The Daily Star

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Friday, August 22, 2014


News of: Tuesday, 1st of September, 2009

Front Page

Govt to stagger work hours to fix gridlocks

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday directed the authorities to stagger work hours for offices, educational institutions and businesses to ease traffic pressure on the city roads.

Govt confirms first swine flu death

The government yesterday confirmed the first death from swine flu and 14 fresh cases. Many hospitals in the capital seemed ill prepared to tackle swine flu patients while the doctors and nurses of some seemed reluctant to take even the basic precautionary measures.

BDR to beef up CHT deployment

Bangladesh Rifles will enhance its presence in the Chittagong Hill Tracts region by increasing both the numbers of BDR personnel and border outposts (BOP) there.

Criminals open fire for toll

Criminals yesterday opened fire on a jewellery shop at Tantibazar in the city's Kotwali area to realise toll and threatened to kill its owner.

3 dead officials blamed for graft

An unduly delayed government investigation pointed finger at three deceased power officials, including a former chairman of Power Development Board, for overspending Tk 131 crore in a power sector rehabilitation project violating rules and without proper approval.

Deer trouble in Nijhum Dwip

The Wildlife Advisory Board of the government has suggested downsizing the deer population at Nijhum Dwip to two-thirds as their number in the sanctuary has risen disproportionately to over 15,000 considering the island's landscape.

Special drives leave a lot to be desired

Special drives of Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) and Bangladesh Road Transport Authority (BRTA) along with the communications ministry's 'coordinating' move to curb traffic jam in the capital, produced nothing tangible yet for frustrated commuters.

Melting Himalayas concern for millions

The glaciers of the Himalayas are melting faster than anywhere else changing its ecosystem and causing grave concerns for the region, said the speakers at the South Asian Climate Change Conference in Kathmandu, Nepal.

Anthrax spreads from diseased cow

Anthrax is suspected to have transmitted to humans from a diseased cow in a Pabna village recently affecting at least 26 people, officials in Dhaka and Pabna said.

Pabna students go on rampage

Students of Pabna Edward College went on the rampage following death of a fellow student in a road accident yesterday and damaged at least 40 vehicles.

BNP's founding anniversary today

BNP celebrates its 31st founding anniversary today. On this very day in 1978, late president Ziaur Rahman founded BNP.

Tackle poverty, climate change simultaneously

Visiting UK ministers Douglas Alexander and Ed Miliband yesterday said the challenges of poverty alleviation and climate change must be tackled simultaneously as the problems are interrelated and cannot be addressed one without the other.

Abortion at wrong hands ends her life

A woman died yesterday after undergoing an 'operation' for menstrual regulations (MR) for abortion under a family planning visitor at the Central Police Hospital in Rajarbagh in the capital.

Govt hikes minimum prices of land

New land prices, two and a half to four times higher than before, go into effect today in city corporation and municipality areas of the country.

Clarification

Biman Bangladesh Airlines Ltd has given a clarification on The Daily Star news headlined "UN staff asked to skip Biman" published on August 30.

Prof Yunus invited to address Lok Sabha

Nobel laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus has been invited to deliver the second Prof Hiren Mukherjee Memorial Annual Parliamentary Lecture in Indian Parliament during its winter session this year.

AL lawmaker Shafiqul asked to explain his eligibility

The Election Commission (EC) yesterday issued a notice upon ruling Awami League (AL) lawmaker Shafiqul Azam Khan, asking him to explain within 10 days why his parliament membership should not be cancelled on grounds of ineligibility.

Japan PM-elect busy picking cabinet choices

Japan's Democratic Party yesterday began talks on forming a new government, faced with the challenge of reviving the struggling economy and reshaping ties with key allies after its crushing election win.

45militants killed in Swat gunbattles

Pakistani soldiers killed at least 45 Taliban militants in scattered gunbattles across the northwestern Swat Valley after a suicide bombing on a police station killed 17 cadets, the army said yesterday.

IGP suggests spl policing in southwest

Inspector General of Police (IGP) Nur Mohammad yesterday spelt out 'special policing' in outlaw-infested southwestern region to maintain law and order.

Nuke talks resumption delayed

The 65 states in the Conference on Disarmament have failed to agree on how to move ahead with full nuclear arms talks, effectively delaying them until 2010, the conference president said yesterday.

BSF kills 2

Indian Border Security Force (BSF) killed two Bangladeshi nationals at Meherpur and Benapole on Sunday and yesterday.

Editorial

Saga of judges' sacking

The order of sacking of two judges last month, and rescinding it very soon after it was issued, highlights the slipshod manner that the administration had adopted in handling the matter, not to speak of its predilection for disregarding procedures and rules laid down for the purpose. It is just as well that the mistake was realised and corrective measures taken just in time which helped avoid an awkward situation and the legal embarrassment that might have followed.

Mayor's faux pas

Dipakendranath Das, chairman of Rajshahi Education Board, had to leave the city under circumstances that raise a flurry of questions in the public mind. Mr. Das is reported to have exposed himself to the wrath of the city mayor by not granting an undue favour to the latter.

The scary crime index

Food price and crime control are two prime indicators of good governance, as these two aspects affect the lives of the citizens squarely on a daily basis. Maintain a steady, low price and crime rate, and a beaming citizenry would shower all praises on the government. There is no scope for complacency or loosening the grip on the control mechanism because high commodity price and high crime rate together become a lethal combination.

Expatriates and policy

Bangladeshi expatriates over the years have remitted billions of dollars to the country. The increase since 2002 has been almost four-fold. In fiscal year 2009-10, it is estimated that remittance would reach around $10 billion, with a projection of $12 billion in the near future.

Sports

MSC set to consolidate

When defending champions Abahani all but confirmed a bunch of star cricketers with a mission to retain the Premier Cricket League title, traditional rivals Mohammedan has focused on mediocre cricketers to improve their standings.

BCB's amateurish move

The two-year tenure of Rafiqul Alam-led selection panel expired yesterday. Interestingly though Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) is yet to decide on whether the same panel would continue with the job or if there will be new faces. It is an example of an unprofessional attitude from a sports body that loves to brand themselves as a professional organisation.

Brothers rope in unknowns

Coach Wasim Iqbal confessed he was in the dark as a depleted Brothers Union signed up 24 players for the upcoming season on the last day of the month-long booters' transfer at the BFF House yesterday.

Diego dazzles in Rome

Brazilian magician Diego teased and toyed with AS Roma as he inspired Juventus to a crucial 3-1 victory over their Serie A rivals in the Italian capital on Sunday.

Abahani retain Joy, Ujjal

Two-time B. League champions Abahani yesterday retained the services of Arif Khan Joy and Mehdi Hasan Ujjal to strengthen their reserve bench while other contenders Mohammedan SC signed up only four on the last day of the players' registration, leaving the backup bench seemingly handicapped compared to the former.

BFF not to send team

The Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) yesterday decided not to send its squad to the qualifying round of the AFC Under-16 Championship in Philippines citing financial crisis as the reason.

Manikganj football

Dashara Nabajagaran Sangsad routed Katigram Sporting Club 6-1 in the Hafijul Islam Khan Uttu Smriti First Division Football League at the Shahid Miraz-Tapan Stadium in Manikganj yesterday.

SL eye India scalp

Having toyed with Pakistan and New Zealand, Kumar Sangakkara's Sri Lanka are eyeing India as their next scalp as the battle heats up to be the world's top Test team.

Ade impresses Hughes

Manchester City manager Mark Hughes believes Togo striker Emmanuel Adebayor is flourishing again because he is happy to have found a club that appreciates him.

Marseille hold Bordeaux

French champions Bordeaux saw their record of 14 consecutive league victories come to an end in a tight 0-0 draw with title rivals Marseille on Sunday.

Hamburg go top

A late penalty from Hamburg winger Piotr Trochowski put Hamburg top of the Bundesliga on Sunday and sealed a 3-1 win over Cologne.

Ballack calls for improvement

Captain Michael Ballack says Germany need to raise their game if they are to seal qualification for next year's World Cup in South Africa.

Valencia beat Sevilla

Cash-strapped Valencia started the new season on the right note with a 2-0 home win over rivals Sevilla who were reduced to 10 men following the dismissal of Frederic Kanoute.

No place for Owen

Michael Owen's chances of playing in the World Cup finals suffered another blow on Sunday when coach Fabio Capello snubbed the striker for next month's qualifier with Croatia.

Modric doesn't blame Bowyer

Tottenham midfielder Luka Modric insists he does not blame Lee Bowyer for the tackle that broke his leg.

Terry signs new deal

Chelsea captain John Terry signed a new five-year contract on Monday that ties him to the Premier League club until 2014.

'Grosso needs miracle to join Juve'

Juventus would need a miracle to snatch Italy full-back Fabio Grosso from Lyon before the end of Monday's transfer deadline, according to the player's agent.

Abortion at wrong hands ends her life

A woman died yesterday after undergoing an 'operation' for menstrual regulations (MR) for abortion under a family planning visitor at the Central Police Hospital in Rajarbagh in the capital.

Wenger claims 'anti-football'

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger claims Manchester United tried to kick Arsenal out of their stride by playing "anti-football" in Saturday's 2-1 victory over the Gunners.

Nadal raring to go

Rafael Nadal declared himself 100 per cent fit for the US Open after battling knee tendinitis for three months, the Spaniard eager to make the most of his first chance to complete a career Grand Slam.

Sangakkara back on top

Sri Lanka captain Kumar Sangakkara has reclaimed the number-one position in the ICC Player Rankings for Test batsmen for the fourth time in his career after brilliant knocks in the second Test against New Zealand.

Ryan wants clean sweep

Ryan Sidebottom has challenged England to send Australia home trophyless by adding to their Ashes success with Twenty20 and one-day series wins over their oldest foes.

Aussie hopes washed out

Rain thwarted Australia's bid to win a first Twenty20 international in six matches after their series opener against England ended in a no-result washout at Old Trafford here on Sunday.

Pakistan quits WC organising bodies

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) would not be involved in organising the 2011 World Cup following last week's financial settlement ended its row with the ruling body, an official said on Monday.

Lorenzo cashes on Rossi crash

Jorge Lorenzo, who crashed out of his last two races, turned the tables with his third win of the season Sunday with a MotoGP triumph at Indianapolis Motor Speedway as world champion Valentino Rossi failed to finish.

IPL teams protest IMG removal

High-profile owners of team franchises in the Indian Premier League have reacted furiously to the Indian cricket board's decision to snap ties with event management company IMG, reports said Monday.

Business

Tourism rides on Eid spirits

Advance bookings for hotels and airlines have piled up, as local travellers prepare to celebrate Eid at tourist destinations both at home and abroad.

Loan defaults spike, state banks better off

Bank loan defaults increased by 0.22 percent or Tk 492 crore in the first six months of this calendar year, but state banks have been able to bring the rate down through rescheduling.

Private jute millers cash-strapped

The government's slow pace in funding the jute sector is frustrating private mills, which suffered huge losses due to global recession, and are now facing a shortage of working capital when demands are rising.

India growth accelerates to 6.1pc

India's economy grew by 6.1 percent in the three months to June, picking up pace from the previous quarter and signalling the country's emergence from the global downturn.

GP rolls out mobile handset

Grameenphone yesterday unveiled a mobile handset under its own brand name. "Grameenphone V100" is a complete package of voice, internet and value added services.

Jute prices plummet in the north

The sharp fall in jute prices has frustrated the growers in four northern districts. The prices dropped by Tk 200-300 a mound in the last 15 days.

Insurers pull down Dhaka stocks

Dhaka stocks fell for a fourth day, led by insurance, energy and pharmaceuticals issues.

Insurance bill passes scrutiny

A parliamentary standing committee yesterday finalised the scrutiny of 'Insurance Development and Control Act-2009' with a provision of a five-member regulatory body to oversee the country's insurance companies and ensure rights of policyholders.

NBR ICT wing soon to net tax dodgers

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) is going to set up an information and communication technology (ICT) wing to ensure a hassle-free environment for taxpayers and net more tax dodgers.

A motley of colours

The crowd thickens slowly in a glass-fronted shopping area on an otherwise quiet floor of Bashundhara City.

Japan's post-poll euphoria short-lived

Japanese financial markets staged a brief victory rally Monday after a landslide win by the opposition Democrats, but the initial euphoria soon gave way to doubts about how they will run the economy.

Eurozone prices fall 0.2pc

Consumer prices in the 16 euro countries fell by 0.2 percent in August over 12 months -- markedly smaller than the record 0.7 percent fall registered in July, EU data showed on Monday.

Japan's factory output rises for fifth month

Japan's factories boosted production for a fifth straight month, but wages and retail sales remained weak, data showed Monday, highlighting the rocky recovery path facing the world's number two economy.

Australia won’t curb stimulus

Australia on Monday said it was too early to wind back its multi-billion dollar economic stimulus measures, warning premature withdrawal would "knee-cap" recovery from the global slump.

Nigeria files economic charges against bank chiefs

The Nigerian anti-graft agency on Monday filed charges against 16 bank chiefs arrested for incurring billions of dollars in bad loans for five ailing banks, a spokesman said.

Asian markets finish lower

Asian markets fell Monday as further fears over lending and a shares glut in China reverberated around the region, despite an early Tokyo rally triggered by the opposition's landslide election in Japan.

Oil eases in Asia

Oil fell in Asian trade Monday as investors awaited more data due out this week that they hope will show a recovery is underway in the US and other major economies, analysts said.

Malaysian group intends to build car plant

The Malaysian Agate group has expressed its interest to build a car plant in joint venture with local the Walton High Tech Industries, officials of both the sides disclosed it yesterday.

Bangla Trac Communications celebrates first anniversary

Bangla Trac Commun-ications Ltd, a leading IGW (International Gateway) operator, observed its 1st anniversary of operation in Bangladesh.

Bankers should pay for crisis: German finance minister

Germany's finance minister wants bankers to pay for the financial crisis, according to a letter sent to his G20 counterparts ahead of a September 4-5 meeting in London seen by AFP on Monday.

China vows to improve returns on forex reserves

China's foreign exchange regulator pledged on Monday to improve the long-term returns of its 2.13 trillion dollars in foreign exchange reserves.

New Zealand economic recovery fragile: Central bank

New Zealand's economy is recovering from the impact of the global crisis but the progress of the upturn is uncertain, central bank governor Alan Bollard said Monday.

Slovenia emerges from recession

The Slovenian economy emerged from recession in the second quarter, notching up modest growth following two consecutive quarters of economic contraction, official data showed Monday.

Metropolitan

5 special courts inactive

Five special courts dealing with some high profile corruption cases involving Niko, Gatco and Barapukuria coal mine now remain inactive as these cases have been transferred to other courts.

'Restrict private cars to ease jam'

Environmental organisations yesterday demanded steps to restrict private cars and increase public transports to reduce traffic congestion in the city.

Shahidul's appointment as addl secy challenged

The High Court (HC) yesterday issued a rule upon the government to explain within four weeks why the appointment of Shahidul Haque as additional secretary at the drafting wing of the law ministry should not be declared illegal.

Sayedee sued for war crimes in Pirojpur

A freedom fighter filed a case against Jamaat-e-Islami Central Executive Committee member, Maulana Delwar Hossain Saydee, his brother and two of their associates yesterday in connection with war crimes.

Delwar urges party men not to recruit 'corrupt, betrayers' as members

BNP Secretary General Khandaker Delwar Hossain yesterday asked the central leaders not to recruit any of the 'corrupt and betrayers' as members who worked against the party during its bad time.

Road crashes kill three

Three people were killed in separate road accidents in Narayanganj and Patuakhali yesterday.

Initiative to develop farmers' database

Agriculture Minister Matia Chowdhury has sought cooperation of all ministers, state ministers and the members of parliament in developing a farmers' database to facilitate proper planning for supply of agricultural inputs during Boro season in order to boost crop output.

Trader fined for selling fish treated with formalin

A mobile court yesterday found that a fish trader is selling formalin-treated fish at Karwan Bazar in the city where a formalin testing centre has been set up around one and a half months ago to check use of formalin in preserving fish, which is harmful to health.

Shop owner shot in city

Unidentified criminals shot a shop owner and snatched his cell phone set in the capital's Kafrul yesterday, apparently failing to realise extortion.

11 ruling party men

Police yesterday arrested 11 ruling party men in Khagrachhari Sadar upazila on charge of injuring an intra-party rival in the morning of the same day.

Using garment waste as fuel poses health hazards in Ctg

A substantial number of the impoverished city dwellers particularly in the Bakalia area in Chittagong have been increasingly using readymade garment waste as cooking fuel, posing a serious threat to the environment as well as public health.

Book fair begins

With the slogan 'Uthsobe Upahar--Boi-e Prothom' (Book first choice as gift in occasion), a fortnight-long book fair will begin on the public library premises in the city today, says a press release.

Hold confce by Oct 1

Bangabandhu Sangskritik Jote yesterday instructed its all districts, upazila, college and university units to complete their conferences by October 1, says a press release.

Ctg trader stabbed to death

Miscreants stabbed to death a vehicle trader at Panchlaish in the port city yesterday.

6 more held in Habiganj Rab assault case

Madhabpur police yesterday arrested six more villagers on charges of assaulting Rab men on Friday morning.

Defamation case against ATN Bangla chairman, four others

A defamation case was filed yesterday against chairman of private television channel ATN Bangla Mahfuzur Rahman and four others.

10 sued for lashing housewife thru' fatwa

A housewife filed a case with Dupchachia police station yesterday against 10 persons on charges of inflicting 101 lashes on her through Fatwa (religious edict).

Comilla varsity closed after BCL clash

Comilla University was closed for a month from yesterday following a factional clash between two groups of Bangladesh Chhatra League activists on the campus.

Body of security guard recovered

Police recovered the body of a security guard from the cornice on the first floor of a five-storey garment factory in the city's Kafrul yesterday.

KCC awareness campaign to fight swine flu launched

Khulna City Corporation (KCC) has launched a mass awareness programme against the spread of swine flu, a highly pathogenic human influenza type A (H1N1) virus, and to battle the new strain of flu, in the region.

Work on railway progressing fast

The construction work of 25km railway from Tarakandi of Jamalpur to Bangabandhu Bridge has been completed under the 35.19km railway link project of about Tk 216 crore.

Criminals kill housewife

Criminals killed a housewife in front of her husband due to past enmity at Andar Manik village under Kaliakoir upazila in Gazipur on Sunday night.

StanChart hands over insurance claim cheques

Standard Chartered Bank has recently handed over insurance claim cheques to the families of those valiant army officers killed in the February 25-26 Pilkhana massacre.

National

Expat's family leaves home in fear of life

Following attack and death threat by extortionists, family of a Saudi Arabia expatriate have been living outside their home at Kata Mobarak Ghona village in Farhad Nagar union under Feni district for the last 26 days.

5 hurt as AL factions in Durgapur clash again

Five local leaders and activists of Awami League (AL) were injured as two factions of Durgapur upazila AL engaged in a clash inside Rajshahi Circuit House compound yesterday.

Boy rescued, three abductors held

The law enforcers have rescued a 12-year-old boy three days into his abduction from Moulvibazar and arrested three of a gang of five.

Harassment by lawmen upsets silk weavers

Chapainwabganj District Silk Weavers Association yesterday formed a human chain, brought out a procession and submitted memorandum to the minister for textile and jute through the deputy commissioner (DC) protesting harassment by some members of law enforcement agencies.

Chilli to be dearer

Chilli may be more pungent in the coming days as it sees soaring price following damage of plants on several hundred hectares of lands during the recent heavy rain in the district, one of the country's biggest chilli producing areas.

Alal acquitted of extortion charges

A Barisal court yesterday acquitted Jubo Dal secretary and former lawmaker Syed Moazzem Hossain Alal of the charges of extortion.

Roadblock by bus owners

Plying of vehicles through Brahmanbaria came to a halt for three hours as the local bus owners association barricaded the key-points of all highways yesterday to protest illegal toll collection by extortionists.

25 JMB men produced in courts

Police produced 25 militants of outlawed Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) in two separate courts here yesterday in connection with three cases filed against them.

Housewife abducted, raped

A young housewife was abducted by criminals from Toitaya village in Nangolkot upazila and raped on Sunday. The victim was treated at local health complex. She later filed a case with Nangolkot police naming the rapists. She alleged that she was coming from her father's house at Boxganj. Before reaching home, local criminals Saiful Islam and Md Jalal took her to a schoolroom and raped. Police admitted that the victim filed a case but said none was arrested till filing of this report yesterday.

One gets life for patricide

A court in Tangail yesterday sentenced one person to life term rigorous imprisonment (RI) for killing father. The District and Sessions Judge's Court also fined the convict Tk 10,000, in default, to suffer six months more in jail. According to the case, Habibur Rahman Hoby hit his father in the head by a rod at their house at Beribaid on September 5, 1996. Seriously injured Kazimuddin later died at Mymensingh Medical College and Hospital. After the incident, victim's another son Mozaffar Hossain filed a murder case with Madhupur Police Station. Habibur was tried in absentia.

Ruet founding day today

Teachers and students of Rajshahi University of Engineering and Technology (Ruet) will celebrate the sixth founding anniversary of the university with a day-long programme today. The programmes will begin with the hoisting of the national flag and the university flag at 6:00am at administrative building, VC's residence, central library and students dormitories. Ruet vice-chancellor Prof Fazlul Bari will inaugurate the 'founding anniversary' programme by releasing pigeons and balloons. A discussion meeting will be held at the university auditorium on the occasion while Rajshahi City Corporation Mayor AHM Khairuzzaman Liton will be present as chief guest.

Criminal held with arms

A team of a Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) on Sunday arrested a top criminal and recovered a 9 mm pistol and 50 bullets from him at Narail-Lohagara Road near Lohagara petrol pump under Lohagara upazila. Arrestee Aslam , 30, is son of Syed Shelu Miah of Noagram village. Police and locals said, acting on a tip-off, Rab-6 raided a tea stall near Lohagara petrol pump and arrested him and recovered the pistol and the bullets from his possession.

Human chain in Manikganj

Bangladesh Mahila Parisad Manikganj unit formed a human chain near Baniajuri bus stand on Dhaka-Aricha highway under Ghior police station yesterday demanding immediate arrest and exemplary punishment to killers of Runa Akhter, who was killed allegedly by her husband for dowry just a day after their marriage on August 10, at West Jabra village in the district.

12 houses gutted in Ctg

Twelve dwelling houses were gutted in a fire at a village under Mirersarai upazila early yesterday. The fire broke out at a tin-shed house at Patakuti village under Osmanpur union at around 8:30am and spread fast engulfing adjoining 11 other houses. Liquefied Petroleum (LP) gas cylinders in almost every house made the situation devastating. Station Officer Shafiqul Islam at Sitakunda Fire Station said the extent of damage may stand at Tk 40 lakh since the affected families could not save any property.

International

Israeli strike on Iran's nuke plan 'imminent'

If Iran does not accept international proposals to roll back its nuclear programme by next month, it faces an imminent Israeli strike, a newspaper article said.

US Afghan strategy 'not working'

A top US general in Afghanistan has called for a revised military strategy, suggesting the current one is failing.

UN meet aims to boost global network against climate change

Meteorologists opened the World Climate Conference yesterday in what a US official called a "critical" attempt to share information and so help communities worldwide adapt to climate change.

BJP rules out change in its leadership

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Sunday dismissed speculations of a leadership change while Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) leaders, who met LK Advani, said the party would emerge stronger from the present turmoil.

Chinese chopper had violated Indian airspace in Kashmir

Admitting that a Chinese military helicopter had violated Indian airspace in Jammu and Kashmir two months back, Army Chief General Deepak Kapoor yesterday said New Delhi has taken up the matter with Beijing.

Violence in Kashmir dips to record low

Violence in Indian Kashmir has fallen to its lowest level since militants launched an insurgency against Indian rule 20 years ago, officials said yesterday, while warning against complacency.

California wildfires claim two lives, gain ground

Raging wildfires Monday gained ground around Los Angeles where they have claimed their first two fatalities and left three other people injured while threatening thousands of homes.

Colombian president has swine flu

Colombian President Alvaro Uribe has the swine flu but is doing well, his spokesman said Sunday, just days after the leader returned from a regional summit in Argentina.

Myanmar refugees in China head home

Refugees who fled Myanmar into China after deadly clashes between junta forces and ethnic rebels trickled back across the border Monday, but some said they feared going home to more unrest.

Asian leaders seek closer ties after Japan power shift

Leaders across Asia yesterday welcomed the historic shift in power after Japan's general election and sought closer ties with Tokyo, with only North Korea sounding a note of dissent.

Opposition mounts to Ahmadinejad cabinet

Top Iranian lawmakers voiced strong opposition on Monday to some of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's proposed ministers, including women, on the second day of a heated debate on his cabinet line-up.

Tough times for LDP

Crushed in a historic election rout, its old guard leadership in disarray, Japan's long-ruling conservative party on Monday faced up to the unaccustomed role of life in opposition.

'Barbaric' Taliban chops-off ears, nose of Afghan man for casting vote

The Afghanistan Taliban slashed off a man's ears and nose for defying their order and casting his vote in the country's presidential elections.

4 Afghan policemen escape Taliban prison, kill 6 rebels

Four Afghan police staged a dramatic breakout from a militant prison in northwest Afghanistan, killing six of their captors in a gunfight that left one officer dead, the interior ministry said Monday.

PML-N takes abrupt U-turn on trying Gen Kayani for 'high treason'

A day after the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) chief Nawaz Sharif's spokesman Zaeem Qadri said that Army Chief General Ashfaq Kayani should also be prosecuted under high treason charges along with former president General Pervez Musharraf, the party has denied General Kayani's involvement in imposition of emergency rule on November 3, 2007.

Iraq, Syria at loggerheads over terror claims

Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki said Monday that 90 percent of foreign terrorists who infiltrate Iraq did so via Syria, a charge likely to worsen already fractured relations between the neighbours.

Lankan journalist given 20 years in prison

A Sri Lankan court Monday sentenced an ethnic Tamil journalist to 20 years in prison under the island's harsh anti-terrorism law for publishing articles critical of the government's war on the Tamil Tiger rebels.

Discovery docks with ISS

The US shuttle Discovery made a textbook docking Sunday with the International Space Station where a total of 13 astronauts now begin nine days together improving and supplying the orbiting outpost.

Commandos kill 8 in Mexico

A gang of armed commandos gunned down five adults and three children in the northern Mexican state of Sinaloa, authorities said Sunday.

Arts & Entertainment

Making it on her own

There was a time when people heard the name Ankhi Alamgir, and immediately associated her with her famous father, actor Alamgir. Ankhi's mother, Khoshnoor is also a well-known lyricist. Being born into a renowned family has had its ups and downs, admits the accomplished singer Ankhi. But things have changed since then and today Ankhi has carved a niche for herself in the entertainment world. In an interview with The Daily Star, Ankhi talked about the journey to where she stands now.

MAMI to honour Greek auteur Theodoros Angelopoulos

Nothing could be a better way to wrap up a film festival than conferring the Lifetime Achievement award to a legendary director like Theodoros Angelopoulos of Greece.

Bengali International: Promoting ‘Bangaliaana’ overseas

Bengali International is a UK-based cultural organisation of Bangladeshi expatriates. The organisation was founded in 1978 to promote Bengali culture and heritage among the Bengali and non-Bengali communities living in UK.

Cultural organisation Harbola turns 12

Harbola, a TSC based organisation of recitors, performed "Jonantikey" on its 12th anniversary at Shawkat Osman Auditorium, Central Public Library, Shahbagh on August 29.

Pablo Picasso: An artist way ahead of his time

Though famed artist Pablo Picasso passed away 35 years ago, the Cubist movement which he helped found, lives on. Among his most famous works are the cubist work Les Demoiselle d'Avignon (1907), his depiction of the German bombing of Guernica during the Spanish Civil War, titled Guernica (1937) and The Weeping Woman (1937).

Bush daughter Jenna Hager becomes TV reporter

NBC's "Today" show has hired someone with White House experience as a new correspondent -- former first daughter Jenna Hager.

Reality TV contestant drowns in challenge

A contestant on a Pakistani reality TV show drowned while performing a challenge for the programme, a spokeswoman for the show's sponsor said Sunday.

OP-ED

Motivating our nation

WHENEVER we try to identify the reasons for our nation not performing to its potential, most of us point at the lack of motivation. How can India, with over 1 billion people and nearly 30 different languages, forge unity despite having diverse creeds, cultures and religions? The answer is that the nation has been motivated over the years by dedicated leadership.

To the health minister

OUR health minister said that there is no reason to be scared of "swine flu." He probably wanted to mean that creating panic would not be right. But with due respect to his views, we have to really be very cautious about this unpredictable natured H1N1 virus. According to WHO, "it is a sloppy, capricious, and promiscuous influenza virus."

My experience as editor of a Bangla magazine

I am Noorjehan Murshid and I come from Murshidabad. I was educated at the Victoria Institution in Calcutta and the Universities of Calcutta and Boston. My first job after my graduation from Calcutta was that of Headmistress of a Girls' High School in Barisal. Before my M.A. results came out, I was appointed Superintendent of a Post Graduate Women Students' Hostel in Calcutta. At the same time, I joined All India Radio as a broadcaster.


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