News of: Saturday, 5th of May, 2012
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Bangladesh hopes Hillary Clinton's visit will take Dhaka's political, economic and security cooperation with Washington to a new height and clear the clouds that recently shrouded the ties over Nobel Laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus.
Indian Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, who is due in Dhaka tonight, will reassure the Bangladeshi political leadership that efforts are on towards a consensus within his country on Teesta water share treaty, diplomatic sources said.
A Bangladeshi Brac official was shot dead during an attack on a Brac provincial office in Ghor of Afghanistan Thursday morning.
Bangladesh's garment exports to India are increasing fast after the duty-waiver facility extended by the Indian government last year.
The ruling Awami League will take a tough stance if the BNP-led opposition parties enforce hartal or observe similar programmes against the government in the coming days.
The government's crackdown on BNP bigwigs seems to be helping bridge the gap that developed between the main opposition BNP and its key ally Jamaat-e-Islami after the last parliamentary polls.
Three children and two women were crushed under the wheels of a speeding train in Kalihati of Tangail Thursday night.
The disappearance of party leader Ilias Ali, government's treatment of the opposition and restoration of the caretaker government will feature in tonight's talks when the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton meets BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia.
The agitating teachers of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet) have decided in principle to withdraw their strike that brought to a halt the academic activities of the public university for the last one month.
Japan yesterday suggested that Bangladesh take effective anti-corruption measures for proper utilisation of its tax payers' money in development assistance programmes.
Three indigenous people were killed and at least 10 others injured in a clash between two groups of people in Manda upazila in Naogaon yesterday.
When upgrading of 30-kilometre road from Joydevpur to Mawna is suspended due to legal complications, progress made so far for upgrading the rest 57 kilometres of the Joydevpur-Mymensingh highway is very frustrating.
During the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's visit, Bangladesh will demand resolving some long-pending issues like duty-free access, GSP and Ticfa to remove trade barriers between the two countries.
A 97-year-old retired Australian dentist was to receive his masters degree in clinical science yesterday in what Southern Cross University said could make him the world's oldest new graduate.
The agitating students of Jahangirnagar University were in a hoax yesterday over the resignation of its vice-chancellor as the speculation spread all over the campus and beyond.
Four students of Jahangirnagar University during their fast-unto-death programme yesterday had to be hospitalised.
Up to 90% of school leavers in major Asian cities are suffering from myopia - short-sightedness - according to a study published yesterday.
Japanese Deputy Prime Minister Katsuya Okada's trip to Dhaka has proved useful in some distinct ways. For one thing, his visit has marked a renewal of contact between Japan and Bangladesh at a high level since Foreign Minister Taro Aso's visit to Dhaka in 2006. For another, it has cleared the air of any confusion over Japan's financing some of our important infrastructure projects.
Shipping Minister Shajahan Khan has come out in favour of amending existing laws to increase the penalty for river accidents. While we welcome such a step being taken, much needs to be done in other, more crucial areas, to bring about better safety measures.
Stuart Law will be leaving the country today, nearly two months ahead of schedule and a year before his contract expired with the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB).
While other participating teams are considering inaugural AFC U-22 Asian Cup as a platform for youth development, Bangladesh are indifferent about the importance of the second highest competition in Asia.
West Indies coach Ottis Gibson and captain Darren Sammy said Thursday they would have no problems with Chris Gayle returning to the squad after he promised to end his international exile on Thursday.
It is a measure of how much things have changed since the West Indies' glory days that the overwhelming feeling amongst home cricket fans ahead of their tour of England is sympathy.
Mick Newell, the Notting-hamshire director of cricket, has emerged as a possible candidate for the position of Tigers head coach.
Shakib Al Hasan, currently ranked as the world's best all-rounder in Test and ODI cricket, is poised to make a return to the county game.
The Chennai Super Kings came out on top against Deccan Chargers by 10 runs in their IPL clash at the MA Chidabaram Stadium in Chennai yesterday.
Pakistan fast bowler Mohammad Asif on Friday said there had been no evidence for his conviction in Britain for corruption and spot-fixing, a day after he was released following six months in prison.
French Prime Minister Francois Fillon said Friday he would review the case of a Bangladeshi boy who is France's under-12 chess champion and is threatened with expulsion because he lives here illegally.
The executive committee of Bangladesh Cycling Federation has been elected unopposed on Thursday after the election commission found no additional candidates against 21 posts including the president.
Sprint king Usain Bolt will run his first individual race of the Olympic season on Saturday when he lines up for the 100m at the Jamaica International Invitational at the national stadium.
Juan Martin del Potro made a strong start to his French Open preparations with a 6-1, 6-0 hammering of Portugal's Rui Machado to reach the quarterfinals of the Estoril Open on Thursday.
Former Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik has turned down approaches from county sides Hampshire and Essex, hoping for his possible inclusion in the Pakistan team for the Sri Lanka tour scheduled to start from June 1.
Veteran Australian batsman Michael Hussey, newly arrived in the Indian Premier League (IPL) to play for the defending champions, admitted Friday that he was struggling with the heat and humidity.
England's Ian Bell ended his near nine-month wait for a first-class century with an unbeaten hundred for Warwickshire on the second day of their rain-affected County Championship match against Durham on Thursday.
Juventus will be hoping their oldest rivals Inter Milan can do them a favour by winning their city derby against AC Milan on Sunday.
Arsene Wenger takes charge of his 900th game as Arsenal manager against Norwich on Saturday looking for the victory that will keep his side on course for Champions League qualification.
Much column inches have been spared in both foreign and local presses over the last week extolling the virtues of Pep Guardiola's Barcelona.
French striker Nicolas Anelka on Friday hinted that his former Chelsea teammate Didier Drogba would not be joining him at the Chinese club Shanghai Shenhua.
Wayne Rooney's stunning overhead kick in the Manchester derby in February 2011 has been voted as the greatest goal in the 20 seasons of the Premier League in a ballot of more than 300,000 fans.
Manchester United defender Phil Jones is refusing to concede defeat in the Premier League title race heading into the penultimate round of fixtures this weekend.
Delio Rossi on Friday apologised for attacking his own midfielder, Adem Ljajic, an act that saw him sacked as Fiorentina coach and hit with a three-month ban.
After Real Madrid celebrated their record 32nd La Liga title coach Jose Mourinho decided to take the opportunity to respond to critics who say his team plays too defensive and describe his style as "anti-football" compared to Barcelona's tiki-taka approach.
On this hartal day, I have decided to take advantage of slow traffic to wander around Dhaka by bicycle. I am hoping for clouds, but when I step outside at 10am, the sun is blazing hot.
Three people, including a college student, died and another student went missing as boats capsized in Narayanganj and Kishoreganj yesterday.
Nine students of Chittagong University (CU) of mathematics department were awarded with scholarships for their good results in examinations.
Police recovered the body of a schoolgirl from behind a bush at Charpolash village in Pakundia upazila yesterday morning.
Speakers at a roundtable demanded ensuring basic human rights of female prisoners in jails.
A strong stockmarket is an indicator of a strong economy and its development encourages entrepreneurships to lead national development, said Commerce Minister GM Quader on Thursday.
Unknown criminals strangled the driver of a microbus and snatched the vehicle from him at the capital's Khilkhet early yesterday.
The government has approved the Master Plan of the Haor Development Board and decided to protect the country's fish species by creating a fish sanctuary on 20 percent of jalmahals (water bodies) in haor areas.
Two rival groups clashed over a long-standing land dispute at Chandai village of Atghoria upazila Thursday night, leaving one man dead and at least 10 others injured.
The High Court has summoned the deputy commissioner and the police superintendent of Bandarban on charge of not giving protocol to a Supreme Court judge during his visit in the district last year.
The Special Security Force (SSF) detained a youth as he was trying to enter the prime minister's official residence of Gono Bhaban at Sher-e-Bangla Nagar yesterday.
Two school students were killed when struck by lightning at Amragasia village in Mathbaria upazila yesterday.
Overcome by her guilty conscience, a young girl went to see her boyfriend, whom she had allegedly stabbed for taking advantage of her with false promises of marriage, at Dhaka Medical College Hospital on Thursday only to be arrested by police.
Though the South East Asian region made remarkable progress in cutting maternal deaths, there is a huge lack in quality care for mothers in pre- and post-delivery periods, opined international experts on maternal and newborn care yesterday.
The 17-year-old mentally challenged girl, who was confined and tortured for around two months in a Jamalpur brothel, at last has been provided with legal aid by Bangladesh Manobadhikar Bastobayan Sangstha, a human rights organisation.
Protesting the arrival of US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, several left-leaning political organisations yesterday urged the masses to strengthen the ongoing movement against “the imperialistic aggression of United States”.
Environmentalists yesterday demanded the government's immediate and firm steps to stop India's National River Linking Project for the sake of Bangladesh's existence.
A 10-year-old schoolboy was burnt alive as a fire broke out in his house at Namachar village of Chilmari upazila Thursday night.
The Supreme Court has paved the way for the Anti-Corruption Commission to collect wealth statement of Syeda Iqbalmand Banu, the mother-in-law of BNP Senior Vice Chairman Tarique Rahman.
A mobile court sentenced two years of imprisonment to six people each for making fake certificates in the capital's Uttara on Thursday.
North Bengal Sugar Mills will observe "the Gopalpur massacre day" today in memories of its then administrator Lt Md Anwarul Azim and his some 200 colleagues, who were slaughtered by Pakistani army on this day at the Gopalpur mill during the Liberation War of 1971.
Police yesterday recovered the body of a schoolteacher, also owner of a brick kiln, from a maize field near his house yesterday morning.
A farmer was killed by his rivals at Char Anandipur village in the sadar upazila yesterday afternoon.
A three-day quiz competition and workshop on information technology begins at 17 residential halls of Dhaka University today, aiming to aware students on the latest breakthroughs in science and technology.
The body of an elderly man was recovered from a temple at Mohanpur village in Birganj upazila yesterday morning.
An elder sister of a college girl was injured by a stalker as she protested stalking her sister at Aponpara in the town on Thursday noon.
Police arrested three young arms traders in Ishwardi upazila yesterday and seized two firearms and ammunition from their possession.
A documentary film on poet, folklorist and novelist Dr Ashraf Siddiqui titled "Jibon-Sangskritir Jalchhobi" will be premiered at the seminar room of Nabab Nawab Ali Chowdhury Senate Bhaban of Dhaka University at 3:00pm today.
Just when life had started to bloom for him, 26-year-old Masud Rana found out that both of his kidneys were damaged.
Narayan Chandra Das, a freedom fighter, passed away at Chittagong Medical College Hospital (CMCH) due to cardiac arrest yesterday morning at the age of 67.
Today is the second death anniversary of Rowshan Ara Begum, a retired assistant professor of Dhaka University Laboratory High School and College.
Thousands of Syrians rallied yesterday, braving regime gunfire to show their determination to oust Bashar al-Assad, as the office of international envoy Kofi Annan said his peace plan is "on track."
Saudi King Abdullah yesterday ordered the return of the kingdom's ambassador to Egypt and the reopening of the mission after it was shut last week in the wake of angry protests, state news agency SPA said.
UN leader Ban Ki-moon on Thursday led international outrage at the growing number of journalist killings, as the bodies of two dead photographers were found in Mexico on World Press Freedom Day.
Japan is set to go without nuclear energy for the first time since 1970 from today, when the last operating reactor shuts down for maintenance, heightening fears of a looming power crunch this summer.
A teenage suicide bomber targeted police in a bustling Pakistan town square yesterday, killing at least 24 people and wounding dozens in the tribal area near the Afghan border, officials said.
A court in India has convicted nine people of burning three people to death in their home during the religious riots in Gujarat state 10 years ago.
Queen Elizabeth II is probably the most well-travelled monarch ever. She has been to 116 countries on official state visits as Queen, but not Greece. Why?
Socialist Francois Hollande was on track to defeat right-wing incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy as France saw the final day of campaigning yesterday before its presidential election run-off.
Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservative Party yesterday took a bashing in mid-term local elections, capping a bad month for the government after Britain slid back into recession.
A double car bombing in Russia's troubled North Caucasus killed at least 14 people and injured more than 120 just days before Vladimir Putin returns to the Kremlin, officials said yesterday.
The United States yesterday said that China has agreed to let blind activist Chen Guangcheng and his family leave the country soon, raising hopes of a resolution to a damaging diplomatic crisis.
Arts & Entertainment
Tania Ahmed began her career as a TVC model and gradually earned recognition as an able actress. Tania recently spoke to The Daily Star (TDS) about her work and plans. Excerpts from the interview:
Padatik Natya Sangsad Bangladesh premiered its latest production “Shey” at the National Theatre Hall, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy, on May 3. An adaptation of a Rabindranath Tagore story for children, with the same title, the play has been directed by Debashish Ghosh.
Yesterday (May 4) marked the 29th death anniversary of educationist and writer Abul Fazal. Fazal was born in 1903 in the village of Keochia, under Satkania upazila of Chittagong. After initial schooling at a madrassah, he completed his BA from Dhaka University in 1928. In 1931, he did his BT from Teachers' Training College in Dhaka. He completed a Master's degree in Bangla Language and Literature from Calcutta University in 1940. Fazal initially began his career as an imam before starting to teach. In 1941 he joined Krishnanagar College as a lecturer of Bangla. In 1943 he was transferred to Chittagong College from where he retired as a professor in 1956. In 1973 he was made Vice-Chancellor of Chittagong University. In 1975 he joined the advisory council of the Government of Bangladesh as member in-charge of education and culture, but resigned on June 23 in 1977.
Alliance Française de Dhaka in association with Indira Gandhi Cultural Centre, High Commission of India, Dhaka organised a kathak dance recital by ICCR (Indian Council for Cultural Relations) empanelled, accomplished French dancer Isabelle Anna at La Gallerie, Alliance Française de Dhaka on May 3.
Indian National Award winning Bollywood actress Vidya Balan will now appear in a role dedicated to a social cause. She has been appointed the brand ambassador of India's Rural Development Ministry to spread awareness about sanitation and cleanliness in the country whose 60 percent of the 1.1 billion population still practice open defecation.
It would appear that the Bangladesh polity is going to experience more political confrontations in the run-up to the next general election, thus causing severe inconvenience for all segments of the population including the law-enforcers. Political thinkers, who are reputed for their time and space-transcending relevance, have pointed to the inevitable insecurity and suffering consequent upon political instability.
India and Pakistan are seldom on the same page. Partly, it is because they carry the baggage of tragic history and partly because they have no trust in each other. Above all, there is a general perception in India that since the army is a decisive factor in the affairs of Pakistan, it is not possible to foster any meaningful relationship until it becomes a democratic polity in the real sense. In fact, from the time General Mohammad Ayub Khan took over the reins of Pakistan in 1958, India has assumed that normalcy between the two countries is not achievable.
The US Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton, is to visit three Asian countriesChina, India and Bangladeshfrom May 3 and is scheduled reach Bangladesh May 5. The visit is a long-waited one and is to be welcomed.
Bangladesh has been of little relevance in the past to the US. However the rapid changes in the global landscape and Bangladesh's geographical location is being considered to be of strategic interest to the pentagon and state department.
Today is the International Day of the Midwife! You might wonder, what is a "midwife?" And, why is there even a special international day celebrating them? I will explain, but before I do that, let me first talk about something totally different: airplane pilots!
Kublai Khan becomes ruler of the Mongol Empire.
Most of the rivers of Bangladesh flow from north to south, silting up the mangroves delta and draining into the Bay of Bengal. The mangrove is a transitional territory between the freshwater rivers originating from the Ganges and the Bay of Bengal. The ecosystems of Sundarban react with the increase of salt concentrations. The environmental parameters with the direct influences on Sundarbans in terms of global climate change are sea-level rise, natural calamities like cyclones, rising temperature, salinity and drought. Salinity is more devastating than any other parameter in this territory. It is very difficult to manage salinity because of the lasting nature of its effects on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.
Sylhet Division, in general, is marked for its variance in the nature, topography and geography with resource rich and spectacular sites. Sunamganj -- a remote district of Sylhet Division, is circumscribed by low, somewhere high and somewhere serpentile hills on northern and eastern boundaries of the country which conspicuously brand this region as a district of distinct and panoramic view. Sunamganj is specially featured for the panoramic, fantastic and divine wetland commonly and popularly known as “Tangua Haor” widely and commonly extolled and admired for its rich cultural background, sophisticated flora and fauna, unique bio-diversity, extra-ordinary ecological system.
William Radice is an English poet with nine volumes of poems to his credit. To readers of Bengali literature, however, he is best known as a translator of Rabindranath Tagore. Interestingly though, it was Madhusudan Dutta that he first took a keen interest in, what with the epic poet's masterly as well as creative combination of west and east. Ever since he studied the canonical Bengali epic as part of his post-graduate studies, he nurtured the hope of translating it so that the whole world could know that what a Bengali poet in the nineteenth century had accomplished in the form of an epic is no less creative, temperate and masterly than any other internationally acclaimed epic. Gradually he finished his translation, which was published by Penguin India in 2010. Radice paid a visit to Bangladesh in February 2012 to celebrate the 150th birth anniversary of Tagore. During his visit, he along with a panel of artistes gave a reading of selected extracts from both the epic's original Bengali and his translated versions, which altogether assumed the shape of more a performance than a reading. Rifat Munim spent time talking with Radice about different aspects of the epic.
Not once did Payam take his eyes off the manuscript while reading. And then his ocean blue eyes looked into Theia's brown gaze holding the quiet moment steady. Putting the papers aside, he said, 'Do you realize you are narrating the story in present tense?'
Bangladesh has been experiencing a significant surge in the number of diabetics. Although epidemic, there was no national guideline for diabetes management. However, the common clinical guideline in local context was crucial to guide physicians to deal with rapidly shifting paradigm of diabetes management and to ensure optimal care. Realising the issue, Endocrine Society of Bangladesh and Diabetic Association of Bangladesh with the support from Sanofi-aventis have formulated a guideline for Bangladesh recently.
Each year, some 15 million babies in the world, more than one in 10 births, are born too early, according to the recent released report Born too soon: the global action report on preterm birth. Bangladesh is among the 10 countries with the greatest numbers (424100) of preterm births.
The food and nutrition practices in the early years of life of a child determine his/her physical growth and mental development and it cannot be compensated later. The national strategy on infant and young child feeding is formulated to promote proper care through appropriate feeding. However, the awareness is still low among general population.
Kidneys are important organ of the human body. They help to filter by-products and toxins from the blood and preserve the balance of bodily fluids and electrolytes.
Up to 90% of school leavers in major Asian cities are suffering from myopia, a study suggests.
Older women may be able to boost their muscle strength by adding fish oil supplements to their exercise routine, a clinical trial suggests published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Residents of Middle Halishahar of Chittagong city are facing a tremendous water crisis because three private drinking water companies have been extracting most of the groundwater of the area for the last three years.
A court here yesterday sent Lt Col (sacked) Zulfiqar Ali Majumder, former commanding officer of Rab-7, to jail in connection with a robbery case filed with Anwara Police Station.
A worker died when a large iron plate fell on him at a ship breaking yard in Sitakunda upazila in Chittagong Thursday evening.
Amajor arms race in Asia is going on without any furor anywhere. As India test fires an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of carrying a nuclear warhead keeping a close attention to China's military trend, it makes a major advance in its defense capabilities. Pakistan subsequently tested Hatf IV (Shaheen 1A) ballistic missile with a range of 2,500 to 3,000 kilometers, which would put almost all of India within reach. Shortly after that, India launched a rocket and put into orbit a microwave Radar Imaging Satellite (Risat-1). The security analysts ask if a new door opens for a new arms race in South Asia. The Agni-V missile fired by India has a range of 5,000km which would give India the capability to strike most major cities in China, Iran and South-East Asia. The word Agni comes from Sanskrit language which means 'fire,' the name given to a series of weapons India developed as part of its highly integrated guided missile upgrading project launched in 1983. V K Saraswat, the head of India's Defense Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) which built the missile said, "I am announcing the successful launch of Agni V… making history and making our country proud in the area of missile technology." He also said that India is now a "missile power." The Indian security analysts considered it as a big moment for them as they see it as a major step to India's effort to become a regional power that can counter China's influence in South Asia.
The drama unfolding in Arab world resembles a classic tragedy. The fear part is that a bunch of weakened, nearly-failed countries in the Middle East and North Africa would be a severe strategic threat for the regional and international orders. In most cases when Arab Spring-inspired demonstrations erupted, the natural inclination of most of the regimes was to repress them with decisive force. But there were restraints. The death toll has consequently remained below the threshold that might necessitate international action, while the atrocities which include torture, mutilations and rape have been conducted in a manner that enables plausible deniability. Despite some protestations to the contrary, these atrocities are not incidental or mistakes but are an integral part of the regime's modus operandi. The international community was now better informed of the regime's actions, and it was capable of taking forceful corrective measures. While the diplomatic course has proven futile, moral and political clarity on the part of the transatlantic alliance may require some operational ambiguity.
A report from the official Chinese news agency Xinhua in Beijing on May 2 stated that, "It is informed here Wednesday that Chen Guangcheng, a native from Yinan County of eastern China's Shandong Province, entered the US Embassy in Beijing in late April and left of his own volition after staying there for six days."
Star Books Review
For those who have remained focused on Bangladesh's history, particularly as it shaped up in the years after the partition of India in 1947, Justice Muhammad Ibrahim will always be a point of ready reference. It has been suggested, and not without reason, that a good deal of what came to be known as the Six Point programme of the Awami League in the mid-1960s was essentially what Ibrahim had stressed during his time in the political limelight. The judge was by no means a political figure nor did he have any pretensions to being one, but that he was deeply concerned about the future of constitutional politics in Pakistan has never been in any doubt. He was law minister in Field Marshal Ayub Khan's martial law regime, which in itself could turn into a question of why someone of Ibrahim's stature (he had been an academic and had served as vice chancellor of Dacca University) should have been part of such an extra-constitutional structure at all. The answer is simple: like so many others at the time, Justice Ibrahim believed a new, properly democratic era could indeed be inaugurated by Ayub Khan.
Philip Hensher speaks as a young boy growing up in Bangladesh. He assumes the voice of a young Muslim boy fiercely observant of his surroundings at the onset of the birth of a new nation.