The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Tuesday, July 29, 2014


News of: Wednesday, 11th of January, 2012

Front Page

JU erupts in protests

Over a thousand teachers and students mounted angry protests yesterday, staging processions across the campus and sit-ins on the premises of the vice-chancellor's office, after the killing of a student had sent shock waves through Jahangirnagar University.

Tension over protest against high fees

Agitating students of Jagannath University yesterday called for boycotting classes and examinations for an indefinite period from today, demanding cancellation of a development fee the university administration has been charging freshers with their admission fees.

BNP to press for caretaker govt

In today's talks with President Zillur Rahman, BNP will stick to its core demand -- restoration of caretaker government system, party leaders have said.

Ghulam Azam appeals for bail

Former Jamaat-e-Islami ameer Ghulam Azam filed a bail petition with the International Crimes Tribunal yesterday, a day prior to his appearance before the tribunal for his alleged crimes against humanity during the Liberation War.

Return to JS, raise your demand

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday asked opposition leader Khaleda Zia to return to parliament and say whatever they like on the caretaker government issue.

Prepaid gas meters put into operation

The government yesterday formally inaugurated prepaid gas meters for the residential consumers of the capital's Lalmatia and Mohammadpur areas in a bid to reduce wastage of the utility as part of its key plan to ease gas crisis.

BCL violence and the VC's 'blessings'

Rival factions of Bangladesh Chhatra League have engaged in at least 20 violent clashes on the Jahangirnagar University campus in the last three years.

ISPR protests Khaleda's remarks on army

The Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) yesterday said Khaleda Zia's remarks on Monday about the army were misleading and provocative.

PM flies to Tripura today

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will leave for a two-day visit to Agartala, the capital of Indian state of Tripura, today to receive an honorary doctorate degree and promote business with the northeastern state.

Cops ignore rules of raid, arrest

In clear violation of the Criminal Procedure Code, detective police picked up six men at Purana Paltan in Dhaka on Sunday night and for 14 hours left their families in fear that they could be secretly killed or made to disappear.

Deadly blast kills 35 in Pakistan

A remote-controlled bomb blast killed 35 people and wounded more than 60 others yesterday in the deadliest attack in months in the Taliban-hit tribal region of northwest Pakistan.

White House chief of staff resigns

President Barack Obama said Monday his chief of staff Bill Daley, brought into the White House to repair tarnished ties with big business, was stepping down in an early election-year staff shake-up.

A millionaire veg vendor

A vegetable vendor turned drug dealer did very well for 14 years but yesterday he finally got arrested along with his wife. The couple owns a four-storey building in Narayanganj, several flats in Dhaka, and an array of motor vehicles.

Close aide of Bangla Bhai arrested

A close aide of executed Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) kingpin Siddiqul Islam alias Bangla Bhai was arrested at Uttara in the capital late Monday night.

Sayedee was treasurer of looted goods

Ruling Awami League lawmaker AKM Abdul Awal yesterday alleged Jamaat-e-Islami leader Delawar Hossain Sayedee dismantled the house of one Madan Shaha and took the parts to his father-in-law's house in Parerhaat in 1971.

4 of a family killed in road crash

Five people including four members of a family were killed as a bus rammed their CNG-run auto-rickshaw on Bangabandhu Bridge in Sirajganj yesterday afternoon.

Defamation cases against TIB officials dismissed

Two Chittagong courts dismissed two defamation cases filed against three officials of Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) after publishing its survey report in 2010 saying the judiciary is the most corrupt service sector in the country.

Khmer Rouge lawyers slam PM's 'killer' remarks

Lawyers for a top Khmer Rouge leader accused of genocide yesterday condemned alleged remarks by Cambodian Premier Hun Sen describing their client as a "killer" whose testimony was "deceitful".

London nods to high speed rail link

Britain's government yesterday approved the construction of a high-speed rail network linking London with cities in central and northern England from 2026 at a cost of almost £33 billion.

Israel approves jail without trial for illegal

The Israeli parliament passed tough new legislation targeting illegal immigration early yesterday, giving authorities powers to detain migrants for up to three years without charge.

Rajuk files case against Bashundhara

Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha yesterday filed a case against East West Property Development, a concern of Bashundhara Group, for filling up Boalia canal illegally in the capital's Khilkhet area.

Editorial

Abysmal failure to control BCL

The recent death of Zubair Ahmed, a fourth-year student of English department at JU, once again lays bare the unbridled BCL rowdyism turning the public universities into veritable battle grounds for exerting power. After finishing one of his honours final year exams, he had come out only to be picked and beaten up allegedly by a rival faction of BCL that led to his death. We vehemently condemn the dastardly act and urge the university administration to bring the killers to book.

Welcome alternative to hartal

Opposition BNP leader's success with road marches has sort of peaked through the long and eventful march to Chittagong followed by a mammoth public rally at the port city on Monday.

Sports

Muktis break MSC hearts

Muktijoddha Sangsad ousted Mohammedan to confirm their quarterfinal berth after handing the Black and Whites a 3-1 defeat in their Group A encounter at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.

Chittagong priciest at $1.2m

The six franchises of the Bangladesh Premier League were sold off in a trice.

Emeka surprised at gravity of challenge

Before taking charge of Mohammedan SC, Nigerian coach Emeka Euzegio knew the depth of the challenge facing him. But suffice to say, he did not expect the experience with his beloved Mohammedan to be so bitter, after his first assignment saw his charges crash out from the group stage of the Grameenphone Federation Cup.

Lions bite back

England Lions levelled the series 1-1 through a six-wicket win over Bangladesh A in the second one-day game at the Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chittagong yesterday.

BCB CEO Manzur no more

Manzur Ahmed, the chief executive officer of Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) and a former cricketer, passed away yesterday. He was 55.

Premier League returns today

The Dhaka Premier Cricket League resumes today at three different venues after a five-day break.

Hard wins for top guns

World number one Caroline Wozniacki and her chief rankings rival Petra Kvitova had demanding three-set introductions to the Sydney International in their first official matches of the season on Tuesday.

Baptism for de Villiers

AB de Villiers takes on a new challenge when he captains South Africa in the first one-day international against Sri Lanka at Boland Park on Wednesday.

Brad plays mental game

Australian vice-captain Brad Haddin has taken aim at struggling India, saying the tourists "break quicker than anyone in the world" and turn on each other when things are not going their way.

Venus out of Aussie Open

Seven-time Grand Slam singles champion Venus Williams withdrew from the Australian Open on Monday as she struggles to return from the autoimmune disease Sjogren's syndrome.

MSC officials brawl at box

Mohammedan's continuous poor performance in the Grameenphone Federation Cup prompted its former and current officials to exchange heated words for the second time.

Army maul Jessore

Bangladesh Army thrashed Jessore by 15-0 goals in the Trust Bank-Viyellatex 28th National Hockey Championship at the Maulana Bhasani Hockey Stadium yesterday.

Kalabagan, Eskaton win

Kalabagan defeated Khelaghar by six wickets in their First Division Super League match at the BKSP-3 yesterday. Batting first Khelaghar made 186-8 in 48 overs. In reply Kalabagan reached their target in 46.1 overs with Saiful Islam top scoring with 75 runs. In the day's other match Eskaton defeated Bangladesh Boys by five wickets at the Dhanmondi Cricket Stadium. Put into bat Bangladesh Boys were all out for 130 in 46.3 overs with Samiul taking 3-13. In reply Eskaton reached their target in 42.5 overs with Sakhawat making 39 runs.

Army, Navy to battle it out

Bangladesh Army and Bangladesh Navy will fight for the title deciding match of the Citycell 25th National Basketball Championship at the Dhanmondi Indoor Basketball Gymnasium today. The match will start at 3:30pm. Information and Cultural Affairs Minister Abul Kalam Azad will distribute prizes as the chief guest at the closing ceremony.

Leo in pantheon of greats

Lionel Messi became only the second man to win three consecutive Ballon d'Or awards on Monday and the question now begging to be asked is: could he become the greatest player of all time?

Platini lauds Messi

UEFA president Michel Platini heralded Lionel Messi as "a killer" on Monday after the Barcelona star matched the Frenchman's record of having won three consecutive Ballon d'Or awards.

Henry's dream return

Thierry Henry needed just over 10 minutes to mark his Arsenal return with the winning goal as Leeds United were edged out 1-0 at the Emirates Stadium in the FA Cup third round on Monday.

Moratti after Tevez

Inter Milan president Massimo Moratti hasn't given up hope of securing the signature of Carlos Tevez, despite neighbours AC Milan appearing to be in prime position to land the Argentine.

Bayern dazzle Indian fans

European giants Bayern Munich dazzled nearly 35,000 cheering fans during an impressive 4-0 win over India in an exhibition game on Tuesday.

Donadoni replaces Colomba

Former Italy coach Roberto Donadoni has been named the new coach of Serie A side Parma after Franco Colomba was unceremoniously dismissed following a heavy defeat.

Henry eyes more goals

Thierry Henry is determined to extend his Arsenal goalscoring record after making a fairytale return for the Londoners in the FA Cup victory over Leeds.

Cantona bids for presidency

Footballer-turned-actor Eric Cantona is lining up a long-odds shot at the French presidency, according to a report Tuesday.

Business

Current account falls into deficit

The current account balance entered a negative terrain for the first time in the current fiscal year as exports receipts and remittances could not fill in the gap in trade deficit.

Stocks slip for fourth day

Indicators of twin bourses declined for a fourth day, influenced by speculations about the central bank's new move to tighten monetary policy to control inflation.

Rahimafrooz gets nod to launch unit in India

Battery maker Rahimafrooz eyes a big jump in sales in the Indian market as the company won a battle to set up a subsidiary in the neighbouring country, a senior official of the company said yesterday.

WB's Goldstein meets Muhith on Padma bridge today

The World Bank may discuss funds for the Padma Bridge with the government today, officials of the finance ministry said.

SEC okays rights offer of RN Spinning

The Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday approved a rights offer of RN Spinning Mills.

Central bank asks FIs to submit CSR statements

Bangladesh Bank on Monday directed financial institutions (FIs) to submit their statements on corporate social responsibility and report on gender equality related performance indicators on half-yearly basis.

Doubt over 7pc GDP growth

The Foreign Investor's Chamber yesterday doubted the government's possibility of achieving the targeted 7 percent GDP growth in current fiscal year under the existing economic scenario.

Myanmar keen to increase trade: envoy

Myanmar Ambassador to Bangladesh U Min L Win yesterday expressed hopes for increasing bilateral trade and business between the two countries.

Inflation to simmer down in Q4: BB

The Bangladesh Bank (BB) expects the soaring inflation will be stable in the coming months and come down to single-digit in the last quarter (Q4) of current financial year.

HeidelbergCement Group chairman due today

Bernd Scheifele, chairman of the managing board of HeidelbergCement Group, is scheduled to arrive in Bangladesh today.

Tourism info on fingertips

The Bangladesh Parjatan Corporation (BPC) yesterday signed a contract with SSL Wireless to provide tourism related services via mobile phones aiming at promoting tourism in the country.

Hasina seeks more Chinese investment

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday sought massive Chinese investment in Bangladesh, especially in textiles, agro-processing, energy and power, pharmaceuticals, communications and infrastructure development.

New chief for IPDC

Mominul Islam has recently been appointed as the new managing director of Industrial Promotion and Development of Bangladesh (IPDC), the organisation said in a statement yesterday.

Factories in port city cry for gas, power

Many of the newly built factories in Chittagong are yet to go for production, while some existing ones are running below their capacity due to a severe gas and power crisis in the port city, said Murshed Murad Ibrahim, president of Chittagong Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI).

Why isn't capitalism working?

Americans have traditionally been the most enthusiastic champions of capitalism. Yet a recent American public opinion survey found that just 50 percent of people had a positive opinion of capitalism while 40 percent did not. The disillusionment was particularly marked among young people 18-29, African Americans and Hispanics, those with incomes under $30,000 and self-described Democrats.

Metropolitan

JMB trying to reorganise

Leaders and activists of banned Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) were trying to reorganise giving priority to collecting funds from their wellwishers and building communication with grassroots activists.

Tributes paid to Bangabandhu

The nation yesterday observed the historic Homecoming Day of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman with due respect.

Main opposition patronises militants

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday reaffirmed her commitment to contain terrorism, militancy and women and child trafficking alongside continuing efforts to strengthen democracy.

Fate of 20,000 Bangladeshis in Malaysia uncertain

Fate of around 20,000 Bangladeshi jobseekers, who have yet to avail passports from the Bangladesh mission in Kuala Lumpur, has become uncertain as the Malaysian government's deadline to appeal for regularisation ended yesterday.

Huji leader appeals for discharge

Mohammad Ujjal alias Ratan, a leader of Harkat-ul Jihad al Islami (Huji), appealed to a Dhaka court yesterday, to discharge him from the August 21 grenade attack cases.

Human rights of indigenous people grossly violated, says report

The indigenous people of the country faced gross violation of human rights last year while the perpetrators enjoyed full impunity even after committing crimes like murder, rape, and arson, a report has said.

AL wants strong EC: Suranjit

The ruling Awami League will propose a strong and neutral Election Commission (EC) during its dialogue with the president scheduled for Thursday, Railways Minister Suranjit Sengupta said yesterday.

Road crashes kill 4

Four people were killed and at least 27 others injured in separate road accidents in Dinajpur, Chapainawabganj, Satkhira and Kishoreganj yesterday.

Unicef boss for attention to urban slum children

Executive Director of Unicef Dr Anthony Lake stressed the need paying urgent attention to children in urban slums.

Fake notes seized

Police seized a huge quantity of fake notes of taka, equipments for producing those, and arrested one person at a local hotel in Narayanganj Monday night.

India launches Tagore web-bibliography

In a boost to students and researchers of Rabindranath Tagore, a web-based bibliography comprising his works and literary criticisms on his works published in India and abroad has been prepared by India's national committee set up to commemorate the 150th birth anniversary of the poet.

Councillors for hike in honorarium

Municipal councillors at a press conference yesterday called for an increase in their honorariums alongside mayors'.

Viqarunnisa's ex-principal gets bail

A Dhaka court yesterday granted bail to Husne Ara Begum, former principal of Viqarunnisa Noon School and College, in a case filed in connection with violation of a female student last year.

Hearing on remand prayer Jan 15

Investigation into the brutal killing of six students by a mob in Aminbazar has taken a new turn as investigation officer (IO) of the case got important information from interrogation.

Steps taken to cut poverty

Minister for Fisheries and Livestock M Abdul Latif Biswas yesterday said the present government has taken various steps to remove poverty and change the lot of the marginal farmers in the country.

Govt plans to involve NGOs in FP activities

The government has planned to involve non-government organisations (NGOs) and private sectors through public-private partnership (PPP) package for family planning services in urban slums and underserved areas of the district level, said Dr Capt (Retd) Mozibur Rahman Fakir, state minister for Health and Family Welfare.

Worker dies in rooftop fall

A construction worker died after falling from the rooftop of a building in the city's Moghbazar area yesterday.

2 new trains on Dhaka-N'ganj route

Bangladesh Railway will launch two additional train services on Dhaka-Narayanganj-Dhaka route today to ease traffic jam in the city and fulfil demand of the commuters.

DUEDAA reunion on Jan 20

Dhaka University Economics Department Alumni Association (DUEDAA) will organise its reunion on January 20 at Aangana Estate under Kapasia upazila in Gazipur, says a press release.

One electrocuted in Ctg

A man was electrocuted in Dampara area of the port city yesterday.

Save Hafiz

Md Hafizur Rahman, a schoolteacher, has been suffering from kidney disease and Hepatitis C for the last few years.

Obituary

Shamsun Nahar Chowdhury, mother of Md Shafiqul Haque Chowdhury, President of ASA, passed away at her Habiganj residence on Monday due to old age complications at the age of 80.

Ataul Haque Huku

Ataul Haque Huku, one of the organisers of freedom fighters and former president of Pabna district unit of BCL, passed away on Monday night due to old age complications at the age of 63.

Death anniversary

Today is the 41st death anniversary of Awami League leader MA Aziz, says a press release.

Abdur Rahman

Today is the 18th death anniversary of Justice Abdur Rahman Chowdhury, says a press release.

Debendra Nath

Today is the 13th death anniversary of Biplobi Debendra Nath Ghose, former member of the provincial assembly.

Envoy to Myanmar called back

The government has called back Bangladesh Ambassador in Myanmar Maj Gen Anup Kumar Chakma, an official notification issued by the Ministry of Public Administration said yesterday.

HC summons health secretary

The High Court yesterday summoned the health secretary for allegedly ignoring and misinterpreting its verdict regarding including 216 upazila family planning officers in the cadre service.

Journalist Nikhil Bhadra flies to Bangkok today

Nikhil Bhadra, a journalist who lost a leg in a city road crash two weeks ago, flies for Bangkok today for better treatment, family sources said last night.

City hospital fined

The Department of Environment (DoE) yesterday fined Square Hospital Ltd Tk 5 lakh for creating sound pollution at Panthapath in the city.

'Educate rural people on ICT'

A move is underway to educate rural people on computer using the Union Information Service Centre to create an Information and Communications Technology trained manpower.

National

Tree felling fest in name of road construction

Over 400 roadside trees are being felled in Chakamoiya union parishad (UP) of Kalapara upazila under the district as the UP recently sold the trees, planted by the forest department around 15 years ago, without any permission.

Protesters demand arrest of Satkhira BCL chief Jewel

A human chain was formed in the city yesterday demanding immediate arrest of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) Satkhira district unit President Jewel Hasan, prime accused in the case for violating a dance artiste of Khulna city in the district town on January 4.

AL, Jubo League men clash in Bogra: 5 hurt

At least five people were injured in cocktail blasts and gunfight as activists of Awami League and Jubo League clashed in Gabtoli upazila over purchasing delivery order (DO) letters of the government's test relief programme yesterday afternoon.

Schoolgirl rescued, bid to abduct college girl foiled

Police rescued a 14-year-old schoolgirl from Seedstore area of Bhaluka upazila in Mymensingh district on Monday night after 18 days of her alleged abduction from Mohanpur in Jessore.

Charges pressed against 7

A Habiganj court on Monday framed charges against seven accused in the case for killing district Tarun League convener Syed Ruhul Islam Pavel in 2010.

Krishak League chief in Rangamati abducted

Krishak League Rangamati district unit President Anil Chandra Tangchangya was kidnapped from Bogapara in Kawkhali upazila yesterday morning.

Kidnapped Prarthona's body found in septic tank

Schoolgirl Prarthona Sarkar, kidnapped two months ago in Puthia upazila, has been found murdered.

3 youths commit 'suicide'

Three youths allegedly committed suicide in Thakurgaon, Magura and Sylhet districts on Monday.

Death in road accident sparks protest

Road link with the capital city remained suspended for nearly six hours as locals blocked Dhaka-Dinajpur highway protesting death of a cattle trader in accident yesterday.

Suchitra Sen film festival kicks off

The third Suchitra Sen film festival kicked off here last night. Noted film artiste Faruk inaugurated the weeklong programme at the district town hall at about 7:30pm.

Fire damages rubber garden

A fire broke out at a rubber plantation yard at Khadimnagar in Sadar upazila on Monday afternoon. Fire service sources said the flame originated from a rubber processing plant at around 1:00pm and soon engulfed the adjoining rubber garden. On information, a fire fighting unit from the city rushed to the spot and doused the flame after an hour of hectic efforts. The loss caused by the fire could go up to Tk 1 lakh, owner of the yard and fire fighters said.

Fishing nets seized

A mobile court seized 400 kilograms of kona jal (a kind of fishing net) and 20 kg of current net worth about Tk one lakh in Mohashing River of Dani Sunamganj upazila on Sunday afternoon. However, no one was arrested. Police said the court led by upazila nirbahi officer Mursheda Zaman, upazila fishing officer Masud Zaman and sub-inspector Mujibur Rahman, conducted a drive in the river at about 2:00pm and seized the illegal nets.

Indian rupees recovered

Police recovered around three lakh Indian rupees from a bus at Banbelgharia of the district town on Monday evening. Assistant Superintendent of Police Munshi Shahab Uddin said on secret information, a team of Narcotics Control Department raided a Kushtia-bound bus from Rajshahi and recovered 597 notes of Indian rupees. However, none was arrested, the ASP added.

8 of a family fall sick

Eight members of a family fell seriously sick due to food poisoning after having dinner at Khalishkhali village in Sharsha upazila on Sunday night. Victim Nazim Uddin said they went to bed shortly after having a meal at about 11:00pm. Later, they fell ill one after another and became unconscious. Being informed, one of their neighbours rushed in and sent them to Jessore Medical College Hospital.

Spurious soybean oil seized

Members of Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) arrested three people along with spurious soybean oil at Singra Bazar of Singra upazila early Tuesday. The arrestees are Shafiul Kader, salesman of Asif Agro Limited, trucker Abdur Razzak and helper Abdur Rahman Sheikh. Police said locals found the contaminated oil under the brand “Daily Soybean” was being unloaded at a store at dead of night and informed the elite force. Later, the Rab men rushed to the spot and seized the soybean oil manufactured with water and colour.

Man kills cousin

A man was killed allegedly by his cousin over a family feud at Kaliajuri in the district town on Monday night. Police said, there had been a longstanding family feud between the victim, Abdul Mannan, and his cousin Sakib. Sakib along with his friends called Mannan out of his shop at about 9:30pm and stabbed him indiscriminately, police said. Locals rescued Mannan in a critical condition and rushed him to Comilla Medical College and Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.

Letters

Relocate the tanneries

I live near Hazaribagh Government Leather College, Dhaka. We cannot sleep well at night because of the noise coming from the tanneries. The noise becomes louder at dead of night. About 90 percent tanneries of the country are located at Hazaribagh. So nobody wants to stay here. Even the tannery owners do not live in the area.

Dangerous trends in the economy

Inflation rate in Bangladesh is now prevailing at a double digit figure, approximately twelve percent. Inflation rate is considered one of the most important macro-economic indicators. Bangladesh's economy is at its worse at this moment. There are scores of reasons for rising inflation such as, demand-supply gap, poor monetary policy, lack of proper government regulations and policy decisions, excessive expenditures on non-productive sectors, import-export imbalances, etc. Inflation contributes to the loss of purchasing power, decrease in real income and a prolonged negative impact on investment. Given that we have twelve percent inflation rate till date, our savings rate remains somewhere around twelve percent or below. Now consider its consequences. We invest in different savings instruments with the sole objective of a good return whereas we end up with fewer amounts compared to what we had before in real terms! This is a nightmarish situation for any economy that exhibits a very dangerous trait if we consider the market dynamics such as multiplier effect, people's expectations, and demand-supply equilibrium. It is hard to survive in such a situation where people are struggling to obtain their basic needs. Hence, it demands drastic measures on the part of the policy makers.

We need cautious optimists

Depending upon the lens through which one analyses Bangladesh's current economic development, anyone will arrive at different conclusions. This is similar to the parable of four blind men who conclude differently as they touch different parts of an elephant's body. The one touching the tail compares the animal with a rope, the one feeling the trunk thinks it to be a snake, while the one touching the body decides that it must be like a wall. Like the blind, we also miss the big picture if we fail to recognise the different lenses and conclusions. At one extreme are the optimists who embrace free trade, free markets, liberalisation, and privatisation.

Kamal Majumder's excesses

Kamal Ahmed Majumder, who assaulted a female journalist recently, is known for terrorizing people who dare to speak against him using his goons. He is the president of the management committee of the reputed Monipur High School & College and is allegedly stealing money from the funds of the institution.

BCL leaders' attempted rape

I was worried to learn the news of an attempted rape by two top leaders of BCL in Satkhira recently. Many a time, the leaders of BCL in different institutions committed this kind of heinous crime. In most cases, the culprits went away unpunished. The BCL is embarrassing the present government repeatedly. We know that our PM has special feelings for our women and children. She is also vocal against repression on women. But it surprises us when we hear that after such a barbaric incident, the BCL committee of the district concerned has been dissolved only. Is that the punishment for a crime like rape?

Making students e-textbook savvy

It is commonly believed that digital or e-textbooks would significantly lower the cost of pursuing education. But a recent study at the Daytona State College, Florida, United States found a quite different result! Students who purchased e-textbooks could save only one dollar compared to those who purchased traditional printed materials. The study however identified some problems on the way to using e-textbooks which include lack of necessary computing skill on the part of the students and often faculties, difficulties in opening digital course materials during lectures, etc.

Why make OSDs?

Byron's last page report in your January 7th issue defines OSDs as those who are officially called as Officers on Special Duty, which many jokingly refer to as 'Officers Searching a Desk'! However, there is contradiction in the report. In the first paragraph, it is stated that OSDs "are considered to be in a state of punishment"! This naturally pre-supposes that some fault or mistake has been committed by the officer. In contrast, in the eighth paragraph, officials from the public administration say that "civil servants are made OSDs mainly for two reasons - they get promoted but are not given any posting and for political reasons"! It adds that "these officers get full pay and all fringe benefits, including official vehicles where due." This therefore precludes any state of punishment! Although no statistics are available, it is estimated that the government spends several crore taka a month on OSDs! Assuming that it is ten crore taka a month, it comes to hundred and twenty crore taka every year, spent for "no work with all pay"! In contrast, low paid workers in the production sector work on "no work no pay basis"! Is it not a gross injustice? If OSDs are being made as a measure of punishment, then government should consider reducing their earned leave by half the number of days they are posted as OSDs. This can be adjusted against their usually large accumulated leave during payment of final dues at the time of retirement. That will have at least some monetary effect of the punitive measure taken.

Ridding the nation of graft

I was undergoing a three-day training programme at the local Mazda Dealership with a view to becoming a professional sales person. On the second day our trainer, a veteran sales person, during midday recess, inquired who parked his car at the place designated for the customers. I replied that it was me. Then he asked me to remove the car and park it on the alleyway adjacent to the Mazda Dealership during the next break.

Readers Respond

Here are some comments that came in response to Tuesday's The Daily Star news report headlined “JU student killed in BCL infighting”

International

Gilani not an 'honest' man

Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani is not an honest man as he had not lived up to his constitutional oath, Pakistan's Supreme Court said yesterday, as it warned of action against him for failing to act on an order to reopen graft cases against President Asif Ali Zardari.

Assad blames on conspiracy

* No order given to fire on civilians
* March vote on new Syria constitution
* Vows iron fist against 'terrorists'

Malnutrition a national shame: Manmohan

As a survey made public yesterday reported high level of malnutrition among children in India, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said the problem of malnutrition “is a matter of national shame”.

Kayani meets top army officials

Chief of Army Staff General Ashfaque Pervez Kayani held an informal meeting with senior military officials at the Army General Headquarters (GHQ) yesterday following his return from China, DawnNews reported.

Egypt election enters final leg

Islamists aimed to cement control over Egypt's lower house of parliament as a final phase of voting began yesterday, while a secular party's plan to boycott elections for the upper chamber threatened to weaken the liberal bloc.

Romney set for New Hampshire win

Republican White House hopefuls faced New Hampshire voters yesterday in a first-in-the-nation primary which is all but certain to strengthen frontrunner Mitt Romney's hold on the nomination.

Bereavement raises heart attack risk

The newly bereaved are at greatly increased risk of heart attack after the death of a close loved one, US researchers say.

Nigeria fuel strike hits 2nd day

Gangs set up burning roadblocks, police fired tear gas and businesses shut in Nigeria yesterday, the second day of a national strike that has paralysed the country and left six people dead.

Suicide blast hits Afghan govt building

At least two policemen were killed when a group of suicide bombers stormed a government building in southeastern Afghanistan yesterday, the interior ministry and officials said.

Iran jamming Al-Jazeera

Iran is accused of jamming broadcasts by Qatar-based news channel Al-Jazeera, satellite operator Arabsat said in a statement received yesterday.

Thailand to pay protest victims

Thailand yesterday agreed a $63 million pot to compensate all victims of years of political unrest and aid reconciliation in the deeply divided nation, a government spokeswoman said.

Israel backs India in UNSC bid

Describing India as the "greatest democracy on earth", Israel has said it wants New Delhi to become a permanent member of the expanded United Nations Security Council.

Libya given $20b of freed assets

Libya received roughly $20 billion in assets that were held overseas by Muammer Gaddafi's regime and frozen during the conflict that ousted him, the country's foreign minister said yesterday.

Arts & Entertainment

Tribute to a master painter

The weeklong Sultan Mela-2012, marking the 87th birth anniversary of noted artist SM Sultan, began at Sultan Moncho premises in Narail on December 9. Jointly organised by the SM Sultan Foundation and the district administration, the fair is sponsored by Grameen Phone and the Ministry of Cultural Affairs.

"Selim Al Deen is a phenomenon; not just a theatre personality"

Chief of Dhaka Theatre and Selim Al Deen's lifelong friend Nasiruddin Yousuff calls the late playwright a “phenomenon in all aspects”. Yousuff feels that Al Deen should be evaluated beyond his achievements in theatre. He wants to see a nationwide festival celebrating his comrade.

Fifth International Children's Film Festival on the cards

In association with UNICEF, Children's Film Society Bangladesh will organise the Fifth International Children's Film Festival, titled “Future in Frames”, starting from January 21. The weeklong festival will begin at Shawkat Osman Memorial Auditorium of Central Public Library, Shahbagh in Dhaka.

Man with a dream

Acting, directing plays, heading the programmes division of a TV channel, involved in theatre, writing novels -- Shamim Shahed has been there, done it all. A jack of all trades, the artiste was also a journalist in the past. Shamim Shahed is a dreamer -- with most of his dreams concerning the media.

Play "Jibanta Itihash" staged in Natore

A cultural programme was held at the open stage of Nawab Siraj-Ud-Daulah Govt. College in Natore. The programme was held on the occasion of the foundation stone laying ceremony of the College Academic and Examination Hall building yesterday. Sakam Sangskritik Sangathan, a local cultural organisation, staged a play titled “Jibanta Itihash” -- aimed to raise social awareness on the trial of war criminals.

Race against time

A horse riding competition was arranged here in Chirirbandar upazila of Dinajpur recently after 20 years. Sonkoir Abdul Gafur High School and Sonkoil Primary School jointly organised the competition at its school grounds to revive an old tradition, with festivity.

Classical music performance by Paramita

Bengal Foundation arranged a classical musical soiree at Bengal Café, Dhanmondi, in the capital on January 9. The featured artiste at the soiree was talented vocalist Paramita, says a press release.

Picasso painting stolen from Greek gallery

A Picasso painting, given to the Athens National Gallery by the artist himself was stolen on Monday along with two other valuable works of art.

OP-ED

Two brave men of Prague

Vaclav Havel will be recalled for the nobility of purpose he brought into his struggle for a democratic Czecholovakia in the 1980s. But, of course, his campaign for popular liberty began long before that, through his plays and his articles and his absolute fearlessness before the powers that were. When he died recently, it was once again time to recall the tumultuous times which he inhabited, indeed helped shape, in what would soon be a post-Cold War world. By the time he died -- and this is again the unvarnished truth -- he was no more the political giant he was when he rode to power in Prague at the head of what came to be known as the Velvet Revolution; and yet that old appeal, the unforgettable charisma was always there. Havel went to his grave as one of the more widely respected political figures of his time.

My dalliance with Dhokapal Bill

W E distri-bute goodwill gene-rously on New Year's largely because there isn't much chance of seeing it again for 364 days. But cynicism is a distasteful response to the array of mobile and immobile best wishes that welcome the departure of yet another year of our lives. Having received my little share, I thought it only fair to record what precisely my five preferred best-of-the-best wishes for 2012 are.

Teesta water issue: A few hard facts

The Indian prime minister's visit to Bangladesh is considered a failure in public perception in Bangladesh because it was much hyped as one that would resolve the long-standing water-sharing issue on the Teesta River.

Ethics in banking: Part-I

A series of financial crisis that jolted the world economy over the past fifteen years or so has raised serious concerns about unethical conduct in banking operations. Regulatory authorities around the world are struggling to formulate reform measures to prevent recurrence of such malaise. Any discussion on the subject of ethics in banking inevitably requires some elaboration of what is understood by ethics, what are the functions of a bank and the interface between them.

On Syed Mahbub Murshed

January 11 is the birth anniversary of the late Justice Syed Mahbub Murshed. He will be remembered for many things, particularly his fearless independence on the Bench and many landmark judgments, chiefly on constitutional issues. Consider the following cynical statement about justice made by one Thrasymachus in Plato's Republic: “I declare that justice is nothing else than that which is advantageous to the stronger.” To Plato (and Murshed) justice was the very antithesis of this rhetorical statement. Judges are meant to be independent, but do they always dare exercise this independence in the face of a powerful executive, and when their own personal advancement may be jeopardised by the exercise of strict independence and adherence to the right, however inconvenient? In other words, there are many who behave in accordance with Thrasymachus' thinking, and a few who do not.

This Day In History

January 11

630
Prophet Muhammad (SWM) leads an army of 10,000 to conquer Mecca.


The Daily Star

© thedailystar.net, 1991-2014. All Rights Reserved