The Daily Star

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Saturday, December 20, 2014


News of: Tuesday, 20th of July, 2010

Front Page

HC warns against custodial deaths

The High Court yesterday issued a stern warning to the government that it must take legal action against policemen involved in custodial deaths after investigating the cases with non-police personnel.

AL asks BNP to send name of party rep

Ruling Awami League has requested Opposition Leader Khaleda Zia to nominate a BNP lawmaker for a high-powered all-party parliamentary committee to be formed by Thursday to amend the country's constitution.

No bar to sending cases filed for crimes in '71

Reviewing cases filed against Jamaat-e-Islami leaders with different police stations in connection with crimes in 1971, the home ministry yesterday found no legal bar to sending the cases to the International Crimes Tribunal for trial.

Probe finds lapses in BG Press security

The probe committee formed by the Bangladesh Government (BG) Press authorities found security flaws and neglect in frisking employees as reasons behind the recent question leak.

Environment courts at all districts

The cabinet yesterday approved the draft of the Environment Court Act 2010 that provides for five years' imprisonment or a fine of Tk 5 lakh or both for environment polluters.

AL moves to close gap with grassroots

The Awami League high command has moved to end the disappointment of grassroots level leaders of the party over the gap between them and party lawmakers as well as between the party and the government.

62 dead in Indian train crash

At least 62 people were killed and over 92 were wounded when an express train rammed into the rear of another train waiting at Sainthia station of West Bengal yesterday.

HC asks police, Rab to find Alam

The High Court yesterday directed the inspector general of police and director general of Rapid Action Battalion to take effective measures immediately to find out ward councillor Chowdhury Alam, who has been missing since June 25.

PM for 15-year waiver of IP rights for medicines

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday urged the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) for another 15 years' waiver of Bangladeshi pharmaceuticals from intellectual property (IP) rights regime.

JMB now runs without chief

Banned Islamist outfit Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) is now without a chief and sura committee, according to the statement of detained JMB leaders Bhagne Shahid and Jamai Rafiq.

Affected villagers besiege coal mine

Villagers affected by land subsidence due to underground mining besieged Barapukuria Coal Mine Company Ltd (BCMCL) for an indefinite period from yesterday as their deadline for compensation and rehabilitation expired without any progress.

Roksana's dream shattered in fire

Roksana Akhter came to the capital from her village and enrolled at Government Titumir College three years ago to fulfil the dreams of her family.

Stringent law for telcos passed

The parliament yesterday passed a bill making the provisions of telecom law tough to punish telecom operators and other ICT-based companies for specific wrongdoings with an increase of fine up to Tk 300 crore from Tk 10 lakh.

BB for power price hike

Bangladesh Bank (BB) has suggested the government to hike power price keeping separate tariff structure for the low-income group.

OMS of rice before Ramadan

Amidst rice price spiral, the Ministry of Food and Disaster Management has decided to launch open market sale (OMS) of rice ahead of the Ramadan in the capital to keep the price stable.

Drive against unfit vehicles faces setback

Drive against unfit motor vehicles in the city faces setback as owners continue to keep their run-down vehicles off the road to avoid being penalised.

BCL men go on rampage at Mymensingh

Activists of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) vandalised properties on Mymensingh Polytechnic Institute (MPI) yesterday demanding an "admission quota" for their adherents.

Jamaat leaders remanded in 3 cases

Four Jamaat-e-Islami leaders including its secretary general Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mojahid were taken yesterday on a three-day remand each in three criminal cases filed with different police stations on different charges.

Telecom secy, BTRC chief face contempt rule

The High Court yesterday issued a contempt of court rule against the post and telecommunications secretary, and the chairman of Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BRTC) for ignoring its order regarding resumption of operation of a land phone company, RanksTel.

Barricade on Buriganga bridge for toll withdrawal

Hundreds of agitating CNG drivers and rickshaw pullers barricaded second Buriganga bridge for three hours yesterday demanding the withdrawal of bridge toll for CNG and non-motorised vehicles.

Teenager held for killing at Goran

Police arrested a teenager yesterday evening from city's Goran area in connection with the killing of a worker of Bangladesh Chhatra League Sunday night.

Pak-Afghan transit agreement signed

Afghanistan and Pakistan have signed a key trade agreement allowing Afghan lorries to use a land route through Pakistan to carry goods to India.

US 'concerns' over Pak-China nuclear agreement

The United States has conveyed its "concerns" to Islamabad over China's sale of two civilian nuclear reactors to Pakistan, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told a press conference yesterday.

Editorial

Caring for those challenged

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has stated in very clear terms that welfare of the physically challenged is high on her government's agenda. She has issued a directive to the authorities concerned to make sure that such people get jobs as per the quota reserved for them. It is a welcome move but there is so much more to be done, especially among the children.

Stop Biman from being a milch cow

The civil aviation minister's remarks on the state of Biman in particular, and tourism in general in Bangladesh, say it all. In his rather rueful comments one noticed more than an element of resignation when at a recent seminar on civil aviation and tourism he said that vested quarters have made Biman what it is today -- a symbol of inefficiency and failure. Its viability as a commercial undertaking has been greatly dented, according to him, by the corrupt and dishonest practices of some powerful quarters, both inside and outside Biman.

Sports

Abahani roll over Ajax

Pakistani penalty-corner specialist Sohail Abbas slammed four goals including a hattrick to power title-aspirants Abahani to a massive 9-1 win over Ajax Sporting Club in the Super League encounter of the Green Delta Insurance Premier Division Hockey League at the Maulana Bhasani National Stadium yesterday.

When will the academy come functional?

It is often told that right now Bangladesh cricket has been suffering from a lack of back-up players which is portraying a gloomy picture of the game in the country. So much so that the pipeline which the country uses to produce future cricketers has gathered rust due to lack of activities from the sport's governing body -- the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB).

Sealed in blood by Sachin

Worship of cricket's "little master", Sachin Tendulkar, is set to cross a new boundary, as a luxury book publisher brings out a special edition of his autobiography made with the batsman's blood.

Yousuf coming back?

Former Pakistan captain Mohammad Yousuf is ready to come out of retirement sooner rather than later, further broadening the possibility of an appearance at some point for Pakistan in the summer.

Court tells BHF to decide on Club Cup final

A Dhaka court has directed Bangladesh Hockey Federa-tion (BHF) to take decision on the Dhaka Bank Club Cup hockey final between Mohammedan Sporting Club and Usha Krira Charka according to the tournament bylaws in consultation with the tournament committee and members of the federation after the latter had filed a case seeking justice.

BD-Scots ODI washed away

The lone one-day international between Bangladesh and Scotland at Titwood in Glasgow yesterday was abandoned without a ball being bowled due to incessant rain. After a couple of inspections, the umpires decided to call off the game at around 2pm local time as there was no sign of rain to ease.

Day Two rained off

The second day's play in the first Test between India and Sri Lanka on Monday was abandoned without a ball being bowled due to bad weather.

Fall from grace

Dean Jones's admission of fathering a child outside his marriage has cost him the Victorian Father of the Year title, which the former Australian cricketer won in 2007.

Giggs doesn't rate City

Ryan Giggs says Manchester United are unperturbed by the latest influx of expensive signings at Manchester City and that the pressure is on their rivals to at least qualify for the Champions League next season.

Cole off to Liverpool

Former Chelsea midfielder Joe Cole has agreed sign for Liverpool on a free transfer, subject to a medical.

Pep in pursuit of Cesc

Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola will not give up on signing Francesc Fabregas from Arsenal despite Arsene Wenger insisting all the talk over the proposed transfer must stop.

Jol all set for Fulham

Fulham are confident Martin Jol will be appointed as their new manager within days, after the Dutchman signalled he is willing to leave Ajax and move to Craven Cottage. Negotiations with Jol and Ajax continued tonight and although Fulham will travel to Sweden tomorrow for a pre-season training camp without a manager, the club are hopeful that Roy Hodgson's successor will be in place for the friendly against Halmstad on Thursday.

Crime still on SA agenda

As South Africa's World Cup euphoria dies down, immigrants say they're worried that the nation's willingness to embrace foreigners could also run out.

Indian deal for Blackburn?

An Indian entrepreneur is close to clinching a deal to buy English Premier League club Blackburn Rovers worth between 54 and 69 million dollars, a source familiar with the matter has told AFP.

Bookmaker Paul

A Russian betting firm wants to buy soothsaying World Cup octopus Paul and hire him as a bookmaker with a salary of 5,000 dollars a month, local media reported here Monday.

Tech not on agenda

Goalline technology will not be discussed by soccer's law-makers in Wales this week, despite an assurance from FIFA president Sepp Blatter during the World Cup that it would be.

Di Maria excited by challenge

New Real Madrid winger Angel di Maria admits he could not believe Jose Mourinho was interested in signing him and claims he will always be grateful to the Portuguese coach for having brought him to the Santiago Bernabeu.

Another win for Semenya

South African world champion Caster Semenya crowned her comeback week following an 11-month absence caused by a gender controversy with an easy victory in the 800m at a low-key meeting on Sunday.

Aussies on right track

Australia cricket captain Ricky Ponting is of the view that the bowling performance of all-rounders Marcus North and Shane Watson in the recently concluded Lord's Test against Pakistan highlights the increasing versatility of the squad's bowling attack in the run-up to this year's Ashes series.

Schleck, Contador play mind games

The battle for Tour de France victory took a twisted turn at the Ax 3-Domaines on Sunday when yellow jersey holder Andy Schleck and defending champion Alberto Contador played mind games on the final climb.

Lorgat, Hussey don't buy split-innings

Cricket Australia (CA) might be keen to foist split-innings one-dayers on the supporters but their own players are not yet convinced the format will work -- and neither is the International Cricket Council (ICC).

Almagro takes Swedish Open

Spain's Nicolas Almagro came through a tough three-setter to beat top seed and defending champion Robin Soderling in the final of the claycourt ATP Swedish Open on Sunday.

'Pakistan will bounce back'

Pakistan coach Waqar Younis is confident that his team will bounce back in the second Test match against Australia, starting at Headingley from Wednesday.

BDCA names new ad-hoc committee

Bangladesh Deaf Cricket Association (BDCA) has formed an ad-hoc committee with Firoz Ahmed as its convener.

Kaneria out, Ajmal in?

Pakistan may drop leg-spinner Danish Keneria and bring in off-spinner Saeed Ajmal for the second and final Test against Australia, starting at Headingley from Wednesday.

Swann in trouble

England cricketer Graeme Swann has been charged with drink driving, police said Monday.

Business

BB tightens control on credit

The new monetary policy announced yesterday continued its dual objectives of maintaining inflationary pressure and supporting the economic growth, but left rates unchanged.

Rangunia EPZ eyes green light

The government is expected to approve the operations and land acquisition of Rangunia Export Processing Zone tomorrow, which will be home to 300 industrial units.

Dawn Securities suspended on fraud charges

Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) yesterday suspended the trading activities of Dawn Securities, a stockbroker, for allegedly scamming Tk 9.5 crore from its clients.

SEC moves to detect illegal private placement business

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) yesterday formed a committee to detect any irregularities in private placement business in the capital market.

German company boosts Asian presence

German auto parts group Schaeffler said Monday it plans to invest 300 million euros (390 million dollars) boosting its presence in Asia.

Use IP to facilitate development

Policymakers of 15 least developed countries (LDCs) yesterday began discussions on how intellectual property (IP) could be used as a tool for economic development.

WIPO to help Bangladesh for intellectual property

World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) will help Bangladesh host an international workshop on the intellectual property right to create mass awareness.

IP rights deal shifts into focus

Least-developed countries (LDCs) yesterday demanded extension of an agreement on intellectual property rights by 15 more years for the protection of their own markets.

Boeing, Airbus await plane orders at Farnborough

The Farnborough International Airshow kicked off on Monday with Boeing and Airbus expected to win big orders for their planes in the face of rising competition.

Hungary pledges more reforms after IMF, EU demands

Hungary's government said Sunday it would plough on with deficit-slashing reforms demanded by the IMF and EU, and aimed to become Central Europe's most stable country "as quickly as possible".

Exports miss target

Exports fell 7.93 percent short of the target set for the last fiscal year, according to Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) data released yesterday.

British curry houses in trouble

Spicy, steaming hot, scooped up in naan bread and washed down with a cold beer, there are few dishes more favoured by the British than the curry for a takeaway or a late-night meal after the pubs shut.

Economists say recovery continues, but pace slows

Economists say the US recovery continued during the second quarter of this year with more businesses hiring workers and fewer cutting jobs, but the pace of growth has slowed, a new survey shows.

Bharti says telco gear curbs easing; iPhone 4 by Oct

India's curbs on import of telecoms equipment are easing, a senior executive in the country's leading mobile operator Bharti Airtel said on Monday.

Corporate Briefs

JAMUNA BANK
The bank has set the record date for August 2 in connection with changing denomination of shares from Tk 100 to Tk 10 and market lot from 50 to 250 shares.

Oil dips

Oil prices dipped in Asian trade Monday as sentiment was dampened by weak US economic data that has spurred concerns about slow demand in the world's largest energy consumer, analysts said.

Nokia Siemens buys $1.2b of Motorola assets

Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) is buying Motorola Inc's telecom network equipment business, boosting its position in North America and taking number two spot in the cut-throat mobile gear market.

HK to tighten regulation on credit rating agencies

Hong Kong's financial watchdog said Monday that it planned to tighten monitoring of the city's credit rating agencies to meet new standards set by the European Union and other overseas jurisdictions.

Philips says lifestyle goods boost profits six-fold

Products for lifestyle and lighting, and emerging markets, helped electrical equipment and electronics giant Philips to boost quarterly net profit six-fold, it said on Monday.

Unilever sells Italian frozen foods arm

Anglo-Dutch food and cosmetics giant Unilever said on Monday it would sell its Italian frozen foods business for 805 million euros (1.04 billion dollars).

Metropolitan

Massive irregularities in canal excavation

Water Resources Minister Ramesh Chandra Sen yesterday in parliament alleged that massive irregularities took place in food for work programme to excavate small rivers and canals in different parts of the country.

Dhaka to take firm stance

State Minister for Environment and Forests Dr Hasan Mahmud yesterday urged members of Bangladesh delegation in the UNFCCC climate talks to take strong position for Copenhagen Accord as well as properly articulate the vulnerability of the country.

'Fix Tk 5,000 as minimum wage for garment workers'

Ganotantrik Bam Morcha, an alliance of left-leaning political parties, yesterday warned the government of tougher movement if Tk 5,000 wasn't set as minimum wage for garment workers by July 28.

BNP wants 2 more JS body chairs

Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) has again demanded the ruling party give them two more chairs of the parliamentary standing committees.

HC rule on govt to explain

The High Court (HC) yesterday issued a rule upon the government to explain within four weeks why formation of present election commission of Muktijoddha Sangsad Command Council (MSCC) and holding its elections under this commission should not be declared illegal.

Taliban call to kill collaborators

Mullah Omar, the leader of the Afghan Taliban, has reportedly issued a new directive in which he calls on his fighters to capture and kill any Afghan working for foreign forces.

Char people suffer from malnourishment

Noorjahan, on her way to buy a soap, caught our eyes. Mother of five, she is 33 years old but her devastated health gave her a look as if she was no younger than 45.

TTI to support CPD, Institute of Governance Studies of Brac University

Think Tank Initiative (TTI) has recently selected 16 independent policy research institutions in South Asia for providing institutional capacity building support, said a press release.

40pc fertilisers adulterated

About 40 per cent urea and non-urea fertilisers available in the market is adulterated and contains highest level of heavy metal that can cause serious health hazards to the people and affect food production and soil fertility in the long run.

SC upholds HC bail to Mahmudur in two cases

The Supreme Court (SC) yesterday upheld two High Court orders granting bail to detained Mahmudur Rahman, acting editor of the daily Amar Desh, in two criminal cases.

Digital population census in Mar

Bangladesh is going to use digital enumeration maps and a unique geo-coding system for the first time in holding the 5th Population and Housing Census in the country.

Wife murderer gets life-term

A court here yesterday sentenced a person to life-term imprisonment for killing his wife at Sitakunda upazila in the district last year.

Polluters fined in Ctg

Environment department yesterday launched a drive against pollution in the port city and fined polluters.

3 get Water Journalism Fellowship

Three reporters received Water Journalism Fellowship 2009 yesterday for their reports on river water pollution.

Govt working to enforce copyright act

Information Minister Abul Kalam Azad said yesterday the government is working relentlessly for enforcing the copyright act.

Talipalm will 'live on'

Dhaka University authorities will plant saplings of the world's last naturally grown Talipalm tree, Corypha Taliera Roxburgh, on the campus today.

Develop system for uninterrupted fuel supply to power plants

Energy Secretary Mezbah Uddin yesterday directed to develop a system to ensure uninterrupted supply of fuel oil to different oil-run power plants.

Give financial, political power to local govts

Governance Advocacy Forum (GAF), a coalition of 35 non-government organisations (NGOs), yesterday called for decentralisation of administrational and financial and political power to the local government units to ensure development and reach its benefits to the people.

Tk 84cr to improve city sewerage system

The Government is going to set up 21.3km of new sewerage pipes and six more pumps under a project costing Tk84 crore for development of existing sewerage system in the city.

'Ensure non-formal education to create scope for 40m'

About 40 million people will be deprived of education unless non-formal education (NFE) is ensured to the people of the country, speakers said at a workshop

3 killed in road accidents

At least three people, including a child, were killed in separate road accidents in Chapainawabganj, Natore and Nilpahamari yesterday and on Sunday.

Ecnec may okay 3 dev projects today

The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecenc) sits today to consider three development projects including upgrading a road into a regional highway.

RU girl sexually harassed

Female students of Mannujan residential hall of Rajshahi University

Defence ministry starts tree plantation

Ministry of Defence inaugurated tree plantation programme yesterday, says an ISPR release.

Korean envoy meets DU VC

Taiyoung Cho, Ambassador of the Republic of Korea in Dhaka called on Dhaka University Vice-Chancellor Prof AAMS Arefin Siddique at the latter's office yesterday.

National

Jamuna devours 180 feet of Sirajganj dyke

At least 180 feet area of Sirajganj town protection embankment collapsed yesterday triggering panic among the townspeople.

Ripon to be quizzed in Polash murder case

A judicial magistrate's court in Sylhet yesterday granted two-day remand for Chhatra League leader Abdur Rahim Ripon for quizzing in the case for killing Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) activist Udayendu Singha Polash.

5 confess to doing criminal acts, 5 others remanded

Five arrested activists of banned Islamist outfit Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) confessed to their involvement in serial blasts on August 17 in 2005 and other criminal acts before a Gaibandha court under Section 164 on Sunday evening.

15 Jamaat-Shibir activists remanded in Satkhira

Fifteen Jamaat and Shibir men, arrested in Satkhira on July 15, were placed on a three-day remand while charge framing against 47 activists of the two organisations in Khulna was deferred to July 25 yesterday.

Two Hizbut Towhid women held

Kalihati police arrested two women activists of Islamist outfit Hizbut Towhid Bangladesh on Sunday evening.

Biral upazila chairman gets 2-yr RI

A Dinajpur court yesterday sentenced Biral upazila parishad chairman to two years rigorous imprisonment (RI) for damaging portrait of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and assaulting the UNO of Biral upazila.

Orphans revolt again as 6 fellows expelled

Children of Panchagarh Shishu Paribar revolted again on Sunday and barricaded Panchagarh-Dhaka highway protesting expulsion of six fellows in connection with an incident at the orphanage about three months ago.

Jamaat leader 'advocate' of war crime trial

"The war criminals who killed people indiscriminately and committed crimes against humanity during the Liberation War must face trial. The government has started the process and the trial would be completed if God wishes."

Criminals kill Sylhet businessman

Armed criminals chopped a businessman and AL leader to death in Companiganj upazila Sunday night.

Date for 'further probe' report deferred again

Divisional Speedy Trial Tribunal Judge of Sylhet yesterday deferred the date for filing the report of the 'further investigation' in Kibria murder case to July 25.

Robbers loot 5 houses

Robbers looted valuables worth over Tk 3 lakh from five houses in Betagi upazila early Sunday.

Jubo League man stabbed to death

A Jubo League activist was stabbed to death in Sonaimuri railway station area of the district on Sunday night.

Pirates abduct 14 fishermen

Pirates of Sunderbans abducted 14 fishermen from 14 boats in Marabaghi area under Sharankhola police station on Sunday evening and demanded Tk 3.5 lakh ransom.

Rapist gets life

A court here on Sunday sentenced a man to life imprisonment for violating a girl. The court also fined the convict, Tauhidur Rahman Biraj, son of Hamsed Ali of Biswanathpur village under Shibganj upazila, Tk 20,000, in default, he is to suffer another year in jail. According to the prosecution, Biraj raped a girl of the village on the night of December 1 in 2004. Later, the village people in arbitration asked Biraj to marry the girl, which he refused. After his refusal, the victim filed a case with Shibganj Police Station. After examining the records and witnesses Judge of the Women and Children Repression Prevention Tribunal-2 Arup Kumer Goswami pronounced the verdict.

Fugitive convict arrested

A fugitive convict and leader of a gang of inter-district robbers was arrested at Manikpur village in Araihazar upazila early Sunday. The arrestee was identified as Habibullah, 40. Acting on a tip-off, Araihazar police raided the village and arrested him at around 4:00am. Police said Habibullah remained absconding since a court here in 1994 had sentenced him to 15 years rigorous imprisonment in a robbery case. Another report from Jhalakati adds: Police arrested three people in the town's Gorostan road area on charge of stealing transformers on Saturday night. The arrested were identified as Mohammad Shahid, 40, of Chandkathi area in the town, Babul Chandra Mistri, 38, of Aura village in Kathalia upazila and Mohammad Bahadur Hawlader, 25, of Pingri village in Razapur upazila.

International

Washington Post exposes US 'intelligence flaws'

Secret US intelligence gathering has grown so much since 9/11 no-one knows its exact cost, nor how many people are involved, the Washington Post reports.

Mumbai: The Indian writer's New York

Why is India's financial and entertainment capital, Mumbai (Bombay) the favourite muse of Indian authors writing in English? The BBC's Soutik Biswas finds out.

Maoist leader's death 'serious blow' to peace

Swami Agnivesh, who made efforts to be a peace negotiator between the government and Maoists, said here yesterday the killing of Maoist politburo member Cherukuri Rajkumar, alias Azad was a "serious blow" to peace initiatives between the government and the Maoists.

Nine years, nine confces

The Afghan government has a long list of demands for the international donors who will gather in Kabul today for the ninth such conference since the start of the Afghanistan war in 2001.

Jem to sign 'child soldier' deal

The Justice and Equality Movement (Jem), a Sudanese rebel group, has agreed to sign a landmark deal with the United Nations on the protection of children caught up in the Darfur conflict.

Indonesian Muslims facing Africa on prayers

People in the world's most populous Muslim nation have been facing Africa -- not Makkah -- while praying.

Myanmar marks Martyrs' Day

Myanmar's junta held a small ceremony amid tight security yesterday to mark the anniversary of the 1947 assassination of nine independence heroes, including the father of democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi.

UN chief urges Karzai to act on good governance

UN chief Ban Ki-moon urged Afghan President Hamid Karzai to unveil "concrete" steps at a donors conference today to improve governance and promote national reconciliation in his war-wracked country.

Arts & Entertainment

Bangalee Shamagra’s exhibition on Dr. Shahidullah

On the occasion of the 125th birth anniversary of writer, linguist and philologist Dr. Muhammad Shahidullah, Bangalee Shamagra Museum (BSM) is holding an exhibition at its gallery on Elephant Road, Dhaka

“Kajol Rekha”: Giasuddin Selim delves into folklore with his new film

After his blockbuster “Monpura,” TV play and film director Giasuddin Selim is starting his new film. The Daily Star recently caught up with the auteur. Excepts from the interview:

Oitijhya celebrates 10th anniversary

Publication house Oitijhya celebrates its 10th anniversary this year. To commemorate the occasion, Oitijhya has arranged a book sale at the Central Public Library premises, Shahbagh, according to a press release. The fortnight-long event began on July 15 and will continue till the end of this month. Special discounts are offered on books at the sale.

OP-ED

Militancy: Bridging gap in social resistance

THE manner in which obscurantist groups continue to organise and reorganise, maintain contacts amongst themselves, organise meetings in various residential quarters and mosques and madrasas, publish jehadi books and copy CDs, and provide training on making explosives and firing guns, including the AK-47, is mind boggling indeed. In a crowded country like Bangladesh, with virtually no place to hide, these people manage to stay un-noticed for years together. No doubt, they can do it because of lack of social resistance.

Inculcating political tolerance

IT would not be an exaggeration if one says that the repressive government actions against the leaders and activists of the main opposition during observance of hartal and human chain recently have displayed all the ugly signs of political intolerance. A new dimension has been added to the customary and callous actions of successive regimes in treating political opponents.

Today's victor may be tomorrow's vanquished

SPAIN'S victorious World Cup squad received a tumultuous welcome on their return to Madrid. About one million people were reported to have lined a five-mile route in the Spanish capital to welcome and applaud the victors. The team met the Spanish royal family and the prime minister.

Accountants don't write novels

YOUR humble narrator, a novelist who also writes columns, has fled from the newspapers temporarily to write some books.Back in the book world, I was reminded of the time earlier this year when I was featured at a literary festival in Shanghai the same weekend as Scott Turow, the lawyer who wrote Presumed Innocent, a wonderful thriller. It got me thinking. Books from lawyers like him, John Grisham and David Baldacci fill the bestseller lists. Other professionals, like doctors, write too: The Kite Runner for example, by that unforgettable writer, wotsisname.

Science & Life

Cat that mimics its prey

ANY natural forestry is a place of absolute wonder. Not only from aesthetical point of view but also it is full of surprises and houses a vast array of mammal splendors. And when it comes to a magnificent natural setting like that of the great Amazon, one can surely expect nothing less of extraordinary. In a fascinating turn of events, scientists from the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and Federal University of Amazonas (UFAM) have documented a wild cat species, disguising its own voice, imitating the call of its intended victim. This astonishing behavior was recorded in the Amazonian forests of the Reserva Florestal Adolpho Ducke in Brazil and the wild cat concerned here was a Margay, a solitary and nocturnal spotted cat native to Central and South America. It's intended prey, a small, squirrel-sized monkey known as pied tamarin. It is important to note that, this is the first recorded instance of wild cat species in the Americas mimicking the calls of its prey. This discovery is quite remarkable in the sense that this particular observation by the scientists have confirmed the scientific community what, up until now had been only sketchy reports from Amazonian tribesmen of wild cat species like jaguars and pumas, actually mimicking primates, rodents, agoutis and other species in order to draw them within the striking range. The findings were published in the June issue of Neotropical Primates. According to Fabio Rohe of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) who is also one of the authors of the paper, “Cats are known for their physical agility, but this vocal manipulation of prey species indicates a psychological cunning which merits further study”.

Nanoelectronic gemstone

DIAMONDS, gemstones have always amazed us with their colors. Now in the era of nanotechnology, it's the Quantum Dot (QD) that is dazzling our eyes. QDs are semiconductor nanostructures, 25 billionths of a meter in diameter, which can confine electrons in three dimensions and emit light when exposed to ultraviolet radiation or X-ray. About 50 thousandth the width of a human hair, these nano-scale gems are built by confining electrons in some insulating material(s) around a central, well-conducting region. Although they can be composed of hundreds of atoms, quantum dots in many ways behave almost as if they were single gigantic atoms. This enables the study of quantum mechanical effects on a length scale that is around 100-500 times larger than the pure atomic scale.

Brain cells that help us breathe

Star-shape brain cells previously thought to take a back seat in terms of the brain's activity might play a key role in controlling breathing, a new study in rats suggests.

Discovery mode of mind

JUST as most efficient transfer of momentum takes place between objects of identical masses, the most efficient interaction in the field of scientific creativity is likely to happen between countries that have more or less similar footings in scientific background, cultural heritage and economic development. For interaction, special closeness of course is another important factor, the countries of Asia pacific nicely satisfy their criteria to make the idea of establishing an interactive science discovery centre. We believe that human mind can interact much better in the field of science, specially, in the discovery mode than when they are fighting in the mode of hatred and suspicion with each other.

Beneath that blazing facade

IN the pantheon of cosmic celebrities, the sun is one true superstar. It's not only the Earth's prime source of light and heat it also fuels the greenery that makes breathing possible, keeps time by setting the body's daily rhythms and spits out charged particles that create the beauty of the aurora borealis.

Deep Smoker

Captured by high-resolution cameras aboard a robotic submersible, mineral-rich water spews from hydrothermal vents in this picture of Kawio Barat, a massive undersea volcano off Indonesia.

What are quarks and gluons?

For close to three decades, nucleons (protons and neutrons) were considered to be the ultimate subatomic particles. As scientists delved deeper, they detected shadows of yet another layer of matter inside nucleons. Unable so far to crack open a nucleon and bring out one of these shadowy objects for observation and measurement, they named them quarks. It is believed that one up and one down quark make up the proton and neutron. Quarks are held together by a force dubbed the chromo force, represented by particles named gluons, which are just as unseen as quarks.



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