News of: Monday, 16th of May, 2011
The parliamentary special committee on constitutional amendment is looking for ways to ratify afresh the interim government led by Justice Shahabuddin Ahmed that was formed after the end of an autocratic rule in 1990.
The government has appointed Prof M Khairul Hossain as chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission on recommendations of the committee that probed the recent stockmarket debacle.
The Supreme Court yesterday declared the military rule of HM Ershad illegal in a verdict that also said the actions taken by his regime will remain effective until their fate is decided by parliament.
After a lapse of nearly three years, main opposition BNP yesterday announced its Dhaka city committee headed by Mayor Sadeque Hossain Khoka amid criticism in the rank and file of the party.
Brac University students have made the nation's first lunar robot which will compete with robots made by famous universities across the world for Nasa's Annual Lunabotics Mining Competition, 2011.
The government is going to extend the tax holiday for two years considering the demand of industrialists.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina arrived in Geneva yesterday on a four-day visit to Switzerland to attend two UN conferences.
Fair case management and close monitoring have enabled the Supreme Court to reduce a backlog of over 92,000 cases pending with the High Court Division in the last seven and a half months.
A band of politically influential people have grabbed 0.30 acres of public land belonging to the local health complex to build markets without any authorisation whatsoever.
Jamaat-e-Islami Secretary General Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mojaheed was shown arrested yesterday in one of the two cases filed for the grenade attack on an Awami League rally on August 21, 2004.
Expressing deep concern over the delay in investigation, a Chittagong court yesterday granted 45 more days for further investigation into the sensational Chittagong arms haul case.
Eighteen ministries of the government will make coordinated efforts to drastically reduce road accident casualties within a decade.
Arrested Mahmudul Islam and his brother Nazrul Islam yesterday confessed to the killing Himel Das Supam, an SSC GPA-5 achiever.
Negligence of a government official was the reason for the sensational Rid Pharma case not being heard at a Dhaka Court yesterday.
BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia met with her elder son Tarique Rahman in London on Saturday night after over two and a half years.
The United States has nominated Dan W Mozena as next ambassador to Bangladesh, according to a White House announcement.
The government starts today selling flour at subsidised price through open market sale (OMS) along with rice.
Two High Court judges have been appointed to the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court.
A Bangladeshi cattle trader was hacked to death by Indian Border Security Force (BSF) near Boikari border in Satkhira Sadar upazila yesterday.
A 6.0-magnitude earthquake rumbled yesterday in the Atlantic Ocean off Brazil, US-based seismologists said.
The Department of Environment (DoE) fined four factories over Tk 43 lakh yesterday for dumping untreated wastes into the Bangshai river in Savar.
A 5.9-magnitude earthquake struck Afghanistan's mountainous Hindu Kush region near the Pakistani border early yesterday, US seismologists said, but there were no immediate reports of casualties or damage.
A British marine was killed yesterday in a blast in southern Afghanistan, the Ministry of Defence in London announced.
Italians voted yesterday in partial local elections with all eyes on the northern business hub of Milan, a centre-right stronghold of embattled Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.
We take note of the verbal exchange between the Law Minister and the Chief Justice, not merely as a riposte of the latter to the former's criticism of the performance of the judges but for the merit that both sides have in what they have articulated. The exchange occurred during the foundation laying ceremony by the prime minister of the Judges' Complex last Saturday
Bangladesh needs to invest more on research to introduce improved varieties of seed for meeting the rising demand for foods, that too in the face of the negative impact of climate change. This was underscored by experts in a roundtable at the Daily Star on Saturday. They also suggested diversifying crops and focusing more on livestock and fishery sectors anticipating that people would consume less rice and spend more on other food items in the years ahead.
A brace from Emmanuel Ayuk helped Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club edge Arambagah KS 2-0 in the Grameenphone Bangladesh League fixture at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.
The 12th National Cricket League has concluded on May 14, bringing an end to the country's first-class season. Eight months ago, The Daily Star Sport ran previews of all six divisional sides taking part in the competition and now it will evaluate all six campaigns, starting with Chittagong. Tomorrow, the second part of this series will be published.
Wari club claimed Lyric Group Independence Day Hockey Competition title defeating Bangladesh Army 4-2 in the tie-breakers in an entertaining final at the Maulana Bhasani National Hockey Stadium yesterday after regulation and extra time had ended.
Paul Valthaty cracked a brisk 62 and Piyush Chawla bagged three wickets to help Kings XI Punjab score a 29-run win over Delhi Daredevils in an Indian Premier League match on Sunday.
Bangladesh's ace golfer Siddikur Rahman put the full stop on a disappointing showing after shooting a round of four-over-par 76 in the fourth round to finish in joint 37th place at the conclusion of the ICTSI Philippine Open at the Wack Wack Golf and Country Club in Manila yesterday.
Different organisations and personalities have come forward to extend their helping hands in support of ailing sports reporter Al Musabbir Sadi, who is currently fighting against cancer.
Brad Hodge put in an impressive all-round performance to help Kochi Tuskers Kerala post an easy eight-wicket win over Rajasthan Royals in an Indian Premier League match on Sunday.
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) are in preliminary talks with potential head coaches of the Tigers.
Quite suitably, it took an up and down day to end an up and down Test, a cracker between two faltering sides. At the end West Indies had wrapped up their first and most significant Test win in over two years, since they beat England at the start of 2009. Ravi Rampaul and captain Darren Sammy were at the centre of it, taking eight wickets between them to lead the side to a 40-run win in Providence. Misbah-ul-Haq and Umar Akmal battled but Pakistan had been outplayed, their batting as brittle as ash.
BKSP pace bowler Tripti ran through the Kalabagan Krira Chakra middle-order to help her side to a nine-wicket win in the Women's Club Cup cricket tournament at the Dhanmondi Cricket Stadium yesterday.
Misbahul Haq and Asad Shafiq rescued Pakistan from a perilous 2-3 to be 80-3 at stumps on the third day of the first Test against the West Indies Saturday as the tourists chased down a 219-run winning target.
Former Pakistan Test spinner Akram Raza, fined in a match-fixing inquiry eleven years ago, was arrested over betting on lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) matches, police said Sunday.
Novak Djokovic maintained his unbeaten start to 2011 with an epic three-hour 6-1, 3-6, 7-6 victory over fourth seed Andy Murray in the Rome Masters semifinals on Saturday.
The first round of National Women's Football Championship starts today at the Jessore stadium when across hosts Jessore entertain Rajbari. The first round of the meet is being participated by 28 teams divided in seven regions.
Pakistan's one-day cricket captain Shahid Afridi has said he is available for the two ODIs against Ireland later this month.
Rajasthan Royals captain Shane Warne has apologised for publicly insulting state cricket association secretary Sanjay Dixit after an Indian Premier League match here following an internal disciplinary inquiry by the franchise.
Manchester City defender Micah Richards insists his side's 1-0 FA Cup final victory over Stoke on Saturday will herald the start of a glorious era at Eastlands.
Coach Felix Magath admitted feeling an empty sense of relief after avoiding German league relegation for the fourth time in his career thanks to VfL Wolfsburg's 3-1 win at Hoffenheim.
Chelsea's pain at losing their Premier League title to Manchester United was compounded by Steven Taylor's added-time header that secured a 2-2 draw for Newcastle United at Stamford Bridge here on Sunday.
Manchester United's record 19th title confirms Sir Alex Ferguson as the greatest manager in English football history, the 36th trophy of a remarkable 25-year reign at Old Trafford that may never be equalled.
Bayern Munich president Uli Hoeness claimed Saturday the Bavarian giants had agreed in principle a transfer fee with Schalke 04 for Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer.
Lazio gave their hopes of playing in next season's Champions League a boost by thumping Genoa 4-2 in Rome on Saturday.
Sepp Blatter says he is confident of being re-elected as president of FIFA when world football's ruling body votes in June.
Businessmen yesterday sought a reduction in the bank lending rates and a further cut in the duty for importing capital machinery and raw materials, for faster industrialisation and economic progress.
Stocks gained for a second day as the government appointed a new chairman to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as part of a government plan to recast the commission.
Dhaka is among the three South Asian cities that are at the bottom of a ranking of networked society city matrix among 25 mega cities of the world.
Textiles and Jute Minister Abdul Latif Siddiqui yesterday asked textile and garment entrepreneurs to cut dependency on foreign consultants and produce skilled manpower at home to run technical and business activities.
The government should prepare a district-wise budget to decentralise funds and increase peoples' participation in the budget making, speakers said at a discussion yesterday.
The country's apex trade body yesterday called for opening up the gas sector for private investment and making public-private partnership initiatives operational to lure investment for developing infrastructure.
BOC Bangladesh (BOCB) has recently elected Ayub Quadri as chairman and Erphan Shehabul Matin as managing director.
Talukdar Noman Anwar has joined HSBC Bangladesh as head of marketing and communications with effect from today, the bank said in a statement yesterday.
The government can generate greater revenue and net more taxpayers if it simplifies the taxation system and provides incentives to new entrepreneurs, the managing director of the SME Foundation said yesterday.
His first investment was as low as Tk 500. SM Zahid Hossain Akash used it to make two 'fatuas'. The thirty-year-old from Jessore sent the pair to a leading fashion house in Dhaka. It was enough to win a bulk order and thus he cemented a career path he had dreamt off.
Bangladesh Bank and the SME Foundation are going to jointly organise the 'SME Entrepreneur and Banker Conference' in Sylhet on Wednesday, to bring entrepreneurs and financiers under one umbrella.
The guidelines and especially the fees proposed by the Bangladesh Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (BTRC) to renew the 2G licences of four operators (GP, Robi, Banglalink and Citycell) have come under severe scrutiny and criticism from all quarters, some even remotely related, immediately after their publications.
From chic styles to cuisine, from cinema to comics, Taiwan is trying to project its soft power across the globe in an effort to step out of China's shadow.
In the flurry of statements on the killing of Osama bin Laden, a remark from Pakistan's ambassador to Washington, Husain Haqqani, spoke volumes about how US foreign aid tends to be perceived by its recipients. It's not enough.
Just a fifth of Iraqis have bank accounts, but 70 percent have mobile phones, so Baghdad is hoping to close the gap by getting people to open accounts, make payments and transfer cash -- all via mobile.
Sony said it had begun restoration of its PlayStation Network games service on Sunday, almost a month after a massive security breach of the network forced the company to shut it down.
The debt-laden US government's credit card will hit its limit Monday, creating a cash crunch that puts the country's credit standing at risk as politicians battle over its long-term deficit.
Spanish banks are offering high interest rates plus free iPads, TVs and Blu-ray recorders in a knock-down battle for customers, prompting deep concern in the government.
Europe's main stock markets and the euro currency fell, with better than expected European growth data overwhelmed by persistent concern over eurozone debt woes at the end of a choppy trading week.
Spanish telecoms giant Telefonica reported on Friday a 1.9-percent slip in net quarterly profit to 1.624 billion euros ($2.3 billion), but gave no explanation.
The Right to Information Act (RTI) will be included in school textbooks of class eight and above, said Chief Information Commissioner Mohammad Zamir at a view exchange meeting yesterday.
As part of its effort to ensure quality education, the education ministry will broadcast class lectures of some reputed schools of Dhaka city for rural students through Bangladesh Television (BTV) from May 22.
Speakers at a discussion in the port city yesterday called for establishing good understanding and reducing the communication gap between different local government institutions for proper development of the port city.
At least three people were crushed under the wheels of trains in Kushtia and Rangpur on Saturday.
Elected women representatives suggested specifying and expanding their role in local government institutions for their political empowerment.
Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) President Khandker Mahbub Hossain yesterday said people would not accept outgoing Chief Justice ABM Khairul Haque as head of the next caretaker government.
Ruling Awami League (AL) yesterday hailed the Supreme Court Verdict that upheld the High Court Verdict declaring the seventh amendment to the constitution illegal.
Nine people were awarded Saturday at the prize-giving ceremony of the first-ever national essay competition of Dhaka University Economic Department Alumni Association (DUEDAA).
Four people were killed and four others injured in separate road accidents in Brahmanbaria and Magura yesterday.
A man was killed and another seriously injured in an attack allegedly by rivals in Hainako Bazar area under Bhujpur Police Station in Chittagong on Saturday evening.
Outgoing Chief Justice ABM Khairul Haque called on President Zillur Rahman at Bangabhaban yesterday.
Unidentified people rewrote names of compartment-based groups of Chittagong University (CU) shuttle train inside the train five days after the university authority erased them.
A member of Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB), an accused in Pilkhana BDR Mutiny case, died at Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH) early yesterday.
Speakers here yesterday urged the government to increase tax on tobacco and tobacco products in the upcoming national budget to safeguard a large number of people from the ill-effects of tobacco.
A 14-member team of UK Royal College of Defence Studies (RCDS) arrived here yesterday for a week-long visit.
The ruling Awami League will observe Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's 'Homecoming Day' tomorrow in a befitting manner.
Monika Debnath, wife of Awami Swechchhashebak League General Secretary Pankaj Debnath, was sent to jail yesterday in a graft case in which she was earlier sentenced to three years' imprisonment in absentia.
Four minor children drowned in a pond in Tongi yesterday afternoon.
At least 10 people were injured in a factional clash of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) men of Comilla's Titas upazila unit yesterday.
The government will make Bangladesh National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) independent, accountable and an international standard institution to ensure promotion and protection of human rights and freedom of the people.
Police arrested an activist of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) of Chittagong University (CU) unit on Saturday from university area.
Some NGOs activists yesterday demanded compensation for the family members of the victims of MV Bipasha launch accident, which occurred in Meghna River in Brahmanbaria on April 21 that took 33 lives.
A housemaid allegedly committed suicide by jumping from the roof of a six-storey building at Uttara in the city yesterday.
The British High Commission in Dhaka, its office in Sylhet, and DFID Bangladesh will be closed to the public tomorrow (Tuesday) on the occasion of Buddha Purnima, says a press release.
A class eight student of the city's Dholaipar High School committed suicide yesterday evening as his mother rebuked him due to poor performance in exams.
Broadcast of regular programmes of private television channel, Boishakhi Tv, was suspended for over an hour last night as a fire broke out from a leak in a gas pipeline adjacent to its building at Mohakhali in the city.
A youth hurled acid on a divorced woman as she refused his marriage proposal at Geneva Camp of Mohammadpur in the city yesterday.
A 10-year-old boy allegedly killed his playmate by pushing off from the roof of a market at Telghat of Dakhhin Keraniganj in the outskirt of the city yesterday afternoon.
At least twelve people, including Hatiya municipality mayor, were injured in a clash at Oskhali Bazar in Hatiya upazila last night.
Feroz Khan, a former senior vice president of Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE), passed away at a private hospital in the city yesterday due to cardiac arrest at the age of 70, says a press release.
Md Mostafizur Rahman Siddique Azad, a freedom fighter, passed away at Bangladesh Medical College Hospital in the city yesterday at the age of 59, says a press release.
Abdul Mannan Master, father of Abdullahil Shaheen, chief feature writer of Press Information Department, passed away at Kazirchar village of Muladi upazila in Barisal on Saturday at the age of 70, says a press release.
Today is the 24th death anniversary of M Asghar Ali, a former chief superintendent of High Court, says a press release.
Police in Faridpur and Netrakona recovered decomposed bodies of two allegedly abducted schoolboys yesterday and the day before.
A university student was hacked to death at Ramonpur village in Sadar upazila on Saturday night.
The accused in Limon Mishra murder case are moving freely under the nose of the law enforcers and putting pressure on the victim's family to withdraw the case.
Maolana Bhasani University of Science and Technology (MBUST) authorities yesterday filed a case against 11 agitating students of Food Technology and Nutritional Science (FTNS) department.
Storms lashed three districts yesterday and the day before killing at least two people and injuring scores of others.
A woman sustained serious burn injuries as criminals threw acid on her at Alinagar in the town yesterday morning.
A man was stabbed as he tried to resist an alleged stalker from assaulting his daughter on her way to school at Wari village under Belabo upazila on Saturday.
Sixteen people were sued yesterday on charge of killing JCD leader Shafikul Islam Shafique.
Criminals killed an activist of Awami Jubo League, youth front of the ruling Awami League (AL) in the city's Islampur area on Saturday night.
A group of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) activists vandalised 'complaint centre' of a power office on Saturday night.
About a thousand students of Amlagachhi D U Girls' High School in Palashbari upazila yesterday boycotted classes and blocked Amlagachhi-Palashbari road demanding punishment to a youth for stalking a student of class seven.
Police arrested 10 people, including three women from non-man's land, while they were returning home from India early yesterday.
May Almighty Allah help the children of this nation and forgive some ignorant 'teachers' for the irreparable damage they are doing to the individual student and society on the whole. As a doctor I see the physical damage regularly.
Elephants of Bangladesh are starving. The forests of Bangladesh have become smaller in size and are no longer typical rain forests with various types of big and small trees and plants which provide abodes and food to varieties of birds and animals. These have been replaced by jungles of several varieties of foreign trees which can be used as firewood for brickfields, domestic purposes, curing tobacco and making inferior quality furniture. The photograph of elephants eating water hyacinth published in your esteemed daily recently is heartrending. Emaciated and starving elephants are being compelled to change their ancient food habits. They are now making forays into villages situated in the outskirts of their natural habitat, at times killing or injuring villagers and destroying their thatched homes. On the other hand, thousands of acres of fertile paddy fields in the valleys in hills remain untilled because of fear of elephants. The net result of this situation is sufferings, of both elephants and humans. Sincere desire of the govt. and a meticulous planning and vigorous, coordinated action by the ministry of forest, ministry of agriculture and law enforcing authorities could correct this intolerable situation.
In the present competitive global market trend, regional and sub-regional co-operation is essential for sustainable growth. In Asia, there exist at least 4-5 regional and sub-regional co-operations for the promotion of tourism, among which Bangladesh is a member country. Some of those are Asia Cooperation Dialogue (ACD), Bay of Bengal of Initiative for Multi-sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC), South Asia Sub-regional Economic Cooperation (SASEC), South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), Asia Productivity Organization (APO). The objectives of all these co-operations are to pursue common goals that are regional development, employment generation and poverty reduction through co-operation of various issues. Tourism is one of those issues. But the progress is very tardy of these cooperation due to various reasons and fund constraints. Different meetings and seminars on tourism of these forums determined to promote South Asia as a single tourist destination. For having an effective result, there needs a strong co-operation and political will of the member countries.
Thanks to the government's initiative to fix the fares of CNGs, the drivers are now asking for Tk. 20/- more than what is registered on the meter. The reason? Now the meter is showing too small a fare. Previously, the fare used to be Tk. 100/- for a trip from Banani to Baily Road. Thanks to the new rate, the meter shows Tk. 70/-. It makes sense to ask for the extra twenty, right? It seems that whatever the government does to reduce the sufferings of the public, the CNG drivers will find their logic to impose their rules of fare. I fail to understand why the govt. fails to adjust their plans. The public has to be at the mercy of the drivers to go with the legal rate.
Boat race is one of the traditional sports of entertainment of riverine Bangladesh. The race is held mainly in rural areas and organised by the rural people of Gopalganj, Madaripur, Norail, Munshiganj, Narayanganj, Pabna, Sirajganj, Sylhet, Brahmanbaria, Narsingdi, etc.
Our telecommunications minister announced on May 10 at a function in the capital that the 3G (third-generation) mobile network would be launched in Bangladesh by this year. We hailed it. Actually, this service has long been active in a number of countries of the world. So, we also would like the authorities concerned to take immediate step in this connection.
France has banned using veils which some Muslim women regard as a religious duty. France is also reported to have arrested two Muslim women violating the ban. French women are displaying their bodies in public. On the other hand, French nuns are wearing a special dress covering from leg to head.
It seems the government has given a dark force license to abduct, maim and murder those opposed to it. In the absence of any accountability, RAB is serving the wishes of the government by monopolizing its position as a demigod among the Bangladeshis.
Last year the High Court declared corporal punishment in schools unlawful. Sir Frank Peters wrote: “Any teacher or headmaster who engages in corporal punishment is an enemy of a student, family and state, now that corporal punishment has been outlawed.” It could not be said more simply than that.
A former law minister recently called this government a “autocratic”. Ironically, he was the Vice President under a military dictator. Dictators are hated species around the globe, for they lack legitimacy as they are not public representatives.
Raj Rajaratnam, the billionaire co-founder of Galleon Group Hedge Fund has been found guilty of insider-trading, fraud and conspiracy. He illegally traded on 35+ stocks including names like Intel, IBM, Hilton and Google. Charged in 2009, Rajaratnam had remained free on a US$100 million bond as he mounted a robust US$20 million defense.
Morshed Ali Khan's front page report, and the pictures alongside published on May 7th, reflects the cruel and sadist trend of RAB, that we thought had gone with the 'Nazi Gestapo' after the last 'World War'! Surprisingly, it is alive and nurtured in Bangladesh by RAB; who seem to be proud of their animal like cruelty!
Recently the White House has released the long form of President Barack Obama's birth certificate in response to festering questions about whether he was born in the United States. Production of birth certificate by an American President to prove his American citizenship and to confirm his President candidature is really unfortunate. I cannot believe to have such a treatment in a highly civilized country like the United States! Had Obama not been born in the United States, how he received the majority votes? Was he a stranger to his supporters? Meanwhile I warmly appreciate President Obama's initiative to end the on-going debate over his birthplace and I sincerely wish his success in the office of the President.
Abbotabad will open, not a can of worms, but a barrel of venomous serpents. A deluge of awkward questions will follow. The picture, shorn of all verbiage shows an unarmed middle-aged man shot to death with admittedly only his wife resisting, while other wives and a dozen children were mute spectators. It is irrelevant that his head had a price-tag of $ 25 million, allegedly for a crime that he was never formally charged with, tried or convicted in a court of law. But is it irrelevant, the killers were one nationality, came from another country and completed their 'contract/supari' in a third? What happened to the “sanctity of national boundaries”? Where is the “sovereignty of independent states” that the 'civilized' countries love to teach? Extra-judicial killings are nothing new. The young puppy has been doing it with impunity for years. Now the tail is wagging the dog!
Here are some comments that came in response to Sunday's The Daily Star report headlined 'Rab office on Buriganga?'
Pakistan's spy agency has stopped sharing intelligence with the CIA following the unilateral US operation to kill Osama bin Laden as a report revealed.
Israeli gunfire killed 12 people and wounded hundreds yesterday as Palestinians marched on Israel's borders with Lebanon, Syria and Gaza in a mass show of mourning over the creation of the Jewish state.
Thailand is interested in an asylum seeker deal similar to the one Canberra plans with Malaysia as Prime Minister Julia Gillard reiterated yesterday that new boat people will not be processed in Australia.
Japan yesterday started the first evacuations of homes outside a government exclusion zone after the March 11 earthquake and tsunami crippled one of the country's nuclear power plants.
Tensions between the US and Pakistan over the killing of Osama bin Laden and a speedier US withdrawal from Afghanistan are likely to reinforce China and Pakistan's already strong ties, analysts say.
The head of the International Monetary Fund, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, has been charged yesterday by New York police over an alleged sex attack on a hotel maid.
The UN special envoy was yesterday headed for Libya to urge a ceasefire between Muammar Gaddafi's troops and rebels seeking to topple the strongman, as an anti-regime revolt entered a fourth month.
The billionaire founder of Blackwater Worldwide, a scandal-plagued US security firm accused of abuses in Iraq, was hired by the crown prince of Abu Dhabi to put together an 800-member battalion of foreign troops, The New York Times reported yesterday.
US Senator John Kerry said yesterday relations with key ally Pakistan were at a "critical moment" as he headed from Kabul to Islamabad as the first senior US visitor since the death of Osama bin Laden.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been put "under a spell" by his chief of staff Esfandiar Rahim Mashaie, an ultra-conservative cleric was quoted by local media yesterday as saying.
An Indian soldier was killed when Pakistani snipers allegedly shot across the sensitive border in divided Kashmir, an Indian paramilitary official said yesterday, leading to a gunfight.
It was the first, live televised press conference in US history, and President John F Kennedy beamed his 200-watt smile as he looked across the assembled media gathered in the cavernous, newly opened State Department auditorium.
Clashes between Muslims and Christians in the centre of Cairo have left 51 people wounded, the health ministry said yesterday, as Coptic Christians pursued a sit-in protest against the violence.
Militia and mercenaries loyal to Ivory Coast strongman Laurent Gbagbo killed 220 people while fleeing through the southwest of the country, a spokesman for President Alassane Ouattara said on Saturday.
A Saudi mother said yesterday she defied a ban on women drivers in the ultra-conservative kingdom by getting behind the wheel for four days without being stopped.
North Korea and Iran are suspected of sharing ballistic missile technology, according to a UN sanctions report which China has sought to block, diplomats said yesterday.
US army engineers have opened yesterday floodgates in Louisiana that will inundate up to 3,000 sq miles of land in an attempt to protect large cities along the Mississippi River.
Belarus on Saturday jailed opposition leader Andrei Sannikov for five years on charges of organising protests after the disputed re-election of authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko.
Somali pirates received a ransom of seven million dollars for the release of two Spanish hostages held for four and a half months, a pirate said yesterday.
The US Navy ship from where Osama bin Laden was buried at sea arrived in the Philippines for a port call yesterday, but the crew avoided any mention of the historic incident.
Pakistani hoteliers in the now notorious town where Osama bin Laden was killed by elite US forces are praying the views and balmy weather still reel in bumper tourist numbers this year.
Suzanne Mubarak, wife of toppled Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, was expected to undergo open-heart surgery yesterday night, the manager of the Sharm el-Sheikh Hospital said.
The Taliban once banned all television, music and cinema in Afghanistan, but now they are fighting their war via Twitter, the online messaging network that revolutionised global communication.
Egyptian Foreign Minister Nabil al-Arabi was unanimously elected Arab League chief yesterday, an AFP correspondent at the Arab League headquarters in Cairo said.
Arts & Entertainment
Book launch programmes are becoming more frequents than ever in Dhaka these days -- a positive trend. The launch of an anthology of English translations of Rabindranath Tagore's writings, titled “The Essential Tagore”, at Bengal Gallery of Fine Arts in Dhaka on May 14 saw leading thinkers, academics, translators, and artistes of Bangladesh. Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dr. Dipu Moni, reached the venue well before the event started and stayed until Dr. Fakrul Alam (one of the translators and editors of the book) concluded the programme that ran well over two hours.
The Department of Theatre, Dhaka University (DU) brought a new play to the stage. The play, “Trishnay”, was written by one of the pioneering playwrights of the country, Professor Sayeed Ahmed. Ahmedul Kabir, lecturer of the Department, has directed the play.
Noted Bengali playwright Badal Sircar, one of the pioneers of street plays and absurd theatre in India, died of cardiac arrest at his house in Kolkata on Friday after protracted illness. He was 86.
A weeklong book fair began on the Shahjalal University of Science and Technology (SUST) campus on Thursday.
A three-day theatre festival began at Town Hall Saheed Minar premises yesterday.
Noted Australian film critic and buff John W. Hood will be conducting a workshop on film aesthetics at Bangladesh Film Institute at Kalabagan in Dhaka.
The Communist Party of India (Marxist) [C PI (M)]-led Left Front's debacle in the State Assembly polls in West Bengal has left many wondering not only about the future of the CPI(M), but also of Left politics in general in West Bengal as well as in other states like Kerala in India. The routing of the party's 34-year sway in West Bengal at the hands of the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamul Congress (TMC) seems to have shaken it at the base. The major partner of the Left Front, CPI (M) won only in 40 seats, down from 176 last time. It even lost this time by two seats to Congress, which won 42 seats and played a crucial role in TMC's victory.
One of the more bewildering aspects of electoral democracy is the mesmerising power of false comfort. It stretches from silly posturing to incomprehensible self-delusion, but nothing illustrates its meaninglessness better than the answer to an obvious question: what does a politician hope to achieve by denying a truth that is glaringly evident to everyone else, and will be officially confirmed within 48 or 72 hours? Nothing.