News of: Sunday, 31st of July, 2011
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India yesterday said it has ordered its Border Security Force not to shoot anyone crossing Indo-Bangla border no matter what the circumstances are.
Bangladesh and India yesterday entered a comprehensive border management deal to strengthen border security and combat smuggling of illegal drugs and weapons and trafficking of women and children.
BNP acting secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir urged the government yesterday to make public the border deal signed with India.
The dreaded dengue fever is back. The number of dengue-affected people in the capital took a sharp rise with 82 new cases reported from July 23 to 28.
At least two persons drowned and seven others went missing as an engine-run boat capsized in the Buriganga after being sandwiched by two cargo boats last night near Banshpotti in Keraniganj just outside the capital.
Helal Uddin, officer-in-charge of Khilgaon Police Station, was suspended yesterday over torture of Dhaka University student Abdul Kadar.
The much-awaited amnesty for irregular foreign workers in Malaysia begins tomorrow amid growing confusion among many Bangladeshi expatriates about their status.
A woman died hours after giving birth to a child at a private hospital in Sirajganj yesterday. Her family blamed the death on negligence of her doctor who let nurses perform the delivery.
The government is going to enact a new law for cooperation of other countries in getting back convicted criminals and siphoned-off money from abroad.
An over 15-hour power cut hit Basabo and Mugdapara in the capital yesterday causing terrible suffering to residents as the power distributors failed to install a device on schedule.
A special envoy of the Maldives president handed over a formal letter of invitation to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday for attending the 17th Saarc Summit scheduled for November 10-11 in the Maldives.
Road communication between 11 northern districts and the capital was suspended for throughout the day yesterday due to a wildcat strike by the district's motor vehicle owners and workers.
Two condemned killers of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman -- Moslehuddin Khan and Abdul Mazed -- might be hiding in India, and Delhi has assured Dhaka of making all efforts to apprehend and hand them over to it.
A sportswear factory owner sustained bullet injuries yesterday as a group of armed youths shot at him allegedly to extort money in the capital's Badamtoli area.
The secret grand jury testimony given by former US President Richard Nixon over the Watergate scandal is set to be released after more than 36 years, following an order by a federal judge.
Two villagers and a minor boy gave their life in a bid to protect a young woman from rape by some youngsters at noon yesterday in remote Rupashipara of Naikongchhari upazila.
A leading scientist has indicated that social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter have created a generation obsessed with themselves, who have short attention spans and a childlike desire for constant feedback on their lives.
Drug traffickers faced with restrictions to transit routes through Asia and the Middle East are turning to eastern Africa, driving up instability and increasing substance abuse, a United Nations report said.
Four children were killed and two more injured in a landslide in a village in Indonesia's South Sumatra province, an official said yesterday.
Heavy rains claimed their first victim in Japan yesterday and others were missing as floods saw nearly half a million people being urged to leave the central Niigata region and tsunami-hit Fukushima.
We welcome the swift move taken by the High Court on the police maltreatment of Dhaka University student Abdul Kadar last week. It has ordered investigation by a committee and directed the IG Police to place the two concerned police officials under suspension during investigation.
With more people crowding the seashore round the year the incidence of drowning has increased at Cox's Bazar. In the latest tragedy, three young men, one of them a promising singer, were swept away by the waves while swimming at Kolatoli point on Friday evening. Worse, they were suspected to have been trapped in quicksand.
The small wooden floor basketball Gymnasium in Dhanmondi adjacent to the Abahani Club ground turned into an arena of celebrations yesterday as hosts Bangladesh overpowered West Bengal by 87-68 points in the title-deciding match to clinch the title of the Sheikh Kamal International Basketball Championship.
“We are not Malaysia U-18 side. We are Malaysia U-16 side, but you guys keep writing it again and again no matter how much I say.”
Bangladesh found their first longer-version game in 14 months a tough one on the opening day of their three-day practice match against Zimbabwe XI at the Academy ground yesterday.
England's Stuart Broad became the first bowler to take a Test hat-trick at Trent Bridge as India's progress was checked spectacularly in the second Test on Saturday.
A pair sat at the stands near the clubhouse, watching the game. One of them, who wore a Zimbabwe Cricket tracksuit, was curious to know why Tamim Iqbal wasn't playing.
Mohammad Masudur Rahman bagged a silver medal while Sarot Roy earned bronze for Bangladesh in the 3rd Asian Zurkhaneh Sports and Koshti Pehlevani Championship which ended at the newly-built Wooden Floor Stadium yesterday.
Stuart Broad admitted on Friday evening that a conversation over tea had led to England's fightback against India on Day One of the second Test against India at Trent Bridge.
Former India all-rounder Salim Durrani has come out in support of under-fire Harbhajan Singh, expressing confidence that the India off-spinner would come good in the ongoing Test series against England.
World and Olympic champion Usain Bolt cruised to victory in the 200m at Friday's Diamond League meeting here while American 400m runner LaShawn Merritt returned after a 21-month doping ban, insisting he's a clean athlete.
Michael Phelps eased his World Championships heartache with a 100m butterfly win Saturday as 16-year-old Missy "Missile" Franklin exploded onto the scene with another two gold medals in Shanghai.
Argentina and Nigeria are expected to arrive with their full-strength sides for the friendly match to be held in Dhaka on September 6, said Anwarul Haque Hela, chairman of the organising committee after his return from India yesterday where he had a meeting with the Celebrity Management Group.
In a bid to attract spectators to the semifinals and final of the GP Supercup, Bangladesh Football federation joined hands with Walton Group in rewarding the spectators who would brave the scorching heat to support their favourite clubs. There will be a raffle draw for the spectators of the three matches scheduled to be held on August 2, 3 and 6 with lucrative prizes up for grabs.
Paris Saint-Germain have signed Argentine international playmaker Javier Pastore from Palermo for 43 million euros ($62 million), Italian news agency ANSA reported on Saturday.
Former German international Jurgen Klinsmann was named on Friday as coach of the United States national team, replacing the sacked Bob Bradley with qualification for the 2014 World Cup his prime mission.
He may be a blast from the past as far as the World Cup is concerned, but Ronaldinho is bagging most of the limelight in Rio, even as the city prepares to host Saturday's draw for the 2014 tournament.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has revealed Cesc Fabregas will miss this weekend's Emirates Cup because he has been "unsettled" by continued speculation about a potential move to Barcelona.
Chelsea have accepted an apology from the Football Association of Malaysia over anti-Semitic abuse that targeted Israeli midfielder Yossi Benayoun during a pre-season match.
Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard will be out of action until September after going into hospital on Saturday for treatment on an infection related to his groin injury.
For Brazil, there was really no other choice as honorary ambassador for the 2014 World Cup than Pele, the country's greatest ever player.
UEFA have reduced a ban imposed on Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho for comments made about referees in last season's Champions League following an appeal hearing on Friday.
Economists yesterday said the central bank might not achieve its monetary policy targets for the current fiscal year due to the government's bank borrowing and politicised boards of state banks.
The government has cut its food grain imports target by 22 percent for the current fiscal year due to better stock and internal procurement, a food department official said.
Thousands of investors face uncertainty due to trading suspension of Padma Oil shares that resulted from changes in dividend ratio by the state-run fuel company.
Bulk electricity tariff will rise by 6.66 percent, effective from Monday.
Italy's second largest bank, Intesa Sanpaolo, reached a deal with unions on Saturday to cut 3,000 jobs by 2013 under a plan also aimed at bolstering the lender's capital reserves, Italian media reported.
BRAC Bank has launched a special credit card for online foreign exchange payment for specific business purposes such as domain purchase, server hosting and software licence purchase for IT businesspeople.
Industries Minister Dilip Barua urged businessmen in Chittagong yesterday not to hike the prices of essentials unreasonably so that people are not pushed further into misery.
Stocks returned to the red as trading sessions advanced toward the close last week, ending a five-week gaining streak. Profit-taking pushed down market indices.
Businesspeople yesterday urged the government to extend the deadline for giving opinions on the draft of the Trade Organisation Law 2011, saying “the time is too limited to give opinions on such an important issue”.
It's the demography, stupid.
Spurred on by President Barack Obama, US lawmakers set the stage late Friday for a frantic beat-the-clock weekend effort to avert a catastrophic debt default sure to rattle the world economy.
Private equity investment in India is accelerating, as rising borrowing costs and dormant public markets in Asia's third-largest economy push companies to cut deals with buyout firms in return for much-needed cash injections.
Apple and Samsung have overtaken long-time leader Nokia for the top two spots in the global smartphone market, a report said Friday, underscoring the Finnish handset maker's ongoing struggles.
Indian farmers could get six times more cash for their land under a new land acquisition bill aimed at accelerating industrial development in Asia's third-largest economy.
The grinding political fight over US government spending and debt is preventing businesses from pushing ahead with investments and taking a toll on the economy, economists say.
Google, which purchased a leading flight software company earlier this year, has launched a new tool for finding hotels.
STOCKPILING of yarn is on the rise in warehouses, as the country's spinning sub-sector is passing through a rough patch due to a significant drop in sales of the product in local markets.
THE 70th plenary meeting of the standing committee of International Cotton Advisory Committee (ICAC) will take place in Buenos Aires, Argentina from September 4-10.
Asian stocks fell Friday on growing concern that US lawmakers will not break a deadlock on a deal to avert a default by the world's richest country.
Officials from Ford and the United Auto Workers opened a new round of contract negotiations Friday, saying they are committed to resolving their differences without a strike.
Vodafone shareholders will get $3.3 billion (2 billion pounds) from a long-awaited Verizon Wireless dividend, raising hopes for regular payouts from the U.S. company after a six-year drought.
A General Motors Co unit has invested $7.5 million and taken an undisclosed stake in Sunlogics Inc, helping the solar energy systems manufacturer to establish plants in Michigan and Canada and create 310 jobs at the small company.
Twitter said Thursday that it will begin placing advertisements known as "Promoted Tweets" in the timelines of users who follow a particular brand or company.
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates has sold five million shares in the US software giant, less than one percent of his holdings, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Google has bought more than 1,000 technology patents from IBM as the Internet giant seeks to build up its portfolio and head off potential intellectual property suits.
Building mass awareness on the right to information (RTI) act is imperative to ensure transparency and accountability at all levels, said speakers at a discussion yesterday.
India would actively consider introducing onboard immigration check in Dhaka-Kolkata train service to minimise sufferings of visitors.
Foreign Minister Dipu Moni yesterday urged India to take effective steps to put a complete stop of frequent incidents of firing by BSF on innocent and unarmed Bangladeshi nationals.
Three people, including a woman, were killed and another was injured in separate road accidents in Chittagong and Dinajpur yesterday.
Deputy Speaker Col (retd) Shawkat Ali said yesterday the government should be decentralised further as the local government bodies remain ineffective due to lack of empowerment.
Independence of judiciary is being hampered due to personal weakness of some judges, and the chief justice should play courageous role to end this, said Justice Kazi Ebadul Hoque, a former Supreme Court judge.
Some students of Rajshahi University (RU) allegedly vandalised Rajshahi Railway Station on Friday night as a train driver did not stop a Rajshahi-bound intercity train at RU Railway Station.
Prof Dwijen Sharma, an eminent botanist, was awarded “Nature Conservation Award-2011” for his outstanding contribution to the conservation of nature and natural resources in Bangladesh.
Four people were injured as an office of a firm caught in fire at Uttar Badda in the city yesterday.
A young man was stabbed to death at Pahartoli in the port city on Friday night.
Two youths identified as outsiders threw "unknown chemical" to a girl student inside her school compound in Rajshahi city yesterday, inflicting injuries on both of her eyes.
Academic activities of the newly build three public universities will start from this year to meet the demand of admission seekers for higher education.
The government will “fall” before the next national budget through people's mass movement, said Oli Ahmad, president of Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) yesterday.
A four-member delegation team of Indian Military Academy (IMA) left Bangladesh for India yesterday after a seven-day official visit.
Speakers at a view-exchange meeting stressed the need for modernisation of police administration to upgrade law and order situation of the country.
Police recovered the hanging body of a woman from her bedroom at Zoarshahara of Badda in the city on Friday night.
The elections to Chittagong University (CU) syndicate, academic council, and finance committee will be held on the campus today.
The first year honours admission tests at Jahangirnagar University (JU) for academic year 2011-12 will begin on October 8 and continue till October 17. The details of the admission will be published in newspapers soon.
The three-day professional training workshop on autism ended at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) on Friday.
Trial of war criminals is a must to fulfill the dream of countrymen, freedom fighters and martyrs, said Sector Commanders Forum Chairman Air Vice Marshal (retd) AK Khandker at a discussion here yesterday.
Shalahuddin Ahmed, a former defence secretary, passed away at Square Hospital in the city yesterday due to brain haemorrhage. He was 87, says a press release.
Sheikh Nur Mohammad, a freedom fighter, passed away at his residence at village Gopakhali Rahimpur in Kaliganj yesterday due to prolong illness. He was 71.
Advocate Bodrul Islam Chunnu, a joint convener of BNP of Rangpur district, succumbed to his injuries at Square Hospital in Dhaka yesterday.
Heavy rain and on-rush of water from hills across the border have triggered flash flood in the district.
Hundreds of women, children and students held a procession and formed human chain in the town yesterday demanding immediate trial and punishment of the culprits who murdered housewife Nadira on July 22.
A court in Natore on Wednesday sentenced a youth to life term imprisonment for killing a six-year-old girl after rape in Gurudaspur upazila in 2007.
Six Indian nationals are languishing in the district jail despite completion of their jail terms more than six years ago.
At least 30 people were injured, 20 of them by bullets, in a fierce clash between two rival factions of local Awami League at Paddabila Bazar in Nariarchar village under Terokheda upazila on Friday night.
Police released two accused in a case filed under the Speedy Trial Act hours after their arrest in Terokheda upazlia on July 27.
Indefinite strike by road transport workers in 10 districts of Khulna division was called off on Friday morning.
BCL rival groups in Govternment Sundarban College in the city clashed yesterday leaving at least five activists wounded.
Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) members arrested three fake members of Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) in Hakimpur upazila on Friday night.
Members of Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) have recovered three illegal firearms in Sadar upazila on Friday night.
A housewife was killed allegedly by her husband and in-laws for dowry at Charpora Gachha village in Ramgoti upazila Friday morning. The deceased was identified as Rina Bibi, 22, wife of Ibrahim of the village. Local people said Ibrahim and his family members used to torture Rina to bring dowry money from her father. On Friday morning, they picked up a quarrel with her over the issue and at one stage beat her mercilessly leaving her dead on the spot.
A grocer was beaten to death near Aruakandi bazaar in Rajoir upazila early Friday. Victim Shipon Biswas Monu, 40, of Aruakandi village was owner of a shop at the bazaar. Family sources said when Monu was going to shop from his house at about 5am a gang of criminals beat him mercilessly and at one stage poured poison into his mouth. Later, the victim died on way to Sadar hospital.
A college girl allegedly committed suicide at her house early Thursday. Victim Jannatul Firdaus Setu, 22, daughter of Shawkat Ali of village Ramchandrapur in Pabna Sadar upazila was a student of honours class at Edward College. Police said Setu hanged herself from the ceiling of the house after a feud with her mother. Sub-inspector of Pabna police station Mujibar Rahman said the victim had lost Tk 340 from her vanity bag and she blamed her mother for it. When her mother scolded her she committed suicide. However local sources said that the victim had affairs with a boy of her college. Her family members rebuked her for it prompting her to commit suicide.
A court here on Wednesday sentenced three people to life term imprisonment for killing a speech impaired teenage girl on Dedember 17, 2002. The court also fined the convicts Moinul Sheikh, son of Abdus Salam of village Bansherhula, Al Amin Sheikh, son of Farid Sheikh and Habib Sheikh, son of Siraj Sheikh of village Parasadnagar in Rampal upazila Tk 30,000 each, in default, to suffer four years RI more.
One contributing factor to our worsening traffic situation is that most of our schools don't have their own transport services. With a very poor public transport system, most parents including myself are compelled to use private vehicles as the only option for sending the kids to school.
Dragon fruit, a new type of fruit has now entered into city's leading shopping malls. Dragon fruit (Hylocereous undatus) is a member of Cacti or Cactaceae family native to Central America, now grown in many parts of the world including Bangladesh. The fruit is tasty and has nutritious values. It contains a good amount of vitamin C, B, minerals such as Calcium, etc. Dragon fruit is a rich source of antioxidant which prevents cancer. The fruit also helps in reducing blood cholesterol and blood sugar. Among many other qualities Dragon fruit helps in reducing body weight.
The fifth population census has been conducted after ten years in 2011. It is impossible to deny the significance of population census in the development of a country. The researchers, planners, businessmen, learners, even the politicians of home and abroad are using the data and information of the census as the tools or raw materials for their research. If there is any discrepancy in the data and information, the entire work plan will be challenged. According to the preliminary findings of the population and housing census 2011, Bangladesh's population now stands at 14.23 crore which has created debates among the experts and is not in line with the UNICEF, UNDP and other reports. Other reports showed that our population is more than 16 crore. Due to the negligence of the field workers in visiting every house, the reliability of the report is being questioned. Needless to say that the information of the census is vital in preparing ADP or other economic plans. The controversy about the population census is unexpected.
Israel's policy of treating Palestinians as sub-humans, condemning them to live in slum-like settlements and separating them from the rest of the world is criminal. Israel has not left any stone unturned in deterring the people from around the world from reaching out to the Palestinians.
Now-a-days, parents are not satisfied with the lesson rendered by the teachers at schools to their children. Regardless of the quality and reputation of the institution, almost every guardian as well as student takes coaching as a must for gaining higher grades! Some of the unscrupulous teachers use this coaching tool as a money-making tree. Sometimes they even threaten the students of giving poor marks in exams if they do not intend to go to those teachers for coaching. Why is coaching essential when students are attentively participating in the classes? Only commercial minded teachers are not to be blamed. The mindset of both students and parents is also the reason behind this nuisance. The school authorities as well as the education ministry must take proper initiatives and make regulations in prohibiting private coaching.
Rehab (Real Estate and Housing Association of Bangladesh) fair at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre, Dhaka, was well organised and attractive. But it is a fair for the affluent people. Can the middle class and poor people afford to purchase Rehab land and apartments? Why does not Rehab make arrangements and sell land and flats for the poor and middle class people with a view to mitigating their untold sufferings.
After almost about a year we came back to Houston, Texas in order to retain our residency in the United States. In order to begin living once again in our host country, we had to do a lot of shopping. While staying in Bangladesh for the last one year we experienced a great price spiral of essential commodities. The regime in power blamed the price hike on the international market. To my utter dismay, I found most of the things selling at the price that I found a year ago. Only the gasoline price has doubled, yet it is cheaper compared to Bangladesh. Apart from this, the price hike is very nominal, for example, the bread that we used to buy from Walmart for 80 cents now sells for a dollar. In general, the price hike of essential commodities here in Texas is like this.
There is no doubt that for a secular country the constitution is a scared document. As such, perhaps various oaths of office may be administered by the copy of the constitution rather than a religious scripture, as the office bearers come from various faiths.
I have noticed that the habit of smoking is increasing substantially. It is not that the adults only smoke, the young boys, especially the teenagers are also smoking significantly. Whenever I go to Gulshan I see that the young boys are smoking in groups on roadsides and in restaurants, even though 'no smoking' is written in those places, creating disturbance to the general people. It is so shocking that 10-12 year-old boys smoke freely in front of elders. So, I would suggest the parents to keep an eye on their children so that they do not smoke and keep themselves away from harmful habits. I also request the government to ban advertisements of cigarettes in public places.
There exists a bad practice in our politics, whenever any political leader or a minister or an MP visits any place, to give a show off the school kids are forced to stand on both sides of the streets, with flags and flowers. Instead of attending classes they are obliged to welcome the 'special' people, standing in sun, rain, cold and storm. It is mandatory for the school kids. It is inhumane and medieval.
If the root of a tree is cut off, the possibility of blooming flower will nip in the bud. Similarly, if our young generation goes astray, then our future will be uncertain. Youths are involving themselves in many illegal activities like addiction, eve-teasing, hijacking, stealing, etc. The reasons behind their addiction are bad company, poverty, bad parenting, availability of drugs etc. In order to save them from this path, parents as well as government should take required steps.
Mirakkel 6 is now being telecast by Zee Bangla, I watch this programme regularly because it is very entertaining and also because there are participants from Bangladesh. I am really happy noticing that Bangladeshi participants are doing very well but at the same time disappointed noticing that they are not getting due recognition.
The arrival of India's Congress party president Sonia Gandhi in Bangladesh was an auspicious sign for bilateral relationship between the two neighbouring countries. She attended a conference on autistic and disabled children as chief guest and also received “Bangladesh Freedom Honour" award from the government on behalf of her late mother-in-law Indira Gandhi. I hope that this visit will play a significant role in boosting our political and economic relation with India. But it is regretful that Indian border security force BSF has killed one Bangladeshi on the day of her arrival. Any problem can be solved through negotiation. I urge the authorities concerned to reach an agreement and implement that properly so that no such border killing occurs in future.
Here are some comments that came in response to Saturday's The Daily Star report headlined “Political decisions vs business”
At least 42 people have died in violence near Yemen's southern city of Zinjibar, most of which has fallen under the control of suspected al-Qaeda militants, military and local sources said yesterday.
The chief minister of a southern Indian state who is accused of being at the centre of a $3.6-billion mining fraud will resign on Sunday, he said yesterday.
US President Barack Obama Friday called for an "international response" to the devastating famine in the Horn of Africa after meeting with the leaders of four French-speaking African nations.
Libyan rebels say the gunmen who shot dead their military chief were members of an Islamist-linked militia that is allied to their struggle to overthrow veteran leader Muammar Gaddafi.
Weight gain can be more dangerous for South Asians than for Caucasians because the fat clings to organs like the liver instead of the skin, said a study published Thursday.
Turkey faced turmoil within its military yesterday after the country's four most senior commanders quit, offering Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan an opportunity to extend his authority over the once dominant armed forces.
The United Nations on Friday slapped sanctions on the Pakistani Taliban -- thought to be behind last year's failed bombing attempt on New York's Times Square -- for having links with al-Qaeda.
Syrian forces shot dead at least 20 civilians in attacks on pro-democracy demonstrations across the country Friday, the Syrian human rights organisation Sawasiah said.
The royal palace and the headquarters of the governing Labour Party were on self-confessed Norwegian killer Anders Behring Breivik's list of targets, the tabloid Verdens Gang (VG) reported yesterday.
Ten Shia Muslims and another man were killed yesterday when gunmen opened fire in an apparent sectarian attack in southwestern Pakistan, police said.
Marvel has won a legal battle to retain copyright of its lucrative comic book characters including Spider-Man and The Incredible Hulk.
London police probing phone hacking at Rupert Murdoch's defunct News of the World tabloid are broadening their investigation to allegations of computer hacking, they said yesterday.
Seventeen factory workers were killed and 21 seriously injured after they became trapped in a burning Vietnamese shoe workshop that did not have a fire escape, local police said yesterday.
A plane crashed and broken in two on landing at Guyana's main airport in the capital, Georgetown, yesterday causing injuries but no deaths.
Iraq is a less safe place than it was one year ago and security is continuing to deteriorate, an American watchdog warned yesterday, just months ahead of a US withdrawal from the country.
Unidentified gunmen yesterday attacked a terminal on the gas pipeline to Israel for the fifth time since February, a security official said.
Nepal's Maoist party yesterday vowed to pull out of the government if the premier fails to appoint its lawmakers as cabinet ministers, threatening fresh political turmoil in the Himalayan nation.
Morocco's King Mohammed VI said yesterday he was in favour of reopening the country's border with Algeria, closed since 1994 amid tensions between the north African neighbours.
Two Indian soldiers were killed yesterday in a fierce clash with rebels along the de facto border that splits Kashmir between India and Pakistan, the army said.
Arts & Entertainment
Fans adorably refer to them as “ABC” -- Artcell, Black and Cryptic Fate. They may have different musical approaches or prefer dissimilar lyrical patterns but they have one thing in common -- a large group of young, energetic and loyal fans.
“Never imagined this is how we'd lose Abid. Death is inevitable, but it wasn't his time to go. He was a genuinely nice guy. He had this inherent ability to get close to people,” said former “Closeup 1” champion Nolok Babu.
Monsoon in Bengal is anything but subtle: the gloomy sky often weeps away reminding us of the unforgettable moments of life, at times the rhythm of raindrops rejuvenates the passion, heavy shower amplifies that passion, nature wakes up and flowers blossom. These images and impressions of monsoon dominated this month's instalment of 'Praner Khela', a regular musical programme arranged by Bengal Foundation. The soiree was held on July 28 at the Bengal Gallery of Fine Arts, Dhanmondi in Dhaka.
Directed and compiled by the Founder Chairperson of Scholastica, Yasmeen Murshed and Wajed Al Rahman, Scholastica Alumni Association's production titled “Who's Afraid of William Shakespeare?” opened with the three witches of “Macbeth” resurrecting the Bard of Avon. The bard, awoken from his eternal slumber, found himself confronted by a couple of teenage students whining about his “endless iambic pentameter” that these students have to “stomach” to get through their exams. The hour-long production was characterised by fascinatingly dramatic, startling and above all, hilarious elements.
The evening descends. The rays of a tired sun play havoc with the cheeks of the woman you love to distraction. And you hum the old Mohammad Rafi song, “Hui shaam un ka khayal aa gaya / wohi zindagi ka sawaal aa gaya”. And there you have it. In the 31 years since July 1980, life without Rafi has been a time of declining, indeed increasingly mediocre music. He was a maestro, in that true sense of the meaning. Think of “Radhike tu ne bansri churai”; or dwell on “Hue hum jin ke liye barbaad”. There was that command in him of the various elements of music. Was that voice a gift from God? Never mind the answer. But what we do know is that Mohammad Rafi was an artiste whose presence in Indian music overshadowed every other presence in his time.
A three-day programme marking the 87th birth anniversary of one of Bangladesh's pioneering painters, SM Sultan began at Sultan Moncho, Narail on July 29. Jointly organised by the SM Sultan Shishu Charu-O-Karukala Foundation, Bengal Foundation and Sultan Foundation, with Banglalink as the sponsor, the celebration will conclude today.
An electrifying drama is being played out now at the UN Headquarters in New York. On one end is a state called Palestine. On the other end is a Zionist entity which has the trappings of a state called Israel. The entity is nervous.
In this regard, let me turn the clock back to the period of September-October 1977. I was then living in England. I had taken a sabbatical from my work as a journalist and took up a place up at Cambridge University to pursue graduate work in economics. In the autumn of 1977 Amnesty International approached me for my views on a developing crisis in Bangladesh. At the time Amnesty was receiving a flood of confidential reports describing mass executions that were taking place in Bangladesh following an apparent revolt in the armed forces.
Constitution as the Supreme State Policy
National constitutions contain the broad principles of the supreme policy of a state. Other policies, contained in documents other than in constitutions, are policies of governments. The latter policies constantly change, unlike the former. Therefore, disadvantaged sections of citizens, seek to protect their rights by having express safeguard provisions included in their national constitutions. This is no exception in Bangladesh.
The growing availability of English medium education in Bangladesh attests to the increasing demand for the global language, both domestically and internationally. Even traditional, national-curriculum following Bangla medium schools, such as Viqarunnisa Noon School or St. Josephs have established “English medium” sections. These sections teach the basic national curriculum as translated in English, and usually have only one Bangla class, for at most 45 minutes per day. In the O'level exams in English medium schools, the Bangla section is easily passable, as discussed by several alums of such schools for this article. “Since Bangla is taught as a second language, the section is fairly easy, and almost everyone will score an A,” explained a graduate from Sunbeams. This trend, along with the rise in British-curriculum English medium schools in the country, attests to the language's continued prestige in the region.
Typically we in Bangladesh are used to seeing our people migrate to other countries in search of work, a better living, or simply to escape harsh economic conditions. We are used to emigration from our country, and not immigration. That perception was changed abruptly when we faced a large-scale influx of people in our eastern border, from the state of Arakan -- a large swath of land in Burma, now Myanmar, in April 1978.
Dateline Dhaka, 1 July 2011. The leading Bengali daily Prothom Alo reports: 'Indian film enters the country [Bangladesh]' (Entertainment Reporter 2011: 20). The report elaborates that three Indian-Bengali films were released from the airport upon a court order and are now awaiting the clearance of Bangladesh film censor board for being shown in local theatres. Within two weeks, it reports again with a heading: 'the Film Fraternity fights back the Indian films [in Bangladesh]' (Kamruzzaman 2011: 20). It outlines how the five different associations of film professionals working at Dhaka Film Industry promise to oppose 'the exhibition of Indian films till the last' and urged the government to intervene. On the other hand, the film exhibitors' association wishes to bring more Indian films as '[local] film production is dwindling, the audiences are not watching these films like before and the producers are also losing money'. (Kamruzzaman 2011: 20).
Aurangzeb is proclaimed Moghul emperor of India.