The Daily Star

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014


News of: Monday, 16th of January, 2012

Front Page

Tripura shows the right way

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's recent visit to Tripura has sparked a dialogue about expanding trade and other bilateral relations between Dhaka and Agartala.

Divine blessings sought

The first phase of Biswa Ijtema at Tongi near the capital ended yesterday afternoon with the offering of Akheri Munajat (concluding prayers) seeking divine blessings for the people of Bangladesh and the Muslim Ummah.

Eight murders in SQ Chy's 77 war crimes

The prosecution yesterday told the International Crimes Tribunal that BNP leader Salauddin Quader Chowdhury had been involved in at least 15 acts of genocide and eight murders during the Liberation War of 1971.

Prime accused surrenders

Salauddin Ahmed Bachchu, the prime accused in Lokman murder case, surrendered before a Narsingdi court yesterday after hiding for two and a half months.

Second war crimes court from March

Law Minister Shafique Ahmed yesterday said a second International Crimes Tribunal might start functioning from March this year to quickly dispose of the war crimes cases.

Black money gets a twist

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) has modified scope for black money to be invested in stocks and said money earned through criminal acts will not be allowed into the markets.

Khaleda gets bail

The High Court yesterday granted regular bail to BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia in the Barapukuria coalmine corruption case filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission.

Moudud sued over Tk 6.8cr tax dodge

A Dhaka court yesterday summoned BNP standing committee member Moudud Ahmed to appear before it on February 7 in a tax evasion case.

17 war crimes proof found against Alim

The investigators of the International Crimes Tribunal yesterday said they had found the involvement of former BNP lawmaker Abdul Alim in 17 specific incidents of crimes against humanity in the Liberation War of 1971.

Tigress rescued, to be released in safari park

A stray Bengal tigress was rescued yesterday morning near Khashitana camp of the Sundarbans.

JU functions partially

Academic activities at Jahangirnagar University resumed partially yesterday after five days of disruption as the teachers loyal to the vice chancellor conducted classes at different departments.

Shibir strike shuts Sust

Academic activities at Shahjalal University of Science and Technology (Sust) remained suspended yesterday following an indefinite strike called by Islami Chhatra Shibir on Thursday to press home their demand to withdraw 'fake cases' against them.

No rights violation

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday claimed there is no violation of human rights in the country while the National Human Rights Commission is functioning independently.

Mother pushed off roof

A father on Saturday handed over to the police his 22-year-old drug addict son who pushed his mother off the rooftop of their one-storey house in the capital's Jurain.

Pak PM won't go back on criticism of military

Pakistan's prime minister yesterday rejected a demand by the country's powerful army chief that he clarify or retract his criticism of the army and the spy agency last week, likely raising tensions further in a festering row with the military.

Iran sends rare letter of protest to US

Iran said yesterday it had evidence Washington was behind the latest killing of one of its nuclear scientists, state television reported, at a time when tensions over the country's nuclear program have escalated to their highest level ever.

Ghulam Azam stays in hospital

The jail authorities will not take former Jamaat-e-Islami ameer Ghulam Azam back to jail until the doctors at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University discharge him, said jail officials.

Yahya hinted at attacking India 10 days earlier

About 10 days before the 1971 war broke out between India and Pakistan, the then Pakistan president Yahya Khan had indicated to an American journalist his intentions of attacking India, say declassified Indian External Affairs Ministry documents.

War hero Kazi Kamal passes away

Valiant freedom fighter Kazi Kamal Uddin Ahmed, Bir Bikram, died of cancer yesterday evening at the United Hospital in the capital.

120 leaders charged

A Dhaka court yesterday framed charges against 120 leaders and activists of Jamaat-e-Islami for damaging vehicles, assaulting police and obstructing them from doing their duties on September 19 last year.

S Korean tanker explosion kills 5

A South Korean fuel tanker sank yesterday after an explosion on board, leaving five crew members dead and six missing, the coastguard said.

Editorial

Caretaker issue to the fore

Nobody can deny that the caretaker issue occupies the time and the mind of each and every concerned Bangladeshi at the present moment, primarily because they see it as the potentially most destabilising matter facing the country. And a fresh initiative on the matter has become imperative.

Drift between Pak military and civilian authorities halted

Pakistan's latest political developments unravel a defusing of civilian-military strife that had posed a threat to unsettle the parliamentary system of government in the country until last weekend. President Asif Ali Zardari met chief of army staff General Kayani. This was followed by Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani having met the army chief and the senior army officers. Clearly, Gilani has come out with an olive branch from what had been only the other day a direct verbal attack on the military that they were interfering in the political affairs of the country. This bodes well because the president and the prime minister and the armed forces have reached a rapprochement to work in harmony for strengthening constitutionalism and democracy in the country.

Sports

Jamal avoid upset

Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club almost suffered an upset at the hands of Surjo Tarun but another big-spending promoted club Brothers Union couldn't save themselves against Prime Doleshwar in the fifth round clashes of the Dhaka Premier League yesterday.

Premier league from Feb 1

Bangladesh Premier League, the top-tier professional football league, will get underway from February 1 while Bangladesh Championship League, the second-tier league, will start from February 7, decided a meeting of Bangladesh Professional Football League Committee yesterday.

India perish in Perth

Australia routed India by an innings and 37 runs inside three days on Sunday to seal a crushing 3-0 series victory against the hapless tourists.

Muktis, BJMC favourites

Star-studded Muktijoddha Sangsad and newcomers Team BJMC will be looking forward to ensuring their semifinal berths of Grameenphone Federation Cup when they take on Farashganj SC and Rahmatganj MFS respectively in the quarterfinals at the Bangabandhu National Stadium today.

Moni brings glory for the country

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has confirmed that Enamul Haque Moni will stand in the one-off Test between New Zealand and Zimbabwe at McLean Park in Napier from January 26.

Law to coach Sylhet?

Tigers coach Stuart Law could be appointed as the head coach of the Sylhet franchise in the inaugural edition of the Bangladesh Premier League that begins next month.

A functional odd couple

Australia opener David Warner admits he and partner Ed Cowan are an "odd couple" at the top of the batting order but says the combination of aggression and caution is working well.

Novak the man to beat

Defending champion Novak Djokovic will be bidding for his third consecutive grand slam trophy when the Australian Open champion gets his title defence under way in Melbourne.

Oldies' days numbered?

India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni admitted pressure was mounting on his team's star batsmen after yet another double failure by their ageing top-order in the third Test at the WACA Ground.

BCCI lambasted

Former players and the media trained their guns on India's powerful cricket board Sunday after Mahendra Singh Dhoni's team slid to another humiliating series defeat overseas.

Teams want to move on

Pakistan and England hope to move on from the 2010 spot-fixing case as they enter the first of three Tests starting in Dubai Stadium from Tuesday -- their first encounter since the scandal.

Insult to injury!

India's horrific tour of Australia got worse when captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni was suspended for one Test by the International Cricket Council (ICC) Sunday for a slow over rate.

BKSP win on Day 2

BKSP won their three-day match against Rajshahi on the second day of the Young Tigers Under-18 Cricket Competition at the Faridpur District Stadium yesterday.

Hockey reaches quarters stage

The Super League lineup of the Trust Bank-ViyellaTex 28th National Hockey Championship was completed after Bangladesh Navy emerged Group G champions with a massive 7-0 win over Patuakhali at the Maulana Bhasani National Hockey Stadium yesterday.

Scholes' storybook return

Paul Scholes scored a fairy-tale goal as Manchester United outclassed Bolton Wanderers 3-0 to go level on points with Premier League leaders Manchester City on Saturday.

Crespo, Cannavaro to play in India

Italian World Cup winning captain Fabio Cannavaro is to step out of retirement and make a comeback in India as part of a new competition aimed at kick-starting football interest in the cricket-obsessed country.

Grit helps Madrid push through

Jose Callejon grabbed a late winner for Real Madrid as Jose Mourinho's men fought back from a goal down to defeat Mallorca 2-1 and go eight points clear of bitter rivals Barcelona at the top of La Liga on Saturday.

Torres close to best: AVB

Andre Villas-Boas is convinced Fernando Torres is nearing a return to his best despite the Chelsea striker's continuing problems in front of goal.

Maicon scoffs at PSG link

Brazilian full-back Maicon's agent has dismissed speculation linking the Inter Milan player to a move to big-spending Paris St Germain.

Journeyman Rivaldo now in Angola

Former Brazil star and World Footballer of the Year Rivaldo has signed a one-year contract with Angola premier league club Kabuscorp Sport Clube do Palanca.

First child first

South Africa batsman Hashim Amla will miss the rest of the one-day international series against Sri Lanka to be with his wife who is expecting their first child, Cricket South Africa said Saturday.

Business

Sudden hike in interest rate rattles industry

A sudden but significant rise in interest rates has emerged as a threat to the local industry, which is already feeling the pinch of a record devaluation of the taka against the dollar.

New CEO for HSBC

The Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) has appointed Andrew Tilke as the chief executive officer of HSBC Bangladesh, effective from today.

Panel defines new stock index method

A stockmarket regulatory panel has adopted an international definition of the free-float methodology in market capitalisation to introduce a new index for a more accurate reflection of market movements.

SEC asks merchant banks to diversify business

The stockmarket regulator yesterday advised merchant banks to diversify their business, now limited to margin loans.

MRDI, MTB to provide education funds for char children

Management and Resources Development Initiative (MRDI) yesterday signed a deal with Mutual Trust Bank (MTB) and Sharifpara Temporary Registered Primary School of Char Fashion, Bhola to help flourish the school.

Japan frets over EU downgrades

Japanese Finance Minister Jun Azumi on Sunday expressed worries over his nation's own sovereign debt rating after Standard and Poor's downgraded nine debt-laden EU countries, including France.

Stocks plunge in quiet trade

Stocks plunged yesterday as investors did not park fresh funds in the market.

How ratings agencies work

Downgrades of credit ratings can lead to shifts of billions of dollars in investments, but the decisions come down to the work of a couple of analysts who use largely public sources of information.

Market research: a guide to good business

Proper dissemination of research-based information is absent in the market. Both the business community and government are in the dark about the real shenanigans of the market.

S&P action turns up the heat on EU leaders

Two weeks before a new summit, European leaders are under pressure to deliver a credible solution to the debt crisis after Standard & Poor's punished their policies with stinging credit downgrades.

Sarkozy to bet on growth reforms as AAA slips away

The loss of France's much-prized triple-A credit rating three months from elections that will likely hinge on the handling of the economy is a bitter blow for French President Nicolas Sarkozy, who had made the top-notch grade a badge of honour.

Metropolitan

UK to help improve quality of primary education

The United Kingdom will help improve the quality of education of 16.5 million children, recruit and train 35,000 new teachers and construct 30,000 new classrooms in Bangladesh, UK's Secretary of State for International Development Andrew Mitchell announced yesterday.

Fish fry production drops in Halda, say experts

Over the last six decades, the production of fish fry in the country's largest natural fish spawning ground - Halda river - has drastically decreased due to causes both man-made and natural, said experts at a seminar yesterday.

UK minister visits MJF office

The UK Secretary of State for International Development Andrew Mitchell visited the city office of Manusher Jonno Foundation (MJF) yesterday as part of his three-day official visit to Bangladesh.

Malaysian co keen to invest Tk 1,100cr to improve three roads

A Malaysian private company has expressed its interest to invest in both railway and transport sectors in Bangladesh.

Fresh probe, speedy trial demanded

Speakers at a rally yesterday demanded the arrest, speedy trial and exemplary punishment of the killers of journalist Manik Chandra Saha.

Road crashes have gone up: PM

Prime Minister and Awami League President Sheikh Hasina yesterday expressed deep shock at the death of president of Thanchi Sadar union unit of the party Ula Ching Marma and 16 others in a road accident at Bandarban on Saturday.

Varsity teachers' retirement age extension likely

The government is likely to extend the retirement age of public university teachers from existing 60 to 65 years.

Rallies before power offices Jan 18

The National Committee to Protect Oil, Gas, Mineral Resources, Power and Ports will hold rallies in front of all power offices across the country at 11:00am on January 18, including Power Development Board in the city, says a press release.

Allocate Tk 8000cr to repair roads

The parliamentary standing committee on Ministry of Communications yesterday recommended urgent allocation of Tk 8000 crore to repair the country's dilapidated roads before the next monsoon.

More launches on three routes from Dhaka

Aiming to ease passengers' sufferings, the shipping ministry yesterday took a firm decision to end the rotation system in operating launches on three major water routes from Dhaka to the southern districts.

Non-govt primary school teachers' strike begins

Classes at 24,000 non-government registered primary schools will remain suspended for five days as teachers launched a movement yesterday demanding nationalisation of their jobs.

'Protect rights of indigenous communities'

With “Sylhet Declaration”, calling to protect the region's environment and rights of indigenous communities, the three-day convention on “Adivasis and Environment in Sylhet” ended at Shahjalal University of Science and Technology (Sust) on Saturday.

Road crashes kill 4, injure 16

Four people were killed and 16 others injured in separate road accidents in Khulna, Feni and Narail early Saturday and yesterday.

DoE order to remove earth within 30 days

The Department of Environment (DoE) yesterday sent a notice to Unique Properties Ltd asking it to remove the earth the company used to fill 2.65 lakh square feet of Meghna river within 30 days, starting from tomorrow.

Five suspects on fresh remand

Five suspects, who were arrested for their alleged involvement in the killing of six students in Aminbazar, were yesterday remanded again in order for more information to be gathered about the incidents.

Cold claims six lives in Kurigram

Six people died in Kurigram in the last 72 hours ending 6:00am on Sunday due to cold related complications, said hospital and family sources.

EC to send letters to political parties

The Election Commission (EC) will send letters to registered political parties to know about their organisational structures across the country.

Ratan, Sohel Jubo Union president, secy

Abdullah Al Kafi Ratan and Hasan Hafizur Rahman Sohel were elected president and general secretary of Bangladesh Jubo Union, the youth front of Communist Party of Bangladesh.

Porn CDs, books seized; 7 held

Detective Branch (DB) of police in a drive arrested seven people and seized a large number of porn CDs and books from their possession in New Market area of the port city yesterday.

Man shot, mugged Tk 37,000

A gang of muggers shot a man and snatched away Tk 37,000 from him in the city yesterday.

Cable-TV operator shot

Extortionists shot and injured a cable-TV operator demanding extortion from him at Merajnagar in capital's Kadamtali last night.

Sri Lankan army commander meets navy chief

The four-member Sri Lankan delegation led by Commander of Sri Lankan Army Lt Gen Jagath Jayasuriya paid a courtesy call on Chief of Naval Staff Vice Admiral Z U Ahmed at Naval Headquarters in the city's Banani yesterday.

Three arrested with firearms

Members of Rapid Action Battalion (Rab-5) arrested three people and seized two firearms from their possession during the raid of a microbus on Rajshahi-Naogaon road in front of BGB Sector Headquarters in the city yesterday.

11 laptops for RU department

Ankur International, a charitable organisation of Bangladeshi expatriates in America, donated eleven laptops to computer science and engineering (CSE) department of Rajhsahi University (RU) yesterday.

BGB distributes blankets

Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) distributed 5,230 blankets among the destitute in Sylhet, Khulna, Dinajpur, Chittagong, Dhaka, Comilla, Mymensingh, Rangamati, and Khagrachhari.

Sir Salimullah's anniversary of death today

Today is the 97th death anniversary of Nawab Sir Salimullah Bahadur, a renowned politician of the sub-continent, social worker and a leading figure behind the establishment of Dhaka University.

Obituary

M Abu Bakar Siddique, executive secretary of IBAT Trust and former treasurer of Northern University Bangladesh, passed away at Apollo Hospitals in the city on 12th January due to liver cancer at the age of 44, says a press release.

Kuntal Biswas

Kuntal Biswas, a journalist, passed away at his Satpai residence in the district on Saturday due to cardiac arrest at the age of 66.

Qulkhwani

Qulkhwani of Nurjahan Haque, wife of late magistrate and freedom fighter Majibul Haque, will be held at White Palace Community Centre at Dhanmondi in the city today.

National

9 Parbatipur railway staff suspended

Nine people including staff of Parbatipur Railway Locomotive Shed and policemen have been suspended on charge of negligence in duty as two high-powered probe bodies started investigation into allegations of widespread fuel theft from the railway store.

Kurigram farmers get hopes up

Cultivation of flood resilient paddy varieties including BRRI-51, BRRI-52, IRRI-64 and Samba-masuri has brought new hope to the farmers in flood-prone areas of the district.

Mystery shrouds death of college girl in Natore

Police recovered the body of a college girl at Shawal village in Singra upazila Friday night.

Abducted boy yet to be rescued

A 15-year-old boy, who was allegedly abducted from Jamalganj upazila about three and a half months ago, is yet to be rescued.

Mill shut for want of sugarcane

Joypurhat Sugar Mill suspended its operation on Thursday night for want of sugarcane, according to the officials concerned.

Two Pabna journos honoured

Ranesh Maitra and Anwarul Haque, two veteran journalists of Pabna, were accorded reception here on Saturday night on completion of their 60 and 50 years of active journalism.

Community radio launched in C'nawabganj

A community radio was launched in the district on Saturday with financial support from Japanese government.

Outlaw found dead in Khulna

A leader of an outlawed party was found dead at a road at Aronghata in the city yesterday.

Three youths jailed for stalking schoolgirls

Mobile courts sentenced three youths to jail on Thursday and the day before for sexually harassing schoolgirls in Jhenidah town.

10 cops hurt in clash with Jamaat, Shibir activists

At least 10 policemen including a sub-inspector of Khansama upazila were wounded in a clash with the activists of Jamaat and Chhatra Shibir yesterday.

Firearm, bullets found

Police recovered a 3.3-rifle, 277 bullets and 16 magazines from Miapara, a frontier village of Shimulbari union under Phulbari upazila yesterday morning. Police said a labourer, Abdur Rashid, while digging earth in a bamboo garden of one Abdul Latif at the village, found a wooden box at about 10.00am. The box was brought to UP chairman Md Shariful Islam who informed the police. Later, the law enforcers seized the arms and ammunition from the box. However, no one was arrested, said Md Abdul Monayem, officer in-charge of Phulbari police station.

Journo injured in attack

A journalist was beaten up allegedly by ruling party cadres in Cinema hall area in Ramgarh upazila town on Saturday morning. The injured, Mohammad Belal Hossain, 30, is a Ramgarh upazila correspondent of the daily Inqilab. Witnesses said, the AL cadres numbering 7/8 including Sofi, Suvro, Alam, Lapru Marma, and Harun, intercepted Belal at a local bazar at about 11:00am. At one stage, they beat up the journalist with iron rods and sticks, leaving him injured seriously. Later, Belal was rushed to upazila health complex and then, shifted to Chittagong Medical College and Hospital as his condition deteriorated.

7 held with arms, ammo

Members of Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) arrested seven alleged criminals along with a foreign made pistol, two magazines and three bullets from Pakshi village of Ishwardi upazila on Saturday. The arrestees, aged about 25 to 30, are Shanto Hossain, Rubel Hossain and Mahamudul Hasan of Kushthia municipality area while Hafizur Rahman of Kushthia Sadar upazila, Sumon Bishwas of Maniknagar, Dablu Hossain and Shahabul Alam of Joynagar village in Ishwardi upazila. Kazi Haniful Islam, officer in-charge of Ishwardi police station, said on secret information, a special team of Rab Nabinagar camp raided a tea stall at the village on Saturday evening and arrested the seven along with the arm and ammunition.

Satkhira medical college opens

Satkhira Medical College started its journey with 53 students on Friday. Health and Family Welfare Minister AFM Ruhal Haque inaugurated the college at its temporary campus at Maddhyakatia in the district town. Addressing the function, the minister said rejecting the traditional method of education new education system has been introduced in the medical colleges under digital system. He said the present government established four medical colleges in the country where 3500 students got chance to prosecute their studies. Led by acting principal Dr AZ Atique, among others, National Prof MR Khan and local lawmaker MA Jabbar, spoke at the programme.

Letters

Ivy's victory in NCC polls: 2011's most positive event

The year 2011 is gone and we are already in 2012. In my opinion, the most positive event in Bangladesh last year was the victory of Selina Hayat Ivy in Narayanganj City Corporation election and The Daily Star published her picture smiling with a 'V' sign in the front page of 'New Year Special 2012.' This was not an ordinary victory, it reflected the hopes and aspirations of the mass people against all odds and oppressions. She had to fight against a formidable adversary who got the blessing of the ruling party. But people liked Ivy's simple and hard working nature. Above all, she was not involved in corruption. Ivy is an exception. She was elected first when the BNP was in power and now when her own party withdrew their supports from her, she was elected again. Her father was elected in 1974 in a similar way.

BNP lawyers should join war crimes prosecution

Recently one of Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP)'s top leaders urged the government to stop the activities of International Crimes Tribunal (ICT). The BNP has made it clear that it stands against the prosecution of crimes against humanity. We cannot betray the ideals and values of our Liberation War. The crimes that were committed in 1971 must be dealt with very sincerely according to the law and this opportunity must not be lost. We are grateful to the government for starting the process. There may be some criticism, but the people of Bangladesh should trust it.

Violence against women

A report prepared by BNWLA and published in The Daily Star on 9th January 2012 has surprised me. The report was about the safety and security of women in our country. Very truly we can say that proper monitoring by the government agencies and raising awareness among the people will have positive impact. I am confident that those people who are doing the acts of violence are not unaware about it. A group of people are continuing with such acts including torture on domestic helps. Formation of a national commission to protect the rights of women will be of help. We need to realise that all of us have sisters and daughters whom we love very much. Otherwise one day our own sister or daughter may become victim of torture.

Patients being fleeced at cardiac clinics

It is a great relief that treatment of heart diseases is now done pretty well here in Dhaka. As we know, a patient with heart pain or heart related complaints is always advised to consult a cardiologist. If after investigations and angiogram, a patient is found to have blocks, one, two or more, the cardiologist is supposed to advise the patient what treatment s/he can undergo within his ability. But our cardiologists outright suggest implantation of 'ring', indicating nothing of the other method which is also widely available and he can follow. The cost of each ring is 1.20 or 1.40 lac and it is alleged that a hefty sum of commission is paid to the cardiologist by the ring-marketing coterie. Usually most of the patients need two rings and with other charges (hospital stay, medicines and cardiologists' fees, etc.) the cost of implantation of two rings come to between Tk. 3.50 and 4.00 lacs.

Implement transfer system

According to a report in The Daily Star, BRTA has been gripped with broker activities for decades; due to non-transfer of personnel at regular intervals (the same problem exists in Rajuk & DCC).

TeleTalk should reduce call charge

I am a subscriber of state-owned mobile operator, TeleTalk. I thought that it would be cheaper and the service would be much better than other operators, forgetting that for state-owned institutions nothing runs as it should. I bought the SIM with a high price. The call charge of TeleTalk is 1.33 per minute, which is much higher than other operators. It is very disappointing and objectionable. According to a report published in The Daily Star, leading telecom operator GrameenPhone is still ahead with 3.61 crore users whereas Teletalk has only 11.98 lakh subscribers. Teletalk also lost 9,000 connections.

Adopt Clean Car Standards

The timely and bold initiative taken by the US President Barack Obama to finalise Clean Car Standards, that will nearly double fuel efficiency and cut global warming emissions in half for new cars and trucks by 2025 saving consumers' billions at the gas pump, deserves appreciation and support from all the quarters. Automakers, labour leaders, security experts, and consumer groups all support the proposed standards but it's not clear why Representative Darrell Issa (R-CA) is on the attack against those working toward a clean car future?

'Marching towards abyss'

Fidel Castro's well presented full page article, titled as above, published in the editorial page of a local English daily on 11th January, is a sound scientific analysis of what is happening and the dangerous possible aftermath of the methodology for exploration of methane from underground geological shale structures by the USA. Releasing the trapped methane gas from shale by forced hydraulic fracturing of the underground shale structure is a procedure involving various risks, as described in Castro's article. This procedure uses 'benzene' and 'toluene' to be injected mixed with water for the hydraulic fracture of the shale structure and releases water contaminated with carcinogenic benzene and toluene in the water bodies.

Khaleda Zia's self-contradictory comments

In Chittagong Polo Ground Begum Zia announced that Moinuddin- Fakhruddin caretaker government was unconstitutional. In the past she said several times that the said government was illegal and that she would try the advisers if she comes to power. But at the same time, she has been continuously demanding reinstatement of the caretaker government system for the upcoming national election, though she holds the view that CG was unconstitutional as well as illegal.

Readers Respond

Here are some comments that came in response to Sunday's The Daily Star news report headlined “Pakistan learnt no lesson from 1971”

International

Assad gives amnesty for uprising crimes

Syria's President Bashar al-Assad has granted a general amnesty for all crimes committed during the 10-month uprising, state-run media report.

Santorum secures key US evangelical backing

Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum has received a powerful shot in the arm as top US evangelical leaders endorsed his White House bid ahead of a crucial South Carolina primary.

Nuke weapons are for strategic purposes

Stressing that nuclear weapons are not for fighting wars, Army Chief General V K Singh yesterday said these weapons must be used for strategic purposes only.

Survivors plucked from Italian shipwreck

A South Korean honeymoon couple were plucked from a capsized Italian liner yesterday, more than 24 hours after it was wrecked, and rescue workers were struggling to save another person trapped on board.

Suu Kyi hints at possible govt role

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi said yesterday that she did not rule out taking a government position if she wins a parliamentary seat in upcoming by-elections.

No plans for Western military action on Syria, Iran: UK

Western nations have no immediate plans for military action to stop the repression of protests in Syria or to halt Iran's nuclear programme, British Foreign Secretary William Hague said yesterday.

Libyan parties reject draft election law

Twelve moderate Islamist parties in Libya have rejected a proposed election law because it encourages voting along tribal lines and gives undue influence to the wealthy, they said late on Saturday.

Web addicts have brain changes

Web addicts have brain changes similar to those hooked on drugs or alcohol, preliminary research suggests.

Afghanistan militant leader ready for talks

The leader of Afghanistan's second-biggest insurgent group said in an interview published yesterday that he was ready for "meaningful talks" with all parties to end the decade-long war.

Blast kills 16 Shiites in Pakistan

A blast hit a Shiite Muslim religious procession killing 16 people and wounding 20 others in central Pakistan yesterday, police said, amid conflicting reasons for the explosion.

UN chief urges end to Israeli occupation

UN chief Ban Ki-moon yesterday called for an end to Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories, saying the illegal building of settlements worked against a two-state solution.

Sarkozy promises more reform after France downgrade

President Nicolas Sarkozy, in his first public reaction to France's credit rating downgrade, vowed yesterday to carry out more reforms to lead the country out of crisis.

Nigeria strikes set to resume today, govt sees more talks

Nigerian labour unions said they would resume nationwide strikes today, crippling the second largest economy in Africa, after failing to reach a compromise with the government over scrapped fuel subsidies.

US military chief to visit Israel

Israeli officials say that the U.S. military's top officer will make his first official visit to the Jewish state later this week.

China, Saudi ink energy deals

China signed energy deals with its top oil provider Saudi Arabia yesterday as its Premier Wen Jiabao visited the kingdom with tension over Iran's nuclear programme sparking fears of major oil supply disruptions.

Arts & Entertainment

Local film personalities evaluate the festival

An international film festival is always significant in terms of exchange of views among filmmakers and enthusiasts from different nations. As the 12th Dhaka International Film Festival (DIFF) is on, and a significant number of foreign delegates are here in Dhaka, some local filmmakers and activists share their views on the festival.

Selim Al Deen Festival in full swing

The four-day theatre festival to observe the fourth death anniversary of Selim Al Deen is being held at the Experimental Theatre Hall, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA). Selim Al Deen Foundation, in association with BSA, is arranging the festival that started from January 13.

Sound Art Performance by Andrea Lange at Goethe Institut

On January 11, while a fairly large crowd waited patiently for the show to begin, Andrea Lange prepared the last minute details for the sound installation or “circuit bending” as it's often called in the auditorium at the Goethe-Institut Bangladesh. The event was arranged by Goethe-Institut Bangladesh, in collaboration with Britto Arts Trust.

5th National Wall Magazine Festival wraps up

Bangladesh Deyal Patrika Parishad (Wall Magazine Council) organised the three-day 5th National Wall Magazine Festival at Bangla Academy premises with a view to explore the talents of the youth of the country. The magazines at the festival focused on local culture, traditions, history and the spirit of the Liberation War. The festival ended yesterday.

The Artist wins four prizes at Critics' Choice Awards

Silent film “The Artist” was the big winner at this year's Critics' Choice Awards, winning four prizes.

A much-welcome initiative

The reading habit is on the wane. As today's children grow up they get more absorbed in their 'electronic' lives, and there is very little in terms of entertaining, and at the same time educational, books and magazines for children in Bangladesh.

OP-ED

Violence and death on JU campus

The Jahangir-nagar University (JU) campus is again jolted by student violence. And Zubair Ahmed, a fourth year student of the English department, had to pay in blood for the factional war that erupted between the two groups of pro-government student bodies, the Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) on January 8.

Bedside manners

The much-married diva Elizabeth Taylor had an unanswerable riposte for a pesky reporter after one of her husbands, Mike Todd, went up to the Great Hollywood in the Sky. "Mike's dead," she said, "what do you want me to do, sleep alone?" Elizabeth Taylor should be formally recognised as the defining icon of contemporary Indian politics. True love has its limits. Romance is nice, but not essential to fill a bed.

This Day In History

January 16

1492
The first grammar of the Spanish language is presented to Queen Isabella I.



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