News of: Friday, 13th of April, 2012
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The Monday night recovery of a stash of money from the vehicle of the rail minister's assistant personal secretary has opened a Pandora's box of reports on a web of corruption centring recruitment of about 7,000 people in the railway.
Persons who got jobs in Bangladesh Railway East Zone in the last one year, almost all of them had to pay bribe ranging from Tk 2.5 lakh to Tk 6 lakh to a nexus of the zone's General Manager Yusuf Ali Mridha, some other senior officials, and some leaders of local Railway Sramik League.
Rail Minister Suranjit Sengupta's son Soumen Sengupta was awarded a Tk 5-crore telecommunication gateway licence yesterday, just two days after the railwaygate scandal involving the minister's close aide and two top railway officials.
A barrage of criticism continued against Railway Minister Suranjit Sengupta in connection with Tk 70 lakh being found in his assistant personal secretary's car and his handling of the matter.
Railway Minister Suranjit Sengupta has defended himself against his alleged links to Monday's cash haul and dismissed it as a conspiracy to ruin his political image.
Amid widespread criticism, the railway ministry yesterday recast one of the two committees it had formed earlier to probe the recovery of Tk 70 lakh from the possession of the railway minister's assistant personal secretary (APS) and two top railway officials on Monday night.
Bangladesh and Turkey have appreciated each other's steps to thwart any unconstitutional move to take over power, agreeing that democracy is essential for development of any country.
Ruling Awami League has directed its Dhaka city unit to select one councillor candidate for each ward to avoid emergence of multiple candidates from within the party in the upcoming city corporation polls.
The Election Commission has decided to warn Dhaka City Corporation (DCC) mayoral and councillor hopefuls who violated the electoral code of conduct by not removing their posters, banners and billboards in the city by April 12 midnight.
The International Monetary Fund has approved a $987 million loan to Bangladesh to help the country overcome macroeconomic pressures and build a buffer reserve.
The investigation officer who probed the charges of war crimes brought against Jamaat-e-Islami leader Delawar Hossain Sayedee yesterday presented several pieces of evidence before the International Crimes Tribunal-1.
Locals yesterday set fire to the house and shop of Md Zakaria, the main accused in the kidnap and murder of school boy Naimul Islam Naim in Kahaloo upazila of Bogra, right after a rally they held at the upazila protesting the killing.
Bangladesh will start negotiation with Malaysia on the funding of Padma bridge project once the Southeast Asian country submits its full proposal, Communications Minister Obaidul Quader said yesterday.
A fleeing bus carrying stolen cows and five thieves hit a police barricade on Begum Rokeya Sarani in the capital's Agargaon, killing a cop and injuring four others early yesterday.
Thousands of people took to streets and clashed with police to protest the ruling Communist Party's move to remove popular leader Bo Xilai from its politburo and charge his wife with murdering a British citizen in China's southwestern city of Chongqing on Wednesday.
At least five people, including three civilians, were killed late Thursday when a suicide bomber struck in northern Afghanistan, police said.
Yemen's army raided al-Qaeda positions in the southern province of Abyan yesterday, killing eight militants as battles between Islamists and civilians killed another two, local sources said.
A British lawyer said he is taking legal action in the United States on behalf of three alleged victims of phone hacking by the News of the World.
The Philippines yesterday withdrew its largest warship from a disputed South China Sea location in a bid to ease a stand-off with China.
We have been witnessing an alarming rise in incidents of brutalising children and killing them just for realising ransom money or as a reprisal against somebody.
The two quakes that occurred off the coast of Sumatra on April 11 sent mental shockwaves for millions of people in Bangladesh. What is commendable is the manner in which the Indonesian early warning system alerted people of the need to initiate orderly withdrawal to safer grounds as the danger approached. Thanks to proper dissemination of information and public awareness, Indonesian authorities were in effect able to avoid mass hysteria, which if it had occurred would inevitably have complicated matters for an orderly evacuation.
Mohammedan Sporting Club posted their third victory in the Grameenphone Bangladesh Premier League when they handed an easy 3-1 defeat to neighbouring Arambagh KS at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.
The farce surrounding the resumption of the Dhaka Premier Division Cricket Super League continued as the Cricket Committee of Dhaka Metropolis (CCDM) said yesterday that it will not be possible for them to restart the league today.
South African Charl Schwartzel shot a red-hot eight-under-par 64 on the opening day of the Maybank Malaysian Open to take a one-shot lead from India's Jeev Milkha Singh at the top of the table at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club yesterday.
Albie Morkel turned the game on its head with some lusty hits as Chennai Super Kings snatched a sensational five-wicket victory in the very last ball against Royal Challengers Bangalore in a dramatic IPL match here on Thursday.
England's Dimitri Mascarenhas notched up a sensational five-wicket haul while Shaun Marsh hit a classy fifty as Kings XI Punjab brought their campaign back on track with a seven-wicket victory over Pune Warriors in an IPL match here Thursday.
The Samsung National Tennis Championship will get underway from Sunday at the National Tennis Complex in Ramna with 280 players from 32 teams taking part.
Australia drew first blood here on Wednesday beating the West Indies by three wickets in a thrilling finish to the first Test.
Jealousy could be the reason for negative attitudes in England towards the cash-rich Indian Premier League (IPL), England batting star Kevin Pietersen has said.
The Bangladesh national hockey team will leave for Bangkok tomorrow to take part in the Fourth Men's AHF Cup with the hope of retaining the title they won in the 2008 edition.
Juventus regained the Serie A lead after Alessandro Del Piero scored a late free kick on his 700th appearance for the club to seal a 2-1 home win over Lazio on Wednesday.
Off-spinner Shane Shillingford has been added to the West Indies squad for the second Test against Australia, beginning on April 15 at Queen's Park Oval in Trinidad.
Jamaican sprint star Usain Bolt's final race before the London Olympic Games will be over 200m at the Monaco Diamond League meeting on July 20, it was announced on Thursday.
Former world 800-metre champion Caster Semenya hopes to secure a place this weekend in the South Africa team for the 2012 London Olympics.
A Cristiano Ronaldo hattrick fired Real Madrid to a 4-1 derby win at Atletico Madrid on Wednesday to restore their four-point cushion on Barcelona at the top of the Primera Liga.
Struggling Wigan breathed life into the Premier League title race with a stunning 1-0 upset of Manchester United on Wednesday as Manchester City romped to a 4-0 win over West Bromwich Albion.
Bayern Munich's Arjen Robben has admitted he was embarrassed by his crucial penalty miss in his team's 1-0 defeat at German league leaders Dortmund which looks to have handed their rivals the title.
UEFA chief Michel Platini on Thursday accused "bandits and crooks" of hiking hotel prices in Ukraine to sky-high levels for the Euro 2012 football championships, amid growing concerns over the price of accommodation. "
Pele says Lionel Messi isn't the best player in the world today - much less of all time.
Bangladesh seeks an agreement with India to import 1.5 million bales of cotton a year to ensure a smooth supply to spinners, a senior official of the commerce ministry said yesterday.
Stocks continued to gain for a third day, with the highest turnover since July 31 last year, as institutional and small investors are injecting fresh funds into the market amid optimism. Turnover rose 26.7 percent to Tk 1,079 crore from the previous day.
The telecom regulator yesterday handed over 72 new gateway licences to different firms in three categories.
The government has committed to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to increase the prices of fuel and fertiliser further to reduce the costs of subsidy.
India's Maruti Suzuki launched its first utility vehicle on Thursday, breaking into one of the country's fastest-growing automobile segments as it battles to recover lost market share. The Japanese-controlled firm, which has seen its share of the Indian market decline to below 40 percent for the first time in its history, said the new vehicle would be important to helping drive future sales growth.
The high value cheque clearing has doubled and the duration of clearing time has reduced significantly maximising speedy payments as Bangladesh Bank is clearing high value cheques and regular value cheques with an automated cheque processing system, officials said.
The insurance regulator yesterday warned Popular Life Insurance for taking so long to reply to a show-cause notice over disputed-land purchase by misusing policyholders' money.
Panchagarh has bright prospects to boost tea cultivation with its favourable weather and soil condition, experts said at a training course on tea cultivation in the district recently.
Japan's Sony said Thursday it will cut about 10,000 jobs and spend nearly $1.0 billion on restructuring as its new leader looks to staunch multi-billion dollar losses and turn the company around.
ASM Feroz Alam has recently been re-elected as chairman of Premier Leasing Securities Ltd, the company said in a statement.
Radisson Blu Water Garden Hotel took three-day special arrangements to welcome the Bengali New Year -- Pahela Baishakh.
Economic shocks like the eurozone debt crisis are behind an expected slowdown in global trade growth to 3.7 percent this year, from 5.0 percent in 2011, the World Trade Organization said Thursday.
A three-day fair titled “Chhotoder Pahela Baishakh” (Bangla new year for children) began at Fulki, a reputed educational institute, in the port city yesterday.
The government and development organisations should work together on climate change adaptation programmes so that the country can be better equipped in taking on the impacts of global warming, said a climate expert yesterday.
An RMG factory worker was killed as an LP gas cylinder-laden pick up van him on Maijdee-Chaumuhani road before the Globe Biscuit, Soft Drinks and Beverage Factory in Begumganj upazila yesterday.
President Zillur Rahman yesterday urged the Information Commission (IC) to take further steps to ensure people's rights to information.
A Bangladeshi cattle trader was allegedly killed by Indian Border Security Force (BSF) on Kaijuri-Baikari border early yesterday.
The High Court yesterday asked the food secretary and director general of the department of food to appear before it on April 26 in connection with a contempt of court rule.
A Supreme Court lawyer yesterday served a legal notice on the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) to stop the process of holding elections to bifurcated Dhaka City Corporation (DCC) until completing the legal procedures.
Detective Branch (DB) of Police arrested five men, allegedly involved in mugging and drug dealing, in two raids in the capital's Agargaon yesterday.
Eleven years have gone by, but the trials of the two cases over gruesome Ramna Batamul blasts on Pahela Baishakh are yet to be completed.
Nargis Akther, a 28-year-old housewife from Munshiganj, had flown to Abu Dhabi over a year ago with borrowed money, hoping that it would bring financial solvency to her family.
An accused in an arms case fled from the custody of police at a Metropolitan Sessions Judge's Court of Dhaka yesterday.
Different cultural organisations have taken preparation to celebrate Pahela Baishakh, first day of Bangla New Year, tomorrow in a festive mood in the capital.
Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid yesterday urged the Vice Chancellor (VC), Pro-VC of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet) and the Buet Teachers' Association to solve the ongoing problem together to ensure smooth academic activities of the university.
People must see the developments carried out by the local governments and the availability of public services so that they can be encouraged into paying taxes, said speakers at a conference yesterday.
The National Committee on the Conference of Cultural Diversity Ministerial Forum of the Asia-Pacific Region held a preparatory meeting ahead of the conference on Tuesday.
Different departments and cultural organisations at Rajshahi University are making their last-minute preparations to add diversity to the celebration of Bangla New Year 1419 tomorrow.
Four persons were electrocuted at Eskaton Garden, Karwan Bazar, Sabujbagh and South Keraniganj of the capital yesterday.
Students of Radiant School and College tested their knowledge on the history, culture, literature, traditions, and heritage of Chittagong through a contest yesterday.
National Aeronautics and Space Administration, (Nasa), USA would conduct an airborne scientific research on weather, climate and air quality of Bangladesh.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will make an hour-long stopover in Dhaka on Sunday on his way back home after visiting Japan.
The admission for BM Ed under National University (NU) for academic year 2012 (Jan-Dec) began on Thursday.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton greeted the Bangalee people across the world on the occasion of “Pahela Baishakh”, the first day of Bangla New Year.
The remains of Liberation War martyr Saifuddin Khaled Chowdhury were lifted from his grave at Pahartali in Raozan and sent to his birthplace at Dampara in the port city yesterday.
A woman was murdered allegedly by her close relatives at Mohisbathan in the city yesterday.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, now in Ankara on a three-day official visit to Turkey, visited the Anitkabir Mausoleum of Kemal Ataturk yesterday morning.
An old man was burnt alive while two tin-shade rooms were gutted in a fire in the port city yesterday afternoon.
Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) arrested one person with 1,500 pieces of Yaba tablets worth around Tk 6 lakh in his possession from Teknaf on Wednesday night.
A seminar on different essays written on the history, culture and geography of Chittagong will be held today in the port city.
The authorities of Chittagong University (CU) have chalked out various programmes to celebrate Pahela Baishakh, the first day of Bangla New Year1419, tomorrow.
The students of folklore department of Rajshahi University (RU) at a human chain programme on the campus yesterday urged the government to recruit the folklore students in jobs under special quota of the Public Service Commission (PSC).
A mobile court fined four eateries Tk 1.25 lakh in Enaet Bazar area under Kotwali Police Station in the port city yesterday on charge of selling and serving food items in unhygienic environment.
The three-day 'Boisabi' utsab (festival) marking the Bangla new year begin in Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) yesterday amid great enthusiasm and festivity.
The state-owned Daulatpur Jute Mills, which remained closed for over nine years, reopened yesterday.
At least six people were killed and nine others injured as lightning struck them in five districts yesterday.
A court here sentenced a youth to life term imprisonment yesterday for raping a girl who later committed suicide because of the disgrace.
English language fairs under English in Schools Programme, a joint initiative of The Daily Star and mobile operator Robi, were held for students of seven schools in Netrakona, Bogra, Satkhira and Cox's Bazar districts yesterday.
Hundreds of day labourers of Aditmari upazila yesterday demonstrated in the town demanding return of the money they paid to five people after they promised to arrange jobs for them.
Farmers have started harvesting of two early varieties of boro paddy in Sunamganj. Marking the occasion, they held a rally in Shulla upazila on Tuesday.
Criminals killed a doctor of Badalgachhi upazila health complex in Potnitola upazila of Naogaon district on Tuesday night.
There is acute shortage of trained and efficient drivers in the country. In Dhaka city alone some three hundred vehicles are added to the existing fleet every day. In keeping pace with this demand, the number of drivers is inadequate. Of course, there are a few private driving schools in Dhaka but they are not at all sufficient to cope with the growing demand.
From the The Daily Star report of 8 April 2012, we have learnt that malnutrition is the root cause of stunted growth in kids. Statistics say that Bangladesh is in the list of top ten countries with the large number of underweight children.
Nature got wet through the exquisite shower in the morning of 6th April. The morning raindrops fell on leaves and rejuvenated them. It appeared that a long night journey has not ended in another hot and sultry day. All woke up with a touch of tranquillity.
I never thought the day would come to write this; but, it seems that RAB has serious organisational as well as policy-related problems about its field operations. Without legal transparency, their very existence becomes invalid, since no one knows what exactly motivates RAB to fire--necessity or or something calculated ?
S. Islam's report on the above matter, published in your pages on March 28th. is very good news for the Ashuganj Power Plant. The managing director of the plant and his team of engineers and technicians deserve recognition and reward for their initiative and dedication for the excellent work.
Prior to coming to Houston, Texas, in the month of July 2011, we required to do some shopping. Back in Dhaka, as we happen to live near Bashundhara Shopping Complex, we preferred shopping at the mall.
An American soldier killed at least 16 Afghans, 9 of them were children. Deep down, most Americans see it as a revenge for the recent murder of six American trainers by an Afghan trainee.
Syrian troops yesterday mostly held their fire after a UN-backed ceasefire took effect at dawn, casting a silence over rebellious towns they had bombarded heavily in recent days.
A court in India yesterday sentenced 18 people to life imprisonment for the murder of Muslims in religious riots in Gujarat state 10 years ago.
Democracy and Islam can flourish together, David Cameron yesterday declared as he gave a landmark speech in Indonesia to tell the Muslim world that it can reject a "dead-end choice" between extremism and dictatorship.
Maoist rebels freed Italian tour guide Paolo Bosusco yesterday, almost a month after kidnapping him in a remote part of Orissa in what was believed to be the first seizure of a foreigner by the leftist guerrillas.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai said yesterday he might call an early presidential election to leave enough time for the new government to handle a planned security transition from US forces to Afghans.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad struck a defiant tone yesterday two days ahead of key atomic talks with major powers, saying the Islamic state would not surrender its nuclear rights "even under the most difficult pressure".
Indonesian authorities yesterday were hunting for 32 prisoners who were released temporarily during a tsunami alert triggered by a massive quake, a local police chief said.
Five people died and at least seven were injured as massive earthquakes struck off Indonesia's Sumatra island, officials said yesterday.
Ahmed Ben Bella, the first president of independent Algeria and one of the 20th century's most vocal anti-imperialists, died Wednesday at the age of 95.
South Korea's Ruling Conservatives yesterday won a parliamentary poll fought mostly on economic issues, with analysts saying voters opted for stability ahead of a presidential election in December.
US prosecutors have charged a neighborhood watchman with murdering an unarmed black teenager, a killing that sparked a tense nationwide discussion of race and criminal justice.
Arts & Entertainment
Samdani Art Foundation (SAF), in collaboration with Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) and Bangladesh National Museum (BNM), has organized the first Dhaka Art Summit (DAS). The four-day event kicked off yesterday at National Theatre Hall, BSA.
The complex relationship between poet Rabindranath Tagore and his sister-in-law Kadambari Devi remains in the realm of speculation. While it is well known that she was his companion and muse, much remains unsaid about whether the relationship was entirely innocent.
Around 1,000 artistes will perform in a chorus to usher in the first day of the Bengali year 1419, at a programme organised by Channel i and Shurerdhara. The programme will be held at the Bangabandhu International Conference Centre, today and tomorrow.
A day long traditional Kali fair was held on the banks of Dharla River at Kulaghat village under Lalmonirhat sadar upazila on Saturday.
Villagers, especially rural Hindus in Thakurgaon, are gearing up to observe Chaitra Shangkranti, the last day in the Bengali calendar.
After a series of successful screenings in January, “Runway”, the last film directed by the late filmmaker Tareque Masud, is being screened once again in various parts of North Bengal, says a press release. A two-day screening session began yesterday at Dinajpur Loko Bhaban Auditorium.
God doesn't play dice with the universe," said Albert Einstein when certain aspects of quantum theory ran counter to his belief in determinism. But he will turn over in his grave and give his hypothesis a second thought if he knows what happened in Korail slum last week, where god-like men played dice with 120,000 lives. They woke up on the wrong side of bed one morning, and decided to wreck some shanties for fun.
Indecent remarks of the politicians have become a subject of conversations in social gatherings these days, aside from the wide coverage in both print and electronic media. Referring to the recent indecent remarks of some opposition MPs in the Parliament, the prime minister said that she felt ashamed of the utterances of some women opposition parliamentarians. She said: "A gentle lady can't utter such words… I can't imagine that." No one will disagree with the PM on her assertions; but the question is, who should be role model for the politicians to follow in conducting their tongues in what to say and what not to say, be it within the House or outside.
Bush's stance: "Either you are with us or you are with them," is a disused currency in the contemporary world. Even coin collectors would trash it.
Few days back Bangladesh Bank approved the application for license of nine commercial banks: six from local entrepreneurs and the others from Non-Resident Bangladeshis. It gave rise to widespread debate, and the news media covered the issue significantly by giving both the positive and the critical statements. The main question was whether the new banks were necessary at all. There might be many opposing justifications but I will try to explain this issue on purely economic grounds.
Humour is all around, sometimes intentional.
Constantinople falls to the Crusaders of the Fourth Crusade, temporarily ending the Byzantine Empire.
The first ever digital exposition in Mymensingh ended on a promising note on April 9.
The cybersecurity community raked Apple Inc over the coals on Wednesday, saying the company had dragged its heels on eradicating malware that experts say may have infected up to 600,000 Macintosh computers and can be used to ferret out sensitive user information.
A day-long knowledge sharing session on 'Executing Commercial Contracts and Intellectual Property Rights' was held on Saturday at BASIS office in the capital.
Microsoft is counting down the days until it is through with the Windows XP operating system for personal computers.
HP's Imaging and Printing Group (IPG) has launched promotion to celebrate the Bangla New Year for their customers, says a press release.
Nomination submission for the prestigious mbillionth South Asia Award for 2012 has been extended to April 30, 2012.