News of: Monday, 18th of June, 2012
Several thousand garment workers again fought pitched battles with law enforcers in Ashulia yesterday, fuming over the shutdown of all garment factories in the industrial belt.
The apparel industry is in a double bind: continuous high inflation has led to a wage pressure and a gloomy global economy has left the garment owners in a tight financial situation.
A well-protected border is a must to prevent intrusion from Myanmar and crimes like human trafficking and smuggling, officials at Teknaf in Cox's Bazar say.
Less than two hours after International Crimes Tribunal-1 issued an arrest warrant against Jamaat leader Mir Kashem Ali, he was arrested at a newspaper office in Dhaka yesterday in connection with war crimes and taken to the tribunal.
Apprehending an influx of Rohingya refugees when the state of emergency is lifted in the Rakhine state of Myanmar, the Bangladesh government has decided to reinforce guards at the border with the country.
Cross-border trade between Bangladesh and Myanmar resumed yesterday after a nine-day hiatus since sectarian violence erupted in the Rakhine state of the neighbouring country.
The government will be able to keep subsidy at a tolerable level as estimated in the proposed budget for fiscal 2012-13, Finance Minister AMA Muhith categorically said yesterday.
The Dhaka University authorities have formed a committee to investigate a PhD thesis by a teacher who claims to have interviewed around 13 lakh people in two and a half years for his work -- over 1,397 people a day.
Two robbers died allegedly after being beaten by a mob in Faridpur yesterday.
The shutdown of more than 300 factories at Ashulia in the wake of labour unrest will mean a $10-million loss in exports for the garment owners there every day.
As part of his introductory visit to member states, Saarc Secretary General Ahmed Saleem arrives in Dhaka today for a three-day official visit to Bangladesh.
Expressing his frustration over the slow implementation of the National Road Safety Council's decisions taken years ago, Communications Minister Obaidul Quader yesterday said he wanted to see tangible progress in this regard.
In the wake of heavy rainfall for the past few days, local administration with the help of law enforcers will start today evacuating people from Chittagong city's most risky hill slopes to avert possible loss of lives from landslides.
Adeeb Ul Haque, a class 10 student from Cantonment English School & College, became the sixth and final participant to qualify for the Grand Finale of The Daily Star Spelling Bee on Thursday.
Outgoing World Bank president Robert Zoellick yesterday warned that Europe was facing a "Lehmans moment" and the collapse of the euro currency could trigger a global crisis.
A parliamentary body has found “some shortcomings” in a recent deal between state-run Petrobangla and Russia's Gazprom Company for drilling 10 gas wells in Bangladesh.
The High Court yesterday ordered the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) to complete investigation into the cases in connection with the killing of six students by a mob at Aminbazar last year and submit a report in four weeks.
The main opposition BNP will form all-party action committees across the country to realise its demand for restoring a non-party neutral government system to oversee the next general elections.
Influential former strongman Mahathir Mohamad has thrown his weight behind a Malaysian conservative pushback against growing calls for change, saying reform could lift the lid on ethnic tensions.
India wants to strengthen economic ties with Cuba, the top Indian diplomat said Saturday on a trip to the Communist-run Caribbean island.
Bombings in Iraq killed five people and wounded 34 others yesterday, security and medical officials said, after a bloody week that cost the lives of more than 100 people.
One cannot take lightly the announcement of the BGMEA and BKMEA, associations of the garment and the knitwear manufacturers' and exporters' association respectively, to close down the entire garment manufacturing factories in Ashulia area sine die. This is a sequel to the unrest in some of the factories in that area. One would hope that the leaders in the RMG sector and the government understand the very grave implications of the action.
Journalists are falling easy prey to machinations of vested quarters whenever the latter feel their interests are endangered. Lack of state protection on the ground level provides a sense of impunity to them.
Portugal beat the Netherlands 2-1 on Sunday to set up a Euro 2012 quarterfinal with the Czech Republic and condemn the Dutch to a first group-stage European Championship exit since 1980.
A week is a long time in politics and can be a long time in football - just ask Dick Advocaat whose spell as Russia coach ended in ignominy when Greece condemned them to a group stage exit from Euro 2012.
It was another near miss for Bangladesh's most celebrated golfer Siddikur Rahman in his bid to win a second Asian Tour title, as he finished second to Thai veteran Thaworn Wiratchant in the Queen's Cup in Thailand yesterday.
Title contenders Muktijoddha Sangsad opened up a three-point lead at the top of the Grameenphone Bangladesh Premier League with a 3-0 victory over defending champions Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday, thanks to a Mithun Chowdhury brace after Maruf Ahmed had given them a 10th minute lead.
Bangladesh never really threw themselves at the Zimbabwe total to lose by 11 runs in the Twenty20 triangular series opener yesterday at the Harare Sports Club. The Tigers haven't quite shrugged off the cobwebs of not playing for more than two months and it showed, mostly in their batting.
Five clubs including Usha KC and Mariner Youngs gave the Bangladesh Hockey Federation an ultimatum to start the Premier Division Hockey League tomorrow; or else face pull-out from the 11-team league, which was supposed to get underway from June 17 after nearly two years.
Satabdi Goshti Cricket Academy beat Chittagong Kings by 37 runs in the CJKS-Urban American Under-18 Twenty20 tournament at the MA Aziz Stadium yesterday.
Isdair Rabeya HossainHigh School of Narayanganj will play against Habiganj Richi High School in the first semifinal of the Islami Bank National School Football Tournament at the Birshreshtha Shaheed Mostafa Kamal Stadium in Kamalapur today.
Ian Bell smashed a century to lead England to a 114-run win over West Indies on Saturday, but admitted that he had enjoyed a double dose of good fortune.
The controversy surrounding the application of the umpire decision review system (DRS) in the game of cricket at the international level refuses to die down.
Germany's Tommy Haas defeated second seed Roger Federer 7-6 (7/5), 6-4 to win the ATP grasscourt tournament here on Sunday.
Croatia's Maric Cilic took the Queen's Club title in controversial fashion on Sunday as Argentina's David Nalbandian was disqualified in the second set of the final for kicking an advertising board into a line judge.
Reigning 100-metre world champion Yohan Blake of Jamaica won the 100m crown at the Donovan Bailey Invitational on Saturday in 10.05 seconds.
Spain's Jorge Lorenzo won the British Grand Prix on a Yamaha on Sunday to stretch his lead over Casey Stoner to 25 points in the MotoGP World Championship.
Czech Republic's injured captain Tomas Rosicky said he believed it was his team-mates strong character that had seen them rebound from an opening hammering by Russia to securing their place in the Euro 2012 quarterfinals.
Greece, cornered and faced with an early exit from Euro 2012, came up with the goods on Saturday, beating odds-on Group A favourites Russia 1-0 and proving once again they perform best in the face of adversity.
Giovanni Trapattoni may be a proud Italian but he knows he has a professional duty as Ireland coach to try his hardest to deny Italy a passage into the Euro 2012 quarterfinals on Monday.
After thrashing an accommodating Ireland side 4-0, holders Spain may find Croatia a tougher nut to crack when they meet in Gdansk on Monday in a game that will decide who tops Euro 2012 Group C.
Poland's Franciszek Smuda was the first managerial casualty of Euro 2012 after the hosts slid out of the tournament with a disappointingly flat 1-0 loss against the Czech Republic on Saturday.
Poland coach Franciszek Smuda mourned the end of their "great adventure" as the co-hosts slumped out of Euro 2012 after a 1-0 defeat by the Czech Republic in the final Group A game.
Wes Hall, the legendary West Indies fast bowler, has been knighted in the Queen's Birthday honours list.
The Bangladesh Bank has recommended that the National Board of Revenue (NBR) revise the tax imposed on bank interest rates and mobile phone bills in the proposed budget for fiscal 2012-13.
Le Méridien Dhaka, a new five-star hotel with a focus on business travellers, is set to open doors to visitors by July next year.
The Jatiya Sangsad passed a bill yesterday to set up Bangladesh Competition Commission (BCC) that will work to ensure and encourage healthy competition in business by busting syndicates involved in manipulating and controlling markets.
A giant cloud of confusion hangs over the actual number of internet users in the country, due to massive disparity between the figures disclosed by the telecom regulator and other weighty institutions.
Small investors staged a demonstration in front of the Dhaka Stock Exchange building yesterday and demanded resignation of the finance minister as stocks continue to suffer losses.
Bangladesh Shipping Corporation (BSC) signed a deal on Friday with China National Machinery Import and Export Corporation (CMC) to buy six new ships from China at around Tk 1,400 crore.
Facebook Inc has agreed to pay $10 million to charity to settle a lawsuit that accused the site of violating users' rights to control the use of their own names, photographs and likenesses, according to court documents made public over the weekend.
Hisayuki Mutoh of City Network Incorporation (CCK) of Japan yesterday announced their plan to set up an agro processing plant in the port city.
The board of governors of Bangladesh Private Export Processing Zone (BPEPZ) yesterday approved Rangunia Export Processing Zone, paving way for establishing another private export oriented industrial hub in the country.
The call on Alex FM radio is aimed at the residents in the overcrowded Johannesburg sprawl of shanties and houses: "Stop walking and start riding, it is time to get liberated!"
With sleek railcars sliding along elevated tracks, South Korea's newest light railway is a smooth ride, and the hope is that it can avoid the fiscal train wreck facing similar projects.
Standard Chartered Bank yesterday launched a new type of credit card -- Visa Signature Card -- to offer a host of superior travel and lifestyle benefits for the top-end consumers of Bangladesh.
The Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity 2012, the biggest and most prestigious celebration of creativity in communication and marketing, kicked off yesterday at the film city of Cannes in France.
European leaders dealing with the sovereign debt crisis have done too little, too late, outgoing World Bank chief Robert Zoellick said, warning that Europe risks losing influence and developing nations now face increasing market uncertainty.
Indian pharmaceutical tycoon Yusuf Hamied revolutionised AIDS treatment more than a decade ago by supplying cut-price drugs to the world's poor -- and now he wants to do the same for cancer.
The High Court yesterday directed the authorities concerned to refrain from leasing out any coastal reserved forest land in Cox's Bazar for shrimp cultivation.
A Chittagong court yesterday granted bail to 10 BNP activists in three cases of vandalising and torching vehicles in the port city's Kazir Dewri and Wasa intersection areas on May 13.
Five people were killed and 35 injured in separate road accidents in Thakurgaon, Gazipur, Lalmonirhat and Naogaon on Saturday and yesterday.
BNP-led opposition parties are involved in the ongoing turmoil in Ashulia on the outskirts of the capital, Environment and Forests Minister Hasan Mahmud said in parliament yesterday.
The political counselor of the Chinese Embassy in Dhaka, Yang Zhaohui, yesterday said China does not want to see any instability or unrest neither in Myanmar nor in Bangladesh.
The unfinished autobiography of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman will be launched today.
Police recovered the body of a teenage girl tied up inside a plastic sack yesterday morning, some 14 hours after she went missing on her way home from her sister's house in the capital's Mirpur-13.
Budgetary allocation alone can not achieve the country's desired development as the allocation sectors and final outcomes need evaluation too, said speakers at a roundtable yesterday.
With a call to intensify the anti-corruption movement for upholding democracy, good governance and human rights, speakers stressed on collective measures of the government, political and civil society members in this regard.
Ain O Salish Kendra (ASK) and Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) yesterday condemned the recent murder of a journalist in Jessore by a local drug-smuggling syndicate.
A journalist of a national daily alleged that he has been living in fear of harassment, assault, murder, and forced disappearance for writing a report on the bomb blast attack on Chashara Awami League office on June 16, 2001.
Agriculture Minister Matia Chowdhury yesterday put emphasis on use of local resources to achieve self-sufficiency in food in the country.
The High Court yesterday directed the authorities concerned to maintain status quo on earth filling, construction and encroachment on Munshipukur, a century-old pond in Chawkbazar area of Chittagong city, for the next three months.
Green activists yesterday demanded efforts to save the biodiversity of the Sundarbans by shifting to another place the proposed coal-based thermal power plant from Rampal in Bagerhat which is next to the forest.
Japan this year will provide a grant of 202 million Japanese Yen (approximately Tk 20.39 crore) to Bangladesh under its Human Resource Development Scholarship programme, said a press release.
The High Court yesterday issued a contempt of court rule against Mahmudur Rahman, acting editor of Bangla daily Amar Desh, and its Jatiya Sangsad reporter for publishing a “false and fabricated” report involving Justice AHM Shamsuddin Choudhury Manik.
A 10-day long training workshop styled “Research Methodology and Application of SPSS (a computer software) Techniques in Research” was inaugurated at Chittagong University (CU) yesterday.
Bangladesh Coast Guard (East Zone) members yesterday seized 4,800 litres of diesel and 410 litres of lubricant that were suspected to have been stolen from ships arriving at the Chittagong port.
Five eateries in Chittagong were fined a total of Tk 65,000 yesterday on charge of various irregularities including producing and selling food items in unhygienic environment.
Crime Reporters' Association of Bangladesh (CRAB) yesterday formed a committee to investigate the killing of journalist couple Sagar Sarowar and Meherun Runi as law enforcers have yet to solve it after four months.
Two alleged extortionists and a mugger were beaten up by mobs in two separate incidents in the capital yesterday.
The International Crimes Tribunal-1 yesterday adjourned the trial proceedings against Jamaat leader Delawar Hossain Sayedee for three days considering his poor health condition.
Today is the 10th death anniversary of eminent educationist Dr Neelima Ibrahim, said a press release.
Today is the seventh death anniversary of Advocate Gour Chandra Bala, a former provincial minister of erstwhile Pakistan.
Md Ashraf Ali, a language movement veteran of Nilphamari, died on Saturday in the capital. He left behind his wife, two sons, three daughters and a host of relatives to mourn the death. His namaz-e-janaza will be held tomorrow, said a press release.
Sunil Chandra Paul, former district and sessions judge, died at the age of 62 in the capital on Saturday.
Activists of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) yesterday started agitation demanding immediate resignation of the vice chancellor of Pabna University of Science and Technology for what they said widespread corruption and nepotism at the institution.
Students of five more schools in Narail, Lalmonirhat and Feni districts yesterday joined English language fairs held under English in Schools programme, a joint initiative of The Daily Star and mobile operator Robi.
Journalists in several south-western districts under Khulna division are passing their days amid fear and anxiety as one journalist was killed and nine others were tortured and threatened in a week from June 10 to 16.
Pineapple has flooded the markets in the hill town but it still remains pricey for ordinary consumers.
A youth was killed allegedly by a gang of criminals at Shankarpur in the town early yesterday for witnessing an incident of mugging.
The ethnic people yesterday formed a human chain in front of deputy commissioner's office to press home their three-point demand, including formation of a separate land commission for them.
Robbers posing as policemen looted valuables from six houses at Manikdah village in Singair upazila early yesterday.
Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) on Saturday arrested five members of Bangabandhu Projonmo League, a ruling Awami League-backed organisation, on charge of demanding illegal toll from two businessmen in the town.
Police arrested 12 people from different parts of Ulipur upazila yesterday and the day before on charge of attacking the deputy commissioner of the district.
The eight-day-old boy 'stolen' from the Mymensingh Medical College Hospital (MMCH) is yet to be rescued.
Two people were killed by lightning at Fatehpur Goriali village under Baliadangi upazila yesterday morning while they were fishing in Aman-Dhamon River. The victims were identified as Abdul Karim, 40, son of late Kamed Ali and Harun-Or-Rashid, 15, son of Moidur Rahman of the same village. Officer in-charge of Baliadangi police station said a thunderbolt struck them at about 5:30am leaving them dead on the spot. A UD case was filed with Baliadangi PS.
A mobile court here on Saturday sentenced a college student to three months' imprisonment for harassing a college girl. The convict was identified as Rabiul Sheikh, a student of Baliakandi Degree College and son of Abdul Majid of Samshapur village in Baliakandi upazila. Locals said Rabiul used to sexually harass the girl of the same college since long. On Saturday, he waylaid the girl on her way to the college at about 11am. Hearing her cry for help, college students and teachers rushed to the spot, caught Rabiul and handed over him to police.
A pregnant housewife was beaten to death allegedly by her husband and in-laws for dowry in village Barni in Dumuria upazila in the district on Friday night. The victim was identified as Joyosri Biswas, 24, daughter of Asit Mallik of Krisna Nagar village of the same upazila. Police quoting family members said, Joyosri was married off to Mithu Biswas, 32, son of Agar Biswas, three years back. Since the marriage, Mithu and his family members used to torture her for dowry. On the fateful night, an altercation ensued over the issue. Angered by her refusal to bring Tk 50,000 from her father, they beat her up mercilessly, leaving her dead on the spot.
Bangladesh on 12th June turned away three boats carrying 1,000 Rohingyas. A refugee is someone who has been forced to flee his or her country because of persecution, war, or violence. A refugee has a well-founded fear of persecution for reasons of race, religion, nationality, political opinion or membership in a particular social group. Most likely, they cannot return home or are afraid to do so.
After much controversy for over a decade, the Department of Passports and Immigration finally started issuance of Machine Readable Passport (MRP) since last year.
Dhaka has secured a position among the least liveable cities across the globe because of pollution, mainly in air and water. The number of brick fields is increasing gradually at a time when air pollution turned into a serious health hazard. Wood or abandoned rubber tyres, in stead of coal, is being used to burn bricks. The influential owners collect earth from anywhere and use those for making bricks. They have been continuously polluting the environment by taking advantage of the poor execution of laws, making huge profits during this time of rapid urbanisation. The mega brickfields around Dhaka are a major contributor to air pollution. The law, however, clearly states that such brickfields cannot be set up within three kilometres of municipal areas or forests. But the government seems to have turned a blind eye to this important issue.
The drama of April 9, 2012 involving former Railway Minister Suranjit Sengupta's APS and two railway employees carrying Tk 70 lakh on their way to the minister's house is still very vivid in our memory.
It is really unfortunate that the Myanmar government considers the Rohingyas to be foreigners, while many of their citizens consider them illegal Bangalee immigrants. This notion is responsible for sparking deadly sectarian violence in western Rakhine state centering an incident of rape and murder of a woman.
We the commoners are in serious problem. No matter who comes to power, the worse happens to us. The inflation has gone so high that people like us are finding it very difficult to cope with. The sudden rise in the electricity price has made our life miserable. We the commoners pay our bills, pay our income tax, vote for the betterment of the country, and in return all we get is immense suffering. Nobody listens to the common people. The sudden increase in the electricity bill has been the last nail on the commoners' coffin. The bill has become almost double, and yet we don't get electricity. There is load shedding on every alternate hour. Then why should we pay the augmented bills? Everywhere in the market the product quality and quantity have gone down, yet we are paying extra amount. It seems nobody listens to the common people but they are the people who elect a party to power and the people they elect do not even pay heed to their problems. Where will we go?
Rationalists have long claimed that miracles never happen. I beg to differ. In Bangladesh, miracles happen not only every day, but every hour.
A report from Johannesburg published in a local English daily on 12th.June is a very good example of state austerity and modesty shown by the new president of Malawi and that is in line with the country's financial position.
Here are some comments that came in response to Sunday's The Daily Star news report headlined “Electricity bill shocking”
Greeks yesterday voted in an election that could decide whether their heavily indebted country stays in the euro zone or heads for the exit, potentially unleashing shocks that could break up the single currency.
Myanmar yesterday pledged to hunt down those responsible for the deaths of 50 people in communal clashes, as the relief effort was stepped up for tens of thousands displaced by the violence.
Greece's former prime minister George Papandreou yesterday said that Europe faced a make or break moment, adding that the euro currency's problems went far deeper than those of his own country.
India's main opposition BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) yesterday deferred its decision on the issue of candidate for the July 19 presidential polls amid indications of differences in the combine whether to back ruling UPA nominee Pranab Mukherjee or force a contest against him.
Egyptians were voting yesterday in the second and last day of a highly divisive run-off presidential election between an Islamist once jailed by Hosni Mubarak and the ousted leader's last prime minister.
Syrian troops yesterday tightened their grip on the flashpoint city of Homs as the opposition demanded the deployment of armed peacekeepers after UN observers halted their work because of bloodshed.
Governments are set to weaken pledges on boosting access to water and energy after a new draft negotiating text was issued at the Rio+20 meeting.
France voted in a parliamentary run-off yesterday expected to hand President Francois Hollande's Socialist party a majority and strengthen his position in legislative battles over euro zone crisis policy.
World powers resume crisis talks with Iran today amid hope that a crippling oil embargo and pressure from hosts Russia will finally force the Islamic Republic to scale back its nuclear drive.
Thirteen prisoners died from smoke inhalation after inmates started a fire during a mutiny in a jail in southeastern Turkey, officials said yesterday.
Bomb blasts damaged five churches in four cities in Nigeria's northern Kaduna state yesterday, injuring dozens of worshippers and leading to an immediate curfew, officials said.
Former Maldivian leader Mohamed Nasheed, who claims he was ousted in a military coup earlier this year, secured his party's nomination yesterday to be its presidential candidate, the party said.
Arts & Entertainment
Farzana Chumki shot into the limelight after winning the title of Lux Anondodhara Photogenic. She has never looked back since. The talented star also worked with Dhaka Theatre for a long spell interspersed with several modelling gigs. Ntv is now airing a serial featuring the actress, “Poth Gechhe Beke” -- directed by Animesh Aich.
“Oedipus”, the heart rending Greek tragedy by Sophocles, has seen many stage adaptations in different languages. In Bangladesh, several theatre productions have presented the tragedy and theatre troupe Drishtipat's new production is the latest. The troupe gives the Greek tragedy an oriental touch, as the new production, “Raja Himadri”, zooms in on the misfortune of a Himalayan king.
Tv serial “Jononi” -- produced by Pothik -- began airing on GTV from June 16, and will be telecast at 8:30 pm every Saturday to Wednesday. Written by Shyamol Bhaduri, the serial has been directed by Shahadat Hossain Sujon.
Bangladesh Gyan o Srijonshil Prokashak Samiti organised a seminar titled “Medhabi Projonmo Gothone Srijonshil Boi”. The event was held at Seminar Room, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy on June 16.
Pabna Drama Circle (PDC), a leading theatre organisation of the district, observed its 31st anniversary. A weeklong programme marking the occasion kicked off on June 13 amidst festivity.
Somaj Somikkha Songho, a culture-centric research organisation, arranged a cultural event celebrating monsoon, titled “Ashadh-er Megh Bheshe Bheshe Jaye, Surer Anondo Dharaye” at Fulki Auditorium in the port city on Saturday.
In honour of their deceased group member Rinkon Sikder, theatre troupe Prachyanat and Prachyanat School of Acting and Design arranged a memorial programme at the Experimental Theatre Hall, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy on Saturday, 16 June.
Bangladesh Foreign Minister Dipu Moni was rather candid when she told the Jatiya Sangsad (Parliament) on Thursday that Bangladesh was not bound by any international law to open its border for the Rohingya, that there was no warlike situation in that country, and that the Myanmar government was not forcing its citizens out.
Dr. Zaid Bakht, Research Director, BIDS and Professor M.M. Akash Dept. of Economics, University of Dhaka, talk to The Daily Star on garment owners' decision to shut down factories
American Revolutionary War: British troops abandon Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.