The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Friday, August 29, 2014


News of: Sunday, 25th of October, 2009

Front Page

Raise realistic fund for climate battle

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has called for establishing a realistic fund for Bangladesh and other least developed and developing countries for their climate change requirements.

Money now rules JMB recruitment

Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh is now providing money along with motivation to entice new recruits in the banned outfit.

Col Rashid's daughter held for blast link

Police yesterday arrested the eldest daughter of Lt Col (retd) Khandaker Abdur Rashid, a fugitive condemned to death in Bangabandhu murder case, for suspected links to Wednesday's bomb attack on Awami League lawmaker Fazle Noor Taposh.

Road shows mulled to woo investors

The government plans to stage road shows in London, New York and Singapore in early December to attract investors for several of its large power projects including 2,000-megawatt coal-fired power plants.

Shibir, BCL run amok in Ctg

Chittagong Medical College was closed indefinitely yesterday after a clash between Bangladesh Chhatra League and Islami Chhatra Shibir left at least 20 injured.

Nursing held hostage by a few culprits

A quarter with the help of Directorate of Nursing Services (DNS) is extorting and threatening nurses of transfers if they do not become members of yet to be formally contituted Diploma Nurses Association.

Grenade recovered

Security personnel recovered an unexploded grenade from the Rajbari Stadium in the town yesterday.

August 15 culprits attacked Taposh

Prime Minister and Awami League President Sheikh Hasina said those who were behind the August 15, 1975 tragedy, hurled bomb on Barrister Fazle Noor Taposh to kill him.

8 more bodies recovered

Eight more bodies were recovered from the Padma in Faridpur yesterday after a boat capsized on Friday.

Zia helped Rashid's family after killings

Late president Ziaur Rahman used to pay $100 a day to the family of Lt Col (retd) Khandaker Abdur Rashid as hotel expenses in Thailand following the assassination of Bangabandhu, Rashid's eldest daughter yesterday claimed.

Prosecute Rab men

The Bangladesh government should prosecute the Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) officers who arrested and tortured FM Masum, a journalist of the daily New Age, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said yesterday.

Jalil not quitting AL

Former Awami League general secretary Abdul Jalil last afternoon said no plan to detract him from the party would succeed.

Govt paving way for its fall

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia last night said the present government will have to step down before completing its tenure.

Ashraf warns AL men over extortion

LGRD and Cooperatives Minister Syed Ashraful Islam yesterday said the trial of Bangabandhu murder case is now at its fag end and after which the trial of war criminals would commence.

BCL factions clash at Salimullah Medical College

At least 20 students were injured and 12 rooms ransacked as two factions of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) clashed at a dormitory in the city's Sir Salimullah Medical College last night.

Call to save rivers

Environmentalist groups held different programmes yesterday demanding to free Buriganga river and other canals from grabbers and pollution and to cut green house gases and to ensure compensation to the people of coastal area.

Pak troops capture key militant town

Pakistan said yesterday it had captured Taliban chief Hakimullah Mehsud's hometown as the US demonstrated its support for the war on the Islamists with an air strike that killed 14 people.

UN to inspect atomic plant

UN inspectors will enter Iran's controversial second uranium enrichment plant today, two days after Tehran postponed its response to a UN deal on supplying the Islamic republic with nuclear fuel.

Six suspected militants held in Meherpur

Rapid Action Battalion and police yesterday arrested six youths at Amjhupi village of Meherpur Sadar upazila for suspected involvement with militant outfits.

Editorial

Assault on New Age reporter

THE Rapid Action Battalion authorities have formally expressed their regrets about the torture perpetrated on New Age reporter FM Masum last week. They have also let it be known that a committee has been formed to inquire into the incident and, based on the findings of the committee, appropriate punishment will be handed out to those responsible for the misdeed. We condemn the assault and want punishment meted out to the perpetrators.

Canal reclamation enters crucial phase

UNDER a composite campaign for freeing rivers and water bodies from the clutches of grabbers and polluters, a serious effort has got underway to reclaim canals lost to illegal occupancy and construction of all kinds over time. The land survey authority has, at long last, determined location of 43 derelict water channels and, moreover, identified individuals and institutions holding these in illegal possession.

In the face of evil syndicates …

THE CNG-driven auto-rickshaws are perhaps becoming still costlier for the hapless passengers. Their owners are pressing the government to agree to another bout of increase in the auto-rickshaw fares. The CNG-owners and drivers have their reasons to charge higher fares. But the users of the service (!) provided by these motorised, freewheeling three-wheelers do not enjoy any such privilege to get a better deal. They are, as it were, destined forever to be at the receiving end. They may flail about in despair, they may protest, curse and cry! It would be a cry in the wilderness. And at long last they will have to take it all lying down -- and literally so!

Secularism today

IN reviewing Charles Taylor's monumental book A Secular Age, Professor Richard Madsen explored three meanings of secularism. The political arrangement that makes the state neutral with regard to religious belief and the government's legitimacy does not depend on religion or the blessings of any particular religious community. The second, according to Madsen, was sociological, reflected in the widespread decline in religious belief by common people in any country. The third was cultural, "a move from a society where belief in God was unchallenged and indeed was unproblematic, to one in which it is understood to be one option among other, and frequently not the easiest to embrace."

Caught on the wrong foot

THAILAND has no literature, no painting and has an odd kind of music. Its architecture is monotonous and its interior decorations are hideous. Nobody can deny that gambling and golf are its chief pleasures. Thais are lewd and licentious."

Sports

Away games the key

Playing better outside the capital will be the key to deciding the title of the Bangladesh League, which gets underway today with holders Abahani facing newcomers Beanibazar SC at the Bangabandhu National Stadium.

Gold eludes archers

Hosts Bangladesh's lone hope of clinching a gold medal in the 5th Asian Archery Grand Prix went up in smoke when Emdadul Haq Milon was edged by narrowest of margins by Indian Tarundip on the final day of the meet at the Bangladesh Krira Shikkha Protisthan yesterday.

India hit by injuries

Injury doubts over captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and explosive batsman Yuvraj Singh hit India's preparations ahead of the first one-dayer against Australia here on Sunday.

Nat'l players can play domestic hockey

Bangladesh Hockey Federa-tion (BHF) yesterday decided in principle to allow the national players to play in domestic competitions in the face of constant demand from the clubs.

NSW has last laugh

Brett Lee starred with a stunning all-round performance as New South Wales beat Trinidad and Tobago to win the inaugural Champions League Twenty20, and with it a jackpot of 2.5 million dollars, in Hyderabad on Friday.

Wolves frustrate Villa

Wolverhampton striker Sylvan Ebanks-Blake kept his nerve to score the late penalty that earned a 1-1 draw against Aston Villa on Saturday.

Rafa's rallying cry

Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez believes Sunday's showdown with arch rivals Manchester United provides the perfect opportunity to stop his club's season spiralling out of control.

Wenger hungry as ever

Arsene Wenger celebrated his 60th birthday this week but the Arsenal manager's desire to end the club's four-year wait for a trophy shows no sign of abating.

SA appoint Parreira

World Cup hosts South Africa appointed Brazilian Carlos Alberto Parreira as coach for a second time Friday, national football association president Kirsten Nematandani said.

Zanetti keeps going

Inter Milan captain Javier Zanetti will wrack up 139 consecutive appearances dating back three years when he plays against Catania on Saturday night.

Friedrich rescues Bayer

German league leaders Lever-kusen were held to a 1-1 draw at home to midtable Borussia Dortmund on Friday with ex-Germany defender Manuel Friedrich heading a second-half equaliser for the hosts.

'Owen can handle flak'

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson insists that Michael Owen won't wilt in the Anfield pressure cooker when the former Liverpool striker lines-up against his old side on Sunday.

Atletico hire Flores

Struggling Spanish league side Atletico Madrid on Friday named Enrico Sanchez Flores as their new coach, taking over from Abel Resino who was sacked earlier in the day.

Brazil line up Oman

Brazil will face Oman on November 17 in Muscat, three days after playing England in another friendly in Qatar, local media reported here on Friday.

PSG duo tested for swine flu

Two players of Paris St Germain have undergone tests for swine flu, football officials said on Saturday casting doubts over Sunday's league game at Marseille.

Afridi backs skipper

Pakistan's Test and ODI vice-captain Shahid Afridi has quashed rumours about an ongoing rift with captain Younus Khan, and believes Younus is the ideal man to lead the team.

Moles steps down

New Zealand coach Andy Moles quit Saturday, New Zealand Cricket officials confirmed, ending a stand-off in which senior players had appealed for him to be sacked.

'Lost patience with Gibbs'

Mike Procter, South Africa's convener of selectors, has backed opener Herschelle Gibbs to bounce back after being dropped from the ODI and Twenty20 squads to face Zimbabwe and England at home next month. Procter explained that Gibbs's inconsistency had cost him his place and added that his omission will leave the door open for experimentation at the top of the order.

Rossi almost there

Italy's Valentino Rossi will launch his bid for a seventh MotoGP world title from pole position at the Malaysian Grand Prix after clocking a lap record in gruelling conditions on Saturday.

Jelena out of Kremlin

Defending champion and second seed Jelena Jankovic crashed out of the Kremlin Cup on Friday, the Serb defeated 6-4, 6-3 in the quarterfinals by local hope Alisa Kleybanova.

Div-I Cricket League

Ashraful Hossain scored 91 runs in 125 balls to give Motijheel T&T Club a 37-run win over Azad Sporting Club at the Jahangirnagar University Ground yesterday, on the opening day of this season's First division Cricket League. Ashraful's 91-run knock gave T&T a total of 203 before they restricted Azad Sporting to 166 in 46 overs, thanks to 3-wicket hauls from Md. Shukran and Rezwanul Islam.

DU emerge champs

Dhaka University emerged unbeaten champions of Inter-varsity Football Tournament beating Jahangirnagar University by 4-1 in the final at the Dhaka University Central Playground yesterday. Shahin scored twice for the victors while Topu scored one and the fourth was an own goal. Vice Chancellor of the Dhaka University Professor AAMS Arefin Siddiqui handed over the prizes among the winners after the match. A total of seven public universities took part in the tournament which was attended by a large number of spectators.

Business

Cox's Bazar airport set for expansion

The government has moved to expand the runway of Cox's Bazar airport, aiming to upgrade it to international standards and offer foreign holidaymakers a hassle-free trip to the world's longest unbroken sea beach.

Kamalapur ICD timing hurts exporters

A ban on container movement in Dhaka during daytime and the office timing of Inland Container Depot (ICD) at Kamalapur in the capital may impact the country's export earnings badly, exporters said.

CDBL looks to go public next year

Central Depository Bangladesh Limited (CDBL), which operates electronic share transactions centrally, now plans to go public soon after its annual general meeting in December.

German delegation arrives today

A 20-member German business delegation arrives in Dhaka today, the first visit of European shipbuilders to Bangladesh.

BB to inject Tk 200cr into housing scheme

Bangladesh Bank Housing Refinance Scheme, a popular housing project, is going to get Tk 200 crore in fresh fund, as it has nearly exhausted the entire amount of Tk 500 crore.

Developers eye 15pc growth next year

Bangladesh real estate sector has rebounded and is expected to achieve an impressive growth of 15 per cent in 2010, thanks to the government's supportive policy to help recover the sector even amid global recession.

Japan firms to develop small nuclear reactors

Japan's major nuclear reactor manufacturers have begun developing small nuclear power systems for both developed and emerging countries, a report said on Saturday.

WTO to rule on China-EU dispute over antidumping

The World Trade Organisation decided Friday to rule on a dispute between China and the European Union over anti-dumping measures imposed by Brussels on imports of China-made screws and bolts.

HSBC ranks high in cash management

HSBC Bangladesh has been voted the Best Domestic Cash Management Bank in the Euromoney Cash Management Poll 2009, the bank said in a statement.

Fed to toughen bank reviews

The Federal Reserve will step up its review of the capital adequacy of banks, using lessons learned during the so- called "stress tests" earlier this year, Fed chairman Ben Bernanke said yesterday.

Asian states look to 'lead world'

Asian leaders discussed plans at a major summit Saturday to "lead the world" by forming an EU-style community, while urging action from pariah states North Korea and Myanmar.

Innovation needed even in recessions

A theme is emerging from the flood of recent corporate earnings reports: Cost cuts are boosting profits.

Asian shares higher

Asian markets Friday bounced back from two days of losses as upbeat corporate results in the United States put investors back in a buying mood.

Wall Street eyes new catalyst

The earnings-driven rally of the past few weeks appears to have run out of steam on Wall Street, leaving the market in search of a new catalyst heading into the final stretch of 2009.

Weekly Currency Roundup

October 18th-October 22nd, 2009
International Markets

After hitting 14 month lows the past week, the US dollar recouped some of its losses, as risk appetite faded temporarily early in the week. However from midweek on comments by Bernanke and the BOE minutes the markets started selling the dollar heavily.

BGFCL earns over Tk 186cr

Bangladesh Gas Field Company Limited (BGFCL) earned Tk 186.56 crore in net profit in fiscal 2008-09.

Obama urges banks to unfreeze credit for small businesses

President Barack Obama urged US banks Saturday to unfreeze credit for small businesses, calling them "the engine" of the country's economy.

Hong Kong tightens lending on luxury homes

Hong Kong's government has announced measures aimed at cooling the property market as low interest rates have spurred a dramatic surge in prices and fears of a possible bubble.

US existing home sales surge 9.4pc

Existing US home sales surged 9.4 percent in September as consumers scrambled to take advantage of an expiring tax credit for first-time buyers, industry figures showed Friday.

'Worst over' for airlines, says industry chief

The head of the airline industry body IATA said on Friday that the tough conditions suffered by carriers hit by the global economic crisis were improving.

EXIM Bank gets new DMD

Abdul Latif Barabhuiya joined EXIM Bank Ltd as deputy managing director, says a statement release yesterday.

New country head for Bank Alfalah

SAA Masrur has taken over as the country head of Bank Alfalah Ltd, the bank said in a statement yesterday.

Metropolitan

Scrap decision to conduct CHT land survey

Speakers at a dialogue yesterday urged the CHT Land Commission to scrap its decision to conduct a land survey in Chittagong Hill Tracts without resolving the prevailing land disputes.

'Frame new law to halt export of oil, gas'

The National Committee to Protect Oil, Gas, Mineral Resources, Power and Ports yesterday demanded formulation of a new law to stop export of oil, gas and coal resources to foreign countries or companies.

CID trying to identify arms-carrying ship

The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of Police is now putting in all-out efforts to identify and locate the ship that carried the illegal consignment of arms to the Bangladesh water territory in 2004.

IT skills key to Digital Bangladesh

Materialisation of the dream for a digital Bangladesh depends on embracing computer technology, said State Minister for Science and ICT Yeafesh Osman yesterday.

Khokon, Mostafa president, secretary

Mahmudur Rahman Khokon and Mostafa Hossain Chowdhury were elected president and general secretary of Dhaka Reporters' Unity (DRU) Multi-Purpose Cooperatives Society yesterday.

US wants deeper ties with Bangladesh to fight militancy

The United States intends to deepen relations with Dhaka in combating terrorism in view of Bangladesh's growing exposure to "extremist groups", a US embassy spokesman said in the city yesterday.

Close aide to Babar held

Police arrested Atikur Rahman Bipul, a close aide of former state minister for home affairs Lutfozzaman Babar, in an extortion case from Uttara in the city on Friday.

Plan to make ADR system mandatory

The government is going to digitise the court records and case management systems to enable the lawyers and litigants to go instantly through the latest position of the cases by pressing a switch, said Law Minister Shafique Ahmed yesterday.

Resignation of home minister demanded

Several hundred Dhaka University students and teachers yesterday demanded resignation of Home Minister Sahara Khatun for her failure to stop repression on general people as well as journalists by law enforcement agencies.

Law for welfare of persons with disabilities soon: Azad

Information Minister Abul Kalam Azad yesterday said the government would create every opportunity for the welfare of persons with disabilities so that they could move freely on the roads and lead a dignified life in society, says a press release.

Call for removal of 'controversial judges'

Leaders of the Citizens Rights Movement yesterday called on the government to establish the rule of law by upholding the constitutionally enshrined principle that 'all are equal before the law'.

Hearing on appeals resumes today

The Supreme Court will resume hearing on the appeals in Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman murder case today.

Anti-militancy rally Nov 12

Shamprodaikota, Jongibad Birodhi Mancha (SJBM), a citizens' platform against militancy and communalism, will hold a mass procession and rally in the city on November 12 demanding stern actions against religious extremism.

Plot on to foil trial

LGRD and Cooperatives Minister Syed Ashraful Islam yesterday said anti-liberation and communal forces have again become active for thwarting the trial of Bangabandhu murder case.

Scientific approach in edn a must for development

Traditional education system is not capable of producing able citizens for tomorrow, said the speakers at a daylong workshop yesterday.

BTI organises apartment fair at Uttara

Building Technology and Ideas (BTI) Ltd organised a daylong 'Apartment Fair' at Uttara Sector-7 on Friday as a part of its promotional activities.

'Change behaviour, not climate'

Speakers at a programme on the occasion the International Day for Climate Action urged the people to change their behaviour to reduce the emission of carbon dioxide (CO2) to make a halt in rising of global temperature.

Call to enact law to control population explosion

Kashful, a platform of environment conscious people, formed a human chain with a demand of new law to control population explosion in the front of Fantasy Kingdom at Ashulia yesterday.

Attack on Unilever office

Two persons, including a business representative, were seriously injured by miscreants on Chandmari road in Gopalganj town yesterday.

Seminar on advanced patient care held

Apollo Hospitals Dhaka organised a scientific seminar titled 'Updates on advanced patient care management' at a local hotel in Khulna on Thursday, says a press release.

'Past societies were more stable'

The societies in the past were more stable than present, speakers yesterday said at the presentation ceremony of 'Shamunnay Monajatuddin Fellowship-1415'.

National

10 Patuakhali journalists intimidated, harassed

At least 10 journalists of Patuakhali district have faced intimidation and harassment including false cases by the ruling party men during the last one and a half months.

Atwary UNO sues 150 including UZ chairman

Atwary upazila nirbahi officer (UNO) Rashedul Hasan on Friday night sued 150 people identifying 21 of them, including the upazila (UZ) chairman, for Thursday's untoward incident in his office.

'Collaborators' of occupation forces threaten plaintiff

Ten alleged collaborators of Pakistani occupation forces have given death threat to a person who filed a case accusing them of killing his father and two brothers in 1971.

Erosion in C'nawabganj makes 100 families homeless

Over 100 families have become homeless in different villages of Sadar upazila due to erosion by the Padma.

8 workers hurt in factional clash

At least eight people were injured in a clash between two factions of the ruling party backed Matsya Sramik Union in front of Barisal Kotwali Police Station yesterday.

20,000 hectares uncultivated in Sirajganj for poor rain

About 20,000 hectares of farmland in nine upazilas of Sirajganj including the greater Chalan Beel area have remained uncultivated this year because of poor rainfall.

Rivals declare new convener of Magura BNP 'unwanted'

Intra-party feud in BNP Magura district unit has deepened as rival party men have declared new convener Kabir Murad “unwanted”.

Protest on in Katiadi

Thousands of people yesterday put up barricades on rail tracks at Manikkhali station under Katiadi upazila protesting inclusion of the upazila in the proposed Bhairab district.

Police deployed for safety of Madhabkunda tourists

A police team has been deployed for safety and peaceful stay of the tourists coming to enjoy the scenic beauty of Madhabkunda Eco Park in Baralekha upazila under Moulvibazar district.

2 Rasu's aides remanded

Two accomplices of self-confessed serial killer Rasu Khan have been placed on a four-day remand.

A different day at Gobindapur

It was a different scene at Gobindapur village under Haripur upazila in Thakurgaon district as thousands of Bangla speaking people from both sides of the border gathered to meet their near and dear ones on the occasion of Pathar Kali Mela Friday.

2 Shibir men held in Bogra

Police yesterday arrested two activists of Islamic Chhatra Shibir at Sariakandi upazila headquarters under Bogra district for their alleged involvement in anti-government activities.

Woman, daughter electrocuted

A woman and her daughter were electrocuted in Ramnagar area of the district town Friday night. The victims were identified as Mariam Begum and Tania. Locals said, 7-year-old Tania came in contact with the iron grills of their house which were electrified from short circuit at about 8:30pm. Mariam was also electrocuted as she tried to save her daughter.

Fugitive convict arrested

Police arrested a fugitive convict from Gosaiganj Kawla village in Domar upazila early Friday. Arrestee Zahidul Islam alias Zahid, 45, is son of late Zahiruddin of the village. Acting on a tip-off, a team of Domar police station raided the house of Zahid and arrested him late at night. Police said, Zahid was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment in an arms case and two years in a theft case in absentia a few years ago.

Kidnapped girl rescued

Police on Wednesday night rescued an abducted schoolgirl and arrested the kidnapper from Krishnakathi bypass crossing in Sadar upazila. Lima, 13, is a class VII student and daughter of one Kamal Hossain of the district town. Acting on a tip-off, a team of police raided a Mathbaria-bound bus at about 11pm and rescued Lima. They also arrested kidnapper Mojibur Rahman, 25, a resident of Kalabagan area of the town. Police said Mojibur abducted Lima from her school on Monday morning.

Tribal youth held

Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) in a drive on Thursday arrested a tribal youth along with 27 bottles of Indian liquor and cosmetics from Baromari border area of Nalitabari upazila. Arrestee Bakul Koach, 22, is son of Surendra Koach of Khalchanda village in the same upazila. Acting on a tip-off, the patrol team of 45 Rifles Battalion raided the area and arrested Bakul along with the liquor and cosmetics at about 8pm. He was handed over to local police. A case was also filed.

8 injured in N'ganj

At least eight people, including a woman, were injured in separate incidents in Araihazar upazila on Friday. In Baliapara village, a young man, Reaz, 30, was injured during a clash between two groups of villagers over gambling in the morning. In Bishnandi village, six people were injured as the members of two families clashed over a disputed land. Meanwhile, a woman, Shefali Rani Ghosh, was injured when a wall of local Safar Bhuiyan College collapsed on her. The injured were admitted to the upazila health complex.

Charge framing date deferred

A Chapainawabganj court on Thursday deferred the date for charge framing against 30 BDR men. The court also rejected their bail prayers and sent them to jail. Additional District and Sessions Judge Arup Kumar Goswami deferred the date when the prosecution lawyer prayed for extension of time. After hearing the prosecution, the court deferred the time and fixed the next date for charge hearing on November 11. The court rejected the bail prayers of 30 BDR men when defence lawyers sought bail. Officer in-charge of Sadar police station Ahsanul Haque on May 17 filed a sedition case against the jawans for their alleged involvement in the February 25-26 mutiny at Chapainawabganj battalion headquarters.

Hartal called in Bagaichhari

Leaders of Parbatya Bangali Chhatra Parishad (PBCP) has called a dawn-to-dusk hartal and threatened to paralyse river and land route in Bagaichhari upazila on October 27. The leaders of the Parishad announced the programme from a meeting held on Thursday at Marisya Bazar to protest killing of Motaleb Mia. The speakers alleged that Motaleb was killed by a group of criminals on September 2. But police are not arresting the culprits although Motaleb's wife filed a case accusing five people. They called upon police to arrest the killers before October 26, otherwise they would imposes more hartal in CHT.

11 hurt in Madaripur clash

Chhatra League and Jubo League workers yesterday attacked the leaders and workers of Chhatra Dal injuring 11 people in the municipality area under Shibchar upazila. The ruling party men allegedly swooped on an orientation meeting of upazila Chhatra Dal being held at the BNP office and beat up the rival party activists. The injured include Shahid Khan, 32, Mohin Bepari, 22, Shahin Madbar, 21, Enamul, 21, Shaon Chowdhury, 20, Rasu, 28, Amir Morol, 26, Azad, 34, Dulal Mina, 32, Rubel Madbar, 34 and William, 32. They were first admitted to Shibchar hospital. Later, four of them were shifted to Dhaka Medical College and Hospital (DMCH) in a critical condition. Additional police have been deployed to avoid further clash.

Letters

Garage your car!

The DS of 12 Oct was a milestone of sorts. My letter “Dhaka's Traffic Mess” was printed without a comma being edited out and then on the adjoining page, Dhaka University's Prof K Siddique-e- Rabbani's masterpiece “Taking Rickshaws off Increased Traffic Jam”, in which he has summarized in a short article what I have been barking at in the wilderness in 51 letters over the last two years as the best and immediate solution to our traffic problems. Mr Fazlul Haque's letter “Traffic in Dhaka” on the same page is also couched in the same vein. So Madam Prime Minister, Concerned Ministers, MPs, Experts on Traffic Management, Traffic Controllers, down to the humble, over-worked traffic cops, put away your 5 or 10 years and eternal plans for the freeways, monorails, Maglevs, STPs, DUTPs, and all other TPs, because now you have a blue print for the immediate solution that can be implemented tomorrow and which is equitable, just, fair, profitable and environmentally beneficial for all Dhakabashis and not just the privileged few.

International rivers

As reported in the press, the govt. of the Indian state of Assam is seriously concerned over the construction of a dam by China on the Yarlung Tsangpo River in Tibet, the source of the river Brahmaputra. If this dam is constructed and commissioned, it will terribly affect Assam and dry up the river Brahmaputra and other water resources downstream.

Cox's Bazar

Cox's Bazar is one of the largest sea-beaches and most beautiful spots in the world. Millions of foreigners and Bangladeshis visit this coastal town every year. The sea beach, Cox's Bazar town, and its adjoining areas have a lot of things to attract the tourists. For example, there are places like Himchhari, Maheskhali and St. Martin's. Miles of golden sands, surfing waves, colourful pagodas, delicious seafoods-- these are the specialities of Cox's Bazar.

Nobel Peace Prize

“Congratulations, Obama!” Everybody is saying this now, but not from the heart. Whether the prize has been awarded to the right person or not, it doesn't make any sense to those people who are dying in Sudan, Pakistan, or in Afghanistan. Obama himself realises that this prize is meaningless and that's why he said, “I don't deserve this”. His outstanding effort for planning extraordinary diplomatic practices and establishment of peace are yet not enough to achieve a Nobel Prize which has been achieved by Nelson Mandela and Aung San Suu Kyi. If the Nobel Committee had determined that they would award the peace prize to those who have some potential to bring peace in future, then they were supposed to give it to every person in this world because there can hardly be anyone who doesn't want peace. Now there is no doubt that the Nobel Committee and its prizes are deeply influenced by international politics. This is really disappointing and it proves that nothing is going to change.

SSF protection

We only hope that the government and their well-wishers have deliberated quite extensively before making such a law. We can see reason for two living daughters of founder president Sheikh Mujibur Rahman to be given the SSF cover. But their children live abroad, even have foreign wives. How the family is defined and to what dimension geographically and extended family wise over the next decades. This is not clear to us. Therefore, this law can be challenged in the court which would be most unfortunate because this might raise the question of security of Sheikh Hasina and Sheikh Rehana, when away from power, but they deserve to get it as long as they are alive.

Foreign minister's comment

It is absolutely shocking to hear our foreign minister quote the Burmese ambassador and take the situation lightly. Of course the Burmese ambassador and government will say the situation does not pose a threat to Bangladesh. But where on Earth do you see a country mobilising troops on such a scale along its neighbour's border for "exercise" alone? Has Burma run out of land to carry out military exercises?

Business schools

The current economic crisis is a transformational moment for business schools worldwide. The fact is that business schools have been off track, chasing precisely those Wall Street innovations that led to the current crisis. We need to get back to the basics of providing well-rounded education that emphasises real value and wealth creation, rather than focussing on areas that only propagate illusions of value.

Performing Hajj

Hajj or the pilgrimage is the fourth basic 'ibadat'. It is obligatory only on those who can afford it and that too only once in a lifetime.

Another failure?

We are passing through a very difficult time, the country is in total disarray, nothing is going as it should, oblivious to it, the government is busy experimenting with new ideas.

DST misunderstood

The daylight saving time decision to advance the BDST by 1 hour could have been a good decision for which it was intended. Many countries of the world, especially the countries of northern hemisphere, do that from last sat/sun day of March by advancing 1 hour and revert back to normal time on last sat/sun of October.

Barren JS

It looks very pathetic that the MPs are busy gossiping. Sometimes when we watch the JS proceedings we find that the arguments and counter arguments are so weak and irritating that we are forced to change the channel. The roles of the senior parliamentarians are very important here. But we don't see them joining the debate.

Why now?

A Dhaka court has recently issued a warrant to arrest former Awami League general secretary Abdul Jalil on charges of tax evasion. This came only nine days after he was dropped from the post of chairman of the parliamentary standing committee of the same party (for whatever reason).

First ten months

It was the crucial time before the ninth parliamentary election when the countrymen were very much anxious being unable to guess what would be the future political condition of the country and the future of their own.

Road at BSCIC area

Road communication from Tongi level crossing to BSCIC industrial area almost came to a standstill because of its deplorable condition. Anybody using the road with his vehicle for the first time will think twice before venturing for the second trip along the road for safety of his valuable transport from premature damage. As one of the busiest outlets from the mega city towards Narshingdi, Bhairab, Ashuganj, Maulvibazr, Sylhet, every day thousands of transports ply this road through Tongi BSCIC industrial area towards different destinations. There has been an under construction flyover over Tongi railway level crossing for the last three years, delayed completion of which now poses a great threat and risk to the road users and pedestrians. Who knows when the construction of the flyover will be complete to the great relief of commuters, pedestrians and vehicle users? Work progress on the flyover is going at a snail's speed but the authorities do not bother about the deteriorating condition of the road under the flyover which is the only alternate way to go to BSCIC and other places. Serious traffic gridlock is a regular phenomenon in this damaged road under the flyover. Incidents of breakdown of transports on the path holes of the road is also a regular feature which make the situation go from bad to worse every day. Instead of reducing public sufferings from traffic congestion with the construction of flyover, inordinate delay in completion of the same added more sufferings to the public.

Mobile operators

According to the recent statistics of the BTRC ( Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission), over 50 million people use mobile phone at present, which is more than a third of the country's total population. Anyhow, it cannot be denied that the cell phone operators are trying heard to serve the subscribers since their operation began. They often make special lucrative offers and it is notified via media blitz. However, it is a matter of great regret that when those offers are called off, it is not notified even by a single sms or any notification.

DST in our context

Thanks for the article by Kazi Mahbub Hasan on the above subject published on 17.10.2009 in The Daily Star. I would like to add some more points:

Ads infringing on our values

We would like to voice a joint protest to a new trend in advertising, billboards, magazine and newspaper features that is becoming increasingly prevalent and common these days. That is the new trend of showing female models- or even male models - in increasingly revealing and provocative clothing and images. We would like to ask the promoters of this new culture what exactly it is that they are trying to advocate in way of values, mores and philosophy to our new and young generations.

International

Asean asks Myanmar to conduct fair elections

Southeast Asian leaders, having launched the region's first human rights watchdog, called yesterday on military-ruled Myanmar to conduct free and fair elections next year but refrained from criticising one of the world's worst human rights offenders.

Taliban vow to disrupt Afghan run-off vote

Taliban fighters warned Afghans not to take part in the war-wracked country's upcoming presidential runoff, threatening yesterday to launch a fresh wave of violence on polling day to stop them.

Taliban reprisals won't halt army offensive: Gilani

Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has vowed that the military offensive in South Waziristan would continue until its logical conclusion despite the Taliban's continuous effort to create havoc across the country and derail the civilian government.

Iran intensifies pressure on Pakistan to hand over Jundallah chief

Iranian Interior Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar has asked Pakistan to immediately hand over Abdolmalek Rigi, the chief of the militant Sunni Muslim group Jundullah, to Tehran, saying the country's intelligence officials have sufficient evidence to prove his presence in Pakistan.

Zardari extends olive branch but Sharif smells ulterior motives

Ahead of their scheduled meeting tomorrow, Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari conveyed to PML-N leader Nawaz Sharif that he is ready to abolish the 17th Amendment and implement the Charter of Democracy (CoD), but the former prime minister has expressed serious doubts over the PPP chairman's intentions.

Obama offers millions in Muslim tech fund

The White House Friday highlighted a new multi-million-dollar technology fund for Muslim nations, following a pledge made by President Barack Obama in his landmark speech to the Islamic world.

Algae may be secret weapon in climate change war

Driven by fluctuations in oil prices, and seduced by the prospect of easing climate change, experts are ramping up efforts to squeeze fuel out of a promising new organism: pond scum.

Abbas calls Palestinian elections for Jan 24

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas on Friday called presidential and legislative elections for January 24 in the Palestinian territories including the Gaza Strip, in a move seen as pressuring Hamas into signing a unity deal.

India, China avoid Arunachal, vow to build better ties

India and China yesterday pledged not to let their differences derail bilateral relations as Prime Ministers Manmohan Singh and Wen Jiabao held a much-awaited meeting here amid strained ties.

US to help Iraq get rid of sanctions

Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and US envoy to the UN Susan Rice held talks in Baghdad Friday on helping Iraq get rid of sanctions imposed in the aftermath of Saddam Hussein's 1990 invasion of Kuwait, Maliki's office said.

Obama hits out at climate 'naysayers'

US President Barack Obama on Friday hit out at naysayers he blamed for peddling "cynical" claims that global warming is a myth to derail a landmark climate change bill in Congress.

Crisis talks collapse in Honduras

Talks to resolve the political crisis in Honduras have collapsed over the de facto government's refusal to reinstate ousted president Manuel Zelaya.

US mulls direct talks as N Korean envoy visits

The US State Department is considering a rare face-to-face meeting with a North Korean envoy visiting the United States, raising hopes of progress in stalled nuclear talks.

Merkel forms new govt

German Chancellor Angela Merkel yesterday announced a new, center-right government with the Free Democrats, saying the coalition will "bravely solve the problems that are lying ahead of us."

US probes pilots who overshot airport by 150 miles

US aviation officials and the FBI probed Friday how pilots of an airplane with 149 people aboard managed to overshoot their destination by 240km, prompting fears of a hijacking.

Bus crash kills 10 in Venezuela

At least 10 bus passengers were killed and another 12 injured Friday when their vehicle collided with a truck on a main freeway in the Venezuelan capital, rescue officials said.

Two shot dead in Thai south

Suspected Islamic militants shot dead two men in separate attacks Saturday in Thailand's troubled south, police said.

Being fat can fry up chances of becoming a dad

An Australian research has shown that overweight men are less likely to father children.

Dogs 'don't understand deception'

There is no evidence to prove that dogs can detect deception, says a new study.

Arts & Entertainment

A decade of Rock ‘n’ Roll

Artcell, one of the leading rock bands of the country, celebrated its 10th anniversary on October 23 with a grand concert titled '10 Years of Artcell In-sanity'. The concert was held at Winter Garden, Dhaka Sheraton Hotel.

The lure of bansuri

According to mythology, 'bansuri' (South Asian transverse alto flute) is intimately linked to the love story of Krishna and Radha. Legends narrate how the tunes of bansuri would drive the women of Braj into a frenzy.

Return of a showman

Last Friday evening at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC), Sonu Niigaam's magnetic presence marvelled the crowd. This young artist had received wide recognition not only in India but also in other South Asian countries. With his amazing voice that has a pure classical touch, Sonu can belt out virtually any song -- be it pop, jazz or rock. The singer has fans of all sorts and all ages. He was in Dhaka last year.

Bonhishikha’s tribute to S.D. Burman

As a homage to Sachin Dev Burman, cultural organisation 'Bonhishikha' held a two-day 'Sangeet Utshab' (music festival) at Shawkat Osman Memorial Auditorium, Central Public Library. Artistes form Bangladesh and Tripura, India performed songs of Burman at the event. The Tripura team was led by Goutam Das.

A new venue for art lovers

On October 23, a graphic art studio 'Cosmos-Atelier 71' was formally opened at Cosmos Centre, Malibagh in the city. The studio has been specially designed for printmaking. The studio is open to all. Print machines are rare in Dhaka. Promising printmakers had been eagerly waiting for this opportunity. Various prints that are popular among Bangladeshi artists are etching, aquatint, litho, lino, silk print, wood engraving, macho print etc.

OP-ED

How much is a human life worth?

A few days ago a news item caught my attention. It was reported that workers in the ship breaking industry receive little or no compensation for injury or death at the workplace. I also read on a website on Bangladesh that, "only a nominal amount of compensation is given and often only when there is public pressure." If this is the state of affairs in this large industry, one can surmise that the situation is not much better in other medium and small-scale industries in Bangladesh. Most of us would probably agree that this needs to change and the sooner the better.

Improving the Doing Business ranking

DESPITE several successful reforms last year, Bangladesh has slipped a few places in the latest Doing Business ranking. Why? We were unable to reform as fast as other countries such as Rwanda.

Now Pakistan -- the sequential destruction of Muslim nations

A conspiratorial view of the world is frequently inaccurate, exposing more the paranoia of the view rather than the reality of the world. The sequential destruction of Muslim nations -- Palestine, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan (and Iran is on the list) -- may or may not be a conspiracy hatched in Washington D.C., but it is becoming an international reality. It is no secret that the United States and Europe, with varying degree of mutual cooperation and some make-believe internal discord, superintend the sequential destruction of Muslim nations. This War of Sequential Destruction (WSD), despite Nobel-Laureate Barack Obama's denials, refuses to go away.


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