The Daily Star

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Wednesday, July 30, 2014


News of: Tuesday, 7th of July, 2009

Front Page

Moon ride on Dhaka roads

Poor road conditions, delayed repairs and continuous road diggings have left many residents suffering at different places around the city.

Govt's fair price for farmers gobbled up

Massive irregularities have gripped the public food distribution and procurement system in Kushtia as a section of food officials in connivance with dishonest rice traders are pocketing huge money through a 'buyback' arrangement.

Cabinet okays law changes

The cabinet yesterday in principle approved a proposal to amend the International Crimes (Tribunal) Act 1973 to ensure fairness and neutrality in holding trial of war criminals.

140 killed in China riot

Tensions between ethnic Muslims and China's Han majority in the far western Xinjiang region erupted in riots that killed 140 people and injured 828, an official said yesterday, marking the deadliest unrest to hit the volatile area in decades.A peaceful protest Sunday of about 1,000 to 3,000 people in the regional capital, Urumqi, apparently spun out of control, as rioters went on a rampage and clashed with police. The official Xinhua News Agency reported hundreds of people were arrested.

Wealth card from MPs next month

Finance Minister AMA Muhith said yesterday the government will start taking wealth statements of the ministers and lawmakers next month to ensure its transparency and accountability.

Draft law on protection of Bangabandhu family okayed

The cabinet yesterday approved a draft law to ensure security of the family members of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman with immediate effect.

Stocks erratic amid foul play allegations

The stock market has been experiencing an erratic situation for the last two months following an alleged bid by a group of dishonest traders to make extra profit through manipulation.

Unregistered driving schools mushroom

For thousands of aspiring drivers of motor vehicles, the country has only 10 registered learners' schools and five 'qualified' instructors, according to Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTA).

SC rules against tree plunderers

A chamber judge of the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court (SC) yesterday stayed for two weeks all activities on a vast 40-acre forest belt in Sitakunda where a few influential people razed 15,000 Keura and Bain trees on Friday to develop ship-breaking yards.

Feni BNP revolts

The Feni district unit of BNP is rocked by an intra-party dispute over the new district convening committee formed by the party's centre, putting Maj (retd) Saeed Iskandar at the helm.

Dutch help pledged in climate change

The Dutch government would continue to assist Bangladesh in water management, river training and battling the climate-change, said Netherlands's visiting Minister Bert Koenders yesterday.

Probe body to place report by July 9

Speaker Abdul Hamid yesterday said parliament would decide on actions against former speaker Jamiruddin Sircar, his deputy Akhtar Hamid Siddiqui and former chief whip Khandaker Delwar Hossain for alleged graft.

JS body gets fresh graft allegations against Mainul

A parliamentary sub-committee has received reports on a number of fresh irregularities against former adviser of the last caretaker government Mainul Hosein and asked the housing and public works ministry to come up with necessary documents of the allegations in next seven days.

Seven school kids hurt as plaster falls from ceiling

At least seven students of class-I sustained injuries as a large chunk of plaster came off the ceiling of a classroom of Prasanna Poddar Lane Govt Primary School in Kotwali area of the city yesterday.

Russia, US agree on nuke arms cut

The Russian and US leaders Dmitry Medvedev and Barack Obama yesterday announced agreements on Afghanistan and cutting their nuclear arsenals as they sought a new era in battered relations.

Concern over raid on Adcom

Advertisement professionals yesterday expressed concern over the raid, and seizure of equipment, computers and valuable documents of advertising firm Adcom and its associate organisations.

Date for Tipai trip after BNP's nomination

The parliamentary standing committee on water resources ministry yesterday said it would finalise the date for visiting Tipaimukh Dam site on receipt of the BNP lawmaker's name for inclusion in the parliamentary delegation.

HC asks 14 labour leaders to surrender in 8 weeks

The High Court (HC) yesterday directed 14 labour leaders and workers to surrender before the trial court within eight weeks in connection with a case filed against them following the recent vandalism in garment factories in Ashulia.

JCD's 3 units dissolved amid internal conflicts

Top leaders of the newly formed central committee of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) last night dissolved its three units including that of Dhaka University (DU) following a massive intra-party conflict over the new central committee.

Ha-Meem sues 1,600 for arson attack

Ha-Meem Group has filed a case against some 1,600 unnamed people in connection with the arson and vandalism at its factories in Ashulia a week ago.

Two more electrocuted

Electrocution claimed the lives of two more construction labourers in the city's Dhanmondi area last night, raising the death toll from similar incidents to seven in one week.

Editorial

MPs' obligations and duties

Serving as an elected representative of the people is a solemn obligation, but one that the nation's MPs have not, by and large, fulfilled to the extent that those who voted for them would expect. It is thus incumbent upon our parliamentarians to redouble their efforts and buckle down to do the job they were elected to do.

A zoo or a deathtrap for animals?

We cannot but be horrified by a recent report appearing in this newspaper regarding the horrendous conditions that the animals in the Dhaka zoo are living in. What causes us concern in particular is the number of deaths at the zoo. We find the reported death of 18 rare animals in one year very abnormal, particularly of rare species brought in from abroad and relocated to a completely new environment.

Prioritising the pedestrian

MAKING cities "livable for all," is a goal pursued by planners and sought by governments. As income disparity widens in Bangladesh, it is all the more imperative to ensure inclusiveness. One essential area of inclusiveness is the "Right to Movement." The pedestrian has been ignored and the mass bus operations have been marginalised for too long. The government must give the pedestrian the highest priority in the urban movement system along with mass public transport (MPT).

Resisting e-governance

FINANCE Minister A.M.A. Muhith has accused a section of government officials for creating obstacles to the introduction of e-governance in the country, saying that these officials consider information technology (IT) detrimental to their interests. "There are vested quarters in the administration, who never want such development that can affect their interests," he said at a seminar in the city.

Sports

3-dayer drawn

Dashing opener Tamim Iqbal hit 72 as Bangladesh drew their lone three-day warm-up match of their tour of the Caribbean against West Indies A at the Kensington Oval in Barbados on Sunday.

Rookies put Pakistan atop

Debutants Mohammad Aamer and Saeed Ajmal combined to wreck Sri Lanka's batting and put Pakistan on the road to victory in the first cricket Test here on Monday.

'Roger is the best'

Pete Sampras hailed Roger Federer as the greatest player of all time on Sunday after the Swiss superstar surpassed his Grand Slam record with a sixth Wimbledon title.

Andy salutes gladiator

Heartbroken Andy Roddick saluted Roger Federer's gladitorial, record-breaking Wimbledon performance which was appropriately witnessed by Hollywood hard man Russell Crowe.

Aussies unseeded

Reigning 50-over world champions Australia, have been ranked below Bangladesh for next year's World Twenty20 in the Caribbean, organisers announced Sunday.

Wait for more: Federer

Roger Federer has vowed to continue rewriting tennis history, but admitted he feels he still shares Pete Sampras's Grand Slam record rather than having eclipsed his great American friend.

South Asian shooting

Favourite India continued their domination on the second day in the 5th South Asian Shooting Championship at the BKSP shooting range yesterday.

Federer's Grand Slams

Roger Federer won a record 15th Grand Slam title on Sunday when he defeated Andy Roddick to win a sixth Wimbledon crown. The Swiss star has now passed Pete Sampras's mark of 14 Grand Slam victories which he equalled when he won the French Open last month:

Cobb flays young Tigers

England Under-19s made a good start in the first four-dayer against visiting Bangladesh Under-19s at North Marine Road ground in Scarborough yesterday.

Khulna emerge champs

Khulna DFA became champions in the Grameen-Danone Nations Cup Football Tournament when they beat BFF Development squad 2-1 in a tiebreaker in the final at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.

Blues want Terry for life

Chelsea want inspirational captain John Terry to stay at the club "forever" according to new Blues manager Carlo Ancelotti.

Inter's no to duo

Inter Milan president Massimo Moratti told Monday's Corriere dello Sport that the Italian champions have no need to sign Chelsea's Portuguese pair Deco and Ricardo Carvalho.

Carlo promises success

New coach Carlo Ancelotti wants to deliver success early in his reign at Chelsea to ensure he is not left facing questions over his future by the end of the first season.

Egypt revive hopes

Egypt revived hopes of appearing at the World Cup for the first time in 20 years with a 3-0 triumph over Rwanda in Cairo Sunday.

'Greatest series' revisited

The last time the Ashes rivals met in England, in 2005, they produced a thrilling contest.

British press hail Roger

The disappointment of not seeing a British player in the men's final at Wimbledon was forgotten on Monday as newspapers here hailed Roger Federer as the greatest player of all time.

Federer on top again

Roger Federer's Wimbledon triumph on Sunday has seen him regain the world number one spot from archrival Rafael Nadal.

Lee in doubt for Ashes opener

Australia face an anxious wait over the fitness of fast bowler Brett Lee for Wednesday's first Ashes Test here against England after he suffered a rib injury.

'Milan still the best'

AC Milan president and Italy Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi told Monday's Gazzetta dello Sport that his club are still the best in the country despite selling Brazilian superstar Kaka to Real Madrid.

'Schwarzer needs rest'

Fulham manager Roy Hodgson has warned Australian fans not to expect national team goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer to play a full game in Wednesday's pre-season friendly with Gold Coast United.

Ribery denies wanting to quit Bayern

Franck Ribery has denied he wants to leave Bayern Munich for Real Madrid and insists he doesn't want a "controversy" with his club.

Hero's welcome awaits C'Ron

Cristiano Ronaldo was undergoing a medical test on Monday at Real Madrid before being introduced later in the day as the club's latest signing before thousands of fans, completing a deal that makes him the most expensive player in the world.

MU to sign Bordeaux starlet

Manchester United are leading the race to sign Girondins Bordeaux starlet Gabriel Obertan, according to the French Ligue 1 club.

Kanchan no more

Former national hockey player Jasim Uddin Kanchan passed away in the early hours on Monday after suffering from cardiac arrest.

Mexes staying at Roma

France centre-back Philippe Mexes on Monday pledged his future to AS Roma.

Teletalk cricket

Khabongpuriya Samobai Samity Club posted a six-wicket victory over Masterpara Cricket Club in the first Teletalk cricket tournament at the Khagrachari Government High School ground yesterday.

Business

Local ceramics maker rides out global recession

A local ceramics maker, in a span of less than two and a half years, has touched a credit mark of fetching around Tk 31crore from porcelain tableware exports in the immediate past fiscal year (2008-09), riding out the ongoing global recession.

India increases defence, infrastructure spending

India yesterday made a steep hike in its defence spending and outlined measures to boost farmers and the poor and infrastructure as Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee presented in parliament the first budget of the Congress-led UPA government in its second term.

Eggs get costlier as middlemen cash in

Retail prices of eggs have shot up to a record high of Tk 32 for a set of four and industry operators blame the hike on middlemen.

Local company floats coastal ship in Barisal

Khulna-based Prime Shipping Lines, an associate of Sundarban Navigation Company, has entered the local shipbuilding market with completing construction of a coastal ship to be used for carrying goods in coastal areas of the country.

Antipoverty project to reach out to 12 more districts

Social Development Foundation (SDF), a government pilot project financed by World Bank, is set to expand operations in 12 more districts by year-end, aiming to cut poverty.

Seminar stresses better policies for social protection

The governments of Southeast Asian counties need to come up with better policies for social protection, access to ICT, food security and overall development of rural people's livelihood, speakers told a regional seminar here yesterday.

Adopt policy to implement 'charter of change'

A new farm loan policy is going to be introduced from next week aiming to help the country's poor farmers by giving them soft-term loan from the Tk 11,000 crore fund.

BB governor stresses credit card use on internet soon

The central bank governor called upon yesterday the ICT stakeholders to come forward with specific suggestions that can help introduce soon the use of credit card on the internet.

Trade thru' Bhomra land port remains suspended

Border trade through Bhomra land port in Sadar upazila remained suspended since last morning, as Ghojadanga Clearing and Forwarding (C&F) Agents Association in India enforced indefinite strike again at Ghojadanga land port in Basirhat police station after the expiry of the deadline of July 5 they set for resolving the dispute between C&F agents and Indian truckers.

EU summit planned before G20 meet

The European Union's Swedish presidency is planning an extraordinary summit of EU leaders in September ahead of a meeting of the Group of 20 powers in the United States, diplomats said Monday.

New DMD for Mutual Trust Bank

Mutual Trust Bank Ltd (MTB) has promoted Md Hashem Chowdhury to deputy managing director, says a press release.

AKTEL's owning company gets new name

TM International (Bangladesh) Ltd, the company that owns the telecom brand AKTEL, has been renamed as Axiata (Bangladesh) Ltd, says a press release.

HR focus to the rescue

It is not the quantum leap in technology that is crucial to business growth. It is the 'humanware' -- the core asset -- that drives business. Yet in Bangladesh's garment industry, human elements are on the back burner.

G8 days numbered?

The Group of Eight industrialised powers, ineffectual in the face of the worldwide finance crisis, is slowly losing its grip on the global economy and now faces calls for its abolition.

Fears send Asia markets lower

Markets in Asia were mostly lower Monday on continued fears that a global economic recovery may take longer than expected, while investors lacked direction from the United States.

Bankruptcy judge okays GM sale plan

A bankruptcy judge has ruled that General Motors Corp can sell the bulk of its assets to a new company, potentially clearing the way for the automaker to quickly emerge from bankruptcy protection.

S Korea unveils massive plan for green growth

South Korea Monday unveiled an 84 billion dollar five-year plan to develop environmentally friendly industries and use them as a growth engine for the wider economy.

Britain new car sales fall 15.7pc in June

Sales of new cars in Britain dropped 15.7 percent in June from the figure 12 months earlier, the smallest fall for nearly a year, industry body the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders said on Monday.

Japan to sign crisis loan pact with Indonesia

Japan is to agree to provide some 15.6 billion dollars in emergency loans to Indonesia in the event of a severe shortage of foreign currency, according to a report Monday.

Currency

Local Market FX
Local inter-bank FX market was active on Monday. The market was liquid and USD/BDT rate was similar the previous working day.

Metropolitan

Govt to protect historic places related to liberation war

The High Court (HC) was told yesterday that the government will protect and maintain historic places related to liberation war as per the provisions of the constitution.

2 groups chase each other

Two groups of Chittagong south district unit of BNP locked into a chase and counter-chase over the first meeting of the convening committee here yesterday afternoon.

Siamese twin with unusual congenital defects operated upon

The doctors of Paediatric Surgery department at Chittagong Medical College and Hospital (CMCH) performed an operation on a conjoined twin with unusual congenital defects here on Sunday.

Date to visit site July 13: Ramesh

Water Resources Minister Ramesh Chandra Sen yesterday said any dam is harmful but that may be useful too if relation between the countries concerned remains 'good'.

Aggrieved JCD leaders continue protest

Aggrieved leaders and activists of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) continued demonstrations for five consecutive days protesting the newly formed central committee of the organisation.

UZ vice chairmen seek power

Leaders of the newly elected upazila parishad vice chairmen at a view exchange meeting yesterday urged the government to amend some provisions of the Upazila Parishad Act to make the upazila parishad an autonomous body.

EIS to help students learn English to face global challenges

The 'English in Schools' (EIS), a joint initiative of The Daily Star and AKTEL, is a well-timed initiative to help students learn English and prepare themselves to face global challenges, said speakers at the launching ceremony of the programme here yesterday.

'Arrest, punish culprits'

Environmental organisations yesterday demanded arrest and punishment to the culprits who have chopped down around 15,000 trees at Sonaichhari coast of Sitakundu in Chittagong to develop a ship-breaking yard.

'Rural livelihoods in South Asia to be more vulnerable in future'

Rural livelihoods in the South Asian countries will be more exposed to natural calamities in the future because of changes in climate that is already increasing salinity in soil and changing farming patterns, experts said at a seminar yesterday.

HC withdraws earlier rule

The High Court (HC) yesterday withdrew its earlier rule asking the government to explain under which authority the judicial magistrates were functioning.

Four cops among 34 injured in Narsingdi clash

At least 34 people, including Raipura Police Station officer-in-charge and his three colleagues, were injured in a clash between two groups of people at Sapmara Bazaar in Raipura upazila in Narsingdi yesterday.

7 injured as relatives clash with N'ganj hospital staff

Seven people, who were relatives of a patient who died at Narayanganj 200-bed Hospital at Khanpur in the town yesterday, were injured in a clash with the hospital staff.

Rajshahi road crash kills 3

Three people, including a couple, were killed and seven others injured in a road accident at Tanore upazila of Rajshahi yesterday.

Prime accused Hafizur on 3-day remand

The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) yesterday took Md Hafizur Rahman, prime accused in the Chittagong arms haul case, on a three-day remand for further interrogation on the vessel that trasported the illegal consignment.

Dutch minister assures help in dev sector

Visiting Dutch Development Cooperation Minister Bert Koenders yesterday assured Bangladesh of continued Dutch support in development programmes, especially in the field of water management, reclamation of lands, health and education.

HC asks BNP leader Lutfor to surrender before trial court

The High Court (HC) yesterday directed city unit BNP leader Lutfor Rahman popularly known as L Rahman to surrender before the trial court within eight weeks in the Karwan Bazar triple murder case.

Save coastal fisheries

Speakers at a view exchange meeting yesterday urged the government to take effective steps immediately to save coastal fisheries as well as to develop the livelihood of fishermen in the areas so that they can continue their profession.

Police attack protested

Different organisations yesterday strongly condemned the police attack on members of 'Lamppost', a largely unknown organisation, in front of the Indian High Commission in the city on Sunday.

Manhandling of schoolgirl condemned

Bangladesh Mahila Parishad condemned the incident of manhandling an adolescent girl in Sunamganj.

Road crashes kill four

At least four people were killed and seven others injured in separate road accidents in Dhaka and Rajshahi yesterday.

ACC DG's job extended for one year

The service tenure of Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) Director General (admin) Col Hanif Iqbal has been extended for one year till July 6, 2010 yesterday.

76 missing bullets from BDR HQ recovered

Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) recovered 76 bullets of SMG rifle from the city's Hazaribagh area yesterday evening.

Mamun's bail stayed for two weeks

The Supreme Court (SC) chamber bench yesterday stayed for two weeks a High Court (HC) verdict that granted bail to detained Giasuddin Al Mamun, a close aide to BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia's elder son Tarique Rahman, in an extortion case.

National

Top JMB militant Shahadat was a Shibir leader 7 years ago

Chief organiser of 'Islam and Muslim', a new offshoot of banned Islamist militant organisation Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB), Shahadat Hossain alias Abdur Rahim joined JMB seven years ago when he was a leader of Islami Chhatra Shibir.

Young leaders' future looks bleak

Appointment of 'aged leadership' in Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) spread fears among the leaders of other front organisations of BNP as they think they would also be deprived of getting fresh blood in the leadership.

Drive to drive out land grabbers 'an eyewash'

Encroachment and garbage dumping threaten Jail Khal, the only natural canal for carrying water and liquid waste out of Barisal city.

Sylhet court records deposition of PW

A Sylhet court yesterday recorded deposition of a prosecution witness (PW) in the sensational case for bomb blast that took place in the city's Fajilchist area, hours before Sheikh Hasina's election rally at Government Alia Madrasa maidan on the night of September 26, 2001.

Nine sued in Khulna for '71 killing

Nine alleged collaborators of Pakistani occupation forces have been sued for killing a freedom fighter at Jabusha village under Rupsha upazila of Khulna district in 1971.

Abducted man rescued: 4 outlaws held

Rab arrested a group of four outlaws of Janojuddha faction of PBCP-ML for abduction and rescued one Abul Hossain in Jhenidah town yesterday.

CID asked to submit charge sheet Aug 16

A Khulna court has ordered the CID of police to submit supplementary chargesheet of journalist Humayun Kabir Balu murder case on August 16.

BSF kills Bangladeshi

Indian Border Security Force (BSF) on Sunday morning shot dead a Bangladeshi cattle trader on Tarali border under North 24 Parganas district of West Bengal opposite to Kakdanga border in Kalaroa upazila. Sources said, Mafizul Islam, 30, of village Langaljhhara died after BSF men at Tarali camp in Swarupnagar police station opened fire on him when he was returning home. Bangladesh Rifles authorities yesterday sent a letter to BSF authorities protesting the killing and asked them to return the body through holding a flag meeting.

Trader electrocuted

A trader was electrocuted in Narail yesterday. Victim

Jailed for schoolgirl rape

A court in Habiganj on Saturday awarded life term to a man for raping a schoolgirl and also awarded 14 years RI on charge of kidnapping her. Convict Mizanur Rahman, 28, hails from Bangshipa village under Ajmiriganj upazila. According to the prosecution story, Mizan kidnapped Jony Akhtar Chowdhury, student of class VII and daughter of Dr Abdun Nur Chowdhury of the same village on May 17, 2004 when she was on her way to the school. He took her to Habiganj town and then to Chittagong and violated her. Police rescued Jony after a month.

13 get life for murder

A Barisal court on Sunday awarded life term imprisonment to 13 people for murder. The court also fined each convict Tk25, 000, in default, to suffer more two years RI and acquitted six people of charges. The convicts are Idris, Faruk, Alauddin, Rashid, Jalil, Giasuddin Howladar, Hossain Matubbar, Zakir, Md Ali Matubbar, Harun, Siddik,Azahar and Mozahar Howladar. According to the prosecution story one Motaleb Bhuiyan was beaten to death on October 1, 2004 in Kutubpur village under Muladi upazila over land dispute. Brother of the victim lodged a murder case and the investigation officer submitted charge sheet against 19 accused on December 30, 2004.

International

Smart Internet users defy China's censors on riot

Independent information about deadly riots in China's remote northwest filtered out on Twitter, YouTube and other Internet forums yesterday, frustrating government efforts to control the news.

Witnesses describe Xinjiang violence

Witnesses to the deadly unrest in the capital of China's Xinjiang region told yesterday how the peaceful protest turned into an orgy of violence that left at least 140 dead.

24 Taliban killed in Pak tribal belt fighting

At least 24 suspected Taliban fighters have been killed in Pakistan's northwest, security officials said yesterday, with battles erupting in Swat valley and the lawless tribal belt.

Taliban aim guns at US troops

Afghanistan's insurgent Taliban movement said Monday they had launched a guerrilla operation to thwart a major assault by newly deployed US Marines on their Helmand strongholds.

Pak Army more worried about threats from militants than India: Zardari

Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari, who has the backing of top military commanders for his goodwill gestures towards India, has said that the army is united in dealing with the threat emanating from militants and are no more worried about the Indian threat.

Army blocks Zelaya from landing in Honduras

Already volatile Honduras slid toward greater instability after soldiers blocked an airport runway to keep ousted President Manuel Zelaya from returning, and protests that had remained largely peaceful yielded their first death.

France, Britain agree to stem the flow of migrants

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown joins French President Nicolas Sarkozy in this Alpine town Monday to prepare for the G8 and agree on new efforts to stem the flow of migrants.

'Tropical zone expanding due to climate change'

Climate change is rapidly expanding the size of the world's tropical zone, threatening to bring disease and drought to heavily populated areas, an Australian study has found.

Pak SC rejects petitions against Hafiz Saeed's release

The Pakistan Supreme Court yesterday rejected on technical grounds two petitions by the federal and Punjab governments challenging release of JuD chief Hafiz Mohd Saeed, a key accused in the Mumbai attacks, from house arrest, prompting authorities to announce they will file fresh pleas after removing the flaws.

Israel drops Indian jets venture under US pressure

Israel has dropped out of a multi-billion dollar joint venture with a Swedish firm to develop new fighter jets for India because of US pressure, a newspaper reported yesterday.

Pakistan yet to respond to BSF protest after 'rocket' attack

Amidst security concerns in Punjab's border belt following Saturday night's 'rocket' attack on Indian territory from the Pakistani side, the Border Security Force (BSF) is awaiting a response from Pakistan Rangers regarding the incident.

India offers $100m for Lankan Tamils

India on Monday offered 100 million dollars for the tens of thousands of Tamil civilians dis-placed by conflict in Sri Lanka.

US won't stand in Israel's way on Iran: Biden

US Vice President Joe Biden said in a television interview that the United States would not stand in the way of Israel in its dealings with Iran's nuclear ambitions.

Obama's diplomacy being tested in Russia

President Barack Obama opened his first Moscow summit with confidence on Monday, predicting "extraordinary progress" out of meetings set to test his diplomatic skills on important priorities such as nuclear arsenal reductions and the fight in Afghanistan.

UN rights mission holds hearings on Gaza war

A UN human rights mission investigating alleged violations committed during the war in the Gaza Strip at the turn of the year resumed its public hearings here yesterday.

N Korea spent $700m on nuclear, missile tests

Impoverished North Korea has spent an estimated 700 million dollars this year on nuclear and missile tests, enough to solve its food shortage for at least two years, South Korean news reports said Monday.

Jackson's memorial service today

The details of Michael Jackson's 2002 will are to be examined in a Los Angeles court-room here Monday as authorities ramp up preparations for the music superstar's memorial service.

'Jackson was dating his kids' nanny'

Pop legend Michael Jackson was secretly dating his children's nanny before his death, says the singer's personal photographer.

Ten dead in Indian factory explosion

Indian police were investigating Monday a powerful blast at an explosives factory that killed at least 10 people in the central state of Madhya Pradesh.

Arts & Entertainment

Loko Natyadal celebrates 28th anniversary

Theatre Troupe Loko Natyadal (Banani) celebrated its 28th anniversary with staging two of its popular productions, "Kanjush" and "Shonai Madhab." "Kanjush" was staged at the Mahila Samiti Auditorium on July 5. "Shonai Madhab," which touched the landmark of 100th show, was staged at the Experimental Theatre Hall of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy on July 6.

Sheuli Bhattacharjee: The violinist with panache

Music runs in Sheuli Bhattarcharji's blood. On the completion of her music studies in India last year, the talented violinist is once more making waves in Bangladesh with her participation in stage programmes, TV shows, as a teacher, studio worker and enlisted artiste of Bangladesh Betar. Says a smiling Sheuli, “It feels great to receive audience recognition.”

Bahirana Audio Visual makes its debut with the launch of Nayak

With an aim to promote traditional cultural practices, a new audio-visual company 'Bahirana' made its debut on July 5. The launching ceremony was held at the Poet Sufia Kamal Auditorium, National Museum. The programme also included launching of the band Leela's debut album "Nayak." Eminent personalities including singers, critics and cultural activists attended the event.

Tribute to Tagore, Nazrul by Sruti

Cultural organisation 'Sruti' organised a programme as a tribute to Tagore and Nazrul at the M Saifur Rahman Auditorium in Sylhet city on Saturday.

Munier Chowdhury’s Mukhora Ramani Bashikaran staged

"Mukhora Ramani Bashikaran" an adaptation of William Shakespeare's "The Taming of the Shrew" was staged at the Town Hall, Habiganj recently, according to a press release.

Boishaki Natya Gosthi stages Achar

Faridpur Boishaki Natya Gosthi staged a play, titled "Achar" at Kobi Jasimuddin Hall in the town recently. Written by Kazi Shahidul Islam, the play was directed by Al Hamim.

Drama serial Shorolikoron on Desh TV tonight

Drama serial "Shorolikoron" will be aired on Desh TV tonight at 9:30 pm.

Baksho on ATN Bangla tonight

Drama serials "Baksho" will be aired tonight on ATN Bangla at 8pm. The serial, “Baksho,” is written by Mahiuddin Ahmed and directed by Dipankar Dipon.

Poet Abdul Latif Bhuiyan remembered

Faridpur Sahittaya Parishad (FSP) held a memorial meeting following the fourth death anniversary of poet Abdul Latif Bhuiyan at FSP premises on July 4.

OP-ED

Dispel the disparity

THE 7th pay commission for government employees recommended Tk.45,000, 37,700, 32,600, 28,850, 26,230, 20,800, 16,900, 13,750, 12500, 9,300, 7,000, 6,400, 6,000, 5,600, 5,300, 5,000, 4,700, 4,400, 4,200 and 4,000 for the grades 1 to 20, respectively. There is an imbalance between the higher and the lower scales, in the number of grades in different statistical classes or ranges, and many other disparities -- like the previous pay scales including the last one activated in 2005. Even, the current commission suggested more discrepancies as clarified below:

Iranian elections and the West

THE Iranian presidential election took place on June 12, and the next day the incumbent, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, was declared the winner. This led to protests, as Mir Hosein Mousavi and his supporters challenged the outcome of the election. The US and many countries in the West also made official statements about "irregularities" in the election.

12 reasons kindergarten teachers should rule the world

THERE are four major zones of violent civil unrest on this planet: Afghanistan, Iraq, the Gaza Strip, and my local international kindergarten. The last of these is by far the most frightening, as you can see in the looks of terror in the eyes of adults who have to enter.


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