The Daily Star

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Thursday, October 2, 2014


News of: Saturday, 29th of May, 2010

Front Page

Indian train crash kills 80

At least 80 passengers were killed and 200 injured as a train derailed early yesterday in Midnapore district of West Bengal, India allegedly due to an action of sabotage by Maoists.

Public-pvt partnership mulled for coal mining

The government will take a decision within this year on floating tender for developing an open pit mine in one part of the existing underground coalmine in Barapukuria, says the prime minister's energy adviser Towfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury.

Attack on Pak Ahmadi mosques kills 80

Gunmen wearing suicide vests stormed two Pakistani mosques belonging to a minority sect in Lahore, bringing carnage yesterday prayers and killing around 80 people, officials said.

Culprits hardly get punished

Inadequate and lack of comprehensive laws allow most drivers responsible for traffic accidents, and the owners of automobiles who employ them get away unpunished.

Musa's reception in Kathmandu today

On the International Everest Day, Bangladesh Embassy in Nepal today will host a rapturous reception for Musa Ibrahim who conquered Mount Everest as the first Bangladeshi.

No move to catch the killer driver

Neither police nor the owning company of the killer bus, that took the life of Buet freshman Samrat on Thursday, seem to have any care for putting the reckless driver and his helper behind bars, and for compensating the victim's family.

Hardliners take over JMB

JMB chief Saidur Rahman himself is worried that hardliners who have taken control of banned Islamist outfit Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh will be more destructive in his absence as chief.

Campaign kicks off formally

The mayoral candidates of the two major political parties formally started their election campaign for the Chittagong City Corporation polls yesterday.

Threat, extortion in the name of ACC officials

The gang extorting under the name of Anti-Corruption Commission has finally got the anti-graft body on its tail, as this time it demanded money right from an acquaintance of the ACC chairman.

New faces lobbying for key positions

A number of new faces and controversial leaders are lobbying for crucial posts in the next committee for BNP Dhaka city unit.

Major highways to have separate lanes

To curb road accidents the communications ministry has planned to construct by-lanes for slow-moving vehicles along the busy highways to ensure smooth movement on the fast lane.

Everest hero to return home June 1

Family members and a sponsor have arranged the heroic return of Musa Ibrahim, the first ever Everest Conqueror from Bangladesh, by a special flight on June 1 to his homeland where people are eagerly waiting for him, the pride of the country.

Accomplices of Khokon still untraced

Police are yet to identify the accomplices of Khokon even after three days of his grisly attack on Aleya on her refusal to marry him.

AL men free railway land from illegal occupancy

A group of ruling party men demolished around 50 illegal establishments on a piece of railway land in Alamdanga upazila of Chuadanga Thursday afternoon.

Tigers make bright start

Bangladesh fought back on the second day of the first Test against England riding on an 88-run opening stand between Tamim Iqbal and Imrul Kayes after Shahadat Hossain's five-wicket haul at Lord's in London yesterday.

Buet students' protest on

Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet) students continued their demonstrations yesterday, by blocking roads on the campus, in protest against the death of the fresher, Khandaker Khanjahan Samrat.

Bill soon to restore '72 constitution

The government would soon place a bill in parliament to restore the original constitution of 1972, said LGRD Minister Syed Ashraful Islam yesterday.

Report blames DMP, Rab for controversy

The monitoring committee of the police headquarters has held Rapid Action Battalion and Dhaka Metropolitan Police responsible for the controversy over the arrests for the murder of sub-inspector Goutam Roy.

4 poachers held with deerskins

Four poachers were arrested with 17 deerskins in their possession by Rapid Action Battalion members from Bazaar area in Sadar upazila early yesterday.

Criminals throw acid on a family

Three members of family, including a woman and her three-year-old child, suffered burn injuries in their sleep when miscreants threw acid on them here early hours yesterday.

Jamaat men assault UNO in Bogra

A group of Jamaat activists assaulted Upazila Nirbahi Officer Abdus Samad for imposing section 144 over the meeting scheduled to be held at Fultala Madrasa field under Shajahanpur upazila of the district yesterday.

Mob beat robber to death

An alleged robber was killed and five others were injured in a mob beating at Raipur village under Tala upazila of the district on Thursday night.

Editorial

A most tragic death

WE are deeply saddened by the tragic death of Khandaker Khanjahan Samrat on Thursday. The heart-rending manner of the BUET student's death is a reminder once more of the menace which roads and bad drivers have become. We have repeatedly spoken of what must be done to ensure security of life on our roads. With a rapidly increasing density of population in the urban areas, it is only natural that the number of vehicles on the roads will also go up. Unfortunately, such factors have not been complemented by measures towards improved road safety. Conservative estimates alone place the annual number of deaths from road accidents in the country at more than four thousand. The figure could certainly be a lot higher. One can of course argue that accidents can and do happen everywhere. But what makes matters rather different in Bangladesh is the quality of drivers behind the wheels here, especially on public transport.

The new ADP

OF the 910 development projects to be taken up in the freshly announced Annual Development Programme (ADP) for the fiscal 2010-11, 816, that is, about 90 per cent have been carried over from the previous year's ADP. But in the previous fiscal, as the secretary of the planning division admitted, only 60 per cent of the development projects could be implemented. Even then, the government has made an ambitious allocation for the next fiscal's ADP at Tk 81.67 billion.

Sports

Tamim leads the fightback

Tamim Iqbal's typically dashing 42 not out led a Bangladesh counter-attack on the second day of the first Test against England at Lord's here on Friday.

3-star Mezbah

Mezbah Ahmed stole the show on the opening day, winning three gold medals in the 26th National (Age-Group) Athletics Championship at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.

Messi fears England

Argentina forward Lionel Messi believes England are among the leading contenders to lift the FIFA World Cup starting in South Africa next month.

Penalties of fame

This was, in truth, a poor World Cup. It's a saying among Dutch football fans that poor quality tournaments are always won by the Germans and, while Dutch-German enmity ought to be borne in mind, this tournament most definitely added weight to the notion.West Germany, soon to become plain old Germany after reunification, hit the ground running in the group stages with a 4-1 thrashing of Yugoslavia and a 5-1 thumping of the United Arab Emirates. Lothar Matthäus had been released from his marking role of 1986 and was leading the attacking charge. He grabbed three goals in those first two games, setting out his stall for a finals of immense personal achievement.

India lose to Zim

This wasn't really an upset. Zimbabwe were the stronger side of the two, which showed in the assured manner of a tall chase, set up by fliers from Brendan Taylor and Hamilton Masakadza and finished off with 10 balls to spare by a cool-on-debut Charles Ervine. The return of high-profile cricket to Zimbabwe put smiles on the faces of a spirited crowd, built mostly of school children, as they meticulously beat India for the first time in eight years. A weakened India side's only creditable spell came when Rohit Sharma scored 69 off the last 36 balls he faced to score his maiden ODI century and give India a fighting total on a flat track.

Imran votes for Afridi

Pakistan's legendary former captain Imran Khan spoke out in support of Shahid Afridi on Friday, saying the all-rounder should be given a long innings to stabilise a team hit by controversy.

Rainy parade for Serena, Henin

Top seed Serena Williams and four-time champion Justine Henin cruised into the French Open third round on Friday, as a packed women's schedule swollen by rain delays on the previous two days began.

Nadal, Federer shine on

French Open heavyweights Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal lifted the French Open gloom on Friday with the Spanish claycourt king setting up a fourth Roland Garros clash in five years with Lleyton Hewitt.

Bolt misses Johnson mark

Jamaica's former 100 metres world record holder Asafa Powell ran the fastest time over the distance this season here on Thursday in a sparkling 9.83 seconds.

Local Snippets

FM Mohammad Abdul Malek and FM Syed Mahfuzur Rahman Emon are sharing the lead after ninth round of the Six Seasons International Chess tournament at the Narayanganj Club Limited convention hall yesterday.

Loew's Hungary test

Germany prepare for life without captain Michael Ballack when they face Hungary in Budapest on Saturday in their penultimate World Cup warm-up.

Gerrard fit to train

England midfielder Steven Gerrard has eased fears over his fitness for the World Cup after suffering an injury scare in training.

Dunga demands unity

Brazil coach Dunga was upbeat as he faced the media for the first time since the five-time World Cup winners arrived in South Africa early on Thursday.

Buffon not confident

Italy and Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon on Thursday played down the world champions' chances of retaining their title in South Africa.

Inter, Real reach deal on Jose

Inter Milan and Real Madrid have come to an agreement for the transfer of coach Jose Mourinho, Italian press reported on Friday although the Italian club insisted nothing was official.

Brazil, Spain likely to win

If Swiss mathematician Roger Kaufmann's calculations are anything to go by, it looks like Spain and Brazil are most likely to meet each other at the finals of the World Cup.

Olsen names WC squad

Denmark coach Morten Olsen on Friday unveiled a 23-man squad that will meet the Netherlands, Cameroon and Japan in group E of the World Cup, the Danish football federation announced.

France will host Euro 2016

France were named as hosts of Euro 2016 by UEFA president Michel Platini here on Friday.

No tweeting for Spain

Spanish players at the World Cup will have to give up social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook during the tournament as coaching staff consider them an unnecessary distraction.

Colombian team robbed

Thieves stole around 2,000 dollars in cash from the hotel rooms of Colombia's World Cup squad in an embarrassment for organisers ahead of the showpiece tournament in South Africa, newspapers reported Friday.

Madan Mohan Sylhet champs

Madan Mohan College prevailed in a penalty shootout against Jalalabad Cantonment Public College, to be Sylhet divisional champions of the inter-college Clear Men Confidence Cup at the local stadium yesterday.

Italy to rely on catenaccio

The country that gave the famous catenaccio (door-bolt) tactics to the world will be staying true to their roots in South Africa.

Shakil picks up second IM norm

FM Abu Sufian Shakil of Biman secured his second International Master norm from 2nd SCS International Open Grandmaster Chess Tournament after end of the ninth round in Bhubaneswar, India yesterday.

Sr Div football

Victoria SC returned to winning ways with a come-from-behind 2-1 win over Purbachal Parishad in the Basundhara Senior Division Football League match at Birshreshtha Shaheed Mostafa Kamal Stadium yesterday.

Athletic turf damaged

The athletic turf at the Bangabandhu National Stadium was slightly damaged due to the pressure of iron pipes that were kept on the turf.

Yousuf not coming back

Mohammad Yousuf has closed the door on the prospect of coming out of retirement for Pakistan's upcoming tour of England, saying he was still disappointed with the way he was treated by the PCB.

Trott in Lord's 200-club

Jonathan Trott became only the seventh England batsman to score a Test double century at Lord's when he reached the landmark against Bangladesh on the second day of the first Test here on Friday.

Metropolitan

Special exams to recruit quality teachers on cards

The government is introducing a special registration examination in order to appoint quality teachers in primary level of madrasa education.

Atiur blasts BBS estimate on agri growth

Bangladesh Bank Governor Atiur Rahman yesterday criticised an estimate of the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) that the growth in agriculture declined by almost half in the current fiscal year.

Villagers eagerly wait for Musa's return

Villagers are now relieved to know that Musa Ibrahim, an illustrious son of their village who has brought glory to the country by conquering the Mount Everest on May 23, has safely come down to plains.

Blame game over 56 fake headmasters

Dividing into two groups, top officials at the Secondary Teachers Training Institute in Rajshahi blamed each other for wrongdoings in selecting 56 fake headmasters for a training programme.

Agriculture to get highest priority in budget: Muhith

Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith said the agriculture would get highest priority in the upcoming budget side by side with increasing subsidy to the sector.

Vitamin A Plus Campaign today

The National Vitamin A Plus Campaign-2010 will be held across the country today with a view to preventing childhood blindness, reducing child mortality rate and strengthening immunity.

HC bar on holding FFs' dist, UZ unit polls

The High Court (HC) in a verdict on Wednesday restricted holding elections to district and upazila units of Muktijoddha Sangsad Command Council (MSCC) on June 26.

'Cadaveric organ transplant soon'

In a major breakthrough in the country's medical science, Bangladeshi doctors are going to start first-ever cadaveric organ transplantation soon.

'Introduce waste removal tax'

Factories that has been producing waste and polluting the environment should be charged for recycling and management of waste, speakers at a roundtable said yesterday.

New policy to bring major change to education sector

Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid on Thursday said the government would implement the draft education policy for bringing a major change to the education sector.

Hand over plots immediately

Concord Rajdhani Prokalpa Plot Owners' Welfare Association at a rally yesterday demanded immediate handover of their plots in Concord Rajdhani Prokalpa at Jatrabari in the city.

Allegation of extortion against Khulna JP leader

Project Director of Destiny Group Nurul Huda lodged an FIR accusing Khulna city Jatiya Party President Abdul Gaffar Biswas and his son Shibli Biswas of demanding Tk 10 lakh as toll from the Destiny Group.

3 die in Narsingdi road crashes

At least three people were killed and seven others injured in separate road accidents in Belabo and Shibpur upazilas in Narsingdi yesterday.

Elderly patient succumbs to injuries

Abdul Haque, the elderly patient who was the centre of the feud between an attendant and intern doctors leading to the latter's strike at Rajshahi Medical College and Hospital (RMCH), succumbed to his injuries on Thursday.

International

Nepal's leaders battle to avert political crisis

Nepal's main party leaders were locked in talks yesterday to try and avert a political crisis with parliament's term due to expire at midnight, leaving the country without a functioning legislature.

Death and desperation at wrecked train site

"Please help. My daughter, I can't find her," begged Mamoni Bagh, grabbing a harried rescue worker near the mangled wreck of the train carriage she had been comfortably sleeping in hours before.

Uncertain future awaits Pakistanis in face of constitutional crises

The ongoing tussle between the Pakistan Supreme Court and the federal government is likely to add to the feeling of uncertainty prevailing in the country in coming months as both key institutions are on the collision course over constitutional affairs.

US, Japan agree to keep Marine air base on Okinawa

Washington and Tokyo agreed yesterday to keep a contentious US Marine base in Okinawa, with Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama highlighting the importance of the Japanese-American security alliance amid rising tension on the nearby Korean peninsula.

US toll passes 1,000 deaths in Afghanistan war

The American military death toll in Afghanistan surpassed 1,000 at a time when President Barack Obama's strategy to turn back the Taliban is facing its greatest test -- an ambitious campaign to win over a disgruntled population in the insurgents' southern heartland.

China to 'defend no one' on ship sinking

China told South Korea yesterday that it will not defend whoever it determines was responsible for the sinking of a South Korean warship that killed 46 sailors, the South Korean government said.

Australia takes Japan to court over whaling

Australia said yesterday it will challenge Japan's whale hunting in the Antarctic at the International Court of Justice, a major legal escalation in its campaign to ban the practice despite Tokyo's insistence on the right to so-called scientific whaling.

Maoist attackS in India 2005-2010

2005
Sept 4: Twenty-four paramilitary soldiers die in a blast triggered by suspected Maoists in Chhattisgarh.

Pigeon held in India on suspicion of spying for Pakistan

Indian police are holding a pigeon under armed guard after it was caught on an alleged spying mission for arch rivals and neighbours Pakistan, media reported yesterday.

Afghan forces battle militants near eastern border

Afghan forces battled militants in a remote region near the Pakistan border for a sixth day yesterday, and officials were trying to confirm reports that a key Pakistani Taliban leader was killed in the fighting.

Sri Lanka president rejects foreign war crimes probe

Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapakse has rejected international calls for a war crimes probe into the final offensive against Tamil Tiger rebels last year.

Obama visits Louisiana to assess largest US spill ever

President Barack Obama heads to the Gulf coast yesterday to assert control over the largest oil spill in US history as energy giant BP Plc battles deep on the sea floor to plug its gushing oil well.

Another held in New York Times Square bomb case

A Pakistani official says another man has been detained in connection with the main suspect in the Times Square attempted car bombing.

Roger Waters takes The Wall back on road

Former Pink Floyd frontman Roger Waters has announced plans to take his cult rock opera "The Wall" around Europe and the United States, three decades after it was originally staged.

North Korea accuses South of faking warship sinking

North Korea's powerful National Defence Commission accused South Korea yesterday of faking the sinking of a warship for which Pyongyang has been blamed and warned that the Korean peninsula was heading to "the brink of war."

Arts & Entertainment

Breaking the confines of social discrimination

A fortnight-long installation exhibition, titled “Khachar Bhitor Auchin Wrishi” is on at the National Art Gallery, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy. Jointly organised by the NGO Parittran and non-profit organisation Di+, the exhibition began on May 25.

An enchantress casts her spell

People started pouring in Bangabandhu International Conference Centre, Dhaka before 5pm on May 27. Both floors of the Hall of Fame were getting packed. Dhakaiites were eagerly waiting for a Bollywood nightingale to take the stage. There was added enthusiasm however; this particular 'Bollywood Sensation' is Bengali.

Recognising emerging artists

The Faculty of Fine Arts (FFA), Dhaka University holds an annual art exhibition involving students of the institute. At present, the institute has about 700 students and 52 teachers. This year's show features 300 artworks. The ongoing display involves students from drawing and painting, printmaking, graphic design, sculpture, oriental art, ceramic, crafts and art history departments.

DeWyze triumphs over Bowersox on “American Idol”

Lee DeWyze, a paint store clerk who overcame his shyness to impress “American Idol” judges and viewers with his spirit and soulful voice, triumphed Wednesday over bluesy musician Crystal Bowersox in the contest's ninth season.

Documentary on Nilufar Yasmin

Bengal Foundation has recently released a documentary featuring the life and works of noted singer Nilufar Yasmin. Titled “Shurer Swajan”, DVD of the documentary is now available in the market.

“Titas Ekti Nadir Naam” on Channel i today

Channel i will air Ritwik Ghatak's “Titas Ekti Nadir Naam” today at 2:30 pm. The film narrates the lives of fishermen who eke out a living from an unpredictable river that either dries up, or wreaks havoc with angry floods and communities that fall prey to modernisation, avaricious outsiders and political conflict.

Two-day dance festival begins today in Bogra

A two-day dance festival begins today at Shahid Titu Auditorium in Bogra town. Bogra-based Cultural organisation Amra Ka' Jon Shilpi Gosthi organised the festival. According to the organizers, twelve teams from different districts, including Dhaka, are taking part in the fstival.

DS Café

Today DS Café will have actress Aupee Karim take your calls at The Daily Star office. Readers will have the opportunity to ask Aupee whatever they want to know. Call 8126155 today, between 12 and 1 pm, to speak to Aupee!!!

OP-ED

The repine at requisition

The requisition of vehicles by the Dhaka Metropolitan Police, supposedly in public interest, has attracted wide media attention and in the related transaction we have seen admirable judicial activism by the apex court. The High Court, on 25th May last issued a suo moto rule asking the police authorities to submit to it within seven days a report on why they requisition vehicles in the capital.

Can't afford to fail again

The difference between a statesman and a politician is that the first looks at the future while the second remains stuck in the present. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh shows such a streak at times and jettisons the deadening hand of politics. His statement at his maiden press conference to have "good ties with Pakistan" indicates his determination to come to terms with the sub-continental realities. A hostile neighbour is an irritant, which you can ignore only at your peril.

Is n-plant answer to electricity crisis?

RECENTLY, there has been renewed interest in nuclear power in Bangladesh. This is understandable in view of the electricity crisis the country faces. An agreement has been signed with Russia for a 1,000 MWe plant. A roundtable on the issue was organised by The Daily Star, which also wrote an editorial on it. Others have commented on it too.

Regional cooperation for development

AN established opinion in the economic and political-economic circles around the world, substantiated by worldwide practice, is that regional economic cooperation and its higher form, economic integration, has become a major contributing factor of development in the individual countries.

Entrepreneurship needs a boost

MUCH of the country's fast growing population is without job or business. Creation of job opportunities appears to be a remote possibility. The Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics

Environment

Impact on water supply and sanitation

BANGLADESH is exposed as one of the most vulnerable countries in terms of adverse impacts of climate change due to its geographical location, hydrological influence of monsoon and regional flow patterns, high rainfall during monsoon while little in the dry season, extreme temperature with scanty rainfall, saline water intrusion, catastrophic natural disasters, etc.

Biodiversity for development and poverty alleviation

DEVELOPMENT processes and biodiversity are somehow interlinked (McNeely, 2002). Ecosystem services can shape the development paths of a country, region, or locality e.g. whether it chooses to pursue agriculture, timber production, fishing, tourism or any combination of these or other productive sectors. The world economy and national and sub-national economies are largely dependent on biodiversity. Many developing countries rely on the export of natural resources such as agricultural commodities, raw materials and ecotourism services. In developing countries biodiversity, the natural capital, is estimated to be a quarter of total wealth as compared to 13% in middle income countries and 2% in high income OECD countries.

Contribution to environment, economy and food security

GENETICALLY Modified (GM) foods are derived from genetically modified organisms. Genetic modification involves the insertion or deletion of genes. GM crops are also known as biotech crops. The first commercially grown genetically modified crop is tomato (1994). Currently, there is a number of genetically modified food species. Some biotech crops alongwith their traits are: soyabean (herbicides tolerance, oil content), cotton (insect resistance), maize (herbicides, insects), canola (herbicides, fertility restored, oil content), rice (herbicides, insects, vitamin A, B1), wheat (herbicides), potato (insects and virus resistance), tomato and melon (delayed ripening), papaya, squash, sweet pepper and plum (virus resistance), linseed, sugar beets and alfalafa (herbicides tolerance), sugarcane (insecticides, high-sucrose), rose, petunia and carnation (modified flower colour), tobacco (herbicides tolerance, nicotine reduction).

Literature

“I belong to the world . . .”

Such goes the strapping spirit and confidence of a poet: a poet of the Bengalis, Bangladesh, and the world as well, a poet who was a patriot, composer and a myriad minded writer. Nazrul once said, “Even though I was born in this country (Bengal), in this society, I don't belong to just this locale. I belong to the world”. He was by nature and conviction a people's poet. His work, full of vivacity, brought a new note of robustness in Bengali literature. He was crowned the 'rebel poet' in 1972 as the National Poet of Bangladesh.

One Chinese New Year in Boston Chinatown

The old man was crossing the intersection at a point where a single shabby road jutted into a long asphalt thoroughfare, thereby making the whole configuration appear as a giant “T”. He had succeeded in crossing from one side of the interloping street to the other when…well, reader, read on.

Images of society

The following article is a translation of a section from Qazi Motahar Hossain's Shomaj Chitro as it appears in Qazi Motahar Hossain Rochonaboli, Tritio Khondo, published by Bangla Academy (1992).

Star Health

Childhood hypertension, a growing concern

Blood pressure is no longer an adult entity. One may suffer from high blood pressure or hypertension at any age. One may account such illness due to the complications of certain diseases, whereas another group may acquire hypertension just for their changing lifestyle. The consequence of such flunky habit is obesity. Sedentary lifestyle including remote control electronics, escalator, sports car, junk foods — all may be the blessings of modern era but at the same time denounced the young frantic generation with unhealthy state. Obesity and heart disease just go side by side.

Stepping up efforts to save 23,000 mothers

Despite significant progress in decreasing poverty gap, increasing primary school enrollment with attaining gender parity, reducing child and infant morality rates over the past three decades, the maternal mortality rate (MMR) in Bangladesh is still one of the highest rates in the world.

FESS: Most advanced treatment for sinusitis

Sinusitis, an inflammation of sinus and nasal passage is increasing among the population by and by due to environmental pollution. Until recently, along with medication, various ablative surgeries were being performed to eradicate sinus pathology. But these surgeries have several complications that distort the nasal physiology and drainage of the sinuses. Functional Endoscopic Sinus Surgery (FESS) is the most advanced method in the treatment of sinusitis that overcomes the obstacles and has good patient compliance.

Breast-fed babies less feverish after immunisation

Breastfeeding may protect babies from post-vaccine fevers, according to a new study in the journal Pediatrics.

Common diabetes drug linked to vitamin deficiency

Patients treated over long periods with metformin, a common drug for diabetes, are at risk of developing vitamin B12 deficiency which is also likely to get worse over time, according to a study published in the British Medical Journal recently.

Karella: Sweetness in bitter taste

Although many people, especially children do not like Karella's taste, but it is a very nutritious vegetable. It is a good source of vitamin C, containing most of the vitamin B complex and vitamin A in the form of carotene. It is also rich in calcium, potassium, phosphorus and iron.

Strategic Issues

Cheonan reshaping strategic relations

THE situation in the Korean Peninsula is tense to use a mild word to describe a situation that an US official has called, with reference to the sinking of the South Korean ship Cheonan by an alleged North Korean torpedo that killed 46 South Korean crewmen, the gravest provocation in decades. It has also set into motion possible developments that could re-define the future of the decades old strategic relationships shaped in the region painstakingly out of realities emerging from the end of the Second World War; the Korean War; the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the emergence of China as a world power.

US rejects Iran's nuclear fuel swap

ON 17th May Iran managed one of its “diplomatic coup” by bringing to Tehran Prime Minister of Turkey Recep Erdogan and President of Brazil, Luis Inacio Lula da Silva, (both countries being the current members of the UN Security Council) who negotiated a deal with Iran of a swap of nuclear fuel with Turkey.

Awami League in power
Lost priorities and opportunities

Did the two year intervention by the military that backed Fakruddin Ahmed's caretaker government teach any political lessons to the political parties in Bangladesh? The answer is unfortunately no. The culture of confrontation and ideological contestation are very much parts of Bangladesh's political culture where the two political parties refuse to cooperate. The Awami League (AL) won a landslide victory in December 2008, which generated the hope of democratization and a change in the confrontational politics that has plagued the nation. People sincerely believed that the two years of military intervention has certainly taught the parties a lesson. Expressing such sentiment the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) General Secretary said “We should replace the existing political culture with a fair one. I won't see your face just because you hold different political ideals or there's a difference of opinion…this attitude can never be helpful for democracy."

Star Books Review

Does civil society matter?

A proof of widespread charlatanism in Bangladesh is how we go by shallow and superficial ideas about important issues. One may easily place the example of our handling of the concept of a civil society. Civil society is what we nowadays mention off and on. Very recently one typically important person here came to call it 'evil' even. It is difficult to pinpoint when this phrase came to acquire wide currency in our country, but once it settled in, nobody looked back before using it to mean this, that and what not.

Perspectives of a Bhutto

FATIMA Bhutto has taken great pains in writing this book. She conducted a series of interviews both in and outside Pakistan of the persons who were either related to the Bhutto family in different ways or in the knowledge of affairs as media people. The writing indicates that the author is in quest of searching the glory and merit of her late lamented father Murtaza Bhutto, the first son of ZA Bhutto, former prime minister of Pakistan who was hanged by his protege General Ziaul Haque through the so-called trial held by the army influenced civil court. Throughout the book I have found the agony of Electra for securing justice for her father. The book opens with the chapter where she has narrated the painful incident of the shooting of her father. When she first hears the sound of shots of firearms, she frantically tries to contact her aunt Benazir Bhutto then prime minister of Pakistan. But, according to her, Benazir's oleaginous husband Asif Ali Zardari (presently president of Pakistan) refuses to give in. Finally it is he who confirms that Mortuza has been shot. Can it be thought that the brother of the prime minister can be so openly shot and killed without the blessing of the state? But, of course, this is the legacy of Pakistan.

Stirrings in the heart

Poetry elevates the soul. It sharpens the senses. Best of all, it explores the entirety of being. That happens to be at the core of this work. Do not be surprised by the bilingual nature of it. There are the poems in the original, by Zahida Meherunnissa. And then there are the English versions of them, crafted into meticulous form by Feiroj Adams. You might argue that there is a straying of the rules here in that the poems come in a package, that is, in a single volume. Obviously, though, Adams was too moved by Meherunnissa's poetry to consider coming forth with them separately. And thus you have the pleasure of a work, coming to you per courtesy of Meherunnissa, enhanced through the constructive engagement, as it were, of Feiroj Adams.

Of poetry and science

THE book under review, although a small publication, yet contains some important observations on our national poet, Kazi Nazrul Islam, who is popularly known as the Rebel Poet. We know that Nazrul Islam was a genius with versatile talents. Till now much research on the literary aspects of the poet's outstanding works has been conducted and a lot of unknown findings have also been released. But as far as this reviewer's knowledge goes, no research has so far been undertaken to explore the scientific aspects of Nazrul's wonderful poetic creations. The author of the work Mohabiggani Kobi Nazrul undertook research work to explore the scientific messages hidden in the poetic verses of the great poet. As revealed by the author, it was Poet Nazrul who hinted at the arrival of the mobile phone (or mutho phone) in his famous poem Sangkalpo:
“BISHSHAW JOGOT DEKHBO AAMI
AAPON HATER MUTHOYE PURE….”



The Daily Star

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