The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Wednesday, November 26, 2014


News of: Sunday, 23rd of August, 2009

Front Page

Madhupur forest merely exists

Adoption of wrong policies by the government and corruption by foresters have nearly eaten away the entire Madhupur forest, reducing the unique habitat of flora and fauna down to 8,000 acres from 45,000 acres.

Biman flights go haywire

Technical glitches grounded all five key aircraft of Biman Bangladesh Airlines Friday causing untold suffering to over 2,700 passengers at home and abroad.

Two schools shut amid swine flu fear

Two leading English medium schools in the city have shut down for an indefinite period yesterday amidst fears that the number of swine flu cases might increase in the country.

9 of three families kidnapped, rescued

Police yesterday rescued the nine members of three Hindu families kidnapped by a gang of criminals from a workshop in the city's Sutrapur area after eight hours of effort.

Essentials' prices spiralling up

Commerce Minister Faruk Khan yesterday said mobile courts would soon start vigilance to prevent businessmen from selling daily necessities at higher prices than the price mentioned on the hanging price list.

Saudi govt yet to allow job switch

Undocumented Bangladeshi migrant workers in Saudi Arabia are on the rise each day and many others are forced to return home despite having job offers, as the Kingdom still does not allow iqama (work permit) transfer for the Bangladeshis.

Chirping village

Only 10 years ago there was no chirping and gathering of birds in Bhatina village under Dinajpur sadar upazila. With a unique initiative by a bird lover, the village is now a safe haven for thousands of birds chirping round the day.

Finance says no to industrial police

The finance ministry has again turned down a home ministry proposal for formation of an industrial police force, saying that continued use of Bangladesh Ansar and Village Defence Party (VDP) or strengthening of local police stations will suffice.

Ramadan starts today

The holy month of Ramadan begins today amidst religious fervour with the devout Muslims observing dawn-to-dusk fast for self-purification and divine blessings.

Bangladeshi whizkid on the block

First-ever Bangladeshi meta-search engine SearchW3.net, created by a 13-year-old kid, has been launched to help Internet users find local contents and applications easily on the Web.

Tk 5 lakh looted from gas station

A gang of armed muggers looted over Tk 5 lakh from a CNG refuelling station in the capital's Badda area yesterday.

TCB sale yet to influence market

The sale of basic commodities by the Trading Corporation of Bangladesh (TCB) in the city could not make any positive impact on their prices due to scanty supply against the increased demand for such items on the eve of Ramadan.

Another BDR man dies

Another member of Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) died yesterday, raising the death toll of BDR jawans to 40 since the February mutiny.

Clean Street starts today to tackle jam

Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) formally kicks off operation 'Clean Street' today to rid the city-dwellers of severe traffic jams during Ramadan by chasing unfit and unlicensed vehicles off the street.

PM's step sought to end Biman crisis

Bangladesh Airline Pilots Association yesterday called for Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's intervention to solve the problems confronting Biman, the national flag carrier.

Afghan vote not universally free

Observers yesterday highlighted cases of fraud in Afghanistan's elections and said voting was not universally free due to violence and intimidation as speculation mounted about a possible run-off.

3km highway goes under water

Traffic movement on Dhaka-Dinajpur highway was suspended yesterday afternoon as 3km of the road went under knee-deep water.

Dhaka not ready to recognise Kosovo yet

Bangladesh does not perceive it necessary now to recognise Kosovo as an independent Balkan state as Foreign Secretary Mijarul Quayes yesterday indicated that Dhaka weighs its geopolitical and other consequences.

Outlaw killed in 'encounter' with police

A regional leader of outlawed Janajuddho, a faction of Purbo Banglar Communist Party (PBCL-ML), was killed in an 'encounter' between police and his cohorts at Jagannathpur village of Daulatpur upazila in the district yesterday.

DU observes Black Day today

Teachers and students of the Dhaka University are set to observe 'University Black Day' today to mark the atrocities by law enforcement agencies two years ago.

Ershad's adopted son reported missing

An adopted son of Jatiya Party Chairman HM Ershad has remained missing for about a month.

India hands Pakistan fresh Mumbai info

India on Friday handed fresh information on last year's bloody attacks in Mumbai to Pakistan's top diplomat in New Delhi, officials and a report said.

Flu, financial worries overshadow Muslim holiday

Muslims entered the fasting and feasting month of Ramadan on Saturday with swine flu and the economic downturn adding to security fears in several Islamic countries in dampening the mood.

Editorial

High prices during Ramadan

BARELY a day after the commerce minister announced a fixing of the prices of essentials in the market, the self-same prices shot up everywhere in the city. That says something about the stark realities citizens are faced with even as Ramadan begins today. Indeed, every experience of Ramadan for a number of years has been excruciating for people because of the abnormal rise in prices they have been put through due to a mismatch between demand and supply. However, this year the supply side has been stronger and there has been no dearth of commodities in the market. That being the case, why this rise in prices? In the first place, there is the extortion traders are subjected to as they carry their goods to their ultimate destination. In the second, there is the arbitrary fixing of prices by retail shopkeepers. Obviously, these realities raise quite a few serious questions that call for equally serious and effective answers. And they do because at this stage there is hardly any way for anyone to point the way out for citizens.

Phasing out unfit vehicles

IT seems the government is resolute and appears to mean business with its latest initiative to bring order in city traffic. It has decided to drive out road unworthy, unlicensed and old vehicles from the streets. But it is a tall order given their swarming the city after each short-lived, failed attempt to flush them out.

Delineating public representatives' roles

THE Members of Parliament (MPs) in a democracy are elected mainly for framing laws in parliament as well as bringing the various problems of their constituency to the notice of the government for redress. The problems may relate to the development of the area the MP in question represents or other issues that affects the lives of the electorate. In any advanced democracy such as in the United Kingdom (UK), an MP looks after such problems of the electorate. In this connection, tax related issues, for example, inland revenue, customs, excise, health service, social security issues including pension or insurance, immigration, grants for schools and so on come within the purview of an MP's areas of concern. It is important to note that in all these cases, the problems to be addressed should be within the jurisdiction of the central government, for the MP will not interfere with the issues addressed by the local government.

The braveheart called Bangabandhu

THE aggravated tragedy for the Bangladeshi society is that even thirty-four years after the deplorable assassination of the iconic leader of our national emancipation, there are ludicrous and demeaning efforts to compare Bangabandhu with others who perhaps, at best, will find mention in the footnotes of our history.

Will it take a war to focus on Swat's problems?

THERE is a foolproof way of gauging mainstream America's interest in the rest of the world; through the New York Times crossword puzzle. On August 11, the clue for 17-Across (three letters) was "Islamabad's land: Abbr." The discovery of Pakistan has begun. India is an older, but static and occasional, story glimpsed occasionally through "Agra," routed either via the Taj Mahal or Slumdog Millionaire. Wondrously, Nehru still remains on the iconic shortlist, but the presence is fading.

Sports

PM calls cricketers 'victorious tigers'

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday hailed the triumphant Bangladesh cricket team as 'victorious tigers' and declared a cash award of Tk 3 lakh for its members for creating history by winning the Test and one-day series in West Indies last month.

Maruful gets his wishes

Mohammedan Sporting Club finally decided to launch their pre-season preparation on Sunday, burying a hatchet with coach Maruful Haq and verbally confirming that they would compete in the Federation Cup when it gets underway on September 10.

Eng build big lead

Jonathan Trott was closing in on a century on his Test debut as England continued to press for an Ashes-clinching win in the fifth and final Test against Australia at the Oval on Saturday.

SL post easy win

An illness-ravaged New Zealand were bamboozled in the face of pace and spin as Sri Lanka cruised to a 202-run victory in the first Test on Saturday to lead the two-match series.

'Scrap Champs Trophy'

Matthew Hayden, the former Australia opener, has suggested scrapping the Champions Trophy and creating a two-month window for the IPL in order to revive spectator interest in the game.

Ayub shines in vain

Marshal Ayub continued his good form with the bat but the captain's effort was not good enough as the visiting GP-BCB National Cricket Academy (NCA) went down to Standard Bank National Cricket Academy of South Africa (SBNCA) by four-wickets in the second one-dayer at Laudium, Pretoria on Friday.

Reefat takes solo lead

Grand Master Reefat Bin Sattar took solo lead with maximum three points at the end of the third round of the 9th United Insurance & United Leasing Grandmasters Chess tournament at the National Sports Council conference-room yesterday.

Aminul could be out for a month

Aminul Haq, the goalkeeper of Mohammedan Sporting Club, is likely to miss the early stage matches of the Federation Cup as he underwent a minor surgery in his back in India yesterday.

Bangladesh may not participate

The Bangladesh Football Federation is seemingly in hesitation to send their Under-16 squad to the AFC U-16 Championship Qualifiers in the Philippines after failing to earn the right of hosting the Group E qualifiers in Chittagong.

Kenyan one-two in men's marathon

Abel Kirui led compatriot Emmanuel Mutai to a Kenyan one-two in the men's marathon at the World Athletics Championships here on Saturday.

Argentina recall Coloccini

Argentina coach Diego Maradona named 19 overseas players on Friday for next month's World Cup qualifiers against Brazil and Paraguay.

Serena storms into semis

Second-seeded Serena Williams stormed into the semifinals of the two million-dollar WTA Rogers Cup Friday with a 6-3, 6-2 victory over Lucie Safarova.

Joshi probable Biyanibazar coach

Jasimuddin Ahmed Joshi is tipped to become the coach of newcomers Biyanibazar Sporting Club of Sylhet in the upcoming season.

Football turns violent

A controversial ruling of goal by a referee in a football match in Manikganj resulted in violent clashes between the supporters of the two teams that left at least 60 injured, 10 of them seriously on Friday.

Jadeja blames players

Ajay Jadeja, the former India batsman and captain of Delhi for two seasons, has backed Virender Sehwag in his criticism of the state's cricket administration but said players are to blame for the dismal situation that exists today.

2 teams to be demoted in B. League

The B. League Committee of the Bangladesh Football Federation yesterday backtracked on their decision to relegate three teams in the professional football league.

Dhaka Club's sports day

To mark the 98th founding anniversary, the Dhaka Club on Thursday organised a sports event consisting of billiards and snooker, squash, and tennis amid fun and festivity on Thursday.

'Juve worries Jose'

Juventus coach Ciro Ferrara believes Inter Milan counterpart Jose Mourinho is worried ahead of the new Serie A season, which kicked-off on Saturday.

Carlo learned a lot

Carlo Ancelotti admits he has learned a lot about English football during the first few days of the Premier League campaign.

Big guns face off

Two-time winner Roger Federer and reigning champion Andy Murray lined up a top-two semifinal showdown at the Cincinnati Masters on Friday.

Wenger slams Spanish

Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger on Friday hit out at the "political" nature of Spanish clubs amid attempts by Barcelona to lure their former youth star Cesc Fabregas back to the Nou Camp.

L'pool sign Kyrgiakos

Liverpool completed the signing of Greek international Sotirios Kyrgiakos on Friday in a deal which will help ease the early season defensive worries for coach Rafael Benitez.

Chamakh snubs Hammers

Bordeaux's highly-rated Moroccan striker Marouane Chamakh has snubbed English Premier League suitors West Ham to stay with the French champions.

Sneijder keen on Real stay

Dutch midfielder Wesley Sneijder says he wants to stay at Real Madrid, which is seeking to offload him to Inter Milan, Spanish sports paper AS said Friday.

No room for Ramadan

Paris Saint Germain coach Antoine Kombouare has said he will not select any players for match days who decide to respect the holy Muslim observance of Ramadan.

Vieira staying at Inter

French international midfielder Patrick Vieira has ruled out a return to Arsenal saying he has decided to stay for another year in Italy with Inter Milan.

Business

Gloom thickens over industrial sector

The troubled industrial sector may run into further setbacks this year as the energy situation will not show signs of immediate improvement, bankers and industrialists said yesterday.

Yunus Centre opens at Thailand's AIT

Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus has launched Yunus Centre at the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT) in Thailand, the first of its kind outside Bangladesh.

Mobile operators poised for Eid festivity

Some mobile operators have introduced lucrative promotions targeting Ramadan and the Eid to rope in more customers.

India grants transit facility to Nepal

As Nepalese Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal yesterday wrapped up a five-day visit to India, New Delhi has decided to grant transit facility to Kathmandu at an Indian port for enhancing the Himalayan nation's foreign trade and grant Rs 660 crore for a cross-border road project.

PRAN signs $3.5m export deal with Angola

PRAN Export Ltd, a concern of PRAN-RFL Group, will export $3.5 million worth of products to Angola, the company said in a statement yesterday.

Shipbuilding industry faces setbacks

A short supply of gas and electricity is among the major hindrances to development of the country's shipbuilding industry although it has already attracted buyers far from Europe, according to a report.

Major public offerings to expand market

Market capitalisation at Dhaka bourse will double in the next three to five years, led by some major public offerings, including that of Grameenphone, said a market analyst.

Int'l trade show kicks off tomorrow

In a bid to identify and promote deserving women entrepreneurs of the country and beyond, a six-day international trade show will begin in Dhaka tomorrow, targeting the Eid.

India to fight drought losses with imports

With drought fears turning real and food prices going through the roof, India has moved into crisis management mode by lining up imports of food grains and agriculture commodities to meet demand-supply gap created by lower production.

Ramadan braces for glum mood

Muslims in parts of the world entered the month of Ramadan on Saturday with swine flu and the economic downturn adding to the security fears that plague several Islamic countries in dampening the mood.

Labour unrest at CEPZ

Workers of a knitting industry at the Chittagong Export Processing Zone (CEPZ) staged demonstration here yesterday demanding immediate payment of arrear salary and overtime allowances and protesting against curtailing some facilities.

Bernanke upbeat on global recovery prospects

In his clearest signal yet that the global recession will soon be over, US Federal Reserve chief Ben Bernanke said Friday that prospects for growth "appear good" despite financial market strains.

Rice at fair prices for knit workers

Knitwear manufacturers have signed an agreement with the food ministry to provide rice at cheaper prices for their workers.

Walton products to enter KL

RB Group of Companies Ltd, a leading electrical, electronics and automobile manufacturing and marketing company in Bangladesh, will export its Walton brand refrigerators and motorcycles to Malaysia, said a press release yesterday.

Stocks rise on mutual funds' gain

Mutual funds that shone bright last week jumped 9.5 percent despite a sharp fall in prices on the last trading day.

Twitter out to make money from businesses

Micro-blogging sensation Twitter says it is making progress on ways to pump cash from the free service.

Oil spikes to 2009 peak

World oil prices surged this week to the highest level so far this year as investor sentiment was driven by tumbling American crude reserves, the weak dollar and encouraging economic data.

12 million jobseekers in China won't find work

As many as 12 million people in China who are looking for jobs will not be able to find employment this year, an official newspaper reported Saturday.

Berlin regrets GM indecision on Opel

Germany's economy minister said Saturday he regretted that General Motors' board had failed to take a decision on a deal covering European operations, including ailing German unit Opel, a report said.

US workplace suicides jump 28pc

The financial meltdown is taking its toll on the workplace, where the US Labor Department found a record 28 percent rise in suicide rates last year amid widespread layoffs and overall belt-tightening.

Mexican president cuts his pay amid recession

Mexican President Felipe Calderon on Friday signed a decree to cut his own pay and that of top government officials by 10 percent.

Weekly Currency Roundup

August 16th August 20th, 2009

Metropolitan

Enact law to preserve mineral resources

Speakers at a roundtable yesterday demanded the government enact a law to preserve the country's mineral resources with a view to protecting the biodiversity, environment, food and agriculture from catastrophes.

Govt urged to check price hike of essentials during Ramadan'

Different political parties yesterday urged the government to rein in the price hike of essentials, keep the law and order situation stable and ensure adequate supply of electricity, gas and water in the holy month of Ramadan.

Anomalies alleged in shop allotment

Dhaka City Corporation (DCC) is set to hold a lottery for allotment of shops at Captan Bazar Commercial Complex today resorting to corruption and politicisation, alleged the business leaders of a hawkers' market at a press conference yesterday.

Govt trying to implicate BNP men

BNP Secretary General Khandakar Delwar Hossain yesterday said the government is trying to implicate his party leaders and workers in August 21 grenade attack on Awami League rally in the city four years ago.

CHT peace agreement to be implemented in phases

Deputy Leader of the House Syeda Sajeda Chowdhury yesterday reaffirmed the government's determination to implement the CHT Peace Accord in phases, allaying security concerns following the withdrawal of temporary army camps from the hill districts.

Fresh probe into Aug 20-22 DU unrest demanded

The teachers and students of Dhaka University (DU), who were tortured by the law enforcement agencies in connection with the August 20-22 student unrest in 2007 on the campus, demanded reinvestigation into the incident and trial for injustice which were done to them.

Constitutional change a must to establish secularism

Deputy Speaker Col (retd) Shawkat Ali at a seminar yesterday said recognition of a specific religion as 'state religion' means undermining the other religions existing in Bangladesh.

DU students protest atrocities

Different student organisations staged demonstrations on the Dhaka University (DU) campus yesterday protesting atrocities of the law enforcing agencies on teachers and students during student unrest on the campus in August 2007.

Train derails in Gazipur

A freight train derailed at South Outer Signal adjacent to Gazipur Railway Junction yesterday disrupting rail communications on Dhaka-Mymensingh and Dhaka-Rajshahi routes.

Call to end gender disparity to build healthy nation

Speakers at a discussion yesterday stressed the need to end gender discrimination to build a healthy nation as well as to move it forward.

Seminar on liver transplant held

Apollo Hospitals Dhaka organised a seminar on "Liver transplant" at its auditorium in the city on August 19, says a press release.

GP sales representative robbed of Tk 1.10 lakh

Muggers snatched away Tk 1.10 lakh from a sales representative of GrameenPhone at Fatulla in Narayanganj yesterday.

'Stop harassing journos'

Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ) and Dhaka Union of Journalists (DUJ) have expressed grave concern over harassment and repression on journalists at the state-run news agency Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS).

Steps to be taken for dev of homeopathy

Health Adviser to Prime Minister Syed Modasser Ali yesterday said the government would take appropriate steps for the development of homeopathy in the country, says a press release.

3 students injured in BCL-JCD clash

Three students were injured in a clash between leaders and activists of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) and Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) at Shamsunnahar Hall of Dhaka University (DU) yesterday.

Obama greets Muslims on Ramadan

US President Barack Obama greeted the Muslim communities in the United States and around the world on the occasion of holy month of Ramadan, according to a message received here yesterday.

'Introduce rationing for RMG workers during Ramadan'

Garment workers yesterday urged the government to deploy Rab members in the market to contain the price of essentials since it witnessed a sharp rise in both wholesale and retail markets on the eve of the month of Ramadan.

DU finance dept chair confined

The students of 10th and 11th batches of Finance department at Dhaka University yesterday confined their chairman for two hours in his office, demanding replacement of their grading system with the newly proposed one introduced by the University Grants Commission.

Programme to mark CRP's 30th founding anniversary

Centre for Rehabilitation of the Paralysed (CRP) organised a get-together for high officials of government and autonomous organisations at its head office at Savar on Thursday as part of its programmes to mark its 30th founding anniversary, says a press release.

Public health sector to be reorganised

Health Minister AFM Ruhal Haque yesterday said public health sector would have to be reorganised to strengthen the hand of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in building digital Bangladesh, says a press release.

NU results published

The results of different subjects under second year honours examinations 2007 of National University have been published yesterday, says a press release.

277 more AC (land) to be appointed

The government is trying to make the country's land management system vibrant through appointing 277 more assistant commissioners (AC) (land), said prime minister's Adviser on Establishment HT Imam yesterday.

Five criminals held with arms

Members of Rapid Action Battalion (Rab-4) arrested five criminals and recovered three firearms at Amin Bazar in Savar yesterday.

Matin laid to rest

Liberation War hero Brig Gen (retd) MA Matin, Bir Protik was laid to rest with military honour at Banani army graveyard in the city yesterday.

3 injured in N'ganj godown explosion

Three people were injured in an explosion at a sugar godown at Nitaiganj in Narayanganj on Friday night.

National

Thousands marooned as flood situation worsens

With inundation of fresh areas, the flood situation deteriorated in north and northeastern districts yesterday, marooning thousands of people.

150 JCD men sued for violence, vandalism

Sylhet Kotwali police has filed a case against 150 Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) men including 51 named ones on charge of vandalising vehicles and assaulting policemen during the student organisation's factional clashes on Friday night.

Rescue Tanmoy in 7 days

Several hundred people from all walks of life yesterday morning formed a human chain and held a rally in front of Jnaadayinee High School at Mujib Road in the town demanding steps to rescue abducted schoolboy Sampad Kumar Sheel alias Tanmoy and arrest and punishment to the culprits.

Luck smiles on Cox's Bazar fishermen

Cox's Bazar coast now sees netting of good amount of hilsa, much to the happiness of around 80,000 fishermen who had remained virtually jobless during the last one month.

'Repression day' at RU

Teachers and students of Rajshahi University yesterday urged the government to conduct proper investigation into the law enforcers' atrocities during the campus unrest on August 22-23 in 2007.

2 more bodies recovered

Bodies of local Awami League (AL) leader Barek Farazi, 70, and Rajib, 8, were recovered yesterday from the Arial Kha River where a trawler carrying a bridal party sank on Wednesday.

Panchhari hartal call 'foiled'

The hartal called yesterday in Panchhari upazila (UZ) jointly by Parbatya Bangali Chhatra Parishad (PBCP) and Samo Adhikar Andolon (SAA) protesting the recent killing after rape of a woman went unheeded.

Principal's office room ransacked

Students of Dinajpur Polytechnic Institute yesterday went on rampage and ransacked several rooms including the principal's room as the authorities suspended activities of a student organisation allegedly without giving any prior notice.

Letters

Deprived farmers

Last month when I was coming back to Dhaka from Sylhet by a Shohag Poribahan bus, it stopped at a place in Brahmanbaria to facilitate passengers offer Jummah prayer as it was Friday.

Dr. Yunus

Prof Yunus is our pride. He has got America's highest civilian award. It is good news for any Bangladeshi. The success of Prof Yunus is sufficient to change the image of our nation. This incident would definitely encourage many other Bangladeshis to work for the betterment of the country. Yunus won the hearts of millions of Bangladeshis through his hard work and right thought. President Barrack Obama rightly called Yunus, “An agent of change.”

Neglected place

Last weekend I paid a visit to a place that represent our glorious history of 1971.The place is Rayerbazar Boddhobhumi, the place where intellectuals were brutally killed in 1971 by coward Pakistani soldiers. To honour the heroes the government has built a memorial on the bank of a river. The shape of the memorial resembles a mountain having a window on chest. With ceramic brick construction, it seems wearing a blood gown. It carries great significance along with its endless beauty. When the sun sets, it seems to see the martyrs through the window.

USA and others

The USA and the West always talk about democracy. They more or less practice this theory in their own territory. They even try to teach us democracy when they find any occasion. But do they believe in democracy from their core of mind? They often behave in most undemocratic ways with the underdeveloped countries.

Educational institutions

We have become a rough and rude people. There is impoliteness, harshness, violence and brutality everywhere. A look at our daily life or at any newspaper on any day will confirm this. If we are satisfied with the way we are, there is nothing more to say about it. However, if we feel that we need and want to change our ways, we have to think of the means of bringing about the change. I think our education can and must play a crucial role in this matter.

BCFCC, the new victim!

Who can tell me how & why the name of the popular centre of meetings & fairs got a new name? Was it necessary at all? Do we not cut a sorry figure to the contributor! It was built by our good friends 'the Chinese' and as I knew so long it was a total package of a gift from one of our best friendly countries and their people. If the ruling govt. wanted to name another landmark after it's founder, no one would have objected. In fact we need several such venues of international standard.

Our priorities

What is the national priority at this moment? If we go by the political language the 1st point will be poverty elimination, 2nd place will be taken by "Food for all" 3rd will be "education for all, 4th will be housing for all, 5th will be electricity for all etc. But to our surprise, none of the above issues are addressed properly, this is probably due to the fact that after the government took over the responsibility of serving the people (though they say assuming power) the above points are often issued and addressed during seminars and symposiums and most disappointingly at the public meetings. In reality what percentage of the government's success has actually taken place is what we like to know through the media. All the past governments hardly bothered to publish any documents and since a lot is expected from this government due to their huge majority and pre-election commitments, we certainly would like to see a report rather than been informed in public meetings what or how much they have achieved in the last 07 months form their oath taking.

Asian Highway

It is not a matter of preference at all. It is a matter of reality that AH enters from India crossing the western border of our country. I think it is also not a matter of preference, rather it is pragmatic that AH enters Myanmar, the only other common boarder country of Bangladesh. Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Thailand are the member countries of BIMST-EC which has further development plan for AH network. ESCAP, the patronizing organization of AH network, prioritised capital-to-capital links for international transport.

British troops in Afghanistan

The British General David Richards has recently revealed the true motive behind their presence in Afghanistan. He told The Times that British soldiers would remain in Afghanistan for the next 40 years (The Daily Star: 09.08.09).

TIB's role

As a senior citizen, I found it embarrassing to find the leader of the House (JS) criticising the role and activities of the TIB, on the closing day of the recent session.

Bangabandhu

Like millions of Bangladeshis the world over, I have missed him immensely since that day - August 15, 1975.

Dhaka-NY flight

Having read the recent article in the Financial Express dated 14th August about Biman's resumption of its Dhaka-New York flights, I have a few comments to make and some questions to ask publicly to the CEO of Bangladesh's national flag carrier. Firstly, as a north-America resident of Bangladeshi roots I am delighted to hear the news because it can cut my journey by as much as 40%. Secondly as a well-wisher of the ailing carrier, I look forward to this becoming a profitable route. Thirdly, I question why the flight has to make a stop on-route to Dhaka from New York based on both technical and business reasons.

Security issue

On last 6 July, the cabinet approved a draft law to ensure security of the family members of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman with immediate effect. This step has been rejected by most of the people as two online polls run by newspapers show. The prime minister of Bangladesh gets water tight security ex officio, so there is no need to change or enact any law in this regard. Furthermore, it seems inappropriate when overall public security is creaking . Acid throwing, extortion and murder are common incidents nowadays, even, innocent people are being killed in broad daylight.

International

BJP battles over future

Crushed in general elections in May, India's opposition Hindu nationalists now seem embroiled in a bruising ideological squabble that has already resulted in the expulsion of one senior party leader.

Pak Taliban planned to target PM, others

The banned Pakistani Taliban, against whom the security forces are engaged in a major offensive in the country's restive northwest, had planned to target Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani and other dignitaries, an intelligence report said yesterday.

Pakistan loses $1.8b to corruption

Pakistan is estimated to have lost a staggering Rs.150 billion ($1.8 billion) thanks to the immunity granted to politicians, bureaucrats and senior military officers charged with corruption and the scrapping of the country's corruption watchdog, a media report said Saturday.

Steps being taken to initiate talks with Mullah Omar

Pakistan Muslim League-Quaid (PML-Q) Secretary General Mushahid Hussain has said steps are being taken to initiate talks with the Taliban chief Mullah Omar.

US fears rifts if Afghan presidential vote heads for runoff

Western officials here have expressed relief that many Afghans defied Taliban threats of reprisals and came out to vote, but they were clearly concerned on Friday that a second round of voting could extend the paralysis of a government that already barely functions and deepen ethnic tensions, in the worst case, to the point of a north-south civil war.

No personal grudge against Musharraf but trial a 'must'

Former Pakistan prime minister Nawaz Sharif has said his party, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N), had no personal grudge against former President General Pervez Musharraf, but that it was a unanimous call of the country to try the former general under Article 6 for disregarding the Constitution.

Hakeemullah named new Pak Taliban chief

The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has declared Hakeemullah Mehsud as the successor to Baitullah Mehsud.

Strike over Indian PM's remark shuts Kashmir

Separatists called a one-day strike Saturday in revolt-hit Indian Kashmir to protest against a statement by Premier Manmohan Singh that there was "no place for separatist thought" in the region.

Book reveals India's 'hidden hand' in Lankan war

India played a critical, albeit covert, role in the success of Sri Lanka's war against the Tamil Tigers, with the Indian Navy providing vital intelligence in locating and destroying at least a dozen LTTE rogue vessels laden with arms, says the first such detailed account of the operation.

Death toll from US missile strike increases to 21

Nine more bodies were pulled from the rubble of houses hit by a suspected US missile strike targeting a Taliban commander in northwestern Pakistan, bringing the total number of dead to 21 yesterday.

Drug agents raid Beverly Hills pharmacy in Jackson probe

US federal drug agents on Friday raided a Beverly Hills pharmacy as part of an ongoing investigation into Michael Jackson's death two months ago.

Egyptian traders turn Obama into a date!

Egyptian grocers have named the finest variety of dates for the month of Ramadan after US President Barack Obama because of his popularity since his visit to the predominately Muslim nation last June.

Iranian clerics object to women ministers

Iran's conservative clerics have objected to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's decision to include three women in his new cabinet, a report said on Saturday, dealing a blow to the hardliner's bid to secure parliament's nod for his ministerial line-up.

Gaddafi welcomes home Lockerbie bomber

Libyan leader Muammer Gaddafi welcomed home the only man convicted of the 1988 Lockerbie bombing that killed 270 people with a hug and praised Scotland for releasing him.

Iraqi security worsening

Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari yesterday said Iraq will witness more deadly attacks in coming months because security is deteriorating due to collusion between security forces and insurgents.

CIA used mock execution to get info from Qaeda

US Central Intelligence Agency interrogators used a handgun and an electric drill to try to frighten a captured al-Qaeda commander into giving up information, The Washington Post reported yesterday.

Obama okay with single term if reaches goals

US President Barack Obama would be fine with serving only one term if he achieves some of his most audacious goals, like his embattled health care overhaul, spokesman Robert Gibbs said Friday.

US army officer says sorry for Vietnam killing

After more than 40 years, the former US army officer found guilty of organising mass killings in the Vietnamese community of My Lai during the war has made a public apology.

Koreas hold high-level talks after 2-yr lull

Top South and North Korean officials in charge of inter-Korean relations held talks Saturday for the first time in nearly two years amid a series of conciliatory moves by North Korea after months of tensions on the divided peninsula.

Swine flu vaccines found safe in early trials

Early indications are a new swine flu vaccine is safe and is on track to be made available to the public by mid-October, US health officials said Friday.

Obama to visit Beijing in Nov

US President Barack Obama will make his first presidential visit to China in November, in an effort to bring a new impetus to the key bilateral relation, America's new ambassador to China said Saturday.

Six killed in Thai south

A bomb killed three security volunteers in Thailand's south while militants shot dead three Muslim civilians as the region entered the holy month of Ramadan, police said yesterday.

Arts & Entertainment

Selim Al Deen remembrance celebration draws to a close

The five-day Selim Al Deen birth anniversary celebration programme ended at the Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) on August 21. Dhaka Theatre and BSA jointly arranged the festival, which featured a theatre festival, film screening, music, dance, recitation, seminar and an exhibition. On the last day, two plays--written by Al Deen-- were staged. Dhaka Theatre staged its latest production "Dhaboman" at the National Theatre Hall and BSA staged a new play, "Putra," at the Studio Theatre Hall.

A day for young ones

Amader Moto Amrao Pari, an exhibition featuring art works of young children, is currently on at Gallery Nittyaupahar, Aziz Cooperative super market, Shahbagh.

Great poet of his time

On August 21, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy and Jiyonkathi arranged a special programme at the Dance and Music Centre, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy to observe the birth centenary of poet Bishnu Dey (1909-1982).

Promoting cultural activism in Pabna

A discussion and recitation programme was held at Pabna Gonoshilpi Shangshtha premises recently. Patha Shahitta Sangshad (PSS), a local institution that focuses on recitation, organised the programme to orient the younger generation with art and culture. A group of young people vowed to engage themselves in the field of art and culture to foster a creative new generation. Cultural activists from different organisations participated in the programme.

A rare collection of photographic documents

The High Commission of India in Dhaka has organised a photo exhibition on the Liberation War.

Cultural programme for community- based health workers

Local artistes put up Chakma, Marma, Tripura and Bengali dances while songs, poetry recitations and one short play were staged at the Mohazonpara Chandonpati Community Club recently. The show was organised to motivate community- based health workers who operate in remote areas under eight upazilas in Khagrachhari district.

Video appears in paper magazines

The first-ever video advertisement will be published in a traditional paper magazine in September.

OP-ED

Sawm and Ramadhan

FASTING, or sawm, during the sacred month of Ramadhan is obligatory for every adult Muslim, provided that he or she is in full possession of his or her faculties. It is one of the five pillars of Islam. The holy Prophet (pbuh) said: "Islam is built on five pillars: the shahada (profession of faith that there is no God but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah), salat (prayers), zakat (alms-tax), sawm (fast) of Ramdhan and hajj (pilgrimage)."

Transformation of English

SOME months back a friend from Mumbai sent me an e-mail written in internet jargon. The mail ended with PCM-BY-TC.

The Mahatma of Barisal

SOME people leave behind footprints in the sands of time, which act like a beacon for generations to come inspiring them for their motherland's intellectual, material and spiritual progress.



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