The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Thursday, September 18, 2014


News of: Saturday, 27th of February, 2010

Front Page

RMG factories at high fire risk

Absence of regular emergency evacuating drills puts a garment factory in danger whenever a fire breaks out, though lack of fire fighting equipment at the building is always brought to the forefront as main reason behind the fatality.

Poor ventilation created smoke trap

The fire, which killed 21 workers at a Gazipur sweater factory on Thursday night, had spread fast and produced thick black smoke for acrylic yarn stored inside.

Ex-RCC councillor, Shibir leader held

Rab yesterday arrested former RCC ward councillor and Jamaat leader Mohammad Gias Uddin and Rajshahi University Habibur Rahman Hall Shibir unit president Reazul Islam in cases filed in connection with the violence and murder on RU campus on February 9.

Health services in bad shape

Public health services across the country are being severely hampered by a staggering shortage of health professionals.

Longing for lasting peace

Over two thousand adivasis were still hiding in deep forests in Baghaichhari yesterday, although a peace process had begun in the ethnic violence torn hill districts of Khagrachhari and Rangamati through formation of peace committees, and bringing out of peace marches.

Candlelight remembrance of victims

Several hundred people create a milieu of adoration holding lit candles in their hands and chanting in a homage to mourn the sad demise of 74 people in the BDR mutiny last year at Rabindra Sarobar near Dhanmondi Lake in the capital.

BNP wants SSF for Khaleda

Main opposition BNP has demanded Special Security Force (SSF) protection for its Chairperson Khaleda Zia, who will lead a massive anti-government campaign across the country.

City dwellers suffer from stinky supply water

The residents of Azampur, Narinda, Gopibagh, Tikatuli, KM Das Lane, Rampura, Moghbazar, Karwan Bazar, Bashabo, Malibagh and Shantinagar in the city have been getting dirty and smelly supply water for last four months.

AL starts district tours next week

Leaders of the ruling Awami League will go on a countrywide tour within a week with a view to strengthening its organisational activities at grassroots level.

Major RMG Fires Since '90

62 killed at KTS Garments, Chittagong 2006

3 probe bodies formed

Three separate probe committees were formed to investigate the fire incident at Garib & Garib Sweater Factory in Bhogra, Gazipur that killed 21 workers including 15 women early yesterday.

Miladunnabi today

The holy Eid-e-Miladunnabi, marking the birth and death anniversary of Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (PBUH), will be observed across the country today with due religious fervour and solemnity.

A few BCL men tarnishing govt's image

LGRD and Cooperatives Minister Syed Ashraful Islam yesterday blamed a few Bangladesh Chhatra League activists and leaders for tarnishing the government's image.

Launch of MRP scheme to delay by 3-4 months

The introduction of machine-readable passport (MRP) project will take three to four months more because of the procedural delay, say sources at the home ministry and the Directorate of Immigration and Passport yesterday.

Rab, DB men held for extortion

Rangpur Kotwali police arrested one Rapid Action Battalion and one Detective Branch personnel on charge of extorting Tk 1 lakh from an Indian national on Thursday.

Tigers take on England tomorrow

Bangladesh will take on visiting England in the first one-dayer at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium tomorrow.

Jamaat's rejoinder, our reply

In a statement against our report headlined "Shibir embroiled itself in conflicts" published on February 25, Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami has said the report was false and confusing.

Cops identify eight culprits

Police yesterday identified eight people as “prime culprits” while 66 detainees of 76 suspects were sent to jail for their suspected roles in Khagrachhari town violence.

DCC elections in May, says CEC

The long overdue election to the Dhaka City Corporation will be held in the last week of May, Chief Election Commissioner ATM Shamsul Huda said yesterday.

Fish trader killed in bomb attack

Unidentified criminals killed a fish trader by hurling bombs on him at Alka village under Fultola upazila in the district last night.

India hikes defence budget, oil prices

The Indian budget 2010-11, presented in parliament yesterday, hiked defence expenditure by four percent, raised taxable income limit but pushed up prices of petrol and diesel by increasing excise duty.

Thai court seizes Thaksin's fortune

Thailand's top court said yesterday it would confiscate frozen assets worth 46 billion baht (1.4 billion dollars) from deposed premier Thaksin Shinawatra, more than half his fortune.

17 killed in Kabul suicide bombing

Insurgents struck in the heart of the Afghan capital yesterday with suicide attackers and a car bomb, targeting hotels used by foreigners and killing at least 17 people and wounding dozens, police said.

BSF kills 1

A Bangladeshi cattle trader was shot dead by Indian Border Security Force (BSF) on Baghadanga frontier in Moheshpur upazila of Jhenidah early yesterday.

Tremor jolts Rangpur

A moderate tremor measuring 5.4 on the Richter Scale jolted different areas of Rangpur yesterday morning.

Myanmar rejects Suu Kyi's appeal for release

The highest court in military-ruled Myanmar dismissed opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi's latest bid for freedom yesterday, turning down an appeal to end 14 years of house arrest, her lawyer said.

Scientist eyes 39-day voyage to Mars

A journey from Earth to Mars could in the future take just 39 days -- cutting current travel time nearly six times -- according to a rocket scientist who has the ear of the US space agency.

Editorial

Gazipur factory tragedy

THE blaze at Garib & Garib sweater factory near Gazipur on Thursday night, supposedly caused by electric short-circuit, that didn't spread beyond the confines of the first floor proved lethal nonetheless in its consequences. That is where the tragedy becomes all the more poignant. As though that was not enough, topped off as it was by a supreme irony that it was so very avoidable. As panicked workers in their desperate bid to escape flames rushed to the upper floors thickly circulating smoke choked up 21 of them to death. Such a large number dying from smoke inhalation, and not from burn injuries brings into sharp focus the dismal state of preparedness against fire-related accidents in a factory stacked with inflammable materials.

Streamline ship breaking industry

THE ship breaking sector is running in a free-for-all style with no legal framework in place to make the parties concerned accountable to any authority. Allegations are often heard of anomaly and corruption right from procurement of vessels from foreign buyers to getting hazardous ships cleared for entry into our territorial waters. One wonders how toxic vessels could get past the port into the yards when there is a ban on import of such vessels posing risks to environment and human and animal health. Questions keep surfacing as to why no pro-environment measures are in place at the ship breaking yards and why the condition of obtaining pre-shipment inspection certificate from a qualified foreign inspection company has been waived. Although environment officials are said to be examining ships, would it not have been more effective a safeguard against hazardous vessels if pre-shipment obligations were complied with by the exporters?

Pro-poor agenda and enforcement deviation

PROFESSED and published declarations to improve the lot of the poor people, particularly in developing societies, are an integral part of the political-economic programme. Some international organizations have pronounced pro-poor agenda that aim at socio-economic empowerment of the downtrodden, particularly the women and children of distressed localities. A significant factor in such scheme of things is the behaviour and performance of police, now considered an important institutional link in development process.

Confusion of ambitions over Afghanistan

THERE have been different interpretations about the recently concluded London Conference on Afghanistan. Some have described it as having been hastily conceived with the principal intention of being a political face-saver for two unpopular leaders, Britain's Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Afghanistan's President Hamid Karzai. Others have claimed that it united an important section of the international community pertaining to their further commitment to Afghanistan's future. A litmus test in this regard has been the strategic approach to the initiation of the latest ISAF armed 'Mashtraq' engagement in the Helmand province in the south of Afghanistan.

Sports

Tigers look to spin trap

Can Shakib Al Hasan's men prove, while launching their campaign against England tomorrow, that they are the better team than the one that played at home more than six years back?

Visitors' school sojourn

Only in their wildest dreams would the children from the Sher-e-Bangla Government Primary School have thought of the events that transpired yesterday afternoon.

Board, selectors in spotlight

Serious questions have been raised regarding selection procedures after the board allegedly interfered and later overruled the team list of the selection committee while choosing the Bangladesh side for the ODI series at home against England.

Beximco bails out BCB

Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) has finally managed to find a sponsor for the Bangladesh-England series as Beximco came forward to save the country's most affluent sports federation from an embarrassment.

India rest Sachin

India have made the challenge of accomplishing their first clean sweep against South Africa much harder by resting regular openers Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag. Their absence means India will line up at the Sardar Patel Stadium at Motera on Saturday without seven of their first-choice XI.

Aus seal opening match

It was a different country but the same result for Australia as they breezed to a six-wicket win over an out-classed New Zealand in the first Twenty20 in Wellington. After an unbeaten home summer the visitors started their tour with another convincing display built on very fast bowling and powerful opening batting.

Beach football gets underway

Beach football got underway in Cox's Bazar yesterday with former star booters taking part in the two-day meet.

All eyes on Terry, Bridge

Chelsea captain John Terry faces an uncomfortable reunion with Manchester City's Wayne Bridge on Saturday as the Blues bid to extend their lead at the top of the Premier League.

Real starting to click

The Spanish league's top-scorers Real Madrid hope for more goals at Tenerife on Saturday as they bid to close the two-point gap on leaders and defending champions Barcelona who host Malaga on the same day.

Bayern's Hamburg test

Bayern Munich face a tough test to keep up with Bayer Leverkusen at the top of the German Bundesliga this weekend as they take on fourth-placed Hamburg at home in what increasingly looks a two-horse race.

Liverpool, Juve through

Liverpool survived a big scare against Romanian underdogs Unirea Urziceni on Thursday night before securing a 3-1 victory that takes them into the Europa League round of 16.

Defensive crisis hits Inter

Inter Milan boss Jose Mourinho will need to employ his greatest powers of tactical and motivational astuteness if his club are to maintain their four-point lead at the top of Serie A this weekend.

Spain name strong team

Spain has announced a strong line-up for their friendly international against France at the Stade de France here on Wednesday.

Cech set for month on sidelines

Chelsea on Thursday said goalkeeper Petr Cech would be out of action for "three to four weeks" after suffering a calf injury during Wednesday's 2-1 Champions League loss away to Italy's Inter Milan.

Pompey face drop

Portsmouth on Friday became the first Premier League club to enter administration in a move designed to protect the heavily-indebted from going out of business altogether.

Aussies optimistic on security issue

The Australian Cricketers' Association remains hopeful that its IPL security requirements can be met despite Lalit Modi's blunt criticism of players' concerns this week. The ACA chief executive, Paul Marsh, said there were positive signs that the IPL's security firm was taking seriously the list of safety issues that worried players after an independent report found that a terrorist threat against the league was credible.

Youzhny battles into final

Mikhail Youzhny, who had to come back from the dead to survive his opening match, made his second final in succession when he reached the showdown of the Dubai Open.

Lee, Bracken in Twenty20 fray

Brett Lee and Nathan Bracken remain in Australia's plans despite long-term injuries after they were named in the preliminary 30-man squad for the World Twenty20 in the Caribbean. Lee retired from Tests this week because his body can't cope with the workload, but he wants to return to national action in the limited-overs formats.

Zimbabwe eye Windies scalp

Zimbabwe wicketkeeper and batsman Tatenda Taibu believes the visitors can topple West Indies in their forthcoming limited-overs series starting Sunday.

Masuda, Eva share lead

Masuda Begum and Nazrana Khan Eva with five points each are now joint top in the preliminary round of the 31st National Women Chess Championship at the close of the sixth round at the Bangladesh Chess Federation hall room yesterday.

Baki, Chandan finish eighth

Bangladesh pair Abdullah Hel Baki and Toufique Shahriar Chandan finished eighth in the men's 50m rifle prone pair event of the eighth Common-wealth Shooting Champion-ship at the Dr. Karni Singh Shooting Range in New Delhi, India yesterday.

Metropolitan

Japan keen to help make public buildings earthquake resistant

The Japanese government will actively consider providing financial support to Bangladesh for retrofitting its all public buildings with seismic resistance, as the country is under immense thereat of devastating tremor.

MM College girl meets tragic end in road crash

A tragic road accident took the life of Rikta Khatun, a student of Jessore MM College, shattering the sweet dreams of her parents yesterday.

External force out to foil trial of war criminals

Workers' Party of Bangladesh President Rashed Khan Menon yesterday said an external force, coupled with the country's anti-liberation forces, is engaged in hatching a conspiracy to foil the trial of war criminals.

Govt mulls mobile IT lab on boats

Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid yesterday said the government would consider the prospect of mobile computer laboratory on boats to introduce information and communication technology to the rural students.

C'nawabganj Bar Assoc executives

Advocate Shamsul Hoque and Advocate Mosaddeque Hossain Kajol were elected president and secretary respectively in the annual election to Chapainawabganj Bar Association.

One more youth dies after taking spurious liquor

One more youth died yesterday after taking spurious liquor at Shahzadpur upazila in Sirajganj on Thursday night.

Compensation demanded

Different political parties and labour rights organisations yesterday expressed grave concern over the death of 21 garment workers in a fire at Garib and Garib Sweater Ltd at Gazipur on Thursday.

Wife commits suicide in C'nawabganj

A housewife committed suicide by hanging herself in her room at Nashipur village under Sadar upazila here on Thursday night.

'Bring CHT attackers to book'

Speakers at a protest rally yesterday demanded the culprits responsible for the killing of the indigenous people and attack on their properties be brought to book.

Indigenous children lack access to education

Most of the indigenous children do not have access to education, as the government is yet to introduce primary education in their mother tongues.

Process underway to ferry Hajj pilgrims by sea route from Oct

Process is underway to transport Hajj pilgrims from Chittagong by sea route at an affordable cost from October 1, Shipping Minister Shahjahan Khan said yesterday.

EC set to scrutinise 590 applications

The Election Commission has received a total of 590 applications from different election observer groups to get registered with it for monitoring elections in Bangladesh in next five years.

Fish trader sues 13 kidnappers

A fish trader in Bagerhat on Thursday filed a case against 13 pirates on charges of kidnapping his employee and demanding extortion.

A fun-filled day for garment workers

A daylong workers' fair was organised in the port city of Chittagong yesterday to let ready-made garment (RMG) workers have a brief respite from the regular workplace treadmill and get a mental boost.

HC issues rule on govt

The High Court on Thursday issued a rule upon the government to explain within two weeks why its decision to raise the rates of court fees in the cases of the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court (SC) should not be declared illegal.

Congressman lauds democratic progress of Bangladesh

US Congressman Chris Van Hollen has lauded the restoration of democracy in Bangladesh, saying that its present progress is very encouraging.

Father shot dead by son

An elderly person was shot dead allegedly by his son at his residence at west Banikakhamar in Khulna city yesterday afternoon.

Work unitedly to resolve land issues of indigenous people

State Minister for Land Advocate Md Mostafizur Rahman Fizar at a workshop yesterday called on the government and non-government organisations to work together to protect the land of indigenous people allegedly grabbed by Bangalee settlers.

CPB, Workers Party faction merge

The Communist Party of Bangladesh and the Workers Party of Bangladesh (reconstituted) led by Haider Akbar Khan Rano have merged into one party.

'Business Journalism' launched

Commerce Minister Faruk Khan yesterday called on the business as well as economic journalists to keep clear knowledge of business journalism and remain alert to sift through mistakes.

Two killed as bus rams rickshaws

A rickshawpuller and his passenger were killed and another rickshaw passenger and a motorbike rider injured when a bus hit the vehicles after losing his control over the steering in the city's Jatrabari area yesterday.

International

Greater trust needed for composite dialogue

Describing the foreign secretary-level talks as "an encouraging step," External Affairs Minister SM Krishna yesterday told parliament that the future of bilateral dialogue with Pakistan will depend on Islamabad's response to India's "core concerns on terrorism" which remains undiluted.

India, Pakistan break the ice, but chill remains

India and Pakistan's first official talks since the 2008 Mumbai attacks moved relations out of the diplomatic deep freeze, but left both sides at loggerheads on how to take the dialogue forward.

Don't blame us for water woes, India tells Pakistan

Rejecting "negative propaganda" over the Indus waters row, India has made it clear that Pakistan's water woes arise from its internal domestic problems and called for adherence to the 1960 Indus Water Treaty, informed sources say.Pakistan raised the issue of the alleged denial of Indus waters to it during the foreign secretary-level talks with India Thursday. But the Indian side stressed that the interests of the two countries were best served by sticking to the letter and spirit of the water treaty.

Militants blow up 16 Pak schools in Feb

Taliban-linked militants have blown up a school in northwest Pakistan, bringing to 16 the number of such attacks this month, officials said yesterday.

India to push for 33pc women in parliament

India's government plans to legislate to reserve one third of seats in parliament for women, a spokesman said yesterday.

24 dead in stampede at Mali mosque

A stampede at a famed mosque in Mali's northwestern desert city of Timbuktu crushed at least 24 people to death and left many more injured, officials and witnesses said yesterday.

'80pc Pak lawmakers have more than one wife'

Pakistan Minister of State for Ports and Shipping Nabil Gabol has claimed that 80 percent of National Assembly (NA) members have more than one wife.

Turkish PM warns army as coup probe widens

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned the army yesterday that no one is above the law as a probe into an alleged 2003 coup plan to oust the government widened with the detention of 18 more soldiers, media reports said.

Gaddafi call for Jihad against Switzerland

Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi has declared a Jihad against Switzerland in a worsening diplomatic row between the two countries.

US puts Brazil under spotlight amid push for Iran sanctions

The United States put Brazil under the spotlight Thursday as it tries to build support within the UN Security Council for tougher sanctions against Iran over its nuclear ambitions.

'Mammoth iceberg may alter ocean circulation'

An iceberg the size of Luxembourg knocked loose from the Antarctic continent earlier this month could disrupt the ocean currents driving weather patterns around the globe, researchers said Thursday.

Danish paper apologises to Muslims in cartoon row

Danish daily Politiken yesterday apologised to Muslims for possibly offending them by reproducing cartoons of Prophet Hazrat Mohammed (SM) in 2008, but said it did not regret publishing the drawings.

Arts & Entertainment

Bangladesh gets its own Fine Art Conservation Laboratory

In a bid to preserve artworks, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA), with financial support from the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD), has opened a Fine Art Conservation Laboratory at National Art Gallery of BSA. The laboratory was inaugurated on February 25.

Ekushey Book Fair ends tomorrow

The month-long Amar Ekushey Book Fair at Bangla Academy premises ends tomorrow. Apart from books, the fair also features cultural programmes and discussion everyday. Noted personalities present keynote papers on different topics related to language and literature.

Ayub Bachchu sets tunes to rhymes

"No rock music for you" -- many kids are used to hearing this. Now rocker Ayub Bachchu is out to change that.

Breathing new life into Tagore songs

Noted Tagore singer Rezwana Chowdhury Bonna's latest solo album "Swaponocharini" was launched on February 25 at the Bengal Gallery of Fine Arts. The album has been produced under the banner of Bengal Music Company Ltd, and features ten songs. Finance Minister AMA Muhith unveiled the new album cover as the chief guest. A live performance by the singer was the highlight of the event.

Painting competition for disadvantaged children

A painting competition for disadvantaged children was organised by Municipality Community Development Committee at Ishwardi on February 24. Over 100 children of eight satellite schools of Ishwardi municipality participated in the event. This exceptional competition was held to mark International Mother Language Day to generate awareness about the Language Movement among the disadvantaged and marginalised children.

Burton takes Alice down the rabbit hole

The visionary filmmaker behind "Edward Scissorhands" and "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" has taken on the ultimate fantasy challenge -- turning Lewis Carroll's "Alice in Wonderland" into a 3-D spectacle that makes the familiar seem new again. Mia Wasikowska plays an older Alice, who once again falls into the rabbit hole and reunites with the bizarre creatures she met as a child.

OP-ED

Guide for all of creation

ON the 12th of Rabiul Awal in Amul Fil, or the Year of Elephant (570 Anno Domini), the benighted world was blessed. Ahmad Mujtaba Muhammad Mustafa (peace be upon him) was born as a Guide for all of creation. "The advent of this great teacher, whose life from the moment of his Ministry is a verifiable record," says Syed Ameer Ali in The Spirit of Islam, "was not a mere accident, an unconnected episode in the history of the world. The same causes, the same evils, the same earnest demand for an 'assured trust' in an all-pervading Power, which led to the appearance on the shores of Galilee, in the reign of Augustus Caesar, of a Prophet, operated with greater force in the sixth and the seventh centuries."

The perfect man

IT was the Andalusian sufi sage Hazrat Ibnul Arabi (1165-1240 AD) who coined the phrase Insane Kamil -- the perfect man, and elaborated on it. In his Fusus- l- Hikam, the sufi master says that when Allah willed His attributes to be displayed, he created the perfect man, through whom His consciousness (sirr) is manifested to Himself." More generally, insane kamil is defined by the famous scholar Professor Nicholson in the following words: "We may describe the perfect man as a man who has fully realised his essential oneness with the Divine Being in whose likeness he is made (Studies in Islamic Mysticism)."

Death on the road: How long do we turn a blind eye?

HAMIM, a five-year old Kindergarten student of Willes Little Flower School was crushed under the wheels of a bus in front of the school in the city on February 3 morning as he, escorted by her mother, was crossing the road. The tragic death of Hamim sent shock waves across the country. Hamim's mother who was also hurt in the accident might be at fault for not using the nearby foot-overbridge but the recklessness and haughty attitude of the driver overshadowed all other lapses.

Environment

Telling the truth

OF late, the issue of climate change has come to the forefront of discussion and attention amongst government, business and non-government quarters. Interest in this issue was heightened even further by the Copenhagen Conference on Climate Change held in December 2009.

Is offshore Sangu a failed gas field?

In 1996, Cairn Energy, a British oil company, discovered Sangu gas field in the Bay of Bengal, and started production in 1998. With offshore gas reaching the land for the first time, people began to hope that it would take the country out of the energy crisis and bring economic prosperity, like in so many other countries that have successfully tapped their respective offshore oil and gas riches. After all, the Bay of Bengal is a large sea and its true oil and gas potential is not known.

Reducing disaster risk at village level

Bangladesh's unique geo-climatic conditions make it traditionally vulnerable to natural disasters. Since 1970, at least 10 major natural disasters and countless local emergencies have struck the country.

Literature

Shakespeare offerings in Bangla

Mohit Ul Alam has accomplished a splendid job for those who want to read Shakespeare's great tragedies in Bangla. He completed with virtuosity his arduous but praiseworthy task by presenting us with the Bangla rendition of Shakespeare's great plays in one edition: Hamlet, Othello, King Lear and Macbeth. Alam's translation is innovative as well as new. This is because he is candid and honest about his abilities. Rabindranath Tagore was intelligent enough when he abandoned his attempt to translate Macbeth in the middle. Shakespeare is so great that he is sometimes untranslatable because of his divine language, astonishingly varied imagery in poetry and infinite variety of vocabulary. Alam rightly presumes it to be so.

The iconoclast in Ahmed Sharif

DR. Ahmed Sharif, the doyen of Bangladesh's Marxist intellectualism, was born on February 13, 1921 and died on February 24, 1999 on his way to hospital. He had had a massive heart attack. The nation remembers him with pride for his wisdom, courage and friendliness. He was a non-conformist who believed in free thought.

Commonwealth Writers' Prize nominees shortlisted

Internationally recognized for propelling authors into the literary spotlight, the shortlist for the regional winners from South Asia and Europe has been unveiled in the race to win the influential 2010 Commonwealth Writers' Prize, says a press release of the Commonwealth Foundation. Offering an exceptional opportunity for new writers to demonstrate their talent and for authors already on the literary scene to strengthen their reputation writers across the region - are in pole position to compete with the best authors from Africa, Caribbean and Canada and South East Asia and the Pacific to win the coveted prizes of the Commonwealth's Best Book and Best First Book.

Eurasian

I was born nearly bald with a few thin locks
like strings of black ink, and eyes
a shadowy chestnut, but an Indo-European
adored for being the lone ivory-toned
baby in a family of wheat-tinged Bangalis.

Star Health

Donate blood, save lives

Everyday, thousands of people undergoing major surgeries need blood transfusion. Many people suffering from various conditions like haemophilia (genetic disease that impair the body's ability to control blood clotting), dengue, severe anaemia, blood cancer, thalaessemia need blood transfusion.

Move together to promote mental health

Although mental health is crucial to the overall well-being of individuals, societies and the country, it is largely neglected and often overlooked in Bangladesh. World Health Organisation (WHO) has given utmost importance to promote mental health services and has been campaigning for the full incorporation of mental health in public health. But it is matter of great regret that many people including some of health professionals are very reluctant to give mental health a priority.

Ways to boost your memory

Often, we face embarrassing situations when we cannot recall names of people very known to us or forget the date of birthday of our beloved one. Then we started to blame our poor memory. Although everyone’s capacity to memories things is not the same but we can boost our existing memory by staying mentally active including physical activity in your daily routine. Here are some ways you can try to improve your memory:

Antidepressants of mother may delay baby's first steps

When pregnant women take antidepressants, it sometimes causes their babies to hit developmental milestones late, Danish researchers reported recently.

DUCECP extends eye care services for the poor

Dhaka Urban Comprehensive Eye Care Project (DUCECP) has incorporated new features in its ongoing five year project to bring more people under its comprehensive eye care services. The project’s focus is to provide treatment care at minimum to free of cost more on hard to reach poor and extreme poor people living in Dhaka city.

Test allows men to check their sperm-count at home

Home fertility tests are not just for women anymore. A new device that looks a lot like those home ovulation and home pregnancy tests but checks sperm count will soon be available in Europe, and is undergoing Food and Drug Administration (FDA) review for marketing in the US.

Strategic Issues

BDR mutiny: One year on

IT is one year of one of the blackest events of our history. Time is really the best healer. But on the other side, many contentious spots remain vivid. Rumors and suspicions continue to dominate public discourse and spreading hatred and pointing finger against each other sees no end. Many blogs, face book groups, and websites have joined to fuel fire to the propaganda war that the killing was politically linked.

Afghan campaign will be tough: Petraeus

WITH US forces entering the second week of a 12 to 18-month campaign in Afghanistan, the general in charge of US forces in the region acknowledged yesterday that the way ahead will be tough.

Iran launches first domestically made destroyer

Iran's navy launched its first domestically made destroyer in the Persian Gulf on February 19 in a ceremony attended by the supreme leader and the commander-in-chief Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the media reported.

UAE military chief visits S. Korea

Lt. Gen. Hamad Mohammed Thani Al Rumaithi, chief of staff of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) armed forces, arrived in Seoul on February 22 for a four-day visit, the Ministry of National Defence said.

Evolving a strategic matrix

IN the backdrop of an increasingly assertive China and an uncertain Pakistan, India has embarked on a major strategic offensive which includes taking American allies on board, cooperating with countries that are apprehensive of China and, last but not least, using its more than average economic growth to entice export led economies of Asia. If one analyses state visits to India in the last six months, it becomes clear that though climate change and WTO negotiations have been the issues discussed with trans-Atlantic countries, however, economic resilience has proved that India rather than being a 'swing state' is very much on the path of becoming the 'second state' in Asia. The strategic community in India has witnessed visits by the Japanese Prime Minister, German President, Canadian Prime Minister, Australian Prime Minister, South Korean President, Vietnamese Defence Minister and Malaysian Prime Minister in a period of three months. This shows India's elevation as a relevant regional power. India has initiated a comparatively quick defence procurement process and defence budget allocation has also risen dramatically in the last five years, despite the fact that each year thousands of crores are left unutilized.

The human element

DURING the Cold War, the security discourse centred on East-West rivalry, a global struggle for dominance between the USA and the Soviet Union. In 1946, George Kennan, then US ambassador in Moscow, argued that the Soviet power was inherently expansionist and would have to be contained. That was the beginning of the “Policy of Containment” that marked the US security policy throughout the Cod War. Security between the two sides was ensured by what was diabolically called “Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD). It was assumed that because none of the adversaries would be 'mad' enough to seek self-destruction, they would not attack each other. While the peace activists were calling for banning the nuclear bomb, the security experts were arguing that the bombs were actually ensuring a “Warm Peace” by preventing direct confrontation between the two Super Powers. Thankfully, the Cold War ended, when Soviet Union broke up in 1991, not due to any war or invasion, but because of the communist economic structure collapsed in the face of democracy and free market. During the 1980s, thanks to the initiative by the UN, there was gradual realization that the concept of national security need not be confined to the narrow ambit of East-West rivalry, but should to be broadened to include other issues that pose serious danger to individuals, societies, states and the humanity.

Star Books Review

Somewhere between Rajshahi and Nachol

Sanjeeb Drong writes with quiet passion and with a lot of nostalgia. The loss of heritage, the disappearance of land that was home is a theme that recurs in this work of intense devotion. But, then, Drong is not alone in the way he feels. Anyone who has watched the gradual assaults that have been made on the way, or ways, of life that Bangladesh's indigenous people or adivasis have suffered through since the British colonial period will empathise with him. Consider the recent forest fires in the hills, the casualties in terms of lives and homes put to the torch. But Drong's is not a partisan view of conditions. That he belongs to one of the tribes which have found Bangladesh to be home for long generations is a truth that does not mar the quality of the essays he presents in this work. There is, of course, anger in him as he narrates the tale of the tribal girl from the Chittagong Hill Tracts, a young woman forced by poverty to take the road to the city. It is in the putatively secure confines of domestic employment in that urban centre that her virginity is taken from her.

Medical science with Shakespearean undertones

A common allegation against physicians in Bangladesh is that they do not discharge their professional responsibilities with a mind of service to humanity, which their profession is meant for. Maybe it is not applicable to all physicians but it is true of a large number of them. There are multifarious reasons for this. As a nation we lack a humanitarian service-rendering tradition; many physicians coming out of poverty-ridden families set money-making as their only goal in life; at the institutional level it is not ensured that physicians will come to patients' service whenever and however necessary; ethics of medical practice are not inculcated properly in a physician's mind; and a wave of capitalism has driven medical practitioners into a rat race for material gains. It is undoubtedly a sorry state of affairs.

Of reputations proper and misplaced

Swedish linguist Sven Ohman (1936-2008) knew differently, and it would be even harder to imagine why he believed that Noam Chomsky (b. 1928--) has never been a linguist. It is something hard to believe for anyone who is familiar with the name of Chomsky and the reputation it carries. Formerly an Uppsala University professor of linguistics, Sven Ohman in his book, The Essence of Language: A Philosophical Problem, has successfully established his observations and findings denying Chomsky's position as a linguist.

Exploring the mind landscape

The field of study called Memetics arose in the 1990s to explore the concept of cultural ideas, symbols or practices being transmitted from one mind to another through speech, gestures, rituals or other imitable phenomena. The etymology of the term relates to the Greek word “mimema” which means something imitated. This controversial new field, therefore, makes an elaborate study of the universal human tendency to imitate.



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