News of: Wednesday, 29th of February, 2012
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Bangladesh will start receiving 250 megawatts of electricity from India by June next year at a reasonable price under a purchase agreement signed in New Delhi yesterday.
Five people were killed in "shootouts" with Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) in Bagerhat and Bogra districts yesterday.
Salinity will creep into Manikganj, Kushtia, Goalanda, Bhairab and beyond if India implements its controversial river-linking project.
Bangladesh needs up to 1.5 million new jobs each year for the next 20 years to accelerate economic growth, says the World Bank.
A two-day art camp titled “Chhobir Haat” kicked off yesterday in the Fine Arts Institute of Chittagong University (CU) with a slogan Chaluk Lagatar Utsab (Let the festivity continue).
US Ambassador to Bangladesh Dan Mozena here yesterday endorsed Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's proposal for appointing Prof Dr Muhammad Yunus the World Bank chief.
The High Court yesterday asked the government to explain within two weeks why it should not be directed to find out the motive for the murder of journalist couple Sagar Sarowar and Meherun Runi and to bring the killers to justice.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said the present government did not file any case against journalists as it did not believe in harassing media people.
The government will resume giving gas connections to industrial units in a month or two, said prime minister's energy adviser Towfiq-e-Elahi yesterday.
While the communications minister at a function yesterday identified reckless driving as one of the major reasons behind road accidents, the shipping minister defended the drivers saying they were not solely responsible.
Leaders of the ruling Awami League-led 14-party combine yesterday claimed the unity of the alliance was intact and would remain so until the war crimes trial was completed.
Unidentified assailants shot a local BNP leader dead at Bhashantek of Kafrul in the capital yesterday evening.
Mobarok Hossain Moba, one of the main accused in the killing of Narsingdi municipal mayor Lokman Hossain, has been arrested in Abu Dhabi in United Arab Emirates.
The Maldivian government has selected former president of the Human Rights Commission Ahmed Saleem for the post of Saarc secretary general.
A hearing of the CHT Land Dispute Resolution Commission in its Khagrachhari district town office yesterday was suspended due to a quorum crisis as the representatives of hill people in the commission were absent.
Polls to bifurcated Dhaka City Corporation (DCC) will now be held within May 28 as parliament yesterday passed a bill extending the time frame for holding the polls by 90 days.
The Department of Environment (DoE) yesterday realised Tk 40 lakh in fine from a dyeing factory at Simrail in Narayanganj for discharging untreated liquid waste into the river Shitalakhya.
Neanderthals were already on the verge of extinction in Europe by the time modern humans arrived on the scene, a study suggests.
Japan's tsunami-hit Fukushima power plant remains fragile nearly a year after it suffered multiple meltdowns, its chief said yesterday, with makeshift equipment - some mended with tape - keeping crucial systems running.
We thank Speaker Abdul Hamid for his cautionary words against exchange of vituperative remarks beyond all norms of decency in parliament. In a book launching programme at the parliament's media centre on Sunday, he strongly opposed the trend of exchanging expletives. Referring to an AL lawmaker's personal attack on the opposition leader and her sons, he cautioned that a culture of vitriol can only diminish the sanctity of the parliament. He also called upon all members to scrupulously abide by the rules of procedures while conducting themselves in parliament.
Former advisor Syed Manzoor-e-Elahi while addressing a reunion of St Xavier's College (Calcutta) Alumni Association, Bangladesh Chapter expressed his concern over the gradual decline of values in society. Good schooling he said was the key factor to imbibe good values among the young.
Dhaka Gladiators made it to the final of the BPL T20 last evening with a 9-run win over Khulna Royal Bengals in the pulsating second semifinal. A packed Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium backed the Dhaka team like a home team is usually supported, though for the first time in the competition.
A big-hitting masterclass from Ahmed Shehzad shot the unlikely semifinalists Barisal Burners in the final of the BPL T20 yesterday. They beat favourites Duronto Rajshahi by eight wickets, with ridiculous ease.
The latest twist in a long tale of controversy in the ongoing Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) was the outcome of a midnight drama the name of which can be best described as 'Exit Chittagong, Enter Barisal'.
Mushfiqur Rahim yesterday blasted the organising capacity of the BPL after the fiasco over the semifinal opponents of Duronto Rajshahi emerged only few hours before the game.
Virat Kohli blasted an unbeaten 133 off just 86 balls as India's stunning seven-wicket bonus point victory over Sri Lanka kept them alive in the tri one-day series in Hobart on Tuesday.
A 14-member national women's kabaddi team will leave for India today to take part in the inaugural Women's World Cup to be held in the Eastern Indian state of Bihar from March 1 to 4.
Ross Taylor will captain New Zealand in the first Test against South Africa after impressing the medical staff with his recovery from a calf injury. But his side will be without the batsman Dean Brownlie, who needs more time to get over a fractured finger he sustained during the second ODI against Zimbabwe.
Defending champions Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club's bad-patch continued in the Grameenphone Premier League as minnows Arambagh KS stunned them 3-0 in their fourth encounter at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.
England bowlers kept their nerves in the final overs to pull off a sensational five-run win over Pakistan in the third and final Twenty20 here on Monday to take the series 2-1.
England dropped Eoin Morgan from their Test squad for the tour of Sri Lanka following the former Ireland batsman's dismal series against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Fit-again paceman James Pattinson was Tuesday included in Australia's 13-man squad for the remainder of the one-day tri-series against Sri Lanka and India.
Shadharan Bima KS beat Dipali Jubo Sangha 2-0 in their match of the Destiny Group Dhaka Metropolis 2nd Division Football League at the Birshreshtha Mostafa Kamal Stadium in Kamalapur yesterday. Fazlul Haque scored both the goals for the winning side.
Germany host France in a pre-Euro 2012 friendly on Wednesday with the Germans missing several first-choice stars and French coach Laurent Blanc relishing playing one of Europe's top teams.
Former World Cup semifinalists South Korea take on Kuwait on Wednesday in a crucial home clash, seeking to avoid becoming the highest-profile casualty of Asian qualifying for Brazil 2014.
Italy coach Cesare Prandelli warned Mario Balotelli on Monday that unless the striker stopped getting into disciplinary trouble he risked being left out of their Euro 2012 squad.
Europe's leading soccer clubs hailed a 'major breakthrough' on Tuesday after agreeing with UEFA to drop the unpopular August date for international friendlies.
AC Milan defender Philippe Mexes on Monday picked up a three match ban for punching Juventus's Marco Borriello in Saturday's ill-tempered 1-1 draw.
Spurs midfielder Scott Parker collected his second award in a year on Monday when he was voted England player of the year by the national side's fans.
Martin Skrtel picked up his second piece of silverware in two days on Monday as the Liverpool central defender was named Slovakian player of the year.
England striker Darren Bent looks set to miss out on Euro 2012 after suffering ruptured ankle ligaments, his club Aston Villa reported on Monday.
Telecoms operators need wider spectrum distribution to take mobile health services to the masses, said Telenor President and Chief Executive Jon Fredrik Baksaas yesterday.
Prices of basic commodities such as cooking oil and lentil continue an upward trend although rice prices have steadied and are expected to drop further.
A noted economist yesterday urged the government to take unpopular decisions to save the wobbly economy from a crash.
The Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday fined six individuals and four institutions Tk 1 lakh each for breaching securities rules.
The National Board of Revenue (NBR) has set up an integrity unit in an effort to make its staff accountable to taxpayers and make the organisation graft-free.
The foreign currency reserve crossed the $10 billion mark for the first time in four months.
Germany entrepreneurs want to invest in energy, transportation and infrastructure as they have experience in those sectors, said German Ambassador to Bangladesh Holger Michael on Monday.
The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, is helping Bangladesh simplify and standardise municipal business regulations of small and medium enterprises.
MA Rashid has been elected as the chairman of People's Insurance Company recently, the company said in a statement yesterday.
Emirates announced plans to remove commission for its travel agents which will be effective from tomorrow in Bangladesh, the airliner said in a statement yesterday.
Jatiyatabader Orthonity O Onnannya (Economics of
Nationalism & Others)
by Muzaffer Ahmed
Tranjiter Tanaporen(Transit Quandary)
by Asjadul Kibria
Indian Border Security Force (BSF) and Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) will begin a joint patrol across the border from the first week of March to check border killings and torture by BSF, smuggling and illegal entry.
The body of a middle aged man, whom muggers made unconscious and snatched his CNG auto-rickshaw on Saturday night, was identified at Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH) yesterday.
Bangladesh's diplomacy maintains 50-year-old practices and is still not oriented to migrant workers, Prime Minister's Foreign Affairs Adviser Dr Gawher Rizvi said at a dialogue yesterday.
Mayor of Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) Manjur Alam urged the British Council authorities to decrease the IELTS examination fee in Bangladesh.
Speakers at a discussion yesterday urged the government to immediately formulate a law to protect victims and witnesses as its lack has slowed down International Crimes Trial (ICT) proceedings.
Six people were killed and eight others, including two police personnel, injured in separate road accidents in Sylhet, Chittagong, Jhenidah and Natore on Monday and yesterday.
The longstanding land dispute in the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) should be resolved based on equity, said National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) chairman Prof Mizanur Rahman yesterday.
The UK will tighten its immigration policy soon in a bid to stop illegal migration from all over the world, the British High Commissioner to Bangladesh said here yesterday.
Bangladesh was hopeful of getting justice from a UN body's verdict, scheduled for March 14, concerning the delimitation of maritime boundary with Myanmar in the Bay of Bengal, Foreign Minister Dipu Moni said yesterday.
A month-long festival on the Bangla Academy premises for booklovers, authors, and publishers will end with the fall of curtain on Amar Ekushey Boi Mela in the evening today.
The Bangladeshi community in Toronto gathered at the Bangladesh Center on Sunday to commemorate the third anniversary of the BDR carnage in memory of the military officers murdered on February 25-26, 2009 in a mutiny.
The ruling Awami League yesterday put a series of questions to Leader of the Opposition and BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia about the 2009 BDR mutiny, inquiring where she had been during the mutiny and why she had left her cantonment house half an hour before it broke out.
Partisan journalism and lack of security of the journalists are the major threats to quality journalism flourishing in Bangladesh, said International Press Institute (IPI) Executive Director Alison Bethel McKenzie yesterday.
A parliamentary body yesterday asked the industries ministry to take stern actions against the organisations who are threatening the Bangladesh Standard and Testing Institute (BSTI) officials for conducting drives against food adulteration.
A Dhaka court yesterday granted bail to Dr Golam Haider Rasul, a policymaker of banned militant Islamist organisation Hizb-ut-Tahrir Bangladesh, in a case filed for his alleged involvement with anti-state activities.
The outgoing Thai Ambassador to Bangladesh, Tasanawadee Miancharoen paid a courtesy call on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at her office yesterday.
A young worker was killed at a Sitakunda ship breaking yard allegedly after falling from a ship while working.
The first day of 48-hour strike called by Sector Corporation Sramik Karmachari Federation Samannaya Parishad passed off peacefully in the district yesterday.
Workers of a garments factory blocked Dhaka-Mymensingh highway for half-an-hour following the death of a co-worker in Signboard area in Sadar upazila yesterday morning.
Election of the 15-member executive committee of Rajshahi University Teachers Association (Ruta) will be held today.
An old man was killed as a train hit him in Kawgaon area under Dinajpur Sadar upazila yesterday.
Alamgir Kumkum, a noted filmmaker and founding president of Bangabandhu Sangskritik Jote, was laid to eternal rest at Banani graveyard in the city yesterday.
The High Court yesterday deferred till March 7 the hearing on a rule it issued earlier against Liberal Democratic Party chief Col (Retd) Oli Ahmed on charge of starting construction of a resort on the Cox's Bazar beach in violation of environmental laws.
The International Crimes Tribunal (ICT) yesterday adjourned the hearing on four separate petitions of BNP lawmaker Salauddin Quader Chowdhury till Sunday next week.
Ruling Awami League (AL) will hold a joint meeting with the party's key leaders, lawmakers, district council administrators of the city and all of its adjacent districts today to make them alert about main opposition BNP's any possible 'evil plan' in the name of March 12 grand rally in the capital.
A defeated candidate of the election of Dhaka Bar Association yesterday appealed to the chief election commissioner to cancel the results bringing charges of irregularities against him in counting votes.
A college student was crushed under the wheels of a train at Arabpur in Jessore town on Monday night.
Police arrested a person and seized 600 pieces of Yaba tablets from his possession at Kalamia Bazar in the port city on Monday night.
Chittagong University (CU) authorities rescued a barking deer on the campus yesterday.
Family members yesterday demanded punishment to the killers of Masud bin Habib and Mujahidul Islam.
Police, in separate drives, arrested four persons and recovered four kilograms of cannabis and 60 bottles of locally prepared contraband liquor in the port city.
Today is the 28th death anniversary of Md Mushtaque, former chief editor of Asian Television Services and former chief of news of Bangladesh Television and Radio Bangladesh.
Qulkhwani of Language Movement hero and also a neuro surgeon Col Mazed Box will be held on March 2 after Asr prayers at his Dhanmondi residence at Road No. 32, House No. 22 in the city.
Qulkhwani of Syed Gazanfar Ally Tinku will be held at his residence at House No #18, Mymensingh Road near Bishwa Sahitya Kendra after Asr prayers today.
Bumper yield of turmeric has turned into a burden for growers in different areas as they are facing serious losses due to unusual price fall of the popular price.
A visitor could easily mistake it to be a road blockade programme aimed at pressing for some demands as a huge crowd gathered in front of Agrani Bank in Sadullapur upazila under the district, causing traffic jam on Sadullapur--Gaibandha road.
Workers at seven state-owned jute mills in Khulna-Jessore industrial belt and four sugar mills in Thakurgaon, Panchagarh and Natore began a 48- hour work stoppage from 6:00am yesterday to press home their demand for implementation of the recommendation of National Wages and Productivity Commission with effect from July 1, 2009.
People of several areas in Jamalpur town are badly suffering for want of pure drinking water as water supplied by the municipality is too dirty and stinky for use.
A mobile court fined three employees of a brick kiln Tk 10,000 on charge of illegally burning woods at the kiln at Kuliada village in Sadar upazila on Monday.
Ten people were injured as police went into action to free invigilators from the SSC examinees' confinement at Panchagarh Girls' High School centre yesterday.
At least ten people, including a policeman were injured during a clash between the activists of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) and Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal (JCD) at Begum Rokeya University here yesterday.
The law enforcers seized two firearms and eight bullets in Jessore and Chapainawabganj on Sunday and Monday.
Members of Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) seized Indian clothes worth Tk four crore from a truck in Goalkhali area under Khalishpur Police Station of the city on Monday and arrested a man in this connection. The arrestee is Shahin Sattar Biswas, 40, son of late Halim Biswas of Jhalakati district, said Md Waliuzzaman, deputy assistant director of Rab-6. Acting on a tip-off, a special team of Rab-6 led by ASP Rezaul Karim raided the area at about 6:30am and arrested Shahin along with the clothes. However, the trucker managed to flee, said Waliuzzaman. The seized clothes included sarees.
Celebrating Life programme of The Daily Star will be held on the Khulna University (KU) campus tomorrow. Vice Chancellor Prof Md Saifuddin Shah will inaugurate the programme as chief guest. The programme includes open concert at 4:00pm and a film show at 6:30pm. Supported by Standard Chartered Bank, the concert and film show will be held also in cooperation with the KU movie club.
Police arrested two activists of Islami Chhatra Shibir from a students' mess at Baluchar village in Chatmohar upazila on Monday night. The arrestees are Robiul Islam, 25, president of Shibir Chatmohar upazila unit, and Delwar Hossain. Md Habibul Islam, officer in-charge of Chatmohar Police Station, said the law enforcers arrested the duo while they were distributing leaflets containing anti-government statement at the mess.
A young man was electrocuted in Belkuchi upazila on Monday evening. The deceased is Selim Sheikh, 28, son of Dulal Sheikh of Subarnasara village. Locals said when Selim climbed a banyan tree, he came in contact with a live electric wire and fell to the ground. He was rushed to upazila health complex where the doctors declared him dead.
Recently Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina requested the visiting European Union (EU) delegation to recommend Professor Yunus as the next president of the World Bank (WB). She has also explained the logic behind her request that Yunus' vast experience is a valuable asset that the WB can use for the betterment of the world. She also praised Yunus for his outstanding contribution in alleviating poverty through micro credit activities.
We are assailed by depressing and horrifying news almost every day; there seems no respite for us. I try my best to find something to make me joyous and express it through my writing, but that too in vain.
The 21st February, the Martyrs' Day, also International Mother Language Day, was observed with due respect. To mark the day, several linguists, litterateurs, academicians, artists and politicians appeared in Dhaka's nearly two dozen television stations. Also the field reporters broadcast live interviews of the members of the public taking part in the solemn celebration throughout the day.
Language, an important element of culture, is God's best blessing. God loves unity in diversity so He has bestowed ankind with diverse languages. But the Pakistani regime tried to devour our language. As a self-respecting nation, we were able to save our language through a bloody movement which is a unique example in the world and hence UNESCO's recognition of 21st February as the International Mother Language Day.
I am writing this letter to protest the burning of the Holy Quran on 20.02.12 by the US troops in Afghanistan. It is very shameful to watch such news in the international media.
Here are some comments that came in response to Tuesday's The Daily Star news report headlined “Controversies can be costly”
Mid-ranking Pakistani army officials may have known that Osama Bin Laden had a safe house in Pakistan, leaked material appears to indicate.
Syrian forces shelled opposition strongholds, killing at least 25 people, yesterday and a wounded British photographer was smuggled out of Homs into neighboring Lebanon.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu yesterday warned that a nuclear-armed Iran would control the major Gulf oil producers, send energy prices soaring, and "choke" the global economy.
Mitt Romney faces a day of reckoning today when Michigan votes to either grant him a big victory in the Republican presidential nomination battle or hand him a humiliating defeat.
It was a newspaper article that just months ago, Myanmar's draconian state censors never would have approved.
Human Rights Watch yesterday called for the release of hundreds of Bahraini pro-democracy activists arrested after last year's uprising and for all charges against them to be dropped.
A court in Thailand yesterday sentenced one of the kingdom's most controversial political figures, media mogul Sondhi Limthongkul, to 20 years in prison for corporate fraud.
Prime Minister Vladimir Putin says he doesn't fear his enemies, a day after the state television reported security forces had foiled a plot to assassinate him.
Sectarian gunmen ambushed a bus yesterday, killing 18 Shia Muslims in a usually peaceful region of northern Pakistan that neighbours the former Taliban stronghold of Swat, officials said.
South Korea's parliament has passed a resolution demanding that China stops the repatriation of North Korean refugees.
An estimated 57 per cent votes were yesterday cast in the sixth and penultimate phase of Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls in 68 seats across 13 districts, popularly known as the Jat land, where voting was by and large peaceful.
An explosion at a chemical factory in northern China has killed at least 13 people, state officials said.
Nearly six months after undergoing a surgery abroad, Congress president Sonia Gandhi has travelled out of the country for a "routine check up" in connection with the treatment for her undisclosed illness.
Vietnam's communist party is debating how to tackle corrupt officials and reverse a "serious" moral decline among rank and file members in order to regain people's trust, state media reported yesterday.
Indian-Americans would overwhelmingly vote for US President Barack Obama in the November presidential elections, while Mitt Romney has been named as favourite among the Republican presidential candidates, according to a latest opinion poll.
Arts & Entertainment
Dr. Enamul Haque, Historian & Archaeologist
Ekush was deciding factor of our identity. It is the symbol of Bengali nationalism and secularism. Ekush is a constant source of inspiration. Ekush is our harvest of dreams and hopes.
“The Daily Star Spelling Bee Powered by Horlicks” has begun. 'Spelling Bee' is an internationally followed contest where students from different classes and mediums take part. To boost Bangladeshi students' spelling skills, web portal Champs21 has organised the first 'Spelling Bee' in the country.
It was a much-anticipated evening. The music of distant North East India was to reverberate in Delhi and that too in memory of legendary lyricist, musician and singer late Dr. Bhupen Hazarika. The singers and musicians from Assam, Nagaland and Manipur did not disappoint.
The students of Natyakala Department of Jatiyo Kobi Kazi Nazrul Islam University (JKKNIU) in Trishal staged “Kabor”, a one-act play about the Language Movement, written by Munier Chowdhury. The play was staged to mark International Mother Language Day.
“A Separation" won the Oscar for best foreign language film on Sunday, becoming the first Iranian movie to win the honour.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's suggestion that Muhammad Yunus be considered for the presidency of the World Bank is certainly food for thought. And that in the sense that the time has perhaps arrived when some changes need to be brought about in the operational structure of the two Bretton Woods institutions. The argument is yet there, one propounded rather intensely by those familiar with the workings of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, that the old convention of the former being led by Washington and the latter by Europe cannot easily be set aside. They are of course right. It is, when you consider things from the perspective of history, truly hard to transform well-entrenched images and practices. But, again from the perspective of history, there is always a time when change becomes necessary.
There is only one rational response to the classic airport offer: Buy one, save 10%; buy two, save 20%; buy three, save 40%. Buy nothing, save 100%.
In December 2010, New York based Human Rights Watch in a report described the Indian border guards as a "trigger-happy" force and documented hundreds of extrajudicial killings, arbitrary detention, torture, and ill-treatment by the BSF.
Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) holds tremendous opportunity for Bangladesh as the country seeks ways to ensure power supply for the people. The current international price (I should say North American market price) for natural gas is hovering around $2.5-$4 per thousand cubic feet, a cheap commodity indeed when one considers the highly volatile and pricy energy sector.
Education is rightly dubbed as the backbone of a nation. It is a fundamental right of every citizen. In Article 17 of the Constitution, it is said that the state shall adopt effective measures for the purpose of free and compulsory education. According to a UNDP report, Goal 2 of the Millennium Development Goals -- achieving universal primary education -- is hard for Bangladesh to reach. Out of the three indicators of that Goal, only one -- net enrolment ratio in primary education -- is on track. The other two -- proportion of pupils starting grade one and reaching grade five, and literacy rate of 15-24 years old population -- are not achievable by 2015.
The Jay Treaty between the United States and Great Britain comes into force, facilitating ten years of peaceful trade between the two nations.