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News of: Thursday, 7th of January, 2010

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River cleanup takes off

Several hundred locals in a colourful boat procession were chanting slogans in support of saving the Buriganga as Shipping Minister Shahjahan Khan pulled the lever of an old crane that scooped a mass of polythene and sludge from the river at Badamtoli yesterday.

Implement all plans sincerely, quickly

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday directed her cabinet colleagues and top bureaucrats to work sincerely for immediate implementation of various development projects.

JS pledge forgotten

The main opposition BNP seems to have failed to play its due role in parliament during the first year of the Awami League-led grand alliance rule because of strategic weakness and inconsiderate boycott of the House.

PM's speech focuses on success, lacks future plan

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's speech to the nation was basically narration of her government's successes, criticism of previous governments and she avoided talking about specific issues and future plans, civil society members said yesterday.

Recipe for disaster

Run-down railway tracks, outdated signalling system, unguarded level crossings, frequent mechanical and human failures contributed to about 997 train accidents last year calling into question the safety measures of Bangladesh Railway.

People to judge govt success

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said in the last one year her government tried with all sincerity to live up to the public trust bestowed upon it in the last general election.

Tender documents snatched, bidders beaten up

Criminals yesterday beat up officials of two companies, who went to bid for a tender at Dhaka Power Distribution Company office at Paribagh, and got away with their bid documents.

BB plans countrywide road show in March

Bangladesh Bank is launching a road show from Teknaf to Tentulia at the end of March to promote financing of small and medium enterprises, soft loans for farmers, use of banking channels for remittance and raise awareness about money laundering.

Performance to decide MPO

The high-powered committee on monthly pay order (MPO) listing has suggested inclusion of non-government educational institutions on the government's payroll based on their student number and pass rate in public examinations.

Gas rationing plan okayed

The energy ministry yesterday approved a proposal of Petrobangla for starting a gas rationing plan to ease the ongoing gas supply crisis across the country, especially in the capital soon.

Govt fails in every sector

Total failure in every sector marks the first year of the Awami League-led grand alliance rule, BNP Secretary General Khandaker Delwar Hossain said yesterday.

Extortionist hurt in Rab shooting

A gunfight between the members of Rapid Action Battalion and a gang of criminals in the city's Naya Paltan area early yesterday left an extortionist wounded.

Dumping, cleaning go together

Despite the fanfare accompanying the opening ceremony of the Buriganga River excavation programme yesterday, the practice of dumping waste into the river continues unabated.

Extended primary level exams in Nov

The education ministry has proposed to introduce terminal examinations of extended primary level, which is class VIII, in November as per a draft education policy.

3 crushed under train wheels in Ctg

Three day-labourers were crushed by a train at Shitalpur under Sitakunda upazila of the district yesterday morning.

Ulfa threatens to attack Indian forces

The outlawed United Liberation Front of Assam (Ulfa) yesterday threatened to attack security forces and vital installations in Assam ahead of India's Republic Day.

Nat'l strategy be drawn up for oil, gas exploration

An appropriate national strategy should be devised for exploration of the country's mineral resources including oil and gas, barrister Abdur Razzaq told the High Court yesterday.

CJ to decide on Khaleda's stay plea

The High Court yesterday sent to the chief justice two separate petitions filed by BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia and her son Tarique Rahman seeking stay of the proceedings against them in Zia Orphanage Trust embezzlement case.

Tigers take on India today

With both teams having lost their first matches against Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and India will look to register their first win when they meet for the first time in the Idea Cup at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur today.

Jyoti Basu's condition deteriorates

CPM leader and former West Bengal Chief Minister Jyoti Basu's health condition deteriorated yesterday morning following which he has been put on a ventilator.

Next hearing on Jan 21

A Chittagong court yesterday fixed January 21 for the next hearing of sensational 10-truck arms haul case.

Gang guns down guard

A teenage gang gunned down an elderly security guard at a building construction site in Mirpur at around 6.45am yesterday.

2 currency forgers held

Members of the Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) yesterday arrested two members of a currency forgery gang at Uttara in the city and seized 53 counterfeit notes of Tk 100 denomination.

25 die in China coal mine fire; 3 trapped

A fire in a coalmine in central China killed at least 25 workers, and search efforts continued for at least three others trapped underground, state media reported yesterday.

Australia downplays India student warning

The Australian government has played down a travel advisory issued by India warning of the risk of violence against Indian students in Melbourne.

Pak foreign policy not pro or anti US: Qureshi

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has clarified that Islamabad's policy is "neither pro-American nor anti-American," it simply is a pro-Pakistan foreign policy.


Opposition's preconditions to joining parliament

THE main opposition seems not to have buried the hatchet, but is raising demand after demand as a precondition for joining the parliamentary sessions. Interestingly, in their latest disclosure on the demands, they made no mention of rearrangement and increasing the number of front row seats for which they started their continuous boycott of Jatiya Sangsad (JS) from its second session in June last year in the first place.

Protecting guest birds

THE Moulvibazar district administration has decided to go beyond just appealing to people to refrain from poaching migratory birds. They have announced that anyone catching a bird poacher will be monetarily rewarded for the service rendered to the guests flying all the way from sub-arctic zones to our water bodies and marshlands. The district administration aims to protect the birds in Hakaluki haor, where they are found aplenty during the winter.

One year on

IT is only natural that a government's one year in office will come under scrutiny, perhaps more vigorously than before because of the two year interregnum that almost put democracy on a permanent hold. And that interregnum was necessitated by the way things developed in the political arena before October 2006.

Regional cooperation in water management

VISION for 2021, the water challenges and regional cooperation Bangladesh Vision for 2021 aims at self-sufficiency in food production by 2012, increase of electricity supply to 7,000 MW in 2013, 8,000 MW by 2015 and 20,000 MW by 2021, annual economic growth of 8% by 2013 and 10% by 2017, and reduction of poverty level from 45% to 15% by 2021.


Toss crucial for Shakib

Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan's first wish will be to hope for the rub of the green when it comes to tossing the coin with India skipper MS Dhoni for today's third one-day match in the Idea Cup tri-nation tournament at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur.

Youths target top four

The Bang-ladesh Under-19 cricket team will leave for New Zealand tonight with a lofty target of finishing amongst the top four in the ICC Under 19 Cricket World Cup 2010 that kicks off on January 15.

Zoran admires local passion

Bangladesh's new football coach Zoran Djordjevic yesterday presented his plans on how he would prepare his new charges of the Bangladesh U-23 team in a short period for the South Asian Games.

Remember the name Rabbi

Fazly Rabbi of Manikganj Government Boys' High school hit a double century in the Standard Chartered Young Tigers Under-16 National School Cricket tournament at the local Shahid Miraj-Tapan Stadium yesterday.

Mahela arrives in Dhaka

Sri Lanka have called up Mahela Jayawardene to boost their injury-hit squad midway through the tri-series in Bangladesh. The team has lost the services of three men on this tour: Tillakaratne Dilshan picked up a groin injury during the first game against Bangladesh, Chamara Silva fractured his thumb during training, and Muthumudalige Pushpakumara injured his shoulder in the game against India. In addition to Jayawardene, Sri Lanka have called up the 20-year old uncapped wicketkeeper Dinesh Chandimal and the opener Mahela Udawatte, 23, who has played nine ODIs.

Arambagh, Feni in tame draw

Hosts Feni Soccer Club held visiting Arambagh to a 1-1 draw in the Citycell Bangladesh League at the Feni Stadium yesterday.

Stunning Aussie win

Australia completed a nerve-shredding 36-run victory over an exasperating Pakistani side to become just the sixth team in Test history to triumph after trailing by 200-plus on the first innings. An obstinate 123-run ninth-wicket partnership between Michael Hussey and Peter Siddle drew Australia back into a contest they appeared to have conceded after a calamitous opening day, and a penetrative final-day bowling display completed one of the great comebacks witnessed on these shores.

Yousuf takes the blame

Pakistan captain Mohammad Yousuf has shouldered the blame for Pakistan's shock 36-run defeat against Australia in Sydney, and has said his dismissal was the turning point of Pakistan's chase on the fourth afternoon.

Eng survive new ball

Andrew Strauss and Alastair Cook survived some hostile bowling from South Africa's new ball bowlers on the fourth day of the third Test at Newlands on Wednesday as England set out on the long quest to preserve their lead in the series.

Ponting ecstatic

All the Australian team talk was right and the doubters were wrong. In the most unbelievable turnaround Ricky Ponting's men up-ended Pakistan on a swinging day to wrap up the series at the SCG and earn smug smiles and wild celebrations.

No charge against England

The International Cricket Council (ICC) will take no action against England players for allegedly interfering with the condition of the ball during the third Test against South Africa at Newlands.

Clarke for Kent

Australia seamer Stuart Clark will play for Kent for the first half of the 2010 English season, the county announced on Wednesday.

ESPN goes 3-D in US

Television entered a new dimension on Tuesday as US sports giant ESPN said it will broadcast some World Cup soccer matches live from South Africa in 3-D and Sony teamed up with Discovery and IMAX to launch a 3-D TV network in the United States.

Stoke edge Fulham

Stoke mastered the elements better than visitors Fulham to climb back into the top half of the Premier League with a 3-2 win at a snow-covered Britannia Stadium here on Tuesday.

Puma's unified African kit

German sportswear giant Puma on Wednesday unveiled a "unified African kit" the continent's teams can use if their national colours clash during the African Nations Cup and World Cup finals.

Pompey in more trouble

Crisis-hit Portsmouth took another step into the unknown Tuesday after failing to pay their players for the third time this season.

England set altitude camp in Austria

Fabio Capello's England squad will travel to Austria for a training camp at altitude prior to the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, the camp's organiser said Tuesday.

Inter stretch lead

Serie A champions Inter Milan started the new year with a 1-0 win over Chievo to stretch their lead over AC Milan, who face Genoa later Wednesday, to 11 points.

Matthaus splits from his fourth wife

Former German international and World Cup-winning skipper Lothar Matthaus has split from fourth wife Liliana and is set to enter divorce proceedings after just a year of marriage, Bunte tabloid reported Tuesday.

'Vieira leaving Inter'

French midfield veteran Patrick Vieira is set to leave Inter Milan within days, amid reports of interest from Manchester City, coach Jose Mourinho said Tuesday.

C'Ron most popular sports star on Facebook

Real Madrid's Portuguese international striker Cristiano Ronaldo is the most popular sports star on Facebook, the sports daily Marca reported on Wednesday.

Berger calls it quits

Sparta Prague's former Czech international midfielder Patrik Berger has announced that he is retiring because of recurrent injuries, his team coach said Wednesday.


A new-look Biman in sight

Biman Bangladesh Airlines is expected to rebrand itself, bringing changes to its livery and logo.

Govt to halve salaries for CEOs of state banks

The government has moved to halve salaries of the chief executive officers (CEOs) of state-run banks to narrow the compensation package gap with other officials.

15pc state-bank branches in the red

About 15 percent of state-owned bank (SOB) branches are counting losses because of inefficiency, a lack of competitiveness and remote locations.

Automation of Dhaka tax zones kicks off

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) yesterday started its automation drive in the capital by launching computerised data entry for Dhaka Tax Zone-8 as part of a move to automate the entire board activities by June.

AB Bank to buy 30pc more stake in Cashlink

AB Bank has got the Bangladesh Bank (BB) approval to buy a further 30 percent share of a payment system solutions provider, Cashlink Bangladesh Ltd (CBL), the bank said yesterday.

Earthquake preparedness body formed

The government has formed a 39-member 'Earthquake Preparedness and Awareness Committee' for taking necessary steps in case of any earthquake disaster in the country.

Dhaka inter-bank offer rate launched

Bangladesh Bank Governor Atiur Rahman formally launched yesterday Dhaka inter-bank offer rate (DIBOR), which will help banks get a benchmark interest rate or reference rate.

UK minister links strong democracy to foreign investment in Bangladesh

A strong democratic system as well as instrumental arrangements could attract more foreign investment in Bangladesh, UK Minister for Communities and Local Government John Denham MP has observed.

Desco declares 25pc cash dividend, 20pc bonus shares

Dhaka Electric Supply Company (Desco) has decided to provide 25 percent cash dividend and 20 percent stock dividend to its shareholders for the 2008-09 fiscal.

Call for tackling recession effects on all fronts

Bangladesh should look for a comprehensive framework to tackle the impact of global recession, which is still unidentified by developed nations, said speakers at a discussion yesterday.

Minister says labour law to be made more worker-friendly

Minister for Expatriates' Welfare and Overseas Employment Khandker Mosharraf Hossain said yesterday the government is planning to modernise the labour law with an aim to make it more worker-friendly.

Bumper mustard production expected

Farmers of Mawla Beel are expecting a bumper mustard production in the 400-bigha waterlogged land this season thanks to favourable weather.

Google, Apple in high-tech war

The once-cuddly relationship between Google Inc and Apple Inc is morphing into a prickly power struggle as the ambitions and ideas of the technology trendsetters increasingly collide.

Asian cars lead US roads in 2009

Asian automakers dethroned Detroit as the biggest sellers in the United States in 2009 after General Motors and Chrysler succumbed to the economic crisis, industry data has shown.

Asian stocks extend gains

Asian shares extended their gains Wednesday amid upbeat sentiment over the global outlook, as an offer from Japan's finance minister to resign on health grounds failed to ruffle investors.

China's electricity use up 6pc in 2009

Electricity consumption in China rose nearly six percent in 2009, the government said Wednesday, as the economic recovery gathered pace and unusually early cold weather struck parts of the country.

Bank of England to keep interest rate at record low

The Bank of England is expected to hold its key interest rate at a record-low 0.50 percent at a meeting on Thursday, analysts said, amid hopes that Britain will soon exit a deep and long-lasting recession.

SandP puts Icelandic debt under negative credit watch

Rating agency Standard and Poor's said Wednesday it had put Icelandic debt under negative credit watch, a day after Iceland's president blocked a bill of compensation for the failure of Icesave bank.

North Korea to close major wholesale market

North Korea has ordered the closure of a major wholesale market in the latest of a series of measures to reassert government control over the faltering economy, a Seoul-based welfare group said Wednesday.


Students happy over getting textbooks timely, thank PM

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday launched web portals titled 'Tatthya Batayan' of all 64 districts of the country.

Ershad wants JP to contest next JS polls alone

Jatiya Party Chairman HM Ershad yesterday called on the leaders and activists of his party to strengthen the party's organisational capacity with a view to contesting the next parliamentary elections alone.

Patronise research instts: President

President Zillur Rahman yesterday underscored the need for patronising the research institutions to facilitate researches and the practise of art and literature.

Fourth Int'l Festival of Docufilms begins

Fourth International Festival of Docufilms on Liberation and Human Rights organised by the Liberation War Museum began in the city yesterday with a slogan 'Documentary for a Better Future'.

Prepare list of dedicated leaders

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia has asked a joint secretary general of the party to prepare a list of the leaders who were active during the emergency period of the immediate past caretaker government regime, but were not considered for the newly formed central executive committee.

Nat'l Primary Education Week begins today

The National Primary Education Week kicks off today with the view to upholding the importance of primary education, says an official handout.

26 cops killed in 2009

A total of 26 police members were killed in different incidents in 2009 and one member was killed in 2008.

Huji man arrested

The Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) claimed to have arrested a member of banned Islamist outfit Harkat-ul Jihad al Islami, Bangladesh (Huji) from Adabor area in the city on Tuesday night.

DCC renames 2 city roads

Dhaka City Corporation (DCC) yesterday renamed two city roads after the name of two freedom fighters recognising their contribution during the Liberation War.

Govt to do everything for peace in S Asia

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said her government would do everything necessary to ensure peace and prosperity for the people in the South Asian region.

95pc youths with disabilities unemployed

Speakers at a discussion yesterday said almost 95 percent of the youths with disabilities are sitting idle without any employment opportunities.

Electronic goods stores fined

A mobile court yesterday fined three stores of electronic goods Tk 1.30 lakh at Nawbabpur Road in the city.

Govt to ensure rule of law

Dhaka University (DU) Vice Chancellor Prof AAMS Arefin Siddique yesterday hoped that the government would ensure rule of law and strengthen democracy through its work in next four years and implement its adopted plans in next four years involving people.

Chehlum of Akhter tomorrow

Chehlum of Akhter Ahmed Khan, minister (Press) at Bangladesh embassy in Washington and former secretary general of Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ), will be held at Bar Library Bhaban near of Dhaka District Judge's court in the city after Juma prayers tomorrow, says a press release.

Students confine teachers to principal's room

Agitating students of Dhaka Nursing College on the Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH) compound yesterday confined their 20 teachers, including the principal, to the latter's room to press home their four-point demand.

Another BDR man dies

A member of Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) died at Jessore Combined Military Hospital early yesterday four days after he reportedly attempted to commit suicide by taking poison at Sainik Lines in Khulna.

Moudud warns of movement

BNP leader Moudud Ahmed yesterday said his party would be forced to take to the streets if the prime minister compromises with India over gas and water issues.


Cold wave, fog menace Irri-Boro seedbeds

Irri-Boro seedbeds in many areas of Chapainawabganj and Naogaon are turning yellowish and withering away due to cold wave and fog, much to the despair of farmers.

3,000 pieces of warm clothes for 56,000 Aila-hit people

Cold-related and water-borne diseases have broken out in Aila-hit Dakope and Koira upazilas of the district, affecting a large number of people especially children and aged persons.

Choppers to help vaccination in remote hill dist

Army helicopters will be used to carry vaccine doses and health workers to 11 inaccessible areas of Bandarban hill district to ensure administering polio vaccines to the indigenous children in the remote inaccessible areas.

UPDF activists confine UNO to office

Indigenous people belonging to United People's Democratic Front (UPDF) kept the Panchhari upazila nirbahi officer (UNO) confined to his office for about an hour following a heated exchange between the UNO and the upazila chairman yesterday.

SI sued on charge of rape at Bogra

A cook at Bogra Sadar Police camp has filed a rape case with Children and Women Repression Prevention Tribunal-1 against a sub-inspector.

Five brick fields in Pabna fined for violating rules

Five brick field owners were fined Tk 1.05 lakh in Pabna on Tuesday for using firewood to burn bricks violating the rules.

CI sheets meant for relief seized

Law enforcers on Tuesday seized 50 pieces of Corrugated Iron (CI) sheets meant for relief from a house at Chandva village in Atghoria upazila and arrested the house owner.

Pvt transport workers obstruct plying of BRTC buses

Passengers of BRTC bus service operating in a number of districts are facing difficulties as private transport workers and motor owners associations are allegedly putting obstacles on different routes.

Tangail hospitals lack doctors, nurses

Treatment of patients is greatly hampered in Tangail as the government hospitals in the district are facing acute shortage of doctors, nurses and other staff for quite a long time.

KMC principal resigns

Khulna Medical College (KMC) Principal KP Sarker has resignd on personal ground.

Pry dropout ups in Barisal

The number of primary dropouts in the district is increasing alarmingly despite several government programmes to check the rate.

Another accused Held in Satkhira

Police arrested another accused in landless people's leader Saifullah Laskar murder case at Thanaghata village in Sadar upazila on Tuesday night.

BNP office ransacked

Kalmakanda upazila BNP office was ransacked allegedly by BCL activists yesterday. Local BNP claimed that over 100 BCL activists of Kalmakanda upazila, equipped with lethal weapons, brought out a procession at the upazila headquarters at noon. The BCL men then attacked the BNP office and damaged its furniture, they added. Contacted, officer-in-charge of Kalmakanda Police Station confirmed the attack.

Notebooks seized

Law enforcers seized 20,000 notebooks and guidebooks from three bookshops in the town on Tuesday. Acting on a tip-off, Rab and police launched a joint drive at around 5:00pm and seized the banned books from Kohinoor Library, Book Centre and Pustak Ghar. No one was arrested.

Decomposed body found

Police recovered a decomposed body from a Chandai village in Atghoria upazila of the district yesterday morning. The deceased was identified as Antar Ali, 30, son of Ansar Ali of the village. Police quoted family sources as saying that Antar went out of his house on December 19 to buy a power tiller and remained missing since then. Fishermen found the decomposed body in Chandai water body early yesterday and informed the police who recovered the body in the morning and sent it to Pabna General Hospital for autopsy.

Krishak Dal leader arrested

Police arrested SM Abdur Rob, president of Krishak Dal district unit, at his house at Itbarai village under Sadar upazila on Monday. Police said Abdur Rob, also a former chairman of Itbaria Union Parishad, was wanted in a number of criminal cases. Police on Tuesday produced Rob in a court that sent him to jail.

Fake fertiliser seized, one arrested

Members of the Rapid Action Battalion arrested one person with 300 sacks of fake fertiliser from chalk Baddinath area in Natore town on Monday night. The arrestee is Jahurul Islam, 30, son of Nurul Islam of Chalk baddinath. A team of Rab-5 with the help of Natore police raided a godown in Chalk Baddinath area at around 9:00pm and arrested Jahurul Islam with 300 sacks of fake MOP fertiliser.

Robbers loot passengers

Robbers looted valuables worth several lakhs of taka from passengers on the road at Bhairabtali Shahji Bazaar in Srimongal upazila of Moulvibazar district early yesterday. Police quoting witnesses said 20 to 25 robbers intercepted vehicles by placing electric poles of Palli Bidyut Samity on the road and looted cash and valuables from the passengers at gunpoint at around 2:00am The gang also damaged windowpanes of a number of vehicles as the drivers refused to open the doors. On information, police rushed to the spot and rescued a car driver who was tied up by the robbers.

Programme on capital market

A daylong awareness programme for the investors about capital market will be held here on January 9. Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) will arrange the programme for the first time at Barisal Club auditorium. ICB Securities Trading Company Limited (ISTCL), a subsidiary of Investment Corporation of Bangladesh as member of DSE, is locally organising the programme with the assistance from other private brokerage in the city.


Suicide blast kills 4 Pak soldiers in Kashmir

A suicide bomber killed four Pakistani soldiers yesterday near the demarcation line with India in Kashmir, the latest in a spike of attacks in the Pakistani-administered zone.

Two US missiles kill 11 militants in Pakistan

Two US drone attacks killed at least 11 militants in Pakistan's tribal belt on the Afghan border yesterday, flattening an extremist Taliban training centre, Pakistani officials said.

US asks Pakistan to extradite Huji chief

The United States has sought from the Pakistani government an early arrest and extradition of Ilyas Kashmiri, the fugitive chief of the pro-Kashmir Jihadi group, Harkat-ul-Jihad al-Islami (Huji), in connection with the assassination of seven CIA agents in Afghanistan's Khost province.

Roadside bomb kills four children in Afghanistan

A suspected roadside bomb killed four children and injured dozens including nine foreign troops yesterday, officials said, as a police officer who defected to the Taliban was captured.

Bomb alert lifted at US embassy in Switzerland

A brief bomb alert at the US embassy in Switzerland has been lifted after a suspicious object found earlier turned out to be harmless, an embassy spokeswoman and Swiss police said yesterday.

Police identify Karachi blast masterminds

Karachi Police Chief Wasim Ahmed has claimed that the culprits responsible for the Asura blast, which killed 42 people in Karachi on December 28, have been identified and will be brought before the public within a week.

Book written by bin Laden's son sheds light on his family

With a book written by one of Osama bin Laden's sons, and with news of a daughter sheltering in the Saudi Embassy in Iran, some of the blanks are being filled in on the life of the 9/11 mastermind's large family, including lurid details of his parenting style.

Pakistan court refuses to acquit Mumbai suspects

A Pakistani anti-terror court yesterday threw out requests to acquit seven suspects accused by rival India of helping to carry out the 2008 Mumbai attacks, a defence lawyer said.

Hubble telescope shows earliest photo of universe

The Hubble Space Telescope has captured the earliest image yet of the universe just 600 million years after the Big Bang, when the universe was just a toddler.

Obama rebukes spy chiefs over intelligence 'screw-up'

An angry President Barack Obama has lectured US spy chiefs on an intelligence "screw-up" that left a US airliner carrying 290 people open to a barely-averted al-Qaeda attack on Christmas Day.

Extra security checks on US airport draw criticismfrom 14 nations

The Obama administration's decision to carry out extra security checks, including full-body pat downs, on people flying into the United States from 14 mostly Muslim countries has provoked criticism from foreign officials.

China's Xinjiang issues new anti-terror rules

Authorities in China's troubled Xinjiang region will step up identity checks and monitor religious activities in a renewed bid to quash terrorism, separatism and extremism, state media said yesterday.

Snow brings chaos to Britain as Europe shivers

Britain's most brutal winter in decades caused chaos for travellers yesterday as snow and ice hit airports and roads, while bitterly cold temperatures cloaked much of Europe.

Suicide attack kills 7 Russian police

A suicide bomber set off a powerful car bomb outside a police headquarters in the restive Russian republic of Dagestan, killing seven policemen and wounding 15, officials said.

S Korea urges N Korea to return to nuke talks

South Korea yesterday urged North Korea to return to nuclear disarmament talks and called on China to step up efforts to bring Pyongyang back to the table.

Blair was "disconnected" from reality in Iraq war expectations: Patey

Sir William Patey, Britain's Ambassador to Iraq from 2005 to 2006, has said that there was a "disconnect" between then Prime Minister Tony Blair's demands and the situation faced by their forces fighting in Basra and the south of the country.

World War II Atomic bomb survivor dies in Japan

Tsutomu Yamaguchi, the only person officially recognized as a survivor of both the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bombings at the end of World War II, has died at age 93.

Arts & Entertainment

Learning the basics from Zainul Abedin

Murtaja Baseer is one of the distinguished painters of our country, who has made a great contribution to Bangladeshi art. From his childhood, he has had a great passion for art. Baseer recently reminisced on his association with his teacher Zainul Abedin, a pioneering figure of the modern art movement, who founded Dhaka Art College in 1948 with some of his comrades.

A “Sonata” of disconnectedness

Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata" is dreamy and draws listeners into themselves. "Sonata", by Mahesh Elkunchwar is all about people drawn into themselves: people with dramatic exteriors but a pain of inner loneliness not far below that gets achingly more intense with every lie they tell the world and also to themselves.

Lifelong devotion to classical music

Bangladesh born Indian classical singer Tushar Dutta recently visited Dhaka. Dutta came to Bangladesh upon an invitation from Chhayanaut, to perform at the recent classical music festival (from December 24-26, 2009) organised by the institution.

Theatre festival in Rajshahi ends

The weeklong theatre festival concluded Tuesday night with renowned theater personalities from Dhaka assembling in the northwestern city of Rajshahi at the staging of Selim Al Deen's play “Dhaboman”.

A year of accomplishments

FM station abc radio (FM 89.2) is turning one today.

Mokammel’s “Swapnobhumi” invited to Mumbai film festival

The new year is set to keep acclaimed Bangladesh filmmaker Tanvir Mokammel a busy man.


Economic diplomacy in a multi-polar world

ECONOMIC diplomacy through dialogue with neighbouring countries, and multi-polar coalitions that may come up in the near future, seem to be the need of the time for our survival and growth. Gone are the days of traditional diplomatic exchange of pleasantries, complimenting the host countries and assuring them of best cooperation, which means nothing and leads nowhere. With the development of digital technology, particularly the Internet, this time-consuming process has become redundant.

Cadet Colleges: more value for money?

WITH keen interest I went through the two pieces on the usefulness (or otherwise) of cadet colleges in the point-counterpoint page of The Daily Star of December 15 and 24, 2009 respectively. Being a product of a cadet college, I have often done some soul searching on two things. First, what exactly was the intent of having such a totally different and apparently costly system of secondary education for a chosen few; and then, whether we have done our part in paying back the nation for the resources it had invested in us. I was never really sure about the answers.

Dhaka traffic: The common sense approach

ROAMING the city's streets in the back seat of one's own chauffeured automobile has been a passion of Dhaka's moneyed classes from the colonial days. Historians argue whether the first motor vehicle in the city was owned by the Nawab family or the British sahibs. But owning a car has been a substantial status symbol in our society for a century now, with memories of dust storms on the city's dirt roads created by those early vehicles passed down through generations.

Star Chittagong

Tk 739cr projects to improve Ctg road network

Chittagong Development Authority (CDA) has taken several projects worth over Tk 739 crore to rid the city of gridlocks and develop road network in the port city in the wake of increasing number of vehicles as well as population.

No standard testing for imported agri items

The imported agri items like food grains, spices and fruits are released from Chittagong port without any standard testing to see if they are fit for human consumption or not.

The Week That Was

CU teachers urged to remove session jam
Chittagong University Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Abu Yusuf urged the teachers to perform their duties with utmost sincerity and integrity to remove the session jam at the university by this year.

The Daily Star

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