The Daily Star

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Wednesday, July 23, 2014


News of: Saturday, 5th of November, 2011

Front Page

DB takes over investigation

Awami League leaders and lawmakers in Narsingdi yesterday asked Posts and Telecommunications Minister Rajiuddin Ahmed Raju to clarify what would be his role in bringing the killers of mayor Lokman Hossain to justice.

Holidaymakers suffer

Delays continue to dampen the holiday spirit of thousands of people heading outside the capital to spend Eid with their loved ones.

Political killings on the rise

Incidents of political killing have taken an alarming rise in the country with death of over 100 leaders and activists of different parties in the last 10 months.

Another Padma char under consideration

Another Padma char has been picked for the proposed Bangabandhu international airport, as the previous location, Char Janajat, has been found vulnerable to erosion.

Hajj today

Around 2.5 million Muslims began yesterday the rituals of the hajj pilgrimage, the world's largest annual assembly, leaving Saudi authorities with a daunting security and safety challenge.

Narsingdi SP, 2 additional SPs withdrawn

The police headquarters last night withdrew the SP and both the additional SPs of Narsingdi, in the aftermath of the killing of municipality mayor Lokman Hossain.

Cattle price high in city markets

With only one day remaining for Eid-ul-Azha, sales of sacrificial animals at the city's 15 cattle markets, including permanent cattle market in Gabtoli, are yet to get momentum due to lack of buyers.

Outlaw killed in 'shootout' with Rab

A leader of an outlawed organisation was killed in a so-called 'gunfight' between his accomplices and Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) in Kamarkhand upazila of Sirajganj early yesterday.

AL to recast its grassroots units

Awami League is finally set to hold councils at grassroots level across the country after Eid-ul-Azha in an effort to boost the party activities and resolve internal feuds.

Most voters favour EVM

The Narayanganj City Corporation election has brought a change in the mindset of voters in favour of the electronic voting machines, says a survey report.

Mamata threatens to quit ruling coalition

Trinamool Congress yesterday threatened to pull out of India's Congress-led coalition government protesting Thursday's petrol price hike but said it would meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh before taking "any vital decision".

3 of a family killed in road crash

Three members of a family including a child were killed in an accident on Dhaka-Mawa Highway when a reckless bus hit their motorcycle in Sirajdikhan upazila of the district early yesterday.

Fever helps!

Having a fever might be uncomfortable, but it actually helps us fight off infections.

Govt must explain its decision

BNP has demanded a clear explanation from Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her government about the non-deployment of the army in the recently held Narayanganj City Corporation (NCC) election.

2,000 Everest trekkers stranded

About 2,000 people, including tourists, are stranded in the foothills of Mount Everest because bad weather has halted flights in the area, officials say.

BNP leader murdered in Natore

Unidentified assailants killed a local leader of Jatiyatabadi Swechchhashebok Dal in Lalpur upazila of Natore Thursday night.

Simulated Mars mission ends after 520 days

Six volunteers yesterday stepped out into the outside world after spending the last one-and-a-half-years locked away in an isolation module in Moscow to simulate the effects of a return trip to Mars.

Israel navy intercepts flotilla ships off Gaza coast

The Israeli navy yesterday boarded two international ships carrying pro-Palestinian activists who were trying to run the blockade on the Hamas-run Gaza Strip, a military statement said.

Giant crack glimpsed in Antarctic ice sheet

A massive crack is growing wider in the Antarctic ice sheet and could break apart in the coming months, forming an iceberg the size of New York City, NASA scientists warned on Thursday.

Editorial

Economy under stress

It requires no expert to say that the country's economy is under strain. And these have been very well articulated by a leading think tank of the country. The CPD report highlights four major challenges facing the economy namely, implications of the new wave of the global economic crisis, deepening stresses in public finance management, unabated price inflation and increasing pressure on the balance of payments,

A dolphin sanctuary

The government move to declare 32 kilometres of the Sundarbans waterways as ''dolphin sanctuaries'' for the conservation of dolphins could not have been more timely. The waterways of the Sundarbans, says a study of Bangladesh Cetacean Development Project (BCDP), provide for the biggest habitat of two species of dolphins. Revealing as the information is, these species are exposed to danger as these waterways are also good for fishing. As a result, the dolphins, though not targeted directly, often get entangled in the fishing nets and die in a great number every year. These adversities called for immediate government intervention to save the valued species.

Sports

Bat longer, bowl more

The Bangladesh team management and the Akram Khan-led selection committee go into this Eid vacation with a whole lot to chew over.

'Clear message to players'

The jailing of three Pakistani cricketers over a fixing scandal sends a clear message to all sportsmen that cheating will not be tolerated, players' union chief Tim May said Friday.

Lankans in control

Sri Lanka removed Pakistan's openers early to gain an upper hand on the second day of the third and final cricket Test against Pakistan at Sharjah stadium here on Friday.

Aamer distraught

Pakistan's brilliant young paceman Mohammad Aamer is shattered at being jailed for deliberately bowling no-balls but will come back a clean player and a good man, a former mentor said Friday.

Fitness main concern

The national football team came from behind to play out a 1-1 draw against Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club in a warm-up match as a part of their preparation for December's SAFF Championship in India.

Siddikur struggles at HSBC

Siddikur Rahman slipped to 67th in the WGC-HSBC Champions with a one-over-par second round at the Sheshan International Golf Club in Shanghai yesterday.

British press feels for Pak trio

The imprisonment of three top Pakistani cricketers for their part in a fixing scandal is a wake-up call for the game but a tragedy for the youngest player involved, Britain's press said Friday.

Pakistan demands clean-up

A furious Pakistan demanded Friday that cricket makes good on promises to clean up corruption, declaring prison terms for three disgraced stars a wake-up call for a national sport in crisis.

Novak's quick Basel win

Novak Djokovic crushed Lukasz Kubot 6-1, 6-2 as the top seed at the Swiss Indoors showed on Thursday that his untouchable form is rapidly returning after six weeks out with injury.

Thorpe flops on return

Australian swimming great Ian Thorpe made a disappointing return to action Friday as he finished second-last in his first race since ending a five-year retirement.

Spurs come unstuck

Tottenham failed to provide their absent manager Harry Redknapp with a Europa League win after his heart operation on Thursday as elsewhere on the fourth batch of group matches five teams ensured safe passage to the round of 32.

City aim to improve

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has challenged his team to keep improving as they travel to QPR on Saturday determined to maintain their grip on the Premier League.

Normal service resumes

With Levante finally surrendering their unbeaten record last Sunday and dropping to third place behind leaders Real Madrid and Barcelona, the Spanish league has a familiar look about it again.

Juve face Napoli test

Title pretenders Napoli and Juventus go head to head at Stadio San Paolo this weekend in a clash that could reveal a lot about each side's chances of lifting the Serie A crown at the end of the season.

Diego tax case to start fresh

A tax evasion process being brought against Argentina icon Diego Maradona is to start over from scratch due to a technicality.

Butts postpone wedding

The family of Pakistan's disgraced former captain Salman Butt was so grief-stricken Friday over his 30-month sentence for corruption in Britain that it postponed his sister's wedding.

Warne to make T20 comeback

Spin legend Shane Warne has been enticed out of retirement and will make a comeback with the Melbourne Stars in Australia's Big Bash Twenty20 League, a report said Friday.

Tsonga sent packing

Second seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, ranked number eight in the world was beaten 7-6, (7/5), 6-2 in the second-round of the Valencia Open on Thursday by world number 116 Sam Querrey of the United States.

Cassano feeling well

AC Milan forward Antonio Cassano was feeling "well" after undergoing heart surgery on Friday, his club said on their website.

Harry expects swift return

Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp said Friday he expects to make a swift return after undergoing surgery for a heart problem.

Zlatan reveals fiery rows with Pep

AC Milan's star forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic will tell all in an autobiography due out in Sweden later this month, including details of his fiery rows with FC Barcelona manager Pep Guardiola.

Kevin-Prince quits Ghana

AC Milan midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng has decided to quit the Ghana national team, the country's FA has confirmed

Metropolitan

Inspiring to build a better Bangladesh

With the golden rays of the late autumn afternoon sun spreading its warmth, the ambience at Rabindra Sarobar in the city yesterday reverberated with the achievements of the daily Prothom Alo over its 13-year journey.

Fair polls not possible without caretaker govt

A fair national election, in the context of Narayanganj City Corporation (NCC) election, is not possible without a caretaker government, said noted jurist and Gono Forum President Dr Kamal Hossain yesterday.

Touring Old Dhaka

Dhaka's deserted streets during Eid present an opportunity for exploring old Dhaka. There are many sights and surprises, so where do we start and what do we cover? Here is a route I follow by foot and rickshaw when I take friends or relatives for a tour. You can see several historic Dhaka highlights in three to four hours, starting near the Court Kachari and ending at Polashi.

Cook murdered inside Eden

Unknown criminals killed a worker by slitting his throat near an under-construction dormitory inside Eden Girls' College compound at Azimpur of the city yesterday.

English language fairs generate enthusiasm

Aimed at inspiring students to improve their proficiency in English, the English Language Fair under English in Schools (EIS) initiative of The Daily Star and Robi was held in three schools of Dinajpur, Kishoreganj and Barisal yesterday.

Worker murdered in Eden college

Unknown criminals killed a worker by slitting his throat near an under-construction dormitory inside Eden Girls' College compound at Azimpur of the city yesterday.

Road accidents kill six

Six people were killed and 25 others injured in road accidents in Tangail, Mymensingh, Satkhira, Jamalpur and Brahmanbaria Thursday and early yesterday.

Khaleda asked to withdraw remarks

Leaders of Amra Muktijoddhar Sontan and Projanma Oikya Mancha, pro-liberation forums of freedom fighters' children, yesterday demanded withdrawal of the comments of the Opposition Leader and BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia.

Govt to free 113 prisoners on Eid

The government has decided to release 113 prisoners from 31 jails across the country ahead of the Eid-ul-Azha.

Sida state secretary visits DMCH

Hanna Hellquist, state secretary of Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), visited Reproductive Health Services Training and Education Program (RHSTEP) Centre at Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH) on Thursday afternoon.

Schoolgirl rape : 2 teachers held

Police arrested two schoolteachers from Keraniganj on Thursday night on allegation of assisting one of their colleagues to flee allegedly after violating a female student.

Kathin Chibar Dan celebrated

Kathin Chibar Dan, the largest religious festival of the Buddhists in Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT), concluded at Rangamati Rajban Bihar yesterday.

Ten arrested in city

Detective Branch (DB) of police, in separate drives, arrested ten people on different charges from Jatrabari and Sadarghat areas in the city on Thursday.

Schoolboy held for killing classmate

Police on Thursday arrested a schoolboy from Uzirpur in Barisal on allegation of killing his classmate entering his Mirpur Cantonment house in the city on October 31.

RU student drowns

A student of Rajshahi University (RU) drowned in a cannel of Chalan Beel yesterday afternoon.

Shibir man arrested

Police arrested one Islami Chhatra Shibir activist in connection with Rajshahi University (RU) unit Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) activist Faruk murder case from Bajitpur village in Shibganj upazila yesterday.

Housewife 'commits suicide'

A housewife allegedly committed suicide at Paikpara village in Sadar upazila early yesterday.

GD on DU Prof's house attack filed

A security officer of Dhaka University yesterday filed a General Diary (GD) with Shahbagh Police Station against some 20-25 unidentified people for their attack on the house of Dr Emran Kabir Chowdhury, a professor of the university and a member of the Public Service Commission.

4 auto-rickshaw lifters held

Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) arrested four CNG-run auto-rickshaw lifters and recovered two auto-rickshaws from Khulshi area in the port city on Thursday.

Two drug peddlers jailed

Two drug peddlers were sentenced to six months imprisonment in the district on Thursday.

15 currency detectors given to police

Bangladesh Bank, Rangpur branch has handed over 15 currency screening machines to Rangpur police to detect fake currencies in the cattle markets.

Two bodies found

Police recovered two bodies, including a teenage boy, from Gorosthanpara in Gaibandha municipality area and Shishudaha village in Palashbari upazila yesterday.

Qulkhwani

The Qulkhwani of Khondker Anwar Uz Zaman, the former additional chief engineer of Bangladesh Sugar & Food Industries Corporation and managing director of Oyster Resource Ltd, will be held after Asr prayers at his Green Road residence in the city today. He died on November 2.

Obituary

Freedom fighter Abdus Sattar Sardar died of old-age complications at his residence in Dighapatia village of Sadar upazila Thursday night at the age of 67.

Dr Abdul Aziz Sarker

Dr Abdul Aziz Sarker of Dakkhin Gideri in Gaibandha Sader upazila passed away at Rangpur Medical College Hospital due to brain hemorrhage yesterday morning. He was 65.

International

Greek PM faces survival vote

Prime Minister George Papandreou faces a knife-edge confidence vote yesterday, with the fate of both the nation's EU/IMF bailout deal and the global economy in the balance.

Pakistan's nuke weapons vulnerable to theft: Report

Pakistan has begun moving its nuclear weapons in low-security vans on congested roads to hide them from US spy agencies, making the weapons more vulnerable to theft by Islamist militants, two US magazines reported yesterday.

Palestine UN state bid suffers new setback

Palestinian UN bid received a blow yesterday as the UK, France and Colombia said they would abstain in any vote on Palestinian membership, according to a UN source.

Extreme poverty rises in US: Study

The number of Americans living in extreme poverty has grown by more than one-third over the past decade, the Brookings Institution said in a study out Thursday.

Spice up 'boring' sermons

The Vatican's top cultural official yesterday hit out at sermons he said were too often dreary and bland and urged Catholic priests not to shy away from spicing up their preaching.

Palestinians seek UN act on Israeli reprisal

The Palestinian Authority on Thursday called on the UN Security Council to condemn Israeli reprisal actions set in motion after Unesco voted to accept the Palestinians as full members.

Doubts mount on Syria peace deal

Syrian security forces killed at least eight people and wounded dozens as they cracked down on protests after Friday prayers, activists said, casting doubt on whether an Arab League plan can end months of bloodshed.

Hazare to head anti-Congress drive

Indian social activist Anna Hazare, whose campaign for a tough anti-corruption law has drawn huge public support, vowed yesterday to start a new movement against the ruling Congress party.

Pakistan not sincere about deal: India

A senior Indian government source accused Pakistan yesterday of backtracking since announcing it had granted its neighbour the trading status of Most Favoured Nation, but Islamabad immediately denied the allegation.

Cuba allows private home sales

The Castro government has allowed individuals to buy and sell homes for the first time in 50 years, bringing relief to Cubans celebrating the latest reforms of the island's Soviet-style economy.

G20 powers pledge to boost growth

The leaders of world biggest economic powers turned their attention on Italy yesterday, pressing for measures to prevent Rome from following Greece into the abyss of debt.

Dozens trapped in China mine

Rescuers in China were battling against the clock yesterday to rescue 50 coal miners trapped underground after a sudden explosion of rocks killed four of their colleagues.

Giant crack glimpsed in Antarctic ice sheet

A massive crack is growing wider in the Antarctic ice sheet and could break apart in the coming months, forming an iceberg the size of New York City, NASA scientists warned on Thursday.

Supporters raises $1.5 lac for Ai

Chinese artist Ai Weiwei said yesterday thousands of supporters had raised more than one million yuan to help him pay a huge tax fine imposed after he was released from detention.

Call for Australia, US security pact with India

Australia and the United States should form a three-way security dialogue with India, in part to help counter any naval aggression from China, a paper released yesterday said.

'Air car' of the future

It might look like as space hopper surrounded by model helicopters, but the 16-rotor E-Volo is an entirely new kind of helicopter - which can hover motionless in the air without input from the pilot

Jury may decide fate of Jackson doctor

The fate of Michael Jackson's doctor Conrad Murray could be decided Friday (US time) when the jury in his manslaughter trial start deliberating, after lawyers clashed at the climax of the high-profile case.

Japan computer smashes speed record

A Japanese supercomputer has broken its own record as the world's fastest machine by performing 10 quadrillion calculations per second, its developers announced.

Army opposes revoking of Kashmir law

A top Indian army official says harsh emergency laws in Indian Kashmir should not be revoked until Pakistan ends its "interference" in the revolt-hit region.

Chemical stockpile intact in Libya

Libya's stockpiles of sulfur mustard agent and chemicals used to make weapons are intact and were not stolen during the uprising that toppled Muammar Gaddafi, weapons inspectors said yesterday.

Chinese supporters donate $150,000 to Ai Weiwei

Chinese artist Ai Weiwei said Friday thousands of supporters had raised more than one million yuan to help him pay a huge tax fine imposed after he was released from detention.

176 police arrested in Honduras over crime links

A total of 176 police officers from the same unit have been arrested in Honduras for alleged links to organized crime gangs, the Honduran Security Ministry said Thursday.

Earthquakes killed 780,000 in past decade

Earthquakes claimed more than 780,000 lives in the past decade, accounting for nearly 60 percent of all disaster-related deaths, according to a study published in The Lancet yesterday.

Arts & Entertainment

Mir Sabbir @DS CAFÉ

With a career spanning over a decade, Mir Sabbir has over hundreds of TV plays, tele-films and serials under his belt. Appearances on the silver screen have also spelled success for the talented artiste. The actor, who has also tried his hand at direction, recently came to DS Cafe and caught up with his fans.

Festive mood at Fantasy Kingdom and Foy's Lake

Concord Entertainment's Fantasy Kingdom Complex in Ashulia, near Dhaka, includes Fantasy Kingdom, Water Kingdom, Heritage Park, X-treme Racing Go-kart and Motel Atlantis, and is a delight for children and adults alike.

Nayan's photography exhibition at Gallery Chitrak

Tanvir Zahid Nayan's solo photography exhibition was held at Gallery Chitrak [from November 2-4]. The young television producer recently drowned in a pond. He was the executive producer of Channel Ekattur.

Play it Now set for launch

G-Series is set to bring out the album, “Play It Now!”, featuring 17 up and coming bands, today.

Skyfall opens new chapter for 007

The title of next James Bond film has been revealed as “Skyfall” -- so what can we expect from the 23rd film in the 007 franchise?

National Rhyme Festival to begin in the city

'National Rhyme Festival 2011' is going to be held on November 12 at Shawkat Osman Memorial Auditorium of Central Public Library in Dhaka.

OP-ED

Punishment by beheading

The multiple beheadings, particularly of Bangladeshi nationals accused of murder in Saudi Arabia in the recent past, have attracted adverse attention of liberal thinkers and human rights activists, at home and abroad. Some have questioned the legal wisdom of beheading eight accused persons for the alleged murder of a single individual. The revenge extracted and the gory manner of execution of the sentence has pained many.

At the end of the tether

In the midst of L.K. Advani's rath yatra to polarise the country and the Telangana agitation to articulate local chauvinism, India is oblivious to the "Occupy Wall Street" movement against capitalism which has given shape to what the West is today. Demonstrations are being held all over America and Europe against the grasping bankers, corrupt politicians and misgoverning administrations. It is a revolt against the capitalist system.

Can we save Dhaka city?

Once again Dhaka has attained the dubious distinction of being the second-worst polluted and unlivable city in the world by a survey conducted over 140 cities by the London-based Economist Intelligent Unit. Dhaka, once the hub of dream and optimism has descended into a nightmarish metropolis.

A new face of politics in Narayanganj

Anew face of politics emerged in Bangladesh at Narayanganj in its epoch-making city election. The Narayanganj City Corporation election has shown to the world that the people of Bangladesh can defy dirty confrontational party politics and vote in a calm, clean and peaceful way, regardless of political intimidation, for the honest candidate and individual they trust -- whether it is man or a woman. The people of Narayanganj have done a wonderful job and deserve congratulations from the rest of the people of the country. Indeed, all Bangladeshis should emulate the bravery Narayanganj people have shown in the face of political uncertainties. They have also shown that money has no place in elections and it is the people who decide.

Arabs need outside help

The Arab Spring winds of change face obstacles. History is testament to the fact that many revolutions that overthrew the then-existing ruling class ultimately failed to bring about governments “of the people.” One set of oligarchs merely got replaced by another, with the people remaining as victims. Toppling a tyrant is not the end of a struggle: it is just the beginning of another more enduring pursuit to establish good governance and a progressive society.

This Day In History

November5

1872
Women's suffrage in the United States: In defiance of the law, suffragist Susan B. Anthony votes for the first time, and is later fined $100.

Environment

Climate finance in South Asia

It is now well recognised that impacts of climate change will have significant economic costs on the affected countries. Cost of inaction will also be enormous compared to the cost of mitigation and adaptation. Though there is controversy about the cost estimates due to the uncertainty on the magnitude of the problem, most studies indicate that the economic cost of climate change is very high. According to the famous Stern Review prepared by Sir Nicholas Stern on the “The Economic Cost of Climate Change” published in 2006, the cost of inaction is 5 percent of global GDP each year and the upper case estimate is 20 percent of GDP or even more. Poor countries will face in excess of 10 percent of GDP with 5-6°C warming by the end of the century. On the other hand, William Nordhaus has estimated that due to 3°C increase in temperature and precipitation there will be a cost equivalent to 3 percent of global GDP.

Can SAARC make a difference?

Talking about faeces or latrine is neither romantic nor attractive for both politicians and media. But it is a reality in South Asia where more than one billion people simply don't have toilet to perform their natural functions. Many men, women and children still defecate in open places which are highly undignified. They are exposed to severe health risks, violence and adding to environmental pollution. Majority of schools in all the countries of South Asia don't have adequate toilets and hand washing facilities for students, hence a chance to change behaviour in next generation is missing out.

Literature

Tomas Transtromer: Grand old man of poesy

At long last the ultimate accolade in literature-- the 10 million kronor award. The Nobel Prize (2011) was awarded to the octogenarian Swede, Tomas Transtromer, who has been a perennial frontrunner for the prize for several years now. It was to many 'a happy end to a long wait'. The award, however, is not past criticism, for highly acclaimed writers like Leo Tolstoy, Marcel Proust, James Joyce and Graham Greene were not found suitable for it.

Into the heart of the Sundarbans

The plane would take off at 10 a.m. so we hurried for the airport right after breakfast. The others were still arriving. Everyone was wearing dark clothes to match with the flora. Minu and Shimul were chirpy. So were the others. As soon as Milon da called us to board the plane, the entire group of twenty began their exciting journey to the Sundarbans.

Rise and fall . . . . . . .

She lies in her mother's arms wearing nothing but a pair of tan trousers. Her stomach rises and falls as her flesh expands and contracts with each gasp of life. A golden-brown child with a blue oxygen mask held over her mouth and nose. I sit in a corner with my elbows resting on my knees, hands clasped together in contemplation and eyebrows heavy with sleep. My mother sits next to me in a purple salwar kameez with light red marks around her neck and eyes. She says they burn. We are hypnotised by the baby's struggle to live. Her mother helplessly cradles the child while sitting in a plastic chair next to a black and white oxygen tank. She is not much older than I am. Her head and body are covered in a deep purple hijab. Her baby may not live.

Will there ever be…?

An event without a masquerade
An episode without fraud
A faith without surprise costs
A deal without inducement
An encounter without malice
Praise without a purpose
A campaign without deceit
A promise without a shelf life
An embrace without a camera pan
A palm without a grab
A zone without friction
A breeze without the drift of the forgotten litter
A land without greedy weeds
A fragrance beyond the floral
Spirits defying frames
Spontaneity minus drafts
Drafts without edit
Ink without fowl spotting
A conviction without dictation
A history without complicity
A pace without fear
A vision without a tint
A path with a promise
A journey beyond a doubt
A swim without delusion
A charter without compromise
A sea sans the famished waves
A shore without betrayal
A justice above prescription
A defense without a plea
Surrender without a bargain
A howl for the truth
A claim to the evident
An aid without an agenda
A dialogue without hesitation
An election without a stage
Votes freed from fear
A victory crushing facades
A border without a threat
A Desh without squander
A leader beyond bias
A nation without a lie
An end without an ouster…?

Star Health

Caring for mothers after delivery

When twenty years old housewife Jamila went into labour, her mother-in-law decided the most common mode of delivery in Bangladesh — home delivery. Her family members called a local Dai (traditional birth attendant) to deliver the second baby of Jamila. As her first child is a baby girl, everybody in that family became happy when she delivered a baby boy this time. Everyone drew their attention to the newborn baby. As Jamila’s job was done and nobody actually took care of her.

Eye care services for the urban poor in Dhaka city

Bangladesh National Blindness and Low Vision Survey 2003 revealed that more than 64,000 people in Dhaka city are blind; of these numbers 50,400 are due to cataract. Around 10,000 new cases of cataract blindness occur every year. 330,000 adults and 120,000 children suffer from severe visual impairment caused by uncorrected refractive error, which could be easily corrected with the use of spectacles.

Pneumonia on the rise, stay cautioned

The recent report of rising number of Pneumonia cases among the children in different parts of Bangladesh, especially in northern districts has raised the concern to parents, health experts. Experts identified weather change the main reason behind the sudden surge of Pneumonia, superadded by flourishing of Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) followed by secondary bacterial infection, malnutrition and lack of awareness on how to care children.

Seminar on heart, colorectal and gynaecological diseases

ParkwayHealth, which owns and operates Mount Elizabeth, Gleneagles and Parkway East Hospitals in Singapore, recently organised a seminar on “Heart, Colorectal and Gynaecological Diseases” at a local hotel in Dhaka.

Pill lowers ovarian cancer risk

Women who take the Pill for 10 years almost halve their risk of ovarian cancer, according to a study. But experts say this must be balanced against the risk of breast cancer, which is higher in women on the Pill.

Breastfeeding tied to lower blood pressure risk

Mothers who breastfeed for the recommended amount of time may have a somewhat lower risk of developing high blood pressure later on, new research results published in the American Journal of Epidemiology suggests. In general, experts recommend that babies should be breastfed exclusively for their first six months, then continue getting breast milk along with solid food until they are a year old.

Strategic Issues

SAARC 2011: Why do we need regional cooperation?

Though South Asia was relatively late in evolving an institutional framework, the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) is a name of hope and expectation for the people of South Asia. In spite of economic trouble, South Asia has significant potentialities for overall development.

Tunisian election: Stability vs democracy paradox in Middle East

A stable and democratic Middle East is essentially vital component for global peace. The Arab spring has brought a historic moment of democratising this conflict-ridden region of the world. With the fall of the dictators previously suppressed Islamist parties are emerging in power. Question remains whether continuation of US policy of double standard in the region would destroy the fruits of democratisation and pave the door for emergence of radical forces in the region making the Middle East more unstable in the coming decade.

Drones may win battles, but not the war

In September, Anwar al-Awlaki, the alleged Osama bin Laden of the Internet, was killed by an American drone after he stepped out of his truck in the remote interior of Yemen. Last week, another American drone killed the brother of a top Pakistani Taleban commander and three other aides.

Star Books Review

Of values that used to be, of culture that yet remains

Old values are what Syed Moqsud Ali speaks of in this narrative of what has been a fruitful life. In a work that encompasses an entirety of a family tale, the writer in essence brings forth all the traditions, as it were, that once were an underpinning of life in this country. These are the writer's memoirs and yet they could be interpreted as expressions of the sentiments that have bound Bengali families and clans together for ages. All history begins with the personal before broadening out to a wider swath of experience. And that is the point which Ali makes at the beginning of his narrative. He goes out in search of his roots and comes away from the density of tradition enriched in terms of his discovery. It is discovery that most, if not all, of us can relate to. There is that identification not just with class but with the accompaniments of aspirations which come with it as well.

When bullying leads to tragedy

Nineteen Minutes is an overwhelming book. Although based on real-life incidents, the story takes off on its own course, the less-travelled one. Jodi Picoult (who never disappoints us), uses a school shooting as the plot for her book, and presents a whole new perspective…with her usual pathos and poignancy.

India's dark underbelly

Aravind Adiga won the Man Booker Prize for his first novel, White Tiger (2008), a dark underbelly account of a master/servant relationship that, through violence, reverses the previous class order while simultaneously questioning centuries old beliefs and practices in his native India. A year later, Adiga published an equally dark comedy, also probing traditional roles of caste and culture. More a collection of linked short stories, Between the Assassinations (2009), for me, was the stronger book. The prolific Adiga has now written a second novel, Last Man in Tower, returning to the same themes by ratcheting up the question that greed plays in destroying decades-old friendships while probing the place of violence in destroying those relationships once assumed to be sacrosanct.

DSC South Asian Literature 2012 shortlist

The shortlist for the second annual DSC Prize for South Asian Literature was announced at a prestigious gala event at London's Globe Theatre recently. Long-listed authors, publishers, London's literati, ambassadors from the South Asian region gathered together for the event, which was also the finale of the 2011 DSC South Asian Literature Festival in London. Guests were treated to a stirring performance by award-winning producer and Tabla player Talvin Singh, alongside Sarod maestro Soumik Datta, while the winner of the first DSC Prize, Pakistani writer H.M. Naqvi gave a dazzling reading from his winning novel Home Boy, which has just been published by Penguin in the UK.


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