The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Tuesday, July 22, 2014


News of: Sunday, 6th of December, 2009

Front Page

Six BDR courts to run 50 trials

Six special courts of Bangladesh Rifles will hold 50 trials for the February 25-26 mutiny in as many BDR establishments across the country.

Farmers never say over in climate change war

With the saline water from a gradually swelling sea continuously making further inroads into Bangladesh's prime arable lands and late monsoon upsetting the cropping seasons, agronomists reckon her as a virtual climate change laboratory.

Bilateral relations to turn a new chapter

Policymakers, diplomats, educationists and journalists yesterday hoped that the December 19 meeting between Sheikh Hasina and Manmohan Singh in New Delhi would usher in a new chapter in relations between the two countries.

Mall fire kills one, hurts 20

One person was killed and 20 others injured after a blaze hit Shahjalal Complex at Malibagh intersection in the capital yesterday afternoon.

Confusion clouds formation process

BNP leaders and workers are in the dark over the process of formation of party committees including national standing committee and central executive committee, as it is not clearly stated in the party constitution.

Underage drivers behind most of city deaths

Twenty-eight road accidents on average occur in the capital every day and underage drivers of public transport are mostly responsible.

Flashback to Satkhira mutiny

Under Khulna sector, BDR mutiny took place on February 26 in two of the BDR battalions -- 7 Rifle Battalion also known as Nildumur Rifle Battalion and 41 Rifle Battalion also known as Satkhira Rifle Battalion.

Tk 3 crore foreign currencies seized at ZIA: One held

Customs officials seized foreign currencies worth about Tk 3 crore and arrested an outgoing passenger at Zia International Airport in the city yesterday.

Low spending on high targets

Implementation of both the revenue budget and development budget was far short of their targets in the first three months of the current fiscal year (FY).

India edge past Afghanistan

Three-time champions India made a winning start in the Sixth SAFF Championship with a last-gasp goal over Afghanistan in Group A at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.

Russian nightclub blast, fire kill 109

An explosion and fire blamed on fireworks tore through a nightclub in the Russian city of Perm early yesterday, killing 109 people, Russian officials said.

China favours road link plan thru' Kunming

The government is taking initiative to establish road and rail communications between Bangladesh and China through Kunming for trans-border transportation between the two countries.

Ulfa chief remanded

Top leader of United Liberation Front of Asom Arabinda Rajkhowa was taken on 12 days' remand for interrogation yesterday even as his elusive colleague Paresh Baruah said he was ready for dialogues with Indian government if "sovereignty" for Assam was on the agenda.

Body of boy found floating

Body of a ten-year-old boy -- found floating yesterday in the river Daira at Mithamoin in the district -- took the death toll of the Friday boat-capsize to 48.

4 of a family killed in road crash

Six persons, including four of a schoolteacher's family, were killed and 20 others were injured in a road accident yesterday on the Dhaka-Sylhet highway at Karnogop area under Rupganj upazila in the district.

Teesta tops river talks with India

The issue of Teesta water sharing figured prominently on the second day yesterday of the talks of the technical committee of Bangladesh-India Joint Rivers Commission (JRC).

Nat'l ID card bill faces changes

The parliamentary standing committee on the Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs will make recommendations to amend the National ID card Registration Bill-2009.

Editorial

Deaths in river again!

River travel used to be the safest mode of travel in Bangladesh. Not any longer. It seems that the number of disasters on the waterways is keeping pace with road accidents in the country. Over a period of one week two horrible launch disasters have cost the lives of nearly two hundred people.

Carnage in Pakistan

We are appalled at the incident of bombing inside a mosque in Pakistan which killed over two dozen people, including four children. In this latest suicide bombing incident the bomber blew himself up after entering the mosque when devotees were about to go home after holding a religious congregation. It was a heinous act by all definition and deserves condemnation in the strongest of language. Targeting unarmed civilians, especially devotees belonging to another community in their places of worship, only proves that the perpetrators have no respect for human life and religion in general.

Culture of 'truancy' in the House

LAWMAKERS are people's elected representatives and their primary job, as their designation implies, is to frame laws in parliament. Since the people of different parliamentary constituencies elect the members of parliament (MPs) through ballot, it's a small wonder that constituents expect service from them. However, there are different departments of the administration, the local government bodies and the service-providing agencies to look after the various needs of the people. The local MPs, on their part, play their roles by bringing to the government's notice where these official service agencies are failing or proving to be inadequate. A particular MP may raise the issue in the House so that the minister concerned may address it. In this way, the MP also pinpoints the areas under her/his constituency that merit special attention from the government from the perspective of development. The issues may also cover areas where the residents are faced with a problem that warrants urgent addressing. In fact, the constituents are wont to think that their MP will solve all their problems as s/he represents them either in the government or in the opposition.

Fighting climate change and poverty collectively

WE are living in an increasingly unequal and unjust world with the highest amount of wealth and highest number of people living in extreme poverty, who suffer from food insecurity, malnutrition, ill health, joblessness and social insecurity. A recent report of FAO says that currently over one billion people in the Earth cannot take adequate food every day and they go hungry. We are also facing the biggest environmental and developmental problem ever -- global climate change, which poses a serious threat to human security and civilisation. Rapid climate change is a man-made catastrophe.

Sports

Hosts can confirm semifinals today

Fresh from a moral boosting 4-1 win over Bhutan, Bangladesh will be looking to confirming their semifinals berth in the SAFF Championship with a win against Pakistan in a crucial Group B encounter at the Bangabandhu National Stadium today.

Nepal hold Maldives

A spirited Nepal held holders Maldives to a 1-all draw in Group A opener of the Bangabandhu SAFF Championship at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.

Victoria in Super League

Mohammad Sharif's splendid all-round show ousted star-studded Gazi Tank from the race as Victoria Sporting Club booked a super league place in the Ispahani Tea Premier Division Cricket League with an 11-run victory at BKSP yesterday.

Telegraph chess

Bangladesh's Abdullah Al Saif earned 4.5 points after the end of the fifth round and shared second position along with ten other players in the 21st Telegraph School Chess Championship in Kolkata.

Div I chess

The First Division Chess League starts tomorrow from 3:00 pm at the Bangladesh Chess Federation hall-room. Sixteen teams will participate in the tournament. The participating teams are Destiny 2000 Limited, Bangladesh Biman, Pritam-Prism Chess Club, Leonine Chess Club, Titas Club, Air Destiny Limited, Dhaka Metropolitan Chess Club, I2 Soft Solution Ltd. Overseas School of Chess, Farashgonj Sporting Club, Sultana Kamal Smirity Pathagar, Dhaka University Chess Club, Faith Chess Club, Mohakhali Pradip Sangah, Basir Memorial Chess Club and Jobs Vender.

Sangakkara delays India's victory

Sri Lanka's captain Kumar Sangakkara scored an unbeaten century to delay India's victory bid in the third and final Test here on Saturday.

Mind games begin

The scene is set for World Cup 2010 and already the mind games have begun.

Loew taking nothing for granted

Despite an unbeaten qualifying campaign, Germany coach Joachim Loew insists his side can take nothing for granted as they front up to Australia, Ghana and Serbia in World Cup Group D.

'Hosts not afraid'

South Africa coach Carlos Alberto Parreira said the host nation was not afraid of any of the teams it drew in Group A of the 2010 World Cup.

Drogba's worst nightmare

Didier Drogba had a wish not to face England in the first round of the 2010 World Cup granted here on Friday, but that is where his happiness ended.

Bayern go third

Germany striker Mario Gomez hit his third goal in his third consecutive Bundesliga game on Friday night to help Bayern Munich seal a 2-1 win over Borussia Moenchengladbach to go third in the table.

World Cup prize money

Prize money for 2010 World Cup from June 11 to July 11 in South Africa:

Spain to choose WC base

World Cup favourites Spain are due to choose Rustenburg, the mining city situated at altitude north east of Johannesburg, for their World Cup base, according to reports here Saturday.

Watson leads Aussie reply

Shane Watson and Brendan Nash were teammates at Queensland three seasons ago. Now Test opponents, their contrasting ninety-somethings on the second day kept the century-old scoreboard at the Adelaide Oval whirring as both Australia and West Indies racked up hefty numbers that ensured both teams were still in the contest with three days to play.

Kiwis stare at defeat

Two reasons emerged from the Basin Reserve for Test cricket to live long and live fruitful. Mohammad Yousuf first reminded, in this age of Virender Sehwag and Tillakaratne Dilshan, that there was once another way to bat in Test cricket, his patient, educated 83 enabling Pakistan to set New Zealand 405 for victory. And when the chase began, the genius of Mohammad Asif torpedoed it, in a typically cunning and persevering ten-over new-ball spell of Test virtues. At the end of it all, Pakistan stood on the brink of their first Test win in 12 matches and nearly three years, New Zealand staggering at 70 for 3.

Spain take charge

Spain were on course to claim their second consecutive Davis Cup title after David Ferrer came back from two sets down to beat Radek Stepanek and leave the hosts 2-0 up here on Friday.

Dhaka Sports Carnival

The four-day Prime Bank Dhaka Sports Carnival, organised by Dhaka Club, in association with Kurmitola Golf Club, Cadet College Club, Gulshan Club and Uttara Club, is concluding today.

O'Brien to retire

Iain O'Brien, the New Zealand fast bowler, will retire from international cricket at the end of the Test series against Pakistan to move to the UK to be with his wife and play for Middlesex.

Business

Three state banks move up ranks

Bangladesh Bank (BB) in its latest CAMELS rating has upgraded the position of three state-owned banks (SOBs), but Rupali Bank failed to achieve any improvement.

GP emerges as new market mover

Grameenphone (GP) has been the new market mover since its November 16 debut on bourses.

Honda's green cars to roam streets

More green cars are poised to hit the streets in Bangladesh with the launch of Honda's Civic Hybrid.

Knitting tech fair starts Dec 10

The three-day second Knit+Tex Bangladesh 2009 exposition will start on December 10 at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre in Dhaka.

Sales of hybrid rice seed go slack

Hybrid rice seed sales go sluggish, as growers are losing interest in it mainly because of low market price of coarse rice, officials of leading seed companies said yesterday.

Fears of loss loom over Akhaura port

Akhaura land port is likely to incur a loss of Tk 90 lakh a day until Tuesday due to the construction of a box culvert by the Roads and Highways Department (RHD) in Brahmanbaria.

Dubai must build up finance, tourism: Analysts

Dubai remains a regional hub for finance and tourism but must build up those sectors to replace the construction industry, as the emirate's economic growth grinds to a halt amid the global economic crisis, analysts said.

AKTEL Kaptai network opens

Post and Telecommuni-cations Minister Rajiuddin Ahmed Raju formally inaugurated the AKTEL network at Kaptai upazila in Rangamati hill district yesterday.

Eastern Refinery plans big for expansion

Modernisation of the state-run Eastern Refinery Limited (ERL) is now government's active consideration, as it wants to resolve the country's fuel crisis, State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Enamul Haque has said.

Metro Spinning declares 25pc bonus shares

Metro Spinning Ltd has declared stock dividends for fiscal 2008-09 at its 53rd meeting of the board of directors on Thursday, the company said in a statement.

Trade thru' Benapole resumes

Import-export trade between India and Bangladesh through Benapole land port resumed yesterday morning after remaining suspended for two days as Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPM) enforced Bandth (general strike) in Indian state of West Bengal.

Bailouts for UK banks hit 850b pounds

Britain's financial support including guarantees for its ailing banks has hit 850 billion pounds since the start of the crisis, a watchdog report said on Friday, amid tensions over bankers' bonuses.

No hidden cost: StanChart

Standard Chartered Bank believes in competition. It does not price any product out of the market.

Obama hails jobs hope

US President Barack Obama said rare good news on jobs Friday came just in time for the "season of hope" but added millions of Americans still felt the "gut punch" of unemployment.

Asian markets mixed

Asian markets were mixed Friday as investors took profits after recent gains, following a decline on Wall Street ahead of the release of a key jobs report amid worries over the US economy.

Dubai crisis hits Saudi stocks

Saudi stocks dropped 2.3 percent but then recovered slightly in early trading on Saturday as Dubai's troubles spread to the Gulf's largest equities market by capitalisation.

Oil prices up

Oil prices rallied Friday following news of shrinking unemployment in the United States, the world's biggest energy-consuming nation.

Maldives gets $92.5m bailout from IMF

The IMF has approved a 92.5-million-dollar bailout package to help the Maldives weather the global financial crisis, the international lender announced Saturday.

Yahoo!, Microsoft ink web search agreement

Yahoo! and Microsoft announced Friday that they have finalised the details of their planned Internet search and advertising partnership.

GE to buy $345m of ads from NBC Universal

General Electric Co. has promised to buy at least $345 million in advertising from NBC Universal over five years after selling a controlling stake in the entertainment company to Comcast Corp., according to a regulatory filing Friday.

Taiwan aims to create 99,000 jobs next year

Taiwan aims to create 99,000 jobs next year to bring down unemployment numbers lingering near record highs as a result of the global financial crisis, the government said Friday.

Weekly Currency Roundup

November 29th-December 3rd, 2009
International Markets
This week there was a lot of focus on yen strength against the dollar. The recent strength of the yen had attracted the attention of the Japanese government and recent statements indicated that they were open to intervening in the market. The big newsmaker was the news coming out was the troubles of Dubai World, which had to reschedule its debt. This had a massive impact on risk aversion which had boosted the dollar in midweek, and the commodity market had taken a large correction on that day. However further positive news coming out of the US again boosted risk taking, which contributed to dollar weakness and commodities again gaining steam. The yen was on the defensive on Thursday on growing investor speculation Japan may take more quantitative easing steps to get the economy out of deflation and as prospects of currency intervention loomed large. Talk of intervention got a boost after Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama said the yen's recent rise could not be left alone. Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirofumi Hirano later downplayed Hatoyama's remarks, but that did not deter investors from selling the yen. The yen extended its fall against the dollar; with stop-loss sell orders getting triggered It lost 0.9 percent in the previous session -- its largest daily loss versus the greenback in six weeks.

Metropolitan

Deal with Tipai issue properly to protect national interest

Speakers at a BBC Sanglap (dialogue) in Sylhet city yesterday said the Tipaimukh issue should be dealt properly to safeguard the national interest.

'Formulate master plan to resolve water crisis'

Speakers at a discussion yesterday called for formulating a master plan for water supply to ease water crisis across the country.

Call to amend Upazila Act

A group of chairmen and vice-chairmen of Upazila Parishads (UZ) yesterday put forwarded a 10-point demand to the government, including cancellation of some sections in the Upazila Parishad Act 2009.

Leadership quality of youths vital for development

The leadership quality of youths needs to be sharpened to develop the country fast, said speakers at the launching ceremony of a month-long youth leadership programme in the city yesterday.

Distribution of PSC application forms at UP level contemplated

The government is planning to distribute different types of job application forms under PSC, including that of BCS, from union level, aiming to reduce harassment of rural jobseekers.

Mamata to discuss issue of immigration clearance time with Hasina

Indian Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee yesterday said she would take up with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, who is scheduled to visit India later this month, the issue of reducing the time for immigration clearance on both sides of the border between India and Bangladesh.

Falling groundwater level in Barind region alarming for irrigations

Scanty rainfall and excessive extraction of groundwater has created an alarming situation among the Barind people and others about irrigation in the forthcoming IRRI-boro season.

Discussion on Ataur Rahman Khan tomorrow

A discussion will be held on the eventful life and contribution of Ataur Rahman Khan, former chief minister of East Pakistan and ex-prime minister of the Bangladesh at national graveyard near the Sangsad Bhaban at 9:00am tomorrow on the occasion of his 18th death anniversary, says a press release.

Suhrawardy's anniversary of death observed

The 46th death anniversary of Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawardy, one of the greatest leaders in the undivided India, was observed in the country yesterday through different programmes.

Safe waterway demanded

Social rights activists at a token protest rally yesterday demanded safe waterway for the country's poor people who are the worst sufferers.

Muggers attack UNDP staff

A gang of four muggers attacked a UNDP employee and snatched money and cellphone sets from him at Banani in the city on Friday night, leaving him critically injured.

Distribution of admission forms for govt schools begins

Distribution of admission forms for admissions to the government schools began in the city yesterday.

CCC, CDA assures support for developing AUW campus

Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) and Chittagong Development Authority (CDA) on Friday assured Asian University for Women (AUW) of all-out support for developing its main campus.

Gharial on the verge of extinction

Gharial (Gavialis gangeticus), one of the three crocodilian species found in the wild in Bangladesh, is on the verge of extinction and it is presumed that there are no breeding adults in the wild.

Three murdered

Three people were murdered at Nayabazar in city and South Keraniganj yesterday.

Akhter Ahmed's janaza today

Namaz-e-janaza for former BFUJ Secretary General and Minister (Press) to Bangladesh embassy in Washington Akhter Ahmed Khan will be held at the National Press Club in the city at 10:00am today.

Enact law against caste-based discrimination

Representatives from the Dalit community yesterday demanded enactment of a special law establishing caste-based discrimination as a punishable offence.

Tk 70 lakh VoIP equipment seized in Ctg

Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) in cooperation with Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) in separate drives seized illegal Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) equipment worth around Tk 70 lakh in the port city on Thursday and yesterday.

8 injured as AL factions clash over jhut business

At least eight people were injured in a clash between two factions of Awami League over 'Jhut' (garments wastage) business at Konabari in Gazipur yesterday.

Two killed in road crashes

Two people were killed in separate road accidents in Magura and Gopalganj yesterday.

Journalist Mozammel passes away

Mohammad Mozammel Huq, a senior journalist and former press secretary to former prime minister Khaleda Zia, passed away due to prolonged illness at his residence in the city last night at the age of 58.

National

Implement CHT peace deal fully to ensure development: Larma

Chairman of CHT Regional Council Jyotirindra Bodhipriya Larma alias Santu Larma yesterday again urged the government to activate the regional and hill district councils for development of the region.

Kidnapping and killing by outlaws now rampant in SW region

"If I had Tk 15 lakh, I could have bought my son's life from his captors," said Arif Hasan, the bereaved father of Mehedi Hasan Sohag who was recently abducted and killed by the cadres of outlawed Purbo Banglar Communist Party.

Police not taking Mongal murder case, family says

Family members of a murdered indigenous person in Birganj upazila of Dinajpur have alleged that police is intimidating the victim's family instead of recording the murder case.

Thousands from two villages protest drug peddling

Several thousand people from all walk of life on Friday brought out a procession protesting sale of harmful drugs in villages.

Police submit preliminary probe report

The three-member probe committee formed by police in Chittagong has completed a preliminary investigation into the plundering of green forest at Sonaichhari coast in Sitakunda.

Three bombs recovered

Police on Friday night recovered three 'powerful' bombs from Radhakantpur village in Sadar upazila of Meherpur district.

Jhenidah was freed from Pak forces on this day

December 6 is Jhenidah free day.

Stern action if any dealer sells fake fertiliser

The government will take stern action against the dealers found selling adulterated fertilisers and insecticides to the farmers, Agriculture Minister Matia Chowdhury warned yesterday.

10 injured as bus catches fire in Sirajganj

At least 10 people were injured as a passenger bus caught fire in Sirajganj while a godown was gutted in a devastating fire in Rangpur yesterday.

Martyrdom of 5 FFs recalled

A memorial meeting on martyrdom anniversary of freedom fighters was held at Muktinagar High School under Shaghata upazila in the district on Friday.

10 robbers held in Sylhet, Rangpur

At least ten robbers were arrested on Thursday and Friday in Sylhet and Rangpur districts.

Outlaw held, arms recovered

Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) on Friday night arrested a hardened member of outlawed PBCP (Purba Banglar Communist Party) ML faction Janajudhho from village Shimulachara. The elite force also recovered a shutter gun and two bullets from the spot. The arrestee is Md. Abdus Sattar (30) son of Niamat Ali of village Kaizuri in Ataikula thana in Pabna.

Peasant leader killed at Satkhira

President of Bangladesh Krishak Sangram Samity Saifullah Laskar was murdered by unidentified assailants in the town early yesterday.

Prisoner dies

An under-trial prisoner at Chapainawabganj district jail died allegedly of cardiac arrest at Adhunik Sadar Hospital yesterday morning.

Fugitive criminal held

A hardened criminal sentenced to 32 years of rigorous imprisonment by a court 23 years ago in connection with a murder case was arrested by detective police on Friday morning from a shrimp enclosure at Arashnagar village under Dumuria upazila. Arrestee Abdul Majid Biswas, now 62, is son of late Arjan Ali Biswas of Tolna village under same upazila. According to police, fugitive Majid was the lone accused in a case filed in 1986 with Phultala police station for murdering fish trader Abed Ali of Piprail Bazar. The killing took place on March 12 while the case was recorded on the following day, police said. The accused went into hiding soon after committing the murder. The court of Khulna District and sessions Judge after trying the case in absentia sentenced Majid to 32 years and six months jail.

2 held on abduction charge

Two young men were arrested on Thursday night on charge of kidnapping two teenage girls at Bakdokra Dangapara village in Domar upazila. The arrested persons are Hamidul Islam, 25, of Jadurhat Berabhanga village in Sadar upazila and Mahazin Hossain, 24, of Panialpukur village in Kishoreganj upazila. Locals said, Munni, 14, a student of class VII and daughter of Abul Hossain of Bakdokra Dangapara village, fell in love with Mahazin after they came to know each other over mobile phone. After some days, Mahazin tactfully picked up Munni and her friend Parvin, 14, daughter of Zahurul Islam and took them to the house of Hamidul of nearby Berabhanga village while the girls were returning home from their school. They confined the two in the house for 16 days. On secret information, family members of Munni and Parvin rescued them on November 30. Later, they also caught Mahazir and Hamidul on December 3 and handed them over to police. A case was filed in this connection.

Housewife beaten to death

A woman was beaten to death allegedly by her husband for dowry at Ramkrishna village under Solonga police station on Friday. The victim was identified as Sonavan, 28, wife of Alal Sheikh of the village. Police said, Sonavan, daughter of Khurshed Mondal of Rupsara village, was married to Alal seven years ago. Alal used to torture her frequently for dowry since their marriage. On the fateful day, Alal beat his wife mercilessly following an altercation over the issue at about 12 noon, leaving her dead on the spot. On information, police recovered the body and sent it to hospital morgue for autopsy. Alal went into hiding after the incident. A case was filed.

Criminals stab trader

Criminals stabbed a paddy trader grievously at Zamtali in Singra upazila and looted Tk 2.40 lakh from him on Friday morning. Locals said trader Moinul Islam of Chanchkai area of Gurudaspur upazila went to Singra to buy paddy. Two local criminals, Jewel and Raja, who followed Moinul stabbed indiscriminately and took away his money. The incident took place while Moinul was going to Banshbaria bazaar from Zamtali at about 11 am. The victim was rushed to Rajshahi Medical College Hospital in critical condition. A case was filed.

Man held with 50 cartridges

Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) personnel on Thursday arrested a man along with 50 cartridges from Dakkhin Bagha in Golapganj upazila.. The arrestee was identified as Shahabuddin, 55, of Bagha village in the upazila. Acting on secret information, a team of the elite force conducted a drive in the area at noon and arrested Shahabuddin. A case was filed in this connection.

Drug peddler arrested

Benapole port police on Friday night arrested a drug peddler from Namag village under Sharsha upazila in Jessore district. Arrestee Mahamudul Hasan, 25, is son of Monir Kasai of the same village. Police said, acting on a tip-off, a team of the police conducted a raid in the village and arrested him with 50 bottles of Indian contraband phensidyl. Hasan was handed over to the local police station and a case was filed.

Scouts rally in Rajbari

A five-day-long scouts programme began in the town on Friday. Inaugurated at Baliakandi Stadium it was jointly organised by Bangladesh scout Baliakandi upazila unit and Baliakandi upazila administrator. Lawmaker (Rajbari-2) Zillul Hakim attended the inaugural session as the chief guest and joined a rally. On the occasion, a discussion was also held at the stadium. A total of 300 scouts from 30 high schools are taking part in the programme.

Letters

Launch capsize

Launch capsize is taking place on a regular basis. The value of life is greatly undermined in our context. We lost many lives and still are losing scores of lives in launch mishaps. The noticeable thing is that most of the launch mishaps occur during various festivals when people go to their village homes to share their happiness with near & dear ones. What a tragedy!

Our forests

Thanks a lot for the DS and Inam Ahmed for bringing the issue before the public. This story reveals that our forestry sector is in great disarray. Simply because we do not know what the bottom tier is doing or are they intentionally ignorant of the happenings inside all the forests in the country.

Saving Buriganga!

I want to know from authorities what precise actions are being taken for saving the Buriganga river. Many articles have been written on this issue but no one seems to take care of it at all. Our future generation will be in deep trouble if we ourselves do not take any action now.

Washington's observations

Recently, I visited President George Washington's home at Mount Vernon near Washing DC. It is now a historical site opened to public. While going around the stately mansion, the tour guide said something interesting. He said that President Washington believed that a free press and an independent legal system are "two guardian angels of democracy" and when any one of them is threatened, democracy is threatened.

Monkey menace!

Recently I visited one of my relative's house who lives in Rajar Deuri in old town. In the compound and on the roof I saw a number of monkeys strolling freely and attempting to take away anything from inside the house including foods and clothes. I came to know that monkeys frequent all the houses of the old town area. Not only they take away essential household items but often attacks and hurts children and adults. It has been gathered that due to the destruction of natural habitats adjacent to Buriganga river, monkeys have become shelter-less and they are not getting enough food for their survival.

Debt burden

The global economy is heading toward a sustained recovery but given the risks of another downturn it is too soon to withdraw stimulus, International Monetary Fund Deputy (IMF) managing director John Lipsky said on Friday. “We think that we are on a trajectory toward sustained growth but that the recovery is going to be relatively moderate and relatively sluggish,”

Valuable information

Migration applicants are advised to be careful about the “Positive Profession/ Profession List”. The population of developed countries is decreasing day by day for various reasons and for that they are recruiting people from developing or less developed countries around the world. Canada, Australia, New Zealand are well known in this regard for a long time. They are recruiting people in different categories like skill category, entrepreneur category and investment category. Among all these. they handle the most number of applications in skill category. There is an age bar to apply in this category. For example, 49 years for Canada, 45 years for Australia and 40 years for Denmark. Beside this there are some other criteria like education and work experience. If you want to apply in skill category, you should have at least bachelor's degree and minimum one year work experience. Most of the counselling or migration firms counsel the prospective clients keeping all these in mind. But above all these criteria there is another important point to make an immigration application which is the profession list. Profession list is always changing. Denmark has named the profession list as “Positive List” and Australia has named it “Skill Occupation List”. In most cases it is seen that applicants who are submitting applications on their own are not fully aware of the Profession list. There are some firms who are alluring all types of professionals to submit applications without considering the profession or occupation list. For that, candidates are being cheated.

Prepaid gas meters

Titas Gas Transmission & Distribution Company Ltd is going to introduce prepaid gas meters for its residential consumers in the city's Dhanmondi area. This is a very good idea. This will check misuse of gas by consumers. Besides consumers will not have to wait in queue for hours at banks. To preserve our valuable gas, this new system should be introduced everywhere in our country, especially in Dhaka city.

National interests

Mr. Menon, Shahidullah and Anu Mohammad are vocal about national interest. As a remitter of foreign currency I join with them. The govt has to come to the media and open a debate.

Rethink about DST

Do the policymakers know that the salatul Fazar ends at 7:00am now? After a few days it will be shifted 10 to 20 minutes later. Then how is it rationale and possible to start schools by 8:00am and offices at 9:00am? It's simply meaningless! Revert to Bangladesh Standard Time, please.

Death sentence

While the Amnesty International is deeply concerned to hear that Fatima Hussein al-Badi is facing execution in Yemen for killing her husband a crime that the Supreme Court found she did not take part in. So that international organization has called on us to commute the death sentence against Fatima Hussein al-Badi, who was convicted after an unfair trial and an unfair process. It also appealed that all the people facing the death penalty in Yemen must be tried in accordance with international standards for fair trial, including ensuring that they all have access to legal representation and adequate time and facilities to prepare their case and people facing the death penalty, like Fatima, must be granted the opportunity to appeal the verdict and sentence and the right to seek pardon or commutation of the sentence.

History of the armed forces

I commend The Daily Star: Internet Edition for the front page coverage on the 38th Bangladesh Armed Forces Day observed on November 21, 2009, although one would have appreciated an editorial on that big occasion.

Historic day

November 19, 2009 is a memorable day for all of us. The reason is not unknown to us at all. We have won the battle of justice after 34 years. From today people will remember this day with full satisfaction and pride as well. Satisfaction is for the justice to the late president Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and his family members and pride for being able to erase the disgrace of the massacre of 15 August 1975. This day has also raised the hope of ordinary people for justice being meted out to the four national leaders killed in jail on 3 November 1975 and also the trial of war criminals. Similarly, it has made us more confident that our law has its own power to control crime and punish the criminals and it has regained the almost lost faith of ordinary people. Moreover it has changed the proverb that, IF IT IS DELAYED, IT IS DENIED because this litigation has been delayed but not denied. It's true that after a long time, we have got our desired verdict.

Armed forces

Their role is appreciated whenever they come forward to strengthen the democratic culture in the country. The way they played their role in 1991,1996 and 2007 will be remembered with due honour. The introduction of voter ID is the most unique example of their commitment and sincerity in protecting the rights of the common men of our country. But I feel sorry when I notice how a section of the armed forces has been desperately trying to distort the history of their motherland. It was not their business to show who is our number one leader in the Liberation War. It is clear like daylight who led our war and under whose name the Liberation War was fought. But it was a willing suspension of a truth on which the country was founded. These ambivalent characters are always boneless and they are the beneficiaries of every regime. Now it is time to identify those characters to bring a change in different sectors, including Armed Forces.

Terrorism

Terrorism is an integral part of South Asian landscape. It is now termed as the number one problem in the present world. Lots of people are the victims of its gruesome proliferation.

Diplomats abroad

The diplomats of our country are our representatives abroad. They are the most educated and are supposed to be sober and, of course, intelligent. They look after the interests and well-being of our country. But unfortunately some of our diplomats misrepresent our country. On an official tour to one of the South-Asian countries last year, I had to encounter an ambassador who even denied meeting me in his office. Because he was busy! Since I went to his office on a courtesy call, I came back dejected. We hear lot of allegations of our labour force from the Middle-East where they fail to reach the high ups of the embassy who remain 'very busy' there.

Rickshaws

A huge debate is going on in this page on the rickshaws, but no one thinks about the rickshaw pullers. Most rickshaw pullers are people migrating from rural areas. At present there is acute unemployment and hence an increase in crimes like mugging. No doubt there will be a massive problem if the rickshaws are removed because the roads in many places are so narrow. Removal of rickshaws will definite increase poverty and taxi cabs and CNG scooters cannot replace them instantly.

Asian Highway

'Think thrice before you step' is the golden advice of the intellectuals, men of wisdom and great statesmen, to all.

Breaking news

This refers to the letter by Mr Asaddar Ali, FCA of Metropolitan University with reference to Bangabandhu murder case court verdict, under the caption: "Breaking News" as published at The Daily Star on December 02, 2009.

Pay raise

The ruling party immediately upon installation of the government had declared formation of a committee for the revision of government officials' salary scales and as a sequel to that the revised pay scales of the government staff were announced recently, where the highest salary is 40,000 plus other benefits and lowest is 4, 000 the, the difference of ration is 1:10.

International

Pakistan needs to destroy terror safe havens: US

The United States has said Pakistan as a 'nuclear state' was well aware of its 'enormous responsibilities' that included working in 'close partnership' with Washington to dislodge, dismantle and destroy terrorist 'safe havens' in the country,

Five die as Maoists clash with Nepal police

One police officer and four activists were killed Friday in a clash between police and Maoists in western Nepal, a government official said.

Fire kills 20 at karaoke bar in Indonesia

Indonesian police yesterday questioned a man they believed accidentally started a fire in a crowded karaoke bar that killed 20 people.

Afghan offensive meets little Taliban resistance

US Marines and Afghan troops, conducting the first offensive since the new American war plan was announced, met little resistance from insurgents Saturday as they worked to disrupt Taliban supply and communications lines in a key valley in southern Afghanistan.

Ayodhya Muslims recall horror of Babri mosque demolition

On the eve of the 17th anniversary of the demolition of Babri mosque in Ayodhya, some Muslims organisations here recalled the event that resulted in horror in various parts of the country.

Lanka still holding 11,000 Tamil prisoners

Despite claiming that it has freed all Tamil civilians this week, Sri Lanka is still holding over 11,000 Tamil prisoners, including children without charge in closely guarded "rehabilitation centres."

'Iran needs 20 uranium enrichment sites'

Iran's vice president said yesterday his country needs 20 industrial-scale uranium enrichment facilities, a potentially dramatic expansion of its nuclear programme in defiance of UN demands.

Pak Taliban claim responsibility

The Tehreeke-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has taken responsibility for Friday's ghastly suicide attack on the Parade Lane mosque here, saying the mosque was "demolished on the orders of Prophet Muhammad."

Expanding civil nuclear coop tops Manmohan's Russian agenda

Close on the heels of his visit to Washington, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh heads for Moscow Sunday on a three-day trip with expansion of civil nuclear cooperation and an extended defence pact topping the agenda.

Obama shifts Copenhagen trip timing

President Barack Obama is shifting the timing of his visit to an international climate summit in Copenhagen as prospects for a political agreement at the event seem more likely.

Philippines nets clan chief, declares emergency

The Philippine president imposed martial law yesterday on a southern province and security forces detained the patriarch of a powerful clan and three of his sons, accusing them of massacring 57 people and fomenting a rebellion.

Amanda Knox guilty, jailed for 26 years

American Amanda Knox was found guilty early yesterday along with her former Italian boyfriend in the 2007 sex murder of her British housemate Meredith Kercher and sent to prison for 26 years.

Qaeda leadership in Quetta, claims US diplomat

While the US has been raising concern about the presence of top Taliban commanders in Pakistan, it has now claimed that some al-Qaeda leaders are also hiding in Quetta, capital of Baluchistan.

Bush, Blair's war on Iraq was illegal: Hans Blix

George W Bush and Tony Blair were orchestrating a witch-hunt against late Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein that ended with Iraq war which "in my view was illegal", a former UN weapons inspector has said.

Three killed in NW Pakistan accidental blast

At least three people were killed and 13 others wounded in an accidental explosion at a building in Pakistan's northwestern city of Peshawar yesterday, officials said.

Arts & Entertainment

Homage to Dr Nowazesh Ahmed in Faridpur

Nishorgo Sangsad, a group of nature lovers from Faridpur, held a memorial meeting to pay homage to the celebrated agricultural scientist and photographer Dr. Nowazesh Ahmed recently. The veteran photographer passed away from a cardiac arrest on November 24.

Lens man JA Akash captures the award

JA Akash is the winner of the photography contest of 'Celebrating Life 2009'. Initiated by The Daily Star and Standard Chartered Bank, the award recognises excellence in photography. Shortly after his win, an elated Akash had a chat with this correspondent on a gamut of subjects:

A slice of life

The story of a father and child separated by circumstances but trying to reach out to each other was the common theme of the three films which received the top awards at the International Film Festival of India in Goa this year.

Leonardo DiCaprio to voice animated film

Leonardo DiCaprio is to make his animated debut as the voice of Jack The Frost in forthcoming film The Guardians, according to reports.

Musical programme on Hason Raja on Banglavision

To commemorate the death anniversary of bard Hason Raja, a musical programme titled "Ki Ghar Banabo Aami" will be aired on Banglavision tonight. Produced by Kawnain Shourav, the programme will go on air at 6:05pm.

Drama serial “Dorakata” on Rtv

Drama serial "Dorakata" will be aired tonight on Rtv at 9pm. The serial has been jointly scripted by Aminur Rahman Mukul and Mahfuza Hilali and directed by Sumon Anwar.

Music all the way

An Eid reunion was recently held at Panchthupi Nasratpur High School, Dhunat, Bogra. The event featured local and guest artistes who gave musical performances.

OP-ED

'Frozen in Time?'

"Justice must not only be done, but must be seen to be done"

Crime, Punishment and Historic Non-Apologies

TWO outstanding issues dominate the horizon of post-war Bangladesh: the lingering memory of morbid war crimes, and the provocative question of a convincing apology from the aggressors. On the matter of war crimes, at least those committed by errant Bangalis, it is within the jurisdiction of the laws of the country, and within the reach and scope of the Government of Bangladesh, to institute legal proceedings without any further or secondary consideration. Unlike the international war on terror, these are Bangladeshi citizens, on Bangladeshi soil, answerable to Bangladeshi law. This law, covering war crimes committed on Bangladesh territory, during the war of liberation, was enacted by Act of Parliament, as far back as 1973. There is no question of torture or coercion, and absolutely no need for the bizarre and brazenly illegal practice of rendition.

The Ticking Clock

"Nothing is forgotten, nothing is forgiven"

Justice, the General and His Soldier

IN January 1988, Col. Yehuda Meir ordered his troops to round up twenty Palestinian men from Hawara and Beita in the West Bank, bind them in handcuffs and blindfolds, and break their bones. The unit commander reporting to Meir passed on the order to his troops, but also told them he did not require them to comply. Some soldiers refrained from doing so, but others carried out the order with such zeal that they broke their truncheons.


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