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News of: Tuesday, 13th of March, 2012
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Addressing tens of thousands of opposition supporters who gathered in the capital defying government restrictions, BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia yesterday gave the Hasina administration a 90-day ultimatum to announce the restoration of the caretaker system.
When does a government strangulate its capital city by preventing almost all modes of transport from reaching it? When does a government bring to a virtual halt almost all internal city movements? When does a government create such a panicky situation that traders do not open shops out of fear of vandalism? When does a government prevent its own citizens from carrying out their day to day activities? When do government leaders tell blatant lies on television while the truth is clearly the opposite? When does a ruling party let loose its goons upon normal citizens on suspicion that they might attend the opposition rally? When does an elected government adopt the most oppressive measure to prevent the opposition from holding a public rally?
* Two Padma bridges
The streets of the capital yesterday wore the look of a hartal tightly enforced, apparently by the ruling party, as almost all public transport remained off the roads.
The ruling Awami League yesterday said the opposition BNP would not be able to realise any of its demands through movements on the streets, rather it has to join parliament session and sit for discussion with the government.
Viewers at many parts of the city could not watch Ekushey Television, BanglaVision and Islamic TV for around three and a half hours yesterday as the private channels were blacked out without any prior notice.
It's nothing but my fate. Otherwise, why was I born in such a country?
a vegetable vendor at Karwan Bazar
Business bodies yesterday urged political leaders to refrain from calling hartals and to resolve issues through discussions in parliament.
Ruling party high-ups and members of the government blamed BNP for the public suffering owing to the suspension of road and waterways communication centring on the opposition's grand rally in the capital yesterday.
Call it a slip-up or a blunder. But it was a hilarious moment for a crowd at yesterday's grand rally organised by the BNP and its allies. A political leader in his speech mistakenly branded Khaleda Zia as a Tilak-wearing chief minister whom he does not want to see in power anymore. The remark was intended for Khaleda's political foe Sheikh Hasina, the prime minister.
It was a day incomparable with any other. An ever-bustling Dhaka looked deserted, with almost no passenger buses and other motor vehicles seen on most city thoroughfares yesterday.
The opposition grand rally at Nayapaltan and few public transport on the city streets took a heavy toll on the trade and business yesterday.
On March 13, 1971, London's The Economist news magazine reported that Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was effectively in charge of Pakistan's eastern province.
The government will confer "Bangladesh Freedom Honour" on some 129 foreign nationals and organisations for their outstanding contributions in the 1971 Liberation War.
Private satellite channel ETV (Ekushey Television) yesterday denied the telecom regulator's claim that they were broadcasting illegally and termed it untrue.
The International Crimes Tribunal yesterday rejected an appeal seeking adjournment of the proceedings against former Jamaat-e Islami ameer Ghulam Azam in connection with crimes against humanity during the 1971 Liberation War.
Instead of a warm homecoming reception, Lebu Mian found a nervous capital and felt uncertainty within when he landed at Shahjalal International Airport from Riyadh yesterday.
Ten people were killed when the soil caved in on them as they were illegally digging for ancient treasures under a house in a central Egyptian village, police officials told AFP yesterday.
Former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger said Sunday that Russia's president-elect Vladimir Putin is a "patriot" who could turn out to be a constructive partner with the United States on certain issues.
Yemen police and southern separatists clashed yesterday in the country's mostly lawless southeast province of Hadramawt, with one person killed in the fighting, a medical official told AFP.
Yesterday we witnessed the naked and blatant use of not only the state's coercive machinery but also of the AL's party goons to thwart the BNP rally by infusing fear and panic in the minds of the public. Not only RAB and the police but also its party cadres were found preventing free movement of transport and people on the roads and highways and on the riverine routes, by force. It was shocking to see party goons empowered to coerce, harass and assault political opponents.
We are concerned at reports of alleged low-quality renovation and development work at Barisal river port, not only causing losses in the crores through damage of vessels, but putting hundreds of lives at risk. As it is, a large number of passengers go missing or die in launch accidents every year, and one can do without faulty ports adding to the casualties.
Sri Lanka have every reason to employ three pace bowlers at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium when they take on defending champions India in the Asia Cup today.
A mini collapse in the middle-order can still be covered and the innings resurrected if the top three play out more than twenty overs. What Bangladesh did wrong on Sunday was they did not finish with a flourish, and it resulted in the 21-run loss to Pakistan in the Asia Cup opener.
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) president AHM Mustafa Kamal on Monday broke his silence two days after his return from abroad but he turned up only to provide some pointless answers to the recent burning issues and controversies surrounding him.
Illegal Indian bookmakers remain uncowed by successful prosecutions against professional cricketers involved in match-fixing judging by an undercover investigation by the Sunday Times. The UK newspaper has brought yet more claims that corruption opportunities remain rife and have again brought into question the ability of the International Cricket Council (ICC) to police the game without concerted support from the authorities worldwide.
The sixth round of the Grameenphone Bangladesh Premier League gets going today as second placed Muktijoddha Sangsad take on Sheikh Ruseel KC at the Bangabandhu National Stadium. Both teams would be looking to bounce back from defeats as early pace-setters Muktijoddha lost for the first time in their last match against Brothers Union 2-1 while Sheikh Russel got beaten by Abahani 1-0.
Misbahul Haq has become the latest captain under threat of a one-match suspension for maintaining a slow over-rate, after Pakistan fell two overs short of their target in the opening game of the Asia Cup, against Bangladesh in Mirpur on Sunday.
Former winners Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal breezed through with straight-set wins Sunday as a flu bug wreaked havoc on the men's and women's draws at the Indian Wells tournament.
The International Cricket Council on Monday dismissed a claim in a British newspaper that Indian bookmakers were fixing the results of English county games and overseas fixtures.
International Cricket Council (ICC) chief executive Haroon Lorgat has called the ICC World Twenty20 qualifier that begins in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Tuesday "the biggest development event in cricket history".
There were twists, turns and a back flip at the World Indoor Championships on Sunday but no world records, despite pole vault winner Yelena Isinbayeva's best efforts.
Samit Patel said Monday he was hopeful his all-round talents would help him win a Test cap for England during the upcoming series against Sri Lanka.
An Indian cricket journalist had his valuables snatched when he was returning to the hotel after covering the Bangladesh-Pakistan Asia Cup opener at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium on Sunday night.
Carlton Baugh was called up by the West Indies on Sunday to replace the injured Denesh Ramdin for the first three matches of their one-day series against Australia.
Michael Phelps clocked the second-fastest 100m freestyle time in the world this year Sunday to cap a productive three days at USA Swimming's Columbus Grand Prix.
Lionel Messi notched up his 50th club goal of the season with a double on Sunday as Barcelona beat Racing Santander 2-0, but the Catalan club still remain 10 points off La Liga leaders Real Madrid.
The Champions League could have one of the most diverse and understated quarterfinal lineups in its 20-year history if four of Europe's major powers fail to up their game in this week's last-16 second legs.
Brazil coach Mano Menezes says Neymar needs to play to Europe to gain more experience and improve as a player.
AC Milan extended their lead to four points at the top of Serie A with a 2-0 win over Lecce as Juventus were held 0-0 at Genoa on Sunday.
Roberto Mancini insists Manchester City will take the Premier League title race down to the wire after his side surrendered top spot to Manchester United in a shock 1-0 defeat against Swansea.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic was involved in a new controversy on Sunday as his infamous temperament got the better of him during a post-match interview.
Argentine legend Diego Maradona is hoping to find a solution to his tax debt problems in Italy so he can join the 25th anniversary celebrations of Napoli's first Serie A title.
The government yesterday approved in principle the draft of a new value-added tax law that will widen the tax base and scope for collecting more tax.
The government will recognise 87 businesspeople as commercially important persons for their outstanding performance in business, especially exports, the Export Promotion Bureau said yesterday.
India yesterday partially lifted a week-old ban on cotton export after protests from growers and traders at home.
Cotton futures erased gains in India yesterday.
The Chittagong Port Authority invited bidders to participate in a tender to install a video surveillance system at the port to track vessel movements.
Stocks rose marginally yesterday amid thin participation of investors as political tension ran deep in the capital.
India's economy will soon return to high growth, the government pledged Monday, as official data showed industrial output expanded at its fastest clip in seven months and car sales surged.
Citi's Financial Institutions Group organised a thought-sharing session for more than 200 professional women from both public and private financial institutions from Bangladesh as part of Citi's recent celebration of International Women's Day.
CNN is in talks to buy social media news site Mashable for more than $200 million, according to a source familiar with the discussion.
Khondker Fazle Rashid has recently been re-appointed as the managing director of Dhaka Bank, according to a statement of the bank yesterday.
India's cash-strapped Kingfisher Airlines cancelled nearly a fifth of its flights Monday, including at least one international route, after its staff staged a strike over unpaid wages.
New car sales in India climbed 13.1 percent year-on-year in February as the sector showed more signs of recovery from its slump in 2011, an industry body said on Monday.
Japanese electronics giant Panasonic is all set to expand its operations in Bangladesh as it sees the country as one of the next emerging nations.
Fakir Apparels Ltd, a unit of a Narayanganj based garment group, has been able to reduce waste by 25 percent. This was possible because it recently introduced a lean manufacturing system on a pilot basis.
Painters in Chittagong are passing busy hours to complete their works ahead of a nine-day painting exhibition beginning on March 31 at the Institute of Fine Arts, Chittagong University.
Children aged between 12 and 18 years are deprived of proper healthcare services at public hospitals as doctors there are not friendly towards them and, in most cases, remained absent from duties, says a survey on children.
The government will construct 11,264 new flats at Mirpur in the city for low and middle-income people.
Environment and Forests Minister Hasan Mahmud yesterday informed the parliament that the incumbent government has been implementing various programmes to conserve the biodiversity of the country's major tourist attraction, Saint Martin’s Island.
The High Court yesterday asked the government to provide information about health, education and nutrition facilities which are given to the children staying with their detained mothers in jails across the country.
Rapid decline in aquifer level has exposed parts of the southwestern region to huge saline water intrusion into ground, surface waters and soil to affect crops and ecology, say experts.
Judgment in the sensational Ashikur Rahman Khan Apu murder case will be delivered today.
A Bangladeshi worker was killed as a concrete slab fell on him at a construction site of Mass Rapid Transit in Singapore on Saturday, reported a Singaporean newspaper.
My e-Kids Camp, a children's cultural programme, will be held for the second time in the city on Friday.
The High Court yesterday issued a contempt of court rule against Prof Ershadul Bari, former vice chancellor of Bangladesh Open University (BOU), for not appearing before it as per its earlier summons order.
The nuisance of begging alongside the notorious traffic jam earned Dhaka a bad repute of being a city of “cars and beggars” - a scenario that prompted authorities to launch a campaign to eradicate professional begging.
Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) in separate drives arrested three young drug peddlers and seized some Yaba tablets, Phensidyl and pirated CDs in the port city on Saturday and Sunday.
Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) will begin census 2011-12, on four commercial service providing organisations from April 1 throughout the country.
The government has recovered a total of 1,555.232 acres of government land worth Tk 283.33 crore from illegal occupation during the 2010-2011 fiscal year.
Ahmed Saleem, former president of the Human Rights Commission of the Maldives, took office as the new secretary general of the Saarc yesterday.
A factional clash of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) over a trivial matter left two students injured at Rajshahi University of Engineering and Technology (Ruet) yesterday.
State Minister for Home Shamsul Haque Tuku yesterday said the members of law-enforcement agencies are working to protect the life and property of the people.
The driver of an improvised three-wheeler was killed after the vehicle overturned in Baroghoria Bridge area of the sadar upazila yesterday.
Security officials of Chittagong Port Authority yesterday nabbed two persons allegedly for loading goods into a truck without customs clearance.
Two construction workers yesterday died after falling from the sixth floor of a nine-storey under-construction building at Basundhara residential area at Badda in the city.
Members of a local drug peddling gang cut the leg veins of a source of Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) in the city's Malibagh area yesterday.
Air Commodore Mahmud Hussain, chairman of the Civil Aviation Authority, Bangladesh (CAAB), has been promoted to the rank of air vice marshal.
A hill adjoining Bangladesh Air Force (BAF) radar office in Battali area of the port city caught fire yesterday.
The 21st annual general meeting (AGM) of Chattagram Sangbad Hawkers Bahumukhi Samabai Samity was held at a community centre in the port city on Sunday.
The second anniversary of death of renowned journalist and Language Movement veteran KG Mustafa will be observed today.
Scientists of Institute of Mining, Mineralogy and Meteorology (IMMM) in Joypurhat have found 49 per cent presence of iron in the randomly collected samples from the Atrai riverbed in Khansama upazila under the district.
The ongoing excavation by the teachers and students of the Department of General Education of the University of Liberal Arts has brought to light some interesting features of post Gupta period structures at Bhitargarh archaeological site in Panchagarh district.
Fire incidents killed a 6-year-old girl and damaged at least 30 houses and 23 shops in five districts on Sunday.
An employee of transport section of Khulna University of Engineering and Technology (Kuet) was seriously injured in an attack by two BCL-backed outsiders on Sunday.
Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) unearthened two fake fertiliser factories and arrested six people in this connection on Friday night.
Speakers at an awareness programme in Madhupur upazila under the district yesterday urged the government to take steps for planting medicinal plants instead of eucalyptus and acacia in Madhupur forest to preserve its biodiversity.
Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) arrested a man along with three firearms and recovered 37 petrol bombs from two places of the district town on Sunday night and yesterday.
Two fishermen, who were abducted by 'forest robbers' from the Matiranga canal in the river Mamundo in the Sundarbans on Thursday, were released on payment of Tk 30,000 ransom each on Sunday afternoon. The fishermen are Nur Hossain of village Parshekhali and Murshid Gazi of village Jyotindranagar in Shyamnagar upazila.
Three Indian nationals, including a customs official, were held at Benapole Bazar yesterday morning on charge of intruding into Bangladesh territory. The arrestees were identified as customs official at Petrapole check post Balai Paul, his son Tonmoy Paul and Sotyajit Maiti, son of Ajit Kumar Maiti of Medinipur district in Paschimbanga. Commander Sher-e-Alam at Benapole camp of Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) said the three Indians entered Benapole Bazar, one and a half kilometres into Bangladesh territory from the border. Local people informed the BGB men suspecting their movement. Later, the border guards arrested them at around 11:00am.
A 14-year-old girl, abducted by criminals while going to school in Assassuni upazila on Saturday, was rescued by police from a Dhaka-bound night coach at Goalando ferry ghat in Rajbari district around 10pm the same day. Police also arrested the alleged abductor, Sheikh Abu Taher, 22, son of Sheikh Zulfiqar of village Dargahpur in the upazila. The victim is a class nine student of Dargahpur Collegiate School. Quoting relatives of the victim police said, the accused used to stalk the girl on way to school. Victim's father Sheikh Sadar Uddin filed a case with Assassuni PS.
A three-month pregnant woman was killed allegedly by husband at Charmalshapara in the town on Sunday. The dead is Hazera Khatun, 20, wife of Helal Uddin of Nalshapara village of Sadar upazila. Locals said Hazera was married off with Helal, son of Monir Uddin of Charmalshapara Mahalla two years ago. Helal and his sister-in-law (bhabi), who lives at the same house, developed an extra-marital affair soon after the marriage. On Sunday, Helal strangled Hazera to death and went into hiding.
President Barack Obama's approval rating has plunged below 50 percent and he would be beaten by Republican frontrunner Mitt Romney if November's US election were held today, a poll showed yesterday.
Syrian activists said yesterday that pro-government gunmen have killed at least a dozen people - including children - in the latest violence in the embattled central city of Homs.
Attacks against al-Qaeda's favourite targets in Iraq killed 14 people yesterday as insurgents struck security forces, a government office and jewellery stores, demonstrating a continued threat from armed groups as the country prepares to host a meeting of the Arab world's top leaders.
A human rights group and a law firm took legal action yesterday against the British government, accusing it of passing on intelligence to assist US covert drone attacks in Pakistan.
Pakistan yesterday invited Islamist militant groups including the Taliban for peace talks and said banned organisations would be de-listed if they "closed down their militant wings".
Nine candidates are vying to succeed Juan Somavia as director-general of the International Labour Organization, the UN body said yesterday after nominations closed.
Arts & Entertainment
On the occasion of International Women's Day, Galleri Kaya is hosting a group art exhibition, titled “Freedom in Creativity”, featuring the works of 17 women artists. Two sculptors are also taking part in the exhibition -- now on at Galleri Kaya in Uttara.
The five-day Lalon Smaran Utshab (memorial festival) ended at Lalon akhra (shrine) in Cheuria, Kushtia on Sunday night.
It was a comfortable Saturday evening in Dhaka and around 300 people were waiting eagerly for some good music. Known for its mellow melodies, the seasoned band Renaissance was to entertain the audience.
On the occasion of the 202nd birth anniversary of mystic bard Pagla Kanai, a three-day folk festival and a mela (fair) were held at Pagla Kanai complex. The anniversary was observed on March 8 in Jhenidah in a befitting manner. The programme was arranged by Pagla Kanai Smriti Shangrakkhan Shangshad (PKSSS) of Berbari village, Jhenidah.
The three-day 6th Human Rights Theatre Festival ended on March 11 at the Rabindra Sarobar, Dhanmondi. Organised by Bangladesh Manabadhikar Natya Parishad (Manap), the festival featured nearly 25 street plays by troupes from in and outside Dhaka.
Bruce Willis and Ed Norton's latest movie “Moonrise Kingdom” has been selected to open this year's Cannes Film Festival.
Marking the 80th year of Muslim Institute, Mymensingh, the members of the institute staged a play “Lorai” on March 9.
It was our misfortune to have been born in Bangladesh. It doesn't matter which party is in office. We common citizens have always suffered, will always suffer."
There is one colourful aspect of elections that has been sadly neglected in the coverage of this vibrant game called democracy. This is the Post Campaign Trauma Syndrome, or PCTS, as it is known among experts. Needless to point out, this afflicts only losers, since winners are simply too busy celebrating to have time for analysis. Angst is for losers. But here is what winners miss: the sudden flowering of creativity. Defeat is a splendid tonic for imagination, taking the also-ran towards the realms of if, but and into that wide, wide world of the infinite alibi.
Going into last week's presidential election in Russia, two things were almost certain: Vladimir Putin would win the election and the opposition would protest the results. This is exactly what happened. As Putin won about 64% of the votes, the results were immediately called into question by the opposition who alleged ballot stuffing, carousel voting and irregularities in vote counting.
Kurt Hahn was a genius of experiential education in the 20th century, whose legacy shines forth through four institutions of renown -- the Gordonstoun School in Scotland, the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme, the United World Colleges in thirteen nations, and Outward Bound, found in thirty five nations on all five of the major continents.
The prestigious Ekushey Padak awarded to Prof. A. K. Nazmul Karim in 2012, three decades after his death, was a fitting tribute to a great social scientist and a remarkable teacher. I remember a particular conversation I had with Professor Karim when he told me: "You can come to see me anytime you want -- day or night -- to discuss sociology, but if it is to discuss politics, you are not welcome." I narrate this to my students often, reminding them that my doors are always open to them. I remember fondly the time when we were students of Professor Nazmul Karim, who dedicated himself to teaching and promoting social values when at a time when the entire society and social values in particular were up against great challenges in the post-independence Bangladesh.
Battle of Badr: a key battle between Muhammad's army the new followers of Islam and the Quraish of Mecca. The Muslims won this battle, known as the turning point of Islam, which took place in the Hejaz region of western Arabia.
Science & Life
In the late 1960's, the Standard Model (SM) of physics was developed to study elementary particles and forces of nature. It is a menagerie of 17 structureless fundamental particles (6 of them quarks), which are the basic building block of the universe. Quarks exist inside particles called hadrons - composites of either three quarks or a quark-antiquark pair bound together by gluons.
Ever wonder how this gigantic Universe of ours will come to an end? One possible theory, amongst many, is the Big Crunch theory. And it states that one day in the future, our Universe will not only stop expanding, but also reverse due to the immense pull of gravity and eventually will collapse into itself and eventually will turn into a super-hot, super-dense singularity. Some scientists even conjecture that this collapse into an imaginably big black hole would eventually trigger another Big Bang (BB).
Do you know enough about solar flares? Is the possibility of a solar flare and the year 2012 encounter freaking you out? Then just calm down and learn the facts to uncover the truth and dispel your fear.
The hair cells of the inner ear have a previously unknown "root" extension that may allow them to communicate with nerve cells and the brain to regulate sensitivity to sound vibrations and head position, researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine have discovered.
Triceratops may no longer have an identity crisis. As paleontologists lock horns on whether these dinosaurs were just baby versions of the largerTorosaurus, the latest clues suggest the two were indeed separate species.
The inside of a cylindrical antineutrino detector before being filled with clear liquid scintillator, which reveals antineutrino interactions by the very faint flashes of light they emit. Sensitive photomultiplier tubes line the detector walls, ready to amplify and record the telltale flashes.
Guineafowl were also known as turkey fowl (or turkey hen and turkey cock) because they were imported to Central Europe through Turkey. Turkey fowl, shortened to just the name of the country, stuck as the name of the North American bird. When Europeans first encountered turkeys in the Americas, they incorrectly identified the birds as a type of guineafowl (Numididae). In 1550, English navigator William Strickland, who had introduced the turkey into England, was granted a coat of arms including a "turkey-cock in his pride proper".