The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Sunday, August 24, 2014


News of: Monday, 12th of April, 2010

Front Page

Court's sanctity left all trampled

A group of pro-BNP lawyers yesterday created such an unprecedented chaos during the proceedings of a petition of Khaleda Zia in the High Court that two HC bench judges had to urge senior lawyers to "save" them and the image of the Supreme Court.

Top officials gobble up Milk Vita

A parliamentary sub-committee unearthed massive corruption and irregularities in state-owned Bangladesh Milk Producers Co-operatives Union Ltd (Milk Vita) and suggested taking stern actions against its corrupt officials.

First phase work to complete in 5yrs

The government has drawn up a plan to construct the first phase of the proposed Tk 50,000 crore Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib International Airport in next five years under build-own-operate-transfer (BOOT) basis.

House, flat owners explore solar answer

Home and flat owners are looking for small solar power systems to get relief from the persistent power crisis and save cost on fuel for running generators.

250 families in Pabna tortured

About 250 families of the Christian community in Chatmohar and Harirampur areas of Pabna district were subject to cruelty and torture of the wining party activists after the 8th parliamentary election in 2001.

City water crisis sparks protest

Vehicular movement on Mohakhali-Gulshan link road and Mohakhali Bazar road remained suspended for about an hour yesterday after angry locals blockaded the roads demanding uninterrupted water supply.

Pinky's stalker still at large

Six days into the grisly death of 16-year old Mariam Akhter Pinky by burning in Kishoreganj's Tarail, police had yet to arrest the girl's alleged stalker and killer Tabarak yesterday.

HC gets 17 new additional judges

Seventeen new additional judges were appointed to the High Court Division of the Supreme Court for two years yesterday.

'Laughing' in botanical hub after 12 years

A small band of Rufous-necked Laughingthrush has thrilled birdwatchers in the Botanical Garden at Mirpur recently. The birds briefly emerged out of thorn bush and rattan at the extreme end of the garden. They are shy birds of the eastern edge of Bangladesh and not expected to be seen in a crowded garden in Dhaka.

Jamaat fails to hold Ctg conference

Central Jamaat leaders had to leave the port city yesterday without holding a scheduled conference in the face of strong protests.

Saudi Arabia bins reports on tension

Saudi Arabia yesterday ruled out media speculations about "deterioration" of Dhaka-Riyadh ties over Bangladesh's initiatives to expose some Jamaat-e-Islami leaders to justice as part of a process to try perpetrators of crimes against humanity in 1971.

Hasina greets Khaleda

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has greeted Leader of the Opposition Khaleda Zia on the occasion of Bangla New Year 1417.

DB quizzes Bashundhara chairman

The Detective Branch yesterday quizzed Bashundhara Group Chairman Ahmed Akbar Sobhan alias Shah Alam in connection with the Dhaka City Corporation councillor Ahmed Hossain murder case.

2 outlaws killed in 'shootouts'

Two outlaws were killed in "shootouts" with police in Kushtia and Chuadanga early yesterday.

SC extends stay on tree-felling

The Supreme Court yesterday stayed for two more weeks tree felling in Khasia settlements of Nahar Tea Garden in Sreemangal of Moulvibazar while a timber trader has so far chopped over 4,000 trees with government permit.

Bangladesh to send 2 warships to Lebanon

Bangladesh becomes the first country in South Asia to send two warships -- BNS Osman and BNS Madhumati -- to the UN Peacekeeping Mission, United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL).

PMO high-ups visit 2 victims of molestation

High-ups of the Prime Minister's Office on behalf of the premier yesterday visited two molested children of the city's Uttarkhan and Savar, who are receiving treatment at Dhaka Medical College Hospital.

Fugitive top outlaw held in W Bengal

West Bengal police arrested a top Bangladeshi outlawed leader from Nadia district early yesterday.

Thakurgaon BDR mutiny verdict today

A special court of Bangladesh Rifles today delivers the verdict of a mutiny case against 51 BDR men of 20 Rifle Battalion in Thakurgaon.

Nuke, terror top Obama's talks with Manmohan

India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh yesterday began a four-day visit to the US to attend the 42-nation Nuclear Security Summit that will focus on nuclear security and his first bilateral meeting with President Barack Obama since they met in November last year.

Mirza Abbas' wife lands in jail, then taken to hospital

A Dhaka court yesterday sent Afroza Abbas, wife of former housing and public works minister Mirza Abbas, to jail in two tax evasion cases in which she was earlier sentenced to 16 years' imprisonment in absentia.

Hungarian voters expected to usher in right

Hungarians voted yesterday in a general election that looked likely to bring the right-wing Fidesz party back to power, while giving a far-right group its first ticket into parliament.

Four die as trawler sinks

At least four people including a child drowned last night as an overloaded trawler sank in Kalabador river of Mehendiganj upazila in Barisal.

Muggers snatch Tk 38 lakh from garment owner

A gang of muggers yesterday snatched Tk 38 lakh from a managing director of a garment factory at Pubail of the district.

Editorial

IGP's directive against tender violence

THE IGP's warning to his under command that their failure to check tender-related violence in future would make them liable for punishment is welcome news. He has instructed the police to go after anyone, irrespective of political affiliation, who attempts to create a law and order problem, particularly related with submission of tenders.

The death of a president

THE death of Polish President Lech Kaczynski, his wife and scores of senior Polish government officials in a plane crash on Saturday is a tragedy that has stunned not only the people of Poland but also people across the world. That the crash occurred even as the president and his team were on their way to mark the 70th anniversary of the massacre of 20,000 Polish soldiers in the Katyn forest by Soviet forces makes the tragedy doubly heart-rending. More important is the fact that the plane crash has left almost the entire Polish government bereft of its key figures. It is one of those tragic instances which, in hindsight, leave a good number of thoughts for people to mull over. Fundamental among these thoughts is whether it is wise for a large team of government figures, in any country, to travel together. The probability of disaster overtaking the entire team becomes very real. In the Polish case, a combination of weather conditions and an inability on the part of the authorities to consider the chances of a disaster has now led to unmitigated tragedy.

Sports

Rangers rule after glam opening

Naeem Islam sizzled on a balmy night to force a six-wicket win for Rajshahi Rangers over the Cyclones of Chittagong in the opening match of the National Cricket League (NCL) T20s at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur yesterday. Naeem's explosive innings was the only match to the spectacular pyrotechnics that took place earlier in the evening during the opening ceremony.

Wedding now in 'fatwa' tangle

Tennis star Sania Mirza's marriage with Pakistani cricketer Shoaib Malik has sparked another row with some religious scholars issuing a 'fatwa' or religious edict against their living and mingling freely even before the marriage is solemnised.

Barisal's small target

The Barisal Blazers are eagerly waiting to blaze in the National Cricket League T20s with their 'youthful but balanced side' after having set their sights on the last four in the latest version of the game.

No Indo-Pak series in near future: PCB

With the diplomatic ties between India and Pakistan remaining tense, the PCB has ruled out any bilateral cricket series between the two countries even on a neutral venue. Pakistan Cricket Board's Chief Operating Officer Wasim Bari said that there appeared no possibility of a bilateral series taking place soon.

Real left in a Messi

This time Lionel Messi scored only once and it was not a particularly special goal, yet it could prove as significant as the four against Arsenal. The architect of Barcelona's victory was the peerless Xavi Hernández but it was Messi's 40th goal of a spectacular season that set Barcelona on the way to victory in the match that was declared the title decider.

Sky Blues run riot

Defending champions Abahani consolidated their lead in the Bangladesh League when they thumped struggling Muktijoddha Sangsad 5-0 in their away match at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.

Nadal aims for historic 6th

Rafael Nadal starts a quest for tennis history here Monday when he takes aim at a sixth straight Monte Carlo Masters title.

MSC want to make it now

Title contenders Mohammedan Sporting Club take on Sonali Bank SC in the first semifinal of the Dhaka Bank Club Cup Hockey Tournament at the Maulana Bhasani National Hockey Stadium today.

Tiger stays in contention

Tiger Woods, who paid a heavy price for uncontrolled lust, struggled to control his emotions but blasted out curses on several bad shots while staying in contention Saturday at the 74th Masters.

Big win for Punjab

Irfan Pathan returned with a three-wicket haul as Kings XI Punjab put up clinical all-round performance to register a seven-wicket comprehensive victory over Delhi Daredevils in their Indian Premier League match here yesterday.

Bangladesh win battle of umps

Bangladesh Umpires XI recorded a nine-wicket win over Pakistan Umpires XI in an exhibition Twenty20 match at the Bangladesh Krira Shikkha Protisthan ground yesterday.

Young booters go to USA

Twelve under-16 footballers, six male and six female, leave Dhaka today for the United States where they will take part in football events, teambuilding, leadership activities as part of a cultural exchange program organised by the State Department of the United States. They will stay at Washington DC for ten days when they will also participate in cultural programs, sightseeing, visit historical places and participate in other sports such as baseball, La Crosse etc.

Two Essex players in Police probe

The ECB have confirmed that two Essex county cricketers are at the centre of a police investigation, following allegations of "match irregularities". With the investigation still underway, the ECB added that they would be making no comment on the matter, but quoted a statement they had received from Essex Police:

Niaz shares 2nd position

Grand Master Niaz Murshed shared second position along with five other players with 5.5 points after the end of the seventh round of the third Kuala Lampur Chess Championship yesterday. GM Ziaur Rahman has 4.5 points from seven games. In the seventh round, Niaz beat IM Khamrakulov Dzhurabek of Uzbekistan while Zia lost to IM Irwanto Saidikin of Indonesia. GM Hou Yifan of China is now the sole leader with six points.

Mumbai in semifinals

Mumbai Indians became the first team to ensure a semifinal berth as they rode on captain Sachin Tendulkar's prolonged purple patch to beat Rajasthan Royals by 37 runs at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium in Jaipur last night.

Hopes fade for MU

Manchester United's hopes of retaining the Premier League title suffered a major blow as the champions were held to a 0-0 draw by Blackburn on Sunday.

Villains get the Blues

Didier Drogba sent holders Chelsea on their way to a 3-0 win over top flight rivals Aston Villa in the FA Cup semifinal at Wembley on Saturday.

Table toppers battle to draw

Bayern Munich's seven matches in 21 days, including their epic Champions League win over Manchester United, caught up with them on Saturday as they laboured to a 1-1 draw with Bayer Leverkusen.

'We can write history'

Lionel Messi said the current Barcelona team could write more chapters in the club's history following their 2-0 win over Real Madrid in Saturday's 'El Clasico' at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Inter's frailties exposed

Inter Milan dropped two precious points after being held to a 2-2 draw at Fiorentina on Saturday and will lose top spot in Serie A should Roma win their home match against Atalanta on Sunday.

Watching WC is lesson for the day

School and college students in Argentina could be allowed to watch World Cup matches live while in the classroom in a measure aimed at cutting out truancy.

O'Neill's ire at Terry

Aston Villa manager Martin O'Neill accused Chelsea's John Terry of making a “horrendous” tackle which could have ended the career of James Milner, his England teammate.

Deschamps reveals no approach from FFF

Marseille coach Didier Deschamps said Sunday that he had not been contacted by the French Football Federation about taking over from Raymond Domenech after the World Cup.

A prodigy

Shezan Mahmood Pranto, student of class six of Dhaka Residential Model College, became undefeated champion in the chess event of the national children award competition. Pranto had qualified for the national level after coming through thana, zila and divisional level. He became champion in the national level beating participants from Jessore, Rangpur and Sylhet.

Wahid Murad passes away

Wahid Murad Rupom, former secretary of the Dhaka Metropolis Pioneer League Committee and founder president of Swadesh Samaj Kalyan Sangha, died of kidney diseases yesterday. He was 35.

Isinbayeva's indefinite break

Russia's two-time Olympic pole vault champion Yelena Isinbayeva announced on Saturday she is to take an indefinite break from the sport.

Business

Lafarge faces new hurdle

Cement maker Lafarge faces fresh conditions to resume mining in forest areas of the Indian state of Meghalaya to supply raw materials for its plant in Bangladesh.

Bangladesh, India chambers agree to speed up trade

The India-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IBCCI) and Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) yesterday agreed to speed up efforts to increase bilateral trade and investment between the two countries.

Warid, Citycell to share infrastructure

Warid and Citycell have teamed up to share infrastructure for mutual benefits.

Stocks end low on profit booking

Profit-taking in banking, non-bank, and energy and power stocks kept the stockmarket slightly lower on the opening day of the week.

Minister sees GDP growth at 6pc

Planning Minister AK Khandaker said yesterday the country is likely to achieve 6 percent GDP growth if there is no natural disaster.

Entrepreneurs talk investments with Danish team

A matchmaking event that was attended yesterday by local entrepreneurs and a group of the visiting Danish businesspeople, specialised in renewable energy, opened up a scope of investments in energy-starved Bangladesh.

Govt urged not to allow yarn import through Benapole

Spinning mill owners yesterday urged the government not to allow yarn import through Benapole land port to rein in smuggling and safeguard the domestic investment in primary textile sector.

More allocation sought for women empowerment

The government should enhance budgetary allocation for women to support their empowerment, speakers said at a seminar in Dhaka yesterday.

IFC spurs students on investment climate research

Bangladesh Investment Climate Fund (BICF) has organised a lecture in Dhaka on how to build universities' capacity to become sustainable centres for investment climate research and advocacy.

Economy in tatters, Kyrgyzstan awaits Russian aid

Its economy in ruins after a popular revolt last week, Kyrgyzstan's interim government on Sunday awaited news of financial aid from Moscow, following talks with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

New president for BEA

Bangladesh Economic Association (BEA) has elected Abul Barkat and Toufiq Ahmad Choudhury as its president and general secretary for the 2010-12 term, according to a press release.

Tourism fair starts Sept 30

The third Bangladesh International Travel and Tourism Fair, EBL BTTF 2010, will begin at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre on September 30, says a press release.

Seoul refuses NKorean summons over resort dispute

Seoul on Sunday rejected Pyongyang's demand that South Korean officials come to a North Korean resort where the communist regime is about to freeze South Korean assets, worsening bilateral ties.

CORPORATE BRIEFS

SHAHJALAL ISLAMI BANK
Credit Rating Information and Services Ltd (CRISL) said its rating committee announced the bank's surveillance rating as "AA" based on financials as on December 31, 2009.

Australian watchdog probes Rio Tinto

Australia's corporate watchdog is probing mining giant Rio Tinto after China jailed four staff for bribery and industrial espionage, the body's chief said Sunday, describing the inquiry as "routine".

Floating above the tides

Prithula Prosun was on edge when she was asked to submit a proposal for her master's thesis.

Risk of Japan going bankrupt is real, say analysts

Greece's debt problems may currently be in the spotlight but Japan is walking its own financial tightrope, analysts say, with a public debt mountain bigger than that of any other industrialised nation.

China and Taiwan boost cross-Strait tourism

China and Taiwan are to open tourist offices on each other's territory for the first time in 60 years amid fast warming relations between the two former bitter rivals, officials said Sunday.

EU to nail down terms of Greek loans

European governments were expected to nail down on Sunday the precise terms for emergency loans that could be given to debt-stricken Greece as part of an unprecedented bailout.

Saudi, Vietnam ink energy pacts

Oil giant Saudi Arabia and Vietnam inked pacts late Saturday that will pave the way for increased cooperation in the oil and gas sectors, including possible Saudi investment in Vietnamese refineries.

IMF chief plays down raising inflation targets

The head of the International Monetary Fund said Saturday it still believes in "low and stable inflation" despite a suggestion from its chief economist that targets could go higher.

Metropolitan

Navy to be developed as 3-dimensional force: PM

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday revealed the government's mega plan for building Bangladesh Navy as a deterrent, three-dimensional force by incorporating submarines, helicopters, missiles, new frigates and other necessary modern equipment and vessels.

Opposition out to protect war criminals: Hasina

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said the opposition's threat to the government is intended to protect the war criminals.

Lack of accountability blamed for sluggishness in work

Prime Minister's Adviser Alauddin Ahmed yesterday came down heavily on bureaucrats for their sluggishness in work, saying that files are being piled up in their offices and major portion of jobs remains unfinished, but none is held accountable.

Govt recommends withdrawal of 340 more cases

The government yesterday recommended withdrawal of 340 more cases filed against mostly political leaders during the army-backed caretaker government.

Husband beats wife for dowry

A cruel husband beat up his wife mercilessly and left her away at Mirpur, some 12 kilometre off their residence at Babubazar, in the city yesterday as she failed to fulfil his demand for dowry.

Ruta, syndicate polls today

Elections to the syndicate, deans' committee, academic council, finance committee, planning and development committee of Rajshahi University (RU) and RU Teachers Association (Ruta) will be held today.

Hearing of charge framing adjourned

A Dhaka court yesterday adjourned until May 25 the hearing of charge framing against detained former state minister for home Lutfozzaman Babar in a tax evasion case.

Gagarin Astro Festival 2010 begins today

The three-month Gagarin Astronomical Festival 2010 begins at the Russian Centre of Science and Culture in the city today with a view to attracting more people towards astronomy and disseminating the latest information among them.

President asks pvt universities not to commercialise education

President Zillur Rahman yesterday urged the private universities to provide education of international standards and not to commercialise the higher education.

UN keen to help conduct war crimes trial

The United Nations, if requested for, would provide all possible assistance to Bangladesh in conducting the war crimes trial.

250-bed cancer hospital to be built in city

Bangladesh Cancer Society will set up a 250-bed modern cancer hospital in the city, aiming to provide free treatment to 40 percent of its patients.

Grassroots-level programme of BNP ends tomorrow

The two-month grassroots-level programme of Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) ends tomorrow through holding a discussion of the party's Dhaka division unit in the city.

'Involve local govt to ensure quality healthcare'

Speakers at a workshop yesterday stressed the need for ensuring quality health service by involving the local government division and community people.

5 killed in road accidents

Five people were killed in separate road accidents in Narayanganj, Brahmanbaria and Manikganj yesterday.

Verdict on writ petitions against CHT agreement today

The High Court (HC) is scheduled to deliver the verdict today on the long pending writ petitions that challenged the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) peace agreement and its provisions.

106 HSC examinees expelled

A total of 106 examinees were expelled yesterday from different centres for adopting unfair means in the examination of HSC and its equivalent examinations under 10 education boards.

Farroque gets bail in defamation case

A Sylhet court yesterday granted bail to Opposition Chief Whip Zainul Abdin Farroque in a defamation case.

Bela Nobi passes away

Bela Nobi, noted women rights activist and one of the presidium members of Bangladesh Mahila Parishad, passed away at a city hospital on Saturday at the age of 74, says a press release.

Asian Buddhist Confce for Peace executives

DP Barua and Goutam Arindam Barua have been elected president and secretary general of Asian Buddhist Conference for Peace (ABCP), Bangladesh National Centre for the next four years in a meeting of ABCP at the National Press Club on Saturday, says a press release.

Health minister visits ICDDR,B

Health Minister Dr AFM Ruhal Haque yesterday visited the diarrhoea patients at the International Center for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (ICDDR, B) and said unsafe drinking water is one of the main reasons for the disease.

JCD faction burns effigies of its leaders

A rebel faction of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal, the student wing of BNP, burnt the effigies of its president and general secretary at Dhaka University yesterday and declared them unwanted on the campus.

DU students demand publication of results

The law students of Dhaka University yesterday formed a human chain and also vandalised pots of flower plants at the department demanding immediate publication of the results of their year-end examinations.

National

Agitation for power in several districts

Power subscribers yesterday ransacked Palli Bidyut office and assaulted resident engineer at Ujirpur upazila headquarters in Barisal.

PCJSS formally splits

'Deprived' leaders of Parbatya Chattagram Jana Sanghati Samiti (PCJSS) have formed a seven-member convening committee, terming Santu Larma-led central PCJSS committee as 'illegal, undemocratic and anti-party constitution'.

GBB Power Ltd defaulter again

Bogra-based private power generation company GBB Power Ltd has again kept unpaid over Tk Tk 3.72 crore bills for gas taken from Pashchimanchal Gas Company Limited (PGCL) during November 2009 to January this year.

Playmates kill boy over trifling issue

A group of schoolboys stabbed a playmate to death at Sunamganj district town on Saturday.

23 leaders of rival BNP factions held

Twenty-three leaders of two rival factions of BNP arrested on charge of their involvement in Saturday's clash were sent to jail hajat yesterday after being produced before the Chief Judicial Magistrate's Court.

Locals protest 'misdeeds' of a constable in Rajshahi

Locals of Motihar area in Rajshahi city on Saturday formed a human chain demanding action against a constable of Motihar police station for his alleged criminal acts and harassment to the people.

Punish real culprits, drop false charges against Prof Munir

Chittagong University Teachers Association (Cuta) leaders yesterday demanded withdrawal of 'false' charges against the former association president and punishment to those involved in murders of CU students Mohiuddin and Harun-or-Rashid.

Army chief in Aila-hit areas, sees repair of embankments

Army chief General Abdul Mobin Chowdhury yesterday visited the worst Aila-hit areas in Shyamnagar and Assassuni upazilas to see the reconstruction work of the breached embankments.

Opposition chief whip gets bail

Opposition chief whip Zainul Abdin Farroque yesterday secured bail in a defamation case filed against him with a local court.

Old man beaten to death, ten injured in Savar clash

An elderly man was beaten to death and 10 others were injured in an attack by a rival group over land dispute at Sardaganj in Sadar upazila yesterday morning.

Touchstone statue recovered

A touchtone statue worth Tk 1.50 crore was recovered from a pond at Kaligram village in Manda upazila on Saturday noon. Locals said, while re-excavating the pond in Nalpukuria area of the village two labourers found the statue of Lord Vishnu and tried to keep it secret. But locals took away the statue from them and handed it over to the members of local Jagarani Jubo Unnayan Samabaya Samity. Later, on information, police seized the statue weighing 135 kg.

Robbery in Satkhira

Robbers looted valuables worth Tk 15 lakh from a house in Sultanpur area of the district town early Saturday. Locals said a gang numbering 6/7 stormed into the house of Kazi Shahidul Islam at about 2:00am and took the house members hostage at gunpoint. They later looted Tk 2.5 lak in cash, 25 tolas of gold ornaments, Mobile phone sets and other valuables worth Tk 15 lakh. Police later held Sheikh Mamun and Billal Hossain following a case filed by Shahidul.

Youth stabbed to death

A young man was stabbed to death allegedly by his rival at Purbo Somalia village in Chatkhil upazila on Saturday evening. The deceased was identified as Zahir, 35, son of Shamsuddin of the village. Police quoting locals said there was a conflict between the families of Shamsuddin and Kalu Mia over digging of a disputed pond. The two families in the dispute agreed to go for arbitration in the evening. But Kalu Mia's son Suman refused to accept the decision of the arbitration. Coming out from the arbitration angry Suman attacked and stabbed Zahir indiscriminately leaving him critically injured. Zahir died at the local health complex

Housewife murdered

A housewife was beaten to death allegedly for dowry at Fathehpur village under Nabinagar upazila of the district yesterday. Victim Rina Begum, 22, was wife of Kamal Mia of the village. According to locals and police, in-laws of Rina were demanding one and a half tola of gold as dowry from her father. As her father refused to give it, she was often tortured by in-laws and husband. On the fateful day yesterday she was beaten by the in-laws mercilessly causing her instant death. Police went to the spot and recovered the body. A case was filed with Nabinagar police in this connection.

Letters

Aila hit people

On May 25, 2009, Cyclone Aila hit the coastal region of Bangladesh, directly affecting five million people. Cultivated land damaged in the area is around 96,617ha (out of 542,006ha cultivated in the area); the loss in production is of around 482,144 Mt that is worth BDT 6,776 million (FAO mission estimate).

Rural development

The state of rural development was not so deplorable in the remote past. It is clear that the villagers did not suffer from food crisis at least. But at present, villagers are failing to meet the bare necessities of life such as food, clothing, education, medicine, housing etc. It is because the population is increasing at a higher rate than production. Besides, villagers are not getting modern technology, which they can use to increase their production. Moreover, only 28% of the rural people are literate and the number of educational institutions is inadequate. For the village people technical and vocational education is very important. Of course, it is a matter of hope for us that the literacy rate is now 65%, according to a government survey. All the mills and factories are situated in towns and as the people of the villages are moving towards towns, rural development is becoming slower.

Power shortage

We appreciate the statement of the Honourable Finance Minister about the power shortage in the pre-budget meeting with the Honourable Chairmen of the Parliamentary committees recently. This indicates that the Honourable Finance Minister is sincere in his thoughts and honest in his action.

Climate change and livestock

Natural disasters caused by climate change have a tremendous impact on the livestock population of Bangladesh. Livestock suffers large-scale death in cyclonic storms. Prolonged floods can also cause such deaths. During droughts, livestock in Bangladesh do not suffer death, but lack of water increases their vulnerability to diseases.

Blame game

Blaming each other is the cultural heritage of the ill political practice witnessed by the people of Bangladesh over the years. The ongoing shortage of electricity and gas has created a looming crisis in the scorching heat of summer across the country.

Talk show

I was watching the prestigious talk show " Tritiyo Matra" on 01 April, 2010, I found there were two guests-- . Ferdous Akhter Wahida (ex-MP) and Aupu Ukil (MP), both of them blamed each other for their party's past and present activities likes poor performance, corruption and the war crimes issue.

Water cries

I congratulate Abdul Hannan for his illuminating piece. 'Tighten your water taps to fight the water crisis' published in your daily on Monday last (April 5). It graphically juxtaposes the fact that while the richest nation, America so jealously guards any wastage of water, we in Bangladesh, a rank poor nation do it with no qualms of conscience. What a bewildering irony! It is high time that the government enacts a water policy forthwith and puts it through urgently to prevent further wastage of this precious commodity--water. Perceptively, the brewing summer of discontent has much of its roots in water.

Understanding Big Bang!

According to Reuters report, published on March 31 in a local daily, scientists now have smashed sub-atomic (really small, or mathematically: smallX10 to the power minus infinity) particles of matter to re-enact the Big Bang, hopefully in a very small way!

Attestation

To apply for a job and so on, one needs academic certificates as well as photographs to be attested. Regrettably, one has to face harassment after going to a first class gazetted officer. Because most of the officers normally do not agree to attest our documents without a pre-familiarity. If one can manage a peon with tips for the purpose, then he gets the documents attested easily. It is an open secret that now almost all are using fake seals and signatures in respect of attestation. Earlier, much was written about it. But no initiative has yet been taken.

Gulf Air

Its first flight was in 1950. Till then it has been serving passengers from all over the world. Bangladeshi workers who go abroad & bring remittance to our economy are also well-acquainted with the Gulf Air. Congratulations, Gulf Air.

Unbearable load shedding

In our area Kalabagan, we are experiencing digital load shedding i.e. 2 hours X 5 = 10 hours a day out of 24 hours. Every day we are burning 20 litres of diesel to run the generator to supplement the power supply. It is understood that this diesel is not home grown, it is imported from abroad with foreign currency. Like us hundreds of city dwellers are doing the same thing. Had the government been serious, with these hard earned foreign currencies, it could have very well built the necessary infrastructure for power generation.

Health and progress

The concept of health-led progress is not a new-fangled one it surfaced at Alma-Ata and is also set up in the 1993 World Development Report. Health, seen as a form of human asset and not just an output from the growth process, deserves to join education as a key policy instrument for promoting the success of developing countries.

Child workers

This is in reference to your article on children working at balloon factories without any protection. In my opinion, people living in Bangladesh are very selfish and non-caring.

War crimes and Jamaat

I draw the attention of my professional colleagues to the statement Mr. Ali Ahsan Mojaheed made a few days ago on live television.

Students and politics

There is no doubt that most students of public universities abhor student & teacher politics. The top three public universities named DU, CU & RU are endangered by this dangerous practice. We have lost Abu Bakar, Mohiuddin, Faruque & Harun-ur-Rashid who were non-political students.

Census

It's already been a long time, that the government conducted a census in the country.

BNP reinventing Zia

At a meeting held at the Mahanagar Natya Mancha on March 27 some BNP leaders claimed, as reported in the media, that Ziaur Rahman was the first President of Bangladesh and that he had taken charge of the country after proclaiming independence over the radio and also that the country became independent under his leadership!

A sweet name

Recently Aktel has changed its name into Robi, a very sweet name. The name is very significant. Firstly, it is the synonym of Surya, the sun. Secondly, it is the name of a day i.e. Sunday. Thirdly, the name has a strong affinity with the name of world poet Tagore. Last but not the least, this name is cent percent Bangla. Thus the name is not only sweet but also royal.

US security measures

The major shake-up of air travel security measures announced by the US, will definitely help them in avoiding unnecessary wild goose chase. This will be easing the agony of innocent people from 14 countries, who were targeted by the previous measures. The current system was worked out long before but took time to come into effect.

Jewish reaction

I am appalled that Jewish groups around the world have reacted with shock after Pope Benedict's personal preacher compared attacks on the Church and pope over a sexual abuse scandal to "collective violence" against Jews.

International

Poland holds tribute for dead president

The body of Polish President Lech Kaczynski - who died along with 96 others when their plane crashed in Russia - has arrived back in Warsaw.

For Obama, a delicate balance on India, Pakistan

President Barack Obama's drive to build relations with both India and Pakistan faces a delicate test Sunday as he meets with the leaders of the nuclear-armed rivals to discuss security issues.

Thai clashes death toll climbs to 21

Defiant "Red Shirt" Thai protesters vowed yesterday to keep up their bid to topple the government, after the country's worst political violence in almost two decades left 21 dead and over 800 injured.

Karzai, McChrystal on the road again in show of unity

President Hamid Karzai and the head of US and Nato troops in Afghanistan yesterday made another public show of unity, to bolster the Afghan leader's position before key military offensives.

Iran to mass produce speedier centrifuges

Iran said it will soon begin mass production of centrifuges capable of enriching uranium, the most controversial part of its nuclear programme, three times faster than existing systems.

ISI still backs Taliban: US

US officials believe that Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence directorate (ISI) still supports the Taliban despite recent signals that the spy agency had started cracking down on the Islamist group, says the Washington Post.

No room for further setbacks, warns UN

Another failure in the quest for a treaty on climate change would cripple trust in the United Nations' ability to tackle global warming, the UN's climate point man warned as new talks ground into their final day yesterday.

Australia orders to probe Dubai hit

Australia's spy agencies are investigating the apparently fake passports linked to a Cold War-style hit in Dubai after a police probe failed to yield enough answers, the foreign minister said Sunday.

Sudan holds landmark polls

Sudanese across Africa's largest country voted yesterday in their first competitive elections in nearly a quarter century despite partial boycotts by the opposition and calls to delay the vote.

Israel to deport Palestinians under vague law

A new Israeli military policy could see tens of thousands of people living in the occupied West Bank without permits deported or facing criminal charges, Israel's Haaretz newspaper said on Sunday.

Italians held over Afghan 'plot'

Three Italian medical workers are among nine men arrested in Afghanistan in connection with an alleged plot to kill a provincial governor, officials say.

Russia furious over adopted boy sent back from US

Russia threatened to suspend all child adoptions by US families Friday after a 7-year-old boy adopted by a woman from Tennessee was sent alone on a one-way flight back to Moscow with a note saying he was violent and had severe psychological problems.

Kyrgyz revolt puts Russia in driver's seat

It was another popular uprising in another ex-Soviet republic against another entrenched leader. But when the dust settled this time it was Russian strongman Vladimir Putin in the driver's seat.

Bomb kills three Iraqis from US-allied militia

Three brothers who were members of the US-allied Sahwa "Sons of Iraq" militia that helped tame the nation's insurgency were killed when a roadside bomb engulfed their car, officials said yesterday.

TV debate on UK Election to start on Thursday

Britain's too close to call general election is set to come alive this week after a lacklustre start, with the three main party leaders going head-to-head in a TV debate and the launch of manifestos.

Maoists warn of more attacks

The CPI-Maoist yesterday warned of more Dantewada-type attacks on security forces if the Centre carried on with the anti-Maoist offensive even as it expressed sympathy for the families of the 76 troops killed and offered compensation.

Lanka to re-poll at violence-hit booths

Sri Lanka will rerun voting at 18 polling booths where last week's parliamentary election was affected by violence, officials said yesterday.

Pak troops kill 13 militants

Pakistani troops backed by helicopter gun ships Sunday killed 13 militants during clashes in a troubled tribal region close to the Afghan border, officials said.

Arts & Entertainment

Professor Siddiqui and Sarkar honoured

Eminent educationist Professor Zillur Rahman Siddiqui and noted essayist Jatin Sarkar recently received 'Shadhinota Puroshkar 2010' for their contribution to respective fields. To celebrate the awards, Dr. Fahmida Khatun and Tapan Bhattacharjee organised a felicitation programme for Professor Siddiqui and Sarkar on April 10 at Gulshan Club, Dhaka.

Marking the end of the Bengali year

For the second time Adorn Publication has arranged a book festival to mark 'Chaitra Shangkranti' (end of the current Bengali year) at Central Public Library premises, Shahbagh. Starting from April 1, the festival will go on till the last day of Bengali year 1416 (April 13).

National Film Award winners’ reactions

National Film Awards for the year 2008 were announced on February 11. An eleven-member jury, chaired by the additional secretary to the Ministry of Information, selected the winners for 24 awards in 23 categories. Young filmmaker Murad Parvez's "Chandragrahan" bagged the best film award.

Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington, DC

Every year US capital Washington, DC welcomes the arrival of spring with the two-week Cherry Blossom Festival. The event started on March 28th and ends today.

Gearing up for Pahela Baishakh

With Pahela Baishakh only a few days away, the children of villages and city are busy making masks and festoons. They will take part in the rally wearing masks and carrying festoons on the first day of the Bangla year.

OP-ED

Whither law and order?

IN the past, the government and the media used to express a lot of concern about the downward slide in the law and order situation. Of late, though the expression of such concerns is fewer in number, reports in the media on violence in all its forms is rather on the rise.

The key to defeating Islamic extremism

A CROSS-PARTY committee of MPs has just finished a six-month investigation into the government's anti-radicalisation programme.

Two-way traffic

THE government has set an ambitious revenue growth rate of 20 percent for the next three fiscal years. It's undoubtedly true that without collecting local resources in sizeable amount, the development of a country will always remain a far-fetched dream. Such an initiative will definitely lead to the exclusion of Bangladesh's name from the list of LDCs.

Arabs fail to unite

THE 22nd summit of the League of Arab States was held in the Libyan coastal city of Sirte on March 28-29. The meeting came on the heels of the breakdown of the much-hyped US-mediated proximity talks between the Palestinians and Israel, scheduled to have started in mid-March. The proximity talks could not take off because Israel announced that it would build 1,600 new Jewish homes in East Jerusalem, the future capital of the state of Palestine. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas declined to talk unless the Israelis rescind the decision.

Localising power

DEMOCRACY is no doubt the most favoured system the world over. Democracy, as we know, stands for majority rule, equality, and uniformity in treatment of the people who elect their rulers through universal suffrage. As a general rule, central the government is at the helm of a country and its inhabitants. But, in reality, it is next to impossible for a central government to ensure equal and equitable development of all areas of a country.


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