News of: Tuesday, 27th of March, 2012
The country's 41st independence day was observed yesterday with the nation taking a vow to expedite the war crimes trial, and consolidate democracy in line with the spirit of the War of Liberation.
The Daily Star on Sunday talked to four of the foreigners who are in the city now to receive state accolades for their role in the Liberation War. Of them, Biman Mullick designed postage stamps for the Bangladesh government in exile; ex-Labour MP Michael Barnes made the British people aware of what was going on here in 1971; photographer Takayoshi Suzuki campaigned across Japan and raised funds for the refugees; and Bibhu Kumari Devi of Tripura worked for around 50,000 Bangladeshi families that her husband late Maharaja Kirit Bikram Kishore had sheltered on his palace premises.
General Asad Durrani, former chief of Pakistani intelligence agency ISI, has outright denied funding BNP before the 1991 parliamentary polls of Bangladesh.
At least 30 people were injured and 15 vehicles vandalised yesterday during a clash between activists of the ruling Awami League and the opposition BNP over who would be at the National Memorial first.
The main opposition BNP alleged that its Chairperson Khaleda Zia was yesterday obstructed on her way to the National Memorial in Savar.
Bangladesh will present awards to its foreign friends today for their outstanding contributions to the country's Liberation War 41 years ago.
The Daily Star and several other newspapers recently carried reports based on stories published in The Khaleej Times and Daily Mail Online about the admission by Pakistani military officials in court that the ISI paid money to BNP Chairperson and Leader of the Opposition Khaleda Zia for the general election in 1991.
Both Houses of Indian parliament were rocked yesterday as opposition members created uproar over Army Chief General VK Singh's allegation that he was offered Rs 14 crore bribe by an equipment lobbyist.
Chittagong city will face a deeper water crisis from April when demand for water is projected to peak to a level three times the water supplying authorities are able to supply.
For a section of police officials, collecting toll from small traders on the footpaths in Farmgate in the capital has become a smart means of making quick bucks.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina tomorrow will open Chittagong's first flyover that is supposed to significantly make easy the movement of cargo-carrying vehicles to and from the port.
When people at home and abroad have been coming down hard on the Rapid Action Battalion over its alleged human rights violations, its director general yesterday claimed that the force was among the best which safeguarded human rights.
"Titanic" director James Cameron returned to the surface yesterday after a solo submarine dive to the deepest point in the world's oceans that was hailed as the ultimate test of "man and his machine."
A 7.1 magnitude earthquake struck central Chile Sunday, prompting an evacuation of coastal areas for fear of a tsunami and causing scenes of panic in an area devastated by a massive quake two years ago.
Indian government officials and representatives of Maoist rebels yesterday resumed talks after one of two Italian men who were kidnapped 12 days ago was released.
Opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party, to its credit, has been rather introspective in matters of calling hartals, not rushing into it every now and then, a known fixation with an opposition party in our country. It is heartening to note that the BNP has called off its prescheduled hartal on March 29 in deference to a Hindu festival -- Punna Snan (holy dip) -- falling on the same day. Being sensitive to religious sentiments of a community which had made a plea for it, is laudable, though it was only to be expected.
Today, the State honours 75 foreign nationals who contributed to the independence movement of Bangladesh with the “Friends of Liberation War Honour” and the “Bangladesh Liberation War Honour”. Forty-one years into the birth of our nation, journalists, former army officers, politicians and others who played a role at the time, and, for those not alive today, members of their families, have returned or have come for the first time to the country to whose liberation they contributed. Of the 75 awardees, 21 are alive and here today, while the remaining awards will be received posthumously by their family members.
Bangladesh's Shakib Al Hasan has returned as the No 1 ranked all-rounder in the latest Reliance ICC ODI Championship table after his tremendous performance in the Asia Cup which concluded last Thursday.
Skipper Mahela Jayawardene crafted a classy century to steer Sri Lanka out of trouble on the opening day of the first Test against England in Galle on Monday.
Usha Krira Chakra moved into the final of the Dhaka Bank Independence Cup Hockey Tournament with a 3-1 win over Bangladesh Army at the Maulana Bhasani Hockey Stadium yesterday.
Bangladesh Green posted a nine-run victory against Bangladesh Red in the Independence Day Exhibition cricket match at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur yesterday.
The election of the Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) will take place on schedule on April 28 with anyone related to football eligible to compete in the coming polls.
Cricket's governing body in Asia on Monday rejected a complaint from Bangladesh that one of their batsmen was obstructed by a Pakistani bowler in their recent Asia Cup final defeat.
The Dhaka Metro Zone final of the Standard Chartered Young Tigers National School Cricket will take place at the Dhanmondi Cricket Stadium today.
Bangladesh won two gold medals in the First South Asian Weightlifting Championship that concluded on Sunday in Nepal, said a press release yesterday.
Australia captain Michael Clarke has confirmed he is in talks to join Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Pune Warriors, reports said Monday.
South Africa pace sensation Vernon Philander became the fastest man in 116 years to reach 50 Test wickets on Monday as New Zealand struggled to stay alive in the third Test.
West Indies' hopes of a first series win over Australia in 17 years were shattered on Sunday when the tourists clinched a 30-run victory in a thrilling fifth and final one-dayer.
Former New Zealand all-rounder Chris Cairns has won a libel action against Lalit Modi in London that leaves the one-time chairman of the Indian Premier League (IPL) facing a bill of more than 500,000 pounds (794,000 dollars).
World number two Rafael Nadal cruised through to the last 16 at the ATP-WTA Miami Masters tournament, while fourth seeded Andy Murray advanced without even breaking a sweat on Sunday.
Juventus beat arch rivals Inter Milan 2-0 in Turin on Sunday to keep the pressure on AC Milan at the top of the Serie A table.
Two late goals gave big-spending Malaga a 2-1 win at Espanyol on Sunday which moved them into fourth spot in La Liga and well-placed for a Champions League place.
When Cypriot giant killers APOEL face the mighty Real Madrid on Tuesday, some might call the Champions League quarterfinal, first leg tie the biggest mismatch ever at this stage of the competition.
Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo is looking to his Benfica old boys as the Blues attempt to edge closer to the Champions League semifinals against the Portuguese giants here Tuesday.
Former England manager Glenn Hoddle is interested in leading his country again on a caretaker basis at the European Championship in Poland and Ukraine.
Newcastle United continued their push for Europa League football next season when two excellent goals from Papiss Cisse and a superb strike from Hatem ben Arfa gave them a 3-1 win at West Bromwich Albion in the Premier League on Sunday.
Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) emerged champions in the Igloo Independence Cup Handball Tournament beating Bangladesh Police in the one-off match at Shaheed (capt) M Mansur Ali National Hockey Stadium yesterday.
Fabrice Muamba watched his Bolton Wanderers team-mates playing local rivals Blackburn Rovers on a television highlights programme -- but fell asleep before the end of the match.
Bangladesh spent only 7.3 percent of foreign aid in the first seven months of the current fiscal year, which is the lowest in the last three fiscal years.
Procter & Gamble (P&G) plans to introduce more of its products to Bangladesh to tap the market potential, as the steady economic growth of the country is fuelling demand for consumer goods.
Online shopping is becoming popular in Bangladesh, encouraging new entrants to open e-portals for consumer goods and household essentials.
German luxury carmaker BMW said on Monday it was recalling some 1.3 million cars worldwide due to battery problems that could in extreme cases result in a fire.
Bangladesh's trade deficit with other South Asian countries crossed $2 billion in the six months through December.
The Bellagio casino-hotel in Las Vegas hosted a shotgun wedding in January. The bride and groom had met just wars since Sony has produced a new mega-hit device. Its TV business is an albatross that has accumulated losses of $10 billion. The company is on course for a fourth straight annual net loss for the year ending March 31. Efforts to connect its vast entertainment and games content with its huge menu of gadgets began way back in the 1990s - but are still a work in progress.
A strike by jewellers to protest against a government levy entered its tenth day in most parts of India, bringing imports to a near standstill from the world's biggest buyer of bullion in the peak wedding season.
When I tell people in Hong Kong, London or New York that Bangladesh is a land of untapped business opportunities, there are usually some who'll raise their eyebrows in incredulity or admiration. For those who haven't visited in person, it's a country they only know from media headlines as a place of natural calamities and social pressures as the population expands.
Emerging economies must be given a fair shot at leading the institutions at the heart of global finance or they will end up going their own way, a challenger for the top job at the World Bank said.
Shares in India's Kingfisher Airlines slid to a record low on Monday, on fears that the national aviation regulator may soon ground the debt-laden carrier.
The US economy needs to grow more quickly if it is to produce enough jobs to bring down the unemployment rate, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said on Monday.
Australian flag carrier Qantas and China Eastern Airlines said Monday they will launch a new Hong Kong-based budget airline next year aimed at cashing in on China's booming aviation market.
From solar-powered lights to televisions that can withstand power blackouts, electronics mega-firms are wooing African consumers with products that target local, often challenging, environments.
US lawnmower manufacturer Briggs & Stratton is used to worrying about turnover - just not the human kind.
Early on the morning of March 16, Wong Tat joined a line of about 100 people waiting for the launch of the new iPad in a chilly rain outside an Apple store on the outskirts of San Francisco.
“Chhabir Haat”, a painting exhibition to be organised as part of “The Daily Star Odommo Chattagram” festival, will help showcase Chittagong-based artists and their creations alongside the influence the region has on this form of culture, said artists yesterday.
The family members of a 25-year-old youth who was killed in a “shootout” with police in the city's Mirpur Zoo area on Sunday night claimed that the business rivals of the victim's elder brother got him killed by police.
A fire broke out at a polythene factory at Nimtoli in the old part of the capital yesterday.
Independence Day was celebrated in Rajshahi, Rajshahi University (RU), and Chittagong University (CU) yesterday with a call for remaining united to ensure speedy trial of war criminals.
Different government, non-government, socio-cultural and political organisations observed the country's 41st Independence Day yesterday in a befitting manner.
Three people were killed and four others injured in separate road accidents in Narail, Chittagong and Jhenidah yesterday.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday urged children to build themselves up as 'ideal people’ and thus the real posterity of a heroic nation to lead Bangladesh in the world.
The Bangladesh Railway (BR) has blacklisted around 6,500 mobile phone numbers of suspected touts to stop selling of tickets in black market.
An unidentified teenage boy yesterday evening drowned in a pond in the capital's Mohanagar Natyamancha when he was trying to lift a cricket ball from the water in exchange of Tk 10.
“Though the country has been facing different problems, it has great potential to become a developed country and it depends on our contribution”, said Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) Mayor M Manjur Alam yesterday.
Veteran journalist Habibur Rahman Sheikh passed away of cancer at Mymensingh Medical College and Hospital yesterday. He was 67.
A transport worker died after falling from his truck at Mirpur-1 roundabout early yesterday.
Foreign Minister Dipu Moni said Bangladesh would remain ever grateful to India for its contribution to the War of Liberation in 1971.
A branch of Geeta Teaching Centre was opened at Gouranga Mahaprabhu Temple at north Maishundi of Tipu Sultan Road in the old part of the city yesterday, says a press release.
Meghalaya Chief Minister Mukul Sangma has arrived in Dhaka to receive his mother Rawshanara Begum Sangma's posthumous honour from Bangladesh in recognition of her role in the Liberation War.
Police arrested a person from Cement Crossing area in Patenga of the port city yesterday for illegally possessing huge quantities of foreign cigarettes.
A day-labourer succumbed to his injuries sustained when a portion of the tin-shed bakery fell on him while he was shifting its furniture at Uttar Badda in the city yesterday.
A leader of Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami was arrested from Silimpur area in Sitakunda upazila in the port city yesterday on charge of planning subversive activities.
Today is the 41st death anniversary of martyred scientist Dr Harinath Dey, a lecturer of Biochemistry Department of Dhaka University.
While the country's farmers are facing acute irrigation problems in the current boro season for power outages, Bangladesh's electricity is being used to irrigate acres of land in Indian enclaves attached to Domar upazila of the district.
People of Indian enclaves inside Bangladesh first ever observed Independence Day in their respective enclaves hoisting Bangladeshi national flag yesterday.
Criminals kidnapped a primary school student for ransom on Sunday on his way to school in Panchagarh town.
Sufferings of users have mounted as the prices of liquefied petroleum (LP) gas in the hill town shot up over the last couple of weeks.
Police yesterday filed a case against 250 workers of Ishwardi Export Processing Zone (EPZ) in connection with Sunday's violence.
Several important roads in the district have remained in an awful condition due to lack of repair work for long.
Motors of around 130 deep tubewells of Barind Multipurpose Development Authority (BMDA) have burned up recently allegedly due to erratic power supply.
Locals of the town's bus terminal area blocked Rangpur-Dhaka highway yesterday for about three hours from 2:00 pm, protesting death of a patient allegedly due to wrong treatment at a private clinic.
At least 20 activists of opposition BNP and its front organisations were injured in an attack allegedly by Awami League men at Bajitpur upazila headquarters here yesterday noon.
An elderly man was stabbed to death allegedly by his neighbour at Alisahaspur village in Bholahat upazila yesterday morning. The victim is Ekramul Ali, 60, of the village. Hossain Suhrawardy, officer in-charge of Bholahat police station, there was a longstanding clash between Ekramul and Jahan Ali over a disputed land. Family members of Jahan and Ekramul locked in an altercation over the issue at around 7:45am. At one stage, Jahan attacked the victim with a knife, leaving him injured seriously. Ekramul died on way to upazila health complex. On information, police recovered the body and sent it to Sadar hospital morgue for autopsy. Police arrested Jahan, 25, son of Afsar Ali, in this connection, said the OC.
A schoolteacher was killed allegedly by a criminal at Akua Milonbagh in the town yesterday afternoon. The deceased, Khandaker Musa, 59, is a teacher at Nasirabad Collegiate School in the town. There had been a longstanding clash between Musa and his neighbour Swapon Mia over a piece of disputed land. Following the issue, the schoolteacher assaulted Sohag, son of Swapon three months ago, said police. Quoting family members, Golam Sarwar, officer in-charge of Kotwali police station, said Sohag entered the house of Musa and stabbed him indiscriminately, killing him on the spot at around 4:00pm. On information, police recovered the body and sent it to Mymensingh Medical College and Hospital (MMCH) morgue for autopsy. The incident occurred when the victim is sleeping in his room.
Police recovered the body of a five-month-old baby boy from a beel (a large water body) at Char Ramshidhi village in Sadar upazila yesterday. The victim is Sahariar sheikh, son of Hasibur Rahman of Vobanipur village. Hasibur alleged that his wife Sathi Begum, 28, had an extra marital relation with her cousin. On Saturday, she went to her father's house with Sahariar. Locals found the victim's body floating on the water body and informed police at around 11:30am, said Hasibur. On information, police recovered the body and sent it to Narail Sadar Hospital morgue for autopsy.
Robbers looted cash and other valuables from at least 18 shops at Khulumbaria Bazar in Shailkupa upazila on Sunday midnight. Besides, they looted Grameen Bank. The affected shop owners include Mannan Mollah, Gobinda Kundo, Sirajul Islam, Mizanur Rahman, Alamin Mia, Majed Ali, Tipu Sultan, Badsha Mia, Nuruzzaman Mondal, Anwarul Islam, Rezaul Biswas, Sohel Hossain, Lutfor Rahman, Masud Ali, Ashit Kumar, Morshed Ali, Shukur Kundo and Gopal Kunda. A gang of 35/40 swooped on the shops and took away Tk 10 lakh, said a grocery shop owner Liton Mia at the bazar. No case was filed in this connection till filing of this report at 6:00pm yesterday.
A US delegation walked out of a conference in Tajikistan Monday during a speech by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad lambasting US policy on Afghanistan as the source of all the nation's troubles.
President Barack Obama said Monday the United States would further cut its nuclear arsenal, as he warned in a hard-hitting address that North Korea and Iran must back down over their atomic plans.
South Korea is hosting the second world Nuclear Security Summit, a gathering first convened in 2010 by US President Barack Obama with the goal of securing vulnerable nuclear material by 2014.
Sri Lanka's foreign minister said Monday he would meet with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton after the adoption of a UN resolution pushing Colombo to properly investigate war crimes allegations.
A Tibetan exile set himself on fire and suffered extreme burns as he ran down a street in New Delhi yesterday to protest against an upcoming visit to India by Chinese President Hu Jintao.
Authorities in Beijing plan to pass a rule this year aimed at curbing water usage by the capital's many golf courses and ski resorts, an official said yesterday, as the city battles severe shortages.
Senegal's Macky Sall yesterday hailed a new era after triumphing over veteran leader Abdoulaye Wade in a presidential election lauded as an example for African democracy.
The head of a Canadian engineering firm with dealings in Muammar Gaddafi's Libya and loosely linked to a failed plot to smuggle the ex-dictator's son into Mexico has quit, the company said yesterday.
Britain's David Cameron yesterday admitted to hosting donors to his Conservative party at his official residence, the day after a top party official quit for trying to sell access to the premier.
Three foreign soldiers, two of them British, were killed by Afghan security personnel yesterday in two separate shootings, officials said, bringing the number of such deaths to 16 this year.
Syria has responded afresh to UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan on his six-point proposals to end the crisis in the country, the former UN chief's spokesman said yesterday as violence continues to rage in the crisis hit country.
More than 10 people were killed in clashes yesterday in Libya between Toubou tribesmen and residents of the southern city of Sabha, local officials said.
Turkey's former army chief Ilker Basbug went on trial yesterday on charges of leading a terrorist group accused of plotting to overthrow the Islamist-rooted government, local media said.
India's defence minister ordered federal investigators yesterday to probe revelations by the country's top military officer that he had been offered a $2.8 million bribe to clear a procurement deal.
Pakistan PM Yousaf Raza Gilani on Sunday said that his country needs civil nuclear technology to meet its energy requirements besides maintaining balance with India in the region.
Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi is recovering after she fell ill on the campaign trail, but must rest this week ahead of weekend by-elections, her party said yesterday.
A Pakistani court will next week charge Osama bin Laden's widows and two of his grown-up daughters with illegal entry and residency, their lawyer told AFP yesterday.
The United States yesterday said it was suspending aid to the government of Mali after a coup in the African nation last week, and called for the elected government to be restored.
Nearly two-thirds of Israeli Jews believe that the consequences for the Jewish state of a nuclear-armed Iran would be worse than those of an Israeli attack on the Islamic Republic, a poll showed yesterday.
Malians marched in Bamako yesterday to protest against the junta while Tuareg rebels threatened to capture a key northern city, piling political and military pressure on the coup leaders.
Arts & Entertainment
In August 1971, a friend from a far away land revealed his empathy for the people of the then war-ridden Bangladesh. George Harrison, the former Beatle, responded to one of his friends [Pandit Ravi Shankar] and sang “My friend came to me, with sadness in his eyes/He told me that he wanted help, before his country dies…Bangladesh.”
Marking Independence Day, a week- long photography exhibition began at Bangladesh Agricultural University (BAU) here yesterday.
“Amar Bondhu Rashed”, a Liberation War- based film, was screened at Sangskritik Biplobi Sangha (SABIS) auditorium in Manikganj on Sunday.
The five-day Sikandar Abu Zafar mela, marking the 93rd birth anniversary of poet Sikandar Abu Zafar was inaugurated recently at Tentulia high school premises.
Airtel organised an exclusive photographic exhibition on March 26, at the premises of Dhaka University Hakim Chattar, says a press release.
After a long hiatus, DVDs of Tareque and Catherine Masud films-- "Muktir Kotha" and "Muktir Gaan"-- with subtitles were launched on March 25 at the British Council auditorium, says a press release. The “Muktir Kotha” DVD also features a brief version of a documentary relating to women freedom fighters.
A vibrant cultural programme was held on Sunday night at Cooperative Market premises in the town commemorating the dark night of March 25, 1971the when Pakistani occupation forces launched a brutal crackdown on unarmed Bengalis, killing academics,students, police personnel as well as members of East Pakistan Rifles and citizens in general.
Desh TV turned three on March 26. With a three day special programme, the TV channel is celebrating “Desh Utshab”, featuring documentaries, films, musical programmes and more. The celebration also marks the 41st Independence Day. Politicians, cultural personalities, journalists, teachers and people from all walks of life attended the anniversary programme held at Desh TV office in Malibagh, Dhaka.
A recent meeting of parliamentarians from over 20 vulnerable developing countries, including from Africa, Least Developed Countries, small island developing states and Latin America together with some developed countries, including Canada, United Kingdom and the Netherlands, met in Dhaka from March 14 to 16 and came out with the Dhaka Parliamentary Declaration and also formed a Parliamentarians for Climate Justice Network.
What happ-ened in the Jatiya Sangsad last week defies any logic. BNP's joining of the Sangsad proceedings was followed by speeches by several female legislators which were laden with partisan jabs, name calling, and cheap shots. Sadly, substance did not apply to any of these speeches.
The day I started writing this article Bangladesh achieved a great win by defeating its bigger neighbour, India, by five wickets in a cricket match at the Mirpur Cricket Stadium, Dhaka. However, two days earlier, on March 14, Bangladesh achieved a greater win in a courtroom in Hamburg, Germany against its other big neighbour, Myanmar. This article aims to explain the significance of the other great win, the judgment by the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS), by which Bangladesh established its sovereign rights to a full 200 nautical mile exclusive economic zone in the Bay of Bengal, and to a substantial share of the "outer continental shelf" beyond 200 nautical miles. The judgment of March 14 sets an important precedent as this was the first time that ITLOS delimited a maritime area beyond 200 nautical miles, known as the "outer continental shelf."
Crimean War: The United Kingdom declares war on Russia.
Science & Life
A breakthrough for inexpensive electricity from solar cells, and a massive investment in wind power, will mean a need to store energy in an intelligent way. According to research at Linköping University, published in Science, batteries of biological waste products from pulp mills could provide the solution.
Zoos may be welcoming fewer baby rhinos into the world in the future: Their reproductive rates are dropping drastically because of medical problems. New research suggests their zoo diet could be playing a role in the drop in babies and increase in disease.
We often hear about astronomers discovering a new planet within the goldilocks zone. But what is this goldilocks zone (GZ) and why is any news of sighting a planet within the vicinity of GZ interesting? In astronomy, goldilocks zone, is also known as the habitable around a star where a planet or several planets with enough atmospheric pressure are able to maintain liquid water on their surface without the water neither being completely vaporized or frozen. And the existence of liquid water signals the presence of life.
Improving health for the poor depends on nurturing local innovations and learning how to deliver them, argue Abdallah Daar and Peter Singer.
There aren't too many gardens at the South Pole. But there are, apparently, garden gnomes. A globe-trotting little garden gnome dubbed "Kern" recently visited Amundsen-Scott Research Station at the geographic South Pole in Antarctica. The inanimate traveler's trip was a take on the "Traveling Gnome Prank," a joke that's been in vogue since the 1980s, when pranksters started stealing garden gnomes and sending photographs of the statuettes in front of famous sightseeing spots to their owners.
Some larval sponges search for a shady place to settle down, but they don't have optic nerves or the genes that are important for vision in most animals. Now biologists have new insight into how sponges might see light.
Although parrots can be trained to say about 200 words and short phrases, as a species, they are not the best of the bird mimics. In fact, the top word mimic is actually the Mynah bird. Its ability to create amazingly realistic human and non human sounds such as words, coughs, sneezes and even cell phone ring tones is well documented.