News of: Tuesday, 24th of November, 2009
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Indian authorities have arrested two top Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) men who sneaked into Bangladesh to lead a 15-member commando squad in an attempt to attack the US and Indian missions in Dhaka, sources in the law-enforcement agencies say.
The trial of BDR members in connection with the mutiny on February 25-26 in Dhaka and elsewhere in the country begins today through a special court at the Rangamati BDR sector headquarters.
In an unprecedented move, a parliamentary standing committee yesterday prepared a legislative proposal (draft law) to compel any person summoned by a House body to appear before it, and produce documents it asks for.
An automated signalling system cannot provide the answer to Dhaka's traffic woes without improving the existing width and coverage of roads, say transport experts.
A Dhaka court yesterday asked the guarantors to produce two of Adflame Pharmaceutical's directors and one of its managers, charged with adulteration of paracetamol syrup 17 years ago, before it on January 12, 2010.
Prothom Alo Editor and Publisher Matiur Rahman, and Chairman and Managing Director of Mediastar Ltd and Transcom Group Latifur Rahman filed a civil defamation suit on Sunday with the 4th Joint District Judge's Court of Dhaka against Bashundhara Group, seeking Tk 200 crore in damages, according to a media release.
The attorney general's (AG) office yesterday challenged the authority of Bashundhara Group Chairman Ahmed Akbar Sobhan Shah Alam for filing a writ petition with the High Court as a fugitive convict.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said her government is going to formulate a specific media policy soon regarding media publicity on army and defence.
The cabinet yesterday finally approved the EPZ Workers' Sangha and Industrial Relation (amendment) Act, 2009 to pave the way for forming welfare committee of export processing zones (EPZ) workers.
Leader of the Opposition in the Jatiya Sangsad Khaleda Zia has sent an Eid-ul-Azha greetings card to the Leader of the House and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
A section of Indian media yesterday reported that the Justice Liberhan Commission has named former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajapayee along with Leader of Opposition LK Advani and senior BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi as being responsible for spearheading the Karseva movement to demolish the Babri Masjid (mosque) in December 1992.
BNP lawmaker Salauddin Quader Chowdhury yesterday was barred from leaving the country for Singapore.
Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid received death threat from an anonymous person who asked him not to formulate the National Education Policy.
The national council of the main opposition BNP billed for December 8 will not defer, though the party is facing huge difficulties in holding councils for its grassroots levels.
Former deputy minister Abdus Salam Pintu was placed on a two-day fresh remand, for the third time, in a case filed for the bomb attack on Awami League (AL) office at Chasara in Narayanganj in 2001.
Execution of the five convicts in Bangabandhu murder case, who are now in condemned cells, remains stayed until their review petitions are disposed of by the Supreme Court, the chief counsel for the state in this case said yesterday.
Criminals gunned down a worker of a paperboard factory in the city's Sutrapur area yesterday.
A petition was filed yesterday with a Dhaka court to exempt BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia's younger son Arafat Rahman Koko from personal appearance before the court in a money laundering case.
The DMP's decision to let the traffic signals play their due role in regulating traffic on the main roads of Dhaka is a very welcome decision although one is constrained to ask why so long the police chose to dispense with the use of something that is the normal mode of controlling traffic. However, the abrupt manner of change, particularly withdrawal of traffic police, has created predictable chaos.
Conjoined twins Trishna and Krishna survived a 32-hour surgery performed by Australian doctors at a Melbourne hospital on November 17. It is now a week since the surgery took place and the babies are shaping up well. We hope they will recover fully.
Every religion had its Judas and every country had its Brutus. Perhaps the history of human civilisation would not have been complete without them. These villains in the real life drama provide the needed intrigue, melodrama, violence, blood and tears. These characters mutate in the dark crevasses of society and stalk the perceived antagonist like a fiend. Then they lunge at an opportune moment.
FIFTEEN years back on a rainy after-noon of August 1994, when I stood in silence in front of Bangabandhu's mazar in Tungipara, I wondered whether the nation would ever be able to dispense justice to Bangabandhu and his family in our lifetime for the carnage in which the Father of the Nation, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib, and his entire family were massacred. It was sheer stroke of luck that his two daughters were spared as they were not in the country then.
THE ebb from outrage to rage, its decline to umbrage, and then a drift to amnesia is the narrative of the 12 months since the terrorist assault on Mumbai, which shook India and startled the world. America's immediate response to 9/11 was over the top; our phased reaction has been under-the-table. But a message went out from Washington: you provoke the US at your peril, no matter what the collateral damage. We play piped music before one trapped cobra and call it an opera. Then we fall asleep at our own show.
The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) has decided to put an end to fielding coach Mohammad Salahuddin's long association with the national team as his contract will not be renewed after it expires on November 30.
Khelaghar Samaj Kalyan Samity sprung a massive surprise in the Premier Division Cricket League when they trounced erratic Gazi Tank by five wickets at the BKSP Ground yesterday. Having registered their first points in only the previous round, Khelaghar took care of Gazi Tank in fine fashion as they chased down 248 runs in 49.1 overs with five wickets in hand to foil a wonderful knock of 128 not out from Gazi Tank batsman Shahriar Nafees. This loss puts Gazi Tank in a precarious position with possibility of losing out on super six berth.
Sri Lanka suffered a setback ahead of the second Test against India starting today with injured paceman Dammika Prasad being ruled out of the match.
Jamaican superstar Usain Bolt and Jamaican-born United States 400 metres runner Sanya Richards were named athletes of the year here on Sunday.
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) disclosed the ticket rates for the coming tri-nation ODI series and Bangladesh-India Test series.
Dr. Omar Faruque, a popular figure of the country's sports arena, died of cardiac arrest last night at city's Apollo Hospital. He was 55.
Bangladesh Under 19 team will leave for Sri Lanka today to appear in a tri-nation tournament also involving the Under 19 sides of Pakistan and the hosts Sri Lanka.
South Korean club Ulsan Hyundai Mipo Dockyard Club arrived in Dhaka yesterday to play a friendly match against the Bangladesh national team at the Bangabandhu National Stadium on November 26.
Jermain Defoe scored five goals as Tottenham Hotspur thrashed Wigan Athletic 9-1 in one of the most lopsided Premier League results at White Hart Lane here on Sunday which was a record victory for the hosts in the top-flight.
Thierry Henry considered ending his international career following the furore that surrounded his handball against Ireland in the World Cup playoff in Paris last Wednesday.
AC Milan edged Cagliari in a 4-3 thriller and Juventus laboured to a 1-0 home win over Udinese on Sunday as both Italian giants kept leaders Inter Milan within their sights.
It would normally be unthinkable - but it is just possible that holders Barcelona will become the first winners since the 1993 introduction of the Champions League format not to survive the group stages.
Germany striker Steffan Kiessling sent Bayer Leverkusen back to the top of the Bundesliga on Sunday with a first-half equaliser which sealed a 1-1 draw at Bayern Munich.
AC Milan coach Leonardo on Sunday denied that combative midfielder Gennaro Gattuso is looking for a move away from the San Siro in the January transfer window.
Real Salt Lake stunned the star-studded Los Angeles Galaxy to win the Major League Soccer championship 5-4 on penalties here Sunday after the teams finished extra time at 1-1.
Palermo on Monday sacked coach Walter Zenga, just a day after their 1-1 home draw against Sicilian rivals Catania, Zenga's former club.
New Zealand and Pakistan were casting an anxious eye at their fragile batting lineups Monday ahead of the first cricket Test here.
World number one Roger Federer is looking forward to the chance for revenge over home favourite Andy Murray in the ATP World Tour Finals in London on Tuesday.
Valencia reclaimed fourth place with a convincing 3-1 away victory at nine-man Osasuna on Sunday and are now just four points behind league leaders Real Madrid.
Paul Collingwood, making a record 171st one-day appearance for England, hit a century, took two wickets and held a superb catch as England gained a comfortable seven-wicket win over South Africa in the second one-international at SuperSport Park on Sunday.
Ryan Lochte beat out superstar Michael Phelps and veteran Aaron Peirsol for male swimmer of the year Sunday at USA Swimming's Golden Goggles awards.
Eskaton Sabuj Sangha notched a four-wicket win over Rupali Bank in the First Division Cricket League at Jahangirnagar University ground yesterday.
Banks appear least interested in extending credit to tanneries to procure rawhide during this year's Eid-ul-Azha that supplies more than half of the industry's annual requirements.
The government considers reducing the interest rate of savings certificates in line with the bank deposit rate to get relief from the interest payment burden, finance ministry officials said.
Bangladesh will push advanced countries to include its "commercially meaningful" products in the 97 percent duty-free category in the World Trade Organisation (WTO) ministerial meeting to be held in Geneva at the end of this month.
Dhaka stocks rallied for a third day, as bank shares advanced heavily in back-to-back sessions yesterday.
BanglaLion Communications, a WiMax technology company, got Tk 171 crore syndicated loan yesterday.
Improper harvests, processing and storage lead to a loss of nearly an estimated 15 percent of grains produced, analysts said yesterday.
The government should support activities under corporate social responsibility (CSR) to build a positive image of Bangladesh in the global market and help alleviate poverty in the country, speakers said at a seminar yesterday.
Nokia has started selling its latest full QWERTY smartphone, Nokia E72, in Bangladesh, the company said in a recent statement.
The dividend payout of Delta Brac Housing Finance Corporation Ltd (DBH) has increased by 38 percent compared to last year, said a statement.
Several misconceptions mar economic research in Bangladesh. These arise due primarily to a reliance on the simplicity and the superficial plausibility of the proffered explanations, which do not tax the intellectual capacity of the audience and are favourable to influential groups. Consequently, they gain wide acceptance over explanations that are more complex or unpleasant.
Smoke from hookah pipes and the aroma of lamb skewers on the grill mix in the chilly autumn air as men talk loudly in Arabic over pulsating music beneath the neon glow of restaurant signs.
Oil prices moved above 78 dollars a barrel in Asian trade Monday as a weaker US unit helped boost demand, analysts said.
The head of the IMF Dominique Strauss-Kahn said here on Monday that although the worst of the global financial storm had passed, the world economy remains "highly vulnerable."
Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has voiced confidence that the US economy will make a strong recovery and poured cold water on talk of dropping the dollar as the key global currency.
Taiwan plans to restrict Chinese stock investment in strategic sectors, as it seeks to keep control of its economy amid rapidly growing ties with the mainland, local media said Monday.
Thailand's economy shrank by 2.8 percent year-on-year in the third quarter, signalling improvement on the previous quarter as export and tourism revenues pick up, official figures showed Monday.
Most of the buildings in Dhaka city, either built by the developers or by common people, do not have the strength to tolerate an earthquake with a magnitude of seven in the Richter scale, Food and Disaster Management Secretary Mohammad Mokhlesur Rahman said yesterday.
Sushashoner Janney Nagorik (Shujan), a platform for civil society members, yesterday called on the government to ensure people's right to know about the candidates in the upcoming local government elections by reviving the provision of submission of candidates' past records through affidavit.
The government should take a comprehensive plan to tackle the climate change, as different parts of the country fall under different agro-ecological zones and are going to be affected by its impacts in different ways.
Right activists yesterday called for participation of male partners to stop domestic violence against women, because the spate of violence has increased in recent days.
Jute mill workers demanding arrears and other allowances put a barricade on Dhaka-Chittagong highway at Sitakunda upazila here yesterday morning.
The result of the admission test for first year honours courses of 'Ga' unit (Business Studies Faculty) at Dhaka University was published yesterday.
The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday upheld a High Court (HC) order that earlier asked the authorities to interrogate former BNP state minister for home Lutfozzaman Babar at Dhaka Central Jail gate in connection with the August 21 grenade attack case.
The government yesterday issued guidelines to be followed while preparing creative question papers at secondary level.
A Dhaka court yesterday placed Islamic Democratic Party (IDP) convener Maulana Sheikh Abdus Salam on a three-day remand in a case filed for kidnapping a physician at Mirpur in the city in September, 2003.
The Supreme Court yesterday upheld the High Court verdict that quashed all proceedings of a case filed against former BNP lawmaker Mirza Abbas, on charges of illegally possessing huge local and foreign currencies.
Speakers at a roundtable yesterday urged the government to formulate a specific policy to address food adulteration and protect the rights of the consumers.
Architects Tanzim Hasan Salim and Naheed Farzana won the first prize in a competition for architectural design for the Liberation War Museum to be constructed at Agargaon in the city.
A three-member enquiry committee was formed to examine the responsibilities of distorting history in three textbooks of SSC and HSC programmes of Open School of Bangladesh Open University (BOU).
This year's Anannya Literary Award went to noted littérateur Saleha Chowdhury.
Speakers at a roundtable yesterday called on the government to announce a clear roadmap to implement the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) Peace Accord quickly.
Shahadab Akbar, son of deputy leader of parliament Syeda Sajeda Chowdhury, has claimed that he was never a fugitive, but he was intentionally shown absconding in two cases against him.
At least 10 nurses fell sick yesterday on the second consecutive day of the hunger strike of Bangladesh Diploma Unemployed Nurses' Association.
A photo exhibition showcasing creatures of some underprivileged adolescents from rural areas was launched on Sunday in order to let them express their own views through photographs.
Dhaka University Journalists' Association (DUJA) yesterday submitted a memorandum to Vice Chancellor Prof AAMS Arefin Siddique, demanding punishment to those who assaulted a member of the association.
The High Court yesterday directed the government to take steps to keep the area in front of the Shahparan (R) Mazar in Sylhet and its adjacent highway free from traffic jam so that the devotees can offer their prayers smoothly during the period of Eid-ul-Azha.
Notorious miscreant Amir Hossain Mengha, chief of Mengha Bahini, was shot in a gunfight with Rab at Kadamtoli area in Siddhirganj early yesterday.
BNP Secretary General Khondaker Delwar Hossain, Joint Secretary General (in charge of Sylhet division) Nazrul Islam Khan and five others have been sued on charge of forming Jamalganj upazila unit committee under Sunamganj district illegally.
Burglars looted around Tk 1 crore from a bank branch at Daudkandi in Comilla district while cheats attempted to take away Tk 60,000 from another bank in Jhalakathi district on Sunday.
Habiganj district and sessions judge Md Mahbub Ul Haque, also the special tribunal judge, yesterday ordered publication of notification in newspapers showing fugitive JMB chief Moulana Saidur Rahman and two others as accused in the August 17 serial blasts cases.
The date and venue for BNP Chittagong north district unit council have been shifted following opposition from a faction of Hathazari unit. Now the council will be held in Sitakunda on December 3, party sources said
Police yesterday arrested a union parishad (UP) chairman in Nilphamari on charge of misappropriating rice under government's special vulnerable group feeding (VGF) programme meant for poor and distressed people before Eid-ul- Azha.
Aminul Islam Mukul, one of the founders of extremist outfit Gano Mukti Fouz (GMF), was arrested in India on Saturday night.
A three-year-old girl was burnt to death in a fire in Madaripur district while 24 shops and four godowns were gutted in Brahmanbaria and Chittagong yesterday.
Seven people were injured as armed robbers opened fire on the villagers at Imam Nagar village under Boalkhali upazila of the district early yesterday.
There is no possibility of putting the newly installed second 90MW combined cycle power plant at Fenchuganj in Sylhet into commercial operation by December although the Chinese contractor company was supposed to start it in November.
Two factions of Magura BNP--one led district Convener Kabir Murad and another by joint Convener advocate Mokaddes Hossain--yesterday held councils of two upazila units.
At least six leaders and activists of ruling Awami League (AL) and its students front Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) were injured as they clashed on Sunday over appointment of fertiliser sub-dealers.
Israel said yesterday there was no deal yet on a prisoner swap with Hamas, as efforts appeared to gather pace on an accord that could see a Gaza-held soldier exchanged for hundreds of Palestinians.
Pakistani troops killed nearly 40 suspected militants Sunday in a series of operations in northwestern tribal areas near the Afghan border, officials said.
Philippine troops found 21 bodies in the country's restive south after dozens of gunmen on Monday hijacked a convoy of politicians and supporters filing their nominations for next year's elections, officials said.
Amid controversy over leakage of Liberhan Commission report, Congress today targeted the BJP saying the indictment of those responsible for the incident is very clear.
An independent inquiry into Britain's role in the war in Iraq begins public hearings today that will culminate in the eagerly-awaited testimony from former prime minister Tony Blair.
Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who has started a visit Sunday to Washington, called for US pressure on Pakistan to rein in extremists and doubted Islamabad was fully committed on Afghanistan.
Hostility between US and British military leaders in Iraq ran deep, with one describing his US counterparts as "group of Martians," a newspaper reported Monday, citing leaked government documents.
It took 17 years and 48 extensions for the Liberhan Commission probing the 1992 demolition of the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya to submit its report to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in June this year.
A senior US official on Sunday urged Iran to "engage" with the West over its nuclear program, after an Iranian military chief warned that an attack on its nuclear sites would be crushed.
Thousands of animal species thrive in the ocean depths beyond the reach of sunlight, between 200 to 5,000 meters below the surface, an international team of scientists reported Sunday after nearly 10 years of research.
Passengers screamed in panic and fainted with seasickness as an overloaded ferry rocked violently in heavy seas and sank off the Indonesian island of Karimun, survivors recalled Monday.
Insurgent attacks and bombs have killed another four US soldiers in Afghanistan, the Nato-run International Security Assistance force said yesterday.
Sri Lanka will hold early presidential elections within months, media minister Anura Yapa told reporters yesterday, after government forces defeated the Tamil Tiger rebels six months ago.
Arts & Entertainment
Young Bangladeshi director Golam Rabbani Biplob left Panaji, Goa, the venue of the 38th edition of International Film Festival of India (IFFI) with happy memories of his debut film “Swapnadanay” winning a Silver Peacock at the event two years ago.
Colours and brushes are not used in his works. Samiran Dutt is an amateur sculptor who has been wielding a hammer and chisel over the years. Objects like roots, branches, trunks, dry shrubbery, shells and other natural fibres are used in his works. With his creative touch these objects come to life, demonstrating passion, joy, woes, conscience and courage. Samiran's third solo exhibition is now on at Shilpangan Art Gallery, Dhanmondi.
A two-day long audition of indigenous artistes of northern districts for the upcoming 'Indigenous Festival 2009' ended in Dinajpur and Gaibandha last Sunday.
Michael Jackson made history by posthumously winning four American Music Awards on Sunday night, but he couldn't beat Taylor Swift as the year's favourite artist and the evening's top winner.
With an aim to promote and uphold classical music, 'Wahid Cultural Foundation' made its debut at Chhayanaut Sangskriti Bhaban Auditorium on November 20, says a press release.
The 111th birth anniversary of Abul Hassem, a renowned poet of the early 20th century, was observed at Faridpur upazila in Pabna district last Friday. Hassem was born in the village Khalishadaha in Faridpur upazila.
Leading divas of the country Runa Laila and Sabina Yasmin were both recently honoured with the Sheltech Award (for the year 2008). Each awardee received a crest and a cheque worth Tk 1,00,000, according to a press release. Dr. Towfique M. Seraj, managing director of Sheltech, handed the awards to the artistes on November 21. Previous recipients of the award include the late poet Shamsur Rahman, Rabindra Sangeet exponent Kalim Sharafi, litterateur Dr. Mohammad Zafar Iqbal, veteran cultural personality Mustafa Monwar and educationist Abdullah Abu Sayeed.
THE King/Queen is dead, long live the King/Queen" is what used to be announced by the Buckingham Palace spokesperson when the reigning sovereign died. The reason was that the country could not be run without a sovereign. Likewise, a country cannot sustain itself without politics. Even if politics at times is suspended because of declaration of state of emergency or coup d'etat, a different brand of politics replaces the ongoing one. Politics requires prudence and judgment, which are what we need in life. So, one may say that politics is life and, therefore, one cannot help but be involved in some form of politics. And that is why politics never dies.
AS the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) at Copenhagen draws closer, it is worthwhile to review once again what is at stake for us and to clearly articulate the position that Bangladesh needs to take in the various phases of negotiations. The prime minister will attend the Convention, which may well define the fate of our country in the near future, and is expected to present the case of Bangladesh and similar countries that will be affected in various ways by climate change.
WITH A CLICK and a pop, my laptop stopped. (Try saying that six times very fast.)
Science & Life
IF you are (shouldn't you?) afraid of contracting a disease that has no remedy (about almost 100 per cent case-fatality rate), then be cautious when taking the raw date-palm juice. You need to be more cautious, if the source of the juice is unknown. However, if the juice is collected using a simple local technology, then you can safely drink the juice.
Scientists moved Nov 22 to prepare the world's largest atom smasher for exploring the depths of matter after successfully restarting the $10 billion machine following more than a year of repairs.
Abdullah-Al-Muti Sharfuddin (1930-1998) was a renowned educationist and popular science writer. He was born in January, 1930 in the village Phulbari in Sirajganj district. He stood first class first in MSc (Physics) examination from the University of Dhaka in 1953. He also stood first class first in B.Ed examination from the University of Dhaka in 1957 and then completed M.A. in Education from the University of Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A. in 1960. He obtained Ph.D. (Education) from the same University in 1962.
Platoons of clay soldiers were buried with China's first emperor, Qin Shi Huang Di, to accompany him during his eternal rest. These life-size figures, shown here during excavation at the emperor's burial complex near the city of Xi'an in China's Shaanxi Province, are more than 2,200 years old.
A 20-foot-long crocodile with three sets of fangs like wild boar tusks roamed parts of northern Africa millions of years ago, researchers reported recently.. While this fearsome creature hunted meat, not far away another newly found type of croc with a wide, flat snout like a pancake was fishing for food.
Wildlife experts in Indian-controlled Kashmir have fitted black bears with satellite-tracking collars to study their behaviour and help conserve the endangered animals, officials said recently.
This NASA handout image shows nearly the entire sky, as seen in infrared wavelengths and projected at one-half degree resolution, assembled from six months of data from the Infrared Astronomical Satellite, or IRAS. The bright horizontal band is the plane of our Milky Way galaxy, with the center of the galaxy located at the centre of the picture.
Oncology is the study of