The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Saturday, October 25, 2014


News of: Monday, 13th of July, 2009

Front Page

Move to pay shady RPC contractor Tk 300cr

The Rural Power Company (RPC) in August 2005 cancelled a plant operation and maintenance contract with Lahmayer International Pally Power Services (LIPPS) as it illegally shut down and "sabotaged" two 70-megawatt units of a Mymensingh plant.

KCC councillor gunned down

Unidentified criminals shot dead Shahid Iqbal Bithar, ward councillor of Khulna City Corporation and presidium member of Jubo League, near his residence at Musalmanpara in Khulna early yesterday.

Rules defied in sand lifting near Buriganga bank

A group of people have been extracting sand on a large scale from the bank and adjacent shallow river bed of the Buriganga at Basila although they have permission for extracting sand from the middle of the river.

BSF to be asked to stop killing

Bangladesh and India kicked off a border conference at the Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) headquarters yesterday morning, while two Bangladeshis were shot dead by Indian Border Security Force (BSF) at Chuadanga and Dinajpur frontiers.

Banks must report stock portfolios every month

The central bank has asked all banks to submit monthly reports on their stock portfolios, following unearthing of irregularities in share business by a Dhaka Stock Exchange investigation.

No let-up in grabbing Gulshan Lake

Influential encroachers still continue filling up parts of the Gulshan-Banani-Baridhara lake at different points as the government sits idle only to watch environmental disasters in near future.

Continue fight against graft

President Zillur Rahman yesterday called upon the Anti-Corruption Commission to continue its ongoing fight against corruption without making any compromise with a view to building a corruption-free society.

Tuku sues Moeen for defamation

Former BNP state minister Iqbal Hassan Mahmood Tuku yesterday sued recently retired army chief Moeen U Ahmed for defamation and Tk 100 crore in damages.

Minister blames WDB for damage of embankment

Communications Minister Syed Abul Hossain yesterday blamed the negligence of Water Development Board for the partial damage to Sirajganj town protection embankment by river erosion within 10 years of its construction.

BSF firings kill 2 more Bangladeshis

Indian Border Security Force yesterday killed two Bangladeshis--a farmer and a cattle trader-- on the borders of Dinajpur and Chuadanga.

Tamim ton gives Tigers lead

Tamim Iqbal scored his maiden century in the second innings of the first Test against West Indies at Kingstown giving Bangladesh a lead of 131 runs.

Bangladeshis among 100 workers left without pay

Over 100 workers including Bangladeshis, Indians and Nepalese have been stranded in their camp in Abu Dhabi for the last six months without any pay or work, reports the Abu Dhabi-based newspaper The National.

Construction of deep-sea port starts next year

The construction of a deep-sea port near Sonadia island in Cox's Bazar will start next year and the port is expected to come into operation by 2020.

DMP moves to curb extortion in transport sector

The Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) authorities have formed a 19-member committee to identity the criminals involved in extortion in the city's transport sector.

Trial not under military law, says Faruk

Commerce Minister Faruk Khan yesterday said the trial of BDR mutiny case will be held under conventional laws, not under the military law.

AL men takes control of employees' union office

Awami League activists stormed into the Mongla Port Employees' union office on Saturday night and took over its control by declaring a new convening committee of the union.

Extortionists shoot two scrap traders

A gang of criminals sprayed bullets indiscriminately in front of Hossain Market in the city's Badda area yesterday morning, leaving two scrap traders wounded.

Ex-MP Pintu denied bail

A Dhaka court rejected a bail petition of detained former BNP lawmaker Nasiruddin Ahmed Pintu yesterday in connection with the Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) carnage.

House has inherent power to scrap JS membership

Advocate Fazle Rabbi Mia, chief of the parliamentary probe committee that investigated graft allegation of former speaker Jamiruddin Sircar, yesterday reiterated that the House has its inherent power to scrap membership of any lawmaker on grounds of moral turpitude.

Jackson was murdered, claims sister

Michael Jackson was killed by a band of greedy hangers-on, his sister La Toya alleged in interviews with British Sunday newspapers.

BNP to seek time extension

BNP Secretary General Khandaker Delwar Hossain yesterday said they would apply to the Election Commission seeking time extension for holding party council as the party is not prepared for it now.

Maoists kill 24 cops in eastern India

Indian Maoists killed at least 24 policemen, including a senior officer, in an ambush yesterday in the eastern state of Chhattisgarh, officials said.

Public gatherings banned in restive Chinese city

Authorities banned public gatherings in China's restive Urumqi city as Han Chinese marked a traditional day of mourning yesterday for those who died in ethnic unrest one week earlier.

Ex-Tajik minister dies in police custody

A powerful ex-minister in Tajikistan was killed in a shootout, the interior ministry of the Central Asian country said Sunday, one day after saying that he was under arrest.

Police sue 800 over clash at Bhasani University

Police yesterday filed a case against 800 unidentified people including students following the clash at Maulana Bhasani University of Science and Technology (MBUST) among students, locals and police on Saturday.

Human chainto stop tree felling in Sitakunda

A human chain was formed in front of Chittagong Press Club yesterday afternoon demanding an end to tree plundering at Sitakunda coastal belt.

Japan PM's party suffers blow in Tokyo election

Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso's ruling party appeared to be heading for defeat yesterday in a Tokyo election seen as a crucial test of his popularity ahead of a nationwide vote, media reports said.

Netanyahu invites Abbas to talk ME peace

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday invited the Palestinians to sit down immediately to talk peace, but the Palestinian leader maintained his demand that first Israel must halt all West Bank settlement construction.

Pakistan terms US drone strikes 'futile'

Claiming that no top al-Qaeda leader is present inside its territory, Pakistan has termed the continuous US drones attacks in its 'lawless' tribal areas along the Afghanistan border as 'futile'.

Editorial

Handling the population issue

Investing in women as a way of advancing the cause of national development looks like an eminently sensible idea. And that is what the observance of World Population Day this year has been all about. There can hardly be any arguing with the fact that a rising population threatens to put at risk all strategies related to economic progress in the country; and this despite a declining population growth of 1.39 per cent at the present time. And in spite of the rate of reproductivity now being 2.7 per cent as compared to 6.3 per cent in 1971, there are some rather obvious reasons why the population issue needs to be handled in a more streamlined manner. Foremost among them is the question of how men more than women are dealing with the population control programme at the various tiers of society. For instance, it has been suggested that of the 55.8 per cent of those who employ family planning methods, a meagre 5.2 per cent happen to be men. In other words, the apathy of men toward family planning as opposed to the greater sense of awareness of the issue on the part of women is a stark reality.

BDR-BSF conference

There is no question that better cooperation is needed between the Indian BSF and our own BDR border guards, and it is in the interest of both countries that a climate of calm prevails along the border.

Truants rule the roost

ACCORDING to a Transparency International, Bangladesh (TIB) report, there has been a wastage of about Tk.5 crore 42 lac in the 39-day first session of the much-touted ninth Parliament. The wastage is attributed to truancy in our Parliament, resulting in the lack of quorum. The wastage occurs as the speaker has to keep the sitting adjourned till the quorum can be achieved. In the meantime, the running of the parliamentary establishment costs on an average Tk.35,000 per minute. It is learnt that their are five such sessions in a year, i.e.25 sessions during the tenure of a government. At the present rate, that will result in the loss of over Tk.100 crore. Isn't it deplorable on the part of those whose conduct and callous attitude make the loss inevitable!

Politiconomy of CO2

POLITICS, Technology and Economics -- which I call politiconomy -- are innately inseparable from almost all human activities -- and greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide (CO2) -- emission is a perfect example of that disquisition.

Sports

Tigers fight back

Tamim Iqbal and Imrul Kayes took Bangladesh to 26-0 in their second innings, and a deficit of 43 runs, at stumps against the West Indies on the third day of the first Test on Saturday.

Aussies need 3 wkts

Australia were just three wickets away from winning the first Ashes Test against England heading into the last session of the fifth and final day at Sophia Gardens here on Sunday.

Zia unbeaten champion

Grand Master Ziaur Rahman added another feather to his crown when the number one chess player of the country lifted the Mercantile Bank 35th National Chess Championship in style at the Federation hall-room yesterday.

Nuwan toys with Pakistan

Seamer Nuwan Kulasekera took a career-best 4-21 as Sri Lanka took early charge of the second cricket Test after bowling Pakistan out for a paltry 90 on Sunday.

Mash unlikely to bowl

Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza is unlikely to bowl in the on-going first Test against West Indies but will be able to bat with a runner, confirmed a Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) official last night.

Teletalk cricket

Khabongpuria Samobai Samity reachesd the final after defeating Ujjibito Jubo Sangha by 88 runs in the first semifinal of the first Tele talk cricket tournament held at the Khagrachhari Government high school ground yesterday.

Amre looks on the bright side

Pravin Amre, the India's coach for the Emerging Players' tournament in Australia, has said the series challenge the players' fitness as they play seven ODIs and two Twenty20s in a span of 13 days, starting July 20.

Hunte will solve it

West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) president Julian Hunte has vowed to put an end to the tribal warfare that has constantly engulfed negotiations between his organisation and the West Indies Players' Association (WIPA).

Brac continue to plunder

The third day of the Ascent Group 5-a-side indoor corporate soccer cup saw Brac Bank keep up their amazing goalscoring exploits as they hammered Ispahani Group by 10-1.

Gaibandha cricket

TDS Krira Chakkra defeated All Star Cricket King by 10 runs in first match while Motiur Rahman Smrity Sangsad defeated Adarsha Cricklet Club by two wickets in second match in the Bonarpara Premier Cricket League at the Bonarpara Kazi Azher Ali High School ground yesterday.

'Two-faced Mourinho'

England defender Glen Johnson claimed Sunday that a breakdown in trust with former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho lead to his departure from the Premier League club.

Becks strikes back

England star midfielder David Beckham ripped Los Angeles Galaxy teammate Landon Donovan as unprofessional ahead of his return to the Major League Soccer squad on Monday.

Zlatan off the market

Inter Milan are no longer willing to sell Zlatan Ibrahimovic and have taken Serie A's top scorer off the market, according to club president Massimo Moratti.

Deco to stay and fight

Chelsea midfielder Deco is prepared to stay at the club after seeing Inter Milan withdraw their interest in him.

Kun going nowhere

Atletico Madrid president Enrique Cerezo has denied reports that Manchester United have made a player plus cash deal for highly-rated striker Sergio Aguero.

Lopez signs for Lyon

Argentine striker Lisandro Lopez has signed a five-year deal with French club Lyon worth 24 million euros.

Real in for Agostino

Serie A side Udinese have confirmed that Real Madrid are interested in signing Italian midfielder Gaetano D'Agostino.

Juve hope to rope in Melo

Juventus hope to complete Felipe Melo's £21m transfer from Fiorentina next week.

Webber's maiden win

Mark Webber secured his maiden Formula One victory and Australia's first since 1981 when he led teammate Sebastian Vettel home in a triumphant one-two for the Red Bull team in Sunday's German Grand Prix.

Seles in Hall of Fame

Nine-time Grand Slam singles champion Monica Seles and three others were inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame on Saturday.

North looks ahead

Australia century-maker Marcus North said winning the Ashes opener here at Sophia Gardens would be especially sweet for the tourists after all the hype surrounding the ground's Test debut.

Lance's challenge

Lance Armstrong believes six days of hard climbing on the Tour de France will reveal whether he, or teammate Alberto Contador, will emerge as Astana's real yellow jersey contender.

WICB issues warning to top players

The West Indies board (WICB) has upped the ante in its ongoing clash with its own players by issuing a media release stating its "unswerving commitment" to the current squad playing Bangladesh and all those who made themselves available for selection.

Harmison's reminder

Discarded England pace bowler Steve Harmison pushed his case for an Ashes call-up when he took five wickets for Durham against Yorkshire in the county championship on Saturday.

Peirsol's record double

Aaron Peirsol completed a world record double at the US Swimming Championships with his 200m backstroke triumph on Saturday, but said the battle for supremacy in the event remains wide open.

Business

Exports stay sluggish

Exports stayed sluggish in the global economic downturn, as earnings from shipments increased only 4.18 percent in May from the same period a year ago.

Excess liquidity hits banks

Excess liquidity in banks reached as high as Tk 27,716 crore in April, pointing to sluggish investment.

Orange farming gains ground

Favourable soil and weather conditions in Panchagarh have put orange farming in the spotlight.

BTRC moves to ease mobile users' woes

The telecom watchdog is set to launch a benchmark for mobile phone operators to ensure quality of their services, a move that is expected to safeguard the users' interests in the Bangladesh's rapidly growing telecom market.

OTC to trade junk shares on DSE

Dhaka Stock Exchange in a bid to facilitate junk share trade will set up an over the counter (OTC) market in the next two months.

Kryolan make-up brand launched

German-based professional make-up company Kryolan yesterday launched a wide variety of products to serve local professionals in different media channels, including film, television, theatre and photo shoots for magazines.

Visa trading should go

Bangladesh should impose a total ban on visa trading by brokers to restore migration of workers to Saudi Arabia and bring discipline to the lucrative labour market in the Gulf region, said TAM Fakhrul Basher, a Bangladeshi expatriate in the kingdom.

Ready to roll or still on the rocks?

Some hard data is now underpinning prospects for a global economic recovery, but world leaders urge caution and at least one says the worst is still to come for some.

Better than Bali

Investors are lining up for a piece of Vietnam's "China Beach", once a wartime R&R playground for US soldiers, which industry players say could become a tourism hotspot to rival Bali or Phuket.

World stocks show unease

Global equities are falling as US banks prepare their latest earnings, throwing doubt on a swift recovery for the world economy following the worst downturn since the 1930s.

Iran inflation dips in June

Iranian inflation, one of the biggest economic challenges facing the country, fell slightly to 22.5 percent in the Iranian calendar month ending June 21, the Sarmayeh newspaper said on Sunday.

HSBC to facilitate regional trade

The Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) Bangladesh has moved to facilitate integration between regional private sector businesses to boost trade and commerce.

Canada hails Bangladesh for utilising duty-free access

Parliamentary Secretary to the Canadian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Deepak Obhrai has praised acumen and expertise of Bangladeshi business community in taking full advantage of duty-free access of Bangladeshi goods granted by Canada.

Thailand looks poised for good recovery despite global gloom

Lalest data show that the final demand in the US market, which is related to Asia's exports, including those from Thailand, remains uncertain as of the end of May.

Pizza Hut's new item hits market

Pizza Hut, an international restaurant chain by Transcom Foods Ltd, launched the much-awaited 'Stuffed Crust Pizza' at a ceremony in Dhaka yesterday.

Nepal agrees to enhance trade with Pakistan

Pakistan and Nepal Saturday agreed to take all possible measures to increase the volume of bilateral trade between the two countries.

Boeing keen to sell aircraft to Biman

The US-based Boeing Commercial Airplanes has expressed its interest to sell their new-generation aircraft to the country's flag career-- Biman Bangladesh Airlines.

Slow stimulus spending brings out complaints

The slow impact of a massive US economic stimulus program approved earlier this year has prompted renewed talk about another effort to stem rising unemployment and jolt the economy from recession.

German exporters say world trade picking up

The slump in global trade has already hit its lowest ebb and German trade should also begin to perk up in the coming months, a press report said Sunday, citing a study from a major German industry body.

Swatch expects sales to improve in second half

The world's biggest watchmaker Swatch Group is expecting sales to improve in the second half of this year after a difficult start to the year, group's CEO Nick Hayek said in remarks published Sunday.

CIT Group plans to hire bankruptcy adviser

CIT Group Inc is working with a premier bankruptcy firm as the troubled commercial lender awaits word on whether it will receive funds from a federal program designed to help banks, the company confirmed Saturday.

Metropolitan

Improve reproductive health service for RMG workers

Speakers at a seminar yesterday stressed the need for improving reproductive health services for garment workers.

Fate of DU BCL hall bodies uncertain

Announcement of hall unit committees of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) at Dhaka University (DU) unit has become uncertain following a conflict among top leaders of the central and DU units of the organisation over placing “men loyal to them”.

Committee seeks more time to submit draft

The National Education Policy Formulation Committee would seek three more weeks or a month for submitting the draft of the much-awaited national education policy, said Dr Quazi Kholiquzzaman Ahmad, co-chair of the committee, yesterday.

AG asked to inform SC of govt position

The Supreme Court (SC) has directed the attorney general (AG) to inform it, within two weeks, of the government's position in implementing the judicial service pay commission's recommendations to enhance salaries and other facilities of the judicial officials.

Govt firm to establish rights of challenged persons: Nahid

Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid yesterday said the government is determined to establish the rights of the physically and mentally challenged persons within the law.

Hearing adjourned until tomorrow

A Dhaka court yesterday for the second time adjourned the hearing till tomorrow on the government petitions seeking further investigation into the August 21 grenade attack cases following a time petition by the defence lawyers.

Govt urged not to acquire land

Banarupa Kalyan Samity yesterday urged the government not to acquire the land of 'Banarupa Abasik Prakalpa', a housing project in Khilkhet area, to set up the proposed Rab headquarters there by evicting the plot owners.

Take preparation to face probable floods

Food and Disaster Management Minister Dr Abdur Razzaque yesterday instructed officials of ministries and departments concerned to take necessary preparation in advance to face probable floods in the country.

Govt to try for jobs for educated persons with disabilities: Minister

Saying that persons with disabilities should not be deprived of their rights, Social Welfare Minister Enamul Haq Mostafa Shahid yesterday said that the government would try to ensure employment opportunities for those who are educated.

Aggrieved JCD men continue protest

Aggrieved leaders and activists of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) continued their demonstrations on the Dhaka University campus yesterday protesting the expulsion order to four leaders of the organisation's DU unit.

Govt urged to raise tax on junk food

Speakers at a roundtable yesterday called on the government to increase taxes on junk food and soft drinks that are causing different non-communicable diseases.

Call to build society based on logic

The 'Mutual Trust Bank-The Daily Star Debate Contest 2009' kicked off in the port city yesterday with a call to build a society based on logic and reasoning.

Action against airport officials soon to end passengers' woes

Civil Aviation and Tourism Minister Golam Mohammad Quader yesterday said the government is going to take tough and exemplary action against the officials and employees engaged in harassing the passengers at the airports.

Sattar made envoy to Iran

Khandakar Abdus Sattar, director general at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, has been appointed Bangladesh Ambassador to Iran.

Zahirul Haque made addl AG

Supreme Court lawyer AKM Zahirul Haque was appointed additional attorney general yesterday.

Body recovered at Ashulia

Police recovered the body of an unidentified youth aged about 28 from a paddy filed at Munshipara in Ashulia yesterday.

Bangladesh replaces contingent in UNOCI

Bangladesh is replacing its Army Contingent in United Nations Operations in Ivory Coast (UNOCI), says an ISPR release.

Fugitive BDR man arrested in Jessore

A fugitive BDR man was arrested on Saturday morning from Pachbaria area here when he was trying to free three drug peddlers bribing the police.

Time to apply for withdrawal of cases ends

The deadline for filing applications for withdrawal of 'politically motivated' cases ended yesterday and the government decided not to extend the time anymore.

SC upholds chamber judge's order

The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday upheld its chamber judge's order staying the High Court (HC) verdict that directed the government to allow reactivation of frozen bank accounts and fixed deposit receipts (FDRs) of BNP lawmaker Barrister Moudud Ahmed.

Former PSC member Prof Mahfuz gets 8 years

A Mymensingh court yesterday sentenced Prof Mahfuzur Rahman, former member of Public Service Commission (PSC), to eight years in prison in a tax evasion case.

Road march to protest move to lease oil, gas blocks

The road march of National Committee to Protect Oil, Gas, Mineral Resources, Power and Port from Dhaka towards Cox's Bazar to protest leasing of offshore blocks to foreign companies to explore oil and gas reached Mohipal in Feni yesterday.

Shibir cadres threaten to paralyse RU campus

The cadres of Islami Chhatra Shibir at Rajshahi University (RU) yesterday hurled abusive words to Shaheed Samsuzzoha Hall Provost Dr Mortuza Khaled and RU Proctor Prof Chowdhury M Jakaria and threatened to paralyse the campus as they launched a drive to free several rooms of the hall from illegal occupiers.

SCF hails HC directives

Sector Commanders' Forum (SCF) yesterday hailed the High Court (HC) directives to identify and preserve the historic places related to the Liberation War.

Tree plantation on JU campus begins

A tree plantation programme began on the Jahangirnagar University (JU) campus yesterday.

Appeal for help

Jumaina Ahmed Sariyah, a minor girl, has been suffering from blood cancer, says a press release.

Habibur, Nazrul BILS chairman, secy gen

Md Habibur Rahman Siraj and Nazrul Islam Khan were elected chairman and secretary general of the executive committee of Bangladesh Institute of Labour Studies (BILS) for the next two years, says a press release.

Three killed in road accidents

Three people were killed and 25 others injured in separate road accidents in Narsingdi and Dinajpur in last two days.

GC Dev Memorial Lecture

Prof Syed Manzoorul Islam and Prof Mohammad Mohabbat Khan delivered GC Dev Memorial Lectures 2002 and 2003 respectively at RC Majumder auditorium at Dhaka University (DU) yesterday.

200 tons Saudi relief for Aila victims

Saudi Ambassador Dr Abdullah Al Bussairy yesterday said 200 tons of relief materials from Saudi Arabia will arrive here on Thursday and Friday for the victims of cyclone Aila.

National

Villagers themselves build embankment finally

The people of Gobordhan village in Mohishkhocha union in Aditmari upazila under Lalmonirhat district have joined voluntary service to construct a three kilometre long embankment to protect their life and property from erosion and flooding by the Teesta River.

Selim, Shahadat to be quizzed keeping them face to face

Selim alias Saifullah and Abdur Rahim alias Shahadat, two top leaders of Islam O Muslim, a new offshoot of JMB, were taken on remand in Rajshahi and Chapainawab-ganj yesterday.

Cox's Bazar police collecting info about residents, tenants

Cox's Bazar district police, in a bid to reduce crimes, have asked the 6,000 residents of the town (including house owners and tenants) to submit detailed information about themselves and their photographs to police.

Hospital staff 'protest' action against offence

Employees of Bogra Shahid Ziaur Rahman Medical College and Hospital yesterday observed two-hour work stoppage after hospital Director Brig Gen Shafiqul Islam took action against an employee for playing trick on a patient to send him to a private clinic.

Three sued for war crimes

Three alleged rajakars have been sued for killing a man in Abhoynagar upazila of the district during Liberation War in 1971.

60 hurt as villagers clash

At least 60 people including a union parishad (UP) chairman were injured in a clash between the people of two unions here over teasing a school girl in Sadar upazila on Sunday, police and witnesses said. A gang often teased a student of a high school in Kathi union on her way to school. When the girl's maternal uncle protested it on Sunday, the teasers started beating him at Kathi Bazar. A few people of neighbouring Majhigati union tried to resist the attackers. At this the teasers attacked them resulting in a bloody clash. Kathi union chairman Kamrul Islam Mollah was also assaulted during the clash and his motorbike was set on fire. No sooner had the news spread, people of Kathi union rushed to the spot and locked in a fierce clash. Both the groups were equipped with lethal weapons like knives, rods and sticks.

One gets life for rape

A Manikganj court on Sunday sentenced a youth to life term rigorous imprisonment (RI) for raping a young woman. Convict Sirajul Islam, 18, son of Akali Mia of Noarapa village under Singair police station was also find Tk 10,000 in default, to suffer one year more RI in jail. According to the prosecution story, convict Sirajul Islam entered the house of Halima Begum, 23, daughter of Karimmunshi of Binodpur village under the police station at night on May 19 in 2007 and raped her. Halima filed a case with the Women and Children Repression Prevention Special Tribunal on December 13, 2007 accusing three people.

Shibir cadre held at RU

Police arrested an outsider Shibir cadre during a raid on Shaheed Ziaur Rahman Hall of Rajshahi University (RU) on Friday midnight. Arrestee Abdus Salam is a second year student of Anthropology Department. He was held from Room No 203 as he stayed in the hall without any legal identity. The arrestee was later handed over to Motiher police. RU proctor Prof Chowdhury M Zakaria told newsmen that they along with police raided the hall following an information that outsider Shibir cadres were staying in the dormitory.

Life term for acid attack

A Chapainawabganj court yesterday sentenced one person to life term imprisonment for throwing acid on his wife in 2000. Judge Anwar Hossain of the Women and Children Repression Prevention Tribunal pronounced the verdict in absence of the accused. Convict Korban Ali is son of Sumuruddin of Ramkrishtopur-Jorbagan of Chapainawabganj municipality area. According to the prosecution story, mother of three Jarina Begum and her husband went to Mohanada river for a dip on April 5, 2000 at around 5:30am. When they reached the riverbank at Nayagola her husband suddenly threw acid on her inflicting serious burn injuries. The next day, victim's father Ekramul Haque filed a case with Chapainawabganj Sadar police station.

BNP leader sent to jail

Sirajdikhan upazila BNP general sectary, also Rajanagar Union Parishad chairman Jasim Uddin Khokan was sent to jail when he went to Munshiganj judicial magistrate's court yesterday for seeking bail in an extortion case filed by Rajanagar UP woman member Selina Akhter. Selina alleged that on October 20, 2008 Khokan called her and her husband Moudud Ahmed to his house and demanded Tk one lakh illegal toll. The chairman also threatened to drive them out of the village if they fail to pay the amount, she said in her compliant. On the same day Selina filed a case with the court of judicial magistrate Nargis Akhter against the chairman.

Vow to fight corruption

Several hundred people yesterday brought out a procession, formed a human chain and held a rally vowing to root out corruption from the society. Pragati Durniti Birodhi Pracharana Samannay Committee organised the programmes in the town to create awareness among people about corruption. Speakers at the rally alleged widespread corruption in every government organisation and department. They emphasised the need for strengthening transparency and accountability in the government organisations for ensuring steady growth. They said youths can play a vital role to arrest corruption raising their voice against the evil.

BCL, Shibir men clash

Two persons were injured as cadres of BCL and Islamic Chhatra Shibir clashed at Dinajpur Government College over a trifling mater on Sunday. Injured Ripon, 22, and Kayes, 23, are outsider activists of BCL. Sources said that the clash ensued around 12.30 over a seating place on the campus. Shibir cadres left the place but reappeared with a group led by Motiur Rahman and Abdul Kayyum, Shibir president and general secretary respectively of Dinajpur Government College unit. They attacked the BCL men suddenly with wooden sticks and brickbats leaving at least two people wounded on the spot. Protesting the attack, the BCL men brought a protest procession on the campus. They also submitted a memo to the principal demanding punishment of the attackers.

Letters

Grabbers back in business

A photograph in the front page of The Daily Star of 4th July issue drew my attention. Again river encroachers have started to fill up the water bodies near Ashulia Bridge on the outskirts of the capital. Just a few days ago, the government demolished some illegal structures on both sides of the Turag river and took vow to drive encroachers once for all at any cost. When this operation was going on, I was thinking how many days it would continue. After a few days we saw the eviction operation coming to a halt due to legal complications and some other unknown reasons. It was proved again that “We can start but cannot finish”. Demolition work created further obstruction to free flow of river water.

Higher education

Your daily published the news on the protest by students to stop the introduction of evening MA at the department of English of Dhaka University.

Dying city

The capital city is dying and it is dying fast. The four rivers surrounding the city are already dead and now they are drying up and losing both depth and width. The underground water level has gone down to a record low and could result in a devastating earthquake. The city's electricity supply is in dire straits. The traffic situation is the talk of the town. Carjacking and mugging are increasing every day and on top of that more used cars are imported and unauthorized rickshaws are legally back on the streets.

Car owners, take care!

A recent research has revealed that the car dashboard, sofa, air-freshener emit Benzene, a highly toxic compound which causes cancer. Exposure even to low levels of Benzene can cause dizziness, drowsiness, headaches, confusion, tremors, rapid heartbeat, and unconsciousness. Long-term exposure can damage the bone marrow and lead to blood problems, like anaemia and leukaemia. It also weakens the immune system and targets organs, such as kidney, lung, liver, and brain.

Donations to mosques

Imam of a mosque is a honourable position in an Islamic society. But almost all the Imams of our mosques pay their attention to collecting donations from the devotees. Sometimes after completing Jumma prayer, they ask and motivate the devotees to donate money to the mosque.

BTTB

Suddenly, my residential telephone got disconnected for reasons not known to me. Initially, I thought it to be line trouble. I requested the local complaint centre to restore my telephone line. In the mean time two more days were gone. Neither my telephone was restored nor I got any feedback. Again I contacted the complaint centre. They informed me that my telephone had been disconnected and told me to contact the office for restoration. I sent a man to the telephone revenue office in G.P.O. building to know about the matter but he could not make any way out. The next day I personally went to the revenue office. After looking here and there I got the revenue section room. About 20/25 people sitting face to face in a congested room were working in the revenue section. The situation in the room seemed to me very much chaotic like a kitchen market devoid of any congenial atmosphere for doing office work. Finally, I could reach the upper division assistant of Rampura area and came to know that my telephone had been disconnected for default of payment. I produced the paid bill copies up to April'09 to prove that the payment was up to date. The person told me that the charge due for the month of June'09 remained unpaid. I told him that this was middle of June and normally bill for the month is available during the 3rd week or so of the month. As such, I have not yet received the bill, so how could I make payment? He told me to take a fresh bill from the office to make payment and to inform the office. He prepared for me a bill with a validity up to 30th June'09. However, he agreed to connect my line by the evening. Really I got my telephone restored in the evening. I did not make payment against the prepared bill, rather I waited for the normal bill to come. Yes, it came around June 24th'09 with validity up to June 30th. And I paid within the time. Even after all these things I could not understand as to why my telephone was disconnected putting me in trouble and thus deceiving BTTB from revenue earning.

Joyriding

The front page news feature on the obnoxious style of car rides commonly practised by youngsters these days (of course encouraged by their loving parents) is not only a social nuisance but also a threat to the safety of all on the road, passengers of other vehicles and especially pedestrians and rickshaws as well. In addition to the reckless driving at high speed and making unbearable noise from their cars, the extremely loud music also affects the hearing of small children. With such vehicles on the road, all are at risk, from a health point of view as well as safety. This is a serious issue and should not be overlooked. It is not harmless fun.

Religious bigots and fatwa

The recent “fatwa” induced inhuman punishment meted out to a woman for alleged social misconduct on the basis of a mullah's judgment, as reported in your pages on 29 June, is a crude and sadistic act of illegal violence. He should be taken for psychiatric treatment, though he may be otherwise sound in body and mind. Such behaviour cannot be tolerated in a civilized society. In contrast the mullah is a prime example of applying uncivilized “ law of the jungle” in Bangladesh!

US and Latin America

The ousted Honduran President Manuel Zelaya vowed to return to Honduras in an attempt to reclaim power. Zelaya was forced out of office and exiled to Costa Rica in a military coup d'etat.

Iranian protestors

Vast majority of Iran's women and youth, who are more than 70% of the population, had voted for reformist candidate Mir-Hossain Mousavi and yet Ahmadinejad claimed that he had won the June 12 election. When the news spread that Ahmadinejad had won more than 60 percent of the vote cast, most Iranians reacted with shock. By June 14, the shock and disbelief had given away to moral outrage and the people of Iran took to the streets to protest such a well-orchestrated voting fraud by the regime. Their demands were simple: a re-election or at least a total recount.

Failed parliamentarians

It is very sad that most of the parliamentarians of the country are not serious about their duties which has been revealed by the TIB. The report says that almost Tk 5.5 crore got wasted due to quorum crisis in the first session. What I want to say is that it is the main duty of the parliamentarians to modify and formulate laws, being present in parliament, and they know it very well before being elected, but soon after they get elected they forget their main duties and become busy with their personal business, leaving their main task incomplete. This way the main target of democracy remains unfulfilled. A few days back one of the veteran ruling party lawmakers exhorted the opposition lawmakers to resign their position as they are not joining the parliament sessions. One reasonable question arises here: the Awami League led government won more than two thirds of the total number of seats and if one third of their MPs join parliament sessions on time, there will be no quorum crisis. Do they perform their duties properly?

Patriotism

The government is going to change some books of primary and secondary schools at a time. The intellectuals of Bangladesh said that Sheikh Mujibur Rahman is not underscored in those books, rather importance has been given to Ziaur Rahman. It is really a gigantic task.

Stop wasting resources

Millions of cases are gathering dusts in different courts and police stations in our country, but no one has time for those. Our poor people have to wait 10/15 years before they get their cases heard by a judge (some people have even passed away while waiting!). Our poor people pay the fees of lawyers and police! It is for this reason I find it surprising that within a few months of the AL government taking office, no less than the highest court in our country found the time to tell us that Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, not Ziaur Rahman, had proclaimed the country's independence in 1971.

Local government

In our country, local government structure is not developed enough to contribute to national development. Like any other least developed country, Bangladesh has been facing many problems in the way of its development. Local government may be a strong institution in development. In Bangladesh, the local government consists of three tiers : Union Parishad, Upzila Parishad and Zilla Parishad. Among these three tiers, the Union Parishad can play a significant role in development. The Union Parishad will have some responsibilities like it will maintain birth and death records, it must have information about total land of the respective union and the total arable land. Besides, it will record total crop number and the quantity of crops that are produced in that particular union all the year round. About population, it will have information about the total number of people including their age, profession etc.

Unpunished war criminals

Mian Tufail Mohammad, the former chief of Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan (JIP), died in Lahore on June 25. From 1966 to 1972 Tufail was the West Pakistan chief, while Golam Azam in East Pakistan and Abul Aala Maududi (died in 1979) was the all Pakistan chief of JIP. In the name of Islam, these top JIP leaders were directly involved and played a key role in the heinous war crimes of the Pakistan Army in 1971.

Our pride

It is amazing news for the citizens of Bangladesh because our pride Cox's Bazar & Sundarbans are acquiring the second & third position in seven new wonders of nature. Many people don't know what the wonders are, nor do they know how to cast vote

International

No talks with Taliban until it cuts ties with Qaeda: US

The United States has ruled out any negotiations with the Taliban until it lays down arms and severe all its ties with al-Qaeda.

Lankan Tamil ally demands freedom for 300,000 war-hit civilians

Sri Lanka's main moderate Tamil political group Sunday accused the government of holding some 300,000 war-displaced civilians in "open prisons" and demanded their immediate release.

Relief, rehabilitation in Swat, Malakand to cost billions: UN

The rehabilitation and reconstruction work in the war ravaged Swat and Malakand Divisions would cost billions of dollars, the United Nations (UN) has said.

Private armies on frontline of Pak anti-Taliban war

Six months ago, Fahimuddin was a Pakistani businessman and local councillor. Today he heads a private militia using rocket launchers, guns, grenades and daggers to repel Islamist attacks.

5 killed in Delhi metro bridge collapse

One section of a concrete bridge being built for the Indian capital's metro rail system collapsed Sunday, crushing to death five workers and injuring 13, officials said.

Congress set for reshuffle in party ahead of assembly polls

Ahead of assembly elections in three states and organisational elections next year, the much awaited reshuffle in the AICC is expected later this month.

Delhi Police raises anti-terror team

The Delhi Police is raising a Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team to effectively tackle 26/11-like terrorist attacks and hostage crisis.

200 insurgents killed in Afghan operation

Mainly British and Afghan troops have killed up to 200 insurgents in a major assault on Taliban strongholds in southern Afghanistan launched three weeks ago, the Afghan interior ministry said Sunday.

Taliban pushed back in Afghanistan: Obama

US President Barack Obama said US and Nato-led troops had pushed back the Taliban in Afghanistan but he warned that there was still a long, hard campaign ahead.

Obama calls for closer 'engagement' with Syria

US President Barack Obama said he was troubled by Syria's behaviour but hoped for progress in ties with former foe Damascus, in an interview to be screened Sunday.

Iran preparing package for talks with West

Iran is preparing its stands on political, security and international issues so that they can become a basis for talks with the West and calm down the mounting international pressure.

Cheney ordered CIA to conceal counterterrorism programme

US former vice president Dick Cheney ordered the CIA to withhold information about a secret counterterrorism programme from Congress for eight years, The New York Times reported on its website Saturday.

Xinjiang people hope to mend ties with ethnic groups

Nearly one week has passed since the deadly violence in far northwestern China's Urumqi City, the shockwave of the riot still can be felt even in a farmhouse 1,000 km away from the capital of Xinjiang.

Separatism, terror link to Xinjiang riots doubtful

China has pointed the finger at Uighur separatists and terrorists for the recent deadly unrest in its Muslim-populated far northwest, but experts question how real those threats are.

CPM acts tough, Kerala CM out of Politburo

The infighting within the CPM came out in the open when Kerala Chief Minister VS Achutanandan was removed from the Politburo on Sunday. However, he will stay on as Chief Minister of the state.

Jyoti Basu in hospital, condition stable

Nonagenarian Marxist patriarch Jyoti Basu was admitted to a hospital today after he fell unconscious following acute breathing trouble. The condition of Basu, who turned 96 on July 8, is now stable, doctors attending on him said.

Rich people to blame for carbon emission

As the world grapples with the challenge of climate change, the wealthy seems to be caught on the wrong side, with a study saying that rich people and their lifestyles account for a major chunk of the carbon emissions globally.

Flash flood kills 14 hikers in China

At least 14 hikers were killed when a flash flood swept them away in a canyon in southwest China, as torrential rain battered the area, state media reported yesterday.

Arts & Entertainment

All for mainstream Bengali movies

The doe-eyed quintessential Bengali beauty Purnima is perhaps the reigning dream girl in Bangladeshi cinema. She has been a part of the film industry for over a decade now, and has won the hearts of millions throughout the country.

It’s Dr. Shah Rukh Khan from now on

Bollywood Mogul Shah Rukh Khan has been conferred with an honorary doctorate in Arts from the University of Bedfordshire, UK, says a press release. At the time of his acceptance of the honour from Professor Les Ebdon, Vice Chancellor and Chief Executive of the University, on July 10, Shah Rukh said, “I am delighted that the NGO Routes 2 Roots nominated me for the Honorary Doctorate in Arts…Today I feel that I am part of the illustrious alumni of this prestigious University. I look forward to doing my bit in providing necessary assistance to the deserving students for higher education in my University.”

Commence: New band on the rise

It was the early 1990s. Three music lovers and friends -- Shuvashish, Rony and Jacob -- wanted to form a band. They were later joined by fellow music enthusiast Mamun. Thus the band 'Commence' launched its musical voyage.

150th episode of Amader Rannaghar tonight

Banglavision will air the 150th episode of cooking show "Amader Rannaghar" tonight at 9:05 pm.

Khalid Khan and Chanchal Khan on O Bondhu Amar

Ekushey TV will air the talk show "O Bondhu Amar" tonight at 10:10 pm. Celebrities who happen to be friends in real life, are invited on the show.

OP-ED

What keeps the students away?

IN our country only about half the population over 11 years of age are literate. This includes those with "initial level literacy" ("ability to read and write sentences, and know the four basic rules of arithmetic," with limited ability to use these skills) and those with "advanced level literacy" ("ability to read and write fluently, competency in four arithmetic rules and ability to use the skills in everyday life"). There are more people in the former category (30.2%) than in the latter (18.6%) (Literacy Assessment 2008).

Amending Article 70

THE Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) report, titled "Parliament Watch 2009," released on July 4, recommended, inter alia, amendment of Article 70 of the Constitution for allowing lawmakers to play their due role. Records show that the proposal made earlier by some constitutional experts and civil society members for amending or abolishing this article failed to get momentum.

Beaten into shape

THE physical education teacher at my school used to confuse the terms "corporal punishment" and "capital punishment." When the headmaster said he would allow corporal punishment, my teacher thought he was allowed to kill us.



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