The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Tuesday, September 2, 2014


News of: Tuesday, 18th of October, 2011

Front Page

Dhaka set to split into two

The city of Dhaka is going to be cut into two.

DCC in limbo

In power for what could be called a bonus of a second term without having faced any election, the mayor and councillors of Dhaka City Corporation appear to have fallen into a state of complacency. That is clear enough from the inertia they have remained trapped in, a condition which has deprived the residents of the city of many of the most essential of services.

Govt moves to boost stocks

The government yesterday took a set of decisions including withdrawal of 10 percent tax on mutual funds to lift the troubled stockmarket.

Transit underway

The first regularised transit of Indian goods to Agartala through Akhaura Land Port seems set to take place today while trial transit runs and its impact assessment have not been completed yet.

Better service lies in reforms

Splitting the Dhaka City Corporation (DCC) area alone will not ensure better civic facilities for the residents unless it is made stronger through legal reforms, observed some local government experts and politicians.

Onus on scamsters

Awami League leader Suranjit Sengupta yesterday criticised the government for assigning the task of reviving the stock market to the “ones earlier found guilty of share market scam”.

Cell operators given a shock

Telecoms regulator yesterday sent letters to four mobile operators in the country asking them to pay spectrum charges and renewal fees and have their licences renewed for the next 15 years.

It's most transparent

Communications Minister Syed Abul Hossain yesterday claimed the Padma Bridge is the most transparent project the World Bank ever financed in Bangladesh.

Huge mangrove forests at stake

Thousands of acres of mangrove forests, created to shield lakhs from natural disasters in the chars (islands) in Bhola and Patuakhali, face serious threats with the district administrations leasing out the chars to landless people and shrimp cultivators.

Mob did not kill them

The incident of killing six students and injuring another youth in the early hours of July 18, on the night of holy Shab-e-Barat, in Keblarchar of Aminbazar took place before villagers had reached the spot.

Voters trained on use of EVM

The Election Commission (EC) yesterday incepted an orientation programme on using electronic voting machines (EVM) for the voters of Narayanganj City Corporation polls.

HC questions sponsored TV news, headlines

The High Court yesterday questioned the legality of sponsored news and headlines on television.

Ship-breaking yard in Ctg fined, sued

A day after the death of four workers from toxic gas at the Jiri Subedar Steel Re-rolling Mills of Sitakunda, the Department of Environment (DoE) yesterday fined it Tk 25 lakh for not having proper safety measures in its ship-breaking yard.

Road march to see 250 arches

Despite the BNP high command's decision not to hold any rally in Rajshahi city during the party's Dhaka-Chapainawabganj road march, local leaders spent several lakh taka on arches, billboards and banners to greet party Chairperson Khaleda Zia.

Low birth weight 'linked to autism'

Babies born weighing less than 4lb (1.8kg) could be more prone to developing autism than children born at normal weight, a study suggests.

Canadian takes 11 years to walk around the world

A 56-year-old Canadian man who left home after his business went bankrupt completed an 11-year walk around the world on Sunday, and told a crowd of well-wishers his new goal was to promote peace.

BNP's 2nd road march starts today

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia will lead a road march towards Chapainawabganj from the capital today, aiming to drum up public support for reinstating the caretaker government system.

Gas blast kills 8 miners in China

A gas explosion ripped through a coal mine in southwest China yesterday killing eight people and leaving five missing, state media reported, the latest accident to hit the country's mining industry.

Editorial

Fast unto death by investors

Very seldom do we come across a situation where small stock market investors have to resort to fast and that too unto death to save their investments from what they think a market that has become the victim of severe manipulation. They had been compelled by the slide in the market as well as the government's inability to halt the downtrend. And added to that, nothing tangible has been done by the government to address the liquidity crisis in spite of the repeated assurance made to the investors. Just for the record, there has been a fall of nearly 1700 points since the new chairman took over.

Chemical factory in residential area

The incident of toxic gas leakage from a pipe at a chemical factory in the city has proved extremely harmful. This has rendered sick no less than 100 people including factory workers, rescue workers and residents of the area. It is a stark reminder of how vulnerable the urban dwellers are to the risks posed by hazardous chemical factories located in close proximity to or at the heart of residential areas.

Sports

Seeking a turnaround

The Tigers' shift to Chittagong is sure to bring back memories of the turnaround during the World Cup. And if that thought passes them by, a glance from the bus window would surely help them remember what happened here seven months ago.

Sammy eyes sweep for points

The equation was quite simple just four days ago. Bangladesh had to do a clean-sweep of the West Indies in the one-day series to jump ahead in the ICC ODI rankings. Two losses later, the tables have turned and it is Darren Sammy who is pining for a drubbing for similar reasons.

NCL off to uneventful start

The 13th National Cricket League got underway yesterday at four different venues across the country without any displays of individual brilliance.

Stalemate over 2nd-tier over

The stalemate surrounding the second-tier of the Bangladesh League is finally over as Wari Club and Victoria SC yesterday verbally assured the committee to take part in the inaugural edition after they themselves received assurance of receiving councillorship of Bangladesh Football Federation.

Windies Test specialists join squad

West Indies's batting line-up has been bolstered by the addition of Shivnarine Chanderpaul who arrived here on Sunday night with five other cricketers for the two-match Test series.

Emon in solo lead

FIDE Master Syed Mahfuzur Rahman Emon assumed solo lead in the 14th Prime Bank Rating Chess with 6.5 points after the seventh round at the Bangladesh Chess Federation yesterday. FIDE Master Minhazuddin Ahmed Sagar, Shafiq Ahmed, Golam Mostafa Bhuiyan and Serajul Kabir were in joint second position with 6 points each.

India take 2-0 lead

World champions India rattled England once again with bat and ball to win the second one-dayer by eight wickets on Monday and take a 2-0 lead in the five-match series.

Duel in the desert

Sri Lanka skipper Tillakaratne Dilshan wants his bowlers to help the prolific left-armer Rangana Herath tame Pakistan in the first Test starting here on Tuesday.

Cummins gets Test nod

Teenage quick Patrick Cummins could become Australia's youngest Test player in nearly 60 years after being called up Monday for their two-Test series in South Africa.

Wheldon killed in IndyCar crash

English racing driver Dan Wheldon was killed in a massive crash at the Las Vegas 300 IndyCar series finale on Sunday.

Foreign marketing agency for football

Bangladesh Football Federation is thinking of appointing an England-based marketing agency in a bid to acquire more sponsors and make the game more sellable in the country.

Dhaka beat Joypurhat

Dhaka moved to the verge of semifinal with a 4-1 victory over Joypurhat in the lone match of the Super League stage of Southeast Bank 22nd National Youth Hockey Competition at the Maulana Bhasani Hockey Stadium yesterday.

Mancunians eye kickstart

Dominance has been the domestic watchword of both defending champions Manchester United and current leaders Manchester City in the English Premier League so far this season.

Klose breaks Roma

Miroslav Klose scored 20 seconds from the end of injury time to hand Lazio derby honours in a 2-1 victory over Roma on a dreadful day of Serie A football on Sunday that saw five out of seven matches finish goalless.

Mama's boy

Diego Maradona dedicated victory to the mothers of Argentina after his team Al Wasl made a winning start to their league season with a 3-0 win over Sharjah on Sunday.

Levante join Barca

Unfancied Levante defeated 10-man Malaga 3-0 on Sunday to sit level with Spanish and European champions Barcelona at the top of La Liga and nip ahead of Real Madrid.

Fink given hope

Struggling Hamburg gave new manager-in-waiting Thorsten Fink a timely boost by claiming a welcome 2-1 away win at Freiburg on Sunday.

Pele visits Japan

Brazilian football legend Pele visited a Japanese elementary school in a tsunami-hit region Monday to offer encouragement to people trying to rebuild their lives after the disaster.

Business

Govt steps not enough to prop up stocks: analysts

Analysts, merchant bankers and investors believe steps taken to revamp the stockmarket would not work unless institutions ensure their participation.

Muhith stresses local investment in PPP

Finance Minister AMA Muhith yesterday asked businesspeople to prioritise local investments in public-private partnership (PPP) projects along with foreign direct investments to achieve the economic growth.

Govt okays $1.05b loans for Biman, BPC

The government has approved $1.05 billion in commercial loans to import fuel for Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation and procure two new aircraft for Biman Bangladesh Airlines.

Export-import halted thru' Benapole port

Export-import activities between Bangladesh and India through Benapole land port remained suspended yesterday in protest of continuous harassment allegedly by the Indian customs authorities.

Call to preserve the history of port city

The glorious history of culture, heritage, political movement and economic development that Chittagong is losing everyday should be preserved and the country should inform the world about the wealth in a loud and clear way.

Cleaner production to help save $70m in textile sector: IFC

The country's 1,700 textile wet-processing units will be able to save up to $70 million and 10.5 billion litres of water a year if they adopt cleaner production measures.

EU to mull three-pronged plan for banks

European Union finance ministers will consider a three-pronged plan to restore investor confidence in the bloc's banks as part of wider efforts to stabilise euro zone finances, EU sources familiar with the situation said.

Nitol Motors to train 50,000 drivers

Nitol Motors Ltd plans to train about 50,000 drivers in five years, said Abdul Matlub Ahmad, chairman of Nitol-Niloy Group.

Truckers call off strike in Akhaura land port

Truck-drivers, who went on a strike to protest an assault on one of their collogues allegedly by a border security guard at Akhaura land port in Brahmanbaria, withdrew the shutdown in the afternoon yesterday.

Strike-hit Maruti resumes 'limited' operations

Strike-hit Maruti Suzuki, India's biggest carmaker, resumed "limited" operations Monday and said it would start talks to settle a labour row that has cost the company hundreds of millions of dollars.

German business aims to bring more women to top jobs

The 30 major German companies trading on the German blue-chip DAX unveiled a plan Monday to bring more women into management, but stopped short of making quotas compulsory.

BlackBerry offers free apps after outage

BlackBerry maker Research in Motion offered customers free apps on Monday after millions of users worldwide suffered service outages last week.

The rise of Thanapara

They want to work, they don't want aid.” Safia Minney, founder of UK's biggest fashion company People Tree, was quoted as saying as she was upholding the dignity of the handloom and garment workers of Thanapara Swallows Development Society (TSDS) at Charghat of Rajshahi.

TSDS: then and now

The success of Thanapara Swallows Development Society (TSDS) was never easy, and it is becoming even more of a struggle to expand now, says TSDS Executive Director Raihan Ali in an interview with The Daily Star.

Metropolitan

Massive irregularities found in Jessore board

A probe committee of the education ministry has revealed massive irregularities in the re-examination of answer sheets of this year's higher secondary certificate examinations under Jessore education board.

It's as if they take country's lease for five years

Public representatives think they take lease of the country for five years to do whatever they want, said ruling Awami League lawmaker AKM Mozammel Huq yesterday.

Project to reduce dependence on groundwater

To meet the demand for drinking water in Dhaka city, the government has taken an initiative to set up a well field at Singair upazila in Manikganj.

Fake currency identifiers before Eid

In the face of wide sprayed existence of fake currencies across the country, the police high-ups decided to introduce fake currency identifiers to check the fraudulent acts through making and marketing fake currencies, said sources.

Malnutrition reduction progress at halt

Bangladesh's progress in reducing prevalence of underweight children has become static since 2000, a nutrition expert said yesterday.

Bangladesh Papers Mills fined Tk 30 Lakh

The Department of Environment (DoE) fined and realised Tk 30 lakh from Bangladesh Papers Mills at Simrail of Siddhirganj in Narayanganj after stopping its production yesterday for polluting the Shitalakhya river for the last 44 years.

Proposal gets cabinet nod

The government yesterday approved a proposal for obtaining membership in the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) and the drafts of the Bangabandhu Poverty Alleviation and Rural Development Academy Act, 2011, the Competition Act, 2011 and the Forest (Amendment) Act, 2011.

Autopsy says suicide

Autopsy revealed that Pronob Dasgupta Bablu, a Bangladesh Chhatra League activist of Dhaka University unit, committed suicide, said Dhaka Medical College morgue sources yesterday.

Four killed in road accidentsv

Four people were killed and five others injured in separate road accidents in Bogra, Gaibandha and Natore on Sunday and yesterday.

Sylhet dist, city AL bodies soon

New committees of the Sylhet district and city units of Awami League will be announced soon after six years of delay caused by disagreement among top leaders of the units.

Seven realtors served notice

The Chittagong Development Authority (CDA) issued a show cause notice to seven real estate companies on Sunday for participating in a fair and advertising without having the authority's permission for selling plots and apartments.

Legality of coaching centres challenged

The High Court yesterday questioned the legality of running coaching centres alongside classrooms by the teachers of schools and colleges that enjoy the government's monthly payment order (MPO) facilities.

HC rule on govt

The High Court yesterday issued a rule upon the government why it should not be directed to take measures to bring back around 500 Bangladeshis, who have been languishing in a Saudi jail, to the country.

Sheikh Russel's 47th anniversary of birth today

Today is the 47th birth anniversary of Sheikh Russel, youngest son of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, says a press release.

Mugger beaten

An agitating mob caught and beat a mugger while he was fleeing with Tk 1 lakh from a hotel staff at Dainik Bangla intersection in the city's Paltan yesterday.

5 get bail in share market scam cases

A Dhaka court yesterday granted bail to five investors in two cases filed against them for their alleged involvement in share market scam.

Termination of 32 Grameen Bank staff challenged

Thirty-two employees challenged the legality of their termination from the Grameen Bank.

Narayanganj freed of load shedding until Oct 30

Dhaka Power Distribution Company (DPDC) was yesterday directed to halt load shedding in the Narayanganj city area until the city corporation election on October 30.

Global Heavy Chemicals fined Tk 5 lakh

The Department of Environment (DoE) penalised Global Heavy Chemicals Ltd (GHCL) with a hefty fine of Tk 5 lakh for emitting toxic gases which caused 100 people to fall sick in Keraniganj on Sunday.

Pedestrian dies in wall collapse

A pedestrian died after a portion of a wall of an under-construction building collapsed on him at Alubazar in the city's Bangshal last night.

MP "tries to misappropriate school funds"

A local Awami League lawmaker has used his influence to form an ad-hoc managing committee for Kumira Residential High School in Sitakunda to misappropriate Tk 60 lakh of the school funds, the "existing" committee chief alleged at a press conference yesterday.

Appeal made to discharge Duke

The counsel of Lt Commander (retd) Saiful Islam Duke, nephew of BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia, yesterday appealed to a Dhaka court to discharge his client from the charges of 21 August grenade attack cases.

Husband indicted

Detectives yesterday pressed charges against Sikder Shafiqur Rahman and two others on charges of killing his wife Syeda Qamrun Nahar Nadia, a private university student, in April this year.

Clean-up campaign begins at RU

Teachers and students of Department of Chemistry of Rajshahi University (RU) began a five-day voluntary clean up campaign on the campus yesterday.

Hearing on probe against Alim today

The International Crimes Tribunal will today hear a petition for permission to question former BNP lawmaker Abdul Alim, accused of war crimes, at a Dhanmondi safe home.

ATI Ceramics fined over CM licence offence

A mobile court yesterday fined Tk 80,000 to ATI Ceramics Ltd for running its business without obtaining a Certification of Marks (CM) licence from Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution (BSTI), said a press release.

Two bus staff crushed under train wheels

Two bus staff were crushed to death under a train at Kalihati in Tangail yesterday.

JU students lock hall canteen

Resident female students of Nawab Faizunnesa Hall of Jahangirnagar University (JU) locked the hall canteen around 8:30am yesterday protesting the substandard food offered there that was causing health problems to the students.

Deal to set up double rail lines signed

Bangladesh railway will construct double rail lines from Laksam to Chinki Astana on the Dhaka-Chittagong railway under its Dhaka-Chittagong railway development project.

Government ensuring good governance: Dipu Moni

The government took various steps to ensure human rights, good governance and strengthen state institutions, including Election Commission, and is committed to uphold democratic values through ensuring free and fair elections said Foreign Minister Dipu Moni.

RMG workers agitate for salary

Several hundred workers of a garment factory took to the street and halted vehicular movement on DIT Road in the city yesterday for over one hour demanding their arrear salaries and overtime allowance.

3 Shibir men arrested

Police arrested three Islami Chhatra Shibir activists from Katakhali area near Rajshahi University (RU) yesterday in connection with February 9 campus violence.

Two shops gutted in fire

A fire originated from an electric short-circuit damaged two shops in Steel Mill Bazar area under Patenga Police Station in the port city early yesterday.

Colourful painting exhibition at RU

Teachers, students and visitors enjoyed a day-long painting exhibition at Rajshahi University (RU) yesterday.

Death anniversary

Today is the fourth death anniversary of Sayeda Dilruba Shiparin Joyonti, wife of Mohammad Khairul Islam, assistant personal secretary-1 of the prime minister, says a press release.

Rahmatullah Sarker

Today is the 29th death anni-versary of Rahmatullah Sarker, a former member of the then East Pakistan Provincial Assembly and one of the organisers of the War of Liberation, says a press release.

Sraddha

Sraddha of Tushar Kanti Ganguly, a former superintendent engineer of Water Development Board, will be held at his ancestral home at Talpukurpar in Comilla today.

National

Sand looted from river by 'ruling party' men on sale

A group of people allegedly belonging to the ruling party illegally lifted huge sand from Rooppur Bishwaspara point of the Padma River with dredgers last month.

Stop onslaught of erosion, demand Lohalia victims

Erosion-hit people formed a human chain yesterday on the bank of the Lohalia river in Patuakhali Sadar upazila demanding steps to save their houses and lands.

Charges pressed against four

Police yesterday pressed charges against four people in the Santal woman Moriam Murmu murder case.

Jubo League leader killed allegedly by party rivals

A Jubo League leader was hacked to death allegedly by his rivals in the party in Kamarpara area of Rangpur town on Sunday night.

Pirates abduct 20 crab catchers

Pirates abducted 20 crab catchers from the Latabari and Ilshemari canals in the Sundarbans on Saturday.

All 18 Sramik Dal, JCD men acquitted

A court here on Sunday acquitted all the 18 leaders and activists of Chhatra Dal and Sramik Dal of charges of vandalism in a case filed with Khulna Sadar police station in June.

Accused kills plaintiff hours after bail

The accused in a case killed the plaintiff at Bhagiratpur village under Narsingdi Sadar upazila hours after their release on bail from jail on Sunday.

Housewife murdered

A housewife was beaten to death allegedly by her husband over a family feud at Kaliganj village under Ullapara upazila of the district on Sunday night.

Sust students block road

The students of Shahjalal University of Science and Technology (Sust) yesterday blocked Sylhet- Sunamgonj highway protesting alleged assault on two students of the university by patrol police in front of Madina Market in the city early yesterday.They put up barricades on the road, disrupting traffic for two hours from 11:00am.The students alleged that three policemen beat up Kazi Maruf, 22, and Faysal Ahmed Sabbir, 22, students of petroleum and geo- resource Engineering (PGE) department, while they were taking tea at a makeshift tea shop in front of Madina Market at around 3:00am. They removed the barricades at around 1:00pm after Additional Deputy Commissioner of Sylhet Metropolitan Police MA Jalil assured them of taking actions against the cops involved.

6 arms peddlers held

Rab personnel arrested six arms peddlers in Ishwardi upazila of the district early yesterday and recovered two firearms and bullets from their possession.The arrestees are Mahmudur Rahman, 30, Sardar Suman, 25, Maruf Reza, 26, Mithun Sarkar, 29, Mithu Ali, 26, and Osman Goni, 29. They hail from different villages of the upazila. Acting on a tip-off, Rab personnel raided Taltola in Sara Gopalpur village at around 4:00am and arrested.The elite forces also seized a revolver, a shutter gun, four bullets and two motorbikes from their possessions. They were later handed over to Ishwardi police.

Prisoner dies at hospital

A prisoner died at Thakurgaon Sadar Hospital yesterday morning. The deceased was identified as Anwar Hossain, 40, son of late Lalu Sheikh of Garh Bhabanipur village under Haripur upazila of the district.Thakurgaon District Jail sources said Anwar fell sick at around 12:30am and was admitted to Thakurgaon Sadar Hospital where he died at 4:00am. He was an accused in a murder case and arrested about six months ago. After post-mortem examination, the body will be handed over to the family, sources added.

Boy drowns in pond

A six-year-old boy drowned in a pond at Singia village under Atwary upazila of Panchagarh district on Sunday.The boy was identified as Sakib, son of Dabirul Islam of the village. Locals said Sakib was playing beside a pond near their house at around 2:00pm. Suddenly, he slipped into the pond and drowned.Family members rescued Sakib and took him to Atwary Health Complex where the doctors declared him dead.

Housewife burnt to death

A housewife succumbed to burn injuries after fighting for life for four hours at Khulna Medical College Hospital yesterday afternoon. The deceased was identified as Hira Begum, 25, a mother of two children, wife of Bokhtiar and daughter of Siraj of Shiromoni area in the town. Police and locals said, Hira was married to Bakhtiar, a Malaysian expatriate and son of Atahar Mollah at Digholia of the town. Asia, mother of Bakhtiar used to torture Hira since her marriage over trifling issues. On Monday, at one stage of an altercation, Asia allegedly poured kerosene on Hira and set her on fire at about 11:30 am. Locals rushed in and took Hira to Khulna Medical College Hospital where she succumbed to her injuries at about 3:30 pm.

Man gets life for wife killing

A court here Sunday convicted a man and sentenced him to life imprisonment for killing his wife in 2008. The court also fined the convict Mohadid Piru, 45, Tk 1000, in default, to suffer one year more RI. According to the prosecution, Piru of Mirpur village in Fulbari upazila beat up his wife Afroza Begum following a family feud, leaving her critically injured on January 12, 2008. She succumbed to her injuries in a hospital the following day.

Clinics fined in Faridpur

A mobile court here yesterday fined three clinics Tk 90,000 in Boalmari. Boalmari executive magistrate Nasrin Jahan said, the mobile court fined Chittagong Unani Ayurbedi Tk 10,000, The Diagnostic Center and Clinic Tk 30,000 and Khan Sheba Surgical Clinic Tk 50,000 for not keeping valid documents and carrying out unauthorised activities. Besides, the mobile court also sealed off Sheba Surgical Clinic for not having proper documents.

International

Libya's NTC forces claim Bani Walid advance

Forces loyal to Libya's interim authorities say they have entered Bani Walid, one of the last towns still loyal to Gaddafi.

Indo-Bangla land deal in favour of Assam

Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi yesterday assured the state assembly that the recently-signed land boundary agreement with Bangladesh was beneficial for the people residing in border areas.

Hollande wins French left's presidential primary

French Socialist lawmaker Francois Hollande was crowned favourite for next year's presidential election on Sunday, winning the left's primary to choose a challenger for Nicolas Sarkozy.

Trees 'boost African crop yields, food security'

Planting trees that improve soil quality can help boost crop yields for African farmers, an assessment shows.

Kenyan troops push into rebel-held Somalia

Kenyan forces thrust deep into southern Somalia for the first time in years yesterday to hunt Al Qaeda-inspired fighters blamed for a spate of kidnappings, raising fears of a regional escalation.

5 Syria troops killed fighting 'defectors'

Syrian soldiers fought gunmen suspected to be army defectors in the flashpoint central province of Homs yesterday in clashes that left five troops dead, a human rights group said, while a crackdown focused on the provincial capital left two civilians dead.

9 Pak troops killed in Peshawar

Militants ambushed Pakistani troops yesterday, killing nine soldiers in gunbattles that lasted several hours on the outskirts of Peshawar in the northwestern tribal badlands, officials said.

Thai govt okays minimum wage hike

Thailand yesterday gave the go ahead to a hefty minimum wage hike, but delayed the measure in response to pleas from an industrial sector hammered by massive flooding.

By-election verdict is a warning for Congress: Team Anna

Reacting to defeat of Congress candidates in by-election in Hisar Lok Sabha seat in Haryana and Khadakwasla Assembly seat in Maharashtra, Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal said that it is verdict of the people and a warning for the Congress.

Pope calls for more investment in farming

Pope Benedict XVI yesterday called for increased investment in the farming sector to help stabilise production and global food prices in a message to the UN food agency to mark World Food Day.

Jordan king names int'l judge as PM

King Abdullah II yesterday named International Court of Justice judge Awn Khasawneh as prime minister, replacing Maaruf Bakhit, whose government has been accused of failing to meet growing demands for reforms, a government official said.

Arts & Entertainment

Musical Expressions

Indira Gandhi Cultural Centre, High Commission of India, Dhaka hosted a solo performance of Hindustani classical vocal music at the National Theatre Hall of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy on October 15. The featured artiste was Pandit Sarathi Chatterjee from India.

"We are going through a transition"

Kazi Toufikul Islam Emon, one of the better-known members of the troupe Prachyanat, said that the current theatre scene is not that promising. He is of the view that Bangladeshi theatre is going through a transition. “Many say theatre is in its heyday now. I don't agree. Actually we are going through a transition. People talk about the number of productions of a certain standard in recent times. But if you compare this with the situation couple of years back, you'd realise that it's been a gradual demotion,” said Emon, one of the 11 activists who formed Prachyanat in 1997.

Chhayanaut to hold two-day classical dance festival

Cultural organisation Chhayanaut will hold a two-day classical dance festival at its premises, on October 20-21. The aim of the festival is to promote and popularise classical dance forms.

Awards for literary talents

Organisers of HSBC-Kali O Kalam Young Poets and Literature Awards '11 have called for submissions of entries for 2011. Awards will be given for books [in four categories] published from July, 2010 to June, 2011. Monthly literary magazine Kali O Kalam and HSBC initiated the award in 2008, says a press release.

Dame Elizabeth Taylor remembered at private memorial

Sirs Michael Caine and Elton John were among those who attended a memorial service for Dame Elizabeth Taylor on Sunday, according to US media reports.

A TV play against sexual harassment

Bogra- based cultural organisation Amra Kojon Shilpi Goshthi has produced a TV play, titled “Choley Jawa Maney Prosthan Noy”. The play depicts the consequences and ill effects of sexual harassment. A large chunk of the shooting was done in Bogra, while some sequences will be shot in Dhaka.

Van Gogh did not kill himself, authors claim

Vincent van Gogh did not kill himself, the authors of new biography Van Gogh: The Life have claimed.

A game of snakes

A two-day long traditional 'Jhapan Khela' (playing with venomous snakes) ended at Monohorpur village in Jibonnagar upazila, under Chuadanga district last Friday.

OP-ED

7 billionth child

At some point this month, October 2011, a child will be born and the world's population will have reached seven billion. There is a good chance that this childbirth will take place in the Asia-Pacific region; home to 61% of the world's population.

Media needs some immediate attention

I can't quite determine which part of the story made me laugh, and which brought on tears, when I learnt that some zealous functionaries had passed around envelopes with Rs.500 notes to journalists in Satna who had been summoned to report on L.K. Advani's anti-corruption campaign. It was not Mr. Advani's fault; he was victim of a prevailing system. However, as pitfalls go this was a bit of a crater dip.

'Guns don't kill people. People kill people' … Since when?

This is the famous slogan of the very influential firearms lobbyists, the National Rifle Association (NRA) in the United States. This organisation strongly advocates the rights of gun ownership to be a personal and moral right, denying any links between the lax laws relating to gun ownership and high gun-related violence in the US.

Providing shelter for the street people in Dhaka

Train horns blast in the darkness. It is 10 at night. Moina, 40, is waiting to make her bed. She points to the bare concrete beneath the wide, white arches of Kamalapur Railway Station. There are no walls, no doors. "This is where I sleep," she said.

No more poor people

Poverty is the state that refers to being unable to afford basic human needs, which commonly include nutrition, health care, education, clothing and shelter. About 30% of the total world's population is estimated to be living in absolute poverty today.

Science & Life

New mystery on Mars

One of the supposedly best understood and least interesting landscapes on Mars is hiding something that could rewrite the planet's history. Or not. In fact, about all that is certain is that decades of assumptions regarding the wide, flat Hesperia Planum are not holding up very well under renewed scrutiny with higher-resolution, more recent spacecraft data.

Robot tractors in agriculture?

A ritual older than civilization itselfthe farmer rising at dawn to till the fields all daycould become a thing of the past, if a group of Dutch researchers and engineers has its way.

Call for world nuclear forum

A "nuclear Davos", convening the nations and industries that are involved in nuclear power, could be the way to deal with problems arising from the worldwide growth in nuclear-derived energy, according to the UK's science academy.

Blood-red bats take to the skies

We couldn't wait until Halloween to share this spooky thermal image of bats in flight. Provided by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, this image was taken by Boston University researchers trying to better understand how bats navigate the air in response to weather, bug activity and climate change .

New Sun-bound probe

A NASA spacecraft set to launch in 2015 will come eight times closer to the Sun than any previous probe, operating within the star's scorching outer atmosphere, or corona. The $750 million Solar Probe will study the birthplace of the solar wind. During its expected seven-year lifetime, Solar Probe will make seven gravity slingshots around Venus, each time getting closer to the Sun. At its closest approach, it will orbit the Sun from within the outer part of the corona, at a distance of between 8 and 10 solar radii from the centre of the Sun. That is much closer than the previous record holder, the Helios spacecraft, which came within 67 solar radii of the star in the 1970s.Scientists hope the probe will help solve two enduring solar mysteries: Why is the Sun's outer atmosphere, or corona, so much hotter than its visible surface, which lies beneath it? And what accelerates the solar wind, a stream of charged particles from the Sun, to supersonic speeds? Heat shield: The idea of studying the Sun at close range was first proposed by the US National Academy of Science in 1958. But scientists have only recently been able to design heat shields for such a spacecraft within NASA's tight budgetary guidelines. The mini-bus sized Solar Probe will be protected from the Sun's fierce radiation by a disc-shaped, carbon-composite heat shield that will be 2.

Secret of stripes

Many living things have stripes, but the developmental processes that create these and other patterns are complex and difficult to untangle.

Who built very first motor car?

Jesuit priest Ferdinand Verbiest, who worked in China from 1659 until his death in 1688, left a description of a five-wheel steam car he had built as a toy for the young Chinese emperor Enkh Amgalan Khaan in 1672. That is the earliest record of an auto-mobile car thus Verbiest's vehicle possibly holds the very first land speed record. The vehicle was not meant for human transport and was only 2 ft (65cm) long. There is, however, no other record of the vehicle and it is not known if it was actually built. The graphic here is from an 18th century print.


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