News of: Saturday, 7th of November, 2009
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Bangladesh is set to officially release three flood-tolerant rice varieties that would help farmers prevent up to a million tonnes of annual crop loss caused by flash floods, researches said.
BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia smells provocation of competitor foreign countries behind the persistent unrest in the readymade garment sector (RMG).
The Criminal Investigation Department yesterday sent detained former state minister for home Lutfozzaman Babar to the Taskforce for Interrogation (TFI) cell for quizzing in the August 21 grenade attack case.
Three suspected Lashkar-e-Taiba leaders, arrested with links to a plot to attack the US embassy in Dhaka, were placed on a two-day remand yesterday.
The victims of cyclone Aila in the worst-affected Shyamnagar and Ashashuni upazilas see no immediate respite from their sufferings as it will take a few more months to start repairing the major breaches on the damaged embankments.
Lawmakers from coastal constituencies formed "Bangladesh Climate Change Action Group" yesterday in a move to address the adverse impact of climate change.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has called for closer fraternity among the South Asian countries to fight poverty and tackle threats posed by climate change as she described the two as “common enemies” of the region.
After nearly nine years of refraining from drilling any exploratory well, US oil giant Chevron along with British company Cairn is set to drill an well in Patuakhali in search of oil or gas, preparation for which begins in February next.
The move to ban 13 splinter groups of underground communists taken by the caretaker government is shelved, although the police headquarters strongly recommended it last year.
Two top Ulfa leaders have surrendered to the Border Security Force (BSF) in Tripura and will be handed over to Assam police soon, a top BSF official said yesterday.
President Zillur Rahman left for Turkey yesterday on a six-day visit to attend COMCEC economic summit under the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC).
Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) observes the National Revolution and Solidarity Day today marking the civil-military "uprising" that led to release of then army chief Ziaur Rahman on this very day in 1975.
Prothom Alo, the county's largest circulated Bangla daily, observed its 11th founding anniversary yesterday.
Four people, including a BNP leader, were killed as a bus rammed their private car on Dhaka-Barisal Highway at Maligram in Bhanga upazila yesterday.
The suspected women cadres of outlawed parties in Kushtia have gone into hiding following a special drive started on Wednesday to arrest them.
An alleged criminal and an outlaw were killed in separate 'shootouts' between their cohorts and law enforcers in the capital and Kushtia early yesterday.
Over a hundred affected landowners of Chunkutia under Keraniganj on the capital's outskirts yesterday placed signboards of ownership on the lands being filled up by Bashundhara Group for a housing project.
Former divisional forest officer (DFO) of Sundarbans Forest Division Md Asaduzzaman has been sued for acquiring wealth and property beyond his source of income.
Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) has issued licence to 143 companies since January to generate 797 MW of power, State Minister for Energy, Power and Mineral Resources Mohammad Enamul Haque told the House Thursday.
Dr Mahmud Hasan and Dr Sharfuddin Ahmed have been unofficially elected president and secretary general of Bangladesh Medical Association (BMA).
A Bangladeshi girl was shot dead by Indian Border Security Force yesterday at Roumari border of the district.
Pakistan's military said yesterday that its forces had stormed into yet another Taliban stronghold and killed 28 militants and five troops during a major ground and air offensive about to enter its fourth week.
An army psychiatrist about to be sent to Iraq gunned down 13 people and wounded 30 in a rampage on a huge Texas military base but survived after being shot four times himself.
WITHIN 48 hours of arresting Kushtia town Mohila Awami League general secretary Taslima Khan Ankhi and her accomplice Rani, police on Thursday held Nahid Parvin Champa, a suspected woman cadre of outlawed Gano Mukti Fouz (GMF). They are all linked to the clandestine organisation.
IN spite of being arrayed against adversities, remittance flows into the country have been on the growth path. It is the rate of increase that has been subject to fluctuations but not growth as such. On top of this, we now have a definitively positive piece of news in that the WB's projections of a reduced remittance growth for the current fiscal are already being assailed if the figure for the first four months of the current fiscal is any guide. The growth of inflow stood at 21.23 percent during July to October and there is cautious optimism about outlook for economic recovery in the host countries possibly brightening up in the remainder of the year.
SWEDEN, as the current president of the European Council, organised the fourth European Development Days program in Stockholm in the fourth week of October. Many important dignitaries from the international arena participated including several heads of state and heads of government such as Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. I was also there as adviser to International IDEA, a Swedish NGO associated with democracy-building and good governance.
WHILE a debate has been going on about the new education policy, its different objectives and process of implementation, no attention has been given to taking measures in regard to raising the standard of English teaching and learning in our schools. People wonder whether this country, with such a vulnerable economy, can afford the colossal expenditure (Tk.31 thousand crore) for extending the primary level up to class eight in about 80 thousand primary and 19 thousand secondary level schools that are almost in a shambles.
Bangladesh maintained their supremacy over Zimbabwe as they came from behind to seal the five-match series 4-1 thanks to their slow bowlers who played the key role behind the success.
Arambagh KS held Sheikh Russel KC to a 2-2 draw in an exciting encounter of the Bangladesh League at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.
Brendon McCullum played an immaculately constructed 131 to lead New Zealand to 303 for 8 at the Sheikh Zayed stadium in Abu Dhabi, and gave them a serious chance to level the series in the second one-dayer against Pakistan yesterday.
Newcomers Khelaghar Samaj Kalyan Samity have brought a serious allegation against the match officials and threatened to boycott the ongoing Premier Cricket League if they get no justice from the Cricket Committee of Dhaka Metropolis (CCDM) regarding to their Duckworth-Lewis loss against Kalabagan KC.
Bangladesh suffered third consecutive defeat in the AFC U-19 Championship qualifiers when they conceded a 3-0 defeat to Thailand at the Thai-Japanese Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand yesterday.
The 3rd Deputy Commi-ssioner Gold Cup football tournament begins today at Khagrachhari Stadium in the hill district.
Young Pegasus beat Motijheel T&T Club by 12 runs in an exciting match of the First Division Cricket at the Jahangirnagar University Ground yesterday.
Bangladesh's equivalent of the Ryder Cup tees-off at the Kurmitola Golf Club in Banani today with a team of Europeans up against a team from the Rest of the World.
Dav Whatmore has been confirmed as the new coach of Kolkata Knight Riders, filling in the vacancy left by the sacking of John Buchanan after IPL 2009. His appointment was part of a team management overhaul: the franchise also recalled Sourav Ganguly as captain, named Wasim Akram as their mentor, signed on Vijay Dahiya, the former India wicketkeeper and Delhi coach, to assist Whatmore, while retaining Andrew Leipus as physiotherapist and Adrian Le Roux as physical trainer.
Mohammad Asif, the Pakistan fast bowler, who is hoping to play his first Test in more than two years later this month has vowed to make up for lost time due to several drug-related controversies. Asif, 26, has been named in Pakistan's squad for the three-Test series against New Zealand, which starts November 24.
Fulham compromised their hopes of advancing in the Europa League on Thursday when Roma came from behind to win 2-1 in Italy, the English Premiership side ending the Group E contest with nine men, while Everton slumped 2-0 at home to Benfica.
An in-form Didier Drogba is capable of ruffling the feathers of even the most confident defences.
Champions Inter Milan host AS Roma at the San Siro at the weekend while AC Milan travel to the capital to take on Lazio as the Serie A title race reaches a key stage.
Real Madrid captain Raul Gonzalez accepts that he is likely to find himself on the bench for the derby clash with local rivals Atletico Madrid on Sunday.
Coach Louis van Gaal has admitted a few sleepless nights ahead of Bayern Munich's Bundesliga clash with Schalke 04 on Saturday in the wake of their Champions League defeat at home to Bordeaux.
Patrick Vieira has failed to impress France coach Raymond Domenech, who left the Inter Milan midfielder out of his squad for two World Cup qualifying playoff matches against the Republic of Ireland.
International sport's top court on Friday suspended a transfer ban imposed on Chelsea while it rules on a dispute over the signing of French youngster Gael Kakuta.
New coach Carlos Alberto Parreira says struggling 2010 World Cup hosts South Africa can defy the odds and reach the quarterfinals.
Real Madrid's Portuguese star Cristiano Ronaldo will be out of action for at least another two weeks, the club said Thursday, after a doctor in Amsterdam examined his injured ankle.
Fiorentina's Romania captain Adrian Mutu is to undergo an operation after injuring knee ligaments in Wednesday's 5-2 Champions League rout of Debrecen, his club said Thursday.
Australian captain Ricky Ponting on Friday lauded Indian master Sachin Tendulkar even as the injury-plagued world champions celebrated a brilliant one-day win.
Novak Djokovic clinched the most comprehensive victory of his career on Thursday when he humiliated Czech journeyman Jan Hernych 6-0, 6-0 to reach the Swiss Indoors quarterfinals.
Signs are emerging that Pakistan is pushing to normalise cricketing relations with India, after the meeting last week between PCB chairman Ijaz Butt and officials within the BCCI in India and, in the absence of any likely bilateral series, it appears the IPL's third season could be the icebreaker. Pakistan's board has cleared its players for the tournament, reversing a decision it took for the second season, and has received inquiries from the IPL on the status of its players.
Swashbuckling all-rounder Shahid Afridi Friday hoped his more responsible approach to batting and effective bowling help Pakistan defend the World Twenty20 title and win the 2011 World Cup.
Andre Agassi has pleaded for compassion from critics over his taking of crystal methamphetamine, saying he "needed help" to fight depression in 1997.
The certificate awarding ceremony of the ACC (Asian Cricket Council)/CA (Cricket Australia) Level III Coach Education Course was held at the Dhaka Sheraton Hotel yesterday. Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) President AHM Mustafa Kamal handed over certificates to the participants of this elite course for cricket coaches.
Bangladesh Muktijoddha Sangsad emerged unbeaten champions in the Philosophia 2nd Division Chess League after the ninth and final round of matches at the Bangladesh Chess Federation Hall Room yesterday.
Khelaghar Samaj Kalyan Samity announced a nine-member cricket committee with Billal Hossain as chairman. Hasib Khan was named the general secretary of the committee.
Rotaract Club, a debating organization of Rajshahi University (RU) organised a friendship cricket mach on the occasion of its reunion yesterday.
The government will be able to solve the power and energy crisis by increasing the production and the reserve within two years, Power and Energy Adviser to the Prime Minister Dr Taufiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury said yesterday.
The United States expressed happiness over the present government's development activities on poverty alleviation, economic progress and maintaining socio-economic stability in the country.
Citizen's Initiatives on Cedaw, a platform of 38 human rights and development organisations, yesterday demanded full implementation of the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (Cedaw).
Agitating people laid a siege to Piragachha Police Station and upazila health complex in Rangpur for about ten hours and confined an assistant superintendent of police and a magistrate to the health complex following the death of an accused in the police custody on Thursday night.
Bangladesh Noujan Sramik Federation, a coalition of the unions of water transport workers, threatened to go on strike from Sunday midnight to press home their 22-point demand.
Ruling party men assaulted an engineer of Roads & Highway Department in Panchagarh on Thursday as he did not help them win a tender contract for the construction of a bridge.
The first year admission test for the academic session 2009-10 at Chittagong University (CU) begins tomorrow.
Notre Dame College, one of the renowned colleges in the country, celebrated its 60th anniversary with colourful programmes amid festivity and much enthusiasm yesterday, sending a message that the college is still vibrant in its 60th year.
Australia's Ambassador for Counter-Terrorism (CT) Bill Paterson will arrive in Dhaka today on a three-day visit to discuss issues of cooperation regarding counter-terrorism with the ministers and senior government officials.
Information Minister Abul Kalam Azad yesterday said the four national leaders could have saved their lives if they had compromised with Bangabandhu's killer Khandaker Moshtaque Ahmed.
Bangladesh International Tutorial (BIT) gave away awards to its 23 students yesterday for their outstanding academic performances in O (ordinary) level and A (advanced) level examinations this year.
Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid on Thursday said Islamic as well as madrasa education will not face any obstacle if the new education policy is implemented.
British American Tobacco Bangladesh launched its 'Primary healthcare services' for farmers in Lalmonirhat yesterday.
Bangladesh Paribesh Andolon (Bapa) yesterday formed a human chain at Shahbagh demanding steps to protect the Baro Katra from encroachment and to preserve it.
To strengthen the existing bonds of friendship between the peoples of India and Bangladesh, the government of India has agreed to extend support for construction of a new Rath (chariot) for Sree Sree Jashomadav Mandir at Dhamrai in Dhaka.
A total of 25,056 hajj pilgrims have reached Jeddah as the first batch of pilgrims flew for Saudi Arabia on October 21, says a press release on Thursday.
Amra Muktijoddhar Santan on Thursday called on the countrymen to observe November 7 as the Freedom Fighters Killing Day, says a press release.
The secretary general of Jica Alumni Associations' Forum of Saarc Countries (JAAFSC) Md Ejar Uddin called on Foreign Minister Dipu Moni at the Foreign Ministry on Thursday, says a press release.
A 10-day book fair titled 'Hemanta Boi Mela 1416' began on the Public Library premises in the city on Thursday.
A BCL faction of Sir Salimullah Medical College unit demanded withdrawal of the suspension of studentship of 15 students for their involvement in a clash at the college hostel on October 24.
The four-day regional border conference between the border forces of India and Bangladesh ends in Sylhet city today.
Speakers at a condolence meeting yesterday paid rich tributes to former finance minister and veteran political leader M Saifur Rahman.
BNP Secretary General Khandaker Delwar Hossain yesterday condemned the incident of vandalism at BNP office in Barisal and demanded punishment to those who were involved with the incident.
Iran is preparing to give the International Atomic Energy Agency more details of its response to proposals from the major powers for the supply of nuclear fuel, Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said yesterday.
Union Home Minister P Chidambaram yesterday confirmed there was a definite Pakistani link to the terror plot uncovered by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in the US but said Indian security forces were capable of thwarting any attack.
The United Nations General Assembly approved a resolution endorsing a UN report calling for both Israel and Palestine to carry out independent investigations of possible war crimes committed in the Gaza Strip during last winter's conflict.
The UK government says it is highly unlikely that a new legally binding climate treaty can be agreed this year - and a full treaty may be a year away.
Fearing that a gunman who killed 13 people at a military facility in Texas may have been Muslim, US Islamic groups braced themselves for a public backlash against the faith on Thursday.
The international community will seek fresh agreement with Afghan President Hamid Karzai's new government, Nato chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen told AFP, warning that the administration would have to prove it was credible.
A new research by scientists has confirmed that the organic matter needed for the origin of life could have been delivered to Earth through meteoritic impacts early in Earth's history.
Chancellor Angela Merkel has reminisced about how she was taking a sauna 20 years ago as thousands of fellow East Germans surged through breaches in the Berlin Wall.
The UN commission probing the former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto's assassination case has asked the government to arrange a meeting with the former President General Musharraf and several other top military officials.
Arts & Entertainment
A four-day regional seminar on theatre education opened at Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) yesterday morning. The event has been arranged by Bangladesh centre of the International Theatre Institute (ITI), in cooperation with BSA. The endeavour is supported by UNESCO.
As part of its commitment to performing arts, one of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy's (BSA) major activities is to produce theatre plays every year. Unfortunately however, since its inception in 1974, the state organisation has only produced four plays.
Karigar staged its second production “Joljuddho” at Studio Theatre Hall, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) on November 4 and 5.
A daylong programme, featuring 'jhapan khela' (snake charming), 'jatrapala' and 'lathi khela', were held at Goalbaria Bhaina in Magura sadar upazila last Thursday.
Boishakhi Natya Goshthi staged the play "Kamol Kumar" at Kobi Jasim Uddin Hall in the town recently.
Irish rockers U2 returned to Berlin for a free mini-concert Thursday in front of the Brandenburg Gate, playing its classic singles and a duet with Jay-Z even as the show was obscured from public view by a nearly 6-1/2-foot (two-meter) high metal barrier.
A book titled, "Ekattur-er Ekjona O Aunnanno Golpo" -- highlighting the Liberation War -- was unveiled in Panchagarh recently.
In light of the established scientific consensus there is little doubt that the current climate crisis is anthropogenic, as opposed to what Sarah Palin tried to sell to the world during the last US presidential election. When we see the rapid melting of the North Pole glaciers, the sea-level rising, repetitious flooding in all parts of the world, food shortages, drought and cyclones hitting everywhere in a vicious cycle affecting millions, it is clear that Mother Nature returns to us with a vengeance again and again.
Let us analyse in brief some hall-mark events that had already moulded the policy of the three countries in the sub-continent vis-à-vis terrorists' threats.
Traffic congestion in the city has become a menace causing untold suffering to people. Concerned authorities have been observed to be taking some measures, but ironically, these measures are failing and creating more problems.
Climate negotiators from around the world gathered in Bangkok recently (28 September to 9 October, 2009) to advance talks towards a treaty for post-Kyoto regime -- 2012 under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). The Bangkok talk was a part of a series of five major negotiating sessions leading up to the UN Climate Conference in Copenhagen in December, which will be further encrypted with pre-Copenhagen session in Barcelona (2-6 November 2009).
One of the UK's best known scientists, Professor James Lovelock, says only a catastrophe will prompt the world to tackle the threat of climate change seriously. He also said: "In the late 1930s when I was a student we knew that war was imminent, but there was no clear idea of what to do about it. We think that something unpleasant may soon happen but we are still as confused over what to do about it as we were in 1938.Our response so far is just an attempt to appease. The Kyoto agreement is uncannily like that of Munich, with politicians out of show that they do response but in reality are bidding for time."
Now all conscious people know at least some common consequences of global warming, the first and foremost being melting of glacier and sea level rise as its result. Mountains occupy 24% of the global surface area and are home to 12% of the world's population (ICIMOD, 2008). Mountain regions of this planet are not only vulnerable to climate change but also areas to visualize the impact of climate change since measuring the melting snow caps helps us understand the glacial retreat rate linked with climate change. The superb example of this is the Hindu Kush-Himalayan (HKH) region.
Shihab Sarkar's place in Bengali literature in our times is a reality. It was in the early 1970s that his poetry, as that of many others, took off. Since those heady days of post-liberation Bangladesh, Sarkar has come a long way. On an afternoon dipping into twilight last week, Shihab Sarkar spoke to Star Literature of his dreams and passions, of his fears and his hopes. Here is the report:
Ambia could never think of it. Never ever. This is absurd. How can things come to such a strange pass? How can a woman be yoked to a plough together with a cow? It's quite unthinkable! Unimaginable! But facts prove stranger than fiction in Ambia's life. She herself is doing what was even beyond her wildest dream. She is pulling one end of the yoke with the cow at the other. She is trying to keep pace with the front feet of the cow. The yoke on the rugged neck of the cow and in the crook of her arms is failing to maintain enough equilibrium to pull the plough, causing inconvenience to both the woman and the cow. The cow turns her head and looks at her strange counterpart with large moist eyes. Ambia tries to ease the cow. She is big with young. Ambia's husband Kasem is guiding the plough from behind. The curved blade of the plough is digging and turning over the soil. Long furrows are being left behind.
The second session of Shakespeare Study Circle, Bangladesh (a literary organization of the Department of English and Humanities, University of Liberal Arts, Bangladesh), was held on 29 October 2009 in the University Board Room with Professor Mohit Ul Alam, Head of DEH, presiding.
A pet cat ought to be buried
again and again.
Every time you fill its
grave with earth, sand, gravel
it scratches up through the layers
to wriggle itself out in the open.
Then at night you find your cat
pussyfooting in the bedroom
or sitting stoned, eyes wide open,
on your high wardrobe.
Cats beckon peace and solitude
When they're alive,
Many see in them bad omens,
Many never know the feline magic.
dead cats are a nightmare,
Tell me why ---
A strong urge prompts you and me
to bury them with so much love.
But we cannot.
Health and safety is always a big concern of about 3 million Muslims who have already started and will travel to Saudi Arabia within a few days to perform the holy Hajj. One must be in good health, not only to perform Hajj and Umrah but also to make maximum use of the opportunity to make as much prayer as possible. The more physically fit one is, the easier it would become to perform the many rituals that a complete Hajj include. The following is a guideline to follow during performing Hajj which must be accompanied by your own doctor's advice pertaining to your health needs.
With the advancement of medical technology, use of improved imaging equipment like Computed Tomography (CT) scan, X-ray, CT Angiogram, heart scan have raised manifolds. But experts are concerned that the growth in imaging use could be exposing patients to too much radiation raising the risk of various adverse health effects especially deadly cancers.
Antibiotics do not fight infections caused by viruses, like colds, flu, most sore throats and bronchitis, and some ear infections. Rest, fluids, and over-the-counter products may be your or your child's best treatment option.
Worried about what to do with fat you have had liposuctioned from pudgy areas? Researchers have turned it into stem cells in the lab, but here is a more immediate use: Fat liposuctioned from other parts of the body can safely be used to increase a woman's breast size, according to study findings presented recently at the Plastic Surgery 2009 meeting in Seattle.
A diet high in salt or artificially sweetened drinks increases the risk of kidney function decline, two studies show.
Smokers who switch to a low-tar, light or mild brand of cigarette will not find it easier to quit and in fact may find it harder, researchers reported recently.
PAKISTAN is descending into ever-increasing chaos and violence with no end in sight. Things were looking better about a month back with the army operation winding down in Swat and the IDPs returning to their homes. Pakistan Army's operational success in Swat and Malakand and the killing of Baitullah Mehsud, the Head of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in a US drone attack appeared to signal a turning point on the war against the FATA militants. However, the euphoria was short-lived. Hakimullah Mehsud, Baitullaha's successor, is proving to be an even more aggressive and audacious terrorist. The attacks on the GHQ, the heart of Pakistan military, and a few days later in the PAF Base, Kamra proved that the Taliban can plan and execute a complex suicide attack at a time and place of their own choosing. More worrying signs are the emerging entente between the Taliban and other militant organizations, such as the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP). Once nurtured by the Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) to conduct terrorist operations in Kashmir and elsewhere in India, they are now increasingly turning against their mentor since the government, under increasing external pressure, clamped down on their operations. The new coalition called “Punjabi Taliban” could make the task of combating insurgency even more difficult now that the Punjabi dominated Army will be fighting in their backyard with people from their own linguistic clan.
MARITIME strategy is the set of principles that govern a maritime war, in which the sea is a substantial factor. Naval strategy is but that part of national strategy which determines the movement of the fleet, in time of war. Maritime strategy determines how and what part of the fleet must be engaged in relation to the land and air strategy.
ON 21 October 2009 negotiations over Iran's nuclear programme wrapped up in Vienna. Terms such as “breakthrough” and “victory” were prematurely used to describe the International Atomic Energy Agency's (IAEA) preliminary agreement with Iran. The agreement was seen as a way to assuage international concerns over Iran's nuclear intentions and prove a substantial vindication of President Barack Obama's engagement policy. Even before the international optimism has settled in, the wariness has begun to creep in. How distant has the attempt to build cooperation is a question that may only be answered if the Iranian leadership accepts the proposed agreement in its entirety and after the IAEA inspectors complete their inspection of the recently discovered clandestine nuclear enrichment facility near the city of Qum.
Star Books Review
Studies of various aspects of Rabindranath Tagore are legion, and a fair proportion of them deal with his achievement as a lyricist and composer. One of the best-loved critical studies in Bengali, Abu Sayeed Ayub's Pantha Janer Shakha (The Traveller's Friend) analyses this aspect of Rabindranath. Yet this beautifully produced volume a collector's item can rightfully claim to be the first of its kind.
With the advent of the British traders, the Muslim Mogul rulers of India who were the 'patron of power… descended to a position of petitioners in the durbar of the firangi.'
A brilliant novel of lust, ambition and betrayal, Dr Slaughter is a work that vividly represents a young woman's struggles to settle down in a new place.
One associates certain attributes with a nuclear engineer --- precision, knowledge of applied physics and mathematics. One rarely considers the possibility of such a scientist being a litterateur. Abdul Matin has shown in his publication that he can be both.