The Daily Star

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Friday, March 22, 2019

News of: Wednesday, 8th of July, 2009

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Front Page

Magic art of turning Tk 43 into Tk 1,200

The company had been incurring losses for four consecutive years till 2007, producing aluminium panels.

Adieu, King of Pop

A glittering gold-plated casket carried Michael Jackson on his final journey yesterday as a worldwide audience in the hundreds of millions paid an emotional farewell to the tragic King of Pop.

JS swipes at TIB

Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) came under fire in the House yesterday for its report titled 'Parliament Watch 2009' that says Tk 5.41 crore got wasted due to quorum crisis in the inaugural session of the ninth parliament.

RPO breached to recast JCD

BNP has announced the new central committee of 'its student wing' Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) and party chief Khaleda Zia approved five office bearers in violation of political parties' registration laws.

Govt's Tipaimukh handling slated

Environmentalists and academics yesterday called for a greater movement at national and international levels to resist what they said 'India's conspiracy' to construct Tipaimukh dam without sharing information with Bangladesh.

Filling stations run with fire risk

Most of the filling stations in the city lack adequate fire safety measures while the government is relaxed about forcing the stations follow safety rules.

Carjackers tie with used-car dealers

A good number of used-car dealers in the capital are involved in trading stolen cars, Deputy Commissioner (south) of the Detective Branch of Police revealed yesterday.

JS asked to strengthen HR Commission

A parliamentary body yesterday recommended that the House empower the National Human Rights Commission to look into allegations against disciplined forces including the military.

Free banks from loan defaults

A parliamentary body has asked the finance ministry to initiate formation of asset management companies to free the banking system of the huge amount of existing defaulted loans.

Aminul sent to jail on surrender

Barrister Aminul Haque, one of the powerful ministers of the four-party government, was finally sent to jail yesterday in connection with a graft case in which he was earlier jailed for 10 years in absentia.

Engr shot dead after abduction

Criminals gunned down a diploma engineer of the Urban Development Directorate in the city's Mirpur area yesterday after abduction.

TIB shows how quorum crisis hits JS

Delay of 1,548 minutes in starting Jatiya Sangsad sittings on 39 working days of the first session of the ninth parliament caused the wastage of Tk 5.41 crore to parliament, Transparency International Bangladesh officials said yesterday.

JCD men protest expulsion

Tying shrouds on their heads, aggrieved leaders and activists of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal staged demonstrations on the Dhaka University campus yesterday to protest the expulsion of four leaders from JCD's university unit.

JMB offshoot leader Selim arrested

A joint team of Rab and BDR yesterday arrested Selim alias Saifullah, second-in-command and military affairs commander of JMB's new offshoot Islam O Muslim, at Belpara in Chapainawabganj.


Pan Asia Power Services Ltd has contradicted with a number of points mentioned in a news item published in The Daily Star on July 5 headlined "Tk 12cr wind power project at risk" saying that the project was running well.

Sohel Taj returns?

State Minister for Home Tanjim Ahmad Sohel Taj was scheduled to return from the US yesterday on expiry of leave for a month, but home ministry officials could not say anything about his return.

Gen Moeen quits BOA presidency

Former army chief general Moeen U Ahmed has resigned as the president of Bangladesh Olympic Association (BOA) on Monday.

Armed Han Chinese march in Urumqi

Police fired tear gas yesterday to try to restore order as hundreds of Han Chinese armed with clubs marched through the Xinjiang capital of Urumqi, smashing shops and knocking over food stalls run by Muslims.

Obama strikes chord with Russian youth

It seemed to be change they could believe in: Students at this Russian university burst into applause yesterday when the US presidential seal was hung on the podium before Barack Obama's speech.

US missiles hit Mehsud's hideouts: 16 killed

A US missile strike pulverised a compound in a stronghold of Pakistani Taliban warlord Baitullah Mehsud yesterday, killing 16 foreign and local militants, security officials said.

ADB moves afresh for sub-regional connectivity

Asian Development Bank has undertaken a fresh initiative in their ongoing efforts to promote South Asia Sub-regional Economic Cooperation in the region.

Sarkozy wants 'truth' on massacre of French monks

President Nicolas Sarkozy said yesterday he was determined to find out who was really behind the 1996 abduction and beheading of seven French monks in Algeria.


Wealth statement from ministers, MPs

Finance Minister AMA Muhith has categorically stated that the government will start taking wealth statements from ministers and lawmakers beginning next month. By making this clear, he has basically conveyed a highly welcome piece of news to the public. For, it signals a much-awaited response to a long-felt need. It fills the void of a fundamental in the perceived accountability structure at the apex of the pyramid.

Felling of trees in Sitakunda coastal belt

The stay order served by the Supreme Court in the matter of the recent razing of trees along the coastal belt in Sitakunda stresses once more the need for firm action against those who seek to destroy the country's ecology. Indeed, when a group of influential people cut down as many as 15,000 trees across a 40-acre forest belt in Sitakunda in the last few days in order to build ship-breaking yards there, it became absolutely clear that the environment is still at risk from predatory elements. More significantly, when the emphasis in recent years has been on an expansion of afforestation along the sea belt owing to the frequency of natural disasters, the destruction of the trees is a clear affront to those, both in government and civil society, who have been involved in trying to make the coastal regions safer for those inhabiting it.

Reshuffle, not expand, the cabinet

WE might be going through an expansion of the cabinet one of these days. We are not sure we are going to appreciate that. The reason is pretty simple: this country has generally had outsize cabinets, quite at variance with its geographical and administrative dimensions; and the one we have at this point is not much different from its predecessors.

The world must act

IN the past, there was a joke in the UN corridors: a person who deliberately kills another gets either life imprisonment or death sentence; a person who kills twenty is sent to mental hospital, but a person who kills tens of thousands of people goes to Geneva for peace talks.


Windies take in teenager

Teenager Adrian Barath, the promising Trinidad and Tobago batsman from whom much is expected, has been called up to the West Indies squad for the first Test against Bangladesh along with Ravi Rampaul, who impressed in the ODIs against India.

Herath does a magic

Rangana Herath skittled Pakistan with his left-arm spin to hand Sri Lanka a dramatic, 50-run victory in the first Test here on Tuesday.

It's Ashes time again

Australia's selectors will need to be almost as quick as a Brett Lee yorker after the fast bowler was ruled out of the first Ashes Test less than 48 hours before play is due to start here on Wednesday.

Six apply for B. League slot

Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) are all set to increase the participating teams in the 3rd B. League and already got response from six clubs.

Cobb sends U-19s packing

Joshua Cobb slammed a double hundred as England Under-19s put visiting Bangladesh Under-19s under a pile of runs in the first four-dayer at North Marine Road ground in Scarborough yesterday.

Bond back for SL tour

Star fast bowler Shane Bond has returned to the New Zealand one-day squad for their tour to Sri Lanka starting next month.

Strauss has faith in his troops

England captain Andrew Strauss goes into Wednesday's first Test here against Australia confident his developing side have the character required to cope with the pressure of Ashes cricket.

South Asian shooting

Four events were settled on the third day in the 5th South Asian Shooting Championship and India won all the gold medals to maintain their complete supremacy at the BKSP shooting range yesterday.

NZ to host Pakistan

New Zealand will host Pakistan for a three-Test series from late November after the Black Caps cancelled their tour to the troubled country over security fears.

80,000 fans welcome C'Ron

Cristiano Ronaldo said on Monday he had fulfilled a "childhood dream" as he was officially unveiled as a Real Madrid player before a record-setting capacity crowd of nearly 80,000 people at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium.

'Not a one-man band'

Cristiano Ronaldo has talked down suggestions he will single-handedly lead Real Madrid to European glory next season.

Fans jeer Milan

AC Milan began pre-season training at their Milanello base just outside the city on Monday with jeers rather than cheers ringing in their ears.

Carvalho wants out

Portugal centre-back Ricardo Carvalho has reiterated his desire to leave Chelsea in an interview published in Tuesday's Corriere dello Sport.

Blues seal Zhirkov deal

Chelsea have completed the signing of Russian international Yuri Zhirkov from CSKA Moscow for a reported £18m fee.

Milan spring Onyewu surprise

AC Milan sprung a transfer surprise on Monday, although not one likely to appease disgruntled fans, by signing United States defender Oguchi Onyewu from Standard Liege.

Bayern to sell Ribery for 80m euros

Bayern Munich have set a price tag of 80 million euros on French midfielder Franck Ribery, tabloid daily Bild reported on Tuesday.

Benayoun extends with Reds

Liverpool's Israeli midfielder Yossi Benayoun on Monday signed a new two-year extension to his contract which will keep him at the club until 2013.

Pele calls for salary caps

Pele has urged Fifa to introduce a salary cap for players and warned that the vast sums of money changing hands in the game could taint its image for future generations.

Six Ashes moments

The Ashes have produced many notable moments since their inception more than a century ago.

Ricky urges rookies to rise

Australia captain Ricky Ponting wants his inexperienced pace attack to make their mark in Ashes history after fast bowler Brett Lee was ruled out of the first Test against England.

England can win even if I fail, says Pietersen

Kevin Pietersen says England can regain the Ashes even if he has a lean series.

National Chess

GM Ziaur Rahman maintained his all-win record when he won the eighth round board against Jamal Uddin in the Mercantile Bank 35th National Chess Championship at the federation hall-room yesterday.

Asian jr chess

FM Minhazuddin Ahmed Sagar finished 17th in the Continental Asian Junior Chess Championship in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

Mendis signs for Aussie T20

Sri Lankan spin sensation Ajantha Mendis has signed for the South Australia Redbacks in this season's domestic Twenty20 competition, officials said Tuesday.


Local firm gears up to grab US nursing jobs

A local healthcare professional recruiting firm has set a target to grab at least 10 percent market share of nurses in the US in the next 10 years.

Safta losing lustre, say analysts

Growing attention to bilateral free trade agreements (FTAs) among Saarc-member states may dampen prospects for a faster realisation of Safta, observed trade analysts yesterday.

Govt plans to turn Chittagong, Mongla into regional hubs

Commerce Minister Faruk Khan has said the government wants to see Chittagong and Mongla ports graduating to regional ones, promoting trade and cooperation among nations.

India trades growth with higher fiscal deficit

With the objective of taking Indian economy on a high growth trajectory in the midst of worldwide recession, the budget for 2009-10 presented in parliament on Monday has traded growth with higher fiscal deficit, analysts said here yesterday.

4 lakh PSTN users to lose links to mobile networks

Over four lakh private landline customers will be disconnected today from mobile phone networks, as six mobile operators have decided not to carry calls generated from and to PSTN operators because of a delay in payment of arrears by the PSTN operators to cellphone companies.

RMC makers seek VAT withdrawal

Ready mix concrete (RMC) makers have urged the government to exempt RMC from paying value added tax (VAT), saying the industry is still at a 'nascent stage' and the VAT will hinder its growth.

Govt promises to boost handloom sector

The government will take measures to revive the handloom industry to generate employment for women and the rural population, said the textiles and jute minister yesterday.

Govt moves to reopen two silk factories under PPP

The government has taken initiatives to reopen two silk factoriesone in Rajshahi and the other in Thakurgaon under public-private partnership (PPP) by January next.

Tk 150cr Citi syndicated loan for farm sector

Citibank NA Bangladesh has arranged a syndicated loan amounting to Tk 150 crore for the agricultural sector, first-ever in the country.

ACI Logistics sets up own supply network

ACI Logistics Limited has moved to develop its own supply chain network across the country, aiming to sell products at lower prices in their retail outlets.

EU to boost crisis-hit banks

European finance ministers agreed Tuesday to make it easier for banks to create strong financial cushions so they can better deal with future crises, amid mounting concern about rising credit losses.

Wall Street lower

Wall Street opened lower Tuesday as investors mulled prospects ahead of the second quarter earnings season and the possibility of added government stimulus to jolt the economy from recession.

SMS alerts for natural calamities

Sorry debates follow every natural calamity over how early warning could have reduced the intensity of a damage caused. Sometimes, it is a matter of irony that weather forecasts a sunny warm day, while in reality it rains cats and dogs.

World leaders gather in Italy for key G8

The world's most powerful leaders gathered in Italy Tuesday on the eve of a G8 summit aimed at finding common ground on how to tackle the global economic crisis, climate change and turmoil in Iran.

CSE to bifurcate insurance sector into two

The Chittagong Stock Exchange (CSE) has decided to bifurcate the insurance sector into two sectors, namely general insurance and life insurance, to provide more relevant and accurate information to investors and users of the market, according to a statement.

UBS loses top wealth manager spot to BoA

Swiss banking giant UBS has lost its top spot as the world's biggest wealth manager to the Bank of America, research firm Scorpio Partnership said Tuesday.

German industrial orders gain 4.4pc

German industrial orders climbed by 4.4 percent in May from the previous month, official data showed Tuesday, pursuing a rise begun in March as the economy ministry saw prospects for stabilised output.

AB Bank teams up with BURO Bangladesh

AB Bank Ltd has signed a remittance service agreement with BURO Bangladesh, an organisation specialised in micro-finance, according to a statement.

Boeing to acquire 787 supplier Vought

Boeing said Tuesday it would acquire the business and operations conducted by Vought Aircraft Industries at its South Carolina facility.

Asian markets mixed

Asian markets struggled for direction Tuesday as investors stayed on the sidelines ahead of upcoming US earnings results, after lingering pessimism led to mixed signals on Wall Street.

Dollar on mixed footing

The dollar rose Tuesday against the euro but fell against the yen amid jitters over the global economy and this week's summit of the Group of Eight economic powers, analysts said.

Oil rises

Oil prices recovered slightly on Tuesday after sliding a day earlier on concerns about energy demand amid a stumbling US economy.

Lear files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection

Struggling automotive parts supplier Lear Corp said it has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after receiving the support it needed from lenders and bondholders.

Borrowers must be protected from ignorance: OECD

Most consumers have little understanding of basic financial concepts and must be given increased protection and guidance when they take out loans, the OECD said on Tuesday.

US may need a second stimulus, says Obama adviser

The United States may need a second stimulus package focusing on infrastructure projects to put the world's biggest economy firmly on the path to recovery, a top White House adviser said here Tuesday.

Chinese growth would pull up Africa: AfDB chief

African Development Bank chief Donald Kaberuka on Tuesday said he was "confident" that if China's economy were to return to double-digit growth, it would lift African growth to pre-crisis levels.


Form industrial police to protect RMG sector

Institution of Textile Engineers and Technologists (ITET) at a seminar yesterday demanded setting up of an industrial police besides ensuring due facilities to the garment workers without any delay to protect the country's readymade garment (RMG) industry.

EC starts examining returns of election expenditures

The Election Commission has started examining the returns of election expenditures submitted by both the candidates and the political parties who contested the ninth parliamentary elections held in December last year, and it would move for legal action against anyone who submitted false information.

HC verdict today

The High Court (HC) will deliver verdict today on the writ petition seeking to protect and maintain historic places related to the War of Liberation.

Banned notebooks flood markets

Sale of illegal guidebooks and notebooks for primary and secondary level students has continued unabated, although the government banned printing, import, sale and distribution of such books in April 1980.

JS passes bill changing terms of conviction

The Jatiya Sangsad yesterday passed a bill changing a provision for dismissal of government employees.

Extortionists shoot sand trader

Extortionists shot a sand trader at Rampura while a gang of robbers looted Tk 40,000 and gold from a garment factory at Khilgaon in the city yesterday.

13 killed in road accidents

Thirteen people were killed and nine others injured in separate road accidents in Gazipur, Rangpur, Dinajpur, Rajshahi Lalmonirhat and Mymensingh in the last two days.

Implement CRC recommendations

Several organisations working on child rights yesterday urged the government to implement all recommendations of the report of Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC), a body of independent experts that monitors implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Dhaka-Ctg two-track rail line to get priority

To ensure easy and speedy communications between Dhaka and Chittagong, the existing single-track rail line between the two cities would be turned into a two-track line on priority basis.

BCL leaders to help new JCD leaders

Top leaders of Bangladesh Chhatra League have allegedly reached a secret understanding with the new leadership of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal that the BCL will help defuse the ongoing protest by a faction of JCD on the Dhaka University campus against its 'aged central committee'.

Khaleda's bail extended for six months

The High Court (HC) yesterday extended for six months its earlier order granting bail to BNP Chairperson and Leader of the Opposition in Parliament Khaleda Zia in the "Zia Orphanage Trust" fund embezzlement case filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

Army Hqs Selection Board meets

The first phase meeting of Army Headquarters Selection Board-2009 was held at the Army Headquarters Conference Room yesterday, says an ISPR release.

HC asks KCC to obtain EIA report

The High Court (HC) yesterday asked the Khulna City Corporation (KCC) authorities to obtain the environmental impact assessment (EIA) report from the Department of Environment before implementation of the Phultala Water Supply Project.

Siamese twins die

The Siamese twins born with unusual congenital defects died baffling the pediatric surgeons' efforts at Chittagong Medical College Hospital (CMCH) yesterday.

3 bodies found floating in Jamuna

Three unidentified bodies have been floating in the river Jamuna at Atarer Para under Pakulla union of Sonatola upazila in Bogra.

Celebrating Life Festival in Khulna July 20-25

Celebrating Life Festival, jointly organised by The Daily Star and Standard Chartered Bank, will be held in Khulna from July 20 to 25.

Body formed to probe death of patient

A probe body was formed yesterday to investigate the cause of death of a patient, who died due to alleged negligence on the part of a doctor at Narayanganj 200-bed Hospital at Khanpur in the town on Monday.

Acknowledge real history

The Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) leaders yesterday urged the critics of the High Court (HC) judgment regarding proclamation of the country's independence to acknowledge the real history of the nation by accepting the HC verdict.

Nahid visits dilapidated primary school

Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid visited Prasanna Poddar Government Primary School at Tantibazar in Old Dhaka yesterday where seven students got injured when a chunk of roof-plaster fell down on them inside a classroom on Monday.

GoCooh launches info portal site

Japan-based GoCooh Corporation announced the release of the Bangladesh Information Portal Site, Beta Version' ( yesterday, says a press release.

550 bottles of Phensidyl seized

Police seized 550 bottles of Phensidyl in separate raids and arrested three drug peddlers in these connections in Gazipur yesterday.

Govt mulls shifting of secretariat

The government is actively considering shifting the secretariat to Sher-e-Bangla Nagar, State Minister for Housing and Public Works Abdul Mannan Khan told parliament yesterday.

Women with disabilities worst sufferers of discrimination

Speakers at a view exchange meeting yesterday said though the women rights movement has a very positive impact on women empowerment in South Asian region, it makes less impact on the physically challenged women who are still lagging behind.

Canadian parliamentary secy due today

Canadian Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs Deepak Obhrai arrives here today on a four-day visit to Bangladesh.

Monira Rahman wins Americans for UNFPA Int'l Award

United Nations Population Fund yesterday formally announced that Executive Director of Acid Survivors Foundation (ASF) Monira Rahman has won the Americans for UNFPA International Award for her role in preventing violence against women, specifically acid violence.

Trader stabbed to death, 20 injured at Bhairab

Highwaymen stabbed a bus passenger to death and injured 20 others while robbing the passengers of around Tk 30 lakh in the bus at Bhairab on Dhaka-Sylhet highway early yesterday.


Truck drivers forced to bribe for tickets at ferry terminals

A section of Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation (BIWTC) officials, traffic policemen and middlemen are forcing truck drivers to give bribe to get their way to the ferry terminal as 'artificial' traffic jam is created at Paturia and Daulatdia.

Downpour floods many Chittagong city areas

Many parts of the port city including the low-lying areas were submerged due to daylong torrential rain yesterday causing untold sufferings to the townsfolk.

Massive erosion threatens 5 villages in Sirajganj

At least 60 metres of earthen structure in spar - 2 area on the western bank of the Jamuna at Meghai point under Kazipur upazila collapsed on Monday, threatening massive erosion in the downstream areas of the spar.

BCL ransacks college rooms, injures 10 students

Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) cadres yesterday ransacked Barguna Government College office rooms and injured at least 10 general students.

JCD men assault teacher for refusing undue admission

Students of MC College yesterday blocked Sylhet-Tamabil road in front of the college for about two hours in protest against assaulting a teacher by a group of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) men.

Jamaat files counter case

A local Jamaat leader filed a counter case with Chief Judicial Magistrate's Court here yesterday accusing 15 people, including seven cops of Satkhira Sadar Police Station and eight BCL men, of ransacking the district Jamaat office on July 5.

3 teenage girls rescued

Police in a raid on Monday night rescued three teenage girls from Jessore central bus stand and arrested two traffickers. The girls are Halima, 17, daughter of Jalil Bepari of Chanmari village in the district, Rumki, 17, daughter of Boshir Hawlader of Palashpur village in Barisal and Munni, 16, daughter of Jinnah Mollah of Ramkantohor village in Narail. The arrested 'traffickers' are Salina, wife of Alif Hossain of Muroli in Jessore and Dherajuddin of Nagarkanda village in Faridpur. Police said, the young girls were brought to Jessore for trafficking by promising them suitable jobs in a neighbouring country.

BCL beats up JCD leader

The activists of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) at Islamic University (IU) yesterday beat up Sariful Islam Sumon, president of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) Bangbandhu Sheikh Mujib Hall unit on IU campus. The BCL cadres swooped on Sumon at main gate of the university at about 1.00: pm and beat him up with iron rod and bamboo sticks, witnesses said. The attackers alleged that Sumon led several attacks on BCL on the campus during the last BNP tenure. BCL activists faced at least 12 attacks by JCD men that left at least 100 injured, they said.

3 arrested, arms recovered

Police yesterday arrested three alleged arms traders and recovered a foreign made pistol and bullets from their possession at Mathurapur in Daulatpur upazila in the district. A team from Mathurapur police camp arrested Liton, 20, son of Yasin Ali of Pakuria from Mathurapur bazar last night and recovered a pistol from his possession. Later, on his disclosure, police arrested two accomplices from the bazar areas and recovered five bullets from them. The arrestees are Tufan, 24, son of Asgar Ali and Nantu, 25, son of Ibrahim of Ramkrishnapur in Daulatpur upazila. Police said Liton was an arms trader involved in arms smuggling in border areas.

Pirated CDs recovered

A mobile court on Monday seized a huge number of pirated CDs and pornographic films from video shops and arrested one person in the town. During raid on shops at Haque Super Market they recovered over 500 pieces of CDs from Mouchak Video and Movie Video. The arrested person is the owner of Mouchak Video.

English medium schools

Rajshahi City Corporation (RCC) has decided to set up two English medium schools in the city. The schools will be set up on RCC land near Hatimkhan and Bornali intersections within a few months, said RCC officials. “We have taken up the initiatives so that our future generation becomes good at English besides the mother tongue,” said Rajshahi Mayor AHM Khairuzzaman Liton. Meanwhile, the RCC also has decided to run two private colleges and three private schools of the city from this fiscal.


Disaster management

Bangladesh is a disaster prone country and has been suffering long with effects of various forms of natural disasters like, tornado, cyclone, frequent seasonal floods, tidal surges, earth sliding, earth quakes and incessant rains. The destruction and damage, economic, social and life losses resulting from these natural disasters are so big that these always hinder our economic growth and development and in many cases we have to depend on foreign aid support to survive.

Biodiversity and our existence

It has been estimated that more than 50 million species of plants, animals and micro-organisms exist in the world. Out of these, about two million organisms have been identified so far. Our planet's requirement and services depend mainly on biological resources. Human society depends on biological resources, their diversity and the ecosystem that sustain them. Biological resources not only provide us nourishment, clothing, housing, fuel and medicine but also meet other requirements.

Bus tickets

In Dhaka city many bus companies maintain ticket counters from where people have to get on buses after buying tickets first. But many ticket sellers adopt a different way for their personal benefits. When a bus comes, people are in a hurry to enter into it but on receiving the money the seller instruct one or some passengers to board the bus without ticket. As the conductors and drivers get a portion of the non-issued tickets' money, the passengers generally do not face any problem in boarding the bus. I think some checkers are also involved in this act. If anyone insists on getting the ticket, the seller issues it angrily. The sellers do not do this illegal act for all passengers but they earn something in this way from around 10% of the passengers. It is my estimation.

New timing

The letter by Rumi Ahmed "Torturous timing" is a very timely one.

Digital Bangladesh

Digital society focuses on technology where information must be available to all classes of people. It is obviously forward thinking, especially for a poverty ridden and developing country like Bangladesh. Each and every sector of a society should be interconnected through ICT. Connecting people and ensuring Good Governance is a core prerequisite for a digital Bangladesh. Good governance includes different indicators like accountability of the government, transparency of the government, effective parliament, effective democratic system, freedom of print and mass media, independence of judiciary, rule of law, and access to information etc. Effective implementation of the above indicators can be possible when society gets adaptation with ICT. Information should be exposed to mass people that can ensure true communication. Connecting people depends on access to information.

Country's security

Every state has its own foreign policies. And many of them may not sound decent, but that's the way it is, completely unfathomable. Of course it's not all about high government officials showing their ever-smiling faces in various summits and bilateral rendezvous. This never ever does not bring an end to the story, nor does it resemble the innumerable conspiracies and the vicious abhorrence for one another. But it's just a formality to save your skin in front of the world. So deep down, it's the intricate manifestation of national security that matters the most. A country helped the Tamil Tigers in Sri Lanka, named LTTE, by providing them with sophisticated and advanced machineries to consolidate their roots and give the Sri Lankans a debilitating battle to fight. For decades now, it has also been facilitating the 'Shanti Bahini', which tended to give our Bangladesh Army a pulsating headache all the way in the Chittagong Hill Tracts.


George Bernard Shaw said “Patriotism is the conviction that your country is better than others because you were born in it.” There have been many such writers, political activists such as Leo Tolstoy, Emma Goldman who have described patriotism as too narrow a concept to meet the necessities and ideologies of the working men and women of the world who believe in harmony. In one of her speeches Emma Goldman said patriotism justifies the killing of innocent human beings. Do we all define patriotism as the right to kill in the name of one's country? The more important question is SHOULD we consider patriotism as the act of looking down upon all the other nations and overlooking the faults, atrocities committed by our own nation? Let's not define patriotism in a way which allows politicians, influential people to manipulate us into considering the slaughter of harmless human beings as a noble cause.

KSA woman minister

Appointment of a woman minister by the Saudi King is a bold step towards ensuring women's development in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). But it is most unfortunate that a certain quarter has been spreading some propaganda stating that the first ever appointed minister in the Kingdom is under some restrictions to discharging her duties smoothly. But Ms. Norah Binte Abdullah al-Fayez, deputy education minister for female education affairs, KSA vide a recent statement told that she is under no restrictions to perform her job as a minister.

Tale of a child worker

A few days ago I visited Bandarban, one of the lands of natural beauty, accompanied by some of my friends. We hired a four wheeler jeep to enjoy the tour smoothly. Surprisingly, I met a child who was the helper/conductor of that jeep which climbs a number of hiils every day. Undoubtedly, it was a risky job, but the boy performed spontaneously. When we reached the peak of a hill named Neelgiri, 2400 feet above the sea level, I realized the pathetic condition of that child. I called him “Pioneer” because he made me know about many attractive places and hills on the way to Neelgiri. I couldn't resist my temptation to talk to him alone to know about his short but experienced life of sorrow and deep depression. I came to know that he grew up in a tribal family in Bandarban. His father was a jeep driver. His mother was often brutally beaten by his drunken father. He had nothing to do but cry himself. Once his mother was beaten brutally and divorced by his drunken father.

Iranian democrats

Reuel Marc Gerecht, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defence of Democracies and an expert on the Middle East, recently wrote in International Herald Tribune: "As Iranians have come to know theocracy intimately, secularism has become increasingly attractive. Iran now produces brilliant clerics who argue in favour of the separation of church and state as a means of saving the faith from corrupting power."

Too soft!

Even though I do not support any political party, I support 110% the views expressed by the BNP parliamentary party regarding the interference of the Indian High Commissioner in our internal affairs. Questioning our water experts in our own country is uncalled for, unacceptable and demands a harsh response. The utterances of our foreign minister are equally deplorable.

Drivers or killers?

I fully share the views expressed by Mr. Rahat in your column on 22nd June on the subject. It is very unfortunate to see that the on duty traffic policemen are oblivious of the countless traffic violations that are being committed by the bus drivers of Dhaka city particularly of some specific brands which have the most dented and dilapidated look of their so called public transport. Because of heavy build and very shabby look of their vehicles they could not care less in damaging other vehicles ignoring all norms of traffic rules. Not only the drivers are unruly their assistants are equally if not more unruly as they scream and shout at the small private cars for space at the miseries/panic of private car owners. The rule that says the slower vehicle should move on the left lane and all overtaking be done from right seems to be forgotten all the time. Similarly, taking a right turn from left lanes has become a standard rule in this country. I wonder if the traffic police do know about these rules or if these rules have been written off from the book. I am pretty sure these route permit holders along with their accomplice drivers have an unholy alliance with the on duty traffic policemen who overlook all such violations in favour of personal gains.

Ghoulish crimes

Home Minister Sahara Khatun has claimed that criminal activities have come down considerably. But alas, we see no sign of it. From reports of the media we learned about quite a number of daring crimes.

Energy saving

It is appreciable that the government has taken an initiative to have electrical energy by changing the clock time. Through this decision maximum utilization of daylight is possible in many built spaces like offices, shopping centres, schools, colleges etc. as these building-users use electricity approximately from 8:00am to 6:00pm

Karwan Bazar killings

This horrifying front page news in all national dailies on 27june, is a slap on the face of the government! It underlines the strength, ruthlessness and total disregard for law and order by the vicious "Chadabaz". It is a sore challenge to the government!


Just a month ago, in the Star magazine a sufferer wrote a letter about the ordeal she had to endure at the US embassy during her interview for seeking US immigrant visa. Not only that lady, rather these days the US embassy here in Dhaka is not issuing immigrant visa during the initial interview on most of the occasions. They are harassing the immigrant visa seekers by asking irrelevant questions and it has become a common phenomenon during the time of interview.


Kashmir unable to tackle insurgency alone

Indian Kashmir's chief minister warned yesterday against any large-scale pull-out of paramilitary forces, saying the police force alone could not cope with the Muslim insurgency in the region.

US Marines clearing out key Afghan insurgent centres

Nearly a week after launching one of the biggest operations in post-Taliban Afghanistan, about 4,000 US Marines are holding key insurgent centres and making it clear they intend to stay, the forces say.

Lashkar's Gulf based terror cells planning attack on India

The threat perception on vital installations in three coastal states Gujarat, Maharashtra and Goa has been increased manifold following intelligence reports of the banned Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) channelising huge amounts of money from its Gulf-based networks for terror strikes against the country.

Nepal's ex-king 'troubled' by state of nation

Nepal's former king Gyanendra said yesterday he is "troubled and anguished" by the state of his country, breaking a long silence after Maoists threatened to take to the streets.

Security, high tensions across Xinjiang

Residents in major cities across China's vast Xinjiang region reported a spike in security Tuesday and businesses closed over fears deadly unrest that erupted in the capital could spread.

Ulfa hit-squad enters Assam from Myanmar

The outlawed United Liberation Front of Asom (Ulfa) is planning to stage violent strikes in the run up to Independence Day, with a four-member hit squad sneaking into the state from bases in Myanmar, rebel leaders said yesterday.

Uighur leader wants Western probes into Xinjiang unrest

Exiled Uighur leader Rebiya Kadeer Monday called on the international community to probe the deadly violence that rocked China's Xinjiang region over the weekend, accusing Beijing of fudging the truth and playing down the death toll.

India closely monitoring Saeed case

External Affairs Minister SM Krishna has said that New Delhi is closely monitoring the case of Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) chief Hafeez Muhammad Saeed, the prime accused of the November 2008 Mumbai attacks.

Indonesians vote today to elect president

Indonesia votes Wednesday in only its second direct presidential election since the fall of the Suharto dictatorship, with incumbent Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono expected to win another five-year term.

US touts progress with Russia on Iran

Iran was the main topic in talks between US President Barack Obama and Russia's Dmitry Medvedev, White House officials said, who added that Moscow now seemed more receptive to US arguments.

Over 4 lakh displaced by Assam floods

Over 4 lakh people have been displaced in floods triggered by heavy rainfall in Assam.

Govt rented out military to US for $1.5b:Imran Khan

Cricketer-turned politician, Imran Khan has charged the PPP-led government of being subservient to the United States, saying that government has rented out the country's army to the US in exchange of 1.5 billion dollars.

US hints at talks on S Korean missiles

The United States is open to talks on the possibility of South Korea developing ballistic missiles capable of striking all of North Korea, a South Korean Defence Ministry official said yesterday.

6 killed in Philippines bomb attacks

At least six people were killed and more than 40 wounded by twin bomb blasts in the Philippines Tuesday, in what officials described as coordinated attacks by al-Qaeda-linked militants.

Asia says farewell to 'King of Pop'

Devoted fans of Michael Jackson across Asia said farewell to the "King of Pop" on Tuesday, singing his greatest hits, watching videos and gathering for a late-night viewing of the memorial in Los Angeles.

Iranian opposition calls for end to crackdown

Iran's top three reformist leaders called for an end to the heavy crackdown launched by the ruling clerics following the disputed June 12 presidential election and demanded the release of all those detained in the post-election turmoil, an opposition Web site reported yesterday.

'Absolutely no green light for Israel to strike Iran'

US President Barack Obama yesterday strongly denied that the United States had given Israel a green light to strike Iran's nuclear facilities, in an interview on CNN television.

ME peace process cannot handle more failure, warns Egypt

The Middle East peace process cannot handle another failure, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak warned on Tuesday, telling his Israeli counterpart his country would have to make "difficult decisions."

700-year-old skull washes up on beach

Baffled Australian police launched an appeal for information on Tuesday after a 700-year-old skull washed up on a beach.

Arts & Entertainment

The familiar face of Bangladesh

Rivers get polluted and dry up, traffic jams become even more intolerable, natural calamities continue to decimate localities but the frequent pure, wide smile on the face of a hungry street urchin never fades. And this is the familiar face of Bangladesh.

The all-encompassing spectrum of tunes

It was an early October day and I was passing by a busy London super market area, when a mellow tone of a flute struck my ears. I could not but stood mesmerised, till the hypnotic melody came to an end. I can't express the feeling in language as it can only be felt. I was dripped with a very nostalgic feeling. I looked around and found that two South American young musicians, not the 'Pied Piper of Hamelin', were playing on their indigenous flute. I approached them and asked if I could get a recording of this piece of music they just played. They gave me a CD and told me that I could find this piece titled 'By gone days' in it. I gave them ten pounds in return and was happy that this state of mind can be expressed in the language of music only. Such is the power of music! Music triumphs where language fails and this in particular, is the role of music in films. It has to express the particular mood of a sequence where dialogue of camera fails to reach.

Book fair, celebrating monsoon, in the city

A book fair, titled “Borshar Boimela 2009,” is currently on in the city, at the Concord Emporium Shopping Complex premises, Katabon.

Hyder Husyn concert for a noble cause

The Association of Mymensingh Ex-Cadets arranged a concert at the Cadet College Club, Gulshan recently to raise funds for a Mymensingh Cadet College student Farzana. Farzana has been suffering from cancer.

Sankar’s Jana Aranya translated into English

First it was “Chowringhee” and now “Jana Aranya.” The Penguin publisher must be thanked for bringing out the English translation of two immensely popular Bangla novels by Mani Sankar Mukherjee.

Stevie Wonder, Mariah Carey set for Jackson memorial

The Michael Jackson memorial service at the Staples Center on Tuesday was scheduled to be a star-studded affair, with singers Mariah Carey, Usher and Stevie Wonder among the participants, according to an announcement released on behalf of the Jackson family.

Ishkool on Ekushey TV tonight

Ekushey TV will air the entertainment-educational programme “Ishkool” tonight at 7:45 pm. The programme aims at generating awareness on the public education system in Bangladesh.

Vatican Radio starts carrying ads

Vatican Radio-- the voice of the Roman Catholic Church-- is starting to air advertisements for the first time in the station's nearly 80-year history.


Lawmakers must not be lawbreakers

RECENTLY, a headline of The Daily Star (June 20, 2009) read "MPs to make local development plans." According to the report, the government has decided to give MPs the power to prepare the development plans for their constituencies, which will be implemented by the ministry of LGRD. This decision, we are afraid, will once again be a blatant assault on our Constitution.

Front-line science and technology education

OF late, the dramatic decline in science studies has been vividly featured in the media. It is observed that enrolment in secondary and undergraduate science studies has decreased by approximately 30% and 45% respectively in the last eight years. One may claim that it is a global phenomenon, although it is particularly acute case in Bangladesh. If this trend continues, there may be serious consequences, which could result in the country's inclination to trade in technology rather than manufacture its own.

Things you should never say

YOUR humble narrator saw a parent performing the time-honoured ritual of losing it.

The Daily Star

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