The Daily Star

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Friday, December 19, 2014


News of: Friday, 17th of February, 2012

Front Page

Trial obstruction to invite legal action

Parliament yesterday passed a resolution calling upon the government to enact a law to take action against those obstructing the ongoing war crimes trial.

US wants consensus for credible polls

The United States has expressed its opposition to extra-constitutional power grab, and urged for a political consensus on a mechanism for holding credible elections in Bangladesh.

Al Jazeera report draws flak

Rights activists and champions of the war crimes trial yesterday came down heavily on Al Jazeera television channel for broadcasting a report that said the ongoing trial would throw the country into further political instability.

EC to update voter list from Mar 10

Enumerators will begin door-to-door visits from March 10, collecting information on new voters to update the voter list for the next parliamentary elections. The elections are set for January 2014.

No weakness in economy

Finance Minister AMA Muhith yesterday in parliament said he did not see 'any weaknesses' in the country's economy.

After the killings…

When the police fired on students at Dhaka University on February 21, 1952, it was an entire Bangalee nation which was left in a state of shock. A number of young men died in the course of the firing, which was absolutely unprovoked since there had not been even a remote hint of violence from the students.

Blake goes to Grameen Bank

Women's empowerment by microcredit has helped Bangladesh reduce poverty very quickly, and ultimately discouraged extremism and radicalism in the country, a top US official has said.

HC ruling against distorted Bangla

The High Court in a suo moto rule yesterday directed the radio and television channels authorities not to use distorted Bangla or foreign languages in Bangla broadcasts.

No doctoring of stock probe report: Muhith

Finance Minister AMA Muhith has said he will step down if anyone can prove a distortion of Ibrahim Khaled's probe report on the recent stockmarket scam.

Summit seeks US help to get WB funding

Leading local power company Summit yesterday signed two agreements with international companies GE Energy and NEPC-CNEEC Consortium for building the 335 megawatt Meghnaghat dual-fuel combined cycle power plant.

South Breeze students in tough battle

Thirty-two students of South Breeze School in the city's Uttara fought hard yesterday to qualify for the divisional round of Spelling Bee.

BNP to join JS if govt offers talks

BNP is ready to join a dialogue in parliament on the formation of a non-party government, party leader Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir yesterday said, only if the government initiates the negotiation.

Holy beard on display

A strand of the holy beard of Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (peace be upon him) will be on display at Baitul Mukarram mosque in the capital today.

Food dept's Jan 27 test cancelled

The Ministry of Food and Disaster Management yesterday cancelled the January 27 written test for recruiting sub-assistant inspectors and lower division assistants in food department.

NBR goes tough on BPL taxes

The National Board of Revenue has given its Bangladesh Premier League monitoring team special powers to dig deep into all financial transactions in connection with the ongoing T20 cricket tournament.

Nizami was unwilling to probe the haul

Former industries minister Motiur Rahman Nizami was reluctant about investigation into the ten truckloads of arms haul although the seizure was made at a jetty under his ministry.

3 killed in 'gunfight' with Rab

Three suspected robbers were killed in a 'gunfight' between their cohorts and law enforcers in Companyganj upazila of the district early yesterday.

Mobiles outnumber humans this year

Mobile devices will outnumber humans this year, according to network firm Cisco's latest analysis of global mobile data traffic.

Sayedee filed false case against journos

Jamaat Nayeb-e-Ameer Delawar Hossain Sayedee sued four journalists of the Samakal in 2007 after the Bangla daily ran a report that linked him with torture and robbery incidents during the Liberation War, said Abed Khan, then editor of Samakal.

Suspects identified

Detectives have claimed to identify some suspects who could be involved in the murder of journalist couple Sagar and Runi six days ago.

Khoka gets HC bail

The High Court yesterday granted anticipatory bail for two months to former Dhaka City Corporation mayor Sadeque Hossain Khoka in a corruption case filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC).

Suicide bomber kills one in Pakistan

A suicide bomber targeted Pakistani volunteers in a pro-government militia yesterday, killing one person and wounding at least three others in an area troubled by Taliban violence, police said.

8 to die for murder of 3

A Dhaka court yesterday sentenced eight people to death including five of a family, and awarded life term imprisonment to another, for killing three villagers in Mymensingh in 2006.

China coal mine accident kills 15

Fifteen miners died and another three were injured when a tramcar derailed in a coal mine in central China, authorities said yesterday , in the latest accident to hit the dangerous industry.

Editorial

New gas reserve at Sangu

The discovery by an Australian gas exploration company Santos that a modest reserve of gas has been foundat a Sangu well in the Bay of Bengal is an elevating piece of news.

Condition of Upazila health complexes deplorable

Dismal condition of local hospitals in delivering services has been brought to light once again by a news item carried in a leading Bengali daily. The health complex in Tahirpur Upazila in Sunamganj district has not had an appointed doctor in three years. The Upazila health and family planning officer, who supervises the administrative affairs, also got transferred out six months ago. What is worse, all the ten posts for medical officers have been vacant since 2009 and there is only one trained nurse against the requirement of ten in a 31-bed health complex.

Sports

Gayle's limping adieu

Another Chris Gayle storm came to a premature end due to injury as Chittagong Kings sailed to an emphatic eight-wicket victory against Barisal Burners in the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) T20 at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur yesterday.

Sami sinks Dhaka

Pakistan paceman Mohammad Sami notched the first hattrick of the BPL as Duronto Rajshahi finished their first-leg campaign on a high note when they beat the injury-hit Dhaka Gladiators by 14 runs in an exciting encounter at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur yesterday.

Sk Russel back in goals, points

Sheikh Russel KC tasted their maiden victory in the Grameenphone Bangladesh Premier League with a comprehensive 3-0 win over Arambagh KS at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.

Abu Yusuf new Sheikh Jamal coach

Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club yesterday appointed Abu Yusuf as the team's coach after serving a show-cause notice on his predecessor Saiful Bari Titu the day before.

Renewing old rivalry

Perennial foes Abahani and Mohammedan will be renewing their rivalry for the first time this season when they face each other in their Grameenphone Bangladesh Premier League first-leg match at the Bangabandhu National Stadium today.

England ahead 2-nil

Alastair Cook hit a second successive hundred to guide England to a 20-run win over Pakistan in the second day-night international on Wednesday, giving his team a 2-0 lead in the four-match series.

Cook-ing English wins

Captain Alastair Cook's simple recipe of playing hard has exposed cracks in the Pakistan team, leaving England with an invincible 2-0 lead after their 20-run win in the second day-night match.

Wozniacki gone too

Caroline Wozniacki, playing her first match since losing her world number one ranking, crashed out of the Qatar Open on Wednesday, squandering three match points in a 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7/3) defeat to Lucie Safarova.

Local Snippets

Cox's City FC recorded a 2-1 win over Agrani Bank SC in the Premier Bank Bangladesh Championship League encounter at the Birshreshtha Shaheed Mostafa Kamal Stadium in Kamalapur yesterday.

Yuvi tweets good news

India's World Cup cricket hero Yuvraj Singh issued an upbeat health report on Thursday after undergoing chemotherapy for a malignant cancer tumour between his lungs.

Mancini denies Tevez's claims

Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini hit back at rebel striker Carlos Tevez's claims that he was 'treated like a dog' on Wednesday, claiming he probably over-indulged the Argentine.

Symonds quits cricket totally

Andrew Symonds, the former Australia all-rounder, has announced his retirement from professional cricket, citing family reasons. He hasn't played for Australia since being sent home from the World Twenty20 in England three years ago but has turned out for several domestic sides in limited-overs cricket.

Ponting wants Lee against SL today

Stand-in Australia captain Ricky Ponting says he is optimistic paceman Brett Lee will recover from a broken toe to take his place in the one-day side to face Sri Lanka on Friday.

Milan outclass Arsenal

AC Milan all but booked their place in the Champions League quarterfinals with a swashbuckling performance to thump hapless Arsenal 4-0 at the San Siro on Wednesday.

Wenger distraught

Arsene Wenger cut a distraught figure after his Arsenal side were humiliated 4-0 by AC Milan in the Champions League second round, first leg at the San Siro here Wednesday.

Zenit gain edge

Russian champions Zenit St Petersburg came from a goal down to beat Portuguese giants Benfica 3-2 in their Champions League last 16 first-leg encounter here on Wednesday.

Parma hold Juve

Juventus missed the chance to retake the lead in Serie A as Parma held them to a 0-0 draw on Wednesday.

Taxman stops Maradona

Argentina legend Diego Maradona on Wednesday said he would love to coach his former club Napoli but an ongoing wrangle with the Italian authorities over unpaid tax is preventing his return.

PSG line up Suarez move

Under pressure Liverpool striker Luis Suarez could be in line for a move to French club Paris Saint-Germain, L'Equipe newspaper said on Thursday.

Messi shirt causes a stir

Bayer Leverkusen director of sport Rudi Voeller says he is going to make two of his players sell off the Lionel Messi shirts that they obtained during the German side's 3-1 Champions League defeat to Barcelona.

Chinese refs jailed

A Chinese court on Thursday jailed four referees and an official for their roles in a corruption scandal that brought the country's football league to its knees, the state Xinhua news agency said.

Business

GE seeks stronger foothold in Bangladesh

US industrial giant General Electric (GE) aims to expand its operations in Bangladesh in energy, healthcare and transportation sectors, a senior GE official said yesterday.

Four urgent tasks for govt

The government should tackle the pressure on balance of payments, improve investment flow, end troubles in the stockmarket and curb inflation, a leading chamber said yesterday.

ADB gets new country director

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has appointed a US citizen, M Teresa Kho, as the new country director for its Bangladesh resident mission.

Zoellick to leave World Bank

World Bank president Robert Zoellick announced Wednesday that he would step down at the end of June, setting up a possible new fight over US dominance at the global development lender.

Cut oil import subsidy, move fast on VAT law

The government will have to reduce oil import subsidy and move fast on a new VAT law to reach a final agreement on the $1 billion credit from International Monetary Fund.

Blake stresses transparency for Padma bridge

The US government wants to see transparency in construction of the Padma bridge so that the shareholders of the World Bank could say their money was spent in the right way, said Robert O Blake yesterday.

Muhith asks banks to shun profiteering

Finance Minister AMA Muhith yesterday asked bank owners to focus on the interests of the country and not to be profiteers.

Yunus joins hands with Indian Institute of Management

Prof Muhammad Yunus, the father of microfinance, has found a taker for his brand of social businesses in India. He is joining hands with the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIM-A), to float a Rs 50-crore fund to seed social ventures.

Malaysian expo in May

A three-day exhibition of Malaysian products and services -- Expo Malaysia-2012 -- will kick off in the capital on May 24.

Jamuna Bank gets new DMD

Md Mozammel Hussain has recently joined Jamuna Bank as deputy managing director, the bank said in a statement.

Airtel launches caller tune sharing Facebook app

Bharti Airtel has recently launched 'Social Caller Tunes' application on Facebook, the mobile operator said in a statement yesterday.

Stocks return to the red

Stocks returned to losses yesterday as investors sold off shares amid poor corporate declarations of some commercial banks.

Metropolitan

Blake for Bangladesh's engagement

US Assistant Secretary of State Robert Blake has emphasised increased engagement of Bangladesh with Afghanistan as that would be very helpful for the ongoing reconstruction process in Afghanistan.

HC keeps 5 cops standing

The High Court yesterday kept five officials of Dhaka Metropolitan Police standing before it for around four and half hours on charge of torturing Rakib Hossain, a grandson of the country's first premier Tajuddin Ahmed.

ACC boss urges youths to fight corruption

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) Chairman Golam Rahman yesterday called upon the young generation to lead the battle against corruption.

Boi Mela: A time for children

Anyone taking a look into Amar Ekushey Boi Mela yesterday between 11:00am and 4:00pm might have mistaken it for a children's recreational centre.

'Change attitude towards challenged people’

Society's attitude towards physically challenged people has to change to inspire these people to do something better for themselves as well as for the nation, said speakers at a seminar in Rajshahi University (RU) yesterday.

Youth killed, 2 caught

Local people caught two youths red handed while they were fleeing as they had allegedly killed another youth at a housing project in Keraniganj early hours of yesterday.

Game ends in tragedy

A seemingly harmless game between two young boys ended tragically yesterday with the death of one of them.

Bid on to make country Afghanistan

The anti-liberation forces, who held on to the state power for 29 years, were out to make Bangladesh a state like Afghanistan, State Minister for Home Shamsul Hoque Tuku said yesterday.

ACC sues 27 gang members

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) yesterday lodged 10 cases against 27 members of a gang, which has forged government cheques and swindled around Tk 11 crore from the state coffer.

'Prof Razia Amin to live forever thru' her works'

Litterateur and academician Prof Razia Khan Amin will live forever through her works and extraordinary personality, speakers said at a discussion yesterday.

Officials get 7 days to return land

The High Court yesterday gave the government officials concerned seven days to return Supreme Court's 7.9-acre land, where Roads and Highways Department is situated.

'Shun politics of confrontation'

Speakers at a meeting yesterday urged political party leaders to hold dialogues on ways to hold a credible parliamentary election and shun the ongoing practice of confrontational politics, which are often detrimental to life and property.

Tarique, Mamun sued on specific charges

The money laundering case against BNP Vice Chairman Tarique Rahman and his business partner Giasuddin Al Mamun was filed on specific allegations, a prosecution witness told a Dhaka court yesterday.

Primary scholarships to be announced on Feb 20

Scholarships of the Primary Terminal Examinations 2011 will be announced on February 20 as the Directorate of Primary Education (DPE) has finalised a list of the scholarship recipients.

Worker dies in 4-storey fall

A worker was killed after falling from the fourth floor of a 13-storey under-construction building in Khulshi area of the port city Thursday night.

C'wealth mission begins Maldives tour today

A ministerial mission comprised of the foreign ministers of Australia, Bangladesh and Trinidad and Tobago will begin a three-day visit to the Maldives today.

Mohammad Abul Kashem passes away

Language Movement veteran and freedom fighter Mohammad Abul Kashem died of cancer at a city hospital yesterday at the age of 80.

Dipu Moni seeks Thai support

Foreign Minister Dipu Moni yesterday sought Thai support in Bangladesh's initiatives in becoming a member of Asia Europe Meeting (ASEM).

10 arrested over Hathazari clashes

Police arrested 10 people in a nine-hour-long raid in North Fatehabad area under Hathazari upazila in Chittagong last night in connection with the clashes that erupted between locals in the upazila on February 9 and 10.

3 held over city mugging

The Detective Branch (DB) of police on Wednesday arrested three alleged members of a gang, who shot two officials of a private organisation and robbed them of Tk 23 in front of a bank at the city's Elephant Road on February 6.

Six establishments gutted

A fire destroyed five shops, four processing lumber and one producing plastic materials, and a house, causing around Tk 40 lakh worth damage, at Avoy Mitra Ghat area in Firingi Bazar in Chittagong city early yesterday.

Construction worker dies in fall

A worker was killed on the spot after falling from the 11th floor of an under-construction building in the city's Uttara yesterday.

Two killed in Sirajganj road crash

Two motorcyclists died in a road accident on western approach road of the Bangabandhu Bridge in the sadar upazila yesterday morning.

Teenaged girl commits suicide

A teenaged girl committed suicide at Gulbagh in the city's Motijheel area yesterday being humiliated following a refusal to marry her by her lover.

Fake doctor fined in Ctg

A mobile court in a drive here yesterday fined a person Tk1 lakh for practising as a doctor without having any license of Bangladesh Medical and Dental Council (BMDC).

Appointment of RU teachers protested

The students of agronomy and agricultural extension department at Rajshahi University yesterday demanded the authorities stop appointing candidates, who have graduated on botany, as teachers in the department.

Begum Rokeya Khatun

Begum Rokeya Khatun, wife of late Dr Alhaj Yasin Ali, passed away at her residence at Ataikula village of Sathia upazila in Pabna on Sunday evening due to old age complications at the age of 95.

Qulkhwani

Qulkhwani of Sayed Iqbal Zafar, a businessman, will be held today, says a press release.

Death anniversary

Today is the ninth death anniversary of Prof Mohamm-ad Yunus Shikder, former chairman of Bangladesh Madrasa Education Board and former principal of Govt Madrasa-e-Alia, says a press release.

National

Thakurgaon docs struggle to cope with child patients

Doctors at Thakurgaon Sadar Hospital are struggling to cope with the child patients admitted to the hospital with diarrhoea and cold related diseases including pneumonia.

Charge-sheet after 10 years

Charge-sheet in the Swapon Joarder murder case was submitted to the Senior Judicial Magistrate's Court yesterday evening, 10 years into the killing of the district Jubo League chief.

Two main accused arrested

Police arrested two main accused in the Rajshahi College student Saad murder case from Sher-e-Bangla Nagar in the capital city yesterday.

27 including 23 children rescued from brick kiln

The Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) yesterday rescued 27 labourers including 23 children from a brickfield in Bangla Bazar area under Sadar upazila of the district.

Farmers worried as aman price falls below production cost

Price of aman paddy has slided below production cost in the district much to the disappointment and worry of the farmers.

Execution of verdict demanded

Freedom fighters and leaders and activists of different socio-cultural and political organisations yesterday demanded early execution of the verdict in the case for killing Kazi Aref Ahmed, one of the key organisers of the Liberation War and founder of the Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JSD).

Work orders finally cancelled

Local Government and Engineering Department (LGED) cancelled work orders of two contractors for not completing their road construction work in Haripur upazila under the district even after extension of the time limit several times during last three years.

Nahim of AL, Muhitul of BNP submit nominations

Nahim Razzaq of Awami League and Muhitul Goni of BNP yesterday submitted their nomination papers to contest the Shariatpur-3 by-polls slated for March 15.

Man gets life for wife murder

A court here on Wednesday convicted a man and awarded him life imprisonment for killing his wife.

Campaign to save tigers

Wildlife Trust of Bangladesh (WTB) will launch a campaign today to raise awareness among the mass people regarding the aims and objectives of The Sundarbans Tiger Project. Vice Chancellor of Dhaka University Prof AAMS Arefin Siddique Arefin Siddique will inaugurate the daylong programme on the campus of Khulna University (KU). The programme includes a colourful rally, painting competition, discussion meeting and cultural function participated by country's eminent artistes. WTB has taken up a five-year long campaign to create awareness among the people on how to save the tigers in the world's largest mangrove forest, said Anwarul Islam, chief executive of WTB.

Jatka seized in Munshiganj

Coastguard members seized 30 maunds of jatka (hilsa fry) from a launch at Dhaleswari River in Sadar upazila yesterday morning. Pagla Coastguard camp commander Ferdous Ahmed said, a team raided the Dhaka-bound MV Bandhan coming from Bhola and seized the jatka in the early morning. None was arrested in this connection. Later, the seized jatka was dumped under the earth in presence of Sadar Upazila Fisheries Officer MA Azad. The government banned catching of jatka from February 1 to May 31.

Phone exchange looted

A gang of armed robbers looted divisional telephone exchange office in the district town early Wednesday. The gang took away Tk 3000 in cash, two bicycles and other valuables from the employees of the exchange. Sources said the masked robbers numbering 10/12 swooped on the exchange office at around 4am and took senior telephone operators Sima Rani Dash, Rabeya Khatun, Line man Mujibur Rahman and guard Abdur Razzak hostage at gunpoint. Later, they damaged revenue section, optical mask room, rectifier room and furniture and some important documents of the office.

Indian liquor seized

Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) members recovered 320 bottles of Indian liquor worth Tk 4.80 lakh at Dashghar near Lauergarh border camp in Tahirpur upazila early Wednesday. BGB-8 camp officer Major Golam Kibria said on secret information a patrol team led by Habildar Mustak Ahmed conducted a drive in the area at around 3am recovered the Indian liquor in abandoned condition. Another report from Sylhet adds: Police arrested a drug peddler along with 244 bottles of Indian liquor at Anjagram village in Jaintapur upazila on Tuesday midnight. The arrestee was identified as Russell Ahmed, 24, son of Shahabuddin of Kandigram village in the upazila.

Letters

Killers should be arrested

Sagar Sarowar and Mehrun Runi, a journalist couple, were brutally murdered at their residence on February 11, 2012. Words are failing me to express my deep shock and agony at this fiendish incident. One has to gasp with horror and disbelief, it is so macabre. We just cannot take it anymore; it seems that the whole country has become a slaughter house.

Qualities of sewer pipes and earth-filling on dug roads

Dhaka WASA has taken a project to lay sewer pipes in Dhanmondi Residential Area and in some parts of Mirpur Road. We appreciate the work taken up at the right time of the year.

Whitney Houston's untimely death

The American singer and actress Whitney Houston is no more. Houston, one of the most celebrated female singers, died on February 12, 2012 in Los Angeles at the age of only 48. Having won six Grammy Awards herself, Whitney Houston died Saturday on the eve of the Grammy Awards ceremony. During her brief life Whitney sang a number of hit songs like “I will always love you" and "Saving all my love for you." Her death is a loss of a highly talented singer and performer.

Border killings should stopped

Recently, the BSF Chief U K Bansal said that it would not be possible to put a total stop to the firing along the India-Bangladesh border, as his troops must take steps to stop the offenders.

Promotion spree of civil servants

The government has promoted 649 officers to the ranks of additional secretary, joint secretary and deputy secretary though there are no vacant posts. According to the DS report, there are about 1,500 deputy secretaries against 830 approved posts, 500 joint secretaries against 250 posts and 148 additional secretaries against 108 approved posts.

Cyber war and our fighters

More than 20,000 Indian websites have been hacked by the Bangladeshi hackers over the last few days which include important government and financial sites. The website of the BSF was completely damaged in this process.

Theft at Dhaka airport

Recently, I visited Singapore and upon reaching the luggage hall of arrival lounge I found my bag cut and damaged on two sides and my lock disappeared. I believe this happened in Dhaka and not in Singapore airport, as the security system there is very strong and such burglary is unthinkable. About eighty percent of my belongings was stolen and I had to buy all the necessary items without which I could not manage to stay there. Therefore, I would request the authorities concerned through your esteemed daily, to look into the matter very seriously so that this type of unwanted burglary stops permanently at our airports and passengers can reach their destination with their necessary belongings.

LGRD minister's indiscreet comments

LGRD minister Syed Ashraful Islam is widely known to be a sober, polite, soft-spoken and wise politician. But recently his comments on different issues were really surprising, confusing and disappointing.

Online Voices

Minister pulls for extortion

International

China opposes forced regime change in Syria

Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Zhai Jun said Beijing opposed armed intervention and forced "regime change" in Syria, a day before he heads to Damascus to push for an end to the conflict there.

Maldives' new president agrees to early elections

Maldivian President Mohamed Waheed yesterday agreed to demands for early elections, after taking power last week in what his ousted predecessor described as a coup d'etat.

Iran eyes talks after nuclear boasts

Iran yesterday expressed hopes of reviving moribund talks with world powers, a day after the Islamic republic unveiled what it described as major progress in its controversial nuclear programme.

US drones kill at least 13 in Pakistan

Two US drone attacks struck Islamist militants in Pakistan's tribal badlands yesterday, killing at least 13 fighters in North Waziristan near the Afghan border, officials said.

India, Nepal agree on Water, power sharing deals

Giving a fresh boost to bilateral cooperation in water resources and power sectors, India and Nepal on Wednesday agreed on a slew of decisions relating to projects on common rivers and cross-border electricity trade.

'Afghanistan can't be stable without drugs crackdown'

Afghanistan cannot be stable while its economy depends so heavily on the drugs trade, and its allies must step up the fight to combat the industry, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon said yesterday.

Kabul involved in US-Taliban talks: Karzai

The Afghan government is part of a three-way peace dialogue involving the US and the Taliban, President Hamid Karzai reportedly said, despite the militia's denunciation of his "puppet regime".

Thailand boosts security after blasts

Tourist magnet Thailand has tightened security after a failed bomb plot in Bangkok, officials said yesterday, as Israel accused regional foe Iran of unleashing a terror campaign in world capitals.

Sun journos mull legal action against owners

Journalists from Rupert Murdoch's The Sun have contacted a trade union to discuss suing the British tabloid's owners, the union said, after five staff members were arrested in a police bribery probe.

8 Palestinian children Killed

At least eight Palestinian children were killed in a collision between a school bus and an Israeli truck on a road in the West Bank, police said yesterday.

Libya militias out of control

Armed militias are threatening the security and stability of Libya, Amnesty International warned yesterday.

Maldives sets deadline for Nasheed's party

Maldivian President Mohamed Waheed yesterday set his ousted predecessor's party a four-day ultimatum to join the government in a national unity coalition to end an eruption of political unrest.

Afghan, Iranian leaders arrive in Pakistan for summit

Pakistan yesterday welcomed the leaders of Afghanistan and Iran for a regional summit at a key juncture in peace efforts with the Taliban and amid rising tensions between Tehran and Israel.

Arts & Entertainment

When eyes sparkle, diamonds gleam...

I wasn't sure which of the two were shining brighter her solitaire diamond nose pin or her sparkling eyes as she spoke excitedly about her life in classical music. At 83, Vidushi Girija Devi shows no signs of slowing down in her pursuit of performing classical music as she continues to captivate audiences the world over. She had come to perform for the first time in Dhaka. I was meeting her at an informal setting, to get to know more of her fascinating decades of journeying through the music world.

AZIZUL HAKIM @ DS CAFE

Azizul Hakim - once active on theatre with Aranyak - began his journey on television with a small role in the 80s. He earned bigger roles as his career grew more dynamic, dominating the TV screen throughout the 90s. After all these years, Azizul Hakim continues to perform both on TV and the silver screen, along with stints as a director. The veteran artiste recently chatted with The Daily Star (TDS) and his fans at DS Cafe.

Manipuri Theatre's Kohe Birangana and Shree Krishna Kirtan go to India

Manipuri Theatre will hold two shows of its productions “Kohe Birangana” and “Shree Krishna Kirtan” at the International Manipuri Literature and Cultural Festival to be held in Guwahati, Assam in India. The Bangladeshi troupe will hold the shows on February 18 and 19. Moreover, the troupe will hold a couple of more shows of the plays in other places in Assam and Tripura during its ten-day tour.

Ishita turns author

Popular TV actress Ishita is set to make her debut as an author at this year's Ekushey book fair. Her first book “Nirobe” has been published by Shobdo-Shilpo Prokashoni.

Book launch and documentary screening at Gallery Chitrak

A book titled “Mro” was launched on February 13 at Gallery Chitrak in Dhanmondi. The book focuses on Kanak Chanpa Chakma's creative life and various aspects of the Mro community. For the last 17 years, Kanak Chanpa has been working on the Mro community. She has drawn 166 paintings on the community which focused on their lifestyle, religions, cultivation practices, culture and tradition. The book has been jointly published by Gallery Chitrak and Arzo Chalchitra.

OP-ED

Quantum mechanics of a double murder

The grisly murder of a journalist couple last Friday only further intensified the horror of life in this city punctuated by what we can call psychopathic peekaboo. A hardworking man returned home at 2:00 am after a long day's work and then death popped out on him when it was least expected. The killers also killed his wife, but spared the couple's 5-year-old only child. God knows, this child would die countless times for the rest of his life haunted by the horrible images of his dead and brutalised parents flashing before his eyes.

Come on, China, buy our stuff

The first time I visited China, in 2005, an American businessman living there told me that the country was so huge and was changing so fast that everything you heard about it was true, and so was the opposite. That still seems to be the case. China is the fastest-growing consumer market in the world, and American companies have made billions there. At the same time, Chinese consumers aren't spending nearly as much as American companies had hoped. China has simultaneously become the greatest boon and the biggest disappointment.

Come-alive Kalidas

The classical Indian playwright and poet Mahakavi Kalidas used to deliver wise words drawing on stupid incidents. In one such narrative, he found himself sawing through the branch of a tree he was seated on. Wise men passing him by noticed it and drew Kalidas' attention to a blunder he was about to commit. He was using the saw at the wrong end of the branch risking a fatal fall.

Syrian conundrum

One does not need Einstein's IQ to understand how the American Empire has been destabilising the world for the last sixty-odd years. The so-called champion of democracy, freedom and human rights, the US had no qualms about killing more than a million innocent civilians across the world since Hiroshima, albeit in the name of preserving the elusive freedom and democracy.

Six signs you are underpaid

This is a subject writers know all about. "My psychologist asked me if I was ambivalent. I replied, well, yes and no. Ha ha ha!" Huh? Nobody laughed. I tried again. "The workers at the mint went on strike today. They want to make less money. Get it? LESS money!" Huh? Still nobody laughed. Which was a surprise, because the jokes were ancient and the hour was late.

This Day In History

February 17

1871
The victorious Prussian Army parades though Paris, France after the end of the Siege of Paris during the Franco-Prussian War.

StarTech

The piracy of online privacy

Online privacy doesn't exist. It was lost years ago. And not only was it taken, we've all already gotten used to it. Loss of privacy is a fundamental tradeoff at the very core of social networking. Our privacy has been taken in service of the social tools we so crave and suddenly cannot live without. If not for the piracy of privacy, Facebook wouldn't exist. Nor would Twitter. Nor even would Gmail, Foursquare, Groupon, Zynga, etc.

Apple testing smaller screen tablet: WSJ

Apple is testing a tablet computer with a smaller screen than the hot-selling iPad, The Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday.

Mobile devices to outnumber people on planet this year

Smartphones and tablets. It appears that we can't get enough of them. According to the latest research by network firm Cisco, at some point this year there will be more mobile devices on the planet than humans. So that'll be about 7 billion then.

Softexpo 2012 kicks off Feb 22

All is set for the SoftExpo 2012, the largest exposition of software and ICT enabled services (ITES), to be held on February 22-26 in the capital.



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