The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Friday, July 25, 2014


News of: Monday, 23rd of May, 2011

Front Page

Tougher rules for auto workshops

Automobile workshops may no longer be able to operate in residential areas and occupying roads and footpaths, as the government prepares to enforce new rules to stop them causing health hazards and public nuisance.

Move to speed up ADP

An inter-ministerial committee has recommended giving the planning minister the authority to approve projects of up to Tk 40 crore instead of Tk 25 crore to speed up implementation of Annual Development Programme (ADP).

JS budget session starts, BNP away

Speaker Abdul Hamid yesterday urged both ruling and opposition lawmakers to give priority to national interest over their personal and partisan interests, and to nourish democracy wholeheartedly.

Cheers for country, debt for conqueror

Exactly one year back, he conquered the Mount Everest to become the toast of Bangladesh. The whole nation saw him for the first time with incredible awe. A sturdy young man with a broad smile all over his face handed them a mountain of pride out ofthe blue.

Muhit makes it just a year later

Bangladeshi mountaineer MA Muhit conquered Mount Everest Saturday though the news is yet to be confirmed officially.

Crop insurance from next fiscal year

The government will introduce insurance for some specialised crops in the next fiscal year on an experimental basis, Finance Minister AMA Muhith said yesterday.

2 more bodies recovered, death toll 6

Police yesterday recovered the bodies of two more activists of United People's Democratic Front (UPDF), killed in Saturday's deadly attack in Rangamati.

Sahara defends Gen Tarique's views on Limon

Home Minister Sahara Khatun yesterday defended Prime Minister's Defence Adviser Maj Gen (retd) Tarique Ahmed Siddique by saying his remark on Limon Hossain of Jhalakathi is a government statement.

Stop forced labour in brickfields

The High Court (HC) yesterday directed the government to stop forced labour at brickfields and other enterprises by enslaving their employees.

BD Thai sues Khaled for compensation

Bangladeshi Thai Aluminium Ltd yesterday sued stock-scam probe team chief Khandaker Ibrahim Khaled claiming Tk 100 crore compensation for publishing “false” and “fabricated” statement about the company.

DAB leader Zahid held

Police yesterday arrested Doctors' Association of Bangladesh Secretary General AZM Zahid, who is also a member of BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia's advisory council, in connection with the the Nakhalpara land subsidence early Saturday.

More low-cost flats for the middle class

The government is going to construct 168 residential flats for the middle income earners in Dohar upazila on the outskirts of the capital.

India okays fund for Akhaura rail link

India has approved Rs 251 crore (approximately Tk 408 crore) for the construction of a 14 km railway track to connect India's Agartala with Akhaura of Bangladesh.

US would repeat bin Laden raid

US President Barack Obama has said he would order a similar operation to that which killed Osama Bin Laden if another militant leader was found in Pakistan.

IO given one more month for probe

A Dhaka court yesterday gave Criminal Investigation Department one month more for further investigation into the August 21, 2004 grenade attack on an Awami League rally.

Bangladeshi peacekeepers safe in Sudan

All the Bangladeshi peacekeepers working in the UN mission in Sudan are safe, said the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Directorate yesterday, amid escalating crisis between the North and South Sudan.

Four more bodies found

With the recovery of four more bodies, the death toll in Friday's boat capsize in the Meghna rose to nine yesterday.

JU expels 4 students

Jahangirnagar University (JU) authorities yesterday expelled four students for a year for harassing female students on the campus.

Ex-MP Tripti held with his licensed revolver

Former BNP lawmaker Mofiqul Hasan Tripti was sent to Jessore jail yesterday following his arrest on charge of carrying loaded firearms inside airport.

DoE fines 2 mills in in Ctg

The Department of Environment (DoE) in separate drives yesterday fined two textile mills more than Tk 50 lakh on charge of polluting the river Karnaphuli.

Spanish polls open amid mass protests

Spain is voting in regional elections as thousands of young protesters remain camped out in squares across the country yesterday.

Bus operators given fare chart

As the bus operators continued to overcharge passengers in the capital, the government yesterday circulated a fare chart asking them to display it in their vehicles and charge accordingly.

Editorial

BNP abstaining from JS

We are sorry that the opposition BNP has decided to remain absent from the parliament in the current session. It is all but clear to us that the reason it had joined, and that too very briefly, the last session of the parliament, was possibly only to prevent their seats being declared vacant. We feel that the party's position is not only irrational, it is impolitic and dysfunctional for democracy, for itself and for the state, and above all, it is a letdown of its supporters who are being kept unrepresented in the parliament for a long time.

When the ground caves in

The subsidence of a construction site in the city's Nakhalpara area on Saturday demonstrates once more the near impunity with which some owners of projected new buildings operate. There have been instances in the recent past of buildings collapsing owing to faulty construction, putting lives at risk. And every time such incidents have occurred, there have been fresh calls for inquiries and the need for a strict monitoring and implementation of building codes. It now appears that while a new disaster may ignite calls for corrective action, such calls remain confined to being lip service in the end.

Sports

Sk Jamal hot on Muktis' heels

Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club moved to within a point of leaders Muktijodhha Sangsad with a 2-1 win over Farashganj Sporting Club in the Bangladesh League encounter at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.

Shakib to join Worcs after IPL

There will be no respite for Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan, who will be joining his English county side early next month.

WI falter too

Tanvir Ahmed scored a maiden 50 and then took a wicket in his first over as Pakistan wrested back the initiative from West Indies on the second day of the second Test on Saturday.

Huge win for MSC

Salma's unbeaten half-century paved Moha-mmedan Sporting Club's way to a seven-wicket win over BKSP in the second phase of the 3rd Women's Club Cup cricket tournament at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium yesterday.

Gayle puts RCB atop

Chris Gayle smashed an unbeaten 75 as Royal Challengers Bangalore topped the points table with an eight-wicket win over Chennai Super Kings in the Indian Premier League on Sunday.

PCB wants SL series to be played in Pakistan

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has asked Sri Lanka Cricket "for their views" on the prospect of playing their series later this year in Pakistan instead of Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka were the last team to play international cricket in Pakistan -- their tour in March 2009 was cut short after terrorists attacked their team bus as it was on the way to the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore for the second Test.

Warne won't come back

Shane Warne is ready to move on with the next chapter of his life after calling time on his career as professional cricketer and has asked his fellow Australians not to pester him with questions about a comeback.

Eoin overtakes Ravi

Eoin Morgan won the race for the vacancy in England's middle-order when he was named in a 12-man squad on Sunday for the first Test against Sri Lanka, seeing off the challenge of Ravi Bopara.

Quiet start at Roland Garros

Gusty winds and half-empty stands gave no sense of the usual Parisian glamour as last year's French Open runner-up Samantha Stosur began with an easy win on Sunday and Lleyton Hewitt pulled out injured.

Cambridge champions of school rugby

Cambridge High School became champions of the Cooline AC School Rugby Competition-2011, beating Madartek School & College 5-0 in the final at the Birshreshtha Mostafa Kamal Stadium in Kamalapur yesterday.

Bangladesh announce TT teams

Bangladesh have announced a twelve-member team for the Bangabandhu International Invitational Youth Table Tennis Championship that starts on Tuesday. The twelve member team comprises four male players, four female players, two officials, a coach and an assistant coach.

Vettel edges out Hamilton

Red Bull's Formula One world champion Sebastian Vettel took his fourth win in five races on Sunday in a Spanish Grand Prix that shed its reputation for predictable processions.

GP Open squash

In the premier division of the Grameenphone Open Squash Tournament at the Dhaka Club yesterday, Shopon defeated Ram Jagadish by 11-5,8-11,11-7,7-11,11-8 points, Shumon defeated Dilu by 11-8,8-11,11-8,11-6 points while Shahid defeated Raju Ram by 4-11,11-9,11-2,13-11 points.

Wozniacki's fourth title

Top-ranked Caroline Wozniacki overcame a thigh injury to defeat China's Peng Shuai 2-6, 6-3, 6-3 and win the inaugural Brussels Open.

Depor relegated

Former champions Deportivo La Coruna were relegated from La Liga on the final day of the season, a 2-0 defeat at home to Valencia ending a 20-year stay in the Spanish top flight.

Del Neri, Juve part ways

Juventus coach Luigi Del Neri has been sacked and will leave after Sunday's final game of the season against Napoli as the once mighty club again try desperately to rediscover former glories.

Schalke end in style

Schalke 04 won the German Cup for the fifth, crushing second division Duisburg 5-0 to book a Europa League spot as Manuel Neuer lifted the trophy in probably his final game for the club.

Fifa not corrupt, says Blatter

FIFA is not a corrupt organisation and there is no evidence to support recent accusations of wrongdoing within the world governing body, according to president Sepp Blatter.

Wunderkind catches Loew’s eye

Schalke 04 goal-scorer Julian Draxler was barely old enough to join his team-mates for a celebration beer after winning the German Cup final, but the wunderkind has impressed national coach Joachim Loew.

Ronaldo breaks scoring record

Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo set a La Liga record of 40 goals in a season when he netted twice in the 8-1 rout of Almeria on Saturday.

On top of Everest

He failed in his first attempt, but former New Zealand cricketer Adam Parore was successful the second time around as he reached the summit of Mount Everest despite running out of oxygen and "freaking out" several times on his way up.

Business

Stocks plunge as minister rules out black money

Share prices fell on the twin bourses for a third day as the finance minister ruled out investments of black money in the stockmarket. Talk of the government imposing tax on capital gains and mandatory tax identification numbers also dented investor confidence.

Tax hike fears fuel car prices

Prices of reconditioned cars go up by around 10 percent well before the budget, anticipating a tax hike for the next fiscal year.

WB signs $120m loan for economic zones

The World Bank (WB) has agreed to lend Bangladesh $120 million to help set up economic zones for the emerging manufacturing and services sectors.

Bangladesh to get 60,000 hectares for farming in Uganda

Uganda is interested to allocate up to 60,000 hectares of land to Bang-ladeshi entrepreneurs for commercial farming in the east African country, its Honorary Consul to Bangladesh said yesterday.

Minister sad at 'digital Bangladesh' pace

The ICT minister himself has vented frustration over the poor pace in materialising the government's 'Digital Bangladesh' vision.

Bourses oppose market watch by intelligence agents

Dhaka and Chittagong stock exchanges yesterday asked the government to stop market monitoring by different intelligence agencies, which is creating panic among retail investors, officials of the twin bourses said.

Islami Bank re-elects top brass

Abu Nasser Muhammad Abduz Zaher has recently been re-elected chairman of Islami Bank Bangladesh Ltd.

Call to ensure people's participation in budget

The government should ensure people's participation in the process of formulating the national budget, while the draft budget should be made public three months prior to its formal presentation to the parliament, speakers said at a press conference yesterday.

Islamic banking seminar begins in Dhaka tomorrow

A two-day international seminar of 300 local and foreign delegates will start tomorrow in Dhaka to discuss the strength and success of Islamic banking.

Carriers to revamp tablet service pricing

Mobile service providers are reworking charges for wireless connections on tablet computers to lure in customers put off by costly fees.

Low paddy prices for lack of storage

Farmers in 16 northern districts have to sell paddy to commission agents or middlemen, for a shortage of storage capacities and as the government is yet to begin food procurement.

Confusion over govt plans

More than 8,500 rice mills in the country, out of a total 17,000, remain idle as the food department has not yet signed an agreement with them to supply rice to the government, said Bangladesh Auto Major and Husking Mill Owners Association officials.

Britain endorses Lagarde as new IMF chief

Britain endorsed French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde as an "outstanding candidate" for IMF chief on Saturday, the first G7 country to officially back her as Dominique Strauss-Kahn's successor.

Mobile Wallet roll-out starts with small change

Virtual wallet technology that lets people pay for a coffee, newspaper or sandwich by swiping a cell phone at a checkout is finally set to start rolling out, executives told the Reuters Technology Summit this week in Paris.

IMF chief should not be chosen on nationality: G20 group

Merit, not nationality, should determine who replaces Dominique Strauss-Kahn as the chief of the IMF, the finance ministers of Australia and South Africa said in a joint statement on Sunday.

Tata Steel to axe up to 1,500 jobs in Britain

Indian steelmaker Tata Steel is to axe up to 1,500 jobs at two sites in northeastern England, the company announced Friday as it blamed weak demand for its products.

IBM briefly tops Microsoft in market value

IBM briefly topped Micro-soft in market value on Wall Street on Friday to become the second-largest technology company after Apple.

Wall Street hears drumbeat of disappointing data

US equities markets face an array of data next week on the state of the fragile economic recovery, which recent indicators show is hitting some fairly rough patches.

Metropolitan

Tk 100cr project for Aila-hit people soon

A consortium of international NGOs has initiated a Tk 100 crore project to improve food security and livelihoods of over two lakh people in Khulna and Satkhira affected by the cyclone Aila two years back.

Rita's husband, three others charged

A Dhaka court yesterday framed charges against four people, including the husband for the death of Farzana Kabir Rita and her two children in Jurain last year.

HC asks for not to sell expired drugs

The High Court yesterday asked the government and Dhaka Medical College and Hospital authorities not to sell its expired medicines through auction or through any other means.

Law for punishment soon: Minister

The government will enact a law with a provision of punishment to both the recruiting agencies and overseas jobseekers for exchanging extra charges in the recruitment process of foreign jobs, said Expatriates' Welfare Minister Khandker Mosharraf Hossain yesterday.

City construction site collapse: Ordeal of victims still on

Speechless Abul Kalam Azad, 45, one of the victims of Nakhalpara construction site disaster, was found sitting alone at a corner while everything that he had in his house were being demolished by the bulldozers and disappeared under the sands.

80 new BRTC buses to hit city roads May 13

Eighty new buses will hit the city roads on Thursday amid an acute crisis for transport and a chaotic situation in transport sector since price of compressed natural gas was raised on May 13.

Call for coordinated efforts to manage water resources

Speakers at a workshop yesterday stressed the need for coordinated management of fishery, water and water reservoirs of the country for proper management of the country's natural resources.

'Protect rivers around city'

Speakers at a human chain yesterday stressed on collaborative efforts from all stakeholders to protect dying (to be unable to sustain life) rivers around the city from grabbers and pollution.

Domestic help dies after fall

A teenage domestic help died after falling from the staircase railing when she was entertaining her master's children by riding the railings at a multi-storied building in the city's Shantinagar last night.

PM listens to BNP men in Canada

In a unique gesture Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina approached BNP activists who gathered in front of her hotel in Toronto on Saturday afternoon and listened to them.

Teacher among 10 hurt in BCL attack at Polytechnic Institute

At least 10 students and a teacher of Cox's Bazar Polytechnic Institute were injured in an attack by a group of institute-unit Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) activists yesterday.

PM to arrive in France Wednesday

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will arrive in France from Canada on Wednesday to attend the global partnership programmes on girls' and women's education next day.

Woman killed under train's wheels

A woman was crushed under the wheels of a Chittagong University shuttle train at Chowdhuryhat in Hathazari Upazila yesterday.

Pro-AL cable operators clash

Two groups of pro-Awami League (AL) cable television providers clashed with firearms to establish dominance over the business in the port city yesterday.

'Ensure safe water to check cholera'

Speakers yesterday called upon the government to stop cholera disease research on the country's people by International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (ICDDR, B).

Obituary

Physician Akhteruzzaman Sha-mim, former student of Sir Salimullah Medical College, passed away due to a cardiac arrest on Saturday night at the age of 43.

Death anniversary

Today is the seventh death anniversary of Asia Khatun, mother of film producer and photographer Suman Shams, says a press release.

National

Storms kill two, destroy hundreds of houses

At least two people were killed and hundreds of houses damaged as storms lashed several districts yesterday and the day before.

Case goes to DB, most accused still at large

Limon Mishra murder case, filed by the victim's father with Dinajpur Police Station on May 4, was transferred to the detective branch of police yesterday afternoon.

Grabbers occupy most land requisitioned for refugees

Most of 3,602 acres of land in four upazilas of Nilphamari district, requisitioned by the then Pakistan government during 1947-1952 to accommodate refugees from India, is now under illegal occupation due to lack of proper maintenance by the authorities.

Indefinite transport strike in SW region

Transport owners and workers jointly enforced an indefinite strike on all 18 routes in the south-western (S-W) region yesterday demanding ban on plying of human haulers Nasimon and Karimon and illegal battery-run vehicles.

BNP dissidents in Khulna city float new platform

Internal feud in Khulna city BNP surfaced anew as dissidents have floated a new platform named Bangladesh Nationalist Party United Movement (BNPUM).

Three outlaws arrested in Pabna, C'nawabganj

Police arrested three members of two outlawed parties in Pabna and Chapainawabganj yesterday and the day before.

Three children raped

Three kids were raped in Panchagarh and Patuakhali districts on Saturday and Thursday.

3 abducted kids rescued, one arrested in Kushtia

Police rescued three abducted children and arrested one person in this connection in the town yesterday.

Abducted trader freed

Police rescued a kidnapped businessman and arrested three people in this connection from Moni Bazar area under Rajpara police station in the city Saturday night.

Transport strike threatened

Leaders of Gaibandha transport owners association and bus-truck workers union at a press conference on Saturday warned that they would go for an indefinite transport strike from May 26, if their four-point demand is not fulfilled by May 25.

3 electrocuted in Bogra

Three people, including a young girl, were electrocuted in Adamdighi upazila Saturday night as they came in contact with a snapped electric wire at a field at Domdoma village in Adamdighi at about 11:00pm, said Mostafizur Rahman, sub-inspector of Adamdighi police station. Two of the deceased were identified as Mohammad Ferdaus, 22, and Mohammad Apple, 21. Identity of the young girl could not be known immediately.

Murder suspect arrested

Police arrested an alleged accused in the case for killing of shrimp cultivator Abdul Latif Karikar in Kaliganj upazila on Saturday night. Arrestee Safiqul Islam Sardar, 30, is son of Akher Ali Sardar of Manpur village in the same upazila. Abdul Latif Karikar, 40, son of Shahadat Ali Karikar of Nengi village was strangled by unidentified criminals at Nengi Beel (water body) in Kaliganj upazila on May 18 night. Karikar was killed while he was asleep at the makeshift house at his shrimp enclosure at Nengi.

Two schoolboys drown

Two schoolboys drowned in Chakrada canal at Shibpur yesterday. Family sources said, Sajib,7, and Shanta,8, students of class II and III respectively of Shibpur Government Model Primary School were returning home at Chakrada village after school hour at about 2:00pm. On the way, both went for a bath in Chakrada canal and were washed away by current. Their bodies were found floating downstream at about 5:00pm.

Orientation for UP chairmen

Local Governance Support Project-Learning and Innovation Component (GSP-LIC) organisd an orientation course on development project and financial management in the conference room of the deputy commissioner's office on May 19 and 20. Seventy-eight newly elected union parishad (UP) chairmen took part in the course that was inaugurated by Abdus Samad, deputy commissioner of Satkhira. Swapan Kumar Sarkar, director general of Local Government Division and National Project Director of LGSP-LIC, was the the chief guest. UNDP's local government advisor Dr Tofail Ahmed and Assistant Country Director Shaila Khan were present as resource persons.

Letters

Thanks to the Finance Minister

The news about the government trying to make changes in the ACC which makes it compulsory for the anti-graft body to take permission of the government before filing corruption cases against government officials stunned me by its absurdity that I felt disinclined even to write about it.

Save Buriganga

Buriganga, the lifeline of Dhaka city, has been polluted severely. Chemical wastes from dyeing factories, dumping of sewage, etc., are making the water unusable. If we can't stop polluting the river now, it will soon become a dead river. Besides, illegal grabbing has hindered the natural flow of the river. Recent surveys claim that in some parts of Buriganga, the level of pollution is so high wherein no fish can survive! We, the general people as well as the DCC and other authorities should come forward to save Buriganga.

Obama's Middle East plan

In a keynote policy speech last Thursday, President Obama calling for an Israel-Palestine peace deal based on 1967 borders is indeed commendable. If the deal which Obama has outlined in his speech is espoused by both Israel and Palestine this will herald a new era in the Middle East and open the door for peace and stability to both Israel and Palestine state and put an end to age-old hostility between the two nations that cost hundreds of thousands of civilian casualties to both nations.

Beggars back on streets!

Beggars are back on the streets and Dhaka is now once again the dirty, filthy city it was before the ICC World Cup. So do Bengalis exist just to impress foreigners? Don't the people of Bangladesh have any value in the eyes of the government? It goes to show that if the government wants to, it can take the necessary steps to eliminate beggars from the streets and keep the city clean.

In quest of better treatment

Well-to-do people from Bangladesh travel abroad in quest of better treatment all the year round. I would like to relate a different story contrary to popular belief of availing better treatment abroad.

Verdict on caretaker government

The Supreme Court of Bangladesh in a landmark verdict has declared the Article related to the Caretaker Government void and at the same time has allowed the next two Bangladesh general elections to be held under the Caretaker Government. This seems to me a bit self-contradictory. I will explain this in an allegorical form.

Pakistani scientist's unwise comments

We are really vexed at the comment of Dr. Abdul Quader Khan - the Pakistani nuclear scientist. It is a worthless comment about the emergence of independent Bangladesh. It is also insulting to the freedom fighters of Bangladesh, who made supreme sacrifices for the country. Dr Quader should know that the emergence of Bangladesh was historically inevitable.

Fatah and Hamas united

It is heartening to know that rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas proclaimed a landmark, Egyptian-mediated reconciliation pact aimed at ending their bitter four-year rift. This is indeed a pragmatic move towards establishing a peaceful independent home for the Palestinians. It is hoped that in course of implementation of the pact, both the sides will apply their conscience and goodwill to keep their unity unhurt in their greater interest. And I think Israel has nothing to worry about, rather they should welcome the move and help reset peace talk for the good of both Israelis and the Palestinians.

Am I a miser!

If you come to Ishwardi Govt College you will still find the windows of the principal's office broken. The Principal's staunch decision to enroll the honours students on the basis of merit made the ruling party student leaders angry and hence the violence.

Time is relative, for us and political parties

One day, I was stuck in a traffic jam for more than four hours. Some hotshot political leader returned from abroad to Bangladesh, and the party members thought it would be a good idea to show their loyalty by bringing out a procession on the main street. I guess they forgot that as a metropolitan city, Dhaka does not have the required 25% road area. As a result, the followers made sure that the arrival of the political leader is etched in our memories forever, as a horrible reminder how 'considerate' our political parties are towards the public. It is high time for them to realize that there is a place and time for everything, and the main streets and roads are for commuting, not processions.

Retirement age of medical teachers

The retirement age for teachers of government medical colleges is 57 years, but for government university teachers, including teachers of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University, the retirement age is now 65 years. Recently, in India the retirement age of medical college teachers has been raised to 65 years.

Flat-out failure

Special Envoy George Mitchell resigned, clearly angry at the lack of support his peace efforts received from the White House - and his resignation letter was about as curt and cold as any in recent memory. The announcement of his resignation followed reports that the president's Thursday speech on the Middle East will, amazingly, say virtually nothing about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Free electricity!

A splendid picture, published on 16th May in the pages of a local English daily, depicts the subject of free electricity supply lucidly! It says it all; without writing a single word on the matter! The hanging plug-in boards are there freely available (or is there a hire charge for plugging-in?). It supplies all the electricity you may need! Splendid power supply source indeed! It can be seen by all passers-by; like it was seen and photographed by an inquisitive reporter!

International

India's UPA govt steps into third year

It is possibly the worst of time for India's Congress-led UPA government which yesterday stepped into its third year of its second successive five-year tenure hemmed by a series of major scams and failure to make much headway on economic reforms in a big way.

Pakistan's India obsession a mistake: Obama

Pakistan's obsession with India that makes it look at its neighbour as an “existential threat” is a mistake and it would do well to shed this contest mentality, US President Barack Obama has said yesterday.

Gulf countries fund Pakistani militancy

Donors in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are sending an estimated $100 million annually to radical Islamic schools in Pakistan that back militancy, according to a leaked US diplomatic cable published yesterday.

Train, jeep collision Kills 17 in India

At least 17 people were killed when an express train collided with a crowded jeep which was driving across an unmanned railway crossing in the eastern Indian state of Bihar, police said yesterday.

No work done by Left govt in WB: Mamata

Taking stock of the functioning of various departments, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Saturday attacked the Left Front rule in West Bengal, saying "practically no work" has been done.

Yemen transition deal falls through

Western and Gulf diplomats failed yesterday to persuade Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh to sign a deal that would ease him out of power and make him the third Arab leader ousted by popular protests, diplomats said.

Al-Qaeda chief warns of new London attack

Al-Qaeda's new leader Saif al-Adel has vowed to launch attacks on London to avenge Osama bin Laden's killing by US special forces in his Abbottabad compound in Pakistan. The Sun quoted Taliban chiefs as saying that 51-year-old al-Adel is determined to make Britain and the US pay a price for killing his group's leader.

N Sudan takes control of disputed Abyei

Sudan's northern army has taken control of the disputed Abyei region and is clearing it of armed groups from the South, a minister from the northern government said yesterday.

Differences with Obama exaggerated: Netanyahu

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rejected talk of a crisis in Israeli-US relations ahead of a speech yesterday by Barack Obama to a pro-Israel group which could give the president a cool reception.

Ocean floor moved 79 feet sideways

The 8.9-magnitude earthquake which triggered a massive tsunami and devastated coastal region of Japan was so powerful that it shifted the ocean floor sideways by 79 feet, scientists have claimed yesterday.

Ex-IMF chief's wife mortgages mansion to raise bail bond

Disgraced former IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn's wife has put her mansion in the US on the block to raise US dollars six million as bail bond to get her husband, facing sexual assault charges, released from New York's Rikers Island prison, a media report said.

Series of blasts kill fifteen in Iraq

Explosions killed at least 15 people and wounded 74 in the Baghdad area yesterday, including a suicide bombing targeting Iraqi soldiers north of the capital, security officials said.

US had inside info of Laden's hideout

Pakistan Interior Minister Rehman Malik believes the US had a mole right inside Osama bin Laden's Abbottabad hideout and this was how the al-Qaeda chief was tracked down to the compound, a media report said yesterday.

Woman scales Mount Everest twice in 10 days

A woman from Arunachal Pradesh created history by climbing Mount Everest twice in 10 days and also became the first woman mountaineer in the world to achieve the feat twice in the same season.

Britain pulls out troops from Iraq

Britain was withdrawing its troops yesterday from Iraq, ending a role that began with the 2003 US-led invasion to topple Saddam Hussein, British defence officials said.

Did US ignore Benazir's security fears?

Did America fail to do enough to help protect Benazir Bhutto? Just two months before her assassination and only days after she had returned from an 8-year exile to contest the Pakistan elections, Bhutto had asked the United States to evaluate her security and recommend additional resources for maximum safety. The US Embassy in Pakistan strongly recommended not doing this.

Arts & Entertainment

1st Dhaka International Theatre Fest by ITI, Bangladesh Kicks Off

'1st Dhaka International Theatre Fest', organised by Bangladesh Centre of the International Theatre Institute (ITI), opened at the National Theatre Hall of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) on May 21. Ramundu Majumdar, the President (worldwide) of ITI formally inaugurated the 10-day programme, while Information and Cultural Minister Abul Kalam Azad was present as the chief guest. Also present as special guests were Director General of BSA, Liakat Ali Lucky and Secretary General of Bangladesh Group Theatre Federation (BGTF), Jhuna Chowdhury.

Nazrul Memorial Centres: In Dire Need of Attention

Nazrul memorabilia at two Smriti Kendra (memorial centres) in villages Kazir Shimla and Namapara, of Darirampur, Trishal draw the attention of visitors far and wide.

Exhibition featuring north-east Indian painters

Bengal Gallery of Fine Arts, in collaboration with Kirat (an organisation of artists from north-east India), is holding an art exhibition titled “Ishan Baibhab” featuring works of 28 painters from Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Nagaland, Tripura, Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim. The exhibition begins today and will continue till May 29 at Bengal Gallery of Fine Arts in Dhanmondi.

Monirul Islam's solo exhibition at Gallery Chitrak

Gallery Chitrak will hold a solo art exhibition featuring noted Bangladeshi expatriate painter-printmaker Monirul Islam. The exhibition will begin on May 27 and will continue till June 15.

Tough Choice for Jury as Cannes Curtain Comes Down

The Cannes film festival jury led by Robert De Niro faces a tough choice as it picks the winner of the Palme d'Or top prize, with movies from Finland, Spain, the United States and France all in the frame.

DS Café

This month DS Café will have popular actor Mahfuz Ahmed take your calls. Readers will have the opportunity to converse with him on different issues and interesting aspects of his memorable roles. Call 8126155 on May 25, between 3 and 4pm, to speak to Mahfuz Ahmed!!!

Street theatre festival in Kishoreganj

A three-day long street theatre festival in Kishoreganj ended recently.

Amar Bondhu Rashed screened in Manikganj

“Amar Bondhu Rashed”, a film based on the Liberation War directed by Morshedul Islam and produced by Impress Telefilm Ltd, was screened at Captain Abdul Halim Chowdhury auditorium in Manikganj last Friday afternoon.

OP-ED

Hike in bus fare and its fallout

Raise in bus fares in the government-run transport service, the Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation (BRTC), within the span of a week of increasing the price of Compressed Natural Gas by the Bangladesh Energy Regulatory Commission (BERC) has enraged the regular commuters in the city. Unsurprisingly, altercations while charging fares by transport staff from bus passengers often lead to fisticuffs between them. Such scene has become common on the different city bus service routes since May 19, the day the officially announced fair hike took effect.

Claim game, blame game

When is a man at his most generous? When he wants to forgive himself, of course.

Obama's hot feeler triggers more confusion

President Obama has again come out with yet another hot-feeler. The "Arab spring" speech he delivered on May 19 -- viewed by many as a possible breakthrough in the American policy towards the Middle East -- is yet another "strategic" ploy to mask Washington's long-term goals in the region. Think-tanks may initiate a debate on whether it is the "beginning" of a "new end" in the US policy, but Obama's disorientated analysis of the "Arab spring" offered hardly anything substantial.

Get your piece of pie, Mr. Investor

Hello, Mr. Investor! Yes, I am talking to you. Right now you might be in front of the DSE or SEC protesting against the very recent price decline in the stock market. Does it really make sense? Should government do anything against short-term price decline? Why are you really wasting your time? Don't spend your time in front of DSE; it wouldn't make much difference in share prices. Spend the same time to do some research about the market.

The promise of protection

It is widely agreed that crises create opportunities of sorts. As the Asia-Pacific region slowly emerges from the recession of 2008 and attempts to cope with the after-effects of a food crisis and natural disasters -- including that which took place in highly-prepared Japan -- governments are looking anew at ways to mitigate the rising insecurity and heightened social risks experienced by millions of people across the region, especially those living in or close to poverty.

This Day In History

May 23

1915
World War I: Italy joins the Allies after they declare war on Austria-Hungary.


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