The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Friday, April 18, 2014


News of: Friday, 13th of November, 2009

Front Page

Koko charged with money laundering

The Anti-Corruption Commission yesterday pressed money-laundering charges against BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia's younger son Arafat Rahman Koko, around eight months after filing of the case.

SC hearing ends, verdict Nov 19

After 34 years of the brutal killings of Father of the Nation Bangabnadhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and most of his family members, the Appellate Division of Supreme Court (SC) will finally deliver its verdict in the murder case on November 19.

Ctg grenades used in all attacks

The grenades that went missing from the Chittagong 10-truck arms cache in 2004 were used in all grenade attacks including the one on August 21 Awami League rally, detained former BNP state minister for home Lutfozzaman Babar has told interrogators.

Govt to follow WB guideline

Finance Minister AMA Muhith yesterday said the projects funded by World Bank would be implemented as per its guideline but no change would be made in the recent amendments to the Public Procurement Act.

Know true history of independence

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday urged the new generation members of the Armed Forces to know the true history of country's independence and democracy on their own effort so confusion does not cloud anyone's vision in the march forward.

Jasim ignores SC verdict

Major (retd) Jasim Uddin, whose candidacy in the ninth parliamentary election was declared illegal by the Supreme Court, joined six sittings of the last session of the House ignoring a constitutional provision, legal experts said.

Fresh drive starts to free Shitalakhya

Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) and Narayanganj district administration jointly knocked down a number of makeshift structures on both sides of the river Shitalakhya near Kanchpur Bridge yesterday.

Poor response to PDB bidding

The Power Development Board (PDB) tender for 10 power plants of 820 megawatt capacity yesterday received only 28 bids.

Case to be settled in court

The tax evasion case against the Bashundhara Industrial Complex Ltd will not be settled out of court, National Board of Revenue Chairman Nasiruddin Ahmed said yesterday.

Rejoinders, our reply

Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami and sacked Brig Gen Abdullahil Amaan Azmi in separate rejoinders have protested a part of The Daily Star's November 10 report headlined "Attack on Taposh, 5 army men detained".

Rice, paddy procurement prices fixed

The government yesterday set the procurement prices for rice and paddy at Tk 22 and Tk 14 a kilogram, respectively, aiming to collect 3 lakh metric tonnes of rice in the next Aman season.

ACC chief against bail in graft cases

Anti-Corruption Commission Chairman Golam Rahman yesterday said in case of long-term conviction, graft cases should be non-bailable and if necessary laws should be amended, reports Channel-i.

Ensure fair trial, justice for victims

The government of Bangladesh must ensure justice for the victims of the February 2009 Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) mutiny by ensuring that all suspects receive a fair trial, said Amnesty International in a report published yesterday.

293 more cases to be dropped

The government yesterday identified 293 more court cases as 'politically motivated' and recommended dropping them.

Separate pay scale for teachers soon

Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid yesterday said the ministry would frame a separate pay scale for the teachers of government and monthly payment order (MPO)-enrolled schools to attract brilliant youths to teaching with the assurance of a decent career.

Cambodia, Thailand expel diplomats

Cambodia expelled a Thai diplomat and Thailand reciprocated yesterday in a row over Phnom Penh's naming of fugitive former premier Thaksin Shinawatra as an adviser, a Thai government spokesman said.

Editorial

Pay raise of govt servants a welcome move

The just announced new pay scale aims to address a long-standing feeling of deprivation among the government employees. And it cannot also be denied that the old pay scale did not match the reality of the present market that dictates the cost of living. The present effort of the government will hopefully go to address the mismatch between the old pay scale of the employees and the rising cost of living.

The faltering demolition drive

Over the last couple of years there has been much talk and quite some action regarding structures falling foul of building regulations. During the period of the caretaker administration, some purposeful exercises were undertaken to demolish unauthorized structures. But at a point those drives appeared to come to a stop for reasons that have never been explained. And since the present government took over early this year, the demolition programme has been going on at various places in the capital. Every so often, there have been news reports of the authorities, in this case Rajuk, getting busy retrieving spots that have fallen into the hands of unscrupulous elements. In the past few weeks, if not months, one has come across reports and images of bulldozers busy pulling down parts of structures not authorized under the existing regulations.

Small nations in the big world

THE number of small nations is bigger than the number of big nations in the world. G. Pascal Zachary writes in The Global Me, published in 2000, that the world had 74 small nations in 1946. At the time of writing his book, he counted 190 small nations, of which 87 had populations below 5 million, 58 less than 2.5 million and 35 lower than 500,000. But does size matter in international relations? As Bob Dylan sang, "the answer my friend is blowing in the wind."

Rampant extortion by transport associations

FOR decades, the road transport sector in Bangladesh has been plagued by rampant extortion and bribery. Due to the domino effect, the cost of extortion is passed on from vehicle owners to transport users to wholesalers to retailers and finally to the hapless consumers who are the ultimate victims. This issue has been recently highlighted by the food and disaster management minister, who went on record in the electronic media citing precise figures to emphasise how extortion results in manifold increases in transport costs.

Sports

Busy 2010 for Tigers

The Bangladesh cricket team will have a busy schedule next year as revealed by the home schedules released by the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) on Thursday. The season will start with the tri-nation tournament involving India and Sri Lanka in January.

A tale of two captains

After a successful year the Bangladesh cricket team looks like a settled one. With India and Sri Lanka visiting in January for a tri-series, followed by a Test series against India, the BCB have one crucial question to answer. Who will be captain of the national team, Mashrafe Mortaza or Shakib Al Hasan?

I lost command: Younus

Younus Khan has given up the captaincy of Pakistan once again, and taken a temporary break from the game altogether, after failing to overcome a long-running rift with a group of players. Effectively, after Younus informed the Pakistan board chairman Ijaz Butt of his decision, it signalled a victory for player power over an unpopular captain.

Federer stunned

World number one Roger Federer sank to a surprise 3-6, 7-6 (7/4), 6-4 second-round defeat against unseeded Frenchman Julien Benneteau in the ATP Paris Masters on Wednesday.

Another Phelps miss

US superstar Michael Phelps, shunning the high-tech swimsuit, said he knew landing shortcourse World Cup titles in Stockholm would likely prove beyond him as a result -- but still came within an ace of pocketing the 200 metres individual medley on Wednesday.

No play on Day Two

Wet ground conditions caused by overnight rain prevented play on the second day of the three-day match between touring Sri Lanka and the Indian board president's XI here on Thursday.

Aussies clear further on top

Australia have widened the gap between themselves and the rest of the teams in the ICC ODI rankings, extending their rating to 130, eight ahead of South Africa and India. Australia were the top-placed team at the start of the ODI series against India, who were No. 2. But following the 4-2 win, Australia have surged further ahead while India have dropped two places.

Local Snippets

Chittagong Area team emerged champions in the Bangladesh Army boxing competition which was concluded at the Shaheed Salahuddin Cantonment, Ghatail yesterday.

Enke apologised in suicide note

Germany goalkeeper Robert Enke left a suicide note apologising for the desperate suicide plan he had made in the hours before taking his own life, it was revealed Thursday.

Tardelli plots an upset

Republic of Ireland assistant manager Marco Tardelli has warned France that his side are confident of stopping the former World Cup winners reaching next year's finals.

Fergie gets 4-game ban

Sir Alex Ferguson was given a four-match touchline ban for improper conduct by the Football Association (FA) here on Thursday following an outspoken attack on referee Alan Wiley.

Rooney relishes Brazil tie

Wayne Rooney believes a glamour friendly with Brazil here on Saturday will provide a measure of how much work England have to do if they are to lift the World Cup next year.

Do or die for New Zealand, Bahrain

For once in rugby-mad New Zealand the round ball is hogging the headlines ahead of Saturday's crunch tie here against Bahrain for a place in next year's football World Cup.

Players back Pellegrini

The players of Real Madrid, ridiculed by the press after their elimination from the Spanish Cup by a third division club, accepted the blame for the defeat and defended under-fire coach Manuel Pellegrini.

England lose Lampard

Frank Lampard picked up a training injury here Thursday forcing him out of England's friendly against Brazil on Saturday.

Gattuso's car found in Tirana

A luxury vehicle stolen from AC Milan midfielder Gennaro Gattuso in 2006 has been found in Tirana, Albania police said Thursday.

Bosingwa out for 3 months

Chelsea's Portuguese defender Jose Bosingwa will be out for about three months after he underwent surgery on his left knee this week, a statement issued by the Premier League leaders on Wednesday said.

First T20 today

England face several selection problems ahead of the first Twenty20 international against South Africa at the Wanderers Stadium on Friday.

Venus-Maria showdown

Venus Williams and Maria Sharapova will warm-up for the Australian Open with an exhibition match in Thailand to mark the 100th anniversary of the Hua Hin seaside resort, organisers said Thursday.

Ponting not quitting

Ricky Ponting has no plans to walk away from the international game, easing the short-term fears of the selection chairman Andrew Hilditch. Hilditch has predicted Ponting's retirement will leave a gap as big as the one Shane Warne created when he stood down, but the captain remains enthusiastic after his one-day side's fine 4-2 victory over India.

Lee's spot in jeopardy

The push of Brett Lee and Stuart Clark to regain their Test spots at the Gabba could be in vain after Andrew Hilditch, the chairman of selectors, indicated Australia's three younger bowlers would remain the panel's preferred option. Australia's decision makers are already looking ahead to next year's Ashes series and will use the Tests against West Indies and Pakistan to groom the side for the attempt at regaining the urn.

Div 1 cricket

Uttara Sporting Club coasted to a six-wicket victory over Dhaka Wanderers Club in the low-scoring match of the first division cricket league at the Dhanmondi Cricket Stadium yesterday.

Rameez, Inzy hail Younus

Former players Wednesday hailed Younus Khan's decision of opting to sit out the three-Test series in New Zealand and handing the captaincy to Mohammad Yousuf.

Daily Star shot down

Defending champions Daily Star failed to make it last four this time in the Pepsi-DRU Cricket Tournament as they suffered a 27-run defeat to Channel i in the quarterfinal match at the Maulana Bhashani National Hockey stadium yesterday.

Business

Banks cold-shoulder fixed deposits

Fixed deposits are discouraged by private commercial banks (PCBs), as evident in the low interest rate they now offer.

Tax payment goes online in January

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) will complete the tasks for introducing an online tax payment system within next month to streamline the existing tax return submission procedure, said the chairman of the board yesterday.

German company partners with Yunus over textile

Germany's Otto Group has signed a deal with Grameen Trust to start a joint venture in textiles in Bangladesh, Yunus Centre said in a statement yesterday.

Aviation stalwart suggests Biman's capacity building

Biman Bangladesh Airlines will surely emerge as a leading airline in Asia and the Pacific region, provided it is equipped with the required number of aircraft, its safety issues resolved and capacity raised, said Captain Carlos Limon, the president of International Federation of Airline Pilots Associations (IFALPA).

Garment stimulus next week: Muhith

Finance Minister AMA Muhith said yesterday the government would announce a stimulus package for the garment sector anytime next week amid falling exports of apparel items.

Power distributors too many

The excessive number of power distribution companies under the Rural Electrification Board (REB) of the government is not business friendly for a small country like Bangladesh, Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury, power and energy adviser to the prime minister, said yesterday.

BanglaLion launches WiMax roadshow

BanglaLion Commu-nication, a WiMax licensee, yesterday launched a roadshow to make people aware of the high-speed internet.

Indian electrical expo invites Bangladeshi companies

Bangladeshi companies involved in electrical and electronics fields have been invited to take part in the ELECRAMA-2010, an exhibition set for January 20-24 in Mumbai in India.

Marketing competition starts November 19

BrandWitz 2009, an inter-university marketing and branding competition, starts on November 19, says a press release.

KFC outlet in Chittagong

KFC (Kentucky Fried Chicken), a concern of Transcom Foods Limited, started journey in the port city through launching its first outlet here yesterday.

Finding ways to sustain growth

Nations must temper stimulus spending, ensure stable growth and strengthen financial systems to ensure a prosperous global economy in the post-crisis period, Asia-Pacific ministers said Thursday.

$10b forex reserve: A standing ovation

Our foreign exchange reserve crossed the US$10 billion mark for the first time on Wednesday .Due to the inherent nature of our negative trade balance, the FX reserve has traditionally been ailing until 2002; it fell to an alarming level of nearly $1 billion in October 2001.

Oil prices up

Oil prices rose Thursday in Asian trade, boosted by positive showings on regional equities markets and a strengthening Chinese economy, analysts said.

Indian industrial output surges, beats forecasts

India's industrial output jumped by a better-than-expected 9.1 percent in September from a year earlier, data showed Thursday, fuelling hopes Asia's third-largest economy was firmly on the mend.

Chinese premier says loose monetary policy to continue

China will stick to a loose monetary policy, Premier Wen Jiabao reiterated Thursday, despite mounting evidence the world's third largest economy has rebounded strongly from the global crisis.

S Korea freezes key interest rate for 9th month

South Korea's central bank Thursday froze its key interest rate at a record low 2 percent for a ninth month, saying uncertainties such as the spread of swine flu could still affect growth.

Australia unemployment rises to 5.8pc

Australian unemployment rose last month as growing confidence saw job-seekers return to the market, data showed Thursday, but the government warned of a further rise as stimulus money wore off.

CORPORATE BRIEFS

DELTA SPINNING
As per unaudited quarterly accounts for the first quarter to September 30, 2009 (July to September), the company has reported net profit of Tk 7.74 million with EPS of Tk 5.06 as against Tk 5.96 million and Tk 3.90 respectively for the same period of the previous year.

Currency

Local Market FX
Local inter-bank FX market was active yesterday. There was adequate supply of dollar in the market. The USD/BDT rate traded at a similar level compared with the previous day.

Metropolitan

Security beefed up across country

Police high-ups yesterday asked the rank and file to remain alert for their own security yesterday as tight security has been beefed up across the country centring the trial of Bangabandhu killing case.

Kotalipara BCL men snatch tender box

Some leaders of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) in Kotalipara upazila of Gopalganj district snatched tender box of Local Government Engineering Department (LGED) and ransacked its office yesterday.

Legal notice on DCC mayor for failure to comply with HC order

Bangladesh Paribesh Andolon (Bapa) and Institute of Architects Bangladesh (IAB) Tuesday served a legal notice upon the city Mayor Sadeque Hossain Khoka for having failed to comply with a High Court order to preserve the Dhanmondi playground.

Over 40pc children suffer from malnutrition

Most of the world's chronically undernourished under-fives -- 8.3 crore children -- are in South Asia, according to a Unicef report titled 'Improving Child and Maternal Nutrition', released yesterday.

Wait till SC verdict: Suranjit Let politicians decide: SQ Chy

Awami League leader Suranjit Sengupta yesterday said there is no alternative but to restore the 1972 constitution to unite the nation, but it would be wise to wait for the Supreme Court verdict in this regard.

50m doses of H1N1 vaccine for developing countries

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) will donate 50 million doses of its adjuvanted pandemic H1N1 influenza vaccine to the World Health Organisation (WHO) for distribution to developing countries.

Scottish writer Dalrymple to deliver lecture at IUB today

William Dalrymple, an eminent Scottish historian and writer, will deliver a lecture on his latest book 'Nine Lives: in Search of the Sacred in Modern India' at the Independent University, Bangladesh (IUB) today.

Bangladesh-US military exercise ends

US-Bangladesh joint military exercises codenamed 'Tiger Shark' concluded here yesterday, training up naval commandos under an agenda of ensuring maritime security in the region.

New NU exam timing

The second year honours examinations-2008 under National University (NU) will begin at 10:00am instead of 1:00pm on November 16, says a press release.

Indian foreign secretary due in city Nov 14

Indian Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao will arrive in Dhaka on November 14 on a two-day official visit at the invitation of his Bangladesh counterpart Mijarul Quayes.

Show zero tolerance to violence against women

Speakers at a two-day regional conference of the South Asian civil society ended in the city yesterday with a declaration of zero tolerance to violence against women in the regional politics.

Call to fulfil demands of affected people

Speakers at a meeting yesterday demanded the government ensure that the aspirations and demands of the affected people are effectively reflected in the amendment to the Vested Property Return Act 2009.

Bomb hoax creates panic in Ctg

A bomb hoax created panic and prompted law enforcers to beef up security with deployment of additional forces in and around Chittagong Press Club (CPC) and Court Building premises here yesterday.

Hospital fee hike to deprive poor

Health rights activists yesterday opposed the government's recent decision to increase 'user fee' in public health facilities, saying that such a move would deprive poor women, children and elderly people of health services.

Int'l support to prevent HIV stressed

Foreign Minister Dr Dipu Moni yesterday stressed the importance of enhanced international cooperation and partnership to prevent and control HIV/AIDS.

Road crashes kill 5, injure 44

At least five people were killed and 44 others injured in separate road accidents in Chittagong, Gaibandha, Natore, Netrakona and Jhenidah yesterday.

Workers' Party congress begins tomorrow

The five-day 8th congress of the Workers' Party of Bangladesh will begin in the city tomorrow.

Pledge to fight militancy, communalism

Leaders of different progressive political parties and social organisations yesterday pledged to work unitedly against militancy and communalism.

Dhaka seeks int'l pilot body's cooperation

Bangladesh yesterday sought necessary cooperation from International Federation of Airline Pilots' Association (IFALPA) in improving safety standard of Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh (CAAB), which faces lack of efficiency.

FM apprises US envoy of women empowerment

US Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women's Issues Melanne Verveer called on Foreign Minister Dipu Moni at her ministry office in the city yesterday.

Salam Pintu shown arrested

Detained former deputy minister and BNP leader Abdus Salam Pintu was shown arrested in connection with the bomb attack on the Awami League office at Chasara in Narayanganj in 2001.

RMG storehouse gutted

A storehouse of garment wastes and ten makeshift houses were gutted in a fire at Maddhya Rasulpur of Kamrangirchar in the city yesterday.

'Help address challenges of climate change'

The government has initiated a number of programmes aiming at achieving long-term solution in disaster management and to address impact of climate change.

BBC launches new programme

BBC World Service Trust has launched a new programme named BBC Janala offering a new way of learning English using mobile phone and the internet.

National

Shibir cadres held with cocktails, other weapons

Police arrested two Shibir cadres, seized cocktails, Chinese axe, iron rods and pipes during raids on three Rajshahi University (RU) halls early yesterday.

Tahirpur BNP confce foiled due to feud, Section 144 in Boda

The conference of Tahirpur upazila BNP under Sunamganj district could not be held on Wednesday night due to intra-party clash while Section 144 was imposed on a market premises where two factions of Boda upazila BNP under Panchagarh convened conference at the same time yesterday.

FF's land, graveyard 'grabbed' in Bogra

Personal land of a freedom fighter and an adjoining graveyard at Shajapur village in Shahajahanpur upazila of Bogra district have allegedly been captured by a local Awami League (AL) leader.

3 outlaws to die, another murdered by rivals

Three outlaws were sentenced to death yesterday in Chuadanga, another hacked to death in Pabna the day before while a former outlaw who deserted from Ansar was held with sharp weapons in Khulna on Tuesday.

Cartoonist Arif jailed

A Jessore court on Thursday sentenced Arifur Rahman, a cartoonist of The Daily Prothom Alo, to two months' rigorous imprisonment for drawing a cartoon about Hazrat Mohammad (SM) on the Alpin, a supplementary magazine (now defunct) of the Bangla daily.

Seven bombs recovered in Chuadanga, Benapole

Law enforcers yesterday recovered seven bombs--four from Chuadanga and three from Benapole.

Chittagong Medical College reopens

Chittagong Medical College (CMC) reopened yesterday after 18 days of unscheduled closure following a clash between the activists of Chhatra League (BCL) and Shibir cadres.

BSF kills two Bangladeshis

Indian border guards have killed two Bangladeshis in Lalmonirhat and Satkhira.

Two BCL leaders arrested, arms recovered

Police on Wednesday night arrested two Chhatra League (BCL) leaders and recovered a loaded revolver from a hostel of Chandpur Government College.

Letters

Ship breaking yards

A large ship-breaking industry that has grown in an unplanned way in Chittagong is now an environmental concern.

Climate change, calamities

Geographically, Bangladesh is located in a comparatively disadvantageous region, exposed to various natural catastrophes like flood, cyclone, drought etc. which are causing havoc to our life and economy. A substantial portion of our GDP is adversely affected due to these calamities. It is a proven fact that these natural calamities are the direct impact of changing climate across the globe. Climate change is mostly attributed to the manipulation of nature in terms of various dimensions such as- emission of carbon monoxide and some other greenhouse gases, rapid and unplanned urbanization and industrialization, deforestation and exploration of land and water etc. It has been reported rightly that the developed nations are the major participants in this unpleasant manipulation of Mother Nature. The ultimate consequences of these activities are those natural calamities that we are facing along with some other nations. So, it is the responsibility of those developed nations to indemnify us not in terms of loans, rather direct support in terms of financial, technical and infrastructure facilities.

Our expatriate workers

Over six million expatriate workers of our country contribute a whopping amount of around nine billion US dollar annually to the national exchequer. This amount constitutes the second highest foreign exchange earnings over any other sectoral export trade. Balance of payment, development expenditure, consumer-spending and the like are greatly stoked by this precious earnings. These workers are our unsung heroes.

Town planning

Finding “Build a separate functional capital” written by Shahnoor Wahid in The Daily Star (10 Nov), I started reading this article with happiness, thinking someone is there to think about the city planning. But after reading a while I became very sad as he wrote, “the great politicians, the great engineers, the great town planners, the mayor, who came and went like sea tides couldn't see it coming. They were so busy making money that they had no time or urge to look ahead and plan ahead.” Sir, reading that I would love to ask when and who ask town planners to take care of the city? Who gives permission to a town planner to talk? Where is the place of town planner in the government hierarchy? Urban Planners are not the government officials. We are nowhere, Sir. Nobody knows about us. Nobody knows what we do.

DST

Much is being written on the subject in most dailies as well as your "To The Editor" page. Unfortunately, the ideas put forward in your daily on 25th. October by a writer are somewhat divorced from realities.

Facts and figures

At last we have some real facts and figures on traffic jams in Dhaka from authoritative and reliable sources. The DS of 23 Oct contains a report on the workshop held by JICA/BUET (page 2) “City Traffic Worsening”, and another article on Page 11 entitled “Road Safety and Traffic Congestion by Md Rezaul Karim of Transparency Int. This letter therefore contains the information divulged therein as they make interesting reading and are eye-openers.

Ambitious projects

It is great that our government is planning to construct elevated railways, orbital waterways and circular motorways to make life easier for our people (DS, 29 Oct). These ambitious projects will cost us billions which this government doesn't have at its disposal. However, making the ACC more effective, separating the judiciary, freeing our varsities from corrupt politics, giving our police force the necessary freedom to do their job honestly, etc., will benefit the whole country (not only Dhaka) and they wouldn't cost us a huge amount of cash either.

More CNG scooters needed

I wholeheartedly support this letter (31.10.09). As an expatriate spending a considerable time every year in Dhaka I find looking for taxis whose drivers want to go where I want is a time consuming affair and often impossible. Baby taxi is a solution if it is readily available, the driver runs on meter without a grumpy face, and even happily plies short distances now covered by rickshaws. The minimum fare for baby taxis should be fixed in this light to encourage then move even short distances so that rickshaws can be slowly phased out, and car imports restricted. Refusal to ply short distances should be reported for heavy fines on baby-taxi owners. At one time Dhaka was only a city of rickshaws, some buses and horse drawn carriages.

Our MPs

Our members of parliament demand the following material benefits from the government who run the country in the name of the people for the welfare of the people. MPs demand the following perks from their voters who have very 'kindly' voted them to power, otherwise the MPs would not have been seen or heard.

Parking ticket

I would like to bring to your attention the issue of parking tickets. Recently on a weekend, Friday at 7:00pm I went to Gulshan 2 and parked behind a building in front of Lavender Shopping Mall. I have been going there for a long time and have never been charged for parking. However, this Friday two people came up to me with a pink slip and tried to charge me Tk 10/- for parking there. I had a look at the slip and it had no registration number of DCC on it, nor was there any ID cards on those people. They told me the name of their company. According to the ticket collector they had been given this job outsourced from DCC several months ago. I queried about their registration number but they had no answer and told me to contact their boss.

Driving school

The present elected government came to power in January'09. It has the responsibility to do its job for the betterment of people. Training on technical trade is one of the ways to help the poor youth that would lead to employment opportunity and generate income for them. The number of poor people would be reduced as a result of technical education. A driver earns more than a general labourer. It is necessary to impart training in a technical trade like driving. Setting up and operating a driving school is not a costly business.

Do not forget

I would like to remind all that we have been gifted with two most precious things by none other than Bangabandhu and his worthy daughter Sheikh Hasina.

Online Voices

Readers' instant comments on The Daily Star Online reports. Log on to thedailystar.net to leave your comments.

International

Iran mission official shot dead in Pakistan

Gunmen shot dead a Pakistani spokesman for the Iranian consulate at point blank range as he set off for work in the northwestern city of Peshawar yesterday, police said.

Lanka's top general quits military

Sri Lanka's top general, Sarath Fonseka, the architect of the army's victory over Tamil rebels who was switched to a more ceremonial position, quit Thursday, a military source said.

'Zardari got $4.3million in kickbacks'

Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari allegedly received millions of dollars in kickbacks for the purchase of three French submarines for the Pakistani Navy in 1994, a French daily has reported.

Lanka welcomes Myanmar junta chief

Myanmar's junta leader General Than Shwe arrived in Sri Lanka on a state visit Thursday to be greeted by a 21-gun salute and guard of honour.

Obama tops Forbeslist of world's most powerful people

The leader of a Mexican drug cartel made Forbes' magazines list of the world's most powerful people, well ahead of France's President Nicolas Sarkozy and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev.

Obama wants revised Afghan war options

President Barack Obama won't accept any of the Afghanistan war options before him without changes, a senior administration official said, as concerns soar over the ability of the Afghan government to secure its own country one day.

Hillary calls for release of Suu Kyi

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called on Myanmar Thursday to free opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi, stepping up the pressure ahead of President Barack Obama's meeting with the junta's premier.

BJP looks for top leaders

Buffeted by internal strife and a series of electoral debacles, India's main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has stepped up its efforts to find a new leadership after the tenure of present party chief Rajnath Singh ends next month and amidst reports that LK Advani is set to quit at the end of winter session of parliament in December.

Berlin Wall's fall inspires campaign for justice

A Berlin Wall anniversary plea by world leaders for a new fight against 'tyranny' was hailed on Tuesday as Germany cleared away its dominoes of freedom.

Nepal minister faces charges for slapping top bureaucrat

A Nepalese government minister who repeatedly slapped a senior civil servant in the face for sending an old car to pick her up is to face charges, police said yesterday.

Cops clash with Nepali Maoists

Riot police used tear gas and batons to disperse Maoist activists holding a huge protest rally outside the main government compound in Nepal's capital yesterday.

Facts about Wall

The Berlin Wall went up in the early hours of August 13, 1961, and was constantly modified and reinforced until it fell 28 years later, having cost the lives of at least 136 people who tried to cross it.

Arts & Entertainment

A blend of colours: ‘Silk Painting’ by child artists

Drik Gallery recently played host to the 'Silk Painting' exhibition. Of the participating artistes, aged from seven to eleven years, some were autistic. The exhibition gave all the children a unique platform to unleash their potential. The vibrant colours and flow of energy had the glow of innocence, but the creativity and innovation seemed to belong to a mature and experienced group of artists.

One of the earliest Indian plays resurrected

The ancient Indian classic play "Mrichchhakatika" is being staged at Natmandal, University of Dhaka. Starting on November 10, the play is being staged over six days. The Department of Theatre, DU has produced the play based on the work -- with the same title -- by Sanskrit playwright Sudraka.

‘Maha-utshab’: A traditional festival of Magura

The local Hindu community recently observed its long-standing tradition of 'Maha-utshab' (grand festival) with a two-day programme at Durgapur village in Magura sadar upazila.

Profile of an adept flutist

No music is complete without the rhythmic tone of Samir's flute at Khulna radio station. He profusely renders his tune of flute in music and songs from the core of his heart. The musician is quite popular in Jhenidah. His melodious notes win the hearts of all.

Assault On Nature

To generate awareness among the masses of Bangladesh against the contamination of environment and the adverse effects caused by climate change, a three-day photography exhibition, titled “Biporjosto Paribesh: Bipanno Manobjati”, was held at National Press Club Auditorium from November 9 to 11. Photo Shangbadik Bohumukhi Shamobay Samiti Limited arranged the exhibition. On the last day of the exhibition, participating photographers (working for different national dailies) were awarded for their works. Kajal Hazra of the daily Ittefaq and Ratan Gomez of Inqilab jointly won the first prize while Abu Taher Khokon of New Age and Mohammad Palash of Dainik Sangbad received the second and third prize respectively. Sheikh Enamul Haq and Anisur Rahman of The Daily Star, Sanaul Haq of New Age and Saiful Islam Kallol of Prothom Alo received special awards at the exhibition.

Record 20 animated films vie for Oscar

A record 20 films have been submitted for best animated feature at the Academy Awards.

OP-ED

Subsidy can boost production

ON November 2, the government announced reduction in the prices of major non-urea fertilisers -- triple super phosphate (TSP), muriate of potash (MOP) and diammonium phosphate (DAP). Under the revised rates, the prices of TSP, MOP and DAP have been reduced to Tk.22, Tk.25, and Tk.30 per kilogram from Tk.40, Tk.35 and Tk.40 per kilogram respectively. Subsidising the prices of the aforesaid fertilisers will minimise food production costs, particularly of food grains and vegetables, and thereby encourage the farmers to grow more food.

Sycophancy or efficiency, that's the question

ALONG with corruption, another malady that pervades our body politic and society is sycophancy. Sycophancy is a vile verbal art of showering false admiration on others. It is used as a means to achieve unethical private interests. The word originates from "Sycophantes," the Greek god who used to teach the art of flattery. However, throughout the world, dishonest politicians and inefficient bureaucrats seem to have inherited this art from the royal poets who once used to flatter kings and queens, and then earn income out of this manipulative art.

In memoriam

IT'S a tough call to unwind almost half a century of life to search out the prints that were left by Imtiyaz, for our lives were knotted together over this long stretch. When, in our late teens, we met I do not recall, for life was then a passion on the run lured by hazy dreams; we shared the zest for life, no-holds barred, mostly in the folds of Ramna, the young romantic Dhaka which in many ways mirrored our age.

StarTech

Financial sector looks for ICT solutions among students

The power of youth can never be underestimated. The young generation is always brimming with new ideas, but alas, very little is done to tap into this resourceful treasure chest, especially here in Bangladesh. One such venture had been undertaken by D.Net (Development Research Network) and Citibank N.A. Bangladesh by organizing an IT case competition for students from various public and private universities of different parts of the nation.

ECS features Digital ICT razzmatazz

Technology showcasing is now a well accepted phenomenon in Bangladesh, also prioritised in the ECS Computer City's 'Digital ICT Fair 2009' for the remote areas to make the Digital Bangladesh slogan a reality. Speakers at the inauguration ceremony of the fair on November 7 pressed home at this point indicating the digital devices should make known to the people from all walks through this kind of arrangements. The fair started on November 7 and will continue up to 15 of this month at Multiplan Centre situated at New Elephant road in the capital.

BCS hosts Digital Bangladesh Summit 2009

Bangladesh Computer Samity (BCS) is going to arrange 'Digital Bangladesh Summit 2009' at Bangabandhu International Summit Centre on November 22. BCS expects the President Md Zillur Rahman will inaugurate the summit as a chief guest.

Windows 7 launched

Microsoft Bangladesh believes that their latest operating system (OS) 'Windows 7' will successfully acquire most of the market share like their most successful OS 'Windows XP' in no time.

Symantec joins hand with CSL

Symantec Corp. a global leader in security, storage and systems management solutions has announced the appointment of Computer Source Ltd (CSL), a leading IT distributor in the Bangladesh market, as their authorised distributor for enterprise and retail solutions in Bangladesh, says a press release.

World's slimmest mobile phone

In a handout picture released by Samsung Electronics, a model displays what Samsung claim to be the world's slimmest watch-shaped mobile phone, just 11.98 millimetres (0.48 inchs) thick at a showroom in Seoul.


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