The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Thursday, July 24, 2014


News of: Wednesday, 16th of September, 2009

Front Page

BDR trial finalised

The government yesterday decided to try the heinous offences like killings, attempt to murder, looting and arson committed during the February 25-26 BDR mutiny at the speedy trial tribunal under the penal code.

Sugar swindle

Sugar allocated for Khagrachhari never reached its destination as 12 government-assigned dealers of the district sold it right at the mill gates in Kushtia and Chuadanga violating dealership contract.

Power goals need $6b investment

Finance Minister AMA Muhith yesterday said that an investment of US$ 6 billion to set up massive power projects to cater the country's needs was not difficult as private sector and development partners would play the major role in it while the government will play the role of the catalyst.

PM warns against plots, conspiracy

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday alerted the countrymen to the ongoing conspiracy of 'special quarter' and 'undemocratic forces' who are still plotting to wipe out democracy and grab the seat in power after being failed to capture it.

First bail granted in BDR case

A High Court (HC) division bench for the first time granted bail to one of the 1988 accused in Pilkhana carnage case.

Tough action against price manipulators

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said the government will take action against those responsible for the skyrocketing price of sugar.

Ex-forest guard among 7 arrested

Police and BDR in separate raids yesterday arrested seven persons, including a former forest guard on charges of felling Jhau trees (tamarisk) at Teknaf sea beach of Cox's Bazar.

Khaleda, son appeal to quash case

Two separate petitions were filed yesterday with the High Court for quashing proceedings against former prime minister Khaleda Zia and her son Tarique Rahman in Zia orphanage trust corruption case filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

Outlaw killed in 'shootout'

An operative of outlawed Sarbahara Party was killed in a 'shootout' between his cohorts and law enforcers in Batajhor area under Gouronodi upazila of Barisal early yesterday.

Scrap 5 housing projects, JS body

A parliamentary committee yesterday asked the Ministry of Housing and Public Works to scrap approval of five housing projects assigned to three private real estate companies for failing to meet conditions within stipulated timeframe.

Basic medicare banks on community clinics

Health experts at a roundtable welcomed the Awami League government's move to make the community clinics functional, saying that the project on community clinics will help ensure basic health services for the grassroots people.

Amended PRSP placed in JS

The government yesterday placed in parliament a draft of the amended second Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP) with an estimated expenditure of Tk 3,108 billion to achieve the goals and targets set out in the modified document.

Stern action if MPs involved in wrongdoings

Sheikh Hasina yesterday warned her party lawmakers of stern action if they patronise tender manipulation and extortion, which had apparently tainted the image of the eight-month-old Awami League government.

Pak jets pound militant hideout

Fighter jets pounded suspected militant hide-outs yesterday and killed five insurgents in a tribal region where the Pakistani military declared victory over insurgents six months ago following an offensive, an official said.

Del Potro dethrones Federer

Juan Martin del Potro dethroned five-time defending champion Roger Federer 3-6, 7-6 (7/5), 4-6, 7-6 (7/4), 6-2 to win the US Open on Monday, ending an era to win in his first Grand Slam final.

Govt to extend holiday if Eid on Sept 22

The government, by an executive order, has extended the Eid vacation by a day up to September 23 if Eid-ul-Fitr is celebrated on September 22.

Army called out to control city traffic

Members of armed forces were deployed yesterday at four city points in aid of traffic police in controlling nearly collapsed traffic system in the capital.

N Korea unwilling to give up nukes: Seoul

South Korean President Lee Myung-bak said yesterday that North Korea is showing no sign of giving up nuclear weapons, although the communist regime has made recent conciliatory gestures because UN sanctions against it are working.

Moderate Kashmiri leader seeks unity with hardliners

The moderate leader of Indian Kashmir's largest political separatist group pledged Tuesday to seek reconciliation with hardliners who broke away six years ago.

Rajshahi Zoo otter electrocuted

An otter (udbiral) was electrocuted inside its cage at Rajshahi Central Zoo yesterday due to alleged negligence of the zoo authorities.

Carjacker beaten to death in city

A mob foiled a carjacking attempt of three criminals after beating a carjacker to death and injuring another critically in the capital's Pallabi on Monday night.

India fails to curb Maoist insurgency

India is failing to curb a growing Maoist insurgency, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said yesterday, while also warning of a "worrisome" upswing in cross-border infiltration by Pakistan-based militants.

Notice

Today's issue contains an 8-page supplement (tabloid) on the growth of hospitality industry in Bangladesh. The first supplement highlights services and facilities offered by some of the finest five-star hotels. Subsequent supplements will cover the growth of motels, resorts, tourist sites, tour operators and aviation companies in the country.

Announcement

Today's issue contains a full-page supplement on a roundtable on "Community clinics: Effect on our health services," organised by The Daily Star and Health 21, a platform of health rights groups, on September 12. See page-12

Editorial

The unending 'crossfire' deaths

It is time to register our protest once more on the issue of 'crossfire' killings. In the past five years, 1,500 people have died in what has been given out as encounters, when the security forces were 'compelled' to fire back in 'self-defence.' And in the last five months, 60 individuals have lost their lives in 'crossfire' incidents all over the country. To say that we are shocked would be an understatement. We are, all of us who believe in decency and the rule of law, simply outraged. The time has now come for us to tell the authorities that enough is enough. Far too many killings of individuals have gone on in the name of preserving or ensuring law and order than one can justify. More important is the fact that no society can stand by and witness citizens dying in dubious and extra-judicial circumstances. What has become clear over the years is that such killings only spawn more killings, leaving the spectre of the barbaric looming over the social structure.

Erratic sugar market

The sugar market has been behaving erratically since long. A government press note, on the other hand, has claimed that there is no sugar supply shortage in the market with the further assurance that more sugar is in the pipeline. So, if one is to go by the government's version on the matter, there should be no crisis of sugar. Unfortunately, the reality on the ground makes a mockery of the government's claim to the contrary.

The law secretary's apology is not enough

IT is a strange way to begin an inquiry and then to end it. Suranjit Sengupta, chairman of the parliamentary standing committee on law, justice and parliamentary affairs, has informed the nation that the committee will not go any further in investigating the role certain individuals in the power circle played in the recent removal from service of two judges (the judges have since been restored to their positions). And he has based his decision on the ground that the law secretary has already apologised to the committee and has indeed taken upon himself all responsibility for the fiasco.

Starting afresh

IN Bangladesh foreign policy, the "India factor" looms large. Many bilateral issues have been pending for a long time and Bangladesh cannot persuade India to resolve the issues, some of which are "bread and butter" issues affecting common people.

Sports

Veni, vidi, vici for Del Potro

Roger Federer sat in his sideline chair, listening to the music, gazing into the distance -- the glassy-eyed look of a defeated man.

Shakib not shortlisted

England's Ashes-winning captain Andrew Strauss and India opener Gautam Gambhir were among four players short-listed for the Cricketer of the Year award, the ICC said on Tuesday.

One of his best

Sachin Tendulkar has rated his risk-free 138 against Sri Lanka in the final of the Compaq Cup as one of his best innings. His 44th one-day hundred propelled India to 319, which proved 46 runs too many for Sri Lanka.

Rain puts paid to action

Both matches of the Citycell Federation Cup were postponed yesterday following heavy rain that made the condition of the ground unplayable at the Bangabandhu National Stadium.

Federer looks forward

Losing his US Open title and 41-match winning streak was a huge blow, but Roger Federer says he will spend no time in brooding over it.

Athletes hold dorm staff hostage

The athletes of the training camp for 2010 South Asian (SA) Games yesterday confined the dormitory staff for almost two hours in a bid to press home their demands of ensuring the water supply as well as improving the facilities of toilets and bathrooms at the Mirpur Krira Palli.

Archery team leave for Kolkata

A 20-member Bangladesh archery team left Dhaka to take part in the 4th Asian Archery Grand Prix Championship to be held in Kolkata from September 16 to September 19.

Women born again

Boring? Predictable? Women's tennis has been written off as a spectacle in recent times, but the US Open has proved otherwise.

Alam trashes age flak

Pakistan cricket team coach Intikhab Alam on Tuesday brushed aside "negative" criticism from those demanding his removal because of his age, saying the campaign was motivated by jealousy.

Serena apologizes

Serena Williams apologized Monday for the abusive and threatening tirade she launched at a line judge in a semifinal loss to Kim Clijsters at the US Open on Saturday.

BCF election demanded by Sept

Four members of the newly formed ad-hoc committee of the Bangladesh Chess Federation (BCF) said yesterday that they were included on the committee without their consent.

Barca travel to Inter

Defending champions Barcelona travel to Inter Milan in Wednesday's stand-out Champions League fixture, with Barca's Zlatan Ibrahimovic set for a swift reunion with the club he left in the summer.

Eduardo in spotlight

Arsenal forward Eduardo will be under the microscope in his side's Champions League clash at Standard Liege on Wednesday as he returns to European action after being granted a surprise reprieve by UEFA.

FA charges Adebayor

Manchester City's Emmanuel Adebayor was on Tuesday charged by the Football Association with violent and improper conduct over a challenge on former Arsenal team-mate Robin van Persie and his provocative goal celebration.

Diego heads to Europe

Under-fire Argentina coach Diego Maradona has travelled to Europe, thereby avoiding a crucial meeting on the poor performances of the national side, his personal doctor said on Monday.

Ancelotti targets final

Carlo Ancelotti has told his Chelsea stars that reaching the Champions League final is the least they should achieve in Europe's elite club competition this season.

Bumper deal for Messi

Lionel Messi will become Barcelona's highest-paid player when he signs a new contract this week, according to club president Joan Laporta.

Wrong studs was Forlan's downfall

Diego Forlan says his Manchester United career ended when he failed to wear the right boots for a vital game against Chelsea, thus risking - and engaging - the wrath of Sir Alex Ferguson.

Costa Rica sack coach

Rodrigo Kenton was sacked on Monday as coach of Costa Rica after three successive 2010 World Cup qualifier defeats which has placed their hopes of making it to South Africa in jeopardy.

Business

Focus on income tax

Finance Minister AMA Muhith yesterday asked tax officials to stop corruption and harassing taxpayers to bring a change in the culture of the department.

ADB sounds alarm over falling investment

Investment sluggishness remains a big concern for Bangladesh, said an Asian Development Bank (ADB) report released yesterday.

Foreign missions to be stronger to help workers

Bangladeshi missions abroad are not proactive in serving their workers' interests in the respective countries, Expatriates' Welfare and Overseas Employment Minister Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain told the House yesterday.

One district one product project on the move

The government has primarily selected three products to develop under a "one district one product (ODOP)" scheme, which was chalked out to diversify the country's export basket.

Concentrate on exports of value added items

The trade gap between Bangladesh and India could be reduced if Bangladeshi entrepreneurs concentrate on exports of value added items to India, suggested the Indian high commissioner in Dhaka yesterday.

Minister sees stronger trade ties with Bhutan

Industries Minister Dilip Barua said yesterday Bangladesh and Bhutan could expand relations in sectors such as trade, industry and tourism.

Spain moves upmarket to attract more tourists

Half a century after it pioneered the cheap "holiday-in-the-sun" package deal, Spain is seeking to upgrade its image by convincing the discerning and affluent tourist that it has much more to offer than just sun, sea and sangria.

US embraces 'mini-lateralism'

The United States was dealt a major blow by the world financial crisis but can maintain its global influence if it works more cooperatively with other countries, a British study said Tuesday.

Feni chamber polls Oct 1

Election of Feni Chamber of Commerce and Industries (FCCI) will be held on October 1.

India's central bank hints at future rate rises

India's central bank is likely to need to raise interest rates sooner than others around the world, but it will wait until recovery has firmly taken root, the bank's governor said Tuesday.

Salaries for Sept to be disbursed today

All non-gazetted employees of the government, non-government, autonomous and non-commissioned armed forces will receive their salaries and allowances for the current month today, to help them with Eid-ul Fitr celebrations.

Social networks for business

Every year, Ernst & Young recruits many of its 3,500 college graduates using a career group on Facebook, where it not only posts job information but also interacts with prospective employees. Last year, Starbucks launched an online community “my Starbucks Idea”, which allows consumers to share, discuss and vote on ideas giving vital marketing feedback to the company.

San Miguel looking for investments abroad

Top Philippines firm San Miguel said Tuesday it was on the prowl for big natural resource investments abroad as part of an increasingly aggressive expansion outside of its core brewing business.

Asian stocks higher on Wall Street

Asian shares picked up Tuesday as dealers took their cue from a rise on Wall Street overnight but a weak dollar weighed on exporters.

Oil down

Oil prices dropped in Asian trade Tuesday with investors worried that a US-China trade row could derail the global economic recovery, analysts said.

Player quotas in EPL

Clubs playing in the English Premier League from next season will have a 25-player squad cap and also have to introduce a quota on "home-grown" players.

Survey shows pre-election lift for German economy

Investors are increasingly confident that Germany's economy will rebound quickly from recession, a survey showed on Tuesday, providing some cheer less than two weeks before the country goes to the polls.

Russia sees exit from recession from Q3

Russia will start fully emerging from recession in the third quarter, Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin said on Tuesday, after an economic crisis that has battered the once booming Russian economy.

China says US must avoid triggering trade tensions

China said Tuesday the United States, as the source of the global financial crisis, should avoid triggering trade tensions, but also signalled a willingness to avoid an all-out war with Washington.

Japan Airlines to cut 6,800 jobs, pursue tie-up

Japan Airlines (JAL) said Tuesday it would slash 6,800 jobs and pursue a tie-up with a foreign carrier in a bid to return to profit in the face of severe turbulence unleashed by the global recession.

Metropolitan

Only 14 of 1,200 diploma engineers pass

Food minister yesterday disclosed in parliament that only 14 out of 1200 diploma engineers were able to pass an examination for the posts of project implementation officers under the food ministry.

7 killed in road crashes

Seven people were killed in separate road accidents in Thakurgaon, Satkhira, Brahmanbaria and Comilla in last two days.

'Bring entire city under sewerage network'

Speakers at a discussion yesterday underscored the need for bringing the entire city under sewerage treatment plant to save it from environmental degradation.

Domestic help jumps to death in city

A young domestic help reportedly committed suicide by jumping from the second floor of a building at Gulshan in the city yesterday.

Special launch, steamer services on Eid

Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation (BIWTC) and Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) have arranged special steamer, launch and ferry services for the homebound passengers on the occasion of holy Eid-ul- Fitr.

BDR chief blamed for wearing new uniform

Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JSD) lawmaker Mayeen Uddin Khan Badal yesterday criticised BDR Director General Maj Gen Md Mainul Islam for using new name, new uniform and new monogram of the force, as the government is yet to decide on them.

ACC presses charges against expat for cheating Hajj pilgrims

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) yesterday pressed charges against a Bangladesh-born British citizen in connection with a case filed against him for cheating British Hajj pilgrims out of Tk 2.39 crore in 2008.

'Community participation a must for quality healthcare'

Speakers at a workshop yesterday observed that community participation is a must to ensure quality services in public healthcare sector.

Report on Mobile Court Bill placed in JS

The Parliamentary Standing Committee on the Ministry of Home placed its report on 'The Mobile Court Bill-2009' in the House yesterday.

Navy officer missing

A naval officer went missing and two others were injured when a Navy speedboat capsized after it had lost its control in Narayanganj Bandar Kheyaghat area in the Shitalakhya river yesterday.

Status quo on appointment of new imam stayed

The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday stayed for four weeks a High Court order that issued status quo on the appointment of imam (religious leader) for conducting Eid congregation at Sholakia Eidgah ground in Kishoreganj.

2nd batch in India for higher edn

A total of 10 female students, who were awarded Brac-Rai Foundation Scholarship-2009 (2nd batch) under 'Medhabikash Programme' of Brac Education Programme (BEP), have gone to Rai Foundation in Delhi to pursue their undergraduate courses, says a press release.

Int'l Ozone Day today

The International Ozone Day will be observed today here as elsewhere in the world for creating awareness about depletion of the ozone layer and its adverse effects on this planet's environment.

Vigorous activities to begin after RTI Act rules framed

Chief Information Commissioner M Azizur Rahman yesterday said the Information Commission will start working spontaneously and vigorously once the rules of the Right to Information (RTI) Act 2009 are framed.

Donation for cancer hospital

Nizam ul Islam, a former banker, donated Tk 10 lakh to the fund of the under-construction Ahsania Mission Cancer Hospital (AMCH) at Uttara in the city.

Lottery for 3 categories tomorrow

Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha (Rajuk) will hold lottery in three categories for the Purbachal New Town Project at Osmani Memorial Auditorium tomorrow.

'Waterways to decrease significantly for Tipaimukh dam'

Speakers at a discussion yesterday said the country's waterways would decrease significantly if the proposed Tipaimukh dam is constructed, as its consequences would result in loss of navigability of rivers.

BNP slates vandalism of name plaque of Zia Sarak

BNP Secretary General Khandakar Delwar Hossain in a statement yesterday condemned the incident of vandalising the name plaque of 'Bir Uttam Ziaur Rahman Sarak' adjacent to the Jahangir Gate of Dhaka Cantonment.

National

Accused move scot-free under the nose of cops

Four of the five accused in Panay Mala Tripura murder case are yet to be netted ten days after filing of the case although they are doing their business in a local market.

Buyers assaulted for protesting price hike

Three buyers were injured as sugar traders attacked them for protesting sugar price hike at Banshtala Bazar in Kaliganj upazila yesterday.

Villagers in B'baria besiege power office

About 1,000 people of four villages under Sarail upazila yesterday laid siege to local PDB engineer's office for three hours from 11:00am protesting frequent power outage.

Police attacked to snatch girl rescued from abductors

A group of people on Monday attacked a police station, clashed with the law enforcers in a bid to snatch a teenage girl rescued from abductors in Lalmohan upazila under Bhola district.

Ring leader of Ctg 'malam party' held

Police in separate drives arrested five muggers, locally known as 'malam party' men from different spots under Khulshi and Bayezid police stations in the city on Sunday night and early Monday.

BSF returns two bodies

Border Security Force (BSF) of India yesterday returned bodies of two Bangladeshis through a flag meeting at a place near Chirirbandar upazila border. BSF of 69 Bashantipur Camp in India opposite to Shibpur Chowdhurypara of Phulbari shot dead Md Mohsin Ali, 18, son of Billal Hossain of Chirirbandar upazila and Ruhul Amin, 22, son of Abdus Sattar of Phulbari upazila when they approached near the border. BDR sources said, BSF handed over the bodies to BDR of 40 Phulbari Battalion after a meeting at Kuddarpara village yesterday. Later, police in Chirirbandar upazila handed over the bodies to their family members.

Bail prayers rejected

A court here yesterday rejected the bail petitions of 26 Jamaat-Shibir activists and sent them to jail. Sources said, a case was filed against the Jamaat-Shibir activists of Baralekha upazila following a clash between Chhatra League and Shibir at Baralekha Degree College on July 25. Police arrested 26 Jamaat-Shibir men in connection with the incident on Sunday. They were produced before the judicial magistrate's court which rejected their bail petitions. The arrestees included Emadadul Islam, vice chairman of Baralekha upazila parishad and Khizir Ahmed, an officer of Islami Bank.

Youth's body recovered

Police yesterday noon recovered decomposed body of a youth, aged 25-30, from the Arial Kha River at Shibchar under the district. Officer in-charge (OC) of Shibchar police station said, local people saw a body floating in the Arial Kha in Shiruail Sipahikandi area of the upazila at noon and informed police. A team of police went there and recovered the body. They sent it to Madaripur hospital morgue for post mortem.

Two get life for murder

A court here yesterday sentenced two people to rigorous imprisonment (RI) for life in a murder case in Gomostapur upazila. Additional District and Sessions Judge Arup Kumar Goswami pronounced the verdict. The court also fined each Tk 10,000, in default, to suffer one more year in jail. The convicts are Monirul Islam and Sadequl Islam of Udayangor village. Among them, Sadequl is absconding. According to the prosecution story, Monirul Islam asked his business partner Mojibur Rahman to see him at 1:30 pm on July 20, 1999. On the same night, Monirul and Sadequl killed Mojibur. Local people found Mojibur's body at a field at Nungola village the next morning. Victim's brother Durul Huda later filed a murder case with Gomostapur police station accusing the two.

Heroin seized in Comilla

Members of 33 Bangladesh Rifles Battalion seized 1,700 gm heroin worth over Tk one crore 70 lakh at village Shreepur in Amangonda union under Chouddagram upazila yesterday morning. A team led by Lt Col Fakruddin Ahmed raided Shreepur area and recovered the heroin left abandoned at the spot. None was arrested. The seized heroin was deposited to Customs department and a case was filed with Chouddagram police station.

Insurance staff murdered

Miscreants hacked to death an insurance staff in Kamarkhanda upazila on Monday. Victim Shahin Hossain, 38, was son of Haji Amjad Hossain of village Rasulpur and field worker of Prime Insurance Company Limited. Police and victim's family sources said, a gang numbering 8 to 10 waylaid Shahin at Purbarasulpur and hacked him to death while he was returning home from Dhaka in an auto-tempo in the early morning. The gang also beat up some other passengers of the auto-tempo, locally known as Bhutbhuti.

24 charged with robbery

Charges were pressed against 24 people on Monday in a robbery case at village Kamardangi in Sadar upazila. Sources said the gang committed robbery in 11 houses. The accused include an outlaw. Of the 24 charge sheeted accused, 11 are now in jail while the rest 13 are still absconding. Court sources said, the gang armed with deadly weapons raided the houses of Ananga Sarkar, Bijoy Sarkar, Swarajit Sarkar, Biswajit Sarkar, Kalipada Sakar, Arabinda Sarkar, Gouranga Sarkar, Anil Sarkar, Mahendra Sarkar and Shyamal Sarkar on March 17. They looted valuables worth Tk 4 lakh from the houses.

Workers' leader beaten up

A gang of criminals Sunday night beat up the president of Gopalganj district motor workers union at the police lines crossing on the Dhaka-Khulna highway. Seriously injured Bulbul Islam was admitted to a hospital. His younger brother Hedayet Islam filed a case in this connection. Bulbul Islam claimed that a bus owners association leader and his men attacked him as he opposed toll collection from different transports including buses plying on the Dhaka-Khulna highway. He alleged that although the tolls are collected in the name of the association, the money is not deposited to its fund.

Timber trader murdered

A man was hacked to death by a timber trader following an altercation over selling a tree at Balarampur village under Kaliganj upazila Monday morning. Police and locals said the victim, Ramzan Ali, 55, had earlier agreed to sell a tree to timber trader Joynal Ali of the village. But he later sold it out to another timber trader. Ramzan's act angered Joynal. He along with his son Jony and nephew Majedul went to Ramzan's house and had an altercation with him. At one stage, they swooped on Ramzan and hacked him to death. On information, police went to the spot, recovered the body and sent it to Jhenidah Sadar Hospital morgue for autopsy. A murder case was filed with Kaliganj police station against Joynal, Jony and Majedul.

Letters

Aila-hit people

A brief news article and a photograph published in a daily has rightly depicted the miseries of the people of the southern part of the country (The Daily Star: 6th September,2009). It is not the picture of only Shyamnagar Upazila of Satkhira district.

Baul Samrat

Shah Abdul Karim, after his heart throbbed for long 93 years, found his worldly presence too fragile and left us on 12 September for eternal rest in the other world after years of his probing into the mysteries of 'expression of body' (Deho Sadhona) and 'expression of mind' (Mono Sadhona).

Dangerous Piranha!

I wrote in a letter to a Bangla daily, back in 2007, that the carnivorous Piranha was being sold openly in the market as Thai Rupchanda, which is totally illegal and should be stopped.

Better leaders needed

Leadership is of two types. The transformational leader and the transactional leader. The transactional leader is one who is content with running things as they are. While the transformational leader is concerned with change. The transformational leader is not content to see things as they are but always endeavours to transform society through new and innovative ideas. In Bangladesh at this moment we need transformational leaders. But unfortunately most of our political and civil bureaucrats who are at the helm of power are transactional. That's why change is very slow and things are not moving.

Death, dignity and ethics

I have been thinking for quite some time that I should write at least a brief note on the issue. And finally I have decided to write after watching the TV news coverage of the tragic road accident and the death of former finance minister Mr. M. Saifur Rahman and that of another dreadful accident in which five members of a family were killed. Obviously, the news of Mr. Rahman's death came first in the electronic media and the way the accident scene and particularly the dead body of the late Rahman were shown in the exposures was not the way one would expect to watch them. His uncovered body, the doctor examining his pupil all appeared very undignified and highly improper. People should have minimum respect for a dead man whoever it may be. It was more painful to watch when a very popular TV channel gave coverage on the illustrious past of Mr. Rahman. The coverage again started with his uncovered body and swollen face. Similarly, both the electronic and the print media showed bodies of the victims of the other accident in the similar manner, lying on the ground uncovered. This is a very familiar scene when our media cover this type of sad stories. I am not very well aware of the journalistic ethics but still, as a member of the public, I think the ethics should dictate our conscience as how to show respect to a dead body or victims of any other disaster or mishap when the related news events are covered by the media. I firmly believe that the media, in its own way, always dictates our conscience towards ethical norms whenever we need it at our personal, social or national level, but what would happen if the media itself deviates from its own principled responsibility?

Railway reforms

A detailed and interesting front-page report on the proposal for Bangladesh Railway reforms, put forward by outside railway consultants, was published in a local daily on September5. It represents the bureaucratic stand for stone walling the proposal suggesting to hand over powers to the CEO of Bangladesh Railways. As reported, and I quote: "They (Secretary of the communications ministry and his officials) are against creation of a separate division as in the proposed organogram which will empower the BR chief to be responsible to the communications minister directly."

Eggs and green chillies

Japan, is the second biggest economy in the world. The Japanese are one of the highest per capita income group people. If some one believes that the Japanese government cannot import most tasty and protein rich beef and supply to the Japanese, no one will believe it. I have never been to Japan but I hear that a kilogram of fresh beef in Japan in the present market costs $500.00. Japanese cattle farmers reportedly raise cattle with lot of expenses and care because they get handsome return. Even though price is very high the Japanese do not mind and do not create pressure on their government to bring them cheap beef from abroad. This prove their patriotism.

Diplomats and traffic

Re: "Diplomats and traffic," by A diplomat's wife (Sept. 8).

Promotions

Most recently, the government promoted a huge number of civil servants to different posts in the civil bureaucracy hierarchy. While the mass promotion has been criticized by the media as promotion spree or the like, there is no denying the fact that promotion is definitely one of the most effective tools for generating employees' motivation. This is all the more true in a situation where government employees' incentive packages are not at all commensurate with the market prices, let alone being comparable with those of their counterparts in the private sector. So, granting promotion to the deserving employees (if it has been really done so) is surely a good gesture by the government. But what strikes me is the information that a large number of officers promoted will remain posted as officers on special duty (OSD) ( read, officers on no duty). The euphemism “the officer on special duty' is in fact a stigma which is arbitrarily used for dumped officers as well as for officers newly promoted and waiting for placement. The overcrowded lobby of OSDs will be eased to some extent by posting most of the promoted officers belonging to the administration cadre on in sito basis ( in positions they were holding before their promotion). But officers who got promoted to the post of deputy secretary from other cadres perhaps will have to sit idle for a long time. Some of them will get posting by dint of strong tadbir (lobbying) or just by virtue of luck. While the secretariat is overcrowded with OSDs, some important cadres like Audit and Accounts, Customs, Income Tax suffer from acute shortage of manpower. By losing more senior level officers who opted to become deputy secretaries, the HRM situation of these department will worsen further. So, as in administration cadre, it will be an effective and efficient decision for government to post officers coming to the senior service pool from other cadres on in sito basis in their respective cadres until they are posted in the secretariat job. Otherwise, the government's indulgence in the luxury of having a huge number OSDs by paying them and not getting any service from them in return will simply be damaging in the long run. Moreover, psychological trauma of the OSDs who are otherwise not meant for being traumatized by remaining workless and hence worthless is sure to adversely affect the collective efficacy and efficiency of the bureaucracy.

Creaking law and order

This is response to the editorial entitled "Arrest Surging Crime" published in your daily on the 8th September, 2009. The account of robbery, extortion, hijacking, murder, rape and all other kinds criminal activities which have been very correctly presented by the learned author, Mr. Asadullah Khan, is really alarming. It may have surpassed all the records of any of the previous governments, not to mention that of the previous caretaker govt. So, it is high time to find out the reasons for such an alarming surge. It may not be due to any flaw in the democratic system which we are exercising in this country.

Grabbed canal

A couple of days back a piece of news published in DS caught my attention which read “PM orders the concerned department to free all canals of the country from the illegal grabbers. It is a very worthwhile decision and got me interested in writing this letter. On the 3rd July (if my memory doesn't betray) there was a report on Channel 1 news on freeing a 100-year-old canal from illegal grabbers at Karatia, Tangail. This canal flows through just behind Saadat University College, one of the first five university colleges of the country. Just after the report was telecast on Channel 1, a number of policemen along with a magistrate reached the canal side and started breaking the encroachment. But the local Union Parishad chairman showed up there and requested the magistrate to give him 7 days' time to get the land free from grabbers. But alas, two months are gone! Nothing has happened! The grabbers are still encroaching govt lands.

To the mayor…

A huge number of passers-by have to cross the road in front of Banani Chairmanbari, which links Mohakhali and Kokoli. In Banani there are a number of offices and garment factories the employees of which mostly live in Kafrul, Kachukhet, Mirpur, Pallabi, Kalyanpur and the Cantonment area. After office hours they have to cross the extremely busy road of Banani Chairmanbari. In the recent past a number of accidents took place. Crossing this road is very risky.

Good example

In the unforgettable year of 2009 (financially speaking!), the Democratic Party of Japan won a landslide in the general election, ending 50-long years of rule by the Liberal Democratic Party. The leader of the defeated Liberal Democratic Party, Taro Aso, said he took responsibility for his party's defeat and he would step down as the leader of the party so that someone else can get a chance to lead the party.

AIDS vaccine!

It is encouraging to learn from an USAID release dt. 4/9/2009 that USAID partner, International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI), has made a groundbreaking HIV/AIDS discovery that may bring the scientific community a bit closer to an HIV vaccine, The USAID and the IAVI have been in a cooperative agreement since 2006 to accelerate the discovery of an AIDS vaccine, The IAVI with the support of USAID has successfully tested over 1800 HIV positive individuals in several developing countries leading to the discovery of some highly effective antibodies that create immunity against many strains of HIV. Published recently in the journal Sciences, the finding will provide critical information that is, sure to shape vaccine research in the coming days.

Law and order

Deterioration of law and order is now a common phenomenon in our country. Every day we can find its trace in the dailies. Now it is a burning question. The outlaws are active. The whole country is witnessing snatching, dacoity, killing, plundering, encroachment, extortion by intimidation. These problems are increasing at an alarming rate.

International

US ME envoy seeks breakthrough

US envoy George Mitchell sought a deal on the thorny issue of West Bank settlements yesterday as he met Israel's prime minister in a bid to pave the way to resume stalled Middle East peace talks.

Afghan clashes, airstrike kill 27 Taliban militants

Afghan and foreign forces killed 27 Taliban militants in gunfights and an air strike in a rebel stronghold of Kandahar province, police and the government said Tuesday.

US to confront Iran over nuclear weapons claims

The US will confront Iran with accusations it is developing nuclear weapons in crunch talks next month between Tehran and six world powers, which are set to be held in Turkey, officials said yesterday.

Top Somali terror suspect killed in US raid

One of Africa's most wanted al-Qaeda suspects has been killed in a US raid in southern Somalia, the deputy mayor for security affairs in Somalia's capital said yesterday.

BJP gets something to cheer in by-polls

Reeling under parliamentary polls defeat and serious internal feud, India's main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party got something to cheer on Monday when it wrested six assembly seats from its main rival Congress in by-elections in Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh.

Pakistan urges India to share intelligence

Pakistan has once again urged India to share evidence regarding its claims that certain Pakistani terror groups are planning to carry out attacks across India once again.

UN official in Afghanistan leaves after vote row: UN

The senior American diplomat in the UN mission to Afghanistan has left the country after an argument with his European boss over how to deal with election fraud, officials said Tuesday.

One in 6 Mediterranean mammals face extinction

One in six Mediterranean mammals is threatened with extinction at the regional level, mainly due to the destruction of their habitat from urbanisation, agriculture and climate change, nature body IUCN said Tuesday in a new study.

China VP set to get military post in a step to the top

China's communist elite opened an annual conclave yesterday at which they are expected to appoint the vice president to a powerful military commission a move that would cement his status as heir to the presidency of the world's most populous nation.

Rahul joins austerity bandwagon

Following the footsteps of India's ruling Congress party president Sonia Gandhi who flew in the economy class of a commercial flight from Mumbai to Bangalore on Monday as part of an austerity drive, her son Rahul Gandhi followed suit yesterday travelling in the chair car of a super fast train shunning the executive class.

Gorilla King Titus dies in Rwanda

The world's most famous mountain gorilla Titus, aka the Gorilla King, has died at the age of 35, the Rwandan national parks office said yesterday.

Iraqi shoe thrower released from jail

The Iraqi journalist who threw his shoes at former President George W Bush was released Tuesday after nine months in prison, and he said Iraqi security forces tortured him with beatings, whippings and electric shocks after his arrest.

Arts & Entertainment

Loosening up on this festive occasion

Munmun Ahmed and Tamanna Rahman are two of the leading Bangladeshi classical dancers. The Daily Star talked to them to get an update on their Eid plans.

Gaanchil’s Eid offerings

On this Eid, Gaanchil is here with a range of new offerings. On September 13, the music company released seven albums -- "Brishtir Raat" featuring Naquib Khan; "Premer Manush Ghumailey Chaiyya Thakey," a solo video CD of Kumar Biswajit; "Hawar Gari," a folk album by Rinku; "Bondhu Ailana" by 2006 'Close Up 1' winner Salma; "Ontohin" duet by Elita and Mahadi; "Ki Jala," Hridoy Khan's latest album featuring Panna and "Ilshey Gurir Gaan" featuring the young singers from 'Channel i Khudey Gaan Raaj'.

Patrick Swayze (1952-2009): The ultimate romantic lead

Actor Patrick Swayze whose 20-month battle with advanced pancreatic cancer drew wide attention, died Monday. He was 57.

Rural dhaki in dire straits

Drumbeats or dhak (local drums) usher in the joyous four-day autumn festival of Durga Puja.

Eid fashion, according to up & coming designers

Thirteen up and coming designers, all students of Shahrukh Shahid, displayed their Eid-special designs at Drik Gallery in Dhanmondi over the last weekend.

Humayun Ahmed’s Bhalobasha on Channel i

TV play “Bhalobasha” will be aired on Channel i on Eid day at 7:50 pm. The play is written by Humayun Ahmed and directed by Gazi Mazharul Islam.

Special TV play on Banglavision.

TV play "A journey by love" will be aired on Banglavision on Eid day at 11:15pm.

Sir Elton John too old to adopt

Sir Elton John won't be able to adopt a 14-month-old HIV-positive child from Ukraine because the pop star is too old and is not married, a Ukrainian minister has said.

OP-ED

Meeting the shortfall

MAJOR primary commercial energies used in Bangladesh include natural gas, petroleum products, coal and hydro. 90% of Bangladesh's power generation is tied to indigenous natural gas, and urea production is also based on natural gas. Since 2001, Bangladesh has been unable to meet the demand for natural gas required by the power, fertilizer and industrial sectors and, at the same time, the gap between the generation capacity of electricity and demand has been widening. The situation has been worsening because of inability on the part of the government to act expeditiously. Its dependence on the bureaucracy of the energy sector for guidance, policy, planning and implementation is at the root of today's crisis.

Showing the way

I remember in the 1980s as a callow teenager meeting the great French political scientist Raymond Aron. He talked to me about the danger in politics of "benign neglect" -- good intentions being obviated by lack of focus. That is the danger we face today on climate change.

China's anonymity ban

MY geek friend in China is upset. The government in Beijing launched a tough set of new rules forbidding anonymous comments on Internet forums. (Somehow they guessed that PartyQueen_99 was not her real name.)


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