The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Sunday, April 20, 2014


News of: Saturday, 20th of June, 2009

Front Page

MPs to make local development plans

Lawmakers are likely to get huge authority over implementing local development projects in their constituencies through the LGRD ministry in the coming fiscal year.

First swine flu case detected

The first case of swine flu infection in the country was detected on June 18.

BNP reformists active again at all levels

Despite strong opposition from influential sections of BNP, the so-called reformist leaders of the party have started to become active again in the organisation's central and grassroots level, since they were allowed to come back into the party's mainstream by Chairperson Khaleda Zia.

Evicted, now threatened

Orao Arju's teenage daughter Shanibala is still upset by last week's eviction and arson attacks on 74 families, including 56 indigenous families, in Khatirpur allegedly by an influential land grabber.

Iran's supreme leader warns against violence

Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei called yesterday for an end to street protests over last week's disputed presidential election, siding with declared winner Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Changes a must

The usual summer-time calm of the world's longest beach was broken yesterday with the vibrant gathering of thousands of youths pledging to make the country a developed Bangladesh.

Environmentalists oppose coal export, open-pit method

The government's coal policy should not provide for coal export and open-mining method, experts and environmentalists said yesterday.

Clock time goes 1-hr forward

Bangladesh forwarded the clock an hour at 11:00pm last night in a bid to save electricity by utilising the daylight better.

Govt goes slow on MRP scheme

Bangladesh may fail to implement its machine-readable passport (MRP) and machine-readable visa (MRV) projects within the April 2010 international deadline because of the government's inaction.

Turag freed of more structures

Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority and Dhaka district administration yesterday demolished around 15 tin-shed structures constructed illegally on the river Turag near Gabtali-Amin Bazar bridge in the city.

Tipaimukh data received from India

India has sent information to water resources ministry about the 'controversial' Tipaimukh Dam responding to requests from Bangladesh, said Foreign Minister Dipu Moni yesterday.

RMG factory fire kills 1 in Savar

A person was burnt alive and at least 15 others were injured in a devastating fire that gutted valuable machinery and goods of a readymade garment factory in Savar yesterday.

Criminals gun down city BNP leader

A BNP ward leader was shot dead by unidentified criminals early yesterday in the city's Mohammadpur area.

Over 50 injured as two groups clash in city

Over 50 people were injured last night during a clash between supporters of Dewanbagh pir and locals of Kachukhet.

Muggers stab 2 policemen in Kushtia

Two policemen including a sub-inspector (SI) were stabbed by muggers at Hauskhali in Daulatpur upazila of Kushtia district on Thursday night.

Faruk warns of legal steps

Commerce Minister Faruk Khan yesterday said the government will take legal steps against those who had distorted the history of liberation war.

Sarod maestro Ali Akbar Khan passes away

Sarod maestro Ustad Ali Akbar Khan passed away in San Francisco in the US after a prolonged kidney ailment, according to a family friend in Kolkata.

Evicted people must get their homes back

A special team formed to investigate the incident of eviction of indigenous families from their homesteads on June 13 at Porsha upazila of Naogaon came up with a seven-point demand after a field level visit to the spot.

DU teachers, students join campaign to save rivers

Teachers, students, officials and staff of Dhaka University (DU) yesterday expressed solidarity with the efforts to save rivers and urged all to rise to the occasion to save environment and save Dhaka.

18 held as suspected militants, 3 freed

The Rajshahi police last night released three of the 18 people including children held as suspected militants of Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) during a raid in Tikapara area in the morning.

World's hungry cross 1b: FAO

The number of hungry in the world has reached a "historic high" of more than one billion people, the UN food agency said yesterday, blaming the global financial crisis for the surge.

Pak militants bomb schools in tribal area

Militants blew up two boys' schools and a college in Bajaur tribal area in northwest Pakistan, an official said yesterday, as an offensive against the Taliban rumbled on in nearby districts.

Nigerian militants say they destroyed oil pipeline

Nigeria's main militant group said it destroyed yesterday a major pipeline supplying crude oil to Italian oil group Agip's Brass exports terminal.

Editorial

Restructuring intelligence bodies

We believe Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's decision to restructure the nation's intelligence bodies and ensure better and effective coordination among them is a right and necessary step considering the many happenings which have regularly left these bodies under a cloud. Indeed, since August 1975, when Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and nearly his entire family were wiped out in a bloody coup, the failure of the many intelligence organisations to detect or put the finger on conspiracies in the making has been glaring. And dearly has the country paid for such lapses on the part of bodies whose professionalism should have averted the many tragic incidents we have seen happen in our lifetime. The failure to spot the August 15 conspiracy was followed, in embarrassing manner, by the inability of the intelligence bodies to apprehend the plot to murder President Ziaur Rahman in May 1981. And only recently, in February this year, the absolute failure of these bodies to understand that conspiracy was afoot among the rank and file of the Bangladesh Rifles led to the murder of seventy people, fifty-seven of them military officers of various ranks.

Eviction of indigenous people

The news out of Khatirpur at Porsha in Naogaon, where over 50 indigenous families have been attacked and forcibly evicted from their land, shocks us all. We unequivocally condemn this barbarous act, and strongly urge the government to take remedial action.

An ambitious budget

FINANCE Minister AMA Muhith has presented a national budget for fiscal 2009-10 with hopes that it will mitigate effectively the impacts of global recession on the Bangladesh economy, maintain macroeconomic stability and help develop infrastructures relying more on the concept of public- private partnership (espoused in recent months by the FBCCI).

No more feather dust approach, please

THE first budget of the incumbent Finance Minister, AMA Muhith, was delivered on 11 June and it certainly stirred an intense debate at least in two areas: the projected growth estimate for 2009-10 (5.5-6.0 percent) fiscal year and about the approach budget paper proposed to whitening black money. Sensing the discord by the leading economists and former finance advisers, the FM was at the back foot on both the issues the next day (12th), when other economic minsters also addressed the media.

Towards a pro-people direction

THE finance minister placed the 38th budget of Bangladesh for 2009-10 fiscal before the parliament on June 11, 2009. Incidentally, this is his maiden budget. Because of the people's high expectations, the size of the budget had to be a bit (14%) larger than the last budget. The budget is considered as the first step towards realising the visions for 2021.

Sports

Ashraf comes down hard

Gazi Ashraf Hossain defended his right of opinion and reacted strongly to comments made by Bangladesh captain Mohammad Ashraful as the fallout of Bangladesh's disastrous ICC World Twenty20 Cup campaign continued on Friday.

Booters leave for camp today

A 26-member preliminary squad led by coach Edson Silva Dido and containing rookie U-16 player Al Amin will leave for Cox's Bazar early today morning to take part in a three-week long strength and conditioning camp to prepare for the three upcoming international football meets later this year.

It's our turn now: Younus

Pakistan captain Younus Khan wants his team to win the ICC World Twenty20 title to bring joy to the millions in his volatile country starved of big-time cricket.

We're not chokers: Smith

South African captain Graeme Smith will not let his team be branded chokers anymore despite failing to make the final of the ICC World Twenty20 here.

Win brings joy at home

Pakistanis rejoiced Friday as their cricket team beat South Africa and booked a place in the ICC World Twenty20 final, bringing rare joy in a nation used to sombre news of bomb blasts and Taliban violence.

Egypt stun Italy

Egypt hailed its shock victory over world champions Italy in the Confederations Cup as one of its best ever, but for Marcello Lippi's men it was a disaster.

Feni in final

Feni Soccer Club beat Shaheed Muktijoddha Moeen Smriti Sangsad 3-2 in the tie-breaker, following a goalless draw during the stipulated period to advance into the final of the Bashundhara Champions Club Cup at the Jessore Stadium yesterday.

Grameenphone President Cup golf begins

The 8th Grameenphone President Cup Pro-Am Golf Tournament 2009 was officially inaugurated at the Kurmitola Golf Club (KGC) yesterday.

India reach Jamaica

Two days after their ICC World Twenty20 campaign ended, the Indian team has landed in Jamaica for their next assignment, a four-ODI series against West Indies.

Good night's rest do the trick: Dunga

Spain may be the best team in the world but with the World Cup less than a year away Brazil, with Thursday's majestic 3-0 win over the United States, reminded the world that they can play a bit too.

Mokoena urges S Africa

South Africa captain Aaron Mokoena has urged the country to get behind the national team when they play Spain on Saturday for a place in the Confederations Cup semi-finals.

Cahill's plea to Viduka

Australia's two-goal hero Tim Cahill has urged undecided striker Mark Viduka to return to the international fold to spearhead the Socceroos' World Cup bid in South Africa next year.

Vuvuzela in spotlight

The vuvuzela is an integral part of a fan's armoury in Africa, the noisy plastic trumpet as essential an item as getting decked out in the national colours or painting one's face.

FIFA bans TV monitors

Television monitors will no longer be allowed alongside the pitch at the Confede-rations Cup following Brazil's controversial winning penalty against Egypt.

Monaco sign Traore

Malian international defender Djimi Traore signed for French first division side Monaco on Thursday from English Premier League outfit Portsmouth, the French club announced.

Real Madrid confident on Villa

Real Madrid president Florentino Perez on Thursday declared that the transfer of Valencia's Spanish international striker David Villa to the nine-time European champions was "a matter of time".

Milan want Dzeko

Bringing Bosnian striker Edin Dzeko from Wolfsburg to Italy is a top priority, AC Milan said on Friday.

Zidan pays tribute to Zidane

While not in the same class as French great Zinedine Zidane, Egypt's star striker Mohamed Zidan has revealed his admiration for his namesake.

Torres happy at Liverpool

Liverpool striker Fernando Torres has told Manchester United and Barcelona to forget about trying to lure him from Anfield.

Blues match Reds' bid for Johnson

Portsmouth executive chairman Peter Storrie revealed on Friday that Chelsea have matched Liverpool's 17.5 million pounds bid for England defender Glen Johnson.

'No plans to coach KKR'

Steve Waugh, the former Australia captain, has said he has no plans at the moment to coach Kolkata Knight Riders, the IPL team that on Thursday sacked John Buchanan as its director of cricket. Waugh's name has been doing the rounds along with those of two fellow former Australian cricketers, Dav Whatmore and Michael Bevan.

Maria happy to be back

Maria Sharapova admits the only things that helped her survive a gruelling battle to recover from persistent shoulder problems was her love of cooking and a good book.

Taylor leads Eng into final

Claire Taylor's unbeaten 76 saw England into the final of the women's World Twenty20 as they beat archrivals Australia by eight wickets at The Oval here on Friday.

Katich serious about Ashes success

Simon Katich admits he is desperate to erase the bitter memories of his last Ashes tour as the Australia batsman bids to make the most of an unexpected return to England.

Sehwag may miss Champs Trophy

Virender Sehwag, the Indian batsman, could miss the Champions Trophy in September as he recovers from the shoulder injury that kept him out of the ICC World Twenty20. Sehwag underwent surgery on June 11 after a lesion was identified in his shoulder, and is expected to be out of action for around 12 to 16 weeks.

Gayle wary of India revenge

West Indies captain Chris Gayle expects India to be back to their best when the teams meet in the Caribbean for a one-day series starting next week.

Amzad Ali, BKSP win

Amzad Ali Sarker Pilot Girls School 'B' and BKSP won their respective matches in the Girls School Cricket Tournament at separate city venues yesterday.

Nawsheen fires 2nd hattrick

Nawsheen scored a brilliant hattrick enabling Sir John Wilson School to emerge as Group-D champions ending Scholastica's winning run by a 3-1 margin in the Citycell Dhaka Metropolis Women's School Football Championship at the Sultana Kamal Sports Complex at Dhanmondi, Dhaka yesterday.

Villa not for sale

Spanish Primera Liga side Valencia on Friday insisted that star striker David Villa is "not for sale", despite earlier reports that he was on the brink of a transfer to Real Madrid.

Metropolitan

Resolve problems with int'l rivers thru' joint initiatives

Finance Minister AMA Muhith yesterday urged all to be aware of any movement against the Tipaimukh dam by a certain quarter to gain its political interest.

Nalchhity RMO injured by Jubo League men

The resident medical officer (RMO) of Nalchhity upazila health complex in Jhalakathi was injured on Thursday evening as he was beaten up by Jubo League cadres at his chamber in RMO quarter being refused of toll.

Tax on private varsities protested

Speakers at a seminar on Thursday criticised the imposition of 15 percent tax on the private universities in the national budget, saying that it would hinder economic growth and development for want of clear-cut policy and guideline for human resources development.

'Honest leadership a must to free country from hunger'

Former adviser to a caretaker government Sultana Kamal yesterday stressed the need for honest and transparent leadership to build a hunger- and poverty-free Bangladesh.

Adopt pro-people policy to deal with water, power crises

Communist Party of Bangladesh (CPB) President Manjurul Ahsan Khan yesterday said the government has to adopt a pro-people policy in dealing with problems related to water, power, gas, traffic, employment and other fundamental rights in the country.

Abducted child rescued after 19 days

After 19 days of abduction of three-and-a-half-year-old child Elizabeth alias Buri from the city's Gulshan, detectives rescued the girl from suburban Tongi area on Thursday night.

Mango, silk, Gambhira festival begins in Rajshahi

A three-day mango, silk and Gambhira festival began in Rajshahi yesterday with a call for promoting local products and culture.

College teacher stabbed to death at Gobindaganj

A lecturer of a local college in Gobindaganj upazila here was stabbed to death by a gang of miscreants while he was returning home from Kamdia on Thursday night.

Lightning kills two in Satkhira

Two people, including a shrimp farmer and a woman, were killed when lightning struck them in separate incidents in Satkhira on Thursday evening.

Robbers stab man to death

Robbers stabbed a man to death, injured his son and looted valuables worth around Tk one lakh at Kanaidanga at Moheshpur in the district early yesterday.

Motorcycle snatcher held

Police arrested a criminal while he was trying to snatch a motorcycle from a businessman in Natore town on Thursday night.

GP distributes free saplings at superstores

Grameenphone Ltd distributed free saplings at Agora and Nandan superstores in the city yesterday.

Acid attacker now threatens victim's family

Shahajudddin Mia, who threw acid on the face of his wife Rebeka on May 28, is now threatening to attack his daughter and son-in-law with acid as they refused to withdraw the case filed against him.

24 injured in mob-police clash in Keraniganj

At least 24 people, including two Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) members and a TV cameraman, were injured in a clash between the police and a mob, who were demanding uninterrupted power supply, at Jinjira Monu Beparir Dhal on Thursday night.

World Refugee Day today

Today is World Refugee Day. The day will be observed in the country as elsewhere across the globe in a befitting manner.

Schoolboy stabbed to death

A schoolboy was stabbed to death in Rajbari compound area in Comilla town yesterday.

'Formulate laws to make admin free from politicisation'

Speakers at a seminar yesterday called for formulating necessary laws for bringing the key posts of the administration under spoil system to make the public administration free from politicisation.

Bus owners of 5 southern dists threaten indefinite strike

Bus Owners' Associations of Khulna, Bagerhat, Barisal, Pirojpur and Jhalakathi districts have threatened an indefinite strike from June 30 if their six-point demand are not met by June 29.

Six killed in road accidents

Six people were killed in separate road accidents in Kushtia, Lalmonirhat, Magura and Madaripur in last two days.

BATB's sapling distribution begins in Ctg

Industries Minister Dilip Barua yesterday inaugurated a sapling distribution programme of British Ame-rican Tobacco Bangladesh (BATB) at Mercantile Marine House field in Chittagong.

'Provide more allocation for garment workers'

Workers' Party of Bangladesh President Rashed Khan Menon MP yesterday demanded additional allocation for the garment workers as they are deprived of justified salaries compared to their efforts.

Report on BDR reform in a week

Commerce Minister Faruk Khan yesterday said the committee for reorganising Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) would submit its proposals within a week to the government and a decision in this regard would be then made soon.

Bombs found at JU hall

Two bombs were recovered from a bathroom sunshade of Maulana Bhasani Hall at Jahangirnagar University yesterday. One of them went off.

Toda new chief representative of JICA

Dr Takao Toda will arrive in Dhaka today as new chief representative of JICA Bangladesh Office, says a press release.

Chehlum of Wazed Miah held

Chehlum of late Dr MA Wazed Miah, an eminent nuclear scientist and the husband of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, was held in Dhaka and his village home in Rangpur yesterday.

Housewife commits suicide

A housewife allegedly committed suicide at her Indira Road residence in the city yesterday.

BYLC launches youth leadership programme

The inaugural ceremony of 'Building Bridges through Leadership Training', the 2nd month-long leadership training programme of Bangladesh Youth Leadership Centre (BYLC), was held at Biam Foundation in the city yesterday.

International

West warns Iran over protests

Britain summoned Iran's ambassador yesterday as the international powers made new warnings to the Tehran leadership over the handling of election result demonstrations.

Pak army on horns of dilemma over how to tackle Taliban

As Pakistan looks to open new fronts against the Taliban and other extremists, and particularly against the Tehreek-e-Taliban (TTP) chief Baitullah Mehsud in South Waziristan, some vital questions, which have emerged from the Swat offensive, have remained unanswered.

Troops kill 23 Taliban in S Afghanistan

Afghan and international troops have killed 23 Taliban militants in various operations in southern Afghanistan, one of which also left a policeman dead, authorities said yesterday.

BJP's soul-searching meet today

There will be key absentees even as the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) holds its first high-level assessment of its election defeat and looks for ways to revive cadre morale at the two-day national executive meeting that begins here Saturday.

US, Kyrgyzstan reach deal on Afghan transit

Kyrgyzstan has reached an agreement with the United States that will open up its territory for the transit of non-lethal cargo to support Nato forces in Afghanistan, the foreign minister said Friday.

West Bengal villagers caught between security forces and Maoists

Fear stalks the villagers trapped in the exchange of fire between the security forces and the Maoist rebels who declared Lalgarh region of West Bengal 'liberated zone'.

Global campaign marks Suu Kyi's 64th birthday

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi spent her 64th birthday locked in prison Friday as global condemnation over her trial and demands for her freedom erupted across Twitter, Facebook and other Web sites and at rallies worldwide.

Army offensive threatens Pakistan itself

Pakistani opposition figure and cricket legend Imran Khan said Thursday an army offensive was threatening the country itself and urged the United States to wind down its involvement in Afghanistan.

India, China agree to set up hotline

India and China have agreed to establish a hotline at the highest political level -- between the prime ministers of the two countries -- in next one month to promote better understanding.

UN steps up security for its staff across Pakistan

Worried by the recent terror strikes in Pakistan in which some its officials were also killed, the United Nations (UN) has beefed up the security of its staff and offices across the country.

CPI-M politburo meets to discuss polls debacle

The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) politburo met here Friday to discuss the Maoist violence in Lalgarh in West Bengal, problems in the party's Kerala unit and the debacle in the Lok Sabha elections.

NDA, UPA gear up for Jharkhand Rajya Sabha polls today

The ruling United Progressive Alliance (UPA) and the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) are both geared up for the election to two Rajya Sabha seats from Jharkhand Saturday, making all attempts to keep their flock together and seeking support of smaller parties to ensure their candidates win.

Krishna talks regional situation with Bhutan

On his maiden foreign visit after taking over as External Affairs Minister, S M Krishna today held wide-ranging talks with Bhutanese King Khesar Namgyel Wangchuck and other leaders, discussing bilateral ties and regional matters, including the security situation in Nepal.

Rahul Gandhi turns 39

Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi, who was instrumental in the Congress' emergence as the single largest party in recently concluded Lok Sabha polls, turned 39 on Friday.

Obama's Iran reaction sparks intense debate in US

US reaction to events in Iran has sparked fierce debate among American lawmakers, the media and the administration amid concern President Barack Obama has not voiced sufficient support for the demonstrators in Tehran.

US boosts Hawaii defence to counter N Korea threat

The United States says it has deployed anti-missile defences around Hawaii, following reports that North Korea is preparing to fire its most advanced ballistic missile in that direction to coincide with the US Independence Day holiday next month.

EU clinches deal on Irish treaty vote

Ireland secured yesterday legal guarantees on sovereignty issues from European partners to pave the way for a second Irish referendum on the EU's reform treaty, the EU presidency confirmed.

Muslim rebels killed 115 teachers in Thai south

Muslim insurgents in southern Thailand must stop the "sickening trend" of attacking teachers, 115 of whom have been killed since the outbreak of the separatist rebellion five years ago, a human rights organisation said yesterday.

Britain mulls holding Iraq war probe in public

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown's office paved the way Thursday for a possible U-turn on holding an inquiry into the Iraq war in private, as criticism of the behind-closed-doors plan grew.

Zardari opts out of another meeting with Manmohan

In a sudden development, President Asif Ali Zardari has decided not to attend the NAM Summit in Egypt next month, apparently to avoid another meeting with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh whose blunt public comments appear to have annoyed Pakistan. Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani will lead the Pakistani delegation to the Summit at Sharm-el Shaikh on July 15, the Foreign Office announced, a day after Singh had told reporters that he and Zardari would be meeting on the sidelines of the Summit.

Nasa blasts off two moon probes

Nasa blasted two probes into space Thursday on a landmark lunar exploration mission to scout water sources and landing sites in anticipation of sending mankind back to the moon in 2020.

Arts & Entertainment

Breathing life into Tagore’s characters

Sanglap Group Theatre, a troupe from Mirpur is celebrating its 31st anniversary with a theatre festival featuring Rabindranath Tagore's plays. Six plays by troupes from the capital and outside -- originally written by Tagore or adaptations of his works -- are being staged at the festival, which began on June 18. The plays are being staged at the Experimental Theatre Hall, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) at 8pm everyday till June 24.

Fête de la Musique comes to Dhaka again

Music is a symbol of peace and harmony and invariably lifts our spirits. Many of us can't dream of a world without songs. A musician explores the beauty around him through melody, which brings forth hidden emotions -- happiness, sorrow and nostalgia.In 1982, a study discovered that five million people (two million of them youngsters) out of 55 million, played a musical instrument in France. Jack Lang, the then Minister for Culture, dreamed of bringing all those people together on the street for an immensely popular celebration. Three weeks later, Fete de La Musique or the World Music Festival was launched in France, on June 21, 1982. On the initiative of the Ministry for Culture and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the music celebration has been exported from France since 1985.

Stories of triumphant women

Oppression of women is as old as the human civilisation. History only narrates and highlights the bravado of kings and warriors, carefully sidelining the contributions of women and the inspiration they provided.

“Bijoyini”: Special play on Sufia Kamal’s birth anniversary

On the 98th birth anniversary on poet-litterateur-activist Sufia Kamal, Rtv will air a single-episode play “Bijoyini” tonight at 9 pm. Adapted by Delwar Hossain from a story by Sufia Kamal, the play has been directed by Rawshan Ara Nipa.

OP-ED

Saving Dhaka's polluted rivers: Drawing on recent experiences

Greater Dhaka has been a major engine of growth and prosperity in Bangladesh, representing more than 40% of Bangladesh's national GDP. This rapidly growing city of 12 million inhabitants has also emerged as a major hub for over 7000 small and medium scale industries.

Gaziul Huq: A personal recollection

It is the arts faculty building of Dacca University sometime in the early nineteen fifties. The lawn of the faculty is green. There is the mango tree. At the north-west corner of the lawn stands a low tin-shed called Modhur Restaurant, where one could spend hours over cups of tea and raise storms in them. The place is always crowded. And from that crowd one could hear a roar of laughter that would burst out of that tin-shed, and then roll on to the lawn, spread past the mango tree and way beyond. That laughter could only be Gaziul Huq's .

Directives must be complied with

For the last three decades the slow but certain devastation caused by industrial pollution and has been going on unabated. Only a either in the administration or politics have kept track of the toll it has been exacting on the national life. Concerned citizenry and the national electronic and print media have from time to time raised alarm but all these seem to have fallen on deaf ears.

Urban

Slums are forever

PUSH' from the village and 'pull' factors from the city have been compelling the Bangladeshi rural poor, depleting by percentage versus urban population, to migrate to urban centres for decades, the upshot being the doubling of the number of slums since independence.

Urban slums of Bangladesh

Background
Though still comparatively rural, Bangladesh has an urban population of about 35 million, or just over 25 percent of its total population. Moreover, the urban population has been growing very rapidly since liberation in 1971 and continues to do so at over 3.5 percent annually. The country will likely have an urban population approaching 50 million by 2015.This rapid growth has been due primarily to migration by the rural poor, particularly to large metropolitan areas. On arrival, these poor migrants routinely turn to slums and squatter settlements for shelter. All major urban centres in Bangladesh have slums and squatter settlements, the largest concentrations being in Dhaka, followed by Chittagong, Khulna, and Rajshahi.

Literature

Jinnah Coat*

Sixteen years ago, I went to bid my father farewell. He sat on a leather recliner on the veranda of our ancestral village home in Ghorasal, on the outskirts of Dhaka. He held onto my hand very tightly. We have the same hands, father and daughter, hands that many found hard to tell apart. At that moment, it seemed our two hands intertwined as if they belonged to the same person. After a while, he let go, and I was sure it would be for the very last time.

The Other Borges

Only a few weeks ago, I caught a programme on BBC's Radio 4 in which Borges's recorded voice told the world that when he and I sat down to translate his stories and poems we did not regard what we were doing as work but rather as fun. That must have been in 1970 or 1971. And he was right. Our work together was fun; he made it so. There was nothing stodgy about Jorge Luis Borges, nothing formidable or forbidding. He knew his work was a cosmic game and he never wanted to be seen taking it or himself too seriously.

On Jibanananda's maalay, malay, and malayali

The author of this book (Barisal and Beyond: Essays on Bangla Literature; New Delhi: Chronicle Books; 2008) is the protagonist of a charming inter-cultural romance. Clinton Seely is one of fewer than a handful of living Westerners who fortuitously fell in love with Bengali literature and made a distinguished career of teaching it - at the University of Chicago in his case. A major in Botany from Stanford, he volunteered for the Peace Corps and spent a year and nine months (1963-65) training high school science teachers in Barisal, in present-day Bangladesh. In the process he picked up Bangla (or Bengali) and, through the desultory chitchat that Bengalis call adda, gathered some idea about the greatest writer in the language, Rabindranath Tagore. At the end of his stint he enrolled for a PhD at the Department of South Asian Languages and Civilisations, University of Chicago and discovered Bengal's greatest modern poet, whose hometown was his familiar Barisal. His thesis, published as A Poet Apart: A Literary Biography of the Bengali Poet Jibanananda Das (1889-1954), won him West Bengal's most prestigious literary award. His other publications include three translated volumes, of which the one of Michael Madhusudan Datta's epic, The Slaying of Meghnada: A Ramayana from Colonial Bengal, got him the A.K. Ramanujan Book Prize for Translation.

Star Health

Vision can be saved if detected early

A most common primary intraocular (inside the eyes) malignancy of childhood arises from primitive retinal cells of the eye. About 90% cases are diagnosed less than 3 years of age.

What are the anti aging foods?

Some of the features that characterise aging are formation of wrinkles, low energy levels, memory loss, health problems like osteoporosis, weak muscles and bones etc. It is not your age that decides your youthfulness, but it is your inner feelings that make you feel you are old.

Group recommends easier test to diagnose diabetes

A simple blood test that indicates average blood sugar levels over the past several weeks is the best way to diagnose diabetes, and doctors can abandon older, clumsier tests, diabetes experts said.

Overeating: What causes it?

It may seem obvious, but it is worth saying that we eat for many reasons — hunger and appetite, of course — but also to celebrate, to be social, to soothe and to relieve boredom. To prevent overeating and weight gain, we first have to understand what drives us to eat.

The power of turmeric powder

Turmeric has been used in traditional Asian medicine to treat wounds, arthritic pain, infections, scabies (when used on the skin) and other illnesses over 2500 years in the South Asian region. And it is long been believed that the main ingredient of turmeric — known as 'curcumin' is responsible for its healing power; but it has not been known how curcumin exactly works inside the human body.

New programme seeks to deliver vaccines to poor

Five governments and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation pledged $1.5 billion to help give poor countries better access to vaccines against pneumococcal disease such as pneumonia and meningitis.

Strategic Issues

Trans-Asian Railway network and Bangladesh

THE intergovernmental agreement on Trans-Asian Railway (TAR) network came into force on 11 June 2009. The agreement comes into effect ninety days after China has ratifed the treaty as its eighth party in March, 2009.

From 'No First Use' to 'No Nuclear Use'

'Resolve' is cardinal to ensure nuclear deterrence. If the 'will' to use nuclear weapons were seen to be lacking, this would impact adversely on deterrence. The Draft Nuclear Doctrine encapsulated this principle thus, “2.6. Deterrence requires that India maintain:...(e) the will to employ nuclear forces and weapons.” The other pillars of deterrence are 'capability' and 'communication' of the capability and will to the opponent. India is seen as doing well in capability building, even if its peer competitor, China, is way ahead. Recent reports suggest that Pakistan is doing equally well.

Star Books Review

Clash of the generals

GENERAL Ziaur Rahman's capacity for cruelty has never been in doubt. The number of Bengalis --- and they include men in the army and air force --- who perished in the five years of his rule as Bangladesh's first military ruler has remained at an all-time high. With as many as eighteen eventually abortive coups launched against his regime, Zia clearly felt that all those involved in those conspiracies needed to be swiftly dispatched. And they were. But, then, this insensitivity in the man was to first manifest itself in the mid-1970s, when the murder of Khaled Musharraf, obviously a more brilliant officer than he, through the misleadingly named sepoy-janata revolution, did not move him at all. Musharraf became a non-person. And so did the political architects of freedom. In Zia's five years in power, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the leaders of the Mujibnagar government remained airbrushed out of national history. In July 1976, Zia felt little or no compunction in sending his 1975 benefactor, Colonel Abu Taher, to the gallows.

Media and the public interest

THE business and economics of media are extensively discussed. Scholars and professionals are concerned about increasing corporatization of the media. In spite of this fact, the topic lags in well-researched books. Sociologist David Croteau and William Hoynes's work provides an introductory discussion on concerns about business and economics of media with socio-economic perspectives. The authors were awarded the prestigious `Robert Picard Award', named after world renowned media economics scholar Robert Picard, by the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (EJMC) in 2002 for their outstanding contribution in the field of media management and economics.

Dancing in graceful rhythm

VICTORIA Bradshaw, just eighteen, falls in love with the playwright Oliver Dobbs. He comes into her life as if in an interlude and suddenly disappears. After two years Victoria reads the news of his play being put up for a show in London. As she is wondering about Oliver, who should appear in person on her doorstep? One morning she opens the door to find Oliver standing outside with a little boy. Victoria invites them in and from then on Victoria finds herself wrapped up in Oliver's life along with his son. Oliver is selfish and egotistical and yet Victoria is unable to get over him, the first love of her life. And soft hearted as she is, she finds herself standing up in a mother's place for little Thomas, Oliver's two-year old son.

A mind of her own

CHITRA Banerjee Divakaruni, the author of novels like Sister of My Heart, Vine of Desire and The Mistress of Spices, has bestowed a literary gift to children in the form of the book, Victory Song.


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