News of: Friday, 18th of May, 2012
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Upset at the Awami League's unilateral decisions on crucial issues, the other components of the AL-led ruling alliance are unwilling to take the blame for the government's failure on different fronts.
The BNP-led alliance observed its countrywide dawn-to-dusk hartal in a rather relaxed way yesterday.
Prof Shariff Enamul Kabir has finally stepped down as vice-chancellor of Jahangirnagar University, ending a months-long standoff and unrest on the campus.
Jahangirnagar University has sent a rejoinder to a news item published in The Daily Star headlined "JU caught in a VC-ious web" on May 10.
Bangladesh Petroleum Exploration & Production Company Ltd (Bapex) has determined, through a seismic survey, presence of around 150 million barrels of oil in old gas fields of Kailashtila and Haripur in Sylhet.
The shipping ministry has been playing a dubious role in demolishing two “unauthorised” concrete jetties of Shah Cement factory in Munshiganj for the last two days while the inland water transport authority has taken a defiant stance about carrying on with the legal action.
Teachers of 24,000 non-government registered primary schools yesterday declared indefinite closure of schools from June 16, if the government failed to regularise their jobs.
The Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry yesterday opposed amnesty for black money that is legalised with a flat tax.
The Daily Star and DHL Express, the world's leading logistic company, will today honour the country's best businesses and the people most successful.
City commuters will have no immediate respite from acute shortage of taxicabs as the two companies licensed to introduce 2,000 new vehicles by December last year are still uncertain about the import.
The Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha (Rajuk) is taking around Tk 28 crore extra from the plot winners of the extended Uttara residential town through verbal communication and without any official announcement.
An amendment to the Indian Constitution is being drafted to enable the exchange of 111 Indian enclaves in Bangladesh and 51 Bangladeshi enclaves in Indian territory, External Affairs Minister SM Krishna has said.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday urged the main opposition BNP to pursue the path of democracy, leaving behind its “destructive” way of politics.
Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore continues to evoke fascination and interest among Chinese, 88 years after his visit to the nation, as 50 of his popular songs were translated for the first time into Mandarin with music notes closely resembling the original.
A Kishoreganj court yesterday sentenced a truck driver to 10 years rigorous imprisonment and fined him Tk 5 thousand, in default to suffer six more months in jail, for killing two people in a road accident 19 years back.
Proceedings of four cases with the two international crimes tribunals yesterday were put on hold until Sunday, as the defence and three of the accused could not be present due to the general strike enforced by the opposition.
A popular antibiotic used for treating bronchitis, pneumonia, ear infections and sexually transmitted diseases may boost the risk of death, a US study said Wednesday.
Two Russians and an American joined three colleagues aboard the International Space Station yesterday for a mission that should include receiving the orbiter's first visit from a private spacecraft.
Nato's rush to get out of a "quagmire" in Afghanistan risks the collapse of the state and strategic failure for the Western alliance in its decade-long war, a former EU adviser has warned.
Thirty three senior leaders of the BNP and its alliance partners are in jail in connection with an arson case having been denied bail by a magistrate court in Dhaka on Thursday. The decision of the magistrate, though questionable in the sense of overall administration of justice, has apparently been taken following due process of law.
Thanks to irregular practices resorted to by the bulk of our private recruitment agencies, for years thousands of Bangladeshi workers serving in various international labour markets have had to suffer. The suffering was not limited to having to pay three or even four times what it normally cost to send a worker to a foreign labour market; there was constant danger of being swindled, or even worse trafficked and left to rot in a jail in some foreign land.
A brace from Twum Frank helped Abahani consolidate their lead in the Grameenphone Bangladesh League with a 2-0 win over minnows Arambagh KS at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.
Shivnarine Chanderpaul prevented another complete West Indies collapse on the first day of the first Test here on Thursday as England's Stuart Broad enjoyed yet more success at Lord's.
During the four-day screening camp at the National Cricket Academy Ground over May 12-15, it was evident that the 50 boys selected (from around 9,000) that had shown up from various parts of the country had the passion and dedication required to become a cricketer.
The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) announced a 27-member preliminary squad yesterday for the tour of Zimbabwe in June.
The dormitory of the National Sports Council, the old building of NSC, is generally used to accommodate athletes ahead of any tournaments, championships or training programmes. But the leaders of the District and Divisional Organisers' Association (DOA) have made it their own accommodation after occupying five to six rooms.
Injured pacer Rubel Hossain will undergo an arthroscopy today in South Africa.
Holder Novak Djokovic staged a 4-6, 6-2, 6-3 comeback over Argentine Juan Monaco to earn a place in the quarterfinals at a windy Rome Masters on Thursday.
Kings XI Punjab severely dented the chances of Chennai Super Kings qualifying for the play-offs and kept themselves in the reckoning with a convincing six-wicket win in the Indian Premier League (IPL) at the picturesque HPCA Stadium here on Thursday.
Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan faced a police probe and a lifetime ban from Mumbai's main cricket stadium on Thursday following a furious late-night row with staff at the ground, officials said.
Chris Gayle smashed yet another century as Royal Challengers Bangalore got the better of table-toppers Delhi Daredevils by 21 runs to keep their chances of making the play-offs alive.
They are supposed to concentrate on the boards but they have been busy electing the leaders of the Bangladesh Chess Federation (BCF) after adopting a single platform ahead of the May 31 polls.
The organisers who had earlier confirmed the arrival of a World XI to play two matches in Pakistan have postponed the two Twenty20s and will now work with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on revised dates.
Subhrajit Das continued his good form, making his second hundred as the visiting CAB Under-15 tightened their grip on Bangladesh Under-15 on the second day of the three-day match at Sheikh Abu Naser Stadium in Khulna yesterday.
Victoria Club registered their first win in the Colonel Malek Smriti Premier Cricket League when they defeated Dashara Nabajagaran Sangsad (DNS) by four wickets at Shahid Mirza Tapan Stadium yesterday.
India's World Cup hero Yuvraj Singh hopes to return to cricket in "three to four months" after recovering from a cancerous tumour, media reports said on Thursday.
Didier Drogba has vowed to make amends for his Moscow misery by ending Chelsea's long wait to be crowned kings of Europe in Saturday's Champions League final against Bayern Munich.
World Cup-winning coach Marcello Lippi was unveiled as the new coach of Chinese champions Guangzhou Evergrande on Thursday, in the latest sign of the Super League's growing financial clout.
Striker Carlos Tevez insisted Wednesday he would not apologise to Sir Alex Ferguson after waving a mocked-up tombstone of the Manchester United boss during Manchester City's Premier League title celebrations.
Controversial QPR midfielder Joey Barton accepted a charge of violent conduct on Wednesday but denied another one arising out of last Sunday's Premier League clash with Manchester City.
Spanish giants Barcelona are setting up a football school in India as they expand their coaching network worldwide with the aim of training 10,000 youngsters in the next three years.
Portuguese referee Pedro Proenca will take charge of this weekend's Champions League final between Chelsea and Bayern Munich, UEFA announced on Thursday.
Manchester United have called time on Michael Owen's Old Trafford career after the striker revealed on Thursday that he would not be offered a new contract by the club.
FC Barcelona's Brazilian star Dani Alves is expected to be out of action for up to two months after undergoing surgery on Wednesday on a broken collarbone, the Spanish club announced.
The country's apex trade body yesterday urged the government to allow local entrepreneurs to invest abroad to help them exploit the opportunities opening outside the country.
The amount of default loans increased by Tk 2,645 crore or 11.68 percent in public, private and foreign commercial banks in the first quarter of 2012.
Work for upgrading Shahjalal International Airport will start in a couple of months with Danish funds, but it will leave out some vital parts of the original project due to fund shortage.
State-owned Ashuganj Power Station Company Ltd yesterday signed a deal with a consortium of Sweden and Spain to set up a 450 MW gas-fired combined cycle power plant.
Banglalink's revenue rose 19 percent to Tk 1,070 crore in the first quarter, compared to the same period a year ago.
The SME Foundation yesterday lent Tk 5 crore to Midas Financing Ltd, which will provide low-cost and mortgage-free credit to small and medium entrepreneurs in the light engineering sector.
Global banking giant HSBC said Thursday that it has so far slashed $2.0 billion of costs in the first year of its ambitious plans to axe a total of $3.5 billion.
The government should allow investment of undisclosed money in all sectors in the next fiscal year with a flat tax to boost new investments and create new jobs, said the chief of a platform of tax lawyers yesterday.
Stocks declined yesterday as investors remained sceptical in an environment of political protests and the incomplete hearing of writ petitions.
The insurance regulator has taken a move to stop misuse by companies in the name of immovable properties.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said her party had restored the dignity and image of the country that it had lost after the assassination of Father of the Nation and the most of his family members.
Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) President Zainul Abedin yesterday said the country's judiciary cannot function properly and independently due to interference of the government.
The government would finalise the biosafety rules within a few weeks restricting use of genetically modified organism to protect environment and human health, said Law Minister Shafique Ahmed yesterday.
Teachers of 24,000 non-government registered primary schools yesterday declared indefinite closure of schools from June 16, if the government failed to regularise their jobs.
Terming Bangladesh a country of immense strength and opportunities, a visiting three-member Kuwaiti delegation, arriving on a three-day visit yesterday, expressed the desire to invest more in the coming days.
A case was filed with a Rajshahi court on Wednesday accusing the vice chancellor, pro-vice chancellor and seven other officials of Rajshahi University of being involved in recruitment irregularities over two sports officer posts.
Bangladesh has registered notable successes in the struggle against terrorism through determined leadership and visionary policies, a senior UN official said yesterday.
A Dhaka court yesterday granted bail to BNP Joint Secretary General Ruhul Kabir Rizvi in a case filed for cocktail explosion inside the Bangladesh Secretariat during the April 29 hartal.
A Joydevpur-bound passenger train derailed near Ishwardi Railway Station yesterday morning, leaving up to 10 injured after the engine and three carriages veered off the tracks.
Korea International Cooperation Agency (Koica) will train 12 Bangladeshi officials in rural development strategies in Korea from May 17 to June 2, says a press release.
Nine people, including two of a family, were killed and five others injured in separate road accidents in Habiganj, Gazipur, Dinajpur and Kishoreganj yesterday.
A Dhaka court yesterday granted bail to three persons, including Destiny-2000 Ltd Chairman and Boishakhi Media Ltd Managing Director Rafiqul Amin, in connection with a fraud case.
Armed robbers looted valuables worth Tk 10 lakh from the house of an expatriate at village Chhota Khurma in Biswanath upazila early yesterday.
Expressing concern over the present situation of human trafficking from Bangladesh, US Ambassador Dan W Mozena urged the government to take strong steps against the offence, a gross human rights violation.
A youth was beaten to death at Shahidnagar Beribandh in Chwak Bazar area of the capital yesterday.
Customs officials seized a container full of synthetic fabrics at Chittagong port on Wednesday evening as the goods were getting delivered by using fake documents.
Bangladesh Public Service Commission (PSC) has postponed the objective test for selection of candidates as sub-registrars at the Directorate of Registration under the Ministry of Law Justice and Parliamentary Affairs due to unavoidable circumstances.
President of Chittagong Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI), Murshed Murad Ibrahim, yesterday sought the prime minister's intervention in speeding up the construction of the four-lane Dhaka Chittagong highway.
Five persons, including two children, went missing, as two boats capsized due to violent winds in Tanguar haor of Tahirpur upazila, Sunamganj yesterday morning.
A man who allegedly cheated people by impersonating a customs officer was arrested from his New Eskaton residence in the capital on Wednesday by Detective Branch (DB) of Chittagong Metropolitan Police (CMP).
A three-day inter-university cultural festival began at Chittagong University of Engineering and Technology (Cuet) yesterday.
Valuables worth around Tk 2 lakh were gutted in a fire inside an office at Professor Market in Chittagong city's Tamakumondi Lane yesterday.
Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) recovered two locally made guns and two bullets, raiding Jhumchhara village under the sadar upazila of Cox's Bazar yesterday.
Jahangir Alam, executive director of Bangladesh Bank (BB), died of cardiac arrest in Istanbul, Turkey yesterday at the age of 56, said an official.
A doa and milad mahfil on the occasion of the first anniversary of death of Begum Rowshan Ara Zubaida Khanam, wife of senior counsel Justice TH Khan and mother of former member of parliament Afzal H Khan, will be held today (Friday).
Criminals torched a betel leaf plantation at Saihati village in Kaliganj upazila of the district on Wednesday night.
The project manager of Sandhani Life Insurance Company at Aampatti in the district town, earlier picked up by police for his alleged cheating of hundreds of depositors with the company, was sent to jail yesterday.
Men allegedly belonging to the ruling party assaulted and robbed Jitendra Nath Roy, Baufal upazila correspondent of the daily Samokal, and gave death threat to Mizanur Rahman, the same upazila correspondent of the daily Prothom Alo, on Wednesday night.
Two people were killed and six others injured in an attack over a land dispute at Baraigram upazila in Natore yesterday.
Two housewives were tortured allegedly by their husbands for dowry at two villages in Kalapara upazila in a week.
Members of Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) rescued 16 people, including three women and a child, yesterday while they were being trafficked to India through Putkhali Border.
Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation (BIWTC) will resume ferry service on Kazirhat-Paturia route today (Friday), after a hiatus of three and a half years.
The law enforcers arrested four people along with a firearm and six lethal weapons in Tangail and Sherpur districts yesterday and the day before.
Every government or political party talks about the betterment of the farmers but does not look into their problems deeply to really solve it. Moreover, it has become a popular style of the politicians and the leaders of many organisations to speak for minimising the plight of the farmers but in reality they do nothing.
On May 12, 2012 Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina asked the people to elect her in the next general election so that she can win over the dispute of maritime boundary with India. But people are more concerned about the present disturbing issues which the government has failed to settle with India. These are: Teesta water sharing deal, Tipaimukh dam, and killing of Bangladeshis by BSF. Indian External Affairs Minister SM Krishna said that the Teesta deal has to wait as India is trying to develop a political consensus.
A detailed report was published in your front page on 10th May about the frustrating example of in-house politics of the ruling party extending its vicious tentacles into the JU campus. It is a sad and sordid affair initiated by the JU management, as reported. They are virtually running a dictatorship, come what may.
A few days back Syed Ashraful Islam, an influential minister in the cabinet, launched a scathing attack on Dr Muhammad Yunus and undermined his pioneering work in micro-credit and his winning the Nobel peace prize. The minister did so in presence of the prime minister. What is really shocking is that the PM a few months back recommended Dr Yunus as the president of the World Bank for his achievements in micro-credit and women empowerment. Any opinion of a minister in a public platform should be considered the government's opinion. I beg to ask whether the PM's recommendation of Prof. Yunus as a candidate for World Bank presidency was real. Syed Ashraf's comment was instigated by Hillary Clinton's opinion that the US government hopes that Bangladesh government would not interfere with the Grameen Bank's activities. Dr Yunus is one of our very few global ambassadors and it is really disheartening to see that the current government is undermining the very individual who brought immense fame and goodwill to Bangladesh instead of giving him the recognition he so much deserves.
LGRD and Cooperatives Minister Syed Ashraful Islam has said that Dr Yunus having worked in economics and receiving a Nobel prize in peace is proof enough that something is really wrong. This may sound very convincing to the general mass. We are a very gullible nation and a population deeply divided into two camps.
Our country has attained uniqueness in many respects. It is the only country in the world where:
The result of the SSC examination is finally published. Some students are overjoyed, some are not. Pundits are debating if the higher pass rate reflects the increasing quality of education. As I was standing near the newspaper stall waiting for my bus and browsing the newspapers, I remembered one facebook post: "Only female students sat for SSC exams this year." Right after the SSC examinations began, someone posted the front pages of the major newspapers on Facebook, all of which had the pictures of girl students attending the examination.
The World Bank has cancelled the loan for constructing the Padma Bridge because Bangladesh government did not take any action against the greedy elements which came to power for swallowing public money. Padma Bridge if constructed could have benefited millions of people for millions of years saving millions of hours of travelling. We the Bangladeshi people are born with poor luck and so we have no right to dream about something new or modern and we are destined to remain poor!
It is heartening to learn that as part of the new Open Access Policy, the World Bank has made all its research data and publications accessible to everyone. They have just 'Creative Common'ed all their publications' in a new Open Knowledge Repository. Under this privilege, anyone can distribute, reuse, and build upon the bank's published works, even commercially, as long as the bank is given credit for the original creation.
Opposition top shots in jail
Court terms charges against 33 leaders non-bailable; violence erupts; hartal called for today
(May 17, 2012)
US plans for a possible military strike on Iran are ready and the option is "fully available", the US ambassador to Israel said, days before Tehran resumes talks with world powers which suspect it of seeking to develop nuclear arms.
Injecting a new element in the presidential race, BJD and AIADMK appeared to be coming together to sponsor NCP leader and former Lok Sabha Speaker PA Sangma as a candidate in the coming presidential election.
Syrian National Council chief Burhan Ghalioun yesterday said he is resigning to avert divisions within the opposition bloc, after activists on the ground accused him of monopolising power.
Syria remains the top destination for Iranian arms shipments in violation of a U.N. Security Council ban on weapons exports by the Islamic Republic, according to a confidential report on Iran sanctions-busting seen by Reuters on Wednesday.
President Barack Obama yesterday picked Myanmar envoy Derek Mitchell as the first US ambassador to the country for more than 20 years, in a step marking the restoration of full diplomatic relations.
UN members yesterday took their first steps in a marathon to negotiate a new global pact by 2015 that for the first time will place rich and poor under a common legal regime to tackle climate change.
A caretaker technocrat government took office in Greece yesterday to organise the cash-strapped country's second elections in just six weeks after an inconclusive May 6 vote jolted the eurozone.
China, which is locked in a dispute with major trading partners over its control of rare earth minerals, yesterday announced additional export quotas for this year.
The war crimes trial of former Bosnian Serb army chief Ratko Mladic was abruptly halted yesterday, just a day after it opened, because of prosecution "irregularities" in the high-profile case.
Bulgaria's parliament has adopted a total ban on smoking in indoor public places, after earlier attempts failed due to strong opposition from restaurant owners.
Ethnic rebels in the far north of Myanmar have urged the United Nations to send observers to monitor fighting with government troops, a Kachin Independence Organisation (KIO) official said yesterday.
Nepal's Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai on Wednesday added seven more ministers to his cabinet, increasing its size to 19, a day after the major political parties reached an agreement on the contentious issues for the new constitution.
Dissident Chen Guangcheng said yesterday that he and his family had completed passport applications and officials said they should be ready within 15 days.
A new Haitian government lead by Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe officially began its duties Wednesday, capping a months-long political vacuum in the troubled nation.
Arts & Entertainment
Emon Saha has followed the footsteps of his father -- the great composer Satya Saha -- to become one of the leading composers and film music directors of our time. Famed for creating many popular tunes, Emon Saha's creativity got a boost from his training under the iconic A.R. Rahman.
Eminent painter Safiuddin Ahmed has been on life support at the city's Square Hospital since Tuesday (May 15) evening. He has been ailing from old age complications. He is 89.
It took no less than a live camel strolling the promenade in Cannes to steal the show on the film festival's opening day, a feat that comedian Sacha Baron Cohen pulled off with chutzpah on Wednesday.
Two men in a stick dance on Kolkata's famous Maidan, a lawn tennis party poses, buildings lit up on a side of Lal Dighi (now called Benoy Badal Dinesh Bagh) in Kolkata to celebrate the visit of British King George V in 1912, a hairdresser giving a haircut on Strand Road, a crowded riverside at Chandpal Ghat as a ship arrives, a Muharram procession through a crowded street…
Thirst for revenge on father's killer mingles with love for the murderer's daughter, a typical theme in popular plays/movies. Based on this clichéd story, Desh Bangla Theatre brought a new play on the stage. Titled “Kongkal O Sharey Tin Haath”, the play premiered at the Experimental Theatre Hall, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy, on May 16. Written by Rashidul Islam, the play has been directed by Mehedi Tanjir.
Publication ceremony of the school magazine 'Kantabotee' was held at the
Sohel Taj was once a parliament member, and he also was the state minister for home. Then he chose to be neither, erasing his political footprints in that exact order. First he resigned from the ministry and then from the parliament. He even went away so far out that he left the country to show he meant business. But like a sea that washes back garbage thrown into it, the protocol he gave up keeps coming back to him. So does his salary paid in arrears that are deposited in his account for doing a job he stopped doing. I say, the son of the first prime minister of Bangladesh is jinxed. He is trapped in Hotel California.
Rather than fighting terrorism, Pakistani judges and journalists are pursuing political vendettas against an elected government.
Not even a week has passed since the prime minister beamed a certain geniality towards the opposition but here we are now pushed to the throes of a deeper uncertainty.
People's welfare is the ultimate objective of democratic governance. Economic, socio-political, rights based, peace and conflict resolution policies and strategies at the national and international levels are futile unless they address the basic requirements of the people. Democratic governance at the national level should identify the most effective instruments and ways to attain that goal in a sustainable manner.
On April 18, there was a news item on the front page of some newspapers, which, to my mind, could have been a banner headline item.
Vasco da Gama reaches the port of Calicut, India.
Google on Wednesday began making its search engine smarter, in what the internet giant called a major upgrade that looks beyond query words to figure out what people are actually seeking online.
Apple Inc plans to use a larger screen on the next-generation iPhone and has begun to place orders for the new displays from suppliers in South Korea and Japan, people familiar with the situation said on Wednesday.
Ankur ICT Development Foundation (AIDF), a non-profitable organisation, recently arranged a day-long training program for teachers of computer education of high schools and colleges.
Kaspersky Lab introduced Kaspersky tablet security in Bangladesh, says a press release.
Finnish mobile game developer Rovio has announced it will launch a successor to its immensely popular wingless birds franchise "Angry Birds" in the next few months.
Logitech, a renowned brand in computer accessories, has awarded Computer Source Ltd (CSL) as the 'Best Distributor' for their excellence in business development.