The Daily Star

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Saturday, April 7, 2018

News of: Saturday, 1st of August, 2009

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Front Page

Mudslide kills 10 in Lama

Incessant rain for the last four days triggered a massive mudslide at Harinmara of Lama in Bandarban early yesterday killing 10 people, including six of a family, and destroying 50 houses.

Changes in cabinet

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday expanded her council of ministers by adding a minister and five state ministers, and reshuffling 10 council portfolios.

ARCF supplied grenades for Aug 21 attack

Kashmir-based militant outfit Asif Reza Commando Force (ARCF), which works together with Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), supplied grenades to LeT Bangladesh chapter leader Moulana Tajuddin for the August 21 attack in 2004.

Hill cutting poses risk of landslide

Hill cutting goes on unabatedly in different areas of Cox's Bazar town and suburbs for building dwellings, raising fears of landslides.

Call for UN recognition of 1971 genocide

The international conference on genocide in the capital yesterday called for a campaign for United Nations' recognition of the mass killings during the 1971 Liberation War as genocide.

Free ride goes on in off limits streets

Non-motorised vehicles continue to ply many of the city roads declared off limits to rickshaws and rickshaw vans, slowing down traffic movements and often creating severe gridlocks.

Risky living in Khulna

Over 1,000 people have been living dangerously in about 100 risky and dilapidated buildings in the city.

Heavy rain delays Dhaka team's visit

The visiting 10-member team of Bangladeshi parliamentarians yesterday could not visit the site of proposed Tipaimukh Hydropower Project in the Indian state of Manipur due to heavy rain.

Prof Yunus honoured

President Barack Obama will next month award the highest US civilian honor to 16 "agents of change" including Prof Muhammad Yunus, Desmond Tutu and Stephen Hawking, the White House said Thursday.

AL on path of its 'future leadership'

Awami League President Sheikh Hasina yesterday finalised names of 26 executive members of the party's working committee in consultation with the AL presidium members.

28 killed in serial bomb attacks on Baghdad mosques

Bombs exploded near five Shia mosques in Baghdad yesterday, killing at least 28 people, in an apparent coordinated attack that targeted worshippers leaving Juma prayers, Iraqi police and hospital officials said.

Top outlaw killed in 'shootout'

A regional leader of Purbo Banglar Communist Party (PBCP-ML) Janajuddho faction was killed in a "shootout" between his cohorts and law enforcers at Nabdah of Alamdanga in Chuadanga early yesterday.

Int'l help in probe key to proper trial

Legal Adviser to Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia Constanze Oehlrich yesterday said assistance from international communities for evidence and investigation is necessary to ensure legitimate and transparent trial of war crimes.

AL's anti-reformist strategy makes BNP hardliners happy

With the exclusion of “pro-reform” leaders from ruling Awami League's leadership, BNP hardliners are now optimistic about the omission of its “pro-reform” leaders from the party committees.


Minister for Shipping
Shajahan Khan

3 killed in bus crash

At least three people were killed and 20 injured while four others remained missing as a minibus skidded off the Habiganj-Baniachang road and plunged into the Shukti river in Baniachong upazila yesterday afternoon.

Suu Kyi verdict day deferred to August 11

A Myanmar court yesterday postponed its verdict in the internationally condemned trial of Aung San Suu Kyi until August 11, adding to uncertainty over the ruling junta's plans for the democracy icon.

Nigerian forces kill Islamist leader after uprising

Nigerian forces have shot dead an Islamist leader captured after an uprising that led to hundreds of deaths, with one police officer saying he pleaded for mercy before he was gunned down.

BSF kills 1

Indian Border Security Force (BSF) shot dead a Bangladeshi at Nimtola border point in sadar upazila of Chuadanga district early yesterday.

Iran blames foreign govts for killings during riot

Iran yesterday lashed out at foreign governments, accusing them of complicity in crimes and killings in the aftermath of the disputed re-election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.


Wind of change in AL leadership is welcome

With the exit of some old guards from the party's top policymaking body, the Presidium, and the induction of some new faces, it can be said that a wind of change has started to blow within the Awami League. Though some political observers are wont to term the change as something predictable, one cannot also deny the fact that the party rank and file had long been pressing for a change in its leadership. Their longing for a change in the leadership got more passionate in the wake of the party's massive victory in the last parliamentary elections. For the success is attributed by many to the slogan for a 'change.' So, the entry of some six new faces, many of whom are relatively younger, certainly marks a significant and welcome change in the party.

A heart-wrenching tale

We are deeply touched by the reported and photographically depicted ordeal of physical and mental torture having been suffered by a woman in Ramu upazila and her eventual escape from the tyrannical stranglehold of her husband. Taslima Akhter, a 20-year old mother of one child, remained shackled for 12 days from her legs up to the neck and tied to a tree by daytime and a pole at night in an exhibition of barbaric cruelty.

Rights of the accused must be upheld

SENSITIVE issues like taking an alleged offender on 'remand,' 'extra-judicial killings' through cross-fire or 'death in custody' have become a source of concern for those who are interested in the upholding of human rights and due process of law. Controversy has also been generated because of less than clear answers from those in charge of maintenance of law and order in the ministry of home affairs.

The crisis of values

I don't think that India is an exception. Like other South Asian countries it is also lessening in fundamental values. In an unequal society, the urge to survive has come to prevail. The result is that the people have stopped differentiating between right and wrong. Politics or sheer greed may have accelerated the slide down the hill. But it is there for all to see and feel.


Transfer window opens today

The transfer window for the 3rd B. League will be declared open today at the BFF House.

Sir Bobby passes away

Former England and Newcastle manager Sir Bobby Robson died on Friday at the age of 76 after a long battle with cancer.

England take control

England swing duo James Anderson and Graham Onions took nine wickets between them Friday as Australia were bowled out for 263 on the second day of the third Ashes Test at Edgbaston.

Indian stars at odds with WADA

India's cricket chiefs will meet in an emergency session on Sunday after leading players refused to sign an anti-doping code, saying it infringed their privacy.

Pakistan nears venue solution

Pakistan moved closer to solving its World Cup 2011 dispute and a court Friday extended a stay order on relocating the event's headquarters out of the country, an official said.

Ponting overtakes Border

Australia captain Ricky Ponting overtook Allan Border as his country's leading run-scorer in Test cricket on the second day of the third Ashes Test against England here on Friday.

Good start for Tigers

New ball pair Mahbubul Alam and Nazmul Hossain gave Bangladesh the perfect start in the third and final one-day in their mission to whitewash the West Indies at Warner Park, St Kitts yesterday.

Schumacher tests with Ferrari

Seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher was back testing a racing car just 48 hours after announcing his shock return to Formula One racing, Ansa said on Friday.

Div III cricket

Sheikh Russell KC and Sunamganj Raghib Rabeya Cricketers emerged group D and B champions respectively after the qualifying round matches while Cricket of Pirates got walkover in another match in the Metropolis Third Division Cricket League yesterday.

Bayern see off MU

Manchester United suffered a penalty shoot-out defeat to hosts Bayern Munich after a goalless final of the Audi Cup.

Tribute flows for Robson

English football's leading figures paid tribute to Sir Bobby Robson on Friday after the former England coach lost his long battle with cancer.

Bent in hot water

England striker Darren Bent found himself in hot water after apparently using internet networking site Twitter to blast Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy for failing to rubber-stamp his proposed move to Sunderland.

'Robson like a father'

West Ham midfielder Kieron Dyer, a protege of Sir Bobby Robson's at Newcastle, wept during a tribute to the late footballing great at the Barclays Asia Trophy Friday, saying he was like a father to him.

Fergie forced to adapt

Sir Alex Ferguson admits Cristiano Ronaldo's departure to Real Madrid has forced him to change the way Manchester United will play this season.

Leonardo wants reinforcements

AC Milan lost their fifth pre-season match in a row and new coach Leonardo has reiterated his call for new signings at the seven-time European champions.

Eto'o starts with a win

Samuel Eto'o enjoyed a winning start to his Inter Milan career on Thursday when the Italian champions defeated French side Monaco 1-0 in a friendly match.

Parma sign Panucci

Parma have signed former Italy international defender Christian Panucci from Serie A rivals AS Roma, the club announced on their website on Friday.

Mutu loses Chelsea appeal

The Court of Arbitration for Sport on Friday rejected an appeal by former Chelsea striker Adrian Mutu against a 17.2-million-euro (25.3-million-dollar) damages payment to the London club.

Heinze going to Marseille

Marseille have reached agreement with Real Madrid over the transfer of Argentine defender Gabriel Heinze to the French side, the club said on Thursday.

Aussies salute English gesture

Australia coach Tim Nielsen hailed England's sportsmanship in allowing them to bring in reserve wicket-keeper Graham Manou for his Test debut here at Edgbaston on Thursday.

Schipper, Lochte join gold rush

Australian Jessicah Schipper jumped on the world record bandwagon Thursday, winning the women's 200m butterfly world title in 2min 03.41sec.

Venus to meet Maria in qtrs

Venus Williams booked a date in the WTA Bank of the West quarterfinals with Russian star Maria Sharapova by matching top-seeded sister Serena with a straight-set triumph on Thursday.

'Bring on Phelps'

Milorad Cavic doesn't want his longed-for 100m butterfly rematch against Michael Phelps to be tainted by any swimsuit controversy.

Kimi welcomes Schumi back

Former Formula One world champion Kimi Raikkonen said Thursday he is looking forward to working alongside Michael Schumacher at Ferrari.

Nat'l rugby final today

Chittagong beat Dhaka by 12-5 points in the first semifnal while Faridupur defeated Munshiganj by 18-8 points in the other as the two teams made it to the final of the Diamond Melamine 1st National Rugby Competition at the Outer Stadium Ground yesterday.

Finnan seals Pompey switch

Portsmouth signed Steve Finnan on a free transfer on Friday after the former Liverpool defender terminated his contract with Espanyol.

Fish advances

US second seed Mardy Fish saved three match points in a tie-breaker and rallied to defeat Australian Chris Guccione 6-7, 7-6, 6-4 and reach the ATP Los Angeles Open quarterfinals.


Govt firm to protect rights of people with disability

Labour, Employment and Expatriates' Welfare Minister Engineer Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain has said the present government is trying to turn the people with disability into skilled manpower by imparting necessary training.

Winners accorded reception

Bangladesh Mathematical Olympiad Committee (BMOC) yesterday accorded a reception to little mathematicians who won bronze medals in the 50th International Math Olympiad (IMO) in Germany for the first time for Bangladesh.

'JS body soon to solve problems of indigenous people'

Lawmaker Fazle Hossain Badsha at a discussion in Rajshahi yesterday said an initiative has been taken to form a parliamentary body to resolve the problems of indigenous people in the plain land.

Steps taken to ensure quality education at public varsities

Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid yesterday said the government has taken an initiative to ensure quality education in public universities by raising allocation to its core sectors with the financial assistance of the World Bank (WB).

Tk 100cr 10 priority projects for digital Bangladesh

Science and ICT ministry has drawn up 10 fresh projects to be implemented in the current fiscal with special priority to compliance with the ruling party's election manifesto that pledged to build a digital Bangladesh.

TB detection rate in Bangladesh higher than WHO target

The present detection rate of Tuberculosis, a common infectious disease that kills nearly 70,000 people in the country every year, is 72 percent, 2 percent higher than the target set by the World Health Organisation (WHO) for Bangladesh.

International process to be followed

The government is doing everything to make the process of trial of the war criminals internationally acceptable, Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Barrister Shafique Ahmed said yesterday.

Bangladesh-US joint medical camps in Kurigram

Bangladesh and US Armed Forces will jointly organise free medical camps for 10 days in Kurigram district beginning today.

FFs demand polls

A section of Bangladesh Muktijoddha Sangsad yesterday demanded its general election within the shortest possible time to make it more dynamic than before.

Root out communalism: Inu

Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JSD) President Hasanul Haq Inu yesterday said there is no alternative to the democratic non-communal forces to root out communal and militant forces that are still trying to raise their heads.

GP hands over two more clinic-on-wheels

Grameenphone Ltd. handed over two clinic-on-wheels to Sylhet Samaj Kalyan Sangstha (SSKS) and Jatiya Tarun Sangha (JTS) at a simple ceremony in the city on July 29 under Grameenphone Safe Motherhood and Infant Care Project, says a press release

'Balanced use of fertiliser can raise rice yield up to 25pc'

The recommendations of Soil Resource Development Institute (SRDI) for balanced use of fertiliser would help increase average yield of rice by 20-25 percent and other crops by 10-15 percent, said a study of soil scientists.

Delwar hopes new AL leaders will work for democracy

BNP Secretary General Khondaker Delwar Hossain welcomed the newly elected AL leaders and hoped that they will work for establishing democracy.

Moudud terms govt inefficient

BNP leader Moudud Ahmed yesterday said the induction of new members into the cabinet has exposed the failure of the government to deliver.

Hundi trader arrested

The police arrested an alleged hundi trader and seized Tk 10.5 lakh from his possession at Bakshibazar in the city yesterday.

Jalil to work for party if there is scope

Member of the newly formed Awami League Advisory Council Abdul Jalil MP yesterday said he would continue to work for the party if there is opportunity.

Extortionists kill schoolboy in Pabna

Extortionists chopped to death a school student at Maniknagar village under Ishwardi upazila in Pabna yesterday when he was trying to save his father from attack of the extortionists.

48-hr ultimatum to govt to change decision

Parbatya Bangalee Chhatra Parishad yesterday issued a 48 hours' ultimatum to the government to change its decision to withdraw one brigade of army and 35 temporary camps from several places in CHT by September.

Bus owners' assoc of SW dists goes on strike today

The bus-truck owners' association in south-western districts, including Jhenaidah, Chuadanga, Meherpur, Magura, Kushtia and Rajbari, will go on strike from today if human haulers are not removed from the roads forever.

Foreign national held in city

Police yesterday arrested a foreign national with equipment for making fake notes in the city.

Appeal for help

Kiron Chandra Mandol, 35, an employee of a private company in Dhaka, has been critically ill with kidney ailments, says a press release.


Obama extends Syria sanctions despite 'positive' signs

US President Barack Obama Thursday extended sanctions against Syrian or pro-Syrian personalities for provoking instability in neighbouring Lebanon, despite some positive recent signs from Damascus, the White House said."In the past six months, the United States has used dialogue with the Syrian government to address concerns and identify areas of mutual interest, including support for Lebanese sovereignty," Obama said in a statement.

Iran activists dread midnight knock of police raid

Iran's human rights activists say they live in dread of the midnight knock on the door or the car that pulls up next to them on the street, fearing that at any moment they might be arrested in the government's post-election clampdown.

Britain ends troop presence in Iraq after six years

Britain ended its troop presence in Iraq on Friday, concluding six years of military involvement in the country that began with the US-led invasion that ousted Saddam Hussein.

US insists on six-way talks for N Korea

The United States stood firm Thursday on seeking to revive six-nation talks with North Korea after the UN chief urged Washington to seize an opening to negotiate directly with the hardline state.

Ahmadinejad denies rift with Khamenei

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Friday that his relation with Iran's supreme leader is similar to that of "father and son," in his first comments since hardliners warned him to obey Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Mehr news agency reported.

Rights groups protest Nigerian response to uprising

Human rights groups on Thursday called on Nigeria to investigate the killing of an Islamist leader shot dead in military custody after leading an uprising that caused hundreds of deaths.

Jackson's mother gets permanent custody of his children

Michael Jackson's mother is to get permanent custody of the late pop star's children after agreeing a deal with the singer's ex-wife, attorneys for the two sides said in a statement Thursday.

Buta Singh's son admits involvement in bribery scam

National Commission for the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes Chairman Buta Singh's son Sarabjot Singh is reported to have cracked under the CBI's pressure and admitted on Friday to his involvement in a bribery scam.

Obama backs Philippine peace

President Barack Obama on Thursday threw his support behind peace moves between the Philippines and Muslim rebels as he met with President Gloria Arroyo.

72,000 evacuated due to Texas fire

A fire at a chemical plant has forced the evacuation of a Texas town of 72,000 people after it released a massive plume of orange smoke that could be seen for miles Thursday, officials said.

Priest killed in India

A priest was killed Wednesday in the southern Indian state of Karnataka where Christians have been targeted in violent attacks, the Vatican-based news agency Asianews said Thursday.

Two pilots die in Indian plane crash

An Indian military trainer plane crashed in southern India on Friday, killing its two pilots, a report said.

1,000 Afghan civilians killed this year: UN

Afghanistan's intensifying conflict killed more than 1,000 civilians in the first six months of 2009, an increase of nearly a quarter over the same period last year, the United Nations said yesterday.

Musharraf unlikely to face trial anytime soon

Pakistani lawyers called Thursday for Pervez Musharraf to face trial despite the country's top judge appearing to rule out initiating a case of treason against the former military ruler.

Myanmar should free Suu Kyi, says US

The United States on Thursday renewed its call for Myanmar's military regime to free democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi on the eve of a verdict in which she could receive five years in prison.

More US drones to target Taliban in Afghan war

The US military plans to use more drone aircraft to target Taliban militants in Afghanistan while focusing less on hunting down al-Qaeda figures, the Los Angeles Times reported on Thursday.

Presidents meet for security summit in Tajikistan

The presidents of Afghanistan, Pakistan, Russia and Tajikistan met in the Tajik capital Dushanbe Thursday for an unusual security summit amid growing concerns about Islamic militancy.

'No evidence' Laden in Pakistan

Pakistan's civilian government reiterated Thursday it had "no evidence" that al-Qaeda mastermind Osama bin Laden was in the nuclear-armed Muslim country, as Washington has charged.

Fauna play key role in circulating seas

Creatures large and small may play an unsuspectedly important role in the stirring of ocean waters, according to a study released Wednesday.

Omar Abdullah resumes office as Kashmir CM

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah resumed office yesterday after state Governor N N Vohra dismissed PDP's allegation that he was involved in the 2006 sex scandal.

China delivers warship to Pakistan

China yesterday delivered the first of four state-of-the-art frigates commissioned by nuclear-armed Pakistan from top ally Beijing, a naval spokesman said.

'British govt did not do enough for troops'

The British government did not do enough to support frontline troops in the first years of the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, the defence minister said in an interview published yesterday.

India wants climate change pact at Copenhagen

India insisted yesterday it wanted to reach a global agreement on fighting climate change at the upcoming UN summit in Copenhagen but reiterated its opposition to binding carbon emission cuts.

Arts & Entertainment

Samarjit’s folk fascination

Samarjit Roy Chowdhury is one of the prominent figures in the Bangladeshi art circuit and is known for the folk motifs in his works. The artist has carved a niche for himself with his hallmark style.

Leela Naidu: An icon of Indian cinema passes away

As the icon of beauty and acting prowess, she was not in the same league as Suchitra Sen or Madhubala but if there is a heroine who could come close to them, it was Leela Naidu, the yesteryear actress, who died in Mumbai last Tuesday at the age of 69 after a prolonged illness.

Folk music at Dhaka University

The two-day music festival arranged by recently opened Department of Music, Dhaka University ended on July 30 at the TSC auditorium. The second day's programme featured folk songs. Students and teachers of the department along with invited artistes, including Farida Parveen and Chandana Majumdar, performed different genres of folk songs at the programme.

Shibli, Nipa on Amar Ami tonight

Celebrated dancer duo Shamim Ara Nipa and Shibli Mohammed are the guests on tonight's "Amar Ami." The celebrity talk show will be aired tonight on Banglavision at 9:05 pm.

Bhabi: New serial on Ekushey TV

A new drama serial, "Bhabi," goes on air tonight on Ekushey TV. The first episode of the serial, directed by Debasish Barua, will be telecast at 9:30 pm.

Uttaran, Pabna celebrates first anniversary

Uttaran Shahitya Ashor, Pabna -- a local organisation for poets and recitors -- recently celebrated its first anniversary at its district headquarters. A recitation competition, discussion along with a reception and cultural programme were held at Pabna Zila Parishad auditorium premises on July 25.


Punish the predator

THE recent arrest of an Assistant Superintendent of Police, working in Rab, on charges of robbery baffles all citizens and undoubtedly puts the law enforcement apparatus in great shame. Such predatory acts by higher echelons of police, though not on a disturbing frequency shatter the much-desired credibility of the crime fighting organidation. The element of trust assumes prime significance when one hears exhortations of lawmen imploring members of public to become proactive partners in the crime prevention campaign.

Small hydropower generating units can ease power crisis

ENERGY plays an important role in accelerating economic growth inasmuch as it serves as an important element in providing food, shelter, healthcare facilities, safe water, sanitation, education and access to jobs to either an individual or group or the whole community. Sustainable human development, which means economic growth through equitable distribution of benefits, can only be ensured through the fulfillment of the energy needs of the nation. This brings into focus the interrelation between per capita energy consumption and per capita GDP, emphasising the fact that improvement in human status contributes to increase in per capita energy consumption.

Will Indo-Pak ties improve?

A recent and rare meeting between the prime ministers of arch rivals India and Pakistan on one hand raised prospects of a thaw in the bitter bilateral ties and on the other triggered anger and consternation back in New Delhi. Indian premier Dr. Manmohan Singh and his Pakistani counterpart Yusuf Raza Gilani on the sidelines of the just-concluded nonaligned summit in Egypt have pledged to cooperate with each other in combating terrorism and many saw the development as much-needed broad accord at the highest level to normalise the relationship.


That house next door…

Over the weekend the crows pecked through the wire screen of a kitchen window and as they flew in the flapping of their wings stirred up the stagnant time inside. Outside, it was a bright spring day. The sun was high in a clear blue sky, shining with proud lustre, and a cool breeze was blowing, soothing everything into a becalmed state.

English Barmaids and Slaves in Calcutta

Mani Sankar Mukherji, popularly known in Kolkata as simply 'Sankar,' has written many a book, fiction and nonfiction alike, with some bestsellers among them. One of the more popular of Bengali novelists, he hit it big from the very start when he started serializing a novel in Desh magazine in the 1950s, and has continued to write through the '60s down to the present day. While he has been dismissed by critics as a writer practiced at producing potboilers, that may be a little bit of a facile generalization. Sankar is of a generation of Bengali writers who began writing at a time when the 19th century European realist novel had a great hold on their imagination, and one can see the marks of that both in the sweep and careful characterization in their works. Not for that age the dessicated intellectualism that is our lot today - they liked Zola and Dickens. A novelist like Sankar (which is how the ordinary Bengali reader referred to him) took pride in the telling of a tale, following the dictates of plotting, characters and suspense, and in being responsive to readers' demands. Perhaps it tells something about his qualities in the above departments that two of his novels, Seemabaddha and Jana Aranya, were turned into movies by no less than Satyajit Ray, as 'Company Limited' and 'The Middleman' respectively. No doubt it was his sharp observation and intimate knowledge of Calcutta life at all levels that drew the legendary film director's attention. It was a knowledge gained first-hand by Sankar, who when he first came to Calcutta from Bongaon village (near the present Indo-Bangladesh border) before the Second World War, worked variously as a street hawker, a typewriter cleaner, a part-time school teacher and a clerk in a jute and gunny broking firm to earn a living - jobs that provided the material for the beginning pages of Chowringhee.

Love and Marriage

Don't go like horse and carriage
I know, I've on one and in the other

Women at Forty

Women at forty wake at dawn,
rising in the morning's dark
to pray, and bathe, and plait their hair
before beginning the day's work.

Star Health

Pre-hospital care at road traffic accidents

When world’s first road traffic death was recorded in 1896, everybody concerned at that time reported to have said, “This must never happen again”. More than a century later, 1.2 million people are killed on roads every year and up to 50 million more are injured.

Save the newborn

The death of a newborn is a very painful experience for the mothers who have taken the ordeal of pregnancy for 9 months or so. The causes of newborn death in Bangladesh are manifold like poverty, lack of medical check up, home delivery etc.

No gift is more precious than breastfeeding

World Breastfeeding Week is celebrated every year from 1 to 7 August in more than 120 countries to encourage breastfeeding and improve the health of babies around the world.

Chronic cough? Iron deficiency could be to blame

Instead of cough drops, some women may need to reach for an iron supplement to treat that pesky cough, Italian researchers said recently.

High-protein meals may help overweight burn fat

Higher-protein meals may help overweight and obese people burn more fat, the results of a small study suggest.

Fasting found to reduce chemo side-effects

A few days of fasting might help protect patients from some of the unpleasant and dangerous side-effects of cancer chemotherapy, researchers reported.

Strategic Issues

BRIC: A new bloc of fast-growing developing economies

BRIC or BRICs is an acronym that refers to the fast-growing developing economies of Brazil, Russia, India, and China. The acronym was first coined and prominently used by Goldman Sachs in 2001. Goldman Sachs argued that, since they are developing rapidly, by 2050 the combined economies of the BRICs could eclipse the combined economies of the current richest countries of the world. The four countries, combined, currently account for more than a quarter of the world's land area and more than 40% of the world's population.

Indo-Pak dialogue at the NAM Summit: Real progress?

ON 16 July at Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, during the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Summit, the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Pakistan Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani met for the second time after the Mumbai terrorist attacks. The informal yet important meeting was speculated to be a major step to ending the diplomatic deadlock that has plagued relations between India and Pakistan since 26/11. The 45-minute discussion between Singh and Gilani was preceded by several meetings between the foreign secretaries, and followed by an officially issued joint statement.

India joins nuclear submarine world

India launched its first nuclear-powered submarine July 26, officials said, underlining the military advances made by the rapidly developing nation.

S. Korea to upgrade military communication network

South Korea will begin developing a digital command-and-control and sensor-to-shooter battlefield system next year, the Defence Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) announced July 28.

Japan indicates end to era of declining defence spending

The latest annual economic policy guidelines of the Japanese government, led by the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), are likely to reverse the downward trend in ever-decreasing defence budgets since 2003 should the party remain in power beyond general elections that must be held by 19 October.

Indonesia and Malaysia seek to defuse maritime border dispute

The defence ministers of Indonesia and Malaysia met on 30 june to discuss ways of avoiding an escalation of tensions over the two countries' disputed maritime border off the east of Borneo.

Star Books Review

Those days of dark, intense fear

POET Nirmalendu Goon published a personal memoir-cum-history book on the liberation war entitled Atmakatha 1971 (a GEMCON literary award winner this year) from Banglaprakash in 2008. The narrative does not, however, cover the whole liberation war but only the events of ten days starting from the fateful night of March 25 (Operation Search Light) and ending on April 5, when Goon goes back to his village in Barhatta, Mymensingh, in the evening.

Clash of security paradigms

“…THE leading contributor to insecurity is the injustice inherent in the idea of development. As a leading development economist, Gerald Meier puts it, the idea of development was developed 'by colonial economics out of political expediency'.” These words fairly sum up the contents of Pakistan: Haunting Shadows of Human Security, a profound study of an enigmatic country, thoughtfully and logically edited by Jennifer Bennett. The book is an output of a three-year regional collaborative project on Human Security in South Asia, conducted by the Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies (BIIS). From a number of standpoints, including, crucially, the lines we began with, several of its findings are relevant to the experience of Bangladesh.

Observing nature and writing poetry

PUBLISHED from America, Madonna of the Rain is the debut collection of English poems by poet Rabiul Hasan, now living in America and working as a teacher of English at Southern University in the state of Louisiana. Poet Rabiul Hasan writes poetry in Bengali as well and has published two collections of poems in the language. He has three books of short stories in Bengali also. However, going through the poems of Madonna of the Rain, this reviewer has found that poet Rabiul Hasan is most brilliant when he paints scenes, mostly of nature. “Madonna of the Rain is a poetry collection for all seasons,” the publisher's blurb on the back page of the book notes. And indeed he is.

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