The Daily Star

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Sunday, December 21, 2014


News of: Wednesday, 1st of August, 2012

Front Page

Top opposition leaders indicted

Forty-six opposition leaders, including BNP acting secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, will go on trial this week in a case filed for torching a bus.

Govt's action under watch

The ADB and Jica have extended their Padma bridge loan effectuation date by a month with a clear message that during this time the government has to address the issues of corruption raised by the World Bank.

Garment makers move to right labour wrongs

Against the background of growing concern over labour rights violation in Bangladesh, garment makers yesterday said they had taken the issue seriously and started to improve work environment and maintain compliance in factories.

Stock glitch stops trading

The stockmarket regulator yesterday formed a committee to investigate a technical glitch in the electronic share transaction system that forced bourses to suspend trading.

Destiny chairman, 21 others sued for graft

The Anti-Corruption Commission yesterday sued 22 officials of Destiny Group for laundering Tk 3,285.26 crore by cheating investors.

No fish export till next order

The government yesterday slapped a ban on export of all kinds of white fish, except for prawns, to keep prices of the protein-rich food at tolerable levels.

AL allies want talks first

Ruling Awami League's key allies in the 14-party combine do not want to back right now the prime minister's proposed "small cabinet" for interim government to hold the next parliamentary election.

Grameen Bank refutes PM's remarks

Grameen Bank yesterday refuted Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's claim that the microcredit organisation charges 30 to 45 percent interest to the poor.

HC stays Buet agitation, strike

The High Court yesterday issued an injunction against the ongoing agitation and strike by Buet teachers, employees and students to help the engineering institution run its academic functions smoothly.

Man abducted, then 'converted' to Islam

Jamaat-e-Islami leader Muhammad Kamaruzzaman had forced a Hindu youth to convert to Islam at an Al-Badr camp during the Liberation War, Monowar Hossain Khan, a guard of the camp, told the International Crimes Tribunal-2 yesterday.

Eyes on hydropower

With an aim to import 1000 megawatt of electricity, Bangladesh has agreed to cooperate with Nepal in managing water resources and hydropower.

Half of India without power

Half of India yesterday went without electricity as three power grids serving Northern, Eastern and North-Eastern regions failed, crippling normal life across 22 states.

Discrimination declines: US

Discrimination against religious and ethnic minorities in Bangladesh has declined, according to a report issued on Monday by the US State Department.

TIB slates legalisation

Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) yesterday condemned the government's decision to legalise some illegal housing schemes defying a High Court directive and ignoring environmental impacts.

GNLA leader Champion pushed back

Bangladesh on Monday "pushed back" Champion R Sangma, co-founder and chairman of the Garo National Liberation Army (GNLA), to India.

AL, BNP turn in audit report

Awami League, BNP, Jatiya Party and 18 other political parties yesterday submitted their annual audit reports to the Election Commission, specifying their annual income and expenditure last year.

Couple murdered in city

Unidentified criminals killed an elderly couple at their house in the capital's Dakkhinkhan yesterday.

UN heads for flood-hit areas in North Korea

United Nations teams were heading for flood-hit areas of North Korea to assess possible aid, a UN official said yesterday, after Pyongyang reported scores dead and tens of thousands homeless.

Iraq car bombs kill 14 people

Twin car bombs in Baghdad killed 12 people and wounded at least 27 others yesterday, while another attack west of the capital left two people dead, security and medical officials said.

Dhaka-KL meet soon to finalise Padma deal

Bangladesh and Malaysia will hold a meeting early this month in Dhaka to finalise the Padma bridge project, reported Malaysia's national news agency Bernama yesterday.

Editorial

High Court ruling on illegal landfill welcome

The verdict of the High Court on July 30 ordering the Department of Environment (DoE) to desist from issuing environment and site clearances to the errant Hallmark Group intending to establish an industrial park is much welcome news. Indeed, the real estate agency has been ordered to refrain from carrying out all activities, including land filling in the areas Kandibaliarpur, Nandankhali, Jamur, Muchipara and Vopri moujas of Savar upazila for the duration of the stay order. The Court has gone further and asked the DoE why it chose to waive 90 per cent of the penalty slapped on Hallmark for failing to obtain environmental clearance certificate prior to embarking on the project.

Hooligans in the street

It seems gangsters have a free rein on major city thoroughfares, while members of the law-enforcing agencies look away.

Sports

US ahead despite Agnel's heroics

Yannick Agnel won the men's 200m freestyle in scintillating style Monday, but 17-year-old Missy Franklin helped the United States stay in front of France in the Olympic swimming medals race.

Emdadul blown away

Blustery conditions have often spelt the death-knell for batsmen over the many years of Lord's storied history. The story was the same on Monday in London. On another Bangladesh versus England encounter, the home side triumphed emphatically as the tourists struggled to cope with the conditions at the home of cricket.

Medals to appease Murray's hunger

Like your typical Brit, Andy Murray does not give much away. He is impressively impassive, speaking in measured tones of a man much older than his young years. But Murray was surprisingly candid, after his victory over Finland's Jarkko Nieminen in Wimbledon yesterday.

Lord's of the game

The scene was familiar, as were the conditions.

London Diary

Bill Gates was at the Excel arena to watch 16-year-old table tennis player Ariel Hsing lose her third-round women's singles match 4-2 to No.2 seed LI Xiaoxia. "She's clearly got a great career ahead of her, it was a very close match with one of the best players in the world," the Microsoft billionaire enthused. It turns out Gates met Hsing seven years ago following an introduction by fellow tycoon and table tennis fan Warren Buffett (USA). Even as a 9-year-old, Hsing could easily beat them both, but she hadn't a clue who either of them were in real life. "When I first met them, they were just Uncle Bill and Uncle Warren," she recalls.


Off-season camp for booters

The Bangladesh Football Federation yesterday decided to run a football camp from August 25 in an attempt to prepare the two national teams, U-21 to U-23 squad and U-18 to U-20 squad ahead of their respective international commitments next year.

Kohli ton seals series

Virat Kohli scored yet another century to take India to a 3-1 series victory against Sri Lanka by winning the fourth ODI of their five-match series by six wickets at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo yesterday.

Zidane eyeing coaching job

Zinedine Zidane, who has been tipped to one day manage France, will soon begin training to be a coach while he works at Real Madrid's youth academy, the Spanish club said Monday.

Female booters' camp from today

The residential camp for the women's football team ahead of SAFF Women's Football Championship is set to get underway from today as 27 players out of the 32-member preliminary squad reported to coach Golam Rabbani Choton yesterday at the BFF House.

Powerful Djokovic

Serbia's Novak Djokovic fired a warning to his Olympic rivals as the world number two crushed three-time Wimbledon finalist Andy Roddick 6-2, 6-1 in the second round on Tuesday.

Usha blank Bima

Usha KC closed the gap with leaders Mohammedan SC in the Green Delta Insurance Premier Division Hockey League when the Old Dhaka outfit blanked Shadharan Bima 4-0 in their Super League encounter at the Maulana Bhasani Hockey Stadium yesterday.

She will wear something on her head

Saudi Arabia judoka Wojdan Shaherkani was given the go-ahead Tuesday to fight at the Olympics after a row over the wearing of a hijab was resolved, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) told AFP.

Dwyer destroys SA

Captain Jamie Dwyer scored a hat-trick as world champions Australia launched their Olympic Games men's hockey campaign with a thumping 6-0 victory over South Africa on Monday.

China defend team gold

China bounced back to defend their Olympic men's team gymnastics title Monday as hosts Great Britain snatched a historic bronze medal -- but missed out on silver to Japan after a judges' inquiry.

Swiss booter sent home

Switzerland footballer Michel Morganella has been sent home from the Olympics after racially abusing South Korea's players on Twitter, team officials confirmed on Monday.

Skeet crown remains Hancock's

American soldier Vincent Hancock retained his Olympic men's skeet crown on Tuesday after a flawless display of shooting in the final at London's Royal Artillery Barracks.

2m spectators for first three days

More than two million spectators watched the first three days of the Olympics, local organisers LOCOG said Tuesday.

From silver spoon to silver medal

Some might say Queen Elizabeth's granddaughter Zara Phillips was born with a silver spoon in her mouth. Now she can also boast a silver medal.

Kate suffers broken jaw

Great Britain women's hockey captain Kate Walsh's Olympic Games future was in the balance after she underwent surgery on a broken jaw on Monday.

Business

Social Islami Bank goes to court to clear terror financing charges

A Bangladeshi Islamic bank went to court to take three Jeddah-based terror-link suspected entities off its shareholders' list in an attempt to avoid international business restrictions.

Fertiliser imports spiral as factories remain shut

The government's plan to keep the fertiliser factories shut to save gas somewhat backfired as it had to import 20 lakh tonne of fertilisers last fiscal year.

SEC forms panel to probe glitch in stock trading system

The Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday formed a four-member panel to investigate a technical glitch in the electronic share transaction system, which forced the twin bourses to suspend share trading early in the day.

Generation Next IPO gets green light

The Securities and Exchange yesterday approved the IPO application of Generation Next Fashions Ltd to raise Tk 30 crore from public.

Merchant banks call for more assistance

Merchant banks yesterday urged the National Board of Revenue (NBR) to incorporate interest waiver and margin loan impairment costs into expenses for small investors.

WFC, Fish Foundation sign aquaculture deal

The World Fish Centre and Bangladesh Shrimp and Fish Foundation (BSFF) have signed a memorandum of understanding for sustainable development of aquaculture in Bangladesh.

Indian drought could delay fuel reforms

The drought threatening India due to elusive monsoon rains will make it politically harder for the government to raise prices of subsidised fuel, delaying a reform urgently needed to rein in the country's fiscal deficit, Montek Singh Ahluwalia, deputy chairman of the Planning Commission, told Reuters.

Deutsche Bank axes 1,900 jobs as crisis cuts profits in half

Deutsche Bank, Germany's biggest lender, said on Tuesday that it would slash 1,900 jobs, mainly outside Germany, as the eurozone crisis cut second quarter profits nearly in half.

Europe's top banks feel pain from debt crisis

Europe's biggest banks on Tuesday took massive hits on their second-quarter profits as the eurozone debt crisis slices into earnings and adds to the pressure to boost their capital defences.

Pfizer profit beats forecasts

Pfizer, the biggest US drug maker, said Tuesday its second-quarter profit had surged 25 percent from a year earlier, boosted by cost-cutting that offset lower sales.

Qubee gets new chief

Faisal Hyder has been appointed as the acting chief executive officer of wireless broadband operator Qubee Bangladesh replacing founding CEO Jerry Mobbs, the company said in a statement yesterday.

India holds rates steady, ups inflation forecast

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) left interest rates unchanged on Tuesday for the second straight review, showing that bringing down stubbornly high inflation is its top priority even as economic conditions deteriorate.

Honda quarterly profit jumps fourfold to $1.7b

Honda Motor said Tuesday its net profit surged more than fourfold to $1.7 billion for the three months to June, underscoring a recovery from the impact of last year's quake-tsunami disasters.

German unemployment rises as economic skies darken

Unemployment in Germany rose in July as the eurozone debt crisis increasingly casts a pall over Europe's biggest economy, official data showed on Tuesday.

Apple stokes new iPhone talk

Apple Inc is gearing up to unveil a new product at a major September 12 event, a source familiar with the plan said, presaging the long-awaited launch of the redesigned iPhone.

Libor: the saga of recession continues

Every time a catastrophe is reported in the financial markets, invariably banks have a role to play either directly or indirectly as such bankers have earned a new title, bankster, with the suffix possibly hired from the word scamster. Lately, a scandal has put the banking industry in tenterhooks and additionally the human resources function of the banks in overdrive. It surely must be hard work issuing mass pink slips to blemished traders in the wake of the Libor scandal which some consider as “The Crime of the Century”. Surely someone for the stature of Bob Diamond, who led Barclays to being one of the top international banks in just over a decade, signing the pink slip is just a precursor to the global headwinds faced by the banking industry.

Ashulia unrest baffles garment makers

A 10-day shutdown of garment factories in the wake of labour unrest in Ashulia in June dented the country's image as one of world's leading readymade garment exporters, industry people said yesterday.

Can Super Mario save the euro?

Can Super Mario save the euro? Mario Draghi said last Thursday that the European Central Bank's job is to stop sovereign bond yields rising if these increases are caused by fears of a euro break-up. While this represents a sea-change in the ECB president's thinking, it risks sowing dissension within his ranks. He will struggle to come up with the right tools to achieve his goals.

Chidambaram: India's reformist new finance minister

India's new finance minister P. Chidambaram is a Harvard-educated former lawyer from a wealthy southern family picked to help reform India's economy as it battles slow growth and galloping inflation.

Metropolitan

Kuakata boat has historical value

A French-born Bangladeshi expert on local traditional boats has examined an ancient boat that surfaced from beneath the sandy beach in Kuakata recently and said it was a national heritage bearing ethnic history.

CEDAW must be followed fully

Bangladesh must oppose religious fundamentalists and agree to the CEDAW sections that give women equal rights in marriage, said experts at a national sharing session in the capital yesterday.

Bangladesh, Nepal sign MoU

Bangladesh and Nepal yesterday signed a deal on holding bilateral consultations between the foreign ministries of the two countries for further strengthening of the ties.

4 BCL activists denied bail

A Dhaka court yesterday rejected bail petitions of four Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) activists accused in the murder of Jahangirnagar University (JU) student Zubair Ahmed.

PW tells of late recovery of two fire arms

A prosecution witness in the 10-truck arms haul cases yesterday said two more fire arms were recovered from one of the two trawlers after the seizure of the main cache of armaments that the trawlers had carried to Chittagong on April 2, 2004.

Poverty rate decreased

Environment and Forests Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud yesterday said the poverty rate in the country, which was above 40 percent a few years back, is now below 30 percent.

Man gets life term for killing girl

A Dhaka court yesterday sentenced a young man to life term imprisonment for killing a four-year-old girl in the capital's Sutrapur area in August 2009.

Youth found dead in Keraniganj

Police recovered the body of an unknown youth from a bush at Rajendrapur in South Keraniganj on the outskirts of the capital yesterday.

Law soon to stop ads on infants' food

Urging media not to display any advertisement on infants' food, Health and Family Welfare Minister A F M Ruhal Haque yesterday said the government will enact a law soon barring such advertisements.

11 killed, 24 hurt in road accidents

Eleven people were killed and twenty-four others injured in road accidents in Dhaka, Sirajganj, Chittagong, Pabna, Netrakona, Moulvibazar and Comilla on Monday and yesterday.

Bapex hits new gas layer in Comilla

Bangladesh Petroleum Exploration Company (Bapex), a subsidiary of state-owned Petrobangla, has discovered a new layer of gas in the No 2 well of Srikail gas field in Comilla.

Incumbent PM may head interim govt

The incumbent prime minister can head the proposed interim government under which the next general election will be held as per the constitution, says State Minister for Law Qamrul Islam.

Some war crimes trials may end this year

Law Minister Shafique Ahmed yesterday said he is hopeful that trials of about five to seven persons accused of crimes against humanity will be finished within this year if the present speed of trial proceedings continue.

4 held for robbery

Detective Branch (DB) of police arrested four robbers in connection with looting of a businessman's house in Gendaria on March 9.

Two bodies recovered in Tangail

Two bodies were found in Tangail district yesterday.

College girl 'commits suicide'

A college girl allegedly committed suicide in Jatrabari area of the capital in the early hours of yesterday.

Parents satisfied over charge sheet

The elderly parents of Faruk Hossain, a student of Rajshahi University who was hacked to death allegedly by Shibir men in February 2010, yesterday expressed their satisfaction over police's submission of a charge sheet.

Bangladesh elected vice-president of AIBD general conf

Bangladesh has been elected vice-president of the General Conference of Asia Pacific Institute for Broadcasting Development (AIBD) for the next two years.

Changes to draft road transport, traffic act urged

Speakers at a views exchange meeting yesterday urged the government to amend some provisions of the Draft Road Transport and Traffic Act, 2012 to ensure smooth movement of pedestrians and bicyclists in the capital.

Sugar mill fined in Ctg

A mobile court in Chittagong yesterday fined a sugar mill Tk 1 lakh for dumping industrial waste into the Karnaphuli River.

Some HSC exam answer sheets in Ctg to be re-evaluated

Chittagong Education Board has announced that 4,410 students have submitted applications for re-evaluating 16,814 HSC examination answer sheets as the students feel that they have not obtained expected results in this year's examinations.

ACC sues ex-customs staff's wife

Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) in Chittagong yesterday sued the wife of a retired customs officer for concealing information of her assets in the statement submitted to the commission on May 4, 2009.

Death Anniversary

Today is the 12th death anniversary of Md Luthfur Rahman, senior income tax adviser, said a press release.

Monkirer Nesa

Today is the second death anniversary of Monkirer Nesa, mother of former president of BGMEA and Chairman of Dragon Group Mustafa Golam Kuddus.

National

Consumption of shoots threatens bamboo production in CHT

Bamboo production is under serious threat as ignorant locals are indiscriminately cutting shoots for human consumption, defying a ban.

Tower soon on Kuakata beach to watch nature

The Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism will build a 175 feet high tower on Kuakata sea beach so that tourists can enjoy natural beauty of the beach and watch both sunrise and sunset from the tower.

Patients suffer as druggists assoc bans fair price sale

Around 4000 diabetic patients of Swasthaseba Hospital in the town have to buy insulin and other medicines for higher prices from outside as Thakurgaon Chemists and Druggists Association allegedly forced medical representatives to stop supplying the items to the hospital pharmacy hospital three months ago.

JCD leader killed in infighting

A union level Jatiyatabadi Chhattra Dal (JCD) leader, who was seriously injured in a factional clash between two local JCD groups at Rayenda in Sharankhola upazila on Friday night, died at a clinic in Khulna on Monday night.

Man killed by son in Sylhet

An elderly man was killed allegedly by his son over a family dispute in the city`s Surma residential area on Sunday night.

Absconding accused jailed, 7 others acquitted

A special tribunal yesterday awarded an absconding accused ten years imprisonment in the case for serial bomb blasts in Dinajpur town on August 17, 2005.

Extortionists injure five of a family

Five of a family were injured as a gang of criminals stormed into their house and beat them up for not giving illegal toll at Bazitpur village in Keshobpur on Monday night.

Jubo Dal activists assault newsman

Jubo Dal men assaulted a journalist in Kalanka bus stand area of the district yesterday morning.

Criminals abduct teacher

Criminals abducted a schoolteacher from his home at Noddapara village in Madhyanagar upazila of Sunamganj district early yesterday.

Teachers form human chain

Teachers of non-government colleges formed a human chain, followed by a rally, in front of local press club yesterday to press home their seven-point demand.

Ex-UP member drowns

A man drowned in Bhabanipur River of the district on Monday night. The deceased, Kalachand Dewan, 65, was a former member of Katulee union in Sadar upazila. Katulee UP chairman Sumon Dewan said Kalachand fell into the water when he was crossing the river by a boat. Other passengers of the boat rescued him and sent him to Tangail General Hospital where he died after sometime.

Smuggled goods seized

Member of Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) seized Indian clothes and motorbike parts worth Tk 10 crore at Hili port in the district yesterday. They also arrested eight people in this connection, said Lt Col Mehdi Hasan, commanding officer of Joypurhat-3 Battalion. The BGB men of Joypurhat-3 and Phulbari-40 Battalions in a joint drive recovered the goods from four trucks at noon, he added.

KU admission tests

The admission tests of Khulna University (KU) for first year honours course of 2012-13 sessions will begin on October 14, 15 and 16. The decision was taken recently at an academic council meeting presided over by vice chancellor Md Saifuddin Shah. Acting Registrar Md Abdul Mannan said further details regarding the admission test will be available on the university website www.ku.ac.bd.

Truck driver shot

Criminals shot a truck driver at Hushtola in the district town on Monday night. The injured, Sumon Hossain, 32, son of Ayub Ali of Bezpara area of the town, was admitted to Jessore Medical College and Hospital. Police said when Sumon was standing in front of a tea stall, a gang on a motorbike opened fire on him, leaving him injured and fled the scene.

Man found dead

Police recovered the body of an old man from Nador River in Talora-Saranjabari area of Dupchancia upazila on Monday. Locals found the body of the octogenarian floating in the river and informed police at noon. The body was sent to the hospital morgue for autopsy.

Boy commits 'suicide'

A teenage boy allegedly committed suicide by hanging himself at Shantiganj Bazar in Dakkhin Sunamganj upazila of Sunamganj district on Sunday. The deceased was identified as Islam Uddin, 17, son of late Batir Ali of Shibpur village in the upazila. Locals said Islam Uddin committed suicide by hanging himself from the ceiling of the closed tea shop of his uncle Lukman Mia at about 4:00pm. The reason behind the suicide could not be known immediately.

Letters

Road safety in Bangladesh

After only living in Bangladesh for 18 weeks now, I am still curious as to how driver training is carried out, if any, to achieve the standard of driving and road safety seen on the roads daily.

Car insurance

I wonder whether anyone at the helm of affairs ever thought of the justification of having such a big gap between 'comprehensive' and '3rd party' insurance premium rate. While a 3rd party policy costs 500/600 taka, the 'comprehensive' policy costs more than taka 25000/-. Obviously 70 to 80 percent of the vehicle owners opt for the '3rd party' insurance just to maintain the formality of having car insurance. If the 'comprehensive' insurance rate was between Tk 5000/- and Tk 6000/-, perhaps 70 to 80 percent owners would have opted for the 'comprehensive' policy to enjoy the full insurance coverage. The insurance companies, in return, would have earned hundred times more revenues.

Unbearable electricity bill

I was simply shocked when I received my electricity bill of June, 2012. It was three times more than my usual monthly bill. One fails to understand when people are suffering immensely due to load shedding every now and then and ever increasing price hike of essential commodities, how can the government impose such an abnormal increase in power tariff again?

Humayun Ahmed, our king of words

At a time when almost everybody was reading Humayun Ahmed's novel, I hardly read the same thinking them to be of less literary value. No one then told me that there was a great message and food for thought and recreation in his deceptively simple, direct and light-hearted style of telling stories. Then when the writer married Shaon, an architect and artiste of his daughter's age, I bracketed him with other bohemian type popular and prolific writers of the world. How wrong I was then! I now very well understand that he lived his life aggressively.

How is Rexona?

A long-delayed letter from a dear old friend in Barisal has just arrived. She was very disturbed by your story, published on April 6th, of a 7-year old schoolgirl, Rexona, who was reported as having been beaten by a teacher so badly that she needed medical treatment that she could not afford as her family were too poor.

Negative Mombasa

Thank you for printing my letter “Kenyan Civic Sense” on 25 July. Readers should not have the misconception that I am in some sort of Mini-Paradise. What I wrote was basically correct, but there is also a darker side.

A great mistake!

The news says, South Korea's President apologized to the nation for corruption cases allegedly involving his elder brother and close aides (The Daily Star, July 25). In his speech to the nation he said, 'I bow my head and apologize…”

Readers Respond

Here are some comments that came in response to Tuesday's The Daily Star news report headlined “WB failed to give graft evidence”

International

Syrian aircraft strike Aleppo

Syrian combat aircraft and artillery pounded two areas of Aleppo yesterday as the army battled for control of the country's biggest city, but rebel fighters said troops loyal to President Bashar al-Assad had been forced to retreat.

Bill Clinton to give nomination address for Obama

Bill Clinton will sprinkle his political stardust on President Barack Obama's re-election bid by giving the nominating address at the Democratic Party convention, the campaign announced Monday.

India names new finance minister

In a change of a few key portfolios, Palaniappan Chidambaram was yesterday named as India's new finance minister after having been shifted from the home ministry.

Pakistan, US sign Nato convoy deal

Pakistan yesterday signed a deal with the United States governing arrangements for Nato convoys travelling to Afghanistan, seeking to draw a line under a seven-month border blockade.

Chavez in Brazil on first foreign trip in a year

The Venezuelan president, Hugo Chavez, has travelled to Brazil on his first official trip abroad since being diagnosed with cancer over a year ago.

Israel receives first contact from Mursi

Egypt's President Mohamed Mursi told Israel yesterday he wanted to work for peace in the Middle East, in the first official message sent by the Arab state's new Islamist leadership to the Jewish state.

Romney takes swipe at state of freedom in Russia

White House contender Mitt Romney, in Poland on his first visit behind the former Iron Curtain, took aim yesterday at the state of freedom in Russia.

Arafat widow lodges legal suit

The widow and daughter of Yasser Arafat yesterday launched legal action in France over claims that the veteran Palestinian leader died of radioactive polonium poisoning, their lawyer said.

Mali weighs unity govt

The clock was ticking yesterday for Bamako to announce a unity government that mediators hope will be able to wrest back Mali's north, occupied by al Qaeda-linked extremists.

Yemen forces, gunmen clash in Sanaa

A firefight erupted yesterday between Yemeni security forces and gunmen, dressed in police uniforms, who had been surrounding the headquarters of the interior ministry, witnesses said.

Arts & Entertainment

Cutting across cultures

Director of Alliance Française de Chittagong (AFC) Dr. Samuel Berthet is a man of culture. Berthet's childhood memories conjure up the diverse cultural atmosphere circling his scenic school Ecole du Lac (Pond) at Grenoble, France.

Monalisa's Eid plans

Model-actress Monalisa is now busy with shooting for Eid-special TV plays and tele-films. She is not doing any new TV serials though two serials -- “Joynal Jadukor” and “Pa Rekhechhi Jouboney”, featuring Monalisa, are on air.

“I don't see any of my movies”

Victor Banerjee may have wowed critics as a versatile actor but believe it or not he does not watch his movies as he “hates to look” at himself on screen.

Nishimon Bisharjan goes to India

Mahakal Natyasampraday will tour West Bengal, India with its latest production “Nishimon Bisharjan”. An adaptation of Rabindranath Tagore's “Bisharjan”, the play has been dramatised by Anon Zaman and directed by Ashik Rahman.

Madonna says boos at Paris gig were from “a few thugs”

Madonna has said the angry reaction from a crowd at her recent 45-minute show in Paris was from “thugs who were not my fans”.

Mega serial involving Bangladesh and West Bengal

A mega serial titled “Roshni”, an adaptation of the novel “Prem Jeno Ek” by Rupok Shah, featuring artistes from Bangladesh and West Bengal (India) will be telecast simultaneously starting from August 6 on Channel i and ETV Bangla.

Group print exhibition

Bengal Art Lounge will organise a group print exhibition titled “Monsoon Vernissage”, featuring the works of senior and promising painters of Bangladesh and India. The exhibition will open on August 3. Participating painters are Qayyum Chowdhury, Mahmudul Haque, Samarjit Roy Chowdhury, Monirul Islam, Kalidas Karmakar, Biren Shome, Hashem Khan, Anisuzzaman, Tapan Ghosh (India), Dhiraj Chowdhury (India), Sunil Das (India), Amitabh Sen Gupta (India), Shanu Lahiri (India), Ganesh Haloi (India), Sunil Das (India) and others.

OP-ED

Politics, power and Sheikh Hasina

At the height of the non-cooperation movement in March 1971, Bangabandhu was asked by one of the many foreign journalists then in Dhaka whether he was not worried about his defiance of the Pakistan government. His response was straight and fierce. "What do you mean government? I am the government," he said. It was a mark of the supreme confidence with which he was providing leadership to the Bengali nationalist struggle at the time.

Pawar's brinkmanship and coalition pains

Last week, Rahul Gandhi announced, after years of vacillation and sycophantic pleading, that he would play a proactive role in the ruling United Progressive Alliance and the Congress. This didn't greatly cheer up the party, which was beset by another crisis, caused this time by its third largest ally, Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar's Nationalist Congress Party.

President Mukherjee: What impact on Indo-Bangladesh ties?

Pranab Kumar Mukherjee, 76-year veteran politician and former finance minister was officially sworn in on July 25 by the Chief Justice of India, S.H. Kapadia as the 13th president of India. He is the first Bengali to adorn the highest post of the Republic of India since its inception.

Resignation of Abul: Some questions

Is Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina not crossing the line of jurisdiction by not submitting Syed Abdul Hossain's resignation letter to the president? Does she have such power to retain the resignation letter?

China: A good partner of the ASEAN

The 45th Asean Foreign Ministers' Meeting and its related meetings came to a conclusion in Phnom Penh, Cambodia on July 13. The Asean related meetings, which aim to chalk out the policies for the Asean and promote cooperation between Asean countries and their partners, have achieved positive results and deepened the understanding among participating members. Ministers and their representatives from Asean countries have reached wide consensus on achieving Asean Community.

This Day In History

August 1

527
Justinian I becomes the sole ruler of the Byzantine Empire.



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