News of: Saturday, 12th of June, 2010
Africa's first football World Cup began with an explosion of colour and emotion in a ceremony in Johannesburg's Soccer City Friday, but blighted by the absence of a heartbroken Nelson Mandela.
Finance Minister AMA Muhith yesterday firmly defended the Tk 132,170 crore national budget for the next financial year.
The Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) said yesterday the government has set an ambitious economic and investment target for fiscal 2010-11.
With less than one week remaining for the City Corporation polls, Chittagong has turned into a city of festival, as supporters of different candidates are now busy round the clock in carrying out mass campaign.
The cost of education in private universities of the country may go up if the proposal made by the finance minister of levying VAT on the private universities is carried out.
A leading chamber has slammed the government proposal to impose tax on the income of institutional investors in the stock market.
Unabated encroachment and continuous dumping of solid waste into the Kutubkhali Khal in Dhaka have put the canal in a very sorry state.
Brushing aside the criticism that the proposed budget is too ambitious, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said the budget was formulated to ensure the people's economic freedom, and her government will be able to implement it.
The National Board of Revenue (NBR) has set fees for transhipment and transit of goods from neighbouring countries, as Bangladesh is getting ready to offer the service.
The Foreign Investors' Chamber of Commerce and Industry has feared a costlier funding for trade, commerce and industries, as the proposed budget is heavily dependent on bank borrowings.
Zakir held the transparent plastic bottle up against the light of the sun to see for sure if there were anything inside. He turned it upside down and let the last drops of baby-pink colour liquid inside the bottle drop on his hand. It felt oily to him and he rubbed it on his naked body.
A woman and her two children were found dead in their house in the capital's Jurain area yesterday.
Three pirates were killed and two Rapid Action Battalion members injured in a “shootout” between the law enforcers and pirates in the river Baleshwar near Chardoani in Patharghata upazila early yesterday.
Another victim of the June 3 Nimtoli blaze succumbed to her injuries at the capital's Combined Military Hospital (CMH) yesterday.
The dry run e-voting started at Jamalkhan (ward-21) in Chittagong yesterday to make voters acquainted with the electronic voting system.
A case was filed against BNP standing committee member Salauddin Quader Chowdhury Thursday night on charge of making “false allegation” regarding voter list of the Chittagong City Corporation election.
A man reportedly committed suicide in custody at Rab-1 headquarters in the city's Uttara yesterday afternoon.
Authorities of Jahangirnagar University (JU) stopped the felling of trees in the campus in face of teachers' protest on Thursday.
An unidentified criminal was killed in mob beating at Sailya-Gobindapur village under Saturia upazila of the district early Friday.
Japanese scientists are celebrating the successful deployment of their solar sail, Ikaros.
IT cannot be said that the national budget for the next fiscal year (FY 2010-2011) at around Tk132.17 billion, which is 16.9 per cent of the proposed Gross Domestic Product (GDP) worth Tk 780.29 billion, is too ambitious given the overall size of the economy and the population. And compared to the revised budget for the outgoing fiscal (2009-10), it is only 35 per cent higher. From considerations of novelty, there is, however, not much to write home about except that it is a continuation of the earlier budget in terms of the emphasis given on human resources development, agriculture, power and energy and rural development. However, with extra thrust on infrastructures like power and energy on which the proposed allocation has been increased by 61.5 per cent, the new budget promises to facilitate investment better than before.
FOR a long time we have been fed on an impression that structurally our district, upazila and rural health complexes have been among the best in the region and we never tired of showcasing it to visiting dignitaries. It's time however we stop resting on the laurel unless we have made them into thriving, vibrant health complexes with all the OPD and in-patient facilities constantly under the watch of qualified doctors and nurses.
Uruguay youngster Nicolas Lodeiro became the first player to be sent off at the 2010 World Cup as his side played out a 0-0 draw against a lacklustre France in Group A.
The 2010 World Cup is underway in South Africa.
When choosing a vuvuzela at the World Cup you put your money where your mouth is.
An unabashed US Vice President Joe Biden told President Barack Obama on Friday he was sorry for leaving him behind to manage the oil spill but was thrilled to be watching the World Cup.
As the eyes of the world turned to South Africa for the World Cup kickoff on Friday, residents of battle-scarred Somalia were still scrambling to find ways to watch games amid bombings and artillery barrages.
Rafael Marquez denied hosts South Africa a dream start to the World Cup with his goal 11 minutes from time earning Mexico a deserved draw at Soccer City.
Diego Maradona is set to unleash his formidable trio of goal poachers to get Argentina off to a flying start at the World Cup against Nigeria here on Saturday.
The world's greatest sporting extravaganza, the football World Cup, started yesterday at the Soccer City in Johannesburg which will grip us like all the people of the world for the next thirty days with all its glory, charm, excitement, sorrows and happiness.
Usha Krira Chakra, defending champions of the Premier Division hockey league could be facing relegation as punishment for not turning up for the opening match of the Green Delta Insurance Premier Division Hockey League against Police AC yesterday.
Bangladesh cricket team will be off to Colombo today to play in the Asia Cup that begins on June 15.
England have been urged to lay down a World Cup marker when they take on the United States in their opening Group C match here on Saturday.
South Korea and Greece dip their toes into the World Cup water at this Eastern Cape port on Saturday anxious to get precious points on board with Argentina and Nigeria facing off later up in Ellis Park.
Steven Gerrard believes Wayne Rooney can be the player who defines Africa's first World Cup.
The world came to Soweto on Thursday for a celebration of soccer, music and unity on the eve of Africa's first World Cup, with a concert featuring international headliners Shakira, the Black Eyed Peas and Alicia Keys.
US striker Jozy Altidore expects the best from scandal-hit former England captain John Terry in Saturday's World Cup matchup.
ELIA SPARKS TWITTER BAN
Netherlands' World Cup squad has been banned from using Twitter after Eljero Elia sparked a racism row with comments on a live streaming video.
Ivory Coast captain, Didier Drogba, could start their opening World Cup game against Portugal next week, coach Sven-Goran Eriksson said yesterday.
Brazilian legend Pele says he is concerned by the form of the country's playmaker Kaka heading into the World Cup finals in South Africa.
Soccer fans from 23 countries are tipping five-time world champions Brazil to win the first ever World Cup finals held on African soil, a Reuters-Ipsos poll found on Friday.
Argentina coach Diego Maradona on Friday expressed his belief that Barcelona's Argentine superstar Lionel Messi can emulate his own achievements from 24 years ago.
Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid yesterday urged all to join rallies at district and upazila level schools and colleges to launch a social movement against stalkers tomorrow.
Speakers at a roundtable here yesterday underlined the need for a concerted effort of all quarters to protect the street children from all sorts of violence, including sexual exploitation.
Deputy Speaker Shawkat Ali yesterday said the background of the historic Agartala Case was "incorrectly" described in the school textbooks.
At least two people were killed in separate road accidents in Chapainawabganj and Gaibandha yesterday
Leaders of different political, social and professional organisations yesterday expressed mixed reactions to the national budget announced on Thursday.
Information and Cultural Minister Abul Kalam Azad yesterday said the government is encouraging expansion of print and electronic media for ensuring free flow of information.
A Bangladeshi delegation visited a number of water-related institutes and research centres in India from June 2 to 8 to explore the scope of training and higher studies for Bangladeshi water resources professionals at those institutes, says a press release.
Two BCL leaders were stabbed with sharp weapons by their rivals in Deola area of Tangail town yesterday afternoon.
As a freedom fighter, the service of Chief of Air Staff Air Marshal SM Ziaur Rahman has been extended by next two years with effect from June 13, 2010 in public interest, an ISPR press release said here yesterday.
Special care should be provided for the victims of human trafficking to facilitate their reintegration into society, as they are exposed to physical abuse and severe trauma.
Apart from the women ministry, ten ministries and divisions will focus on gender budgeting in the coming fiscal year to end gender disparities.
The Bonn climate talks ended yesterday witnessing the US and China softening stance on various issues of climate politics.
Director General of Russian Atomic Energy Corporation 'Rosatom' Sergey V Kirienko on Thursday said Russia is ready for all cooperation for implementation of the nuclear power plant in Bangladesh.
At least 20 people were injured in a clash between the two families, who are relatives, at Bordowali village in Shibchar, Madaripur, yesterday over a trifling matter.
Hill Women's Federation (HWF) has called a half-day road and waterway blockade in Rangamati today in protest against the decision of local administration.
A tornado lashed three villages in Aditmari upazila in Lalmonirhat at dawn yesterday, injuring eight people and damaging over 200 kutcha houses.
Kyrgyzstan's interim government declared a state of emergency and slapped a curfew on southern parts of the country yesterday as ethnic clashes left at least 37 people dead and more than 500 wounded.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad yesterday said Israel was "doomed" and singled out US President Barack Obama for scorn, blaming Washington for orchestrating new nuclear sanctions against Tehran.
European Union foreign ministers will call on Israel next week to lift a three-year-old blockade of Gaza which they describe as "unacceptable and counterproductive" -- including to Israel's security.
A car bomb struck a joint US-Iraqi military convoy north of Baghdad yesterday, killing at least five people, including two American troops.
A volley of US missiles killed 15 alleged militants in an extremist stronghold in northwestern Pakistan yesterday, the second such strike in less than 12 hours, officials said.
Former Indian President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam has termed the verdict on the Bhopal gas tragedy as anguishing and said the output of law and judiciary was not proportionate to the sufferings of the people.
Two US troops and at least 11 civilians died in violence across southern Afghanistan yesterday, including one attack in which a suicide bomber wearing a burqa blew himself up in a bazaar.
Pope Benedict begged forgiveness from God and victims of child sexual abuse by priests yesterday and vowed that the Catholic Church would do everything in its power to ensure that it never happens again.
A 16-year-old sailor on a round-the-world journey alone was drifting in the frigid southern Indian Ocean yesterday as rescue boats headed toward her yacht, damaged by 30-foot waves that knocked out her communications and prompted her to set off a distress signal.
Arts & Entertainment
Eminent filmmaker and film society activist Badal Rahman passed away yesterday. A major cardiac arrest caused the death. The veteran filmmaker died early Friday morning (at around 4:30 am) at BIRDEM. He was 61. Rahman left behind two daughters and a son.
Through various programmes the mega-celebration of Rabindranath Tagore's 150th birth anniversary (May 8, 2011) has begun in both Bangladesh and India. Cultural organisations from both countries are arranging programmes in this regard.
I've always been a supporter of Brazil. I love sports, particularly football. Don't want to miss any of the matches. The whole world has got football fever now! I want Argentina and Brazil in the final.
One youngster's dream came true: fireworks lit up the night sky above Bangabandhu National Stadium, marking the crowning of Nusrat Zuhuri Pranti, the winner of 'Meridian-Channel i Khudey Gaan Raaj 2010.'
The Spanish Cultural Centre was inaugurated on June 9 at Banani in the city, according to a press release. The Spanish Ambassador to Bangladesh Arturo Perez Martinez presided over the inaugural programme. State Minister for Cultural Affairs Advocate Promod Mankin was the chief guest at the programme, while noted Bangladeshi expatriate painter Monirul Islam was present as special guest. Faer Mahmud, head of the Spanish Cultural Centre, was also present.
TV serial "FDC" will be aired on Rtv tonight at 9:45pm. The serial has been written and directed by Kochi Khondakar.
THE havoc caused by the devastating fire at Nabab Katra, Nimtoli in old Dhaka on the night of June 3 has sent shock waves across the country and beyond. Never before, as the burn unit chief of Dhaka Medical College and Hospital said, had the burn unit of DMC or for that matter any other hospital in the country seen so many burnt people coming for treatment at a time. Nor had Azimpur graveyard ever seen so many coffins at a time.
BANGLADESH has been registering annual economic growth of more than 5% on average for the last two decades. This figure for a developing nation is commendable, if not impressive. The World Bank claims that growth acceleration since 1990 has been accompanied by faster progress on poverty reduction in Bangladesh. The poverty rate fell from 58% in 1992 to 49% in 2000, and further down to 40% by 2005; one of the fastest rates of poverty reduction in the region.
ACUTE shortage of electricity and natural gas has forced the government to resort to the establishment of rental power stations, bypassing official procurement procedures. For the moment the people are prepared to accept the government's compulsion to rent equipment and buy fuel at exorbitant prices, but they are aware that the crisis has arisen because of policy failures of past governments and the lack of readiness of the present one.
THERE has been a call (ref. Engr. Abdul Wadud's letter dated May 24) for a fresh technical feasibility study for the proposed Russian reactor for Rooppur before the government signs a billion dollar deal. This is entirely justified.
Human being is probably the most intelligent among the million species. He has tamed the nature by his knowledge and comparative physical advantages. However, in his reckless consumption spree for the sake of development and prosperity, humans have used different species in such a way that many of those have already become extinct and some others are under threat of extinction.
WHATEVER the religious scriptures depict, man as a species of living beings constitutes a negligible part of the earth's biota. Yet, having overwhelming intelligence and capacity to mould nature, he has done much harm to the environment that nurtures all of them with motherly affection. In essence, we -- the humans -- have been a destructive species that has caused irreparable damage to mother nature just for rapid production of our utilities and to lead an easier and rather lavish life.
As I was driving to work, I heard on the radio that Che, the legendary revolutionary, was visiting my hometown this coming Friday. My first reaction was to dismiss the announcement as a prank. By the time I reached the expressway, I was convinced that it was a case of bad radio reception since I was driving though some dead zones of which there are plenty in the suburbs where I live. However, after I reached my office, curiosity overwhelmed my better judgment, and I checked on the Internet and found that Che was indeed coming to my town.
It is not every day that one sees a funeral procession of a police officer who died in the line of duty. I witnessed such a one, one of the most serious and spectacular processions that I have ever seen, a few days ago. In a civilized society, it is the police officers who safeguard law and order and keep things flowing. It is also the police that prevent crime. Without them society will be in chaos. A police officer, a nurse, a sweatshop factory worker, a city sanitary worker, a fireman, a postal worker, a farmer who grows things for us; they are the backbone of any society. They are the everyday heroes who we do not give a moment's thought. Some of them earn less than a dollar a day.
When the sky turns crimson in the west even as the day ends, I remember my father. It has been more than fourteen years since I last had any conversation with him. There will be years, a myriad of them, when he and I will not have occasion to speak to each other again. He has been dead all these years and sleeps in the shadow of pastoral trees through which the winds blow and the rains pour.
THERE was another twist in the tail related to the sinking of Cheonan. Japan's Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama resigned, primarily over his failure to keep his election promise to the people of Okinawa to shift the US base out of the island. The sinking of Cheonan allegedly by North Korean torpedo created heightened security concerns among the majority of the people of Japan. They have seen the indispensability of strengthening the security links with USA instead of weakening it, as Hatoyama was perceived to be doing.
THERE is no doubt Israel grossly underestimated the worldwide condemnation to its naval operation against the flotilla of six ships trying to deliver humanitarian aid to Gaza.
Gunmen in Pakistan opened fire on trucks carrying supplies to NATO troops in Afghanistan, torching more than a dozen vehicles and killing seven people near Islamabad, police said Wednesday.
Israel's army announced late Monday the creation of a team of high-ranking officials charged with examining and learning from the deadly May 31 operation against a Gaza-bound aid flotilla.
Star Books Review
The following review was published almost three years back, a year after Fakrul Alam's book of translations of Jibanananda Das's poems came out. Amazingly (for a book of translated poems, that is) that first edition sold out, and a second edition - with a smaller, more pleasing font, with the addition of some more translated poems like Knowing How These Fields Will Not Be Hushed That Day and I Stay in the City All the Time, and with a few poems reworded, as in Life's Transactions Have Closed Again now is Life's Mart Has Closed Again - is now out. All of which merits a reprint of the original review, specially for those readers who missed it on the first go-around.
Chitra Divakaruni's first volume of short stories, Arranged Marriage, was so good that when my eyes alighted upon another such collection, The Lives of Strangers, in a bookshop, I had to buy it just then.
God has always been elusive. Or the search for Him has been. Then too there are all the instances where looking for God, putatively finding Him and then claiming Him for a particular religious community has spawned issues over which vast global regions have become involved. Witness the aftermath of 11 September 2001 in the United States. Suddenly, because of the destruction in New York, Western interest in Islam as also its fears of it have become a considerable many degrees more pronounced. Karen Armstrong, happily for us, is not guided by these immediate considerations. For a basic reason, which is that she has for a very long time been writing on religion and has particularly remained busty expostulating the diverse aspects of the Islamic faith. Reasoned analyses have been part of her assessments of the place of faith in life.