The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Tuesday, July 29, 2014


News of: Sunday, 21st of March, 2010

Front Page

Wasa stink to stay

Filthy and smelly Wasa water is causing immense sufferings to people in some parts of the capital with the onset of the dry season.

PM for direct road, rail links with China

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday expressed her firm conviction in road and rail links being established between Chittagong and Kunming, to boost trade and investment between their respective countries.

VoIP watch to go on

The BTRC will continue its investigation of illegal VoIP activities by any telephone operator or Internet service provider and shut them down, if found guilty, as it did in cases of three private landline companies and 18 ISPs recently.

PMO-run 20 websites hacked

Hackers yesterday attacked 20 district websites operated by the Prime Minister's Office.

Teesta sees no major progress

The India-Bangladesh Joint Rivers Commission (JRC) yesterday asked water resources secretaries of the two countries to analyse Dhaka's draft on expeditious conclusion of an interim agreement on sharing the Teesta waters.

Stampede at RMG factory

At least one garment factory worker died and 30 others were injured in a stampede, as workers got panic-stricken after a strip light exploded in Matrix Sweater Limited at Chhoidana in Gazipur sadar yesterday.

Problems not heard, no plan given

The grassroots level leaders of BNP yesterday expressed resentment over the union representatives' conference saying they got no guidelines from the discussion except "a series of adoration of Tarique Rahman".

20 injured as Bangalees, Santals clash

At least 20 people were injured in a clash between indigenous people and Bangalees yesterday over a piece of land belonging to a Christian missionary establishment at Baldipukur in Mithapukur upazila.

No to symbolic war crimes trial

The Sector Commanders' Forum (SCF) firmly rejected the government's plan of "symbolic trial" of war criminals at a press briefing yesterday.

SC bucks up lower court

The Supreme Court issued a set of directives for the lower court judges to improve their performance and increase case-disposal rate.

Srimangal tree cutting goes on

Srimangal's Nahar Tea Garden authority continued felling trees with the number of chopped down trees hitting 1,200 till yesterday.

Lotus Temple excavated

In Wari-Bateshwar of Narsingdi, archaeologists have recently excavated a 1,400-year-old Lotus Temple, the first proof of flourishing of Buddhism in the region.

Koirala passes away

Girija Prasad Koirala, the former Nepalese prime minister who brokered the peace deal that ended a bloody 10-year civil war, died yesterday aged 85, an aide said.

US, others back war crimes trial

The international community has extended its support to the Bangladesh government for holding the trial of 1971 war criminals.

Pro-VC resigns

Professor Anisul Haque, pro-vice chancellor (academic) of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University, has stepped down from his position citing personal reason.

Editorial

After the PM's visit to Beijing . . .

THE move by Bangladesh and China, in light of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's visit to Beijing, to forge a closer partnership of cooperation between the two countries adds a new dimension to their bilateral relations. In the past many decades since the two nations established diplomatic ties, the degree of cooperation between them in various fields, especially economic relations and in the realm of infrastructure building has been on a rising curve. With the latest prime ministerial visit, there is little question that there has been a deepening of existing bilateral links and all for reasons spelt out in no small detail in the joint statement issued on the visit in Beijing.

The high achievers in O-and A-levels

CONGRATULATIONS students. You have made the entire nation proud with your exceptionally brilliant results that you have earned through application and hard work. We feel exuberance in our heart to recall that 52 students got world's highest marks, among whom 31 secured the highest marks worldwide in 14 subjects in GCE O-level examinations and another 21 in six subjects in A-level examinations in 2008-2009 academic session. Furthermore, two students obtained A grade in 11 subjects in the 2009 O-level examinations and three others in six subjects in the 2009 A-level examinations.

Sports

Tigers subside after Tamim surge

Bangladesh batsmen flattered to deceive as they staggered along on the first day of the second Test match against England at the Sher-e-Bangla Stadium in Mirpur yesterday.

Tredwell does well

Kent off-spinner James Tredwell is a veteran when it comes to playing county cricket. But he's only on the go in his international career. At the age of 28, he would have been thought to be an oldie for Bangladeshi standards. But the man who earned his Test cap for England at the Sher-e-Bangla Stadium yesterday, was no less excited than an 18-year-old. Well he's got every reason to be excited after completing a successful day in the middle with two of the most important scalps of the opposition.

'It was one-day batting'

A total of 330 runs on the board at the end of the first day's play in the second and final Test might not look too bad but still there are reasons to be dissatisfied with the batting of the home team at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur yesterday.

BCB launches NCL T20

With a target to tune up the national cricketers for the forthcoming Twenty20 World Championship in West Indies, Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) are all set to launch the first-ever National Cricket League T20 competition from April 11 to 20.

Feni players injured in road mishap

At least eight players of the Feni Soccer Club suffered injuries while their bus collided with a microbus in Comilla yesterday.

New IPL sides to be named today

The Indian Premier League (IPL) is set to unveil its two new franchises in Chennai on Sunday, with at least five bidders reported to be competing for the slots.

Mirpur Masala

England were at the receiving end of three Australians scoring a first day century before lunch. Don Bradman made it in Leeds in 1930 when he reached perfection with his 334. Before the Don, Victor Trumper and Charlie Macartney took the English apart in 1902 and 1926 respectively. So when Tamim Iqbal was dismissed for 85 here in Dhaka, some Englishmen must have heaved a sigh of relief.

Wolves hold Villa

Aston Villa 2 (Carew 16, 82) Wolves 2 (Craddock 23, Milner 38-og)

Bayern angry at French

Bayern Munich have hit out at France's national team for their treatment of Franck Ribery, and are set to lodge an official complaint with football's world ruling body FIFA.

Fergie fans the flames

Sir Alex Ferguson has fanned the flames ahead of Sunday's potentially explosive encounter between Manchester United and Liverpool at Old Trafford by dismissing his arch-rivals as one-season wonders.

Caroline, Jelena in final

Jelena Jankovic (SRB x6) beat Samantha Stosur (AUS x8) 6-2, 6-4
Caroline Wozniacki (DEN x2) beat Agnieszka Radwanska (POL x5) 6-2, 6-3

Pressure rising on Ancelotti

Chelsea's Champions League exit at the hands of Jose Mourinho's Inter Milan on Tuesday inevitably led to questions being asked about the future of Carlo Ancelotti and his well-paid players.

Mumbai fall to Bangalore

Jacques Kallis continued his rich vein of form scoring an unbeaten 62 to lead Royal Challengers Bangalore to an easy seven wicket victory over Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League at the Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai yesterday. Kallis shared 85 runs opening stand with Pandey, who scored a rapid 40 to put Bangalore on their way.

Hertha punish 23 fans

Hertha Berlin have banned 23 of their fans from all football stadiums in Germany for three years after supporters rioted at Berlin's Olympic Stadium following last weekend's defeat by Nuremberg.

Aaron snubs Ryan calls

Stoke defender Ryan Shawcross has yet to hear from Aaron Ramsey as he tries to apologise for the tackle which broke the Arsenal midfielder's leg.

Kiwis in dire straits

After being overwhelmed by Michael Clarke and Marcus North in the field, New Zealand watched their top-order fail to leave them facing a massive task to save the first Test in Wellington on Saturday. Clarke's outstanding 168, his highest score, and a career-saving century from North allowed Australia to declare at 459 for 5 and the hosts limped to 108 for 4 at stumps on the second day.

PCL ready to roll

After the grand success of the first edition, the Port City League (PCL) to be held in Sharjah this season will see 100,000 dollars up for grabs for the winners, said organisers yesterday.

Rajasthan win at last

Finally, Rajasthan Royals clicked as a unit and won a game. It was a slow wicket, perhaps one of the slowest tracks in this Indian Premier League (IPL), and Rajasthan, whose batsmen were harassed on bouncier pitches in this tournament so far, immediately looked more at home.

Robin ends Andy bid

Robin Soderling denied Andy Murray a return trip to the Indian Wells Masters 1000 final Friday, ousting the Briton in straight sets to set up a semifinal showdown with Andy Roddick.

Saptarshi keeps lead

International Master Saptarshi Roy Chowdhury of India was maintaining his solo lead with 5.5 points after the end of the seventh round of the Six Seasons Grandmasters Chess Tournament at the Tulip Lounge of Uttara Club yesterday.

Gang stab 3, rob city house

A gang of robbers stabbed three people while looting the house of a Jubo League leader in Dhaka early yesterday.

Business

Drug makers seek easy forex rules

The applications for fund transfer from three local pharmaceutical companies intending to buy overseas licences for drug exports remain pending with the central bank for long.

Grameen, Adidas to make low-cost shoes

Grameen Group and German sports apparel maker Adidas are planning for a joint venture to make low-cost shoes in Bangladesh for the poor.

Viyellatex to set up green building

The country's garment industry will see its first "carbon-neutral" factory to be constructed on the outskirts of Dhaka by the middle of the next year.

DSE polls today

The election for four directors of Dhaka Stock Exchange will be held today on the bourse premises.

Crude oil prices dive in volatile trade

Oil prices sank heavily this week as traders tracked the dollar and Greek debt concerns, and shrugged off a widely-expected decision from the 12-nation OPEC cartel to maintain crude output levels.

Inter-American Development Bank seeks capital boost

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) sought a boost in capital for increased lending to Latin America and the Caribbean as its annual meeting opened on Friday in Mexico.

Motor show ends on high note

Most of the participants in the three-day Dhaka Motor Show that ended yesterday were happy as they witnessed a huge turnout and many of them bagged satisfactory spot orders.

JS body moves on quick disposal of revenue cases

A parliamentary body yesterday asked the authorities concerned to take immediate steps for disposing of 12,000 cases involving around Tk 5,000 crore as revenue, now pending with the High Court for years.

Singer launches summer sales campaign

Singer Plus, the retail chain from Singer Bangladesh, launched its special summer campaign on March 16, the company said in a statement.

Trade through Bhomra on hold

Border trade through Bhomra land port remained suspended since last morning, as an indefinite transport strike was enforced by Ghojadanga Truck Workers Union at Ghojadanga on Indian side.

US hosts next Apec talks

The United States said Friday it would host annual talks among trade ministers of 21 economies of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in the western state of Montana in May next year.

Ctg port to be digitised by year-end

Chittagong port will be digitalised by year-end to upgrade the premier seaport's operations.

Soul-searching after recession

The global financial crisis appears to be over but the search for the root causes of the crisis and the mistakes made by traditional banks and financial institutions is still on.

Strike cancels thousands of British Airways flights

British Airways cancelled more than 1,000 flights after its cabin crew launched a three-day strike Saturday, wreaking havoc on the plans of tens of thousands of passengers just before the busy spring holiday season.

BAT sets up safe drinking water plant in Kushtia

British American Tobacco (BAT) Bangladesh has recently launched a safe drinking water plant at Bheramara in Kushtia, said a statement.

GP declares 60pc cash dividend

Grameenphone (GP), the only listed telecom company in Bangladesh stockmarket, has recommended 60 percent cash dividend for the year 2009.

Euro plunges

The euro sank against the dollar on Friday as investors sought the safe-haven US currency amid doubts over whether the eurozone will rescue Greece from a debt crisis.

India unexpectedly hikes rates a quarter point

India's central bank has unexpectedly hiked key interest rates a quarter of a percentage point, as the bank tries to cool high inflation amid a faster-than-expected economic rebound.

Pressure mounts over IMF role in Greek crisis

Europe split over IMF intervention for debt-ridden Greece on Friday, upping pressure on national leaders to resolve crisis plans just days from a crunch EU summit.

Russian state firm to bid for US tanker contract: lawyer

Russian state-owned aerospace group United Aircraft Corporation plans to bid for a 35-billion-dollar US Air Force tanker contract, teaming up with a US partner, a lawyer representing UAC said Friday.

Italy offers 300 million euros in incentives

The Italian government announced on Friday it would offer 300 million euros (400 million dollars) in incentives to aid industries having economic trouble in a "slow recovery."

Metropolitan

Additional 4.8 lakh tonnes of hilsa produced in 6 yrs

An additional 4.83 lakh tonnes of hilsa worth Tk 12,075 crore has been produced in the last six years since the government started implementing jatka (hilsa fry) preservation programme.

2.5 lakh children die from preventable causes a year

Around 2.5 lakh children die from easily preventable causes in Bangladesh a year before they reach the fifth birthday, speakers at a national consultation on newborn and child survival said yesterday.

Marginalised women demand end to discrimination

Marginalised women from excluded communities raised their voice yesterday demanding an end to gender and racial discrimination they face in their everyday life.

Boy killed in Keraniganj clash

A teenage boy was killed and six others were injured in a clash between two groups of villagers over a trifling matter at Baghna village in Keraniganj yesterday.

12,000 rotten eggs seized, 2 held in Ctg

Members of Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) yesterday seized some 12,000 rotten eggs brought here for selling at different bakeries and arrested two people in this connection.

All necessary steps taken to start war crimes trial

Law Minister Shafique Ahmed yesterday visited the old High Court building where a tribunal will be set up for holding trial of 1971 war criminals.

Ban financial institutions of Jamaat

Awami League leaders at a rally yesterday alleged that Jamaat-e-Islami is spending crores of taka to foil the trial of war criminals.

Int'l workshop on counter-terrorism begins today

A five-day international workshop on 'Counter-Terrorism Capacity Building' begins at Hotel Sheraton in the city under the auspices of Bangladesh Institute of Peace and Security Studies today.

Barisal AL leader feared drowned

An Awami League leader was feared drowned in Kirtonkhola river in Barisal after he fell from an engine-run boat while crossing the river last night.

Researchers to study poverty, climate change in Bangladesh

Researchers at the University of Manchester's School of Environment and Development have been awarded £500,000 to study poverty and climate change in Bangladesh.

Community police should be strengthened

Community police should be strengthened to reduce the gap between police and public as people could not reach police due to brokers active in the police stations, Home Minister Sahara Khatun said yesterday.

Call to formulate law to ensure rights of Dalits

Harijan and Dalit community yesterday demanded formulation of a law to eliminate the social discrimination against them and to ensure their civic rights.

4 killed in road accidents

Four people were killed and 36 others injured in separate road accidents in Feni, Jhenidah and Mymensingh yesterday.

College girl dies in rooftop fall, 2 domestic helps found dead

A female college student and two female domestic helps were killed in three separate incidents in the capital yesterday.

Deportation of students from UK protested

Speakers at a human chain here yesterday protested deportation of Bangladeshi students from the United Kingdom, though they possess valid visas.

Two cops suspended for beating UP member

Two policemen of Morelganj Police Station were suspended yesterday for torturing an UP member after failing to arrest his son, an accused in a theft case.

Woman killed after rape in Madaripur

Police recovered the body of a woman, believed to have been killed after rape, from Charkandi village in the district's Shibchar upazila yesterday noon.

Two bodies recovered in city

Police recovered two decomposed bodies, including the beheaded body of a young woman, from the city's Sher-e-Bangla Nagar and Tejgaon industrial areas yesterday.

Death threat to Pankaj condemned

Different socio-political organisations yesterday condemned the death threat to Gono Forum Presidium Member Pankaj Bhattacharya.

Tiger kills fisherman

A tiger killed a fisherman while he was catching fish at Podkhali canal near the river Chuna in Sundarbans yesterday.

Woman held in connection with rape of teenage girl

Police arrested a woman yesterday in connection with the rape of a teenage girl at Nandipara in the city's Khilgaon area early Friday.

Moti Master passes away

Matiur Rahman Bhuiyan (Moti Master), an organiser of the War of Liberation and educationist of Keraniganj, passed away due to old age complications at his residence at village Bhawal Monoharia in Keraniganj on March 18 (Thursday) at the age of 91, says a press release.

National

Farmers feeding dying boro plants to cattle

The acute power crisis in Tangail district is hampering irrigation during the peak boro paddy cultivation season, much to the concern of farmers who had expected a good yield this season.

BDR mutineers' trial resumes at Satkhira today

Trial of the Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) mutiny case will resume today as the Special Court No-1 set up at 41 Rifles Battalion headquarters in Satkhira will record statements of the prosecution witnesses (PWs).

Another victim of teasing by delinquents

Failing to cope up with taunts made by some delinquents, a schoolgirl committed suicide by hanging herself from a ceiling fan at their house in Kishoreganj town on Wednesday night.

Babar grilled, sent to jail

Grilling of former state minister for home affairs Luthfuzzaman Babar for second time in the Kibria killing case ended yesterday. Judicial magistrate of Habiganj Shahidul Amin yesterday sent him back to the jail after CID produced him before the court.

Two more RU Shibir men arrested

Police arrested two activists of Islami Chhatra Shibir at Rajshahi University (RU) yesterday and the day before in connection with the February 9 violence on the campus.

Plunderers fell 80 trees

Tree 'plunderers' cut down at least 80 Mahogany trees in broad daylight at Jora Mondir near Murolir Moar (intersection) area in the outskirts of the town on Friday.

AL leader murdered

A local leader of the ruling Awami League (AL) was murdered at Tatadhan union in Rangpur Sadar upazila early yesterday.

Illegal sand lifting on defying all orders

A vested quarter is lifting sand from the Meghna River using a number of dredgers in an unplanned way for about three years although they had the permission for dredging for only five months.

10 injured as Jubo Dal groups clash in Munshiganj

At least 10 people were injured as two groups of Jubo Dal men clashed on the BNP office premises in the town yesterday.

Letters

Rich poor gap

It is highly rewarding to go through the thought-provoking articles of MM Akash and Khonkdar Ibrahim Khaled entitled 'Rising inequality takes shine off growth' and 'rural financing -- the innovative way' respectively appearing in economy and climate change supplements of DS dated 02/24.

Tiny tormentors!

Mosquito menace has become the talk of the town in the Chittagong city. The problem is deteriorating by leaps and bounds. It becomes so intolerable and annoying that there is hardly any place to stay for a while. People of all walks of life, particularly the students (SSC and HSC candidates in particular) being the worst sufferers cannot concentrate on their studies. The irritable song of mosquito is not be stopped by the coil or mosquito prevention spray.

Ship breaking industry

It is detrimental for us in many ways. It is responsible for the pollution of air, water and land. It is very harmful for workers in ship breaking yards. Even it causes death to the workers. For example, 400 workers have died in the last 20 years.

Cell phone hijacking

Nowadays cell phone has become a part and parcel of our everyday life. Passing a single day without cell phone is unthinkable for many of us. Today the usage of cell phone is not just limited in distant talking, rather it is being used in multiple ways. We all are dreaming of a digital Bangladesh. And it goes without saying that mobile phone can play a very significant role to make our dream come true.

Observe “Genocide Day”

May 5, 1971 was a red letter day at the famous North Bengal Sugar Mills at Gopalpur in Natore district. About one hundred innocent people including my beloved eldest brother, the then General Manager Lieutenant Anwarul Azim, LLB, officers, labourers and staff of this mill were brutally killed on the staircases of a pond in the mill premises in 1971.

Sin of mediocrity?

Through your paper I would like to draw the attention of the higher authorities in the ministry of education to a stigma which the students and parents of some schools are facing. It is seen that when the students are in class VIII, those who fail to secure their desired marks (say 60%) in exams, are forced to leave the school. This is done in utter disregard to a child's fundamental right to education. They forget that all the fingers are not equal. Allah, the Almighty, has not made all human beings equal, in physique, mental capabilities and character. This is applicable to children also. This sort of pruning by the authorities of such schools put the future and even life of a student in jeopardy. The cast away students go through mental agony for being reprimanded by parents, feeling guilty and shame for not securing the 'desired marks' and ridiculed by fellow students and it affects their psyche. How are the people in these school sure that a child who secured less than the desired marks set by the school will not be able to pass the public exam? Why do they like to have only A grade students? Perhaps to boast about their 100% A grade result. This is not a credit of the school. The real credit of the school lies in making mediocre students better. If A grade is the only acceptable grade for them, then why B, C and D in public exams? Why do they demoralize such low grade students by showing the door?

Natural mosquito repellent

A friend of mine wrote to me from Australia that if you cut a lemon into half and stick a few cloves into them and place them around the house you will be free of mosquitoes and this is a lot safer than the usual mosquito repellents, I have tried this formula on a slice of lemon with few cloves on it and placed it near my work desk. Surprisingly, it worked and mosquitoes did not bother me. A slice of lemon with cloves will last for almost two weeks. So it is inexpensive too. I hope your esteemed readers will try this formula to keep mosquitoes away. A natural mosquito repellent indeed!

City crime rate

Every time we have an elected government, the law & order situation deteriorates. I would request DS to do an statistical analysis as to what's the city crime rate during an elected government as opposed to a caretaker govt. Because it's apparent to citizens like us, that with every elected government package (sorry to say both parties) we see a direct link to higher crime rates. It is evident to everyone, that some quarters (mostly belonging to ruling parties) take advantage of their elected godfathers & our elite police force work, simply as an audience (knowing even if they do catch these criminals ... there would be someone calling from high ups to release them instantly ).. Simply analyse, how many of ruling party thugs have been arrested during their tenure. In AL time you will see only BNP activists getting caught & vice versa !!

SBA's article

The writing of Mr. Badrul Ahsan attracts serious readers who want to keep abreast of the matters happening around them every day (Daily Star: 5 March 2010). But this time, I surmise, he has wilfully evaded or failed to single out the main players for the failure of the spirit of 1/11 in our country. It is very much unlikely that Mr. Ahsan does not know them all. If he was honest enough for the purpose he wrote about, he also should have at least hinted at those who foiled the whole game wilfully.

Chinese world order

With the United States facing a financial meltdown and record budget and trade deficits, the world is witnessing an emerging world order where the United States is no longer the dominant force. Unlike earlier dominant powers -- Rome and Britain-- that faced catastrophic military crisis before collapsing economically, the United States is dwarfed economically by China's industrial might. Rome collapsed when it faced the attacks by the vandals and British empire collapsed in the wake of two world wars. But the United States is facing an economic meltdown although it faces no real military threat. It is becoming dependent on rising China as an economic juggernaut. By the middle of 2007, China achieved several historical milestones: it displaced Canada as the biggest exporter of goods to America; it displaced America as Japan's biggest trading partner; it displaced Japan as Australia's biggest trading partner and it displaced America as the European Union's biggest trading partner. All this happened at a time when the United States has been facing a financial meltdown and massive budget and trade deficits.

Banani Road 11

Since the opening of the Banani-Gulshan Bridge, Banani Road No 11 has been promoted from being just crowded, to one that is simply un-passable from morning till late at night. Up-market eateries, bakeries, boutiques, fashion arcades, trendy garments stores, doctors, clinics, banks, offices, apartments etc are all vying to be there to cater to a horde of customers with access to easy money.

Steel export

Mr. JU Khan's report on the matter published in your 'Star Business' on March 7 is a heartening matter. Not being basically an iron and steel manufacturer, it is really good to hear that we are exporting steel flat products (GP&CI sheets) to Africa, competing with steel giants like Japan, South Korea and India-- all Asian countries! Our steel producers deserve congratulations for their breakthrough in a non-conventional sector in international export. It would have been good to know the percentage of total tonnage of these (GP&CI flats) products that we export compared to countries from Asia and Europe.

Women's rights

We are considering women's rights. But considering only such rights often creates many problems in our society. The declaration of reserving 9/6 seats in big/small buses for only women is creating so many problems, especially during office time.

International

Taliban arrests had 'negative impact'

The arrest of Taliban leaders has had a "negative impact" on peace talks between the Afghan government and the insurgents, a spokesman for President Hamid Karzai said yesterday.

Quartet 'strongly supports' Palestinian state: UN chief

UN chief Ban Ki-moon began a visit to the Palestinian territories and Israel yesterday, saying the Middle East Quartet "strongly supports" Palestinian efforts to create their own state.

PPP govt pushing Pakistan towards 'anarchy': Imran

Criticising the Pakistan People's Party (PPP)-led government for failing to address issues such as price hike, poverty and unemployment, cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan has said that the ruling leaders are pushing the country towards 'anarchy'.

Thai govt and Red Shirts to hold talks: Senator

A Thai government minister is to meet a representative of the "Red Shirt" protesters holding mass anti-government rallies in Bangkok, a senator said yesterday.

US allows India to quiz Mumbai attack kingpin

The United States will permit India to question a Chicago man who has admitted scoping out sites for the deadly 2008 Mumbai attacks, Home Minister P Chidambaram said yesterday.

Pak gunmen kill 7

Gunmen have shot dead seven people in separate incidents in Pakistan's restive southwest, police said yesterday.

US weighs more troops for north Afghanistan

US commanders may send an additional 2,500 troops to fend off the Taliban in northern Afghanistan, a region that had been relatively peaceful until recently, a defence official said Friday.

Manmohan asks state govts to look into death of tigers

Concerned over death of tigers in reservatories, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has decided to personally take up the matter with state governments.

Koirala: Grand old man of Nepalese politics

GP Koirala is one of Nepal's most long-standing and experienced politicians and has led the country through some of its biggest upheavals.

Kashmir to assess water loss due to treaty with Pakistan

The Jammu and Kashmir government will hire a private agency to assess water losses suffered by the state due to the Indus Water Treaty provisions that restrict the use of its three rivers.

Obama drums up support for healthcare votes

US President Barack Obama girded Friday for a crucial weekend vote on his sweeping health care overhaul plan, with Democrats poised to make history after a century of struggling for reform.

Maoists kidnap 5 officials in Jharkhand, later release all

Maoist rebels abducted five government officials, including an additional judicial magistrate, at gun point from Latehar district in Jharkhand yesterday noon. The rebels, however, released all of them at Gumla after a few hours, police said.

Obama reaches out to Iranian civilians

President Barack Obama yesterday subtly shifted US rhetoric on Iran, pledging to ensure Iranians could access the Internet without fear of censorship, and blaming Tehran for isolating itself.

Iran wasting chance for dialogue: Russia

Russia on Friday warned Iran it was missing out on a chance to start a broad dialogue, as US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton again sought to win the Kremlin's assent for tougher stance on Tehran.

'Tehran allows Laden daughter to leave'

A teenaged daughter of Osama bin Laden has been allowed to fly out of Tehran where she had taken refuge in Saudi Arabia's embassy, a Saudi-financed newspaper reported on Friday.

US, Russia, will sign new nuclear treaty in April

Russia and the United States will sign a new nuclear disarmament treaty in early April in the Czech capital Prague, Russian daily newspaper Kommersant reported Saturday, citing a diplomatic source.

Pope apologises for Irish priests' sex abuse

Pope Benedict XVI has apologised to victims of child sex abuse by Catholic priests in Ireland.

Sarkozy's party braces for electoral wipe-out

President Nicolas Sarkozy's party braced for a potential electoral wipe-out in Sunday's final round of regional elections, which an alliance of the rival left hopes will give it a national sweep and a staging ground for 2012 presidential voting.

Queen recycles her clothes!

Queen Elizabeth II has been revealed to like recycling her outfits and not wear them only once, making sure she gets full use of them.

Arts & Entertainment

Rooted in our tradition

Cultural icon Waheedul Haque, who was one of the creative minds behind Chhayanaut, believed that it would not be possible to form a complete idea of our culture, without being familiar with our folk music -- rooted in our tradition. Upholding this ideal, Chhayanaut has been arranging a cultural programme featuring traditional art forms for the last couple of years. The programme has also been held to mark Waheedul Haque's 77th birth anniversary.

Raw lines and strokes

From the inception of his career, Anukul Majumdar's works delve deep into motherhood, childhood and pure rustic ambiances. His figures are replete with substance and his paintings help us to remember the works of legendary painter SM Sultan. His strokes are very rough, with lots of curves and twisted lines. His works give us a deep essence of the meaning of life, affection and quintessence.

Book Fair marking Bangabandhu’s birth anniversary

To mark the 90th birth anniversary of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and National Children's Day, Magura district administration organised a three -day book fair that ended on Friday.

Remembering Waheedul Haque

On the occasion of the birth anniversary of legendary cultural activist Waheedul Haque, Konthashilon organised a three-day programme. The programme ended yesterday. The programme was inaugurated by noted litterateur Shawkat Ali. The programme featured a discussion, musical soiree and poetry recitation.

Aupee back on stage with Kathak

The elegance of Kathak dance, as performed by Aupee Karim along with Tahnina Islam Jhumi, Farah Shahwar Jhunjhun and Snata Shahri, drew much appreciation at the Shilpakala Academy on March 19. Once she was on stage, she got absorbed in the rhythm of movement at the one-and -a half -hour performance.

Month long ‘Theatre Festival’ in Dinajpur

A month-long 'Theatre Festival' kicked off on Friday evening with a colourful inaugural session here at Dinajpur Nattya Samity auditorium.

Hundred poets assemble in festival of colours

The sixth 'Kabita Utshab' (poetry festival) organised by Satkhira Kabita Parishad, an organisation formed by local poets, was held at Shahid Abdur Razzak Park on March 19.

Photo exhibition in Mymensingh

A 10 -day photo exhibition marking Independence Day began at the campus of Mymensingh Medical College (MMC) on March 16.

Fantasy Kingdom celebrates eighth anniversary

Fantasy Kingdom celebrated it's 8th anniversary on March 19 and March 20, says a press release. The park was decorated with colourful festoons. S. M. Kamal Uddin, Chairman Concord Group was present on the occasion. He said that from now on, every Tuesday would be celebrated as 'Parent's Day' which means, on every Tuesday each parent visitor of the Fantasy Kingdom Park will get discount on entry.

Aneela’s new fashion line

Celebrity Artist Kalidas Karmakar was the centre of attention at Aneela Haque's launch of her new Summer-Boishaakh Couture line called: "Red", says a press release.

OP-ED

A historic visit

SHEIKH Hasina's 5-day visit to China is indeed a bold initiative. This, her first visit to China since the AL-led government assumed office in January 2009 is sure to be strategically important for Bangladesh. Over the years China has proved to be a good friend of Bangladesh, and we are now keen to further develop our infrastructure with Chinese collaboration.

The great nuclear folly

MANY Indian governments have pushed some anti-democratic or unconscionable laws and policies. In 1984-85, Rajiv Gandhi blundered on the Shah Bano case and opened the Babri Masjid's gates to Hindu communalists, eventually catapulting them into power. In 1998, the BJP conducted nuclear tests and tried to rewrite the constitution. The first United Progressive Alliance government sought the US nuclear deal like nirvana -- splitting society, even the nuclear establishment.

'Land issue is one of the crucial problems'

Raja Debashish Roy is the chief of the Chakma Circle. He is a practicing barrister and was bestowed the title of king after his father Raja Tridev Roy went into exile following the independence of Bangladesh from Pakistan in 1971. During the immediate past Caretaker Government, he served as the Chief Adviser's Special Assistant for Forest and Environment. Raja Debashish Roy, who has long been an eloquent and impassioned advocate and spokesperson for the Chakma community, talks about the recent unrest in the CHT region with The Daily Star's Faruq Hasan.

Don't wait for disaster

NO country can afford to ignore the lessons of the earthquakes in Chile and Haiti. We cannot stop such disasters from happening. But we can dramatically reduce their impact, if the right disaster risk reduction measures are taken in advance.


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