The Daily Star

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Wednesday, September 24, 2014


News of: Sunday, 13th of February, 2011

Front Page

Govt on food alert

The government will increase subsidy for food grains and agri inputs by 38 percent in the current fiscal year to check price hike of food grains.

Egypt regains its dignity

We in Bangladesh feel a special affinity with the people of Egypt as we watch them celebrate Mubarak's fall. As they regain freedom, self respect and dignity, we shared their every step as we were there. Obviously our events of 1971 are (were) far deeper and bigger to be comparable. However, closer to the present events in Egypt was our victory over autocracy in 1990 that saw the end of another army man's rule. Like Mubarak, Ershad had robbed us of freedom and of dignity, but fortunately did not (better still, could not) rule for 30 years.

Cairo at ease

Egypt's new military leadership yesterday vowed to pave the way for democracy and abide by international treaties as the hopeful country celebrated victory on the day after Hosni Mubarak's overthrow.

Mode of execution now under question

A parliamentary body's decision to introduce a bill to reinstate the constitution's articles repealed or altered by the first military regime has raised questions about execution of the two-decade old Supreme Court verdict on the eighth amendment.

Lead-up picks up pace

The World Cup is now all but underway, with the first batch of warm-up matches completed yesterday across the three host nations -- Bangladesh, India and Sri Lanka.

Come Falgun, come colours

The seasons circle the earth. Something of a spring is to be deciphered in their orbit, for that is one way of observing their graces, their movements, as they add substance to life on this planet, indeed to the concept of time and space. And that precisely is what you notice this morning on your doorsteps. There is a sudden profusion of colours around you, that timeless scented presence of flowers in a season redolent of the floral and therefore the melodious. We speak of Pahela Falgun, of Bashanta, of that celebration of life which has consistently fortified our belief in the beauty of life, in its resilience.

ETP exists, but inactive

The extent of air, water and land pollution in Kumkumadi village of Dhaka under Ashulia Police Station is too much to be lost sight of. Relentless dumping of untreated industrial waste has not only destroyed canals and paddy fields but also continued to expose villagers to serious health hazards.

Check price spiral

A number of ruling Awami League leaders yesterday asked the government to take immediate steps to bring down the prices of essentials, especially rice.

Killers out on bail

Two daughters of the couple slain at Gulshan in the capital are apprehending attacks from the alleged killers out on bail.

Essentials' market being manipulated

A group of business people is creating an artificial crisis in the essentials' market by increasing the prices, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said yesterday.

Bus crushes schoolboy

A rash driven bus crushed a school going boy under its wheels near Radio Colony at Savar when the child was returning home with his mother yesterday.

Tremor jolts city

A mild earthquake shook the capital and other parts of the country yesterday afternoon for the third time this month causing panic among people.

PM's name prompts power-cut

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday faced an embarrassing situation brought about by a power failure while attending the 52nd convocation of the Institute of Engineers Bangladesh (IEB).

Brac Bank comes in aid of Hena's family

The Brac Bank has come forward to donate Tk 1 lakh to the family of Hena Akter, the girl whipped to death in Shariatpur last month, following a report published in The Daily Star on February 11 headlined “Double Blow for family”.

Unity all around for Bangla

Vociferous protests marked a meeting of the Youth League soon after Nazimuddin made his remarks on the language issue on January 27, 1952.

Create right atmosphere at Sangsad

Leader of the Opposition Khaleda Zia yesterday stressed on creating proper atmosphere in parliament paving the way for playing role by all.

Delhi nods to 3 lakh tonnes rice sale

India has agreed to sell Bangladesh three lakh tonnes of rice, and the two countries have finalised the price and quality of the staple and the mode of shipment.

'Criminal' killed in 'shootout'

An alleged criminal was killed in a "shootout" between his cohorts and Rapid Action Battalion members at the city's Pashchim Bhashantek early yesterday.

Arrest order issued for Musharraf

A Pakistani anti-terrorism court yesterday issued an arrest warrant for former president Pervez Musharraf over the assassination of ex-prime minister Benazir Bhutto, a public prosecutor said.

Stalker jailed

A mobile court in Tarail upazila on Friday evening sentenced a stalker to three months in jail for harassing a girl.

Visually challenged too not left out

Visually impaired Jannatul Nayeem could hardly wait to get her hands on the books as this year the Amar Ekushey Boi Mela displayed books in Braille for the very first time.

Editorial

Hosni Mubarak goes, finally

After Tunisia, it is now Egypt that has accomplished the seemingly impossible task of removing a long-serving autocrat from power. The fall of Hosni Mubarak eighteen days after Egyptians began to come together on January 25 to bring his regime down is remarkable not just for the people of Egypt but also for the region as a whole. Rare has been the instance of people rising in revolt against entrenched regimes. With both Tunisians and Egyptians now having proved the determination with which they can do away with governments that do not fulfill their expectations, it is clear that a new era of popular participation in the politics of the Middle East is at hand.

For better managed hospitals

Conditions of most of the public hospitals in Dhaka and elsewhere in the country are far from satisfactory. Pitiful service, acute shortage of beds, scarcity and lack of maintenance of equipment in almost all departments, notoriety of lower class employees and the brokers, unsanitary conditions and frequent non-availability of nurses and duty doctors make for the general scenario in our hospitals.

Sports

Perfect practice for Tigers

Bangladesh made a confident start handing a nine-wicket defeat to Canada in their first lead-up match to the World Cup at the Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium yesterday.

'Don't take Pakistan lightly'

Shahid Afridi's eyebrow titled, head arched and posed smile at the cameras during photocall might have cracked up the crowded press conference in Mirpur, but the Pakistani captain left behind a steely message for all: underestimate us at your own peril.

Their WC!

Chaity is a computer science student at Premier University and has come along with her younger brother to enjoy the warm up match between Canada and Bangladesh. Traffic police stopped their vehicle at Sagarika. And they had to walk about one and a half kilometres to get to the Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium.

Beware of underdogs

When India did the unthinkable with an upset win over West Indies in the 1983 World Cup final in England, little did they know they would also fall prey to minnows' hunger for success in future.

No upset in warm-ups

All the Test teams involved in yesterday's round of World Cup warm-up matches, with the probable exception of New Zealand, came out on top against their less fancied rivals.

Fatullah still a concern

There is a lot of work left to be done around the Fatullah Cricket Stadium, venue for two warm-up matches of the World Cup.

Murali's one last shy

Record-break-ing Sri Lankan bowler Muttiah Muralidaran goes into his fourth and final World Cup praying that he ends his glorious international career on a high.

BU-F'ganj share spoils

Brothers Union and Farshganj SC played out a 1-1 draw in their Bangladesh League encounter at the Birshreshtha Mostafa Kamal Stadium in Kamalapur yesterday.

Masses left in the dark

While some 12,000 fortunate spectators inside the Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium yesterday were treated to Shakib Al Hasan's guile and Tamim Iqbal's blaze, millions around the country were left frustrated at not finding an avenue to the cricket match; either through television or the radio or live streaming on the internet.

PCB appeals Aamer's ban

Pakistan cricket chief Ijaz Butt has officially requested a review over fast-rising paceman Mohammad Aamer's five-year ban on charges of corruption.

Mukti Sangha reach Club Cup final

Mukti Shangha won their semifinal match of the inter-district Club Cup cricket tournament yesterday in Kushtia.

Siddons, so far so good

When the Tigers run on to the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium's pristine outfield next Saturday to take on India in the World Cup's opening game, expect a well-organised effort.

Painting a pretty picture

When winter comes about, Dhaka is abounding with wedding ceremonies. Parents of the bride and groom do everything possible for their son and daughter's ceremonies to look gorgeous, memorable and one where the guests leave happy and satisfied. Weddings usually reflect the families' taste, culture and limit of hospitality and it is an often enough sentiment that the best ceremony is the one that is organised from the heart and not always the pocket.

Don't win WC, please!

While the media of every country usually backs its team, a Sri Lankan newspaper columnist has urged the national squad not to win the World Cup -- for the greater good of the nation.

Kevin going after WC?

Top England batsman Kevin Pietersen has decided to quit one-day cricket after the World Cup starting in the subcontinent next week to prolong his Test and Twenty20 career, a report said on Saturday.

Safety first for PCA

Foolproof security arrangements would be in place for a smooth conduct of two league matches and a semifinal tie of the World Cup to be played at Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) stadium here next month.

Cricket South Africa boss ousted

Cricket South Africa president Mtutuzeli Nyoka was ousted by the federation's members in a vote of no-confidence Saturday morning, the organisation said on its website.

A moment of magic

Wayne Rooney's stunning finish gave Manchester United a 2-1 victory over Manchester City at Old Trafford on Saturday which left the leaders firmly in control of the title race.

Guardiola deal relieves Valdes

Barcelona goalkeeper Victor Valdes believes Pep Guardiola's decision this week to extend his contract until the end of next season has removed an unwelcome distraction for league leaders.

Bulgaria-Estonia tie under FIFA probe

World soccer's ruling body FIFA has ordered an investigation into the midweek friendly between Bulgaria and Estonia, an official said on Friday.

C'Ron feels phenomenal

Real Madrid star striker Cristiano Ronaldo predicted Friday he will perform even better during the final stretch of the season than at the start, saying he feels "phenomenal".

Another set-back for Pirlo

AC Milan's injury-plagued Italian midfielder Andrea Pirlo will be ruled out for another six weeks after suffering a knee strain in training on Friday.

Pearce wants Olympics role

England Under-21 manager Stuart Pearce admits he is interested in coaching a Great Britain side at next year's London Olympics.

WC bonus row over

The French Football Federation (FFF) announced on Friday that the debate over the France squad's forfeit of their World Cup bonuses was "definitively closed".

Kabze punished for spitting

Montpellier's Turkish striker Hasan Kabze has been handed a five-game ban after spitting at an opponent during a lower league match, the French football federation said Saturday.

Business

Samsung opens R&D centre

Samsung Electronics Company Ltd, the world's largest technology company by sales, yesterday launched its research and development centre in Dhaka, the first of its kind by any multinational company in Bangladesh.

Engine oil market widens

The market for lubricants is growing steadily, driven by an increase in demand for quality and branded products, leading players said.

Soybean oil prices leap yet again

Refiners and marketers hiked prices of packed soybean oil by at least Tk 12 a litre to match the increased prices of the vegetable oil on the world market.

District business leaders want more clout

The district-level chamber leaders yesterday called upon the government to give them more power and increase their participation in policymaking.

PM vows stern actions against hoarders

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said a group of businessmen is trying to increase the prices of food grains by creating artificial crisis in the market through hoarding.

Dong devalued

Vietnam on Friday announced its biggest currency devaluation in years. The State Bank of Vietnam said the average interbank exchange rate had been adjusted by 9.3 percent to 20,693 dong against the dollar, compared with 18,932 dong previously.

Free state banks from political influence

The government must restrict its ministers and lawmakers from lobbying for loans, legally bar trade unions from kowtowing to political parties, and ensure good governance to help the state-run commercial banks stay afloat, a top banker said yesterday.

India launches fresh incentives for exporters

India came out with a fresh package of fiscal incentives on Friday worth Rs 500 crore to exporters of select products to help them cope with the uneven global recovery marked by financial problems in Europe.

Agriculturists observe Krishibid Day today

Krishibid Institution, a platform of 25,000 agriculturists, will observe February 13 as Krishibid Day every year from now.

Textile and garment machinery show kicks off today

A four-day exposition starts in Dhaka today to showcase textile and garment machinery.

Temasek pays $1.7m telecom fine

Singapore state investment firm Temasek Holdings said Friday it had paid a 15 billion rupiah ($1.7 million) fine imposed for breaching anti-competition laws in Indonesia's telecoms sector.

Bangladesh should seize trade prospects

Bangladesh has a great opportunity to tap trade, investment and connectivity benefits from India and China by building closer ties, said Mustafizur Rahman, executive director of Centre for Policy Dialogue yesterday.

Supply chain managers awarded

The two-day international conference on supply chain management ended yesterday with conducting six seminars and rewarding three supply chain managers in Bangladesh.

Tap Canada potential

Masud Rahman said the two-way trade between the countries might reach $2 billion in a couple of years from $1.4 billion now, if Bangladesh diversifies its products

Indian 'flying car' that looks back to the future

It would be the ultimate answer to the daily horror of gridlock on the traffic-choked, exhaust-filled roads of Indian cities.

The rise of an entrepreneur

Nly a decade ago, Rafiqul Islam Robin never thought of making it to what he is today. The self-made businessman has surely done well after working as a salesperson in Dhaka and a stint abroad in quest of better times.

SME Foundation to widen its reach

The SME Foundation plans to set up offices in divisional cities across the country to serve small and medium enterprises easily, officials said.

Markets worry: What next? for Egypt after Mubarak

Global markets showed quick approval of Egyptian strongman Hosni Mubarak's resignation Friday, but analysts quickly began worrying about what comes next in the absence of a clear path for the future for the country.

US trade gap widens as China deficit hits record

The US trade deficit grew in December as imports rose at the fastest pace since June, while the politically sensitive gap with China hit a record for the year, official data showed Friday.

Spain economy shrinks 0.1pc in 2010

Spain's jobs-scarce economy shrank 0.1 percent in 2010 as the government slashed spending to avert an Irish-style debt crisis, provisional data showed Friday.

Nokia joins forces with Microsoft in mobile phone war

Nokia, the world's largest mobile phone maker, said Friday it was slashing jobs and joining forces with US giant Microsoft in a major strategy shake-up that left investors disappointed.

Tata Motors quarterly profit soars

India's top vehicle maker Tata Motors reported Friday a near four-fold rise in quarterly net profit, powered by higher demand for its British luxury brands Jaguar and Land Rover and better domestic sales.

Ford plans to slash debt by $3 billion

Ford announced plans Thursday to slash its debt by nearly three billion dollars by redeeming securities for cash and stock as it works to regain its investment-grade credit rating.

Asian shares mixed

Asian shares were mixed on Friday while oil surged amid rising tension in Egypt after President Hosni Mubarak enraged protesters by saying he would not step down.

Oil rises

Oil prices rose on Friday as heightened tensions in Egypt sparked crude supply concerns, analysts said.

Barclays to report earnings next week

Traders will next week feast their eyes on Britain's major banks as Barclays unveils annual earnings and details the size of bonuses for staff amid public anger over bankers' high pay.

Weekly Currency Roundup

Feb 6-10, 2011
International Markets:
The dollar rose broadly on Thursday, boosted by better-than-expected U.S. employment data, while the euro slumped as investors worried about Europe's lack of progress in tackling a sovereign debt crisis. Sterling fell against the dollar after the Bank of England left interest rates at a record low despite chatter about a possible hike, and traders said a recent spike in U.S. yields set the dollar up for further near-term gains. U.S. growth picked up in late 2010 and expectations of even brisker expansion this year have driven up bond yields to about nine-month highs, though the U.S. Federal Reserve has failed to signal plans to cut short a $600 billion bond-buying program. Adding to the optimism, U.S. claims for first-time jobless benefits fell in the latest week far below forecasts, data showed. The euro, which hit a 12-week high above $1.38 earlier this month, struggled as investors drove Portuguese bond yields to their highest level since the currency was introduced in 1999. Portugal is considered at risk of becoming the next euro zone country to need a bailout, and investors are anxious about a lack of progress by policymakers in addressing a euro zone debt crisis. European leaders are to meet next month to discuss bolstering a 440-billion euro bailout fund for troubled countries

Metropolitan

Indian SC counsel to move to stop border killings

Colin Gonsalves, a senior counsel of Indian Supreme Court (SC), yesterday said he would take a legal move to release Bangladeshi prisoners in his country and stop killing in Bangladesh-India border.

Govt orders to restore Zahir Raihan's house

The government has ordered actions to restore possession of an “abandoned house” at Mohammadpur in the city that was allocated to the family of martyred intellectual Zahir Raihan, as investigations revealed a case of forgery and intimidation by grabbers in ousting them from the property.

Knowledge Corner

Conquering space
The roots of space exploration lie deep in the history of the world. Ancient astronomers observed points of light that appeared to move among the stars. They called them planets. Even the first rockets owe their origin to the invention of gunpowder in China (10th Century AD). Wernher von Braun was one of the leading figures in the development of rocket technology. Von Braun was the leader of the “rocket team” which developed the V2 ballistic missile for the Nazis during World War II. In 1960 Von Braun by then in the US, received the mandate to build the giant Saturn 5 rockets. So he became the chief architect of the Saturn 5 launch vehicle, the super booster that would propel Americans to the Moon. Wernher von Braun is generally regarded as the father of the United States space program.

Govt to fix immigration charge

The government within next one or two months will set the immigration cost that the recruiting agencies can charge for sending students and workers abroad, said Dr Zafar Ahmed, secretary to expatriates' welfare and overseas employment ministry.

Moudud foresees Egypt-like uprising in Bangladesh

BNP Standing Committee Member Barrister Moudud Ahmed has observed that a situation of mass upsurge is prevailing all over the country and an Egypt-like popular uprising may also take place at any time in Bangladesh.

Admin officer of Mahasthangarh Mazar committee held

Administrative officer of the Mahasthangarh Mazar Unnayan Committee was arrested yesterday for his alleged involvement in the construction work on its premises defying the High Court order of December 7, last year.

Adopt greentech

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina wants the country to adopt environment-friendly “green” technologies, even if gradually, and asked engineers to spread the use of such technologies.

'Stop cutting tea garden trees'

The government should take effective measures to stop felling of trees in Aslompunji and Kaileenpunji of Nahar Tea Garden in Srimangol, Moulvibazar.

Gaziul Haque's birth anniversary today

Today is the 84th birth anniversary of language veteran and one of the War of Liberation organisers ANM Gaziul Haque.

Shahbagh flower shops 'evicted'

Dhaka City Corporation (DCC) evicted around hundred makeshift structures of flower vendors at Shahbagh in the city as part of the ongoing drive to free the footpath from illegal occupancy on the eve of the World Cup Cricket 2011.

Muggers shoot youth in city

Muggers shot and injured a youth at the city's Malibagh on early yesterday.

Three shops gutted in fire

A motor vehicle repairing workshop and two vehicle spare parts shops were gutted in a fire at Kalabagan bus stand at Hathazari in the port city yesterday.

Do objective journalism: DU VC

Vice Chancellor of Dhaka University Prof AAMS Arefin Siddique yesterday urged journalists to carry out their professional responsibilities in an objective manner, keeping aside their personal preferences, whether in politics or otherwise.

Four give depositions against 41

Forty-six suspected accused of a BDR mutiny case yesterday cross-examined five witnesses at a special court while four witnesses gave depositions against 41 accused jawans.

Trader shot, motorbike snatched

Muggers shot a cloth trader and snatched his motorcycle in Railway Hospital area of the city's Fulbaria last night.

HSC candidate kills self

A college student, who was supposed to sit for HSC examinations this year, allegedly committed suicide by hanging himself at his house in Adabor area of the city last night.

259 arrested ahead of WC cricket

Dhaka Metropolitan Police arrested 259 people including 24 beggars and 44 hawkers in separate drives on Friday and yesterday ahead of ICC Cricket World Cup.

National

Burdened by bumper potato

Bumper potato yield in eight northern districts this season hardly makes the farmers happy as 57 cold storages in the country's largest potato producing region can accommodate only 13.5 per cent of the total production.

Youth gets life for rape, two kids violated

A youth was jailed in Tangail on Thursday for rape while two kids were violated in Chuadanga on Tuesday.

AL leader jailed for contempt of court

A court here on Wednesday convicted a district Mohila Awami League (AL) leader and sentenced her to six months imprisonment in a contempt of court case filed by a college teacher last year.

Drug peddlers, addicts jailed

Mobile courts in Dinajpur and Natore on Friday jailed eight drug peddlers and five addicts.

Robbers loot filling station, garments factory

Robbers looted a filling station and a garments factory yesterday and the day before.

Infant dies allegedly after vaccination

An 18-day-old boy died allegedly after taking polio vaccine at Dighapatia Ghospara village under Sadar upazila yesterday.

40 hurt as AL rivals clash in Munshiganj

At least 40 people were injured as two rival groups of the ruling Awami League (AL) clashed at Mollakandi in Sadar upazila yesterday.

Day-labourer 'tortured to death'

A day-labourer was allegedly tortured to death at Akchai under Model police station here on Friday. The deceased was identified as Mohammad Ali of Belna area. Ali's wife Farida Begum said her husband went to Elem Munshi's house at Akchai to realise his arrears Thursday night. At one stage Elem locked into an altercation with Ali over the matter and Elem's people tortured him mercilessly leaving him unconscious. Farida said she rescued him from Elem's house Friday afternoon and rushed him to a local hospital where the attending doctor declared him dead.

Criminals loot cattle laden truck

A gang of armed criminals took away a cattle laden truck in Jangal area of Bandar upazila on Dhaka-Chittagong highway early Friday. Police said, the gang numbering 4/5 halted the Dhaka-bound Indian cattle laden truck from Noakhali in the area at about 4:00am. Taking the driver, helper and two cowboys hostage at gunpoint, the gang took control over the steering and at one stage dropped the hostages on the road. Later, the gang left the place along with the truck. Cattle trader Ohidur Rahman estimated the value of the looted 18 cows at Tk 6.75 lakh. Police recovered the truck in an abandoned condition from in front of Modhumoti filling station in Sonargaon upazila in the early morning.

Brickfield fined in Satkhira

A mobile court here fined a brickfield Tk 30,000 on charge of polluting environment by using firewood at Bardal in Assassuni upazila yesterday. Locals said, acting on a tip-off, the mobile court led by executive magistrate Md Sadequr Rahman and aided by a Rab-6 team raided Messrs UMB bricks owned by Bardal Union Parishad (UP) chairman Yunus Ali Sana at Bardal. The team also seized 400 maunds of firewood from the brick field. Later the courtfined the kiln Tk 30,000 for illegally using firewood instead of coal and polluting environment.

Fisherman's body recovered

Body of a fisherman who went missing on February 7 from the Sundarbans was recovered from river Kalindi near village Durmujkhali in Shyamnagar upazila yesterday. The deceased was identified as Arshad Ali Gazi, 28, son of Abdul Gafur Gazi of Ghona village in Shyamnagar upazila. Quoting locals police said Md Arshad Ali Gazi went to the Sundarbans to catch fish on February 7 morning. Since then he was missing and his relatives looked for him at different places but failed to trace his whereabouts. BGB sources said, Indian Border Security Force (BSF) men of Gobindapur camp in India found the body floating in the river Kalindi and informed the matter to Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) at Durmujkhali camp yesterday. Later police recovered the body and sent it to Satkhira morgue for postmortem. Police suspect Arshad was killed after abduction.

Five injured in clash

Five people were injured in a clash between students and transport workers over bus fair near Thomson Bridge in the town yesterday afternoon. Witnesses said a college student locked in an altercation with the helper of a `Jamuna Paribahan` bus over fair on his way to college from Chauddagram at around 1:30pm. The student got down from the bus at Thomson Bridge and called fellow students from the dormitory of the college. They attacked the counter of Jamuna Paribahan at Thomson Bridge, triggering a clash with transport workers, which left five people injured. The students also vandalised a Jamuna Paribahan bus.

Fugitive convict arrested

A fugitive convict, sentenced to life term imprisonment in a rape case, was arrested from Amhati Kalikapur area of the district town Friday afternoon. The arrestee was identified as Shahin of the area. On a secret information, police conducted a drive and arrested Shahin from his house. Police said Shahin was convicted and sentenced to life term by a Rajshahi court recently.

Letters

Prospects of Eco-tourism at Cox's Bazar

Though Cox's Bazar is as a tourist destination, there is a great potential of developing eco-tourism here. Moreover, to conserve and preserve the tourism resources of Cox's Bazar, eco-tourism must be promoted here as soon as possible. Here the landmark eco-tourism resources are Safari Park at Ukiah, the lush green forests at Inani upto Teknaf, Egg Island drifting amidst the Naf river, St. Martin's Island and Shah Parir Dwip, Kudumb Guha, Teknaf Safari Park, etc.

All it takes is intention and sincerity

Bangladesh is beset with tons of problems which needs to be addressed and taken care of properly. For doing this all that is needed is intention and sincerity. It is evidenced from the actions of all successive governments that it is neither interested nor sincere in solving the problems the nation is facing. For example, let us take a look at the name change game of the party in power. What purpose will it serve the people at large? The answer is nothing.

SEC ought to be stringent

Thanks to our Finance Minister for his timely intervention to quell the capital market which has been going through a rough-and-tumbled weather due to massive slides in the prices of almost all shares. The minister came up with proposals on how to bring reforms and revitalise the market and safeguard the interest and confidence of the investors. We earnestly hope that his concrete and meaningful suggestions will help to alleviate the hitherto dwindling market and bring stability and confidence, especially amongst the retail investors. His package of reforms is indeed laudable provided those are implemented immediately and monitored correctly on a regular basis. His scraping of book building systems for the time being is also a good step which has been until now manipulated by a few companies.

Anti-corruption hysteria

When Bangladesh was world champion as the most corrupt society for several years in succession, there was hardly any ripple and hue and cry. But now when the TIB has classified some of the corrupt areas in sample surveys, the professionals have gone into hysteria trying to defend themselves. There was even a court case against TIB, which has been dismissed.

Is Bangla there?

Recently, a national English language daily quoting a Bangla daily reported that the National Assembly of Pakistan is considering a bill concerning recognition to at least eight languages as the State language of Pakistan alongside Urdu. I appreciate the attached tag with the news which read “It seems that the Pakistani authorities have taken lessons from history!”

Dirty culture of false cases

Internationally famous person Dr. Yunus is facing false cases one after another. If a person like him is the victim of false cases, imagine the condition of the common people. I have seen criminals are using court to punish the innocent people and I think everybody of the society share my experience. If people working in our judiciary want to improve its image they should come up with agenda aiming to stop false cases. Responsibility of judiciary is to help the helpless people, but unfortunately, helpless people of our country are the victims of our judiciary. For example, thousands of farmers of our country lost their lands to the land-grabbers and developers and our government, politicians and intellectuals have been watching this crime for decades. Poor farmers cannot raise their voice because land grabbers and developers can easily put them in jail by filing false cases. Rape victims and acid victims hardly get justice in this country because criminals are usually rich (financially) and can hire famous and efficient lawyers.

Unanswered questions

The questions on the editorial page of DS on 27 Jan 2011 have prompted this letter.

Arabs are the stars!

The world has to pay attention to its troubles and the plight of the poor when the poor finally rebel. They can't say, "Let them eat cake!" when they're storming the Bastille! Those poor Arabs with their righteous cause in fighting for their lands that have been stolen from them! The Turks surrendered, the French surrendered, the British surrendered, the Germans have surrendered, and the Americans have pretty much surrendered …, but it looks like the Arabs are not going to surrender this time!--At least, not yet.

Readers Respond

Here are some comments that came in response to Saturday's The Daily Star report headlined “Biman's hiked fare re-fixed”.

Beware of short-cuts!

At present the youth of Bangladesh are busy in making money via short-cut ways without working hard. We know a lot of companies have sprung up in our country within a very short period of time. It is needless to quote those companies' names that have been alluring the literate, half-literate and illiterate persons. They seduce people to invest and in return offer more than double of the real amount. Our young generation is vulnerable to this situation as they are immature and don't have enough experience.

International

Pakistan issues arrest warrant for Musharraf

A Pakistani anti-terrorism court yesterday issued an arrest warrant for former president Pervez Musharraf over the assassination of ex-prime minister Benazir Bhutto, a public prosecutor said.

"Egypt will never be the same": Obama

US President Barack Obama has called on the Egyptian military to ensure a transition towards "genuine democracy" after the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak, saying the people of Egypt had spoken.

Suicide blast kills 30 in Iraq

A suicide bomber blew himself up inside a bus filled with Shiite pilgrims returning from mourning rituals in the Iraqi city of Samarra yesterday, killing at least 30 people, hospital sources said.

Thousands rally in Algeria and Yemen

Thousands of demonstrators hold rally in Algeria, Yemen yesterday, calling for their Presidents to step down and follow the example of Egyptian leader Hosni Mubarak, an AFP correspondent said.

Powerful quake rocks Chile

A powerful earthquake struck Friday off the coast of Chile, throwing a scare into residents nearly a year after a massive temblor and tsunami wreaked death and destruction in the same region.

No reason to lift sanctions

Myanmar's pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi said yesterday she saw no reason for Western countries to lift sanctions against the military-dominated government, but the issue had to be discussed.

Hundreds escape Cairo prison during riots

About 600 prisoners broke out of a Cairo prison yesterday after riots erupted, security officials said.

Indonesia plane crash kills five

All five people on a test flight were killed in Indonesia yesterday when their small plane crashed having changed one of its engines, a transportation ministry spokesman said.

Palestinian Authority to hold election, official says

President Mahmoud Abbas's Palestinian Authority will hold presidential and legislative elections before September, a senior Palestinian official said yesterday.

Kazakhstan opposition to boycott presidential polls

Kazakhstan's main opposition party Azat said yesterday it would boycott presidential polls to be held in April, which President Nursultan Nazarbayev is expected to win comfortably.

Colombian rebels release more hostages

Colombia's Marxist FARC rebels on Friday released two more hostages to the Red Cross, one of whom returned from captivity with a plea for national reconciliation.

Turkish military plot trial defendants arrested

Turkish police began arresting 162 retired and serving military officers, including former top commanders, who are on trial accused of plotting a coup in 2003 to topple Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's government.

Israel hails Egypt's assurance

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu yesterday welcomed assurances from Egypt's military that Cairo would respect its 1979 peace treaty with the Jewish state, in a statement from his office.

Arts & Entertainment

Musical Flashback Under the Stars

Scientifically speaking, a star is a massive, luminous ball of plasma shining due to thermonuclear fusion of hydrogen. In arts and literature, particularly in music, stars have a completely different significance altogether. Stars witness romance blossoming; under their twinkling gaze, lovers take vows to remain together forever. When those promises are broken, unrequited love becomes ballads -- often a broken heart's musical grievances to stars, for they had seen it all. Heartbreak aside, flickering stars could remind one of the glimmer in the beloved's eyes.

DS Café

Noted singer-musician

This Day In History

1668
Spain recognises Portugal as an independent nation.

OP-ED

Jittery grain market

Last week, three unrelated events worldwide drew our attention. First, was a tour by the President of China Mr. Hu Jintao to the Shandong province in east China. The second was an alert from the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) that severe drought was threatening the wheat crop in China this year. Lastly, our Food Minister Mr. Razzak making a trip to Delhi to sign an agreement with India to import rice from that country.

Unanswered questions in MPS

Bangladesh Bank (BB) issued Monetary Policy Statement (MPS) for the second half of the current fiscal year on January 30. This is the eleventh issue of MPS. I welcome the continuation of the practice primarily because such ex-ante announcements have the potential of providing a basis for expectations by various market actors. However, as in the past, the present MPS also leaves many questions unanswered. This article seeks to raise some of them with a view to drawing BB's attention in drafting future statements.

The way of all dictators

Dictators are a curious breed. When they seize power, they have little time or patience to remember the fate that might have befallen autocrats in earlier times and in other countries. Of course, some men, like Hosni Mubarak, do not come by power through seizing it but by being placed there through constitutional means.

Money can't buy me love

MR friend stanley is the richest guy in the world. No joke. Consider this. I rent a small apartment. Bill Gates owns a house. Stanley Ho Hung-sun has his own country. Think of that, Mr. Gates.



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