The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Sunday, September 21, 2014


News of: Thursday, 1st of April, 2010

Front Page

Target 13 low river bridges

A taskforce to save rivers yesterday identified 13 low bridges on rivers around the capital as obstacles to watercraft.

AL's Dhaka lawmakers send SOS to govt

Lawmakers from Dhaka and Narayanganj yesterday urged the government to solve city's persisting water crisis immediately.

PM puts blame on past govts

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday blamed the ongoing electricity and gas crises on past BNP and caretaker governments.

668 jawans accused in fresh case

A mutiny case was lodged with BDR Special Court-5 yesterday accusing 668 Bangladesh Rifles personnel of 24 Rifle Battalion under Dhaka Sector of the paramilitary force.

A belated plea

The attorney general's office filed an appeal petition with the appellate division on Tuesday after more than a month of a High Court directive that allowed cutting down 3,550 trees in Khasia settlement of Nahar Tea Garden in Srimongol of Moulvibazar.

India firms up $lb soft loan

India has offered 1.75 percent interest rate on $ 1 billion credit to Bangladesh announced during Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's visit to that country in January.

Slaves of balloon

At first glance it might appear that it snowed here moments ago. Everything around Allahr Dan Balloon factory in South Keraniganj in the capital is snow-white. But the white blanket hanging in the air and covering everything is not snow but powder being used to unwind balloons after production.

EC to lessen penalties

The Election Commission has moved to lessen the penalties for some electoral offences during polls to local government bodies so that executive magistrates can hold their trials.

Stabbing was 'exit strategy'

Ashraf Ali stabbed his classmate Barsha and her parents to make sure a safe get away, confessed Ashraf at the Detective Branch office in the capital yesterday.

MRP launched, issuance not before May

The government today launches the machine-readable passport and visa project only from its Agargaon office while the Department of Immigration and Passport is still ill-equipped and capable of producing only a limited number of passports.

Rab seizes unregistered SIM cards

Rapid Action Battalion personnel recovered around 3,500 unregistered SIM cards and arrested five people at a mobile phone store at Motaleb Plaza in the capital's Paribagh yesterday evening.

Upgraded Drug Admin yet to hire manpower

Over two months have passed since the Directorate of Drug Administration (DA) was upgraded to a directorate general, but the institution is yet to recruit its requisite manpower except the helmsman.

HSC exams begin today

Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) and its equivalent examinations begin today with a total of 7,36,373 examinees sitting for the exams in 2,037 centres across the country.

Mojaheed's convenient amnesia

Bangladesh Jameet-e-Islami Secretary General Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mojaheed yesterday claimed he is not being able to recall the total range of his activities during the Liberation War of Bangladesh in 1971.

Frame rules in 2 months to legalise VoIP

A parliamentary standing committee yesterday asked the post and telecommunications ministry to formulate a legal framework within two months to legalise VoIP (voice over Internet protocol) business.

PM receives IT award

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday received the prestigious 'ASOCIO IT Award' for her contribution to advancing ICT sector in Bangladesh.

Denmark to give €75m for water treatment

Denmark will provide an interest free loan of 75 million Euro for constructing a large new water treatment plant at Sayedabad in the capital with a production capacity of 2,25,000 cubic metres (cumec) per day.

Tornado lashes Rangamati

An indigenous woman died and around 50 others including a Buddhist monk were injured, some of them seriously, as a tornado lashed different villages in the remote Sajek union under Baghaichhari upazila of the district Tuesday night.

Nurunnabi AL's choice

The ruling Awami League has nominated Nurunnabi Chowdhury Shawon for contesting the April 24 by-polls in Bhola-3 constituency.

Diarrhoea situation worsens

Diarrhoea situation in the city has deteriorated further as 110 more patients were admitted to the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Diseases and Research, Bangladesh in 24 hours till yesterday evening.

Cox's Bazar girls' madrasa attacked

At least 60 people including 14 policemen, 12 teachers and girl students were injured as several hundred people attacked a girls' madrasa in Cox's Bazar yesterday.

JS session resumes today

The parliament resumes sitting today after a nine-day recess with the passing of six bills in this session as the only major scheduled job of the House remaining.

Dockworkers stage sit-in at Ctg port

The dockworkers yesterday staged a sit-in for one and a half hours here demanding prime minister's intervention for reinstatement of jobs of the workers as per the minutes of a inter-ministerial meeting.

Photo show on 'crossfire' finally opens to public

The photography exhibition titled "Crossfire" by noted photojournalist Shahidul Alam was finally opened for public at Drik Gallery yesterday, eight days after police obstructed visitors from entering the gallery.

Jamaat targets water, power crises

Jamaat-e-Islami yesterday announced it will embark on agitating the people against the ongoing utility crisis in the country, while the government is preparing to indict many leaders of the party for crimes against humanity.

75 countries set carbon emission targets for 2020

Seventy-five countries accounting for more than 80 percent of greenhouse gases from energy use have filed pledges to cut or limit carbon emissions by 2020, the UN climate convention said yesterday.

Switzerland says legal immunity protects Zardari

Swiss authorities said yesterday they could not reopen a money-laundering case against the Pakistani president as long as he enjoys legal immunity; a welcome answer for the Islamabad government after the Supreme Court forced it to request the case be resumed.

4 dead in Washington 'drive-by' shooting

Four people were killed and six others wounded in the US capital late Tuesday in a shooting in one of the city's poor southeast neighbourhoods, US media reported.

Editorial

Power crisis

THE government's latest measure announced to combat the massive power crisis that is crippling the nation, the directive that air conditioning units be prohibited from operating from the hours of 6-11pm, is nothing short of the ridiculous, and suggests a government that is quite out of its depth.

Exposed level crossings

UNMANNED railway level crossings, where many fatal accidents took place over the years, still remain a major worry to both pedestrians and vehicles in eight northern districts, as 297 out of 415 crossings have no gates or gatemen! The news is a real shocker and an indicator of people's safety having little or no place in the railway managers' plans.

Sports

Real test of selection

The national selectors are in a tight spot with the selection of the Bangladesh A and Academy teams as both sides have international commitments at the same time.

Olic strike sinks Man Utd

Bayern Munich 2 (Ribery 76, Olic 90)-1 (Rooney 2) Man United

Bengal Tigers on course

Bengal Tigers of India took a big step towards qualifying for the semifinals by beating Dhaka Sports by 43 runs in their Port City Cricket League (PCL) clash at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium yesterday.

A Bollywood story!

If everything goes according to the script then April 15 will be the nuptial of the year with Pakistan star cricketer Shoaib Malik and Indian tennis sensation Sania Mirza set to tie the knot.

Seniors reign in battle of BKSPs

Defending champions Abahani posted a second successive win in the Dhaka Bank Club Cup Hockey tournament after they beat Mariner Youngs Club 5-2 at the Maulana Bhasani Hockey Stadium yesterday.

Abahani rope in Gilberto

In a bid to bring cohesion in the midfield to achieve a hattrick of league titles, defending champions Abahani have signed up Nigerian attacking midfielder Gilberto Felix Ben on the concluding day of the mid-term players' registration of the ongoing professional league yesterday.

Maruf, Faiaz drive Dhaka

Maruf's 74 and Faiaz's 71 helped Dhaka to a 40-run victory over Jamalpur in their clash of the 30th inter-district cricket championship at the Jamalpur Stadium yesterday.

Three post easy wins

Viquarunnisa Noon School, Scholastica and Green Herald International School won their respective matches in the Citycell Dhaka Metropolis School (Girl's) Football Championship at different venues in the city yesterday.

BKSP & Ankur to fight it out

BKSP and Rajbari's Ankur School and College moved into the final of the Standard Chartered National Cricket Tournament with comfortable wins against their respective opponents at different city venues yesterday.

Rooney out for four weeks

Wayne Rooney will be out for two to four weeks with the sprained ankle he sustained during Manchester United's 2-1 defeat to Bayern Munich in their Champions League quarterfinal tie yesterday, Sky Sports News have reported.

Lyon take control

Lyon 3 (Lopez 10, Bastos 32,Lopez (p) 77) - 1 (Chamakh 14) Bordeaux

Benfica test for Liverpool

Rafael Benitez's tenure at Liverpool has lost a lot of its sheen in the past couple of seasons but the Spaniard could do his chances of remaining in the post a power of good by landing the Europa League this season.

Fergie slams United

Sir Alex Ferguson slammed his team on Tuesday after seeing Manchester United lose 2-1 to Bayern Munich in the Champions League quarterfinal first leg and striker Wayne Rooney injured.

Trap turned down Juve

Republic of Ireland coach Giovanni Trapattoni has revealed that he turned down the Juventus job in favour of the challenge of steering the Irish towards Euro 2012 qualification.

Delhi thump Rajasthan

Delhi Daredevils outclassed Rajasthan Royals by inflicting a 67 run defeat in their IPL match at the Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi yesterday.

Jose unhappy with Italian football

Jose Mourinho sparked speculation about his future on Tuesday on the eve of his side Inter Milan's Champions League quarterfinal clash with CSKA Moscow by declaring he was unhappy with Italian football.

Jens confirms retirement

Stuttgart goalkeeper Jens Lehmann confirmed on Tuesday that he will retire at the end of the season.

More misery for Pompey

Portsmouth's miserable season took another turn for the worse on Tuesday when key players Hermann Hreidarsson and Danny Webber were both ruled out of action for at least six months.

Prandelli pledges Fiorentina stay

Cesare Prandelli has dismissed speculation over a move to Juventus next season by pledging his allegiance to Fiorentina on Tuesday in a statement on the club's website.

Berdych fells Federer

World No. 1 and top seed Roger Federer was sent crashing out of the ATP and WTA Masters tournament dropping a 6-4, 6-7 (3/7), 7-6 (8/6) fourth round marathon contest to Czech Tomas Berdych.

Australia sweep series

Mitchell Johnson achieved his second ten-wicket match haul in Tests to finish off New Zealand before lunch as Australia swept to a 2-0 series victory. New Zealand resumed at 185 for 5 chasing a record-breaking target of 479, but Johnson and Doug Bollinger dismissed them for 302 to secure a 176-run victory on the fifth and final day Hamilton yesterday.

Kieswetter, Lumb in Eng squad

Uncapped Hampshire batsman Michael Lumb has been named in England's 15-man squad for the World Twenty20 in the Caribbean next month, while Craig Kieswetter has been named as the sole wicketkeeper in the party, ahead of the current Test and ODI incumbent, Matt Prior.

Smith in for Proteas

Graeme Smith will be fit to lead South Africa in the ICC World Twenty20 tournament in the West Indies next month, but left-arm fast bowler Wayne Parnell was not included in the South African squad announced on Wednesday.

Easy win for Chennai

Murali Vijay struck a blistering 78 upfront and Suresh Raina chipped in with a crucial unbeaten 44 down the order as Chennai Super Kings beat Royal Challengers Bangalore by five wickets to keep alive their semifinal hopes in the Indian Premier League here on Wednesday.

Amol powers to next round

As expected, top seeded Amol Roy moved into the men's pre-quarterfinals of the Runner Group Independence Day Open Tennis Competition after winning his first round match at the National Tennis Complex in Ramna yesterday.

Cricket Centre beat Bewtha

Manikganj Cricket Centre registered a comfortable 96-run victory over Bewtha Bandhu Ekadash in the Khan Real Estate Second Division Cricket League at the Government Boys' High School playground yesterday.

SL pick rookie Chandimal for World T20

Sri Lanka on Wednesday picked uncapped batsman Dinesh Chandimal for next month's World Twenty20 tournament to be played in the Caribbean.

Business

Canadian company buys Shahriyar Fabric

Canadian T-shirt giant Gildan Activewear Inc yesterday wrapped up the acquisition of Shahriyar Fabric Industries Ltd, choosing Bangladesh as a base for manufacturing in Asia.

Economist digs deep into rich-poor gap

Renowned economist and researcher Prof Nurul Islam said yesterday an unusual hike in land prices, the culture of default loan with banks and massive tax evasion are widening the rich-poor gap in Bangladesh.

Higher GDP, low inflation on target

As investment rebounds, higher GDP growth and a low inflation rate for the next fiscal year is the target to be set by the government.

Power backup items galore

Technologies that offer power backup for long hours are becoming lucrative for both traders and buyers in Bangladesh because of a persistent power crisis.

Sick RMG units differ with govt decision on loan, interest payment

Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) yesterday differed with the government announcement about the payment of loan and interest by the sick apparel industries.

Negative US job report prompts recovery fears

An unexpected rise in private-sector job losses stoked concerns about the strength of the US economic recovery Wednesday, ahead of a key government labor report later this week.

Ride Bangladesh-Canada trade wave

The foreign minister yesterday asked businessmen to fully utilise the potential of the Canadian export market, as bilateral trade between Canada and Bangladesh is growing faster.

Bank shares flicker back into life

Bank shares, a bellwether on the stockmarket, snapped their weeklong bear-run yesterday, as investors took positions on expectations of profiting from the previous day fall in the sector.

BB roadshow in Rangpur

The roadshow of Bangladesh Bank (BB) with the slogan 'Journey to Development: Teknaf to Tentulia' began in Rangpur yesterday. Sonali Bank Ltd led the roadshow in the district town.

Indian exporters want strong rupee to be pegged

A sharp rise in the value of the rupee against the US dollar has made Indian exporters worried, and they want the government to step in and peg the fixed exchange rate, taking a cue from Bangladesh and China.

Gulf Air turns 60

Gulf Air, the national carrier of Bahrain, touched 60 years of operations on March 24, the airline said in a statement.

Now comes tough part for Bharti

Indian telecoms tycoon Sunil Bharti Mittal has finally achieved his dream of breaking into the African market with a 10.7-billion-dollar deal to buy Kuwait-based Zain's Africa assets.

How a national stock exchange helps

In our neighboring countries, national stock exchanges are surpassing the centralised stocks exchanges both in terms of market capitalisation and turnover and fostering a nationwide environment of wider investor participation and market efficiency. Time has possibly come to consider whether there is a need for developing a national stock exchange in Bangladesh too, which can help pave the way for a rapid development path for our capital market.

Corporate Briefs

CHITTAGONG VEGETABLE
Trading of the company's shares will be allowed only on the spot market and block/odd lot transactions will also be settled as per a spot settlement cycle from today to April 12. Trading will remain suspended on April 13, as book closure starts on April 15 for an EGM.

Geely to leapfrog into China with Volvo

Geely hopes to use its takeover of Volvo to crack China's fast-growing luxury car market and vault into global contention using the Swedish brand's cutting-edge technology, analysts say.

Oil rises

World oil prices struggled higher on Wednesday as traders awaited the publication of a widely-watched US energy reserves report before the Easter holiday weekend break.

Sony, Toshiba to sell liquid crystal display plants

As the volatile liquid crystal display industry continues to restructure after the global slump, Japanese electronics giants Sony and Toshiba said Wednesday they were selling LCD plants to rivals.

Eurozone unemployment hits record 10pc

Unemployment in the 16-nation eurozone hit a record 10 percent in February, official figures showed Wednesday, underlining that Europe's painful recovery from recession is failing to create jobs.

Turkish economy emerges from recession

Turkey emerged from a crippling recession with strong 6.0-percent growth in the fourth quarter, official data showed on Wednesday, supporting analysts' forecasts of similar growth this year.

Bank of Ireland seeks huge capital injection after big loss

Bank of Ireland said Wednesday that it was seeking to raise 2.7 billion euros of extra capital from investment banks, after posting a net loss for the nine months to December due to huge bad debts.

Metropolitan

Media should point out wrongdoings of govt to strengthen democracy

The media should point out the wrongdoings and faults of a government in order to strengthen democracy and also project the true history of the liberation war, President Zillur Rahman said yesterday.

NGO-run anti-poverty, education, healthcare projects inspiring

The programmes on poverty alleviation, education and health implemented by non-government organisations (NGOs) in Bangladesh are inspiring and imitable, said a visiting Australian human rights commissioner yesterday.

Interpol drive in May to arrest 73 Bangladeshis

International police agency Interpol is set to launch a simultaneous campaign in 188 countries in May to net 73 fugitive Bangladeshis, including six absconding killers of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, under a drive called 'Operation Infrared', 2010.

EU welcomes ratification of Rome Statute of Int'l Criminal Court

The European Union has welcomed Bangladesh's ratification of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

Inu's call to launch mass movement

Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal President Hasanul Haq Inu yesterday called upon the people to launch mass movement at every neighbourhood across the country in support of the trial of the war criminals.

Section 144 imposed in Bogra town

The local administration yesterday imposed section 144 at Titu auditorium and its adjoining area in Bogra town for an indefinite period from today as district unit Jamaat and Sector Commanders' Forum declared to organise separate programmes at the venue the same day.

Death anniversary

Today is the 39th death anniversary of liberation war martyrs engineer Fazlur Rahman, his younger brother Rafiqul Islam and his nephew Anwar Hossain, says a press release.

Campus violence won't be tolerated: PM

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said that her government will not allow any sort of campus disturbance for the sake of congenial educational atmosphere.

War crimes trial to be transparent: Dipu

Foreign Minister Dipu Moni yesterday said the government has international support in its efforts to bring the war criminals to book and it wants to ensure international standards of justice.

'Resist plot to foil trial of war criminals'

Communist Party of Bangladesh General Secretary Mujahidul Islam Selim yesterday called upon the countrymen to forge national unity to resist any conspiracy to foil the trial of war criminals.

'Use modern tech to reduce losses'

With the slogan, 'Easy access to information will ensure safety during disasters,' the National Disaster Preparedness Day was observed across the country yesterday.

Ensure equal opportunities

President Zillur Rahman yesterday called for ensuring equal opportunities for all citizens, taking public-private initiatives with a view to turning the country's huge manpower into human resources and removing disparity.

CU academic impasse enters third day

The academic activities at Chittagong University were hampered for the third consecutive day yesterday with Bangladesh Chhatra League continuing its agitation.

Indian singer Hariharan to perform in city today

Renowned Indian playback and ghazal singer, and one of the pioneers of Indian fusion music, Hariharan is now in Dhaka.

Mubasshar takes over as CAA president

Architect Mubasshar Hussain has taken the charge of Commonwealth Association of Architects (CAA) as its president for 2010-12 year term in Sri Lanka recently, says a press release.

Shahid, Shyamal president, gen secy of CUJ

Shahid Ul Alam and Nazim Uddin Shyamal were elected president and general secretary respectively in the biennial election to Chittagong Union of Journalists (CUJ) here yesterday.

Thai team calls on DU VC

A six-member team of the education ministry of Thailand called on Dhaka University Vice Chancellor Prof AAMS Arefin Siddique at the latter's office yesterday, says a press release.

Farroque gets bail

The High Court yesterday granted bail up to April 4 to Opposition Chief Whip Zainul Abdin Farroque and BNP lawmaker Shahid Uddin Chowdhury in a case filed against them for making 'derogatory remarks' about prime minister's son Sajeeb Wazed Joy.

'Govt trying to harass opposition'

BNP Standing Committee member Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain yesterday said the government is trying to harass the opposition politically in the name of war crimes trial.

Call to extend retirement age of all

Sramik Karmachari Oikya Parishad (SKOP) yesterday demanded extending the retirement age of all workers -- regardless of private and government industries --to 60.

EU hails ratification of Rome Statute

The European Union has welcomed Bangladesh's ratification of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

Govt creates an unemployed person in every house

BNP standing committee member Salauddin Quader Chowdhury yesterday said the government has created one unemployed person in every house in the country since it assumed power early last year.

'Raise awareness about TB'

Bangladesh stands sixth among 22 countries having highest tuberculosis (TB) patients in the world while 20 to 30 lakh people are facing deaths due to the disease.

National

Sericulture project in CHT bears all signs of neglect

Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) Sericulture Project saw no remarkable progress in last five years although a huge amount of government fund has been spent for the purpose.

Farmers cry for power, agitate in 2 districts

Farmers staged demonstrations in Chapainawabganj and Faridpur yesterday and the day before demanding smooth supply of electricity to keep irrigation pumps operational.

Rest two KHDC councillors quit in face of agitation

Khagrachhari Hill District Council (KHDC) has finally become 'BNP-Jamaat free' as the rest two councillors resigned yesterday in the face of local ruling party men's agitation against three councillors and chairman of the council.

Grabbing of temple lands in 2 dists sparks protests

People of Hindu community held separate programmes in Jessore and Madaripur town yesterday demanding recovery of temple lands from illegal occupiers and punishment to the criminals who injured devotees.

Schoolboy abducted in Chuadanga freed

Schoolboy Faruq Ahmed, abducted by a gang of criminal from Belgachi village under Almadanga upazila of Chuadanga district on Monday, was released Tuesday evening.

Businessman murdered

Kotwali police recovered the body of a businessman from the bathroom of his rented house in the city's Mendibag area Tuesday night.

PM to open pvt power plant

Prime minister Sheikh Hasina is scheduled to formally inaugurate a private power plant at Fenchuganj in Sylhet at 11:00 am on April 3.

Three housewives murdered allegedly for dowry

Three housewives were killed allegedly for dowry in Thakurgaon, Chapainawabganj and Sirajganj on Tuesday.

Four more sued in Bagerhat on war crime charges

A case was filed yesterday with a Bagerhat court against four people on charges of killing two siblings and raping three of their relatives during the liberation war in 1971.

15 hurt as rival BNP men clash in Kushtia

At least 15 people, including a policeman, were injured during a clash between two factions of BNP district unit yesterday.

UP chairman, aid stabbed to death

Two people, including a UP chairman, were killed in an attack by criminals at Rambhadrapur in Nababganj upazila Saturday night.

150 bullets recovered

Police recovered 150 bullets from a field at Topodhan in Sadar upazila yesterday morning. Abdus Samad, a farmer of the village found the bullets while digging the field. On information, Kotwali police went to the spot and seized the ammunition of Light Machine Gun (LMG) from a field at about 11:30 am and took those to the police station. Sub-inspector Noor Alam who seized the ammunition said they would examine the ammunition whether those were live or defunct. A general diary was lodged with Rangpur Kotwali police station.

BNP activist murdered

A rival group killed a BNP activist in the district on Tuesday night. The incident occurred at Teltupi village under Harinakundo upazila. The deceased was identified as Aslam Fakir of the village. Officer-in-charge (OC) Jahangir Alam of Harinakundo police station said, Aslam had been absconding for long. As he was coming home on Tuesday afternoon, his rival group hacked and beat him up on the way. He was rushed to Kushtia hospital where he succumbed to injuries at night.

Drug peddler gets life

A Chapainawabagnj court yesterday sentenced a drug peddler to life term imprisonment under the Narcotics Control Act. Convict Mamun alias Tota,22, is son of Sirazuddin of Matkata village under Godagari upazila in Rajshahi. District and Sessions Judge Anwar Hossain pronounced the verdict. The court also acquited Tozammel Haque of the same area of charges. According to the prosecution, police arrested Mamun and Tozammel from Jhilim bus stand along with 100 grams of heroin on January 26, 2007.

150 trees felled

Criminals on Tuesday night felled at least 150 mahogony trees at Ghoragacha and Binodpur villages under Harinakundo upazila. Azit Kumar of Binodpur village and Tota Mia of Ghoragacha village own the trees. Sohel Mia of Ghoragacha village said, hired criminals fell the trees because of previous enmity with Tota Mia. Azit Kumar said, he planted the mahogony trees five years ago. He also made similar complaint. Officer-in-charge (OC) of Harinakundo police station said, he is yet to get any official allegation in this regard.

5 held with arms, liquor

Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) jawans arrested five people with firearms and Indian liquor along Naokuchi border in Jhinaigati upazila on Tuesday night. A BDR team of 45 Rifles Battalion halted a private car and a motorbike in the border area at about 8:00pm and recovered 11 bottles of Indian liquor and a loaded pistol. They also arrested Shyamol Chandra Shaha, 38, engineer Lokhman Ali, 50, Abdul Halim, 50, Nur Alam Chowdhury, 40, and Alamgir Hossain, 40, in this connection. Two cases were filed against the arrested persons with local police station. They were produced before a judicial magistrate court yesterday noon. The court sent them to jail after hearing.

International

New suicide blasts kill 12 in Russia

Two suicide bombers including one impersonating a police officer killed at least 12 people and injured 18 others in the southern Russian province of Dagestan yesterday, officials said. Nine police officers were among the dead.

Obama wants tough Iran sanctions within 'weeks'

US President Barack Obama said Tuesday he wanted tough new UN sanctions imposed on Iran within "weeks" as visiting French President Nicolas Sarkozy blasted Tehran's "mad" nuclear race.

Serbia apologises for Srebrenica massacre

Serbian lawmakers issued an apology to the Bosnian Muslim victims of the 1995 Srebrenica massacre yesterday, ending years of denial in move seen as an important step on Belgrade's road to Europe.

US wants Jerusalem building freeze for just four months

The US wants a four-month Israeli building freeze in occupied east Jerusalem, one of a series of demands from Washington aimed at reigniting dormant peace talks, media reports said yesterday.

Fugitive Thaksin continues global wandering

From Dubai to Sweden and now Russia: It's been a busy travel week for Thailand's fugitive former leader Thaksin Shinawatra.

Missile strikes, clashes kill 36 in Pakistan

US missiles and clashes between Pakistani troops and militants killed up to 36 people, including five soldiers, as pre-dawn violence swept the tribal badlands on the Afghan border yesterday.

Bomb attack kills 13 in Afghan market

A bomb blast in a crowded market in southern Afghanistan killed 13 people and wounded dozens more yesterday in an area at the forefront of the US-led war against the Taliban.

100 Indian sailors seized by Somali pirates

Up to 100 Indian sailors have been captured by Somali pirates who seized seven or eight boats in one of their biggest raids yet, a shipping body told AFP Tuesday.

Mumbai attacks trial closes, verdict on May 3

The trial of a Pakistani accused of being in a 10-man team of gunmen who killed 166 people during a rampage through Mumbai in 2008 closed yesterday after a year of dramatic courtroom testimony.

Indians scale down in Afghanistan fearing more attacks

India has suspended medical aid and teaching programmes in Afghanistan, where Indian businesses and charities are slashing staff over fears they are increasingly targeted by militants.

Zardari planned murder of my father

Former Pakistan president Zulfikar Ali Bhutto's grand daughter, Fatima Bhutto, has charged 'uncle' President Asif Ali Zardari for orchestrating the murder of her father, Mir Murtaza Bhutto, saying the killers of her father are 'ruling the country at present'.

UN delays report on Zardari's behest

The United Nations (UN) has delayed publishing the report of its commission, which was set up to probe former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto's assassination, on President Asif Ali Zardari's request.

Maoists kill Congress leader in Jharkhand

The Maoists shot dead Congress leader Gobardhan Mahali in Jharkhand's East Singhbhum district to protest against Operation Green Hunt in the state.

Romania finds 50 Afghans hidden in vinegar tanker

Romanian border police caught 50 Afghan immigrants, including 15 children, attempting to illegally cross into Hungary hidden in a road tanker transporting vinegar, officials said yesterday.

Arts & Entertainment

In search of the Divine within

Recently a major concert "Baul 'n Beyond" was held at the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre in Dhaka. The event featured interpretations of Lalon songs. A group of baul from Kushtia along with the band Bangla, Indian troupe Taal Tantra and US band Jazmin performed at the concert. Rob Fakir, one of the foremost contemporary baul singers, led the Kushtia troupe.

“Clash of the Titans”: Gods, monsters Clash in 3D

Influenced almost as much by "The Lord of the Rings" as a 1981 namesake most notable for Ray Harryhausen's stop-motion effects, the upgrade of "Clash of the Titans" ratchets up the man vs. the gods quotient.

Life after Miles

It's been a while since Shafin Ahmed left the band Miles after being a member for 30 years. What is he up to these days? Let's find out:

Aparna Sen on bringing “The Japanese Wife” to the screen

“The Japanese Wife," directed by Aparna Sen, is an adaptation of Kunal Basu's novel of the same name. The bilingual movie (English and Hindi) was shot in both Japan and the Sunderbans of West Bengal.

Banglavision anniversary celebrated in Dinajpur

Anniversary of Banglavision, a private television channel, was celebrated in Dinajpur on Wednesday. Thousands, including children and indigenous people, flocked to a festive function, organised as part of the celebrations.

“Draupadi”: A story of our times

The lives of mythological character of Drapaudi and Maaya, a modern day woman, bear eerie resemblances in the recent play “Draupadi: We are so different now!”. Both have faced rejection because of their gender. Both know the bitter truth of injustice and humiliation at the hands of men. Both have searched for vengeance. Ultimately both garner the strength to move on and end being victims of their circumstances.

Profile of an accomplished dancer

Noted dancer Hassan Imam stepped into the dance firmament in 1965. He received his primary lessons from GA Mannan, one of the maestros in the field. Mannan had established the Nikkon Lalito Kala Academy in Shantinagar. The institute produced many noted dancers of the country. “I am greatly indebted to Mannan,” said Imam.

Woman power honoured

Three women from the district were honoured in Chuadanga for their contribution to society: Sufia Khatun Lata (for promoting self-employment), Sahida Khatun (for her role the field of literacy) and Rashida Hasnu Ara ( for women's development). The women received crests and certificates. The honours coincided with celebrations of 100-years of International Women's Day.

Awards for young poets and writers

Literary magazine Kali O Kolom and HSBC have taken an initiative to recognise young and talented poets and creative writers across the country since 2008. In such a perspective, the awards for the year 2009 are going to be announced tomorrow at the main auditorium of National Museum.

Shamogeet releases debut album

Musical troupe Shamogeet will release its debut album "Hawa" on April 3. The launching ceremony will be held in front of the Central Library of Dhaka University at 5pm. The album has been produced under the banner of Bahirana Audio Visual. G-Series will distribute it.

OP-ED

Militant outfits in Bangladesh

IT must surely be a cause for concern for all to read about not only the presence of terrorist outfits in Bangladesh, but also that they are here in large numbers. According to a report in this newspaper there are at least 15 militant groups in Bangladesh -- although we do not have an approximation of their size or their adherents.

Dumping the junk

IN its special four-page cover issue on March 24, The Daily Star (DS) pinpointed various dimensions of traffic traumas caused by unfit vehicles and reckless driving in the capital city. The stories showed how the reckless and careless driving of the public vehicles, most of which are unfit as per motor vehicles laws, was causing deaths to hundreds of pedestrians and maiming even a larger number of them every year, and how they were creating traffic jams enjoying "unbridled freedom to pick up and drop off passengers" anywhere they wished, and how they were polluting the air and creating serious health hazards for the people in the capital city.

A picture worth a thousand words

THE indigenous people of the Chittagong Hill Tracts are often stereotyped as the remnant or the residue of the primitive past. CHT is very much a part of sovereign Bangladesh. The indigenous population consists of less than one percent of the total population. By definition the indigenous ethnic groups are people who are referred to as "a politically underprivileged group who share a similar ethnic identity different from the nation in power."

Birangana or muktijoddha?

THE very idea of equality which sparked our liberation war was violated by a failure to recognise the women participants of the war. The women war victims did not receive the due honour from their families and society. Most of the families considered the "loss of chastity" a shameful act, and treated their victimised women unfairly. The inability to marry off their daughters created extra anxiety for many parents.

A forgotten legend?

DHIRENDRANATH Datta was a reputed lawyer of the Comilla District Bar, a patriotic political leader, a pioneer of the language movement, and a courageous and eloquent speaker.

Star Chittagong

Juvenile crimes on the rise

The increase in the incidence of juvenile delinquency in the port city of Chittagong has made the parents, guardians and conscious people wary of getting their teenage children involved in crimes.

UDC to help ensure planned growth of city

A highly powered Urban Development Committee (UDC) is now in place at Chittagong Development Authority (CDA) to help coordinate infrastructure development activities, introduce plan, control and develop traffic system for proper urbanisation.

The week that was

'Follow prophet to establish peace'
Speakers at a discussion on Saturday called to end racial discrimination following the ideal of Prophet Muhammad (SM) to help establish peace in the world.



The Daily Star

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