The Daily Star

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Saturday, April 7, 2018

News of: Friday, 18th of December, 2009

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Khulna under grave risk

Khulna, the southern metropolis of Bangladesh, has been identified as one of the 15 most vulnerable cities under climate change impact.

Inflation shoots up by 46pc in a month

Inflation rate on point-to-point basis has increased by 46 percent in a month and stood at 6.71 percent in October mainly because of rising food price.

4 rivers declared ecologically critical

Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) on December 15 declared the four rivers and its foreshores, adjacent to the capital, ecologically critical to save the rivers from encroachers and pollution.

Khaleda wants 25pc more carbon cut

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia yesterday hoped that the Copenhagen climate conference would bring an international global charter with the developed nations promising to cut carbon emission by 25 percent more than they promised in the Kyoto Protocol.

Coco-4 capsized for overloading

The two inquiry committees, formed to investigate the recent ferry disasters in Bhola and Kishoreganj, made public their reports yesterday.

Light to control 600 intersections

Dhaka Metropolitan Police wants to bring around 600 more intersections in the capital under the automated traffic signal system and make all existing signal lights operative to further improve traffic situation.

Text released

The convicts on death row in Bangabandhu assassination case will get copy of the historic Supreme Court (SC) judgement on Sunday.

New climate deal may have to wait

The climate deal prospect looked bleak yesterday as 119 heads of state and government attending the UN climate summit in Copenhagen struggled to bury the differences between the developed and developing nations over the issue of carbon emission cut.

Civil surgeons lose control over drugs

To ensure transparency and curb corruption, the government has decided to strip civil surgeons of the authority to procure drugs, putting the responsibility on its Central Medicine Store Depot (CMSD) from now.

World leaders pledge support

World Leaders assured Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina of standing by Bangladesh in its grim fight against the climate change impacts on human life, ecology, economy and agriculture.

Law secy's appointment illegal

The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday upheld the High Court (HC) verdict that declared illegal the appointment of Kazi Habibul Awal as law secretary.

More EC grant for Aila-hit people

The European Commission (EC) has allocated a further 5 million euro to continue the humanitarian assistance to the Aila-affected people of the country's southwestern region.

Ruling party men beat up two journos

Jubo League men beat up two newsmen at Dhunat upazila in Bogra leaving them badly injured last night because of publication of reports against their activities on December 16.

Body formed to probe offences

The government formed a four-member commission yesterday to conduct a probe into the offences against minorities and supporters of opposition parties that took place just after the 2001 parliamentary elections.

Solar panels light up remote CHT

Electricity generated from solar panels in remote parts of Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) is helping indigenous communities to involve themselves in new income-generating activities.

Police hiring before Jan 5

The government yesterday decided in principle to complete all procedures for appointing over 17,000 police personnel ahead of "Police Week 2010" to be held from January 5, officials said.

Third BDR trial begins in Feni Sunday

The third trial in connection with the BDR mutiny on February 25-26 will start in Feni on Sunday.

EC moves to discourage dummy candidates

A mayoral candidate in Dhaka City Corporation (DCC) polls will have to deposit Tk 1 lakh as security as the Election Commission (EC) yesterday finalised a proposal to increase the amount ten times to discourage dummy candidates.

Kashem obtains SC stay

The Supreme Court yesterday stayed for six weeks the High Court judgement that had declared the parliamentary membership of Jatiya Party (JP) lawmaker Abul Kashem illegal and void.

Ashura on Dec 28

The holy Ashura will be observed across the country on December 28, as the moon of Muharram month was not sighted yesterday.

Pakistan court strikes down graft amnesty

Pakistan's president faced fresh calls to step down yesterday after the Supreme Court struck down an amnesty that had protected the increasingly unpopular leader and several of his political allies from corruption charges.


Bangladesh leader's call in Copenhagen

PRIME Minister Sheikh Hasina has made a plea in the Copenhagen summit for compensatory grants and easily accessible, adequate funds to be made available to countries vulnerable to climate change to help them help themselves. Indeed, the Bangladesh leader's expression of sentiments was a reflection not only of the risks to which her own country is today exposed but also a tale of other, poorer nations at present threatened by the climate deluge. The fact that narrowing down of differences is yet to happen even at the final moments may well have raised the temperature but this is not something exceptional either, given the dynamic of competing concerns and the hectic quest for establishing common denominators for an agreement.

A mind-boggling incident

THE death of a woman at the hands of a so-called manpower agent and his hired goons has been as shocking as it is outrageous. We have no words strong enough to condemn the incident resulting from a dehumanised reaction to a legitimate demand for a refund of money consequent upon a breach of contract.

Diamonds of death

IN 2001, a CNN study showed that rings made up 79% of diamond jewellery sales in the world. Human rights activists have got a more disturbing contention. As high as 10% of diamonds from the conflict areas of Africa find their way onto the fingers in New York, London, Paris and Rome. That's the way of our civilisation! One man's gift is another man's grief.

Parliamentary perks

ACCORDING to a newspaper report, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina recently gave her approval to a proposal for providing full-time cars to 345 MPs instead of continuing the existing privilege of duty-free import of cars. The government has done well to scrap this privilege, which has been a subject of strong public criticism since its introduction in 1987 during the regime of HM Ershad.


GP-BCB bond extended

Grameenphone has been retained as official sponsors of the national cricket team for a further two years after they increased their amount from their offered price in the bidding. However the sponsorship deal this time will also cover the national women's team.

Resigned hockey players return

National hockey players have returned to their camp hardly a day after tendering their resignation citing 'discriminating behaviour by the coach' as the reason for their walk-out.

Hurricane Gayle

Chris Gayle whipped up the fifth fastest century by balls faced in Test history as West Indies refused to be blown over on a dramatic and heated day in Perth. Gayle unleashed the controlled fury of a captain who had watched his bowlers struggle for penetration with a 70-ball hundred that catapulted his side to 2 for 214, a promising collection which still leaves them 306 behind, at stumps on the second day of the third Test against Australia.

Vital Super League ties today

Archrivals Mohammedan and Abahani play their respective opponents in the Super League matches of the Premier Division Cricket League today to make sure that their clash in the last round would be a title deciding affair.

Div I cricket

Orient Sporting Club secured an exciting one-wicket victory over City Club in the First Division Cricket Super League match at BKSP yesterday.

Yet another belter?

The bowlers of both India and Sri Lanka will head into Nagpur with the Rajkot run fest on their minds, but they won't get much relief from another hard track at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium when sides meet in the second one-day international today.

Proteas tail wags

`South Africa's lower order batsmen frustrated England as the host nation crawled past 400 on the second day of the first Test at SuperSport Park here on Thursday.

'England first'

Andrew Flintoff may have turned down a central contract but insists that England remain his top priority, ahead of several domestic Twenty20 deals.

Div I chess

Bangladesh Biman, Titas Club and I2 Soft Solution Limited share the lead in the points table with 14 points after the end of the ninth round of the Dutch-Bangla Bank 1st Division Chess League-2009. The games of the ninth round were held yesterday Thursday at the Chess Federation hall-room. In the ninth round matches: Biman beat Pradip Sangah Mahakhali by 4-0 points. Titas Club beat Sultana Kamal Smirity Pathagar by 4-0 points. I2 Soft Solution drew with Basir Memorial Chess Club 2-2. Dhaka Metropolitan Chess Club beat Farashgonjs Sporting Club by 2.5-1.5 points and Sonali Bank beat Jobs Vander Dot Com by 3.5-.5 points.

Blues back winning

Chelsea reclaimed their three-point lead at the top of the Premier League table after a hard-earned 2-1 win over bottom side Portsmouth on Wednesday.

Zamora fires Fulham

Fulham marched into the Europa League last 32 after Bobby Zamora's double inspired the Premier League side to a 3-2 win at FC Basel on Wednesday.

Inter reach last 8

Inter Milan eased into the Coppa Italia quarterfinals with a controlled and disciplined 1-0 win against Livorno at the San Siro on Wednesday.

A Barca masterclass

European champions Barcelona produced a masterclass to beat Mexican side Atlante 3-1 here on Wednesday and book their place in the World Club Cup final.

Bordeaux extend lead

A second-half strike by Brazilian midfielder Jussie earned French league leaders Bordeaux a 1-0 win at Montpellier on Wednesday that increased their lead at the summit to six points.

Troussier invited to N. Korea

Former Japan coach Philippe Troussier said Thursday he had been invited to visit North Korea, while a press report said he had been contacted for a possible job offer there.

Donovan inks new deal

Los Angeles Galaxy forward Landon Donovan signed a four-year contract extension Wednesday with the Major League Soccer club, paving the way for a loan to Everton of the English Premiership.

Loew to remain in charge till 2012

Germany coach Joachim Loew is set to sign a two-year extension to his current contract which will keep him in charge of the national side until 2012, it was revealed on Wednesday.

USA will visit Dutch for friendly

United States will visit Netherlands for a March 3 friendly at Amsterdam on the only FIFA fixture date before the start of final training for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

Scotland eye Levein

The Scottish Football Association (SFA) has asked Dundee United for permission to speak to their manager, Craig Levein, about taking charge of the national team.


Recession effects to linger over economy: ADB

Asian Development Bank yesterday projected Bangladesh's GDP growth at 5.2 percent for 2010, fearing continuous fallout from the global economic turmoil.

NBR to alter tax rules

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) is set to bring changes in VAT and customs regulations to simplify the taxation system, said the chairman of the board yesterday.

Southeast Bank under BB scanner

Bangladesh Bank (BB) has brought Southeast Bank (SEBL) under an 'early warning system', a method that alerts a bank when its performance goes below satisfactory level.

New criteria for mutual fund loans

The stock market regulator yesterday set new criteria for margin loans for mutual funds after about two months of suspension.

Tata Motors' global sales jump 62pc

India's largest vehicle maker, Tata Motors, said Thursday global sales, including those for Jaguar and Land Rover, rose 62 percent in November, aided by improved demand and last year's low sales base.

Ireland exits recession

Ireland emerged from a deep recession in the third quarter as it grew 0.3 percent compared with the previous three months, official data showed on Thursday.

Minister seeks foreign aid for mega projects

Bangladesh yesterday sought foreign help to implement several mega projects in the communications sector that would cost about $6.8 billion.

Dealers to distribute jute seeds among farmers

The government will soon take steps to procure and distribute jute seeds among farmers through appointing dealers across the country.

ADB expands trade finance

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has extended its trade finance facilitation programme (TFFP) in Bangladesh by inking 12 more agreements under the programme in Southeast Asia yesterday, said a press release.

Dhaka liberalises investment policy

Commerce Minister Faruk Khan here yesterday called upon Thai investors to invest more in Bangladesh's potential sectors as the country liberalized investment policy much more than other South Asian countries and announced the Industry Policy 2009 with a new vision.

Handlooms in the hills

In the morning chill in the hills, Malati Chakma was knitting a Pinon, a traditional shawl, on her house premises.

Treasury backs out of Citi plans

In a striking reversal of its attempts to unwind the government's financial stakes in big banks, the US Treasury Department has backed out of plans to sell its 34 percent stake in Citigroup.

Top central banks aim for tougher financial rules

Leading central bankers and national regulators said Thursday they were aiming to introduce proposals to strengthen international financial requirements on banks by the end of 2012.

Asian stocks lower as dollar rises

Asian shares were lower on liquidity fears Thursday, with a stronger dollar triggering capital outflows as upbeat Federal Reserve comments led to speculation about a US rate hike early next year.

Oil down in Asian trade

Oil prices were lower in Asian trade Thursday on profit-taking after an overnight rally, boosted by a report showing stronger US energy demand, analysts said.

New director for Bank Asia

Mashiur Rahman, a former managing director of IFIC Bank Ltd, joined Bank Asia as a director, said the bank in a statement yesterday.

HK jobless rate dips

Hong Kong's unemployment rate fell to 5.1 percent between September and November, official data showed Thursday, the third consecutive decline since the start of the global financial crisis.

Seminar on textile solutions

Textile manufacturing requires constant innovations in business practices, as it is one of the leading industries in the world, speakers said at a seminar yesterday.

Time Warner buys India's NDTV Imagine for $126.5m

Time Warner Inc said Thursday its board had approved the acquisition of Indian entertainment channel NDTV Imagine Ltd for 126.5 million dollars.

US Fed stays course, sees record low rates

The US Federal Reserve extended its record low interest rates Wednesday and reaffirmed this policy would remain in place "for an extended period" to support a still-precarious economic recovery.

Philippine economy survives storms to post growth

The Philippines will avoid recession and post growth of at least 0.8 percent this year, despite the effects of the global economic slump and a series of killer storms, the government said Thursday.

BMW says 8,800 workers will face shorter hours in January

The German luxury car maker BMW will put 8,800 workers on shorter working hours in January as it anticipates a slump in the sales of some models, a spokesman said on Thursday.

Corporate Briefs

The company has said the board of directors decided to apply to Central Depository Bangladesh for dematerialisation of the company's shares.


In the caption of Mercantile Bank Ltd, published yesterday, it was mistakenly mentioned that the 47th branch and the 18th ATM booth of the bank were inaugurated by its Chairman Md Abdul Jalil MP. Actually, Vice Chairman Golam Faruk Ahmed inaugurated the branch on Pragati Sarani and Jalil was present as chief guest. We regret the mistake.


War criminals to be brought to book: Hasina

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said the nation would get rid of the curse and stigma of the assassination of its founding father completely only after the execution of the verdict in the Bangabandhu murder case.

Change mindset towards children with special needs

Speakers at a workshop yesterday called on all to change their attitude towards the mentally challenged children and work together to bring them closer to the mainstream community.

Language barrier to good salary abroad: Nahid

Foreign language training would expedite the building of skilled human resources and boost their earnings in the labour markets, said Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid yesterday.

Dhaka college girl found dead in Sylhet

The body of a student of Badrunnesa Girls College in the capital was recovered yesterday afternoon from a hotel in Sylhet.

Court summons city school teacher

A Dhaka court yesterday issued summons upon a teacher of Motijheel Ideal School and College asking him to appear before it on March 31, 2010 in a case filed against him on charges of beating a student of class eight mercilessly in November this year.

Steps to build bridges at certain heights

The government has taken an initiative to ensure that the bridges over the rivers around the capital are constructed at certain heights as per recommendations of a task force so that they do not create obstacles to the movement of water vessels.

Journo Jawadur Rahman no more

Md Jawadur Rahman, a member of National Press Club, news manager of BSS and assistant editor of The Observer, passed away at his own residence at Maddyha Badda in the city on Wednesday at the age of 72, says a press release.

Four killed in road crashes

Four people were killed in separate road accidents at Shailokupa, Harinakundo and Kotchandpur in Jhenidah yesterday.

IOM for more financial aid for climate refugees

The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) has called for additional financial assistance for the developing countries to tackle climate change-induced migration of people, which is likely to accelerate in the coming days.

Dhaka reelected member

Bangladesh has been reelected unopposed a member of the UN Population Award Committee for three years.

Report handed over to BIISS director general

Australian High Commissioner Justin Lee and Minister of the Japanese Embassy Harumitsu Hida handed over the final report of the International Commission on Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament (ICNND) to Major General Sheikh Md Monirul Islam, director general of Bangladesh Institute for International and Strategic Studies (BIISS), at a ceremony at BIISS office yesterday.

Dhaka jail chief guard suspended

The Dhaka Central Jail authorities yesterday suspended the chief jail guard on charges of supplying drugs to the prisoners.

Girl dies in wall collapse

A minor girl was killed and five people were injured when a dilapidated wall collapsed on them at Segunbagicha in the city yesterday.

Farewell reception for chief justice, two SC judges

The Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) and the attorney general's office jointly hosted a farewell reception for three Supreme Court judges, including Chief Justice MM Ruhul Amin, who will go into retirement this month.

Appeal for help

Pinky, a student of Shaheed Mamun Mahmud Police Lines School in Rajshahi, has been suffering from heart abnormality, says a press release.

Coalmine Officers' Assoc executives

Habib Uddin Ahammad, deputy managing director (underground operations) and Khan Mohammad Zafar Sadik, manager (central), have been elected president and general secretary of the Barapukuria Coalmine Officers' Welfare Association at its election on December 14, says a press release.

Adamjee old boys' assoc AGM tomorrow

The annual general meeting of Ex-students Association of Adamjee Cantonment School and College (EXSAACSC) will be held at AKM Giasuddin Milki Auditorium at Khamarbari in the city's Farmgate area at 3:00pm tomorrow, says a press release.

Int'l Maths Confce begins

With a view to encouraging students to practice mathematics more, the 16th International Mathematics Conference began at Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet) yesterday.


Seed crisis ahead of boro season worries farmers

Farmers of Dinajpur, Panchagarh and Joypurhat districts are facing problem in preparing their seedbeds as Agriculture Extension Department (AED) has failed to ensure availability of sufficient seeds in the local markets.

Festivity, nostalgia for good old days mark CU day

Chittagong University Day was observed yesterday with a vow to contribute more to nation building activities.

Ctg fugitive criminal makes poster with fake identity

Mamunur Rashid Mamun, former ward commissioner and a fugitive criminal, stuck four-colour posters with fake identity to greet people on the occasion of the Victory Day raising eyebrows of city dwellers.

Boro cultivation facing setback due to salinity

The target of boro cultivation may not be achieved in the district in the current season as the seedlings on a vast of tract of land have been damaged due to high salinity and scarcity of water.

Police, villagers in Gopalganj beat up agitating students

At least 30 students of Gopalganj Polytechnic Institute were injured as police and villagers swooped on them during a road blockade programme at Gopalganj yesterday.

Rajshahi, Pabna had to wait for two more days

The nation as a whole had the final victory on December 16 in 1971 but the people of Rajshahi and Pabna had to wait for two more days to have the taste of freedom as the Pakistani occupation troops were desperately holding on a few camps there.

Charge framing date deferred to January 4

The Sylhet Divisional Speedy Trial Tribunal judge on Tuesday deferred charge framing in the case for 2004 bomb attack on the public meeting of Awami League leader lawmaker Suranjit Sengupta, setting the new date on January 4.

ACC asks BIWTA to investigate

Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) Barisal office on Tuesday asked Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) to submit report after investigating the allegation of corruption and irregularities in leasing Barisal Port.

Sweater factory closed

Calico sweater factory in Rasulpur area of Fazelpur in Fatulla under Sadar upazila was closed yesterday. The authorities in the morning pasted a notice at the factory gate saying they were compelled to shut down the unit for financial crisis. The workers brought out processions and agitated against the authorities for closing the factory without paying their dues. The factory was earlier laid off on October 19. The workers alleged that during the lay off period the factory authorities did not pay their dues as per labour law. They also alleged that workers were terminated without paying their wages. Fatulla model police station officer-in-charge (OC) Jibon Kanti Sarker said, the owners have announced that they would pay the workers wages on January 10.

Man stabbed to death

A man was stabbed to death allegedly by his former son-in-law at Noari Bazaar in Chhatak upazila of Sunamganj district yesterday. The victim was identified as Anwar Ali, 55, of the village. Locals said, speech-impaired Rois Ali of the village married Saleha Begum, daughter of Anwar Ali, a few years ago. Around eight months ago Rois was separated from wife following a family feud. As a sequel to the conflict, Rois stabbed his former father-in-law Anwar indiscriminately at the local Noari Bazaar at noon, leaving him dead on the spot. Police arrested Rois. A case was filed.

Kushtia robber killed

Body of a ringleader of robbers in Kushtia region was found in the remote shoal area of the district on Wednesday afternoon. Being informed, police recovered the body and handed it over to Khoksha police of Kushtia yesterday. Ringleader Abdus Salam, 35, hailing from Khoksha upazila is accused in several cases, police said. Salam's body was found at Khashchar village of Pabna Sadar upazila, said Matiur Rahman, officer-in-charge (OC) of Pabna police station.

Body recovered

A man was murdered by criminals at Ghona village in Sadar upazila on Tuesday. Police said, Ismail Hossain, 45, of Bharukhali village, went missing since he came out of his house to search his missing goat on Monday. Later, his body was found in a crop field. On information, police recovered the body and sent it to hospital morgue for autopsy.

Tea labourers hold rally

About two thousand tea garden labourers held a procession followed by a grand rally in court point area of the city on Sunday last protesting alleged grabbing of the office of central tea labourers union. The agitating labourers also burnt the effigies of two of their leaders -- Rajendra Prasad Banerjee and his son-in-law Bijoy Banerjee on charge of their involvement in grabbing union office. The speakers at the rally alleged that a committee, elected during the caretaker rule, were holding office at Srimongal. But a group of musclemen with the blessings of the ruling party people captured the office illegally on November 25. Despite repeated attempts it could not be retaken while agitation continued at the different tea gardens. The speakers vowed to go for tougher agitation soon to get back the office. The tea workers later took out a procession in the city and handed over a memo to the divisional commissioner of Sylhet.


No loser on Victory Day!

Many associations and clubs organise and host friendly tournaments to celebrate the Victory Day. Usually these tournaments start a few days ahead of time and conclude on December 16. There is a thin layer of irony in this arrangement. As with all tournaments, only one emerges as the victor, leaving many tournament participants as losers on the Victory Day.

Publicising environment protection!

Nepal holding its cabinet meeting at 17,000 feet was the surprising news, published with photograph in all our dailies on 5 December. First, it was Maldives, now it is Nepal, each out-doing the other, to publicise the desperate need for environment protection and containing global warming!

Combating climate change

The earth is getting warmer day by day and we are going to be in deep trouble. Nowadays the climate change has become a thorny issue across the world. On account of the melting of icebergs in Antarctica zone is that the large part of the earth may be extinct by the surge of water within 50 years unless proper steps are taken. For this, the world leaders have assembled in Copenhagen to convey the message of its grisly affect upon the earth and to be alert regarding it. And it is reported that Bangladesh is now at a vulnerable juncture.

Dr. Noazesh Ahmed

We were deeply shocked at the sudden demise of one of our alumni, the celebrated photography icon, an ardent nature lover Dr. Noazesh Ahmed.

True leader

The people of this country never put so much trust in any person other than the prime minister's father, Bangabandhu Sheikh Malibu Raman.

Of ornamental seats

The matter of using enormous ornamental chairs for leaders has been a shameful culture in our country for years now and so, it was with a sense of relief that we saw our prime minister rejecting this unseemly seating arrangement for a more normal chair at par with other signatories at a public event recently. The leaders probably do not ask for this special /preferential treatment. It is more likely the result of over-enthusiastic arrangements made by obsequious sycophants, there being no dearth of them in our society. We only hope that good sense will prevail and we the public will be the spared the agony of watching leaders sitting on grotesquely designed throne-like seats while others around take a lower seating position.

Pertinent points

One can proceed in one's creativity only on the basis of one's cultural moorings. Science grows indigenously. Understanding requires connecting to a previous experience a reference point. Suppose you are asked to explain the feelings that you develop if you live on the moon. You obviously cannot tell because you simply do not have that experience. Advanced, sophisticated technology has been made a basic need for scientific research today. As a result, the environment of research and the day-to-day environment of the vast majority have been divorced. Einstein, Dalton and many others did not have at their disposal any sophisticated machinery. Their approach was totally deductive.

Souls of the valiant

Do you hear them? They are everywhere around you. Bullet separated souls from bodies, nothing more. Struggle and inspiration is flowing with the same force and power since 1971.

BNP council

Different people are giving different opinions from their own angles on the just concluded BNP Council which the party could hold after 16 years and that too, to meet the requirements of EC.

Whose Eid is it, anyway?

Before the Eid-ul-Azha festival I tried to collect two bus tickets for Paikgacha, Khulna, to observe the holy religious festival with our relatives there. The fare was heavily enhanced, yet I could not collect it then. So, I had to go home to meet my old parents three days after the festival, providing the same exorbitant fare. I asked them the reason behind the high fare. On the plea of paucity of passengers they took away the extra amount of money from me. But I saw the bus full of passengers that day too. While I was coming back to Dhaka on 9 December i.e. 11 days after the Eid, the number of passengers was the same, but yet I had to pay the same cut-throat fare.

Role of EC

Good governance and running of the country depend on the fair play of the political parties, mainly by the political party forming the government and the political party in the opposition. Their fair play shall establish peace and prosperity. People can leave in peace and happiness. So it is very vital to make the political parties practise fair play within some sort of boundary lines and some set conditions. In this respect, the Election Commission is the guardian who can set some rules and disciplines to monitor and control the activities of the political parties for good governance and running of the country to lead the country to peace and prosperity. A political party or any member of the party crossing the boundary lines and breaking the set rules will disqualify as the party/members. It needs some machinery to chop up unwanted/ unwarranted activities of the political parties. Against this backdrop, the provisions of the Representation of the People's order (RPO) was adopted which portrays the people's rights and desires. Tolerance and decency will be developed in the political culture and criminal activities and extortions will be banned. But we observe that the country's politics seems to have regained its old look, intolerance, unlawful activities by ruling party men, low observance of democratic practices within major political parties and parliament boycott by the opposition party.

Hapless people

Perception is an important fact. Who are you? Are you a boy or a girl? People view you as a male or female and this view is very important in our society. By using this view, our society thinks, identifies, categorizes and defines each other. But in our society, there are some people who do not have any identity such as male or female! Apart from male and female, there is another form of human being- the transsexual. In our country, there are also the transsexuals. Here, they are treated like a foreign being, a freak of nature! But if we look at the UDHR (UN Declaration of Human Rights), it is clearly noted that all people are same, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Everyone has the right to life and liberty. It was my good luck that I could meet with the transsexuals for completing a research work. Before starting our research work, we had a strong belief that the transsexuals are very rough in nature. We thought that they are very much aggressive, quick-tempered and cranky. But after meeting, I understand that they are very much decent, well mannered and friendly. Since they have to face misbehaviour from the common people around them in every step of their life, they sometimes make aggressive and rough behave. They are helpless people because they do not have any secure place to go, any honourable work to do. They do not have even the right of the freedom of movement. People always tease them. They think that this type of odd-looking people have no right in society. They are simply a trash for the society. They cannot do any good thing for the society. But this is a wrong notion. Transsexuals are also human beings. They have some fundamental rights. Like others, they have also the right to freedom of thought, freedom of expressing opinion, right to property, right to work etc. If the government of our country gives proper attention about their development, it will be easy to change the miserable life of the transsexuals. We should realize their sorrows and help them make their lives easy.

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UN tackles problems with terror sanctions

The Security Council is expected to approve new measures Thursday aimed at ensuring that UN sanctions target the right people, companies and organisations for links to al-Qaeda and the Taliban including a new ombudsperson.

Poor cannot be sacrificed to climate pact: Indian PM

India cannot accept a global warming treaty that would stall its drive to lift millions out of poverty, Premier Manmohan Singh said as he left for the final phase of UN climate talks in Copenhagen.

Yemeni forces kill 34 Qaeda militants

Yemeni security forces killed at least 34 al-Qaeda militants and captured 17 others in operations backed by air strikes yesterday that foiled imminent suicide attacks, the defence ministry said.

US-Russian arms deal not ready: Russian FM

The US and Russian presidents are unlikely to sign a new arms reduction treaty this week, the Russian foreign minister said yesterday.

Pakistan opposition calls on Zardari to quit

Pakistan's main opposition party yesterday called on President Asif Ali Zardari to resign after a court threw out an amnesty protecting him and senior government figures from corruption charges.

Difficult for Zardari to save his chair: Expert

Following the Pakistan Supreme Court's monumental judgement declaring the National Reconciliation Ordinance (NRO) as 'unconstitutional', corruption cases against President Asif Ali Zardari are set to be re-opened.

UN official proposes to replace 'tainted' Karzai with US-friendly figure

A top UN official in Afghanistan had proposed a plan to replace President Hamid Karzai with a more Washington-friendly figure three months ago - when the widespread fraud in the presidential election was becoming clear.

Pakistan holding up some US visas, says diplomat

Pakistan has held up visas for US diplomats, military service members and others, apparently because of hostility within the country toward the expansion of US operations in Pakistan, a senior US diplomat said Wednesday.

Demand for new states could change India's map

From scores fasting in demand of a new state in India's hilly northeast to a powerful chief minister suggesting her region be split up, the map of the nation is facing an overhaul.

Mexican cartel kingpin killed

Two hundred sailors raided an upscale apartment complex and killed a reputed Mexican drug cartel chief in a two-hour gunbattle, one of the biggest victories yet in President Felipe Calderon's drug war.

'Miracle' as guests survive bombing

A teenage suicide bomber blew himself up at a gathering a northwestern Pakistani town yesterday, but guests escaped unhurt in the attack in a Taliban-troubled district, police said.

Two killed in US drone strike in NW Pakistan

Two militants were killed Thursday in a US missile strike in northwest Pakistan, officials said, as Islamabad faces growing American pressure to dismantle Islamist extremist networks.

Japan won't indict PM

Japanese prosecutors have decided not to indict Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama over the alleged misreporting of millions of dollars in political donations, newspapers reported yesterday.

Noisy protests from Andhra MPs stall Lok Sabha

Noisy protests for and against the division of Andhra Pradesh Thursday forced repeated disruptions of the Lok Sabha that saw 28 business papers tabled in a span of just 15 minutes amid the chaos before the house was adjourned for the day.

Major Mayon eruption likely

A major eruption of a volatile Philippine volcano could be just weeks away, scientists warned Thursday, as thousands of residents faced the prospect of four months in temporary shelters.

Doctors airlift boy with 42 needles stuck in him

A 2-year-old boy with more than 40 sewing needles stuck in him is being airlifted to another hospital in northeastern Brazil because two of the needles are close to his heart, an official said Thursday.

Gene code of common cancers cracked

Two common forms of cancer have been genetically mapped for the first time, British scientists said Wednesday, in a major breakthrough in understanding the diseases.

Arts & Entertainment

Swadhin Bangla Betar Kendra artistes honoured by BSA

The nine-day 'Bijoy Utshab-2009' (Victory Day celebration) is on at Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA). As part of the celebration, BSA held a daylong programme at Bijoy Mancha, BSA on December 16.

A trip down memory lane

Leading cultural organisation Chhayanaut held a reunion at the University Laboratory School and College on Dhaka University campus on December 16. Before Chhayanaut moved to its own building, classes used to be held at the school. The programme also marked Victory Day celebration by the organisation. Present and former students of Chhayanaut gathered at the venue on the day to share fond memories.

Ritwik Kumar Ghatak recalled in Rajshahi

Ritwik Kumar Ghatak, the Bengali master filmmaker was born in Dhaka on November 4, 1925 and stayed in Rajshahi for several years. He and his family moved to Calcutta (now Kolkata) in West Bengal in the 1940s. Partition (1947) had a major impact on Ghatak and is a recurring subject in his works.

Cultural organisations in Pabna observe Victory Day

Cultural organisations of Pabna observed Victory Day with an array of programmes, stressing the values of the Liberation War. On Wednesday morning, local cultural activists paid homage to the martyrs with wreaths at Durjoy Pabna, a war memorial. Pabna Drama Circle, a leading cultural organisation, staged a street show in front of Muktijodhha Shangshad early in the morning. Members of the group staged the play "Ojha".

10th Int’l Children’s Festival of Performing Arts

The 10th International Children's Festival of Performing Arts kickstarted with a colourful inaugural ceremony on the afternoon of December 16. The evening belonged to Finland and Bangladesh which gave the huge audiencemostly schoolchildren a delightful view of their cultures. Youth from countries as diverse as Indonesia, Germany, Iran, Israel, Mandwa, India, Latvia, Romania and Russia watched in rapt attention as the performers went through their paces.

Creating new spaces

Artist Zahura Sultana Hossain's solo art exhibition is currently on at Radius Centre, Bay's Galleria in Gulshan.

Pre-Christmas celebration and prize distribution in Jhenidah

A discussion, cultural show, mock-fight and dance were performed on the occasion of pre-Christmas celebration and prize distribution in Jhenidah. The function was held on Thursday morning.

Children’s recitation and art competition in Magura

To mark the Victory Day, on Wednesday afternoon Magura Shishu Academy organised a poetry recitation contest and an art competition for children. The poetry recitation was held at the auditorium of Shilpakala Academy in Magura town while the art competition was held open air at the premises of the same institution. Some 80 students from different schools took part in the art competition. The theme for the participants was 'Liberation War'.

Nobanno Utshab held

Marking Nobbano Utshab, the students of Jatiya Kabi Kazi Nazrul Islam University (JKKNIU) chalked out daylong elaborate programmes at the university campus recently. The programmes included a colourful procession, choral songs, a short drama, poetry and puthi recitations.


Streamlining the migration sector

LET me start with referring to a recent press report: the crooked labour suppliers in Libya in connivance with their "fellow brothers” in Bangladesh have been cheating and trading on the unskilled Bangladeshi job seekers and those going there on tourist visas. This may have a negative impact on the potential labour export to Libya (The Daily Star, December 12), which has a reported demand for nearly one million migrant workers. The same thing happened in Malaysia, which brought a halt to labour export to that country.

Investing in share market as a corporate financial strategy

I would not recommend it if I were still in the United States. But in Bangladesh, the scenario is different. The stock market here is usually bullish. However, it is a bear market now, which is a healthy sign.

Combat in the court room

WANT to win a lawsuit? Here's a tip. Minimise the use of hand-to-hand combat in the court room. It is considered gauche. This is doubly true if you are a member of the legal profession.

The Daily Star

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