The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Friday, August 1, 2014


News of: Sunday, 18th of July, 2010

Front Page

Ulfa leader captured

Rapid Action Battalion (Rab-9) early yesterday arrested a leader of Indian separatist group United Liberation Front of Asom (Ulfa) and his Bangladeshi aide from Bhairab in Kishoreganj.

JMB man discloses attack details

Detained acting JMB chief Nazmul told interrogators that he and executed JMB military commander Ataur Rahman Sunny were there when JMB men stabbed eminent author Prof Humayun Azad in front of Bangla Academy in February, 2004.

MRP delivery gets slow

The task of issuing Machine Readable Passports (MRP) is seriously hindered because of non-cooperation of staff at the Department of Immigration and Passport (DIP) and delay in submission of police verification reports.

PM for ensuring job as per quota

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday directed the authorities concerned to strictly follow the quota reserved for physically challenged people while recruiting manpower for government services to give them the opportunities to demonstrate their excellence and efficiency.

DCC gets 100 eco-friendly garbage trucks

The Dhaka City Corporation will soon press into service 100 environmentally friendly garbage trucks to reduce pollution and carbon emission in the capital.

Small industries face tax anomaly hurdles

Progress in light engineering, electrical and electronics industries suffers a setback due to anomalies in tax and VAT (value added tax) structures, sector representatives and experts said yesterday.

Cairn can sell gas to third party

The government may approve this week an incentive to British company Cairn allowing it to sell gas to a third party other than Petrobangla from any newly discovered gas fields in the offshore areas near Kutubdia, a highly placed Petrobangla source said.

Govt move faces stiff opposition from BNP

The government moves to form an all-party parliamentary committee to amend the constitution in light of the High Court judgment that declared illegal the fifth amendment.

Banned Tahrir brings out procession

Three activists of the banned Islamist outfit, Hizb ut-Tahrir were arrested from a procession brought out by them near the press club in the capital yesterday.

Nizami on 5-day fresh remand

A Dhaka court yesterday placed Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami Ameer Motiur Rahman Nizami on a five-day fresh remand in a case filed for killing 345 people during the country's Liberation War.

40 injured as train derails at Parbatipur

At least 40 people were injured after three compartments of a Nilphamari-bound passenger train derailed at Parbatipur upazila yesterday.

AL plans rallies in divisions, dists after Eid

The ruling Awami League will hold rallies in all divisional and district headquarters after Ramadan to drum up support in favour of the government move's to try the war criminals, party General Secretary Syed Ashraful Islam said yesterday.

RMG worker crushed under bus

Agitated garments workers put up barricade on Nabinagar-Kaliakoir road at Palashbari in Ashulia for two hours following the death of a garment worker in a road accident yesterday morning.

Rajshahi road crash kills 6

At least six people, including an unidentified woman, were killed and three others injured in a road accident in Godagari upazila of the district yesterday.

Indo-Pak talks must go on

India and Pakistan said yesterday they would press ahead with a dialogue to build ties shattered by the Mumbai carnage after talks in Islamabad ended in an acrimonious stalemate.

College girl killed in fire

A student of Government Titumir College was killed and five others sustained injuries as fire broke out at a Chinese restaurant in the city's Gulshan area last night.

PM administers CCC mayor's oath today

Newly elected Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) Mayor M Manjur Alam and 55 councillors will take oath of office today.

Family on the run

Male family members of businessman Sabed Hasan, who died Friday during a police raid in Bangshal, are on the run as police implicated them in a snatching case.

Editorial

AL warning to errant MPs and BCL elements

THE top echelon of the Awami League leadership has warned party lawmakers and activists of the Chhatra League that action will be taken against them if they indulge in corruption and other irregularities. Ruling party members of the Jatiya Sangsad have been served notice to the effect that if they stray from the right path, they should not expect the party's nominations at the next general election. They have been asked to stop distributing test relief and government relief-related wheat and instead deal with issues of immediate public concern. Such a position must now move on to the next step. It is not enough to say that errant MPs will not get party nominations in future. What the government must do is go after them right away if it believes they have been indulging in corruption. Surely the nation does not relish the thought of such corruption going on unchecked and unpunished till the next election!

After the exultation over good HSC results

A large number of HSC examinees emerging as high performers in academic results, to many this has signified a certain improvement in the standard of education at the higher secondary stage. The achievers, the institutions and the boards could feel upbeat because of it. There is, however, a downbeat for a large majority of those passing out, especially in two categories: those who could score between GPA5 and GPA3.5 and the whole rest of others who just scraped through with lower grades but accounting for a higher pass rate overall.

Sports

Nazma-Jewel show

Setting seven national records each and claiming a staggering total of 19 gold medals between themselves, Bangladesh Ansar duo Nazma Khatun and Jewel Ahmed lit up the National Swimming Complex in Mirpur at the conclusion of the BRB Cables 26th National Age-Group Swimming Championship yesterday.

Rain looms over Galle

Sri Lanka's world record holder Muttiah Muralidaran was geared up to bowl for the last time in the first Test against India from Sunday, but bad weather threatened to disrupt his swansong.

Butt new Pak captain

Salman Butt will take over the Pakistan captaincy from Shahid Afridi for next week's second and final Test against Australia at Headingley, Pakistan tour manager Yawar Saeed told AFP on Saturday.

Dhoni wants to make it tough for Murali

Sri Lanka's Muttiah Muralidaran needs just eight wickets in his final Test appearance to become the first player to reach the 800-mark but India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni has no intention of making it easy for him.

Nasir, Riaz beat Ajax

Sonali Bank won their match against Ajax Sporting Club 2-1 in the Green Delta Insurance Premier Hockey League at the Maulana Bhasani Hockey Stadium yesterday.

Jatrabari post easy win

Jatrabari Krira Chakra earned a 2-0 victory over Agrani Bank in the Basundhara Senior Division Football League at the Birshreshtha Mostafa Kamal Stadium in Kamalapur yesterday.

Henry confirms int'l retirement

French striker Thierry Henry on Thursday confirmed that he has retired from international football after making 123 appearances and scoring a record 51 goals for France.

Bolt quick as usual

World record holder Usain Bolt overcame a slow start to power past Jamaican compatriot Asafa Powell and win their first 100 metres showdown of the season in 9.84 seconds at the Paris Diamond League meeting on Friday.

Fergie refused England twice

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson says he twice rejected the opportunity to coach the England national team.

MU kick off in style

Empty seats proved that in some markets, even the world's most famous soccer club must do more than simply show up to fill a stadium as Manchester United kicked off their North American tour with a 3-1 win over Celtic.

Struggling clubs blocked in Italy

Serie B side Ancona and 20 teams from the Italian lower divisions were blocked from competing in the coming season on Friday because of their financial problems.

Dutch priest suspended

A Dutch priest has been suspended for dedicating a Mass to the Dutch national soccer team -- while wearing an orange cloak -- ahead of the World Cup final against Spain.

Don't blame Evra

Evra, captain of the France squad, was dropped from the team by coach Raymond Domenech for the 2-1 defeat against the hosts following his role in the players' strike in the wake of Nicolas Anelka being sent home for verbally abusing Domenech.

Hammers sign duo

West Ham United have signed Mexico international Pablo Barrera and Olympique Lyon striker Frederic Piquionne, the Premier League club said on Friday.

Barca snap up Adriano

Barcelona have agreed to sign Sevilla midfielder Adriano Correia for up to 13.5 million euros ($17.5 million), subject to medical checks, the La Liga champions said on Friday.

Cram wants British glory days back

Britain must capitalise on the 2012 London Olympics by reclaiming domination over middle distance running, Steve Cram said, 25 years to the day since he smashed the 1,500 metres world record.

Afridi decision lamented

Former Pakistan cricket greats Saturday lamented captain Shahid Afridi's decision to retire from Tests and said he should not have been made captain in the longer version of the game.

Scolari's winning return

Luiz Felipe Scolari, the last coach to steer Brazil to World Cup victory, has made a triumphant return with Palmeiras in his home country after an eight-year absence in Europe and Asia.

BCCI revises Aussie dates

India's cricket board on Friday revised the schedule of Australia's Test and one-day tour of the country in September-October.

Big pullouts a setback for India

India's sports minister on Saturday expressed regret over a series of pullouts from this year's Commonwealth Games in New Delhi, a day after British cyclist Chris Hoy announced his withdrawal.

Rogge being diplomatic

The preparations for the next few Olympics are all going according to plan and with no major problems looming, International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Jacques Rogge has been able to think about his own plans for when he steps down from the most powerful job in sport in 2013.

Business

Yarn prices spiral up

Yarn prices have spiralled back up, marking a rise of around 6 percent in a week on the back of a cotton price hike, industry insiders said.

Difference of opinion on industrial policy

The Finance Division has differed with a proposed industrial policy on different aspects, including privatisation.

Weak safeguard ails BSCIC

A lack of government attention in the past has turned Bangladesh Small and Cottage Industries Corporation (BSCIC) into a 'sick organisation', said the industries minister yesterday.

Micromax makes Bangladesh debut

Indian handset maker Micromax has set foot in Bangladesh by launching a series of mobile sets.

First solar irrigation project launched

Central Bank Governor Atiur Rahman yesterday opened the country's first solar energy-based irrigation project in Kumarkhali village in Barguna.

LDCs to focus on intellectual property

Least developed countries (LDCs) will benefit from a two-day regional summit on intellectual property that will begin in Dhaka tomorrow, Industries Minister Dilip Barua said yesterday.

Walton to export refrigerators to US

RB Group, an electronics maker, has moved to export refrigerators and other items to the US.

Stocks drop on regulatory steps

Dhaka stocks passed a bearish last week, mainly due to regulatory intervention in the market.

Growth fears turn tide against greenback

A six-month rally in the dollar has stalled in recent weeks on concerns about the US economic recovery, prompting some strategists to bet the tide may be turning against the greenback.

Unions to see 'virtual shops'

The government now plans to set up "virtual shops" based on e-commerce -- buying and selling of products or services through electronic systems -- at all unions to create direct link-ups between rural producers and consumers.

Apparel maker aims big

Generation Next Fashions Ltd aims to double exports to Tk 200 crore this year, with even bigger dreams for 2015 -- to hit Tk 1,000 crore in exports.

US banks eye higher fees to boost revenue

Big banks facing big drops in revenue are looking to Main Street to make up the difference.

Wall Street dives

Dismal consumer sentiment data and anemic revenues from GE and two big banks slammed U.S. stocks on Friday, driving down major indexes more than 2 percent.

Merkel urges China to open up markets

German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday prodded China to ease access to its markets, as the world's top two exporting nations signed a series of deals reportedly worth several billion dollars.

Investors uneasy as Google costs rise

Google Inc is pumping hundreds of millions of dollars into new businesses, but Wall Street is nervous about the ultimate payoff.

Oil hovers around $76

Oil hovered around $76 in volatile Asian trade Friday after weak economic data dampened hopes of a swift US rebound from recession.

AIG to pay $725m to settle fraud case

American International Group Inc agreed to pay $725 million to settle a long-running securities fraud lawsuit led by three Ohio public pension funds, in one of the largest class action settlements in US history.

Smartphones boost Sony Ericsson

Mobile phone maker Sony Ericsson pinned its hopes on further growth in the smartphone segment on Friday as it posted a second consecutive quarterly profit, driven by sales of the more expensive gadgets.

Essar mulling IPO of Vodafone Essar stake

Indian steel-to-shipping conglomerate Essar Group has been in talks with banks to explore options, including an initial public offering, for its stake in telecoms firm Vadafone Essar, according to three people familiar with the matter.

Daimler won't be split in two: trucks chief

Daimler's trucks boss Andreas Renschler said there are no plans to split the German company into a passenger carmaker and a truck maker, according to Euro am Sonntag newspaper.

Metropolitan

Call to spread peace edn

The 5th conference of International Coalition of Sites of Conscience (ICSC) began at Brac Inn Centre in the city yesterday with a call to spread peace education in Asian countries.

17 suspended staffs resume work at BSMMU

Seventeen staff members of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU), whose recruitment and promotion were termed controversial and were subsequently suspended by its syndicate, resumed work yesterday following a High Court (HC) order.

141m urban population by 2051 likely

More than 140.89 million people would live in the urban areas by 2051 when the country's total population is projected to be 218 million.

7 killed in road accidents

At least seven people were killed and 16 others injured in separate road accidents in Chittagong, Narsingdi, Panchagarh, Natore and Noakhali yesterday.

Save Paramee Prue

Paramee Prue, a three-year-old girl, has been diagnosed with a bilateral severe-to-profound hearing loss and requires a Cochlear implant surgery to restore her hearing.

Effective JS a must for development

BNP central leader Barrister Moudud Ahmed said making parliament effective is an urgent necessity for national development and making the government accountable, said a press release.

Save Waiz House

A group of socio-cultural activists yesterday urged the government to take immediate steps to protect all historical sites including Waiz House in the city's Waizghat area from land grabbers.

Follow path of truth in facing challenges

Foreign Minister Dr Dipu Moni yesterday urged the students to always follow the path of truth in facing the challenges in life.

No scope to retreat from war crimes trial: Tuku

State Minister for Home Advocate Shamsul Haque Tuku said the government has no scope to retreat from the war crimes trial.

BIS science fair ends

A three-day Annual Science Fair of the Bangladesh International School (BIS) ended on the school premises in the city yesterday, said a press release.

FFs' children urged to create public opinion

State Minister for Liberation War Affairs Capt (retd) AB Tajul Islam yesterday urged the children of freedom fighters to create public opinion to accelerate trial of war criminals, said a press release.

Punishment to culprit demanded

Eden College unit leaders of the Shamajtantrik Chhatra Front, a left-leaning student body, yesterday demanded exemplary punishment of detained Tariquzzaman Kabir, the self-confessed murderer of their fellow student Muhsina Rabbani Menoka.

Action to be taken against persons responsible: IGP

The recent incidents of custodial deaths would be investigated properly and action would be taken against the persons responsible, said the Inspector General of Police Nur Mohammad.

2 salinity tolerant varieties of T-Aman paddy soon

Two salinity tolerant varieties of T-Aman paddy innovated by Bangladesh Rice Research Institute (BRRI) are expected to be released very soon.

Take joint efforts to eradicate poverty

Thai Ambassador in Dhaka Tasanwadee Miancharoen paid a courtesy call on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at Gono Bhaban in the city yesterday.

College student electrocuted

A college student was electrocuted in the city's Bohoddarhat area yesterday.

National

Doctor beaten up, health complex locked as patient dies unattended

Locals and relatives of a patient beat up a doctor and locked Sreepur Upazila Health Complex following death of the patient at the hospital for lack of treatment yesterday.

Over 2 lakh suffer due to 'unplanned' dyke

Over two lakh people of Hakaluki Haor bank villages under Kulaura, Juri and Baralekha upazilas in Moulvibazar district are passing days amid sufferings as their houses and croplands have been affected due to flooding from the large water body for two months.

Early jute harvest starts for handsome profit

The farmers in south-western districts have started harvesting jute at an early stage as the prices of the cash crop shot up to Tk 1,500 to 1,800 per maund (40 kilogram), which is more than their expectation.

'JMB man' kills wife for protesting his activities

Police arrested Jalal Fakir, 30, Imam of Bogi Jame Mosque under Sharankhola upazila of Bagerhat district on Friday on charge of attempting to kill his wife Ayesha Akhter, 24.

7 more Jamaat activists held

Police arrested seven activists of Jamaat-e-Islami in Dinajpur and Satkhira districts yesterday.

Over 200 cases filed in Tangail in 7 months

Two hundred and five cases under Women and Children Repression Prevention Act were filed in Tangail district from November 2009 to May this year while several women and children were murdered and raped in different upazilas of the district during the last one month.

Robbers loot houses, stab 17 in 3 districts

Robbers have looted three houses and injured 17 people in Narsingdi, Madaripur and Khulna districts.

GBB Power of Bogra bill defaulter again

Bogra based private power generation company GBB Power Ltd has again kept unpaid bills of Tk 7.18 crore for gas bills and Higher Heating Value (HHV) bills of Pashchimanchal Gas Company Ltd (PGCL), violating contracts between PGCL and GBB Power Ltd.

12 Indians languishing in jail

Twelve Indian nationals are languishing in jail here despite completion of their jail terms more than a year ago.

Sanctuary birds poached in Bagerhat

Two employees of Bagerhat District and Sessions Judge's Court yesterday poached 11 birds and slaughtered seven of them.

20 hurt in Netrakona clash

At least 20 people were injured, six of them seriously as villagers clashed at Asadpur under Khaliajuri upazila Friday night over a disputed water body.

Barbaric!

Criminals on Friday night raped a housewife and poured acid in her vaginal passage.

FAO starts distribution of farm inputs among cyclone victims

“Farmers in the south need more support with modern technologies to restore their livelihood after the devastations of cyclones Sidr and Aila”, said Ad Spijkers, FAO Representative in Bangladesh in Kathalia upazila in Jhalokathi district on Friday.

Letters

Sustainable population

This crucial matter needs to be seriously taken up. The government must have pragmatic plans and actions to contain the population explosion. Earlier, a significant population control programme was successfully implemented with total commitment and hard work and personal supervision by the (late) Dr. Ibrahim, founder of Diabetic Association of Bangladesh, as the then, Health and Population Planning Adviser under Zia's military rule in the 1970s. Something like that is needed now.

CNG price

The government is thinking of doubling the present price of CNG. If the decision is implemented it would be extremely detrimental to environment of Dhaka metropolitan city as well as a bad sign for investors. Environmentally, CNG is known as a cleaner fuel. In order to save Dhaka Metropolitan city from the menace of environmental degradation, CNG was commercially introduced in 2001.The job was not easy. It took RPGCL, a company of Petrobangla, about 20 years of relentless efforts to popularize CNG in the country. A lot of concessions like low price of CNG as an automobile fuel, 100% duty free import of equipment of CNG stations, allotment of government land etc were given by the government to attract private investors in this sector which was hitherto controlled by the government. The sector grew at a faster rate with the active participation of private investors. More than one billion dollars of investment has been in the sector which is now established on a sound footing. The result is a cleaner environment of Dhaka city which we could not imagine had not CNG been introduced as an automotive fuel. The economic benefit was also tremendous. With the consumption of about only 100 mmcf of gas per day as CNG in the automobiles(which is only 5% of total gas consumption in the country) more than 1 billion dollar worth of foreign exchange is being saved every year in terms reduction of import of liquid hydrocarbon fuel because of use of CNG. Our government is also conscious about environment and it is hard to believe that they will take any decision which will encourage people to go back to use of liquid fuels to run automotive vehicles at the cost of such a hard earned cleaner environment of Dhaka city.

Polybags & environment

In 2002, the government banned the production and use of polybags in our country. Unfortunately, polybags are being widely used again everywhere. Now, we are using a huge amount of polybgas daily and then throwing those into drains. Polybags block the flow of drain water. So, the drainage systems of our big city like Dhaka and Chittagong are blocked in the rainy season due to polybags. Polybags are also a threat to our environment and agriculture.

Garment workers

Where is the conscience of the entire nation? When a factory owner spends thirty to forty thousand taka for a dinner for his family and friends (I have witnessed that in Bangladesh), how can he refuse to pay a mere Tk 3,000 for an entire month of 12 hours workdays for a worker? We have become as bad as the Pakistani oppressors.

Undemocratic provision

After winning independence from West Pakistan in 1971, we started our democratic journey. Our constitutional journey started on 4 November 1972. The journey continued based on the rule of law, fundamental rights, personal liberty, etc before the 4th amendment was made in the constitution. Our constitution followed the British Constitution and it is known to us that all developed countries such as UK, the USA, Japan framed their constitution based on the rule of law, fundamental rights and liberty.

MP sued

The Daily Star carried an editorial on 11 July under the headline "An MP sued by police sergeant'. The paper called it 'unprecedented' maybe, but fully justified'. The editorial was concluded saying that "If the case that has been lodged against the MP is allowed to thrown off course, before producing a conclusive outcome, then an invaluable opportunity of asserting the supremacy of law will be lost. That will be drawing a big blank."

Speculation

Just a joke. Do not take it as any political story. Just assume that the WC final was between Bangladesh and Spain. Can you imagine any ramification of that ? Yes, I can. The Bangladesh team and its management would have boycotted the ceremony in protest of the "doubtful off side goal" awarded to Spain. Further action could even be called for a dawn to dusk "hartal' in Bangladesh to mark a national protest against the "doubtful off side goal". I am sure the "hartal" could be a total success in peaceful atmosphere without any picketing, intimidation and threat, an usual game before and during political hartal.

Women leaders

Is Bangladesh under a divine political curse (since its birth in 1971)? The young nation is being denied the correct political leadership at the national level (no political consensus).

Expulsion of Bhuiyan

The condition of expelled secretary general of BNP, Abdul Mannan Bhuiyan is critical. He is on life support at Square Hospital after his return from Singapore and kept in the ICU in “unconscious and breathlessness condition”. He is in fact in a coma and provided with artificial life support. Now he is not even in a condition to breathe naturally. He could not be served with chemotherapy due to such health condition.

Eve teasing in Khulna

During the summer vacation of my college, I had to take my son to his school for some days and during his school hours I used to wait a park named 'Bandhan' situated just beside the Khulna passport office and near the 'Morning Bell School' where my son is enrolled. When I used to wait in that park, I witnessed what eve teasing is and how many kinds it has.

Stop eve teasing

It is a matter of great regret that the anti-social activities are going beyond control. Especially, there has been a sharp increase in eve teasing. Already, the authorities have taken some steps to contain it , but those are not enough. So, the government should think in terms of tough action against eve teasers.

Veil and Islam

To say something about the veil system of Islam we should firstly know where it is mentioned and know in detail about it. The Holy Quran speaks about the veil for women in Sura Al-noon, verse 31, which is, in a nutshell-- all body should be covered, the only parts which can be seen are wrist of the hands and face, even face can be covered if anybody wants, though it is not mandatory. And the reason of the veil for women is mentioned in the Holy Quran in Sura Ahzab, in the verse no 59, where Allah, who knows best which things will be best for human being, says that, it, the veil, will protect them from being molested. Veil is also mentioned in the Christian scripture, Hindu scripture, and many other religious scriptures.

Dangerous chemicals

Recent newspaper reports have shown how Dangerous Chemicals are being used extensively to ripen various types of local and imported "Fruits". People are taking these fruits every day all over the country and are contracting deadly diseases. Unfortunately, the authorities have not taken any tough action but have allowed the culprits to get away lightly.

Vawal Express

The Vawal Express starts from Kamalapur Railway Station at 11:00 pm for Dewanganj via Mymensingh and Jamalpur town. Late running of this train has become a regular feature nowadays. Many service holders go to Melanda, Islampur and Dewanganj upazila by this train. The train becomes over crowded every day. The helpless passengers complete their journey with great difficulty. The most problematic thing is that the passengers who collect tickets have to travel without seat. No TC or TTE are seen in the train. If they do their duty the passengers with tickets could make their journey with comfort. On the other hand, the government could get a lot of revenue from ticket selling.

The fullness of a patriot

It was a pleasure to read Syed Badrul Ahsan's piece on Dr. Kamal Hossain (July 14). Arguably, Bangladesh has never produced an internationally reputed lawyer of Hossain's calibre in contemporary times. While I have never had much sympathy for the Awami League's philosophy, the former foreign minister of ours is one Awami League stalwart whose scholarship, cosmopolitanism, and erudition set him in a class apart.

Save Bangshi

The river Bangshi , situated in Savar and Dhamrai, plays an important role for the areas concerned. Many people depend on this river for their livelihood. But it is a matter of great regret that this river is being polluted by toxic industrial waste. This poisonous water, which emerges from garment factories, is a serious threat to this river. The river's water has turned blackish.

Symbols of Islam

At present due to the virulent propaganda of international media against Islam, the religion of peace and its symbols are considered as threatening by some ignorant people who do not know about the beauty of Islam. I'm discussing just two symbols out of many--- beard and cap. These two are very important symbols by which one can easily identify a Muslim. But now if anybody has a beard and wears a cap can't get a good job in international organisations even in Bangladesh, in spite of its being a Muslim majority country.

Good decision

First of all, I would congratulate the prime minister for taking the decision to stop private practice of the government doctors in private clinics. This is a good step which will play a vital role in improving medicare services in the country.

International

Iran blames West, Israel for suicide bombings

Iran blamed the West and Israel yesterday for twin suicide bombings that killed at least 27 people, despite condemnation of the attack by the European Union, United Nations and United States.

Typhoon Conson heads for Vietnam, China toll 67

Typhoon Conson weakened to a tropical storm and headed for Vietnam yesterday after brushing the southeastern Chinese island of Hainan and pounding the Philippines, leaving at least 67 dead.

Venezuela opens Simon Bolivar's tomb to examine remains

Hugo Chavez has opened the coffin of his idol Simon Bolivar as Venezuela investigates the president's suspicions of foul play in the South American independence hero's death nearly two centuries ago.

Castro appears again, warns of war

Cuban revolutionary leader Fidel Castro took his warning of impending nuclear war to Cuba's Foreign Ministry on Friday, where he explained the reasons for his dire prediction in his fifth public appearance in 10 days. Castro's sudden re-emergence after four years in seclusion for health reasons has raised questions about his intentions, but his message has been consistent -- a devastating war is at hand if the United States, in alliance with Israel, tries to enforce international sanctions against Iran for its nuclear activities.

Two UK, two US troops killed in Afghanistan

Two British and two American soldiers have died in Taliban-style bomb attacks in Afghanistan, Nato and British authorities said yesterday.

Kashmiri women united by loss

Parvina Hangar's son was just 16 years old when she says he was abducted by Indian forces. That was almost 20 years ago, and Hangar, a simple woman with an elementary school education, did not know what to do or who to turn to. The pain of losing her son left her unable to get out of bed for months.

Taj voted most popular Asian destination

Taj Mahal, one of the Seven Wonders of the World, is grand winner of the voter's choice for most popular Asian destinations.

'Militants' kill 16 in Pak ambush

A suspected sectarian attack on a civilian convoy in a troubled tribal area of Pakistan has left 16 dead.

Australian PM announces Aug 21 polls

Australia's first female Prime Minister Julia Gillard will attempt to win a second term for her centre-left government at August 21 elections, with battle lines drawn on climate change, asylum seekers, and record-high public debt.

Hillary heads to Kabul as US war fears grow

As concerns grow about the war in Afghanistan, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is heading to South Asia on a mission aimed at refining the goals of the nearly 9-year-old conflict.

Capped Gulf of Mexico oil well 'withstands pressure'

Tests on BP's newly capped Gulf of Mexico oil well show pressure has been building up slightly as hoped with no signs of leakage, BP says.

Pak urges world to help war-ravaged economy

Pakistan yesterday urged the global community and donor agencies to help and support its poverty-stricken economy that has been ravaged by war and the cost of terrorism.

Sudan says 75 troops, 300 rebels die in Darfur strife

The Sudanese army said 75 of its troops and more than 300 fighters of the rebel Justice and Equality Movement have been killed in clashes in Darfur over the past week.

Kashmir under curfew after days of unrest

Schools, shops and offices reopened in Muslim-majority Indian Kashmir yesterday after being shut by weeks of anti-India protests but more closures loomed in the restive region.

Arts & Entertainment

Chhayanaut's yearlong celebration begins

To commemorate the 150th birth anniversary [May 8, 2011] of Rabindranath Tagore, Chhayanaut's yearlong celebration was inaugurated at National Theatre Hall of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy on July 16.

Mokammel in Sydney

It was a big thumbs up for film director Tanvir Mokammel in Down Under.

Aamir casts magic once more

Bollywood actor-filmmaker Aamir Khan appeared in a new role at the music launch of his latest production "Peepli Live"--that of playing jazz drums.

Beyond borders

Renowned Lalon singer Farida Parveen performed solo at a musical programme on July 16 at the Indira Gandhi Cultural Centre, Gulshan. The High Commission of India in Dhaka arranged the programme. Adorably known as 'Lalon Koinna', Parveen enthralled the audience with a rendition of over 25 Lalon songs.

Rain songs

A musical soiree, 'Hridoy Mandrilo', based on the rain songs of Rabindranath Tagore, entertained a huge audience at the auditorium of Zila Shilpakala Academy on Friday evening.

Wedding bells for Farooki-Tisha

After five years of low-key romance, filmmaker Mostofa Sarwar Farooki and actress Nusrat Imroz Tisha got married on July 16. The grand ceremony was held at a local hotel. Celebrities from different sectors attended the ceremony.

Capturing the essence of two greats

The Institute of Fine Arts (IFA), Pabna celebrated the Rabindra-Nazrul Jayanti amid festivity in the organisation's premises on Thursday night. The programme was organised to mark the 149th birth anniversary of Kabiguru Rabindranath Tagore and the 111th birth anniversary of National Poet Kazi Nazrul Islam. The function featured a discussion and cultural programmes.

“Kagojer Ghar” on ATN Bangla tonight

ATN Bangla will air TV serial “Kagojer Ghar” tonight at 8:00 pm.

OP-ED

Same living, higher counting

I had been to Vietnam recently. In no time I became a millionaire. When I changed dollars I received Dongs (Vietnam's currency) in millions -- $1 equal to about 19,000 Vietnamese Dongs. The notes are of high denomination -- 100,000 or 200,000 Dongs. If one counts in terms of dongs prices are staggeringly high. Conversion into dollars, or even takas, is often mind-boggling.

Only 960 years left for Bhutto's war

THE Bhuttos, and Bhutto-led governments, seem lost in a rut that has become brittle and boring through over-use. Their only measure of Pakistani patriotism is the level of hysteria that they can simulate against India.

Teachers' evaluation at JU

THE Business Studies faculty of Jahangirnagar University (JU) is one of five faculties in the university. It is less than a year old and has just completed a semester. Vice-Chancellor Dr. Shariff Enamul Kabir requested me to take charge of the faculty until a suitable person could be found.

Does Islam require a Muslim woman to veil her face?

RECENTLY, there has been a spate of letters in the letters to the editor section of the DS on the Belgian ban on burqa. From mufti to barrister, readers joined in to register their support for the burqa on various grounds.

Discouraging small poultry farmers

THE Livestock Department issued letters to all thana and district livestock officers saying that it had fixed the prices of poultry chicks sold by hatcheries at Tk.30 for broilers and Tk.32 for layers. This move follows a year of chick shortages brought about by bird flu outbreaks and political lobbying by some farmers for lower prices.


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