News of: Saturday, 5th of June, 2010
The death toll from Nimtoli blaze rose to 117 yesterday and may go up even further as most of those wounded are in critical condition, said a government official.
The fire department's lack of readiness to deal with fire in dense neighbourhoods with narrow streets, and unplanned building boom in the capital were the reasons for the high number of casualties in Thursday's Nimtoli blaze, according to urban planning experts.
For meeting its ambitious revenue target, the government is planning to introduce some new types of taxes in the next fiscal year including inheritance tax, and a tax on share market profit of institutions.
Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) ATM Shamsul Huda here yesterday urged the candidates to carry on electioneering maintaining the electoral code of conduct to hold a free and fair election.
The clock moved 15 minutes past midnight. A man, accompanied by his friends and relatives, arrived in the eerie neighbourhood of Nimtoli last night. He looked up into space and cried in near-silence.
Rajuk will identify the unauthorised buildings in the capital's Begunbari area and demolish the risky ones, Rajuk officials said.
Expatriate Jamil of Hossaini Dalan came home three months ago to marry 19-year-old Runa Akhter of Nimtoli in Old Dhaka. The engagement of the two was arranged on Thursday night.
While many were still finding it hard to accept, scores of people were wailing and waiting at Nawab Katra Primary School gate the whole day yesterday to see their dear ones lost in Nimtoli blaze Thursday.
Over a hundred graves were kept ready before noon at the Azimpur graveyard yesterday for the burial of fire victims, who met tragic end of their lives in a devastating fire at the capital's Old Dhaka Thursday night.
The country will observe a national mourning day today in memory of those killed in Nimtoli fire and Begunbari building collapse tragedies.
The Russian Federation, China and the UK have condoled the loss of numerous lives in a devastating fire in Old Dhaka on Thursday night, according to separate messages received here last night.
He did not know his three-year-old daughter had already been buried.
England captain Rio Ferdinand and Ivory Coast skipper Didier Drogba became the latest high-profile World Cup injury victims on Friday.
Criminals yesterday evening hurled a homemade grenade on policemen at a check post in Doyaganj intersection of Gendaria, injuring five people including a policeman.
Early wickets were not enough for Bangladesh to gain full control of the first day of the second and final Test against England at Old Trafford in Manchester yesterday.
Citizen rights organisation Shushashoner Jonney Nagarik (Shujan) yesterday demanded probe into the information furnished by the candidates for Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) elections.
The main opposition BNP and its key political ally Jamaat-e-Islami are set to hold a meeting tonight amid wide spread speculation whether the issue of war crimes trial will come up in the discussion.
A seven-storey illegal building tilted in Begunbari yesterday, days after an unauthorised building collapsed in the same neighbourhood killing 25 people.
At least two people drowned and one was missing as a storm capsized three boats in the river Padma Thursday night at Charjanajat under Shibchar upazila of the district.
Japan's parliament installed Naoto Kan as prime minister yesterday, handing the political veteran the immediate task of rallying his party and reclaiming its mandate for change before elections next month.
Indian Border Security Force's attempt at constructing a concrete structure triggers tension as Bangladesh Rifles protests by hoisting red flags on the Tamabil and Padua borders in Sylhet on Thursday.
Throngs of tourists and kite-flyers milled around Tiananmen Square yesterday under the watchful eye of security forces on alert for any attempt to commemorate the 21st anniversary of the bloody military crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrations.
A meeting of two major ruling parties Nepali Congress (NC) and CPN (UML) in presence of Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal yesterday morning reiterated the PM would not resign until a consensus is reached on all controversial issues of peace process.
THE Thursday night's fire in old Dhaka with its horizontal and vertical swipes wreaked such havoc on human lives and property that it sent instant shock waves throughout the country and well beyond. As we find ourselves in a national mourning mode and pray for salvation of the departed souls and early recovery and rehabilitation of the victims, our intense anguish must steel us into a resolve to avert recurrence of any such disaster. And, we believe that it is within our means to accomplish the task whatever may be the enormity of the problems. These are basically structural giving rise to built-in vulnerabilities which induced as they are by manmade factors can be redressed through human intervention.
ALTHOUGH the overseas employment minister Khandakar Mosharraf Hossain has been harping the same tune, there is a good deal of rationale behind it. The argument behind his assertion that high migration cost may spell doom for manpower export in future is forceful enough to draw attention. Already, we are taking the brunt of a declining curve in overseas employment requiring an effective thrust to shore it up.
Drogba breaks elbowAgencies, Sion
England's Ian Bell and Eoin Morgan held firm after Bangladesh dismissed Kevin Pietersen for 64 on the first day of the second and final Test at Old Trafford here on Friday.
Robin Soderling blasted his way past Tomas Berdych into the French Open final on Friday.
Sabrina Sultana disposed champion Sharmin Akhter Ratna to regain gold in the 10m air rifles event of the 24th National Shooting Champion-ship at the National Shooting Championship in Gulshan yesterday.
Pushban Mollah struck the league's tenth hattrick as Rahmatganj ended their Bangladesh League campaign with a thumping 5-1 win over Chittagong Abahani at the MA Aziz Stadium in Chittagong yesterday.
Notre Dame College and Government Barisal College will play in the final of the inter-college Clear Men Confidence Cup at the Army Stadium in Banani.
WORLD CUP 2002 CONTINUED
Spain had an effortless time sweeping to the top of a group containing South Africa, Slovenia - taking their World Cup bow - and Paraguay. The Paraguayans had to rely on a late goal against the Slovenians in a 3-1 win to sneak past the luckless Africans on the narrowest of margins, goals scored.
Mexico recorded the most impressive result of their World Cup warm-up matches by beating defending champions Italy 2-1 in a friendly game here on Thursday.
European champions Spain eked out a 1-0 victory over South Korea in a World Cup finals warm-up match here on Thursday.
Defender Patrice Evra will captain France at the World Cup as Thierry Henry has accepted his place on the bench for the duration of the tournament.
New captain Philipp Lahm hit the equaliser and his deputy Bastian Schweinsteiger scored two penalties as Germany came from behind to beat Bosnia-Herzegovina 3-1 win here on Thursday in a World Cup friendly.
Champions League-winning striker Diego Milito left Argentina training early on Thursday after suffering a knock to his right ankle.
Torres is the only member of Del Bosque's 23-man squad not to see any action in this week's two friendly wins, over Saudi Arabia and South Korea, as the Liverpool man continues his recovery from the knee operation he underwent in April.
Half-centuries from Jacques Kallis and J.P. Duminy helped South Africa complete a clean sweep of their One-day International series with West Indies, when they won the fifth and final match by one wicket here on Thursday.
Samantha Stosur believes playing a first Grand Slam final outside her Australian hot house of expectations could work in her favour when she tackles Francesca Schiavone in Saturday's French Open final.
Rudi Koertzen, the South African umpire, has announced his retirement from officiating in international cricket: his last Test will be the Pakistan-Australia fixture at Headingley from July 21 to 25. The ICC have added Marais Erasmus, from South Africa, and Rodney Tucker, from Australia, to the Elite Panel of Umpires for 2010-11 to replace Koertzen and Mark Benson, who stepped down from the panel in February.
FM Syed Mahfuzur Rahman Emon took an early lead in the Six Seasons International chess tournament held at the NSC Tower yesterday.
Ritu got off to a flying start in the Citycell 30th National Badminton Championship that began at the Wooden Floor Gymnasium in the capital yesterday.
Serena and Venus Williams clinched the French Open women's doubles title on Friday to become only the third team to hold all four Grand Slam titles at the same time.
The government should immediately popularise the method of harvesting the best yields with the least consumption of water to tackle the climate change impacts on agriculture, speakers said on Thursday at a workshop in the city.
Awami League lawmaker Akhteruzzaman Chowdhury at a meeting yesterday urged all to cast votes for AL-backed mayor candidate ABM Mohiuddin Chowdhury to turn Chittagong a healthy and environment friendly city.
Solar power systems on rooftops of high-rise buildings in urban areas can greatly help ensure uninterrupted supply of electricity that would mitigate the prevailing energy crisis to a large extent, expert said.
Social, political and cultural organisations yesterday expressed profound shock at the loss of huge lives in a devastating blaze in the city's Nimtoli area on Thursday night.
The blaze at Nimtoli in the city has been extinguished; now mourning fills the air, with signs of devastation all over the area. The fire that broke out on Thursday night has claimed the lives of 109 people.
An Awami League leader was gunned down at Noapara in Jessore on Thursday night.
One retired BDR personnel was killed as a sand laden truck hit him near Farazibari gas turbine of the district yesterday.
Eminent personalities yesterday called on the government to establish a commission immediately to ensure conservation of heritage and archaeological sites in the country.
With the theme 'I care, I Walk', Save the Children yesterday launched a campaign titled “Every One” to create awareness on the issue of child survival among the people as well as to honour hundreds of health workers working to save the lives of children all over the world.
Newly appointed Bangladesh Ambassador to Germany Mosud Mannan presented his credentials to Federal President Dr Horst Kohler at Bellevue Palace in Berlin on May 28.
Chief Executive Officer of Unilever Paul Polman is leaving today after his two-day visit to Bangladesh, says a press release.
'Digital TV Expo,' an exposition of mainly latest television technology and allied products for home users and business clients, drew huge crowd on the second day of the fair at Sheraton Hotel in the city yesterday, says a press release.
Turkey yesterday warned it might reduce economic and defence ties with Israel following the deadly raid on a Gaza aid flotilla.
The United States yesterday voiced concern over Myanmar's "growing military ties" with North Korea amid allegations the junta was working with Pyongyang to develop nuclear weapons.
Thousands of people shouting anti-Israeli slogans and waving Palestinian flags rallied across Turkey yesterday as victims of a bloody raid on a Gaza-bound aid ship were laid to rest.
South African President Jacob Zuma, on his first state visit to Asia, said it was time to take trade ties with India to a "higher level" after talks yesterday with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
Afghan tribal elders and religious leaders formally endorsed President Hamid Karza's proposals to seek peace with the Taliban to end nine years of war on the final day of a traditional assembly yesterday.
US President Barack Obama announced that he would visit India in November, in response to an invitation last year from the Indian PM Manmohan Singh.
The Government yesterday declared Indian Mujahideen, believed to be a shadow outfit of banned SIMI and Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba, as a terrorist organisation.
Arts & Entertainment
Incorporeal or earthbound, integral to conscience or an autonomous existence -- metaphysical arguments over the soul continues. As people are deprived and depraved, do souls get used, abused and exploited? GMB Akash, whose photographic vision has been internationally recognised, doesn't go anywhere near these arguments, rather his latest exhibition explores souls in likely and unlikely places -- in flames of a pyre; in a muted, congested, yet lonely home for the elderly and the poorly lit room of a prostitute.
Ranbir Kapoor is entering politics...on-screen though. The Bollywood heartthrob is eagerly waiting the release of “Raajneeti,” his first serious film. “Raajneeti” has been directed by acclaimed helmer Prakash Jha.
A weeklong exhibition on National poet Kazi Nazrul Islam, titled “Anjali Loho Mor…” is currently on at Bangali Shomogro Museum on Elephant Road in Dhaka.
“Pran Kokila,” an album featuring songs popularised by legendary folk artiste Abdul Alim, was recently released by Sunflower Music. The album contains 12 folk songs, including “Tomaro Lagia,” “Chirodin Pushlam,” “Bohudin-er Piriti Go,” “Kenoba Taarey Shopey Dilam,” “Prem-er Mora” and “Nirikh Bandhorey Dui Noyoney”.
Chayanika Chowdhury is to direct a TV play written by the late Shahrukh Shahid. The play “Sayanhe” will be a tribute to the late fashion designer, artist.
Marilyn Monroe's sultry rendition of “Happy Birthday” sung for President John F. Kennedy's 45th birthday celebration marked the actress' last major public appearance before her mysterious death in August 1962.
Deshi Dosh (a common platform shared by ten of the most popular fashion houses in Bangladesh) celebrated National Poet Kazi Nazrul Islam's 111th birth anniversary at the Deshi Dosh Chattar, Bashundhara City Mall on June 3. Coordinator of Deshi Dash, Shahid Hossain Shamim, spoke on the occasion.
Dhaka Fashion Week 2010 has been postponed in commiseration with all those who died in the unfortunate blaze at old Dhaka last Thursday night, says a press release. The nation observes a day of mourning today, following a declaration from the government in remembrance of the victims of the tragedy. The organisers expressed their deepest sympathy and offered their prayers for all the departed souls and hoped the Almighty will give their family and loved ones the strength to bear this irreplaceable loss. All the designers, models, partners and sponsors along with the organisers mourn with the nation. The date of the event will be announced later.
98 and 74. If I am asked, I would say these are the two figures that sum up the mood of Bangladesh's youth. A staggering 98% of them believe that they should be involved in social work. On the other side of the coin, 74% of them are not interested in politics.
IT all depends on how you interpret the "Right to Live." The Israelis believe that they can live only if their state, Israel, is not challenged by any power or people in the Middle East. Others, particularly the Palestinians, who were once strongly opposed to the existence of Israel, believe that they, however weak militarily, too have the right to live.
FIRST, shutting down the telephone companies, next came closing the TV channel, then came blocking Facebook, and now cancellation of the declaration of a newspaper; one after another, the government actions do not testify well for a democratically elected government committed to upholding the right of its citizens, ensuring free flow of information, building digital Bangladesh and safeguarding freedom of press.
THE Euro, the second strongest currency in the world, has slid down alarmingly. This is because of the ailing economy of Greece, one of the countries of the 16-nation Eurozone of continental Europe. Greece is the most indebted country in Europe today, running a huge budget deficit.
THE Daily Star editorial of May 31 last takes issue with the law minister's statement to the effect that there are no more crossfire deaths in the country and makes the pungent observation that such denial would not alter the reality. So, what is the reality? We have two differing versions as to the prevalence of an outright condemnable law enforcement method.
'Where is your desh?' I was asked long ago, and was terribly embarrassed because I did not know the answer! I knew there existed a desh, a mysterious place where my grandmother disappeared for months, several times a year. But that day, ashamed of my ignorance, I ran home to ask my father where my desh was. It was then, at the age of 7, that I learnt that it was in Faridpur, in what was then East Pakistan.
It was a photograph; a figure facing a twilight of brilliant orange spread across the horizon of a silent, still shoreline. I gasped at its sheer elegance.
A turmuz that's what life is
As night casts its spell of darkness
I can see your veins
As like the awful impact on our skin, summer can be a trouble for our eyes too. With the increasing temperature, eye allergies increase many folds causing severe itching, redness and much discomfort in eyes. Ultraviolet (UV) rays in summer can damage our unprotected eyes. Dry eyes, conjunctivitis are also common in summer. But with little precaution, we can have fun in the sun with no trouble with our eyes.
Children who eat three or more burgers a week may be at a higher risk of asthma and wheezing, but a healthy diet rich in fruit and fish seems to stave off the risk, according to a large international study.
People who brush their teeth twice a day have a significantly lower risk of heart disease compared to individuals who have poor oral hygiene, says a research paper recently published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ).
It is not unusual to feel sleepy during daytime, especially after lunch. But excessive sleepiness during daytime affects daily work and many times leaves important works undone. The condition called hypersomnia that is the recurrent sleepiness makes people want to nap repeatedly. Poor sleep habits are often the cause of daytime sleepiness. The following tips can help you avoid daytime sleepiness.
Caffeine makes us more alert is more imagined than real, a UK-led new study published recently in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology suggests.
Although it looks like either round or oval in shape, but regarding its quality it is square. Well, potatoes are good as long as you prepare them in a healthy manner. Boiled and baked potatoes are good; but french fries and potato chips are two worst foods of this century. Boiled potatoes are a good source of vitamins, minerals and fiber, especially if you eat the skin. In fact, 60 per cent of the potassium contained in the potato lies so close to the skin that it cannot be saved if the potato is peeled.
Engaging in physical activity costs a lot. Going into a gymnasium, using equipment, special shoes, clothes are all about money and time. These are the common myths persist among the people that discourage people to be active physically. But the truth is that physical activity can be done almost anywhere and does not necessarily require equipment!
ON May 27th, President Barack Obama announced the new national security doctrine. It is rooted in diplomatic engagement and international alliances, essentially repudiating his predecessor's emphasis on unilateral US power and the right to wage preemptive war. The President unveiled a preview of the new security doctrine on 15th May, at the US Military Academy at West Point.
SINCE the end of the World War II, the Korean peninsula has been known to the world as one of the flash points in the map of international conflicts. The situation in the Korean Peninsula is again turning into a genuine strategic predicament in the whole region. The recent crisis is centered on the sinking of the Cheonan, a South Korean naval vessel, on 26 March 2010 causing the deaths of 46 sailors. The sinking of Cheonan as such did not generate much heat in the Peninsula at the initial stage, because immediately after the incident the South Korean government formed an international investigation team officially known as the Joint Civilian-Military Investigation Group (JIG) consisting of experts from the US, the UK, Australia, Sweden and South Korea. It clearly shows the South Korean government has taken the appropriate step to identify the real cause behind the incident. The report of the investigators was finally published on 20 May 2010. The report reveals that a North Korean submarine's torpedo sank the Cheonan on 26 March 2010. As it states, “The evidence points overwhelmingly to the conclusion that the torpedo was fired by a North Korean submarine. There is no other plausible explanation.”
China resisted pressure on May 30 from South Korea and Japan to censure North Korea publicly for the sinking of a warship, calling only for regional tensions over the incident to be defused.
Lebanon's military fired anti-aircraft artillery at Israeli warplanes that were flying over Lebanon, a senior Israeli security official said on Tuesday.
Star Books Review
CHILDHOOD for many of us was much more than a coming by experience. It was all too often a long journey into the lands of the imagination. And those lands were peopled by elves, sprites, fairies, ghosts, gnomes and spirits. And we came to know of these supernatural beings from our mothers by and large, from our fathers to a certain extent. There were all the gripping tales of good, innocent men waylaid by ghosts and demons in the shape of wild beasts even as storms lashed the woodlands on the edge of the village. Branches were ripped off the huge trees and unnatural laughter was heard as the leaves scattered in the rainstorm. The weary traveller, having lost his way in the storm, was now at the mercy of the ghostly beings now dancing all around him in eerie manner. He stumbled, he slipped; and he found, to his consternation, that his natural ability to scream out in fear had suddenly and inexplicably left him. And so it went on till dawn, when the evil spirits fled; and the exhausted traveller, by then unconscious and prostrate beside a clear village pond, was rescued by peasants on their way to the fields.
DERELICT is a poignant tale of a bygone age, of a group of people veritably vanished from Bangladesh, told by a person who, one can safely assume upon perusing his biographical note, is familiar with much of the period in Bangladesh's history that he sets as the backdrop for his modest-sized novel. Derelict, though, is a bit more than modest in its putative appeal to the average reader. The era that is now a much-debated period of South Asian history is that of the twilight years of the British raj, and the incipient years of what was properly then East Bengal; the dying breed in Bangladesh is the Anglo-Indian community, a misnomer if ever there was one. Yet the story revolves a male protagonist, Sudhir Sebastian Rosario, a Bengali/native Christian, a group that continues to exist, if not exactly flourish, to this day in this country.
William Dalrymple has perhaps rightly commented that if there is anyone born to write the Bhutto family's story, it is Fatima Bhutto. Songs of Blood and Sword, published by Penguin and Viking, is a sad but unputdownable. Fatima is the granddaughter of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, Pakistan's first democratically elected Prime Minister - ousted by General Zia to be imprisoned and finally hanged in 1979. She is also niece to the first female prime minister in the Muslim world, Benazir Bhutto, assassinated in 2007. The writer lost both her uncle and her father in 1985 and 1996 respectively. As I was poring over the pages, I couldn't help remembering yet another book, Benazir Bhutto's Daughter of the East. Some of the episodes from the books were like looking at the same picture from different angles.