The Daily Star

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Friday, June 22, 2018

News of: Monday, 21st of December, 2009

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SC slams the way killers treated

The Supreme Court in its full judgement of Bangabandhu murder case vehemently criticised the moves by subsequent governments after the assassination of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman for barring trial of the heinous crime and rather promoting the killers to higher or diplomatic posts.

AL amends its constitution

Awami League has amended its constitution again, scrapping Swadhinata Chikitsak Parishad's status as its associated body and modifying a provision on its foreign chapters to make the charter comply with the Representation of the People Order.

Shibir, BCL clash in Bogra college

The authorities closed Government Azizul Haque University College in Bogra for an indefinite period following a clash between Islami Chhatra Shibir and Bangladesh Chhatra League yesterday.

Climate accord best possible

World leaders yesterday insisted that the climate deal clinched in desperation at the UN summit was the best that can be done as they returned home to a lashing from critics.

Diseases on rise for climate change

Not only natural calamities, global warming is imposing precarious effects on human health by increasing various diseases.

Cop 'embarks on' ominous act

A resident of Mohanagar Residential Area in the city's West Rampura on Thursday alleged that the officer-in-charge (OC) of Rampura Police Station took a bribe of Tk 1.70 lakh from him by threatening to implicate him in false cases.

BNP may continue JS boycott

BNP Secretary General Khandaker Delwar Hossain yesterday hinted at continuing his party's boycott of parliament session saying the atmosphere is not congenial to their return to the House.

Trial at Feni adjourned till today

The Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) Special Court-3 in Feni adjourned till today its mutiny trial of 62 soldiers of 19 Rifle Battalion Headquarters under the Comilla Sector for their alleged involvement in the incident.

Policewomen take the wheel

Women behind steering wheels of police cars will soon be a familiar sight in the country as the Bangladesh Police Department is grooming a fleet of policewomen for the job.

Quamrul slates HC judge's remarks on JS

State Minister for Law Quamrul Islam yesterday said lawmakers would go to Supreme Judicial Council to lodge complaint against High Court Judge Nazrul Islam Chowdhury for his recent comments on parliament proceedings.

JMB now has no suicide squad

Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) yesterday claimed that banned Islamist militant outfit Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) now has no suicide squad.

Muggers snatch Tk 11.5 lakh shooting two

Armed muggers snatched Tk 11.5 lakh by shooting two persons on their way to banks in the city's Jatrabari and Mirpur yesterday.

Amar Desh faces $10,000cr damage suit

A $10,000 crore defamation suit was filed yesterday against the daily Amar Desh editor and three others of the daily for publishing 'false report' about prime minister's Energy Adviser Towfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury and son Sajeeb Wazed Joy.

ACC catches bribe-taking Wasa staff

The Anti-Corruption Commission yesterday afternoon caught two Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (Wasa) employees red handed while they were taking bribe from a client at Dakkhin Basabo in the capital.

Mumbai style terror attack in London feared

Scotland Yard has warned about a Mumbai-type terror attack in London targeting business hubs in the international city.

Democrats at US Senate look to close health deal

Outnumbered Republicans are vowing to delay passage of historic health care legislation as long as possible after jubilant Democrats locked in Nebraska Sen Ben Nelson as the 60th and decisive vote.


Flawed Copenhagen deal 'taken note' of

WITH the commotion generated by the just-concluded Copenhagen summit on

Denudation of coastal forests

ONE should feel heartened by the remarks of the shipping minister warning stern action against those indulging in plundering trees in the Sitakund coastal area to set up ship breaking yards. We are, however, disappointed by the denial made by the local MP present at the meeting, terming the matter as media misinformation, further adding that they are the 'victims of media propaganda.'

Cutting through the Gordian knot

BNP has elected a controversial political figure, who is alleged to be corrupt, to the second most powerful position in a major political party, and empowered the chairperson of the party to appoint other office bearers and members of national executive and standing committees ignoring the party charter that provides for election to these posts.

The curtain falls on Copenhagen

IT struck when the finale of the 12-day Congregation attended by 192 members of the UN's Framework Convention on Climate Change was enacted in Danish capital on December 18 with the highest ever stake in the brief history of environmentalism. The leaders of the nations of the world were indeed in Copenhagen to roll back the legacy of hunger, disease, drought, flood, storm and rising seas -- all due mainly to mankind's unwitting impact on the weather system.

Respect for nursing profession

ANNOUNCING a package plan to upgrade the nursing profession, the prime minister expected that the standard of the nursing profession in Bangladesh would be upgraded to international standard, enhancing the nurses' social dignity with proportional pay and status and also creating opportunities of promotion and avenues to get training abroad. This is surely a new dimension and commitment in the health care delivery system of Bangladesh, where the doctor to nurse ratio is 2:1 and patient to nurse proportion is about 8000:1, a very deplorable situation. There are about 20,000 registered nurses in the country, of which 14,686 are in government service and others are working in private hospitals and clinics or have been deputed abroad.


Can Mohammedan end drought?

Will it be Abahani once again to lift the supreme domestic trophy for the fourth time on a trot, or will Mohammedan be able to end their eight-year drought and bring it back to their Motijheel tent? Will it be the current stand-in skipper of national side Shakib Al Hasan to have the last laugh or will it be battle-hardened Khaled Mashud to have the last say?

Emily staves off Arambagh

A late brace from Zahid Hasan Emily powered title contenders Mohammedan to a 2-1 win over a tough Arambagh KS in the Bangladesh League at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.

BOA assures 'em

The Bangladesh Olympic Association (BOA) has assured chef de missions from participating nations that all the venues would be ready much before the start of the 11th South Asian Games.

Big guns absent

The build-up to today's third one-day international between India and Sri Lanka has been dominated by the two-match ban handed down to captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni for India's appallingly slow over-rate in Nagpur.

Aussies do it easily

Australia needed 21 balls on the last day to win the third and final Test and take the Frank Worrell Trophy with a 2-0 victory over West Indies at the WACA in Perth on Sunday. The result was virtually assured as soon as the day broke sunny, with the hosts wanting one wicket and it came when Kemar Roach was ruled caught behind via an umpiring review.

No Bangladesh League matches at BNS

Bangladesh Football Federation suspended today's fixtures of the ongoing Bangladesh League after Bangladesh Olympic Association (BOA) requested to the football's governing body to vacant the venue for renovation work at the Bangabandhu National Stadium.

'Dhoni factor may hurt India'

Sri Lanka captain Kumar Sangakkara believes the absence of his Indian counterpart Mahendra Singh Dhoni for the third ODI in Cuttack on Monday is likely to hurt the home side, as both teams look to take the upper hand in the five-match series.

MU Fool-hammed

Fulham produced the latest twist in a see-saw Premier League title race with a shock 3-0 win over champions Manchester United at Craven Cottage on Saturday.

Real demolish Zaragoza

Real Madrid sent out a message of intent to all-conquering champions Barcelona with a 6-0 demolition of Real Zaragoza on Saturday.

Barca's 6th this year

Barcelona left it late before capping a superb year by clinching the Club World Cup here on Saturday.

Kroos leads Bayer

Teenager Toni Kroos scored twice on Saturday to fire Bayer Leverkusen back to the top of the Bundesliga as the home side came from behind to inflict a 3-2 defeat on Borussia Moenchengladbach.

Bellion fires Bordeaux

A double by former Manchester United striker David Bellion inspired Bordeaux to a 4-1 home win over Lorient on Saturday that stretched their lead at the top of the French first division to nine points.

Media salute Barcelona

Spanish media on Sunday eulogised Barcelona, who claimed their sixth title of the year with Saturday's 2-1 extra time win over Argentina's Estudiantes in the Club World Cup final.

Bad weather halts Serie A

Saturday's Serie A match between Fiorentina and AC Milan was called off for safety reasons due to bad weather.

Valencia duo sidelined

Valencia midfielders Carlos Marchena and Pablo Hernandez will miss Sunday's Spanish league match against Deportivo La Coruna because of injury.

Redknapp in tax trouble

Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp will face proceedings over a tax issue, his solicitors said in a statement issued by the Premier League club on Saturday.

Gayle not surprised

Ricky Ponting will warn his players to tone down their on-field behaviour after Chris Gayle declared he wasn't surprised by Shane Watson's over-the-top celebrations because he "didn't expect anything better" of him. Watson was the third Australian player to be fined by the match referee during the Perth Test, which also featured a two-ODI suspension for Sulieman Benn, and left Australia's players embarrassed by their actions.

England near safety

Jonathan Trott and Kevin Pietersen steered England towards safety with a century partnership on the fifth and final day of the first Test against South Africa at SuperSport Park on Sunday.

Phelps Rock-ed

Britain's Michael Rock achieved a rare victory over swimming legend Michael Phelps but the USA won the 'Duel in the Pool' which ended here on Saturday.

SA name side for 2nd and third Tests

The South African selectors on Sunday named a squad of 14 players for the second and third Tests against England, in Durban from December 26 and Cape Town from January 3.

Mathews to return home

The injury crisis in the Sri Lankan camp has deepened, with the all-rounder Angelo Mathews set to return home after straining his right quadricep muscle during the second ODI in Nagpur on Friday. The Sri Lanka Cricket media manager Brian Thomas has confirmed to Cricinfo that the Wayamba all-rounder Thissara Perera will join the squad in India on Sunday for the three remaining ODIs.

Sponsors off Woods

An embattled Tiger Woods faced a dwindling roster of sponsors Saturday, after Swiss watchmaker Tag Heuer said it was dropping its US advertising campaigns featuring the golf champion.

V-Day soccer

Manikganj district police won the Victory Day football tournament title with a 7-2 goal-fest against Saturia Upazila in the final at the Police Lines ground in here yesterday.

Winter Bridge

Grameenphone Winter Bridge Carnival will start at the Engineering Institute Club, Dhaka on Thursday. The tournament is being sponsored by Grameenphone and organized by Dhaka Metropolis Bridge Association (DMBA). Interested teams, pairs and individuals have been asked to register their entries.

Lou eyeing NZ place

Almost two years after he gave up a New Zealand Cricket contract to join the Indian Cricket League, Lou Vincent has returned to the country and revealed his desire to return to the national side.


Cash registers to sing carols on Christmas

Hoteliers, bakeries and flower shops are set to offer holiday items for Christmas, expecting to transact more than Tk 1 crore surrounding the celebrations.

Launch of mutual funds hits snag

The launch of new mutual funds worth around Tk 3,000 crore now grapples with uncertainty, as the government has directed the market regulator to go slow on allowing such new funds.

High prices drive potato farming

Farmers, encouraged by high potato prices, are showing greater interest in cultivating this item this year.

Biman's NY flight runs into delay

Biman Bangladesh Airlines will not be able to resume its Dhaka-New York flight by the year-end, as it failed to manage aircraft for the route, a parliamentary body said yesterday.

Experts call for collaboration to expand biotechnology

Agriculture experts yesterday called to strengthen collaboration among stakeholders to speed up biotechnological research and development efforts, aiming to ensure food security for Bangladesh's growing population.

Stocks plummet

Dhaka stocks fell heavily yesterday, as mutual funds and bank shares witnessed a sharp decline in prices.

Asia spending again

Laden with colourful bags full of gifts, Andy Xu makes his way through Hong Kong's jam-packed Causeway Bay shopping district apparently unfazed by the past year's global economic crisis.

Bottom line

A research conducted in 2000 by Sarah Anderson and John Cavanagh of Institute of Policy Studies revealed some interesting facts about the strength and power of large corporate houses. Whether we believe it or not, of the 100 largest economies in the world, 51 are businesses; the other 49 are countries.

Software fair starts Feb 10

A five-day software exposition will kick off on February 10 at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre in Dhaka, organisers said in a statement yesterday.

Bumper oil seeds output expected in the north

The farmers and concerned officials are expecting a bumper production of all variety oily crops following various government steps and favourable climatic conditions in the northern region this Rabi season.

United spreads wings to KL today

United Airways (BD) Ltd, a joint venture of non-resident Bangladeshis, is going to introduce its flight on Dhaka-Kuala Lumpur-Dhaka route today with its 155-seated MD 83 aircraft.

Manthan South Asia Award goes to D.Net

D.Net's Computer Learning Programme (CLP) has received the Manthan South Asia Award 2009 in e-Education category, said a statement.

Dubai World may repay loans in full

Top Dubai officials have been in talks with creditors in London on the possible repayment of all the banking debt owed by the troubled subsidiaries of the Dubai World group, a newspaper said on Sunday.

Hyundai Motor announces China truck venture

Hyundai Motor Co said Sunday it has agreed to launch a $400 million truck manufacturing venture in China with a local partner as it seeks further inroads in the world's biggest auto market.

Swedish jeans 'Made in North Korea' go on sale

The "first ever" brand of jeans made in North Korea went on sale in Stockholm on Saturday, the Swedish company behind the communist-made denims said.

Google-Fujitsu join 'smart objects' alliance

Internet powerhouse Google and Japanese electronics giant Fujitsu have joined an alliance to promote the ability of objects from appliances to cars to communicate with one another online.

Ford in better shape after economic storm: CEO

The economic storm that battered the US automotive industry has forced Ford Motor Company into a better position, chief executive Alan Mulally said Friday.

Sheraton gets new GM

Ahmad Bukhari Hamzah has taken the reins of Dhaka Sheraton Hotel general manager, it said in a statement yesterday.

Corporate Briefs

On the close of operation on December 15, the fund declared NAV of Tk 279.66 per unit on the basis of current market price and Tk 220.70 at cost price against face value of Tk 100. The fund's total net assets stood at Tk 27.96 crore on the basis of market price and Tk 22.07 crore on the basis of cost price after considering all assets and liabilities.


Local Market FX
Local inter-bank FX market was fluid today. The USD/BDT rate traded at a similar level compared with the previous working day.


BNP out to implement 'Minus Joy' formula

The ruling Awami League (AL) yesterday alleged that the main opposition BNP has hatched a fresh conspiracy to implement 'Minus Sajeeb Wazed Joy' formula since Tarique Rahman has already been excluded from politics.

200 boatmen set to lose livelihood

A community of nearly 200 traditional boatmen from Basila-Waspur ghat (crossing) is set to lose their livelihood as soon as the Third Buriganga Bridge is opened formally.

Military-backed CG took over to protect BNP

Speakers at a book publication ceremony yesterday said the military-backed caretaker government came to power only to protect the BNP-Jamaat alliance from the public's wrath.

Ensure gender-friendly environment in workplaces

Speakers at a workshop yesterday called for creating a gender-friendly environment in workplaces and ensuring participation of women in decision-making to achieve empowerment of women.

'JS caucus a must to establish rights of indigenous people'

Indigenous leaders demanded a parliamentary caucus comprising the lawmakers from their communities and MPs supporting their causes to establish rights of indigenous people.

Tribute paid to Jawadur, Akhter

Leaders of Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ) and Dhaka Union of Journalists (DUJ) yesterday paid deep respect to the memories to their beloved colleagues Jawadur Rahman and Akhter Ahmed Khan.

Asia Pacific TU leaders' meet begins tomorrow

A two-day seminar and meeting of trade union leaders and representatives in the Asia Pacific region begins in the city tomorrow.

Submit probe report by March 8

A Dhaka court yesterday again directed the additional inspector general of Criminal Investigation Department (CID) to submit by March 8 a probe report in the case of attempt to murder Prof Humayun Azad.

Finance secy asked to appear before JS body meet

A parliamentary committee has asked Finance Secretary Mohammad Tareque to appear before it on January 5 next year and explain the reason of his absence in yesterday's meeting at the Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban.

Tawfiq bins allegations of bribe against Joy, him

Adviser to Prime Minister on Energy, Power and Mineral Resources Dr Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury yesterday brushed aside the allegations brought against him and PM's son Sajeeb Wajed Joy that they were bribed with $5 million by the US-based oil company Chevron.

Problems of expats in UAE discussed

Labour Wing of Bangladesh Embassy in Abu Dhabi observed the International Migrants Day 2009 on the embassy premises on Thursday, says a press release.

30,000 children die from injuries a year

Some 30,000 children die from a number of injuries every year in Bangladesh, according to a study conducted by Bangladesh Health and Injury Survey, says a press release.

'Help organisations working for children with special needs'

KidZcare School organised a workshop for the parents of children with special needs in the city recently.

Meril Splash Festival raffle draw held

The third raffle draw of Meril Splash Freshness Festival, a consumer promotion of Square Toiletries Limited, took place in the city recently, says a press release.

Janakantha editor, two others sued

A Tk 20-crore defamation suit was filed against Janakantha editors for publishing a 'libellous' article in the Bengali newspaper about opposition leader Khaleda Zia's elder son Tarique Rahman and BNP leader Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury.

Raowa executives

Capt (retd) Md Mahbubul Matin and Brig Gen (retd) MH Salahuddin have been elected secretary general and senior vice-chairman of the Retired Armed Forces Officers' Welfare Association (Raowa) respectively for a two-year term, says a press release.


10 outlaws arrested from remote Sirajganj villages

Ten outlaws were arrested in Sirajganj while six others were taken on fresh remand in Kushtia yesterday.

Extortion now the order of the day in 3 SW districts

Extortion by criminal gangs has become the order of the day in three southwestern (SW) districts.

'Killing of young teacher by poisoning' sparks protest

Teachers and students of Patuakhali Government College, also the classmates of Shah Ali, who was allegedly poisoned to death two days ago, brought out a procession and submitted a memo to deputy commissioner (DC) of Patuakhali yesterday demanding proper investigation into the incident and justice.

Road barricade to press for uninterrupted gas supply

Local people yesterday put up barricades on Dhaka-Munshiganj road from Kashipur to Shashongaon under Fatulla Police Station demanding uninterrupted gas supply in the area.

Senseless beating takes the kid's life

A 9-year-old girl was beaten to death allegedly by playmate, his father and elder brother on Saturday in Mujgunni residential area under Khalishpur police station.

Bangladeshi fisherman shot by BSF

A Bangladeshi fisherman was shot by Indian Border Security Force (BSF) on Daikhowa boder under Hatibandha upazila of Lalmonirhat district yesterday.

21 killing grounds in Satkhira still unprotected

Twenty-one killing grounds bearing horrifying memories of 1971 massacres by the Pakistani occupation forces have remained neglected in absence of any government initiative to preserve them.

About a thousand join Gaibandha math fest

A regional 'mathematics festival' was held at Gaibandha Government Boys' High School ground on Saturday, with participation of 965 students from 84 institutions of Gaibandha, Joypurhat, Bogra and Sirajganj districts.

Heroin recovered from bus, clothes from truck

Heroin worth Tk 1.30 crore was recovered from a passenger bus and smuggled clothes worth Tk 1.50 crore was seized from a truck yesterday.

Pabna liquor traders finally to surrender licences

Three liquor traders in Bera upazila of Pabna have decided to surrender their licences to the Narcotics Control Department in the wake of protest by local people against the sale of illegal drugs.

Human chain in Kishoreganj

Guardians and students in Kishoreganj formed a human chain on Saturday demanding double shift in two government schools.

Bijoy Mela in Rajbari

A 10-day long Bijoy Mela was inaugurated here on Saturday on Rajbari Aladipur High School premises.


Always invincible!

We know that Bangladesh experienced foreign rule until we achieved complete freedom. In retrospect we see that Bangladesh was under the Palas(750-1030), the Senas(1030-1202/4) ,and after the Senas the foreign Muslim rule was established. This rule was divided into two periods: Sultanate and Mughal period. During these periods Bangladesh was a province of Delhi, the then capital of the Sultans and the Mughals.

Population control policy

The government is going to draft a policy to introduce 'single child family' at national level by 2015. This is welcome news. It is a belated decision, but better late than never. The population boom in Bangladesh is a serious socio-economic issue. If implemented and accepted by all of us, it will no doubt benefit the country to tackle many problems relating to socio-economic development, health issues and global warming etc.

Save our rivers

Our country is home to a number of rivers. But what is shameful is that our rivers are grabbed by land grabbers and polluted by the industries. Buriganga, Balu, Shitalakkhya and Turag are ecologically critical to this country, but they are in hapless state. Not only these rivers, other rivers are also in poor condition, like our Padma has dried up because of the Farakka Barrage built by India.

Indo-Bangladesh relationship

Bangladesh has been snubbed by India a number of times since independence. The latest rejection of the Bangladesh proposal to hold a JRC meeting to finalise an agreement on the sharing of Teesta river waters is another example of how India deals with Bangladesh. This agreement is pending since 2005. While India failed to comply with the requirements to finalise the Teesta water agreement, Bangladesh already finalised three agreements, namely: (1) Treaties on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters, (2) Transfer of Prisoners and, (3) Bilateral Agreement on Combating International Terrorism.

Impact of changing climate

The change of climate is now a major global concern. The worst of all the problems that affect all the flora and fauna of our environment is the climate change. There are many plants and animals that are vulnerable to climate change. As a result of increasing temperature, they are likely to be extinct. About 18,000 years ago, the sea level was more than 100 meters lower than today. Over the past century, the level has risen by 10-20cm, probably in response to global warming. The mangrove forests will be affected because of increasing salinity during the winter season and high tides during the monsoon.

No reform

Our immediate past caretaker government of Mr Fakhruddin Ahmed took many reform initiatives on different issues, like corruption, but I really felt very sad to think that he had never taken any steps against any transport companies which violate traffic rules and also fail to give comfortable transport service to the public. This is also true that no other government had really cared about public transport to give a standard transport service.

Nobel Prize for Obama

President Obama has reiterated the necessity of war at the time of receiving the Nobel Peace Prize! All over the world the warlord is subverting the peace process, especially in Palestine, yet he has been awarded the prize for peace. What a joke!

DU convocation

The 45th convocation of Dhaka University, the biggest in its history, took place on 12 December, 2009 with more than 9,000 graduates and post graduates getting their degrees in a high emotional state of mind. President Zillur Rahman, Chancellor of Dhaka University, inaugurated the major convocation programme at the middle of the day, at the university's central sports ground, following playing of the national anthem. The university conferred honorary degrees to three distinguished academics Nobel Laureate chemist Prof Yuan T Lee, inventor of the Sono arsenic filter Abul Hussam as well as Indian historian Prof Ranajit Guha. Mr. Lee received his honorary degree physically. Mr. Hussam, an ex- DU student and Mr. Guha could not attend at the ceremony. Amongst the students in receipt of certificates, 4,203 were graduates, 1,328 post graduates and 58 MPhil holders plus 58 PhD holders. The university has assumed this is the largest convocation in terms of number of graduates along with guests. Dhaka University was established in 1921. Its first convocation was held in 1923.

City of opportunity?

Prof. Nazrul Islam, Chairman of the University Grants Commission, has said that Dhaka is the city of opportunity. This opportunity brings misfortune for the city as well as for the city dwellers. In the last two or three decades, the population here has increased four times. At present more than one crore and thirty lakh people live in Dhaka city. To meet the needs of this citizens, the city is losing its capacity. Water crisis, load shedding, traffic jam are now acute.

Destroying forests to make bricks!

Your correspondent's report along with the photograph, published in your pages on 9 December, graphically confirms the saying that "Power corrupts and absolute powers corrupts absolutely"! The report identifies an AL leader of Chakoria upazila in Cox's Bazar and his partner, who have set up a brickfield in prohibited reserve forest area of Uchitar Beel. It seems that the forest officials and the local district administration are unable, or scared, to take any punitive action against them, since they belong to the party in power, and possibly connected with local goons! This is an outrageous example of misuse of power by the Awami League!

Good step

The increase of population has turned to be a thought-provoking issue in this present Bangladesh and it is reckoned to be a `Future Explosion'.

False certificates

A very important report was published in a Bangla daily on 11 December about false certificates of Dhaka university. In the report it was stated that hundreds of people are using such false certificates and working in different government and non-government organisations in the country and abroad.

Dirty city

I was watching the BBC news channel the other morning when the Copenhagen Summit was being reported. It was also reported that Dhaka is one of the dirtiest cities in the world. This credit should go to the incompetence and sheer laziness of the Dhaka City Corporation (DCC). Dhaka has gone below standard just like the great minds of the DCC.

Student politics

Student politics had a golden time in the past, but nowadays student politics has lost its glory.

Help the developing nations

United Nations Secretary-General Ban ki Moon's warning that nature does not negotiate with us is most relevant. To end the stalemate and move forward in Copenhagen, developing countries like India and China should agree on an international verification regime for carbon intensity cuts that they have unilaterally declared.

Nuclear power

As a nuclear engineer, I appreciate Engr. S.A. Mansoor's promotion of Pebble Bed Reactors (PBRs) for heat or power generation (Dec. 13). It is one of the six concepts being investigated for Generation IV rectors (current reactors operating round the world being of the Generation II and III type). Generation IV reactors are not expected to be available for commercial operation before 2030.

BNP and Tarique

How can we support a political party whose chief is Tarique Rahman or going to be the next chairperson? It indicates that the BNP is not a democratic party. Can you cite me a single example of Tarique's contribution for our nation or our country? How come the top leaders of the BNP nod their heads and accept him as their party chief? Thanks to general mass of Bangladesh that they rejected rightly not to choose this party in the last election. People got the lesson, but not the BNP. Still on the wrong track!

Rickshaw issue

Though redundant, this is a long debated issue. The ominous flooding of the city by rickshaws is one glaring example of how both the DCC and the govt can be shamefully indifferent to our rural unemployment problem. Yes, that the rural people are not starving to death is not because of the govt's good planning or programmes but because they have learnt to survive.

Poor decisions

A few days back, I read a report that the present government was going to change the name of "Zia International Airport" to Hazrat Shah Jalal (RA) Airport. This is not quite unexpected news for me since Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina plays the name game when she is in power. The perfect example is "P.G Hospital" which was changed to "Bangubandhu Sheikh Mujib Hospital". Secondly, the name of "Zia Udyan" and "Chandrima Udyan" were changed.

World Cup Cricket venue

The people of Bangladesh are happy to learn that the historic opening ceremony of the 14-Nation World Cup Cricket-2001 will be held at the Bangabandbu National Stadium in Dhaka.

BTRC and business

Rumours are making rounds that BTRC is planning some unfair activities for future licence issuance to "please" the vested quarters.

A question

The Muslims, world over, know that the Battle of Badr was the first and the most glorious battle ever fought in the name of Allah , the Merciful. For the first time the followers of the new faith were put to a serious test. This battle proved to be a milestone in the history of Islam which ushered in the dawn of a new religion, Islam, the youngest of all and the fastest in its following. The victory of Badr was spectacular, 313 Muslims defeated a large army of 950 men.


Zardari vows to fight back

Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari is undeterred by the present turmoil in the country and the wide scale demand for his resignation, and has made it clear that he would fight it out come what may.

Indian Army meddling in Nepali affairs: Maoists

A top Maoist leader yesterday accused the Indian Army of interfering in Nepal's internal matters, further deepening the rift between New Delhi and Nepal's biggest party.

Decision to reopen Swiss cases against Zardari challenged in Pak SC

A petition challenging the verdict to reopen the cases against President Asif Ali Zardari pending in foreign courts, has been filed in the Pakistan Supreme Court.

'Captive Tamil women were sexually abused in Lankan camps'

A British medic, who was held for months in a "concentration camp" along with nearly 300,000 Tamil refugees, has revealed that Sri Lankan military guards sexually abused women prisoners frequently in the camp.

54 civilians killed in Yemeni airstrike

A local Yemeni official said yesterday that 54 civilians, among them 23 children and 17 women, were killed in air strikes against al-Qaeda, which he said were carried out "indiscriminately."

Can new leaders boost BJP?

The main Indian opposition Bharatiya Janata Party has overhauled its top leadership giving the party reigns to relatively younger leaders. But the key question is: can they boost the overall standings of the polls battered party?

Gujarat makes voting in local polls mandatory

Amid protests by Congress, the legislative assembly in western Indian state of Gujarat ruled by BJP has passed a Bill seeking to make voting mandatory in elections to urban civic bodies and village panchayats.

New Afghan Cabinet will be accountable: Karzai

Afghan President Hamid Karzai yesterday rejected criticism that his proposed new Cabinet amounts to business as usual and is unlikely to do much to tackle the country's array of problems.

Maoists target power unit in Orissa

Armed Maoists attacked a hydro power unit at Ballimela in Malkangiri district in Orissa, paralysing energy generation at the plant, police said yesterday.

US Senate approves 2010 military budget

The US Congress on Saturday sent US President Barack Obama a massive annual military spending bill that funds current operations in Afghanistan and pays for the troop withdrawal from Iraq.

Oceans becoming nosier

The world's oceans are becoming noisier thanks to pollution, with potentially harmful effects for whales, dolphins and other marine life, US scientists said in a study published yesterday.

Climate reality: Voluntary efforts not enough

Around the world, countries and capitalism are already working to curb global warming on their own, with or without a global treaty.

Iran admits prisoners were beaten to death

After months of denials, Iran acknowledged Saturday that at least three people detained in the country's postelection turmoil were beaten to death by their jailers.

Top UN scientist urges binding climate pact

The head of the Nobel-winning UN panel of climate scientists has said the outcome of the Copenhagen summit was a start but urged countries to work quickly towards a legally binding pact.

Iranian troops withdrawn from oil well, says Iraq

Iranian troops who for three days controversially occupied a disputed border oil well left the facility during the night but remain on Iraq's soil, Iraqi officials said yesterday.

Cold snap strands thousands of European travellers

Tens of thousands of European travellers were stranded yesterday in rail stations, traffic jams and airports as heavy snow and ice caused massive disruption at the start of the Christmas holiday season.

Iran's dissident Grand Ayatollah Montazeri dies

Top Iranian dissident Grand Ayatollah Hossein Ali Montazeri, a fierce critic of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad who was once tapped to become Iran's undisputed number one, has died, reports said yesterday.

Granny to take parachute plunge

A 100-year-old Brazilian grandmother will experience gravity in a whole new way this Christmas when she takes the plunge out of an airplane to become the world's oldest parachuter, local news site G1 reported Saturday.

Brazilian boy on road to recovery

A Brazilian two-year-old whose former stepfather subjected him to a ritualistic attack pushing 31 needles into the boy's body was recovering from surgery without complications Saturday.

Christmas cheer at ISS

Despite being separated from their families, astronauts heading to the International Space Station next week are excited to be spending Christmas in space, a crew member said Saturday.

Arts & Entertainment

Recalling 1971 triumph . . .

As part of the ongoing Victory Day celebration programmes by Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA), dances, recitations, songs and film screening took place on December 18 (on the fifth day) at its premises. Organised by BSA, the event has been held at the Bjoy Mancha from December 14 and will continue till December 22.

A night of classical music in Narayanganj

A number of seasoned classical vocalists and instrumentalists of the country performed at Narayanganj Club Convention Hall, by the river Shitalakshya on December 17 -- the silence of the night broke with their mellifluous voices and harmonious notes on instruments.

Literature Festival by Khelaghar

The '500th Rajshahi Bibhagio Khelagharh Shahitya Utshab' (divisional literature festival) was recently held in Dinajpur with participation of poets and litterateurs from Dinajpur, Natore, Panchagarh and Naogaon districts.

“Jagadish”: Documentary on the great scientist premiered

“Jagadish”, a documentary on the globally renowned Bengali scientist Sir Jagadish Chandra Bose, was premiered at a function held recently in Faridpur.

Words of Humayun Azad resonate

Proma, a Chittagong based recitors' organisation, staged two productions "Phuler Gondhey Ghum Ashey Na" and "Shobkichhu Noshtoder Odhikarey Jabey" -- based on Professor Humayun Azad's poems, essays and biography -- at Shawkat Osman Auditorium, Central Public Library on December 19.

Victory Day celebrations in Khagrachhari

The 29-Polashpur BDR Battalion held a cultural programme recently at Khedachhara High School premises under Matiranga upazila in Khagrachhari district to mark Victory Day.

“Palakar” goes to Pune

Theatre troupe Palakar is going to participate at the International Theatre Festival to be held in Pune from December 24, says a press release. The festival is being organised by Symbiosis Institute, Pune.

Jackson UK tribute gig in doubt

A Michael Jackson tribute concert in London next year is in doubt after the company organising the show dissolved.

Literature Festival by Khelaghar

Marking the 'Khelaghar Shahitya Utshab', Dhaka Division, a daylong programme was held recently at Udhichi Bhaban auditorium in the town. The organiser of the programme was Brahmaputra Khelaghar Ashor (BKA).


Practicing democracy in political parties

THERE is no denying the fact that democracy is synonymous with good governance. Therefore, a political party needs to cultivate a democratic norm within the party itself. Otherwise, the people cannot expect good governance if the party comes to power.

Population and climate change

THERE are people all around the world -- from the deserts of Sahara where temperature climbs to well over 500C to the permafrost Arctic regions where temperature dips below -500C. Human beings are extremely adaptable animals. But that does not mean that lives in the extremes are comfortable or endurable. The human population had been flourishing on the planet over the past couple of centuries within the comfort zone of 200C to 300/350C, primarily as a result of advances in medical sciences, better health care and enhanced food production. And that is where lies the present problem.

A memorable evening at Shilpakala Academy

MY son sacrificed his life for liberation," said the gentleman sitting a couple of seats away from me at Shilpakala. He did not give his name, but the loss defined his identity with a pride in his son's memory accompanied by the unthinkable pain that never goes away: the pain suffered by a parent when a fundamental rule of nature is broken and a child passes out of their life.

The Daily Star

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