen Rolton and Charlotte Edwards set up an Australia against England semifinal in the Women's World Twenty20 on Tuesday.
The government's procurement drive is failing to bring price benefit to farmers as the paddy market remains depressed because of slack purchases by middlemen and millers.
The change is more internal than external. It will be more of a systemic change. Daylight Saving Time (DST), that is.
Beximco Ltd, a subsidiary of local business conglomerate Beximco Group, has decided to acquire half of the stake in the country's oldest private carrier GMG Airlines, which is now facing financial difficulties.
Bangladesh Association of International Recruiting Agencies (Baira) has demanded that the government earmark a Tk 500 crore fund for the rehabilitation of the migrant workers returning home jobless much before their job contract expires.
Mobile operators added only 0.28 million customers to their networks in May, recording a 26 percent lower growth rate than in April 2009.
The government may miss the opportunity to put agriculture on high growth path by slashing overall allocation for the sector, analysts said yesterday.
Economic analysts at a regional dialogue in Chittagong have described the budget for fiscal 2009-10 as the best in a decade, saying it has the potential to ensure food security and reduce social discrimination.
Commerce Minister Faruk Khan asked yesterday cold storage owners not to increase the price of potato and keep its price at the existing level up to the next season, warning them that the government will otherwise allow import of the produce.
Sheltech (Pvt) Ltd, a real estate company, will hold a six-day fair starting today at its office in Dhaka.
Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) urged the government yesterday to set up a special court for capital market to deal with stock exchange-related cases.
The Bureau of Manpower Employment and Training (BMET) has introduced an online complaint site facilitating Bangladeshi migrants anywhere in the globe to lodge their complaints.
Asia's rapid economic growth in recent years has contributed significantly to climate change and environmental pollution, the head of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) warned on Tuesday.
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will boost its investments in "clean energy" to two billion dollars a year by 2013, doubling its current contribution, the bank's president said Wednesday.
With the economy in the dumps this past year, you'd think the nation's teens would be falling all over themselves to get jobs this summer. Well, that doesn't seem to be the case.
Asian stocks were mostly lower Wednesday as investors continued to lock in profits on mounting concerns that the recent market rally may have been overblown.
Oil prices eased on Wednesday, reversing earlier gains ahead of the latest update on US energy stockpiles, as traders tracked weak equities and tensions in crude producers Iran and Nigeria.
Thai MPs approved two government bills to borrow 22 billion dollars for an economic stimulus package, despite a walkout by angry opposition legislators, premier Abhisit Vejjajiva said Wednesday.
Japan's economy hit bottom in the January-March quarter, Finance Minister Kaoru Yosano said Wednesday, as the central bank also slightly upgraded its views on the economy.
Singapore said Wednesday the decline in its exports eased in May, raising hopes that demand for goods from the export-dependent economy may have bottomed out.
Economic expansion in war-battered Sri Lanka fell to 1.5 percent during the first quarter of this year, as the global recession hurt exports, official data showed Wednesday.
Speakers at a national seminar yesterday said advance preparation and sustainable planning is important to reduce the devastation of cyclone and its aftermath.
The main opposition party BNP believes that there is a need for caretaker government (CG) system in the country until the Election Commission (EC) becomes absolutely neutral and free from politicisation.
Agitating locals set fire to around 50 houses, including the residence of a pro-BNP union parishad (UP) chairman at Belabo upazila here yesterday protesting the killing of Jubo League leader on Tuesday.
At least four people were killed and 35 others injured in separate road accidents in Netrakona and Bandarban yesterday.
Garment workers at a press conference yesterday demanded increased salaries and introduction of rationing system to improve their livelihood.
Different political, social, and cultural organisations yesterday expressed deep shock at the death of veteran Bangla language movement hero Gaziul Haque.
Lawyers and human rights activists yesterday urged the government to issue directives to local administration for taking immediate steps to stop issuing fatwa (religious edict) as it increased alarmingly in recent months in the country.
Speakers at a discussion yesterday demanded the constitution of 1972 be reinstated for establishing a secular and democratic Bangladesh.
Speaker Abdul Hamid yesterday urged the opposition to return to parliament and discuss various issues, including seating arrangement.
At least 15 people including six women were injured when the goons of Jubok Real Estate attacked the buyers who took possession of their land at Kanchpur area under Sonargaon upazila yesterday.
Bangladesh Nari Pragati Sangha (BNPS), a non-government organisation, yesterday welcomed the government's initiative to announce the proposed national budget for the fiscal 2009-2010 as gender sensitive.
Police arrested an alleged mugger and seized a private car, used for mugging, from Jamgara area in Savar yesterday.
The arrested accomplices of Mafia don Daud Ibrahim took shelter in the country after committing crimes in India, but they are not involved in any criminal activities in the country.
A Dhaka court yesterday sentenced three teenage boys to 30 years' rigorous imprisonment for killing Alvi, a student of class four of Pallabi MDC Model High School, in August 2005.
A fire broke out on the 13th floor of a high-rise office building in the city's Dilkusha area last night, damaging furniture on the floor.
Law Minister Shafique Ahmed yesterday said the National Human Rights Commission law would be enacted in the current session of parliament.
Around 15000 women die each year from pregnancy-related complications in the country.
Britain will assist Bangladesh in strengthening the capacity of the National Board of Revenue (NBR) for smoothly collecting optimum amounts of revenues for the state exchequer.
Brac, a non-government organisation, yesterday distributed a sum of Tk 5,46,500 among 46 retrenched workers of state-owned jute mills to bear their expenses of medical treatment.
Communist Party of Bangladesh (CPB) General Secretary Mujahidul Islam Selim yesterday said the scope for whitening black money should be scrapped to show respect to the rule of law, democracy and ethical values.
Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) members recovered huge illegal VoIP equipment and held two businessmen at Goga Kaliani Bazar here on Tuesday night.
Today is the 7th death anniversary of Dr Nilima Ibrahim, an educationist, pioneer of women's rights movement and founder president of Bangladesh Mahila Samity, says a press release.
Law and order is deteriorating fast in the 10 southwestern districts as outlawed parties and criminal gangs have resumed their activities in the last six months.
Speakers at a protest meeting yesterday urged the government to take stern action against those who wanted to grab indigenous people's land at Boroitali under Guimara upazila in Khagrachhari hill district.
A murder case was filed against five people, including three sons of Rahimuddin Varosha, with the Additional Cheif Judical Magistrate's Court here yesterday.
About 50 girl students of a primary school under Patuakhali Sadar uapzila were attacked by unknown disease yesterday.
Aggrieved students of BM College yesterday foiled second year honours examinations of 18 departments and handed over memorandum to the principal demanding necessary action to check outsider troublemakers on the campus.
A faction of Feni BNP yesterday demanded removal of major (retd) Syeed Eskander, the newly appointed convenor of the party's district unit.
The Chief Judicial Magistrate's Court, Kurigram, yesterday granted bail to Dr Shahidul Alam of Drik Gallery in a case filed against him by BDR on charge of his illegal entry into Indian territory.
Pahari Chhatra Parishad (PCP), student front of Parbattya Chattgram Jana Sanghati Samity (PCJSS), yesterday took out processions in the town protesting alleged attempt to kidnap one of their leaders from the party office by some armed rivals on Wednesday night.
Shibchar police on Tuesday arrested BNP leader and Banskandi Union Parishad (UP) chairman Shahidul Islam on charges of desecrating the portrait of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and ransacking Banskandi UP office in 2003. Shahidul is the younger brother of Madaripur district Jamaat-e-Islami secretary Hemayet Hossain Mridha. Police arrested Shahidul from his house at Banskandi. He was later sent to jail custody. Banskandi union Awami League general secretary Hamidul Islam earlier filed a case against Shahidul in connection with the incident.
A schoolboy who went missing Monday morning was found dead in a jute field the next day at village Garibpur Mardapara under Chitalmari upazila of Bagerhat district. Sujon Biswas, 15, was only son of shrimp trader Shushil Biswas and a student of class ten at Chardakatia High School. Locals said, the body was located at the jute field when the pet dog of the shrimp trader started unusual barking at the spot. Reason for Sujon's death could not be known.
A housewife and her son received burn injury as criminals threw acid on them Tuesday night. Amena Begum, 20, wife of Abul Kalam of village Itbaria and her one-year-old child Rezaul were sleeping when a gang allegedly led by Eusuf Howlader entered her house at about 10 pm and threw acid on them and fled away. Amena was admitted to Patuakhali General Hospital the same night. Family sources said, the attack might be a sequel to a land dispute with their neighbour.
A housewife was murdered allegedly for dowry at village Bisnupur under Khaliajuri upzaila Tuesday night. Khaliajuri police recovered the body yesterday from a jungle near the house of the victim. Police said, Salma Begum,20, wife of Niamat Ullah was daughter of one Karamat Ali of the same village. Fatema Begum, mother of the victim, claimed that although they gave Tk 75,000 and other valuables as dowry at the time of marriage, Niamat and his parents used to torture Salma for Tk 50,000 more. Niamat was arrested after a case was filed with Khaliajuri police station in this connection.
One person was beaten to death for theft at a jewelry shop yesterday at village Madandanga under Shailkupa upazila.
Traders at the district town will keep their shutters down for six hours from 6 am today to protest the bid to hold trade fair by the Moulvibazar Chamber of Commerce and Industries (MCCI). The traders under the banner of 'General Businessmen of Moulvibazar' yesterday observed a token hunger strike at Chawmuhana Square. During today's programme announced after the hunger strike, all shops and other business establishments will remain closed. They will also form human chain at Central Road on Saturday. Traders and town dwellers are opposing this trade fair saying it will affect ordinary traders and environment of the town. However, the MCCI told journalists yesterday the move to stop the fair in the name of general businessmen is a conspiracy against the MCCI. They said no unethical events like gambling, lottery draw will take place at the fair.
Abul Khair, SI of Barisal Kotwali Police Station, was closed to Barisal Metropolitan Police Line yesterday for torturing a rickshaw-van puller. Abdur Rahim, commissioner in-charge of BMP told newsmen that the action was taken after the departmental probe found SI Khair guilty. Sources said rickshaw- van puller Abul Kalam, 25, was mercilessly beaten up by Khair on Monday in Munshir Garage area after his van and a police pickup collided there.
US President Barack Obama has warned that nuclear North Korea is a "grave threat" and said he would not tolerate the Stalinist state's provocative strategy of extracting rewards with belligerent behaviour.
Civilians who lived under the Taliban's harsh rule in Pakistan's Swat Valley may soon be recruited to police the region with preference going to those hit hardest during the militants' two-year campaign of terror, a top official says.
Iran's under-fire President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Tuesday sat alongside world leaders at a summit in Russia, defiantly proclaiming the age of empires was over and attacking the United States.
President Barack Obama said Tuesday he would press home his "tough diplomacy" towards Iran whatever the result of its electoral tumult and warned US meddling in Tehran's politics would backfire.
Myanmar's junta is allowing "flagrant" rights violations in the trial of democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi and must ensure proceedings are fair and open, UN human rights experts said.
India would review Pakistan's actions against anti-India terror outfits before deciding on resuming the composite dialogue mid-July, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said Wednesday, a day after he met Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari in Russia.
The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eeelam (LTTE), the rebel group recently defeated by the Sri Lankan military, have announced the formation of a "provisional transnational government" to pursue an autonomous homeland for the Tamil population.
The US Senate Foreign Relations Committee has passed the enhanced aid bill for Pakistan offering 1.5 billion dollars annually over the next five years.
Pakistani police said Wednesday they had arrested three men suspected of planning a suicide attack near Islamabad, while a suspect from an al-Qaeda-linked group was held in Karachi.
Malian security forces have killed around 20 suspected al-Qaeda followers in a raid near the Algerian border targeting a cell thought to have executed a British hostage, security sources said.
Arts & Entertainment
Aliya Sharafi, daughter of legendary singer Kalim Sharafi, is a talented musician in her own right. Currently working as an interpreter in three languages in the office of the Attorney General in the Ontario Court of Justice, she hopes to perform in Bangladesh end July/August.
Theatre troupe Bongorango staged the play "Roshadhar Sudhadhar-er Rajyo" on June 16 at the Mahila Samity Auditorium. The play, the third production of the troupe, is a satire on the ills of contemporary society, particularly corruption.
A session of Tagore songs was arranged at the premises of Sylhet Sangskrit College recently, commemorating the great Nobel Laureate. Bangladesh Rabindra Sangeet Shilpi Sangstha organised the captivating two hour-programme.
The Hindol Sangeet Academy (HSA), observed the birth anniversary of Tagore and Nazrul at Kobi Jasimuddin hall in the town on June 13.
The monsoons are here! The Boithoki Ganeer Ashor was recently celebrated for the first time in Chapainawabganj. The welcome day was observed at a mango orchard of Pathan para in the town. The joint organisers were Ektara Shilpi Gosthi and Mohananda Sangeet Niketan.
Today marks the death anniversary of Zahidur Rahim, a renowned Tagore singer of pre and post-Liberation Bangladesh. Rahim was one of the frontline campaigners against the ban on Rabindra Sangeet in the late 1960s by the then Pakistan regime. During those tumultuous times, Rahim played a stellar role in preserving this genre at that time through his renderings of Rabindra Sangeet at various programmes.
THE recently concluded conference on river pollution held at the Daily Star premises was an important step for bringing some important policy issues to the national spotlight. In the past, both the government and our civil society had identified our major environmental problems, and the government had taken some steps to mitigate them. The effectiveness of these initiatives has been mixed.
THE first budget of the incumbent Finance Minister, A.M.A. Muhith certainly stirred an intense debate at least in two areas: the projected growth estimate for the 2009-10 (5.5-6.0%) fiscal year and about the proposed approach to whitening black money. Sensing the discord among leading economists and former finance advisers, the FM was on the back foot on both the issues the next day when other economists also addressed the media.
Delay in repairing town protection embankment has been posing a great threat to life and properties at coastal belt of the port city.
The city dwellers here have been facing untold sufferings while commuting on public vehicles due to chaos in the transport sector.