News of: Wednesday, 1st of June, 2011
The parliamentary special committee on constitutional amendment yesterday urged BNP to come up with proposals if they want to maintain the caretaker government system, apparently for putting pressure on the main opposition.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said now there is no way to maintain the caretaker government system after the Supreme Court declared it illegal.
BNP has rejected the government move to scrap the caretaker government system, terming it a ploy to destroy democracy and a blueprint to establish one-party rule.
Food prices could double in the next 20 years and demand in 2050 will be 70 percent higher than now, UK charity Oxfam said yesterday, warning of worsening hunger as the global food economy stumbles close to breakdown.
The FBCCI chief fears a return of political uncertainty in the country and said the business community do not want another 1/11-like situation.
The Mauritius government has displayed a rare example of care to the families of the 11 Bangladeshi workers killed in a road accident in the island nation on January 12 this year.
Awami League has forgotten its slain leader Shah AMS Kibria, let alone ensuring justice to his killing, claimed Asma Kibria, widow of the former finance minister.
Just a week after deciding to issue machine readable passports (MRPs) to over three lakh undocumented Bangladeshi workers in Malaysia, expatriates' welfare minister yesterday opted for handwritten ones.
Jatiya Party Chairman HM Ershad yesterday hinted participating in the next election independently if BNP boycotts it.
Investigators yesterday handed over to the prosecution team the final report on the allegations against detained Jamaat-e-Islami Nayeb-e-Ameer Delawar Hossain Sayedee in connection with committing crimes against humanity during the 1971 Liberation War.
Five eminent personalities of the country yesterday expressed concern over recent remarks by some government high-ups defending Rab shooting of college student Limon Hossain.
You do not have to be in the exam hall, not even in the country, to get your results.
The United States will suspend its Millennium Development Accounts (MDA) contribution for Bangladesh until an honourable solution is reached over the issue of Nobel laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus, and the Grameen Bank he founded, BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia was told during her just-concluded US visit.
An abduction case was filed against two officials of Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) and two officials of Dhaka Central Jail with a Dhaka court yesterday.
The government has decided to increase the price of urea fertiliser from Tk 12 to Tk 20 a kilogram due to the price hike in the international market.
The High Court (HC) yesterday upheld a Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) court verdict regarding a convicted jawan of the paramilitary force for his involvement in the Pilkhana massacre in February 2009.
Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has claimed that Dominique Strauss-Kahn may be the victim of a shadowy conspiracy to force him out of his job as head of the International Monetary Fund.
Two Australian soldiers have been killed in Afghanistan with one of them shot dead by a local trooper who then fled the scene, the government said yesterday.
The prime minister's 'no' to the caretaker system of government opens up a new debate on the future of politics in Bangladesh. To be sure, Sheikh Hasina has based her opinion on the recent judgement by the higher judiciary to the effect that the caretaker system lacks legality. We recall too that the judiciary has also suggested that the next two elections may be conducted under such a system. Obviously, the prime minister felt it necessary to emphasise the clear verdict of the court rather than its observation on elections in the immediate future.
The much awaited National Health Policy, 2011 aimed to ensure good health for all has been approved by the government. Although it is a belated fulfillment of one of the AL government's major election pledges it is to be commended for some of its good, forward-looking features.
Lethargic at times and brooding at others, Andy Murray worked his way into the French Open quarterfinals by coming back to beat Victor Troicki 4-6, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, 7-5 on Tuesday in a match that started a day earlier.
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) has started their work to make a domestic calendar for the coming season.
Swapan Parvez became Grameenphone Open Squash tournament champion (Premier Division) yesterday.
Pakistan's Shahid Afridi told AFP on Monday he was retiring from all international cricket, saying he was dejected after being replaced as one-day captain following a fiery clash with coach Waqar Younis.
The final of the recurve junior men's team final of the Asian Youth Archery Championships got underway amid light drizzle and windy weather at the Army Stadium in Dhaka where India took gold edging hosts Bangladesh out by 189-183 points after some fierce competition.
The High Court yesterday slapped an injunction on Mohammedan Sporting Club Limited barring it from holding elections for the next three months.
Maria Sharapova has vowed to put years of clay court under-achievement behind her, starting with victory over German 15th seed Andrea Petkovic in Wednesday's French Open quarterfinals.
Pakistani greats expressed dismay Tuesday at Shahid Afridi's shock decision to quit international cricket, as officials said the "doors are open" for the influential all-rounder's return.
Record-breaking batsman Sachin Tendulkar on Tuesday received India's cricketer-of-the-year award for his outstanding performances in 2009-2010.
The PCB has requested national coach Waqar Younis to return to Pakistan after the Ireland tour, instead of going to Australia, to discuss manager Intikhab Alam's report on the West Indies tour. Waqar was supposed to go to Australia to see his wife, who is unwell, but has been asked to return to Pakistan if her illness is not serious.
FIFA President Sepp Blatter has shrugged off the corruption allegations engulfing football's governing body, denying the sport is in crisis and ruling out a new vote for the 2022 World Cup.
The English Football Association called Tuesday for the scandal-tainted FIFA presidential election to be postponed to give "any alternative reforming candidate" to Sepp Blatter a chance to stand.
Anti-corruption watchdog Transparency International (TI) said Tuesday the sleaze-tainted presidential election at football's global ruling body FIFA should be postponed.
Key commercial partners of FIFA brandished the yellow card Tuesday at football's world governing body over a welter of corruption allegations, saying they had tarnished the image of the beautiful game.
Mohamed bin Hammam is "still the president" of Asian football, his Chinese deputy Zhang Jilong insisted Tuesday despite being confirmed as acting chief while the Qatari faces a corruption probe.
AC Milan coach Massimiliano Allegri has warned Italy forward Antonio Cassano not to expect a place in the first team next season and also told young Brazilian Pato to improve.
Akram Khan will officially take charge of the national selection committee from today.
Patuakhali's Donavan Secondary School reached the final of the Standard Chartered Young Tigers National School competition by beating Faridpur Muslim Mission School by 67 runs at Madaripur Stadium yesterday.
Pakistan completed a 2-0 one-day international series win over Ireland in Belfast with victory by five wickets at Stormont here on Monday that rounded off eight months on the road.
Uncapped Surrey seamer Jade Dernbach was called up into a 12-man England squad on Tuesday for the second Test against Sri Lanka at Lord's starting on Friday after James Anderson was forced out with injury.
Manchester United midfielder Paul Scholes on Tuesday announced his retirement from football with immediate effect and will join the club's coaching staff.
Due to unavoidable circumstances, we could not print the CROSSWORD today. We regret any inconvenience.
The bar on a director of an insurance company to hold the same post in a bank or finance company has turned into a big challenge for the finance minister.
Stocks gained yesterday for a fourth day as investors went for heavy buying following a meeting of the apex trade body with the central bank aimed at increasing credit flow in the market.
Bangladesh's economic growth beat all records this year, riding on buoyant exports and robust agricultural outputs, said the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) yesterday.
The apex trade body yesterday insisted it never lobbied with the Bangladesh Bank to extend the deadline for bringing down the banks' exposure to stockmarket as has reportedly been claimed by the central bank.
The stockmarket regulator yesterday delegated duties and responsibilities to three of its newly appointed members.
Bangladesh must explore alternative markets to boost garment exports in a bid to firm up its position in global trade, said analysts yesterday.
Bangladesh Bank will take a series of steps, including regular meetings with the capital market watchdog, in an effort to stabilise the stockmarket and check any wrongdoing.
Bangladesh's stock of edible oils faces a shortfall of more than two lakh tonnes to meet demand for Ramadan, said importers yesterday.
MJC Amarasuriya, chairman of Commercial Bank of Ceylon, arrives in Dhaka for an official tour, the bank said in a statement yesterday.
Ismail Bhuiyan has recently been appointed sales manager for Bangladesh of Emirates Airline.
The debate on how much the government should charge Grameenphone, Banglalink, Robi and Citycell to renew their licences, has turned around, but not enough. After the Draft Regulatory and Licensing Guidelines proposed by the Bangladesh Telecom Regulatory Commission came under heavy criticism from multiple quarters, the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications under whose authority licensing now falls has decided to make several amendments to the draft. The retrograde utilisation factor has not yet been removed. Implications for Digital Bangladesh do not appear to have been fully thought out.
India's economy expanded at its weakest pace in five quarters, slowing to 7.8 percent in the three months to March, data showed Tuesday, as aggressive interest rate hikes hit output and investment.
While Bangladesh and India have launched shuttle diplomacy to boost bilateral trade, the regional trade issues remained undiscussed among the Saarc (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) nations even though this region is a trade bloc with the lowest trade worldwide.
South Asian regional trade is taking place at levels much below the standards set by other prominent trade blocs across the world. The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) has the potential to become a much more effective regional trade bloc -- if some barriers are removed. Annisul Huq, president of Saarc Chamber of Commerce and Industry, explains in an interview how the barriers can be removed. Huq, a Bangladeshi national, was formerly the president of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry and Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association.
When Premier Wen Jiabao spoke to reporters at the end of China's annual parliamentary session in March, he likened inflation to a wild animal. "Inflation is like a tiger. Once you let it out, it's very hard to cage again," he said solemnly.
Germany plans to shut all nuclear reactors by 2022, Chancellor Angela Merkel's ruling coalition announced on Monday, in a policy reversal drawn up in a rush after the Fukushima disaster in Japan.
The school day has ended but class is not yet over for students heading for their local community centre and a very different sort of classroom -- one built from shipping containers.
Sony Corp said on Tuesday it was not certain when it could fully restore PlayStation Network videogame services in Japan, Hong Kong and South Korea, five weeks after a massive network security breach forced the company to shut them down.
Samsung Electronics will depend on Google's Android mobile-device software to run future versions of its tablet computers, a senior Samsung official said in an interview published Tuesday.
Food prices could double in the next 20 years and demand in 2050 will be 70 percent higher than now, UK charity Oxfam said on Tuesday, warning of worsening hunger as the global food economy stumbles close to breakdown.
Professional networking platform LinkedIn on Tuesday opened its regional headquarters in Singapore and plans to use the city-state as a base to expand its Asia-Pacific presence.
Intel unveiled a new category of laptops that it says will include the best features of tablets as the world's top chipmaker struggles to find its footing in the exploding market for mobile gadgets.
Asian stocks surged on Tuesday, with Tokyo boosted by data showing factory output lifted last month, raising hopes for Japan's recovery from the March 11 earthquake and tsunami.
A group of environmental activists yesterday expressed grave concern over the reluctance of businesspersons to shift warehouses of combustible chemicals from residential area in the capital.
Eleven more people have been infected with anthrax in Sirajganj and Pabna, health officials confirmed yesterday.
Ruling Awami League (AL) has decided not to join a scheduled view-exchange meeting with the Election Commission on June 9.
Law enforcement agencies are to inform National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) about deaths in custody, crossfire and encounter.
Rajshahi City Corporation (RCC) yesterday announced Tk 342.59 crore budget for 2011-12 fiscal year bringing the health services sector under the tax net.
The United Nations (UN) agencies will provide around US$ 1.8 billion as grants for Bangladesh over a period of five years under the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) 2012-2016.
World Food Programme (WFP) has received a contribution of US$30 million from United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for operating its flagship school feeding programme.
Around 25 percent people in Dhaka city are facing eye problems, says a baseline survey.
The government will introduce "smart card" in road transportation to increase quality service to passengers, the communications minister said at the parliament yesterday.
Two brothers were sentenced to death and their father, two other brothers and a brother-in-law to life in jail for killing two contractors of a construction firm in June 2007.
The government is seriously considering banning tobacco cultivation to produce additional food grains on cultivable land for ensuring food security, Food and Disaster Management Minister Abdur Razzaque said yesterday.
Speakers at a discussion yesterday demanded celebration of all the important days during the anti-British movement with state recognition.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday criticised the women organisations for not playing their "due role" on the national women development policy.
A mobile court seized about 52,000kg of substandard seeds of paddy, jute, and mustard from a store of an agriculture seed agency in the district town of Bogra yesterday.
Speaker Abdul Hamid in the parliament yesterday called upon the journalists to keep careful and sincere while reporting on him and issues on parliament proceedings.
Owners of printing presses, book binding shops and paper houses in the city's Motijheel area observed one-hour work abstention from 10:00am yesterday protesting attack on a press owner of the area on May 29.
Speakers at a roundtable stressed the need for organised financial management of political parties to establish intra-party democratic culture and free politics from black money.
The level of oxygen has increased in the recent times in the Buriganga making the river livable for different fish species, State Minister for Environment and Forests Dr Hasan Mahmud told journalists at his office yesterday.
Seven people were killed and 31 others injured in separate road accidents in Gazipur, Naogaon and Natore yesterday.
The World No Tobacco Day was observed across the country yesterday as elsewhere across the world in a befitting manner.
Police arrested a drug peddler along with 100 kg of cannabis and seized a microbus from Road No-11 of CDA at Double Mooring in the port city yesterday.
BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia for the second day yesterday distributed cooked foods and essential commodities among the poor in the city marking the 30th death anniversary of former president Ziaur Rahman.
The classes of different departments of Rajshahi University (RU) are going to resume today after 45 days of summer vacation.
The newly elected office bearers of Chittagong University Teachers' Association (Cuta) led by Prof Ruhul Amin paid a courtesy call on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at her office in the city yesterday.
The country's Pop Guru and freedom fighter Azam Khan, who is on life support in the city's Square Hospital, can move his limbs slightly but he is not out of danger.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is expected to open the national electronic government procurement (e-GP) portal tomorrow for introducing e-tendering in the country.
Two people fell victim to muggers in front of Dhaka Medical College and Hospital while they were out to look for blood for their ailing relative yesterday.
A factory worker was electrocuted at Sanarpar of Demra in the city yesterday.
Today is the 42nd death anniversary of Tofazzal Hossain Manik Mia, a renowned journalist and the founder editor of the daily Ittefaq.
Today is the first death anniversary of Hasina Banu Younus, wife of late Alhaj Ahmed Younus, a former joint secretary of Bangladesh Agriculture Development Corporation and founder president of Rajshahi Zilla Parishad, says a press release.
Jamila Khatun, wife of late Cherag Ali Hawlader and mother of Nazrul Islam, a senior reporter of the daily Prothom Alo, passed away yesterday due to old age complications at the age of 80, says a press release.
Kalapara upazila land office has filed an eviction case against housing company Ocean City Ltd that has continued construction work by occupying khas (government) lands in Kuakata sea beach area.
Peaceful elections were held in 131 unions of 17 districts under the second phase of union parishad polls yesterday.
Khulna BNP yesterday submitted a memorandum to the home minister through the deputy commissioner (DC) demanding withdrawal of the order to drop the Jubo Dal leader Omar Faruque Turjo murder case.
Divisional office of the environment department here has again asked the owners of hotels and restaurants of the city to supply pure drinking water to customers.
Three people were sentenced to death while 11 others to life term imprisonment in separate murder cases in Chandpur, Bagerhat, Munshiganj, Sylhet and Khulna districts on Monday and the day before.
Guards of Barisal Central Jail on Sunday evening picked up a youth and allegedly tortured him inside the jail compound following a trivial matter.
At least 32 people were injured in clashes between the supporters of rival UP chairman and member candidates in Munshiganj, Sherpur and Madaripur district yesterday and on Monday night.
A union parishad (UP) member was killed by unknown assailants in Mollahat upazila of Bagerhat district on Monday night.
A woman and her son were killed when a mud-wall collapsed on them at Merigaccha village in Boraigram upazila on Monday night.
Muammar Gaddafi is emphatic he will not leave Libya, South African President Jacob Zuma said yesterday after talks with the Libyan leader that left prospects for a negotiated end to the conflict looking dim.
Street fighting raged across the Yemeni capital yesterday after a tenuous truce broke down between tribal groups and forces loyal to President Ali Abdullah Saleh, edging the impoverished Arab country closer to civil war.
Pakistani warplanes attacked Taliban positions in the northwestern Orakzai region yesterday, killing 17 militants, a senior regional government official said.
India and Pakistan yesterday concluded a 12th round of talks over a disputed Himalayan glacier where troops have clashed intermittently since 1984 without reporting any progress.
Serbia's war crimes court rejected an appeal against the extradition of Ratko Mladic yesterday, opening the way for the former Bosnian Serb general's dispatch to The Hague to stand trial, a spokeswoman said.
The use of cell phones and other wireless communication devices are "possibly carcinogenic to humans", the World Health Organisation's cancer research agency said yesterday.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai warned yesterday that the US-led foreign military in Afghanistan risks becoming an "occupying force" if air strikes which cause civilian casualties continue.
North and south Sudan have agreed to create a demilitarised zone to bolster security along their border, despite a deadlock over the disputed region of Abyei, the African Union said yesterday.
A decade after Nepal's crown prince stunned the world by gunning down nine family members, mystery still surrounds the massacre that plunged the monarchy into a crisis from which it never recovered.
The Pentagon has adopted a new strategy that will classify major cyber attacks as acts of war, paving the way for possible military retaliation, the Wall Street Journal reported yesterday.
German authorities yesterday battled to stop the spread of a killer bacteria traced to imported cucumbers that has killed at least 16 people, including one outside Germany.
At least 28 members of a wedding party were killed in India's northeastern state of Assam when their bus plunged into a gorge after hitting a wooden bridge, police said yesterday.
Unpopular Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan yesterday refused to step down in the face of a no-confidence motion in parliament this week, saying he wanted first to resolve the world's worst nuclear crisis in 25 years.
Syrian opposition activists convene in Turkey for a three-day meeting to discuss democratic change today and voice support for a simmering revolt against President Bashar al-Assad's regime.
Germany on Monday became the first major industrialised power to agree an end to nuclear power in the wake of the disaster in Japan, with a phase-out to be completed by 2022.
Russian forces arrested in Chechnya Rustam Makhmudov, the suspected assassin of journalist Anna Politkovskaya who was shot dead in 2006, a spokesman for the Chechen police told AFP yesterday.
Ailing former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak is not well enough to moved to prison from his hospital in the Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, the country's public prosecutor said yesterday.
Tajikistan pulled down Central Asia's tallest statue of revolutionary Russian leader Vladimir Lenin as it sought to distance itself from its Soviet past, a city spokesman said yesterday.
Arts & Entertainment
The 1st Dhaka International Theatre Festival ended on May 30 through the staging of Rabindranath Tagore's “Dakghar”. Kalakshetra Manipur, a theatre troupe from the Indian state of Manipur, staged the play at the National Theatre Hall, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy.
Marking 112th birth anniversary of National Poet Kazi Nazrul Islam, Bangladesh National Museum (BNM) arranged a discussion and musical programme at Poet Sufia Kamal Auditorium of BNM on May 30. Noted Nazrul exponent and Vice Chancellor of University of Liberal Arts, Bangladesh, Professor Rafiqul Islam, was the chief guest at the programme.
This month's instalment of Bengal Foundation's musical programme “Praner Khela” highlighted the opulence of Bangla folk music. The soiree was held on May 30 at the Bengal Gallery of Fine Arts, Dhanmondi in Dhaka.
Theatre group Youth Engagement Support (of the district Committee of Concerned Citizens), under Transparency International Bangladesh, held a public performance on anti-corruption recently. Titled “Hurka” (local name for storm), the production was staged at the Kurigram Shilpakala Academy.
Celebrating Life Concert, organised by The Daily Star and the Standard Chartered Bank, was held at Pabna Edward College Auditorium on Monday. The concert featured a performance by Subir Nandi, one of the leading Adhunik singers of the country. Lyricist Mohammad Moniruzzaman discussed on the evolution of Bangla songs on the occasion.
It was watching Matthew Vaughn's 2004 crime thriller “Layer Cake” that made producer Barbara Broccoli think Daniel Craig could make a great James Bond.
A retired deputy head of the BBC's Bengali Service last week gave a new twist to Bangladesh's history through a letter to The Guardian newspaper in London. He was responding to an article by Ian Jack on Bangladesh, which article we will, if we so wish, deal with later. At this point, note what this Bengali gentleman had to say about Bangabandhu's arrival in London on January 8, 1972 following his release from Pakistani detention by the government of President Zulfikar Ali Bhutto.
Uncertainty is the chaotic force-multiplier of insecurity. That is the only explanation, if there is one, for a curious statement made by Pakistan's Prime Minister Yousaf Gilani. When Gilani clambers aboard, he does tend to go overboard with a consistency that is clearly becoming a comfort to foes and an embarrassment to friends.
As India reinforces its engagement with the continent of 53 countries, Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh embarked on a six-day visit to Africa on May23.
It has been over six years. On January 27, 2005, our father, Shah A.M.S. Kibria, former UN Under-Secretary General, finance minister and Member of Parliament of Bangladesh, was brutally assassinated by a grenade attack in Habiganj, Sylhet. We are still waiting for justice.
Globalisation as a strategy for achieving technological competitiveness and industrial development by the developing countries was advocated by WTO in the nineties. The concept was well received by the developing countries with the underlying strength of the argument and perception that their existing low-tech industries would be encouraged/or forced to develop competitive technologies or absorb imported advanced technologies from developed countries to survive against imported low priced quality products. It was also expected that there would be awareness among the entrepreneurs and the planners about the technology-led development in the manufacturing sector.