News of: Friday, 4th of March, 2011
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Professor Muhammad Yunus yesterday went to court challenging the central bank order that removed him from the post of managing director of Grameen Bank, while the wider international community showed its displeasure at the way the Nobel prize winner for Bangladesh was treated.
When thousands of Bangladeshis are crowding the Tunisian and Egyptian borders to escape the Libyan conflict, and international agencies are struggling for evacuation, the Bangladesh government is still “assessing its capacity” to bring the Bangladeshis home.
So after all the talk of “blood sucking” and “siphoning off billions” the real guilt of our one and only Nobel laureate and globally admired microcredit pioneer and Grameen Bank (GB) founder, is that he is too old to continue as the managing director and that his reappointment was not endorsed by the Bangladesh Bank. Did he become too old yesterday or in the recent past? Prof Muhammad Yunus is now more than 70 years old. So what was the Bangladesh Bank, the finance ministry and the several governments that came and went in the meantime, doing for all these years? Why was the so-called irregularity in his reappointment not corrected earlier? Why the process was not challenged either administratively or in the court of law? Why something that was not an issue for ten years, has suddenly become one?
Foreign diplomats in Bangladesh have sharply reacted to the government's move to remove Nobel laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus from Grameen Bank and none of them took it positively.
The tag of favourites cannot be attached to either side when Bangladesh take on West Indies at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur for today's 'crucial' day-night Group B encounter.
Workers returning from the trouble-hit Libya are deeply worried about their future. With the political turmoil in the North African country getting worse by the day, they have little hope to get back their jobs anytime soon.
The cabinet purchase committee yesterday approved a proposal to award the Ghorashal 200-300 megawatt power plant contract to a Chinese company.
Appearing for Prof Muhammad Yunus, eminent jurist Dr Kamal Hossain prayed for a ruling on the government to explain why the Bangladesh Bank's "letter of removal" should not be declared illegal. He also prayed for a stay order on the effectiveness of the central bank's letter.
Bangladesh's image has been dented due to the government's "removal" of Nobel laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus from Grameen Bank, Finance Minister AMA Muhith admitted yesterday.
A Dhaka court yesterday reprimanded the prosecution for failing to complete a fresh investigation into the BDR carnage within a month as stipulated by the court.
The head of India's top anti-corruption watchdog, who faces corruption charges, stepped down yesterday minutes after the country's apex court struck down his appointment.
Government jets pounded the rebel-held town of Brega yesterday sparking fears of a fresh onslaught by loyalist soldiers as a world court announced a crimes against humanity probe in Libya.
A High Court bench yesterday directed the registrar of the Supreme Court to file a criminal case against columnist Syed Abul Moksud on charge of 'making lives riskier' for two judges of the bench.
The writ of the government of Pakistan ceased to run effectively in East Pakistan from March 3. It was clear that Banga-bandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and his Awami League were clearly in charge of affairs in East Pakistan. The administration was Mujib's to run, de facto.
Police arrested seven car thieves and seized two private cars and two motor bikes from their possessions in separate drives at Gazipur Chowrasta and Mirpur in the capital yesterday.
Trial of the sensational Humayun Kabir Sabbir killing case against Bashundhara Group Chairman Ahmed Sobhan Shah Alam's son Shafiat Sobhan Sanvir and four others resumed yesterday in a Dhaka court with deposition of the complainant.
BNP Secretary General Khandaker Delwar Hossain was given life support at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of Square Hospital in the capital last night.
The Department of Environment (DoE) yesterday fined Tk 10 lakh to two brick kilns for polluting a mangrove forest in the coastal area of Sitakundo at Chittagong.
The move by the Bangladesh Bank to strip Professor Muhammad Yunus of his position at Grameen Bank is now a matter for the judiciary to decide. The Nobel laureate has already filed a petition challenging his removal. We will await, along with the rest of the nation, the judgement the High Court means to deliver on the petition on March 6.
Two months after the killing of Punjab governor Salman Taseer for his stance against the blasphemy law by his own bodyguard, assailants have shot dead another vocal critique of the law, the federal minority affairs minister of Pakistan, Shahbaz Bhatti. And accusing fingers are being pointed at the militants of Pakistani Taleban. In both the cases, the murder of two important secular voices of the country have drawn widespread condemnation as well as sympathy from well meaning quarters from home and abroad.
The Bangladesh brain trust has included Mahmudullah Riyad in the twelve-man team for today's World Cup group B match in a bid to tackle the barrage of left-handers from the West Indies.
The West Indies will not particularly worry about Bangladesh spinners when the Caribbean team take on co-host Bangladesh in the crucial ICC World Cup Group B match at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium today.
Players are in the field and the match gets underway with the first delivery bowled. Just then a large explosion happens in the eastern gallery of the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in the port city. The clouds of smoke and blaze make the spectators and players frightened. The terrorist attack has injured four cricket fans.
New Zealand will be desperate to boost their World Cup quarterfinal hopes with a convincing win over Zimbabwe in a crunch clash on Friday.
The cricketing world has been stunned by Kevin O'Brien's miracle innings against England in their World Cup match at Bangalore on Wednesday. All talk has revolved around Ireland's record-breaking win, and particularly, the man of the hour:
The last time Ramnaresh Sarwan came to Bangladesh was in 2002 when he was a young man burdened with a huge load on his shoulders. At that time, the impressive Guyanese hadn't scored an international ton for two years after his debut and promptly in his second game in Dhaka, Sarwan struck a sublime 102, touching the magic figure with a last-ball four off Tapash Baisya.
Now part of another West Indies side, Sarwan is one of only two players to have been part of that tour. This time too, the classy right-hander has to share the burden of the middle-order. He spoke to The Daily Star Sport's Mohammad Isam yesterday during training at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium.
Sri Lanka's legendary spinner Muttiah Muralidaran is desperate for a revenge World Cup victory over Australia on Saturday, four years after his country's final heartache.
Well not quite, since the match on Wednesday was totally to the contrary. England against India was like a golfer cruising along with a two shot lead on a Sunday, till the 17th, when the unspeakable happens; in the rough off the tee, then barely managing the safety of the fairway, following up with a shank into the bunker and not quite up and down from there. Three putting the 8 footer downhill, a classic case of being bit around the ankles when least expecting. Against Ireland, England were scandalous to the extent even Tiger Woods's indiscretions would have been forgiven.
Pakistan's bowling, led by captain Shahid Afridi, compensated for their weak batting display to inflict a 46-run defeat on lowly Canada in yesterday's World Cup match at the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo. The win kept Pakistan at the top of Group A with three wins from as many matches.
England's "shamed" cricketers came in for a slogging in the British press Thursday after they crashed to a humiliating defeat against minnows Ireland in their World Cup match in Bangalore.
AB de Villiers and Hashim Amla smashed centuries against the hapless Netherlands bowlers on Thursday to set up a thumping 231-run win for South Africa.
Five famous upset victories in the cricket World Cup after Ireland stunned England by three wickets in Bangalore on Wednesday:
Chittagong Abahani played out a 1-1 draw against Feni Soccer Club in the lone fixture of the Grameen-phone Bangladesh League at the Cox's Bazar Stadium yesterday.
Serena Williams, a former world number one and 13-time Grand Slam singles champion, is well and was recovering at home Wednesday after emergency surgery Monday to remove a blood clot from her lungs.
Argentine sensation Lionel Messi scored his 27th league goal of the season as champions Barcelona defeated Valencia 1-0 at the Mestalla stadium on Wednesday to move ten points clear of rivals Real Madrid at the Spanish first division summit.
Nicklas Bendtner scored a hattrick as Arsenal bounced back from their League Cup final disappointment to thrash Leyton Orient 5-0 and earn a place in the FA Cup quarterfinals here on Wednesday.
Another piece of silverware slipped from Bayern Munich's grasp on Wednesday as the holders were dumped out of the German Cup after a 1-0 semifinal home defeat to Schalke 04, coached by former Bayern boss Felix Magath.
Real Madrid striker Gonzalo Higuain returned to the pitch on Wednesday for the first time since he underwent back surgery in January to fix a slipped disc, the Spanish club said.
Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola entered hospital Thursday for severe back pain and it is unclear yet when he will be discharged, the club said.
Grameen Bank borrowers from different parts of the country yesterday termed the government attempt to remove Professor Muhammad Yunus 'motivated' and 'biased' and feared the bank will not sustain after his exit.
A simple village woman otherwise, Taslima Begum enjoyed the rare glory of receiving the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of Grameen Bank on December 10, 2006. She believes the government could have dealt with Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus respectfully.
Big-buying of shares from the state-owned enterprises aiming to even out the stockmarket paid off as the Dhaka stocks gained 136 points amid a mixed-up tempo on the closing day of the week yesterday.
Bangladesh exported 3,915 tonnes of hilsha fish and 30,431 tonnes of shrimp in first six months of current fiscal year, said Fisheries Minister Abdul Latif Biswas yesterday. “Last six months' trend shows, this year shrimp export would set a new record.”
Commerce ministry yesterday appointed Saidur Rahman Selim, a deputy secretary to the ministry, as the administrator of Bangladesh Freight Forwarders Association to run routine activities in absence of an elected executive committee.
The government has formed a body to build the country's third seaport in Pautakhali district.
Finance Minister AMA Muhith yesterday gave a briefing on the recent developments in Grameen Bank and its founder Prof Muhammad Yunus. The minister sat with ambassadors of different countries and representatives of multilateral agencies to make clear the government's stance on the issues. Dr Yunus faced a Bangladesh Bank order on Wednesday to give up his post as the managing director of Grameen Bank.
Let's face it it appears there is only upside for property prices in China.
Investors disillusioned by the implosion of Wall Street titans, economic anemia in Japan, and a debt debacle in Europe have found abundant opportunities to grow wealth in industrialisng economies like China and India.
Global food prices hit a record high in February, the United Nations said yesterday, warning that fresh oil price spikes and stockpiling by importers keen to head off popular unrest would hit already volatile cereal markets.
Japan is reviewing whether to cut its financial aid to China after the population giant overtook the island-nation as the world's number two economy last year, officials said Wednesday.
Investors rattled by spreading Mideast unrest drove regional stocks down sharply Wednesday, taking their cue from a plunge in regional heavyweight Saudi Arabia the previous day.
Struggling Malaysian car maker Proton said Thursday it had signed a deal with Japanese giant Nissan to share technology as it looks to boost its presence and competitiveness overseas.
Twitter has no plan to go public in the near future and does not need additional funds because it is making money, the co-founder of the popular microblogging site said.
French giant Carrefour, the world's second largest retailer, said Thursday its 2010 net profit rose 11.3 percent to 382 million euros ($530 million) despite taking a charge worth 1.13 billion euros.
The International Monetary Fund is worried about rising food prices, especially as they affect the poor and most vulnerable people, a spokeswoman said Thursday.
Asian stock markets mostly rose Thursday on upbeat US economic news and bargain hunting, but optimism was tempered by the crisis in the Middle East and North Africa, which kept oil near two-year highs.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said she and her sister Sheikh Rehana are constantly thinking on ways to build a poverty and hunger-free Bangladesh.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday urged the people to work unitedly to free the nation from the stigma of illiteracy and poverty.
Different socio-political organisations have expressed concern over the government's decision to remove Nobel laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus from the office of the managing director of Grameen Bank.
The Supreme Court yesterday upheld its chamber judge's order that stayed a High Court verdict declaring Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) Regional Council illegal and unconstitutional.
There should be a global voice for ensuring safety of migrants, with both the sending and destination countries taking responsibility, migration experts and law enforcing officials opined yesterday.
The European Union is keeping an eye on the proposed amendment to Anti-Corruption Commission Act, 2004 as it believes corruption adds huge cost to development of any country.
Opposition Chief Whip Jaynal Abedin Farroque said, “We (BNP activists) do not have any respect for those who are reluctant to pay tribute to Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus".
The State of the World's Children 2011 published by the Unicef yesterday revealed that three out of 10 adolescents get married before the age of 15 in the country, which is one of the reasons for high maternal mortality and morbidity.
At least seven people were killed and 14 others injured in separate road accidents in Chittagong, Pabna, Tangail, Noakhali and Netrakona districts yesterday.
Visiting British Princess Anne has lauded the development that has been taking place in the country's socio-economic sectors.
Speakers at a book launching ceremony yesterday demanded a stop to the use of war heroines and their heart-touching stories for commercial purpose.
The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has found a sub-inspector (SI) of Mirpur Police Station involved in taking Tk 5000 as bribe from the complainant of a case.
Speakers at a function on Thursday underscored the need for effective public relations to promote image of respective organisation, says a press release.
A teenage girl who was beaten up seriously by her husband for dowry Wednesday is now struggling for life at Chittagong Medical College Hospital (CMCH).
Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) activists vandalised and set afire a room of four journalists at Shahporan Hall of Shahjalal University of Science and Technology (Sust) yesterday.
Female civil service officials have been facing different forms of discrimination during their posting, promotion, and transfer nowadays, according to gender experts.
Police arrested two Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) activists on charge of beating two traffic constables in the city's Lama Bazar area yesterday.
A cyclone shelter-cum-training centre has been set up at Shyamnagar upazila in Satkhira district with grant assistance from Japan recently, says a press release.
The Supreme Court yesterday adjourned till March 9 the hearing on the appeal filed against the High Court verdict that declared fatwa illegal.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hansina will be visiting Khulna tomorrow.
A site supervisor was killed and a worker injured as pillars being used there fell on top of a labour shed at the construction site in the city's Gulshan yesterday.
Special needs students of Chittagong University (CU) yesterday demanded five percent quota in Bangladesh Civil Service (BCS), judicial services, and other first class public jobs.
Thousands of migratory birds are chirping and fluttering wings at Panipara, locally known as 'Pakheer Gram' (birds' village), attracting a large number of visitors and tourists.
An elderly man, who was awarded capital punishment in a murder case by a court in 2003, was executed in Sylhet Central Jail on Wednesday.
Mobile courts have jailed four more youths and boys for stalking.
Fishermen killed a notorious gang leader of pirates while another gang freed two fishermen on receipt of ransom on Wednesday.
The special court-15 will deliver judgement in the mutiny case against 42 jawans of Khagrachhari sector headquarters on March 24.
At least eight suspected members of Islamist outfit Hizb-ut Tawhid were arrested with Jihadi books, leaflets, posters and compact disks (CDs) in Joypurhat district yesterday.
Teachers of secondary and higher secondary educational institutions of the district yesterday gave a fresh ultimatum to Dinajpur Education Board authorities to meet their four-point demand by March 9. Otherwise, they threatened to launch a tougher agitation programme from March 10.
An under-trial prisoner and a convict died in Chapainawabganj and Thakurgaon districts yesterday and the day before.
The Greater Khulna Development Action Coordination Committee (GKDACC) has demanded early implementation of seven development projects in the southwestern region of the country.
At least 30 people including two policemen were injured as two rival groups of ruling Awami League (AL) clashed in Galachipa town on Wednesday.
Deposition in the case for explosives substances, filed after the capture of outlawed JMB chief Shaikh Abdur Rahman (hanged in another case later) and his accomplices and recovery of explosives from a house here in 2006, could not be recorded as the last prosecution witness did not turn up yesterday.
The Daily Star received around 150 comments, as of 7:00pm yesterday, in response to its Thursday's report headlined “Yunus 'removed'”. The tone of the comments was condemnation of the government move. We are publishing some comments in the state we received them.
Unfortunate! This is a vindictive decision. Dr. Yunus brings lot of prestige for Bangladeshis but now he is victimised. Bangladesh Bank proves its incapability and turned to become a rubber stamp organisation.
Nato has no intention of intervening in Libya but is planning for "all eventualities", alliance chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen said yesterday.
Pope Benedict XVI exonerates the Jewish people as a whole from responsibility for the crucifixion of Jesus Christ in a new book due to be published this month, prompting praise from Jewish groups.
Libya is on the verge of civil war, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said yesterday, in one of the starkest warnings yet by a world leader over the situation in the country.
European Union foreign ministers were summoned to an extraordinary meeting yesterday on Libya in Brussels on March 10, the latest in a packed series of talks next week on the turmoil.
A suicide bomber blew himself up inside a bank in the north-western Iraqi city of Haditha yesterday, killing nine people including three policemen, the town's mayor said.
A Pakistani court yesterday said that the murder trial of a CIA contractor would go ahead, despite the insistence of the US government that he has diplomatic immunity.
Nepal's former crown prince appeared in court yesterday charged with disturbing the peace after allegedly firing his gun during a drunken argument with fellow guests at an upmarket hotel.
Arts & Entertainment
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) in collaboration with Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) launched Baul Songs Publications (Books and CD) under the project of 'Action Plan for the Safeguarding of Baul Songs' on March 2 at Hotel Sonargaon in Dhaka.
A four day 'Patha Natya Utsab' (street theatre festival) arranged at local Shaheed Minar premises concluded on March 2 evening. Theatre veteran Golam Rafiq inaugurated the celebration.
It may be grey and cold in Berlin in the winter months, but the city transforms itself into a cinema-goers dream in February during the 10-day Berlin film festival, the “Berlinale”. The much-coveted Golden Bear for best film went to "Nader and Simin, a Separation", from the Iranian director Asghar Farhadi. That film also collected two of the other top prizes, the Silver Bear for best actor and the Silver Bear for best actress. The Silver Bear for best director went to German director Ulrich Köhler for his film "Sleeping Sickness", despite the film having received a few boos when it was presented. In the category of best short film, the Golden Bear was awarded to the innovative Korean film "Night Fishing", from the Park brothers. The best first feature award went to On the Ice, an Alaskan drama, which competed with 34 other films for this award.
An estimated 150,000 devotees from across the country gathered at the Baroshibaloy Temple in Joypurhat district on Wednesday to celebrate the major Hindu festival of MahaShibratri.
Tivoli Art Gallery has organised a group art exhibition, titled “7 Visions”, featuring the works of seven painters -- Elham Kaque Khuku, Dilruba Latif, Mohammad Jalaluddin, Mokhlesur Rahman, Laila Sharmmen, Samiran Chowdhury, Sayda Karim Mini and Uttam Kumar Karmakar.
This month DS Café will have noted media personality Pijush Bandyopadhyay take your calls at The Daily Star office. Readers will have the opportunity to converse with him on the Liberation war and more. Call 8126155 on Sunday, March 6, between 12 and 1 pm to speak to him!!!
We need to understand that, the way he is being removed is not acceptable under any circumstances. Hossain Zillur Rahman has said, this is not in public interest and it is devoid of any sign of good governance.
Once again, the sitting of Parliament had to be adjourned on February 24 due to a quorum crisis. Newspaper reports suggested that presence of lawmakers was thin at the beginning of the day's sitting at 4.45 pm, 15 minutes behind schedule. Around 9.00 pm, it came down to 48, falling short by 12 to run the sitting.
Obsession with history and sprightly interest in it are as different as cloudy and sunny outlooks. The first can work up emotions into a frenzy bordering on morbidity. On that route we are led to disorientation from matters at hand, a rather heavy price to pay. The second, on the other hand, can be an inspirational trigger of positive impulses for constructive engagements and creative outcomes.
The news of Dr. Yunus' ousting from Grameen Bank is deplorable. At a time when Bangladesh is hosting its biggest global event, the government has decided to publicly shun the nation's most prominent global citizen. Thank you dear politicians for taking us to another low.
Survived your latest business trip to un-urbanised parts of Asia? Congratulations. It may be luck, or you may have been lucky enough to have absorbed the information you need to know to keep alive.
Even a couple of years back Harry Cheung, managing director of Kaspersky Lab Asia-Pacific, one of the world's top four leading IT security software companies, didn't really care about Bangladesh market. But for the past two years when he saw the figures grow it amazed him and right now to them it is one of the main countries in South Asia other than India.
The internet has always been an alien territory to many Bangladeshis.
ASUS, a leading computer manufacturer, has launched its latest laptop NX90JQ laptop in the local market, says a press release.
The submission date for National Digital Innovation Award 2011 nomination, which has been extended to March 5, ends tomorrow. D.Net (Development Research Network) and Ministry of Science and ICT are jointly organising the prestigious contest in the field of ICT for Development in Bangladesh.
Nokia has introduced new cricket applications on its Ovi Store. The free apps let its users to keep track of scores during matches and also allow storing the match records.
Apple is back with a refined second-generation tablet computer that squeezes more power into a thinner shell while keeping prices in check. It's a three-pronged push that should handily hold off competitors for another year.