News of: Tuesday, 28th of August, 2012
Rajuk has apparently failed to stop developers of illegal private housing schemes from destroying wetlands and floodplains around the capital despite a High Court order issued to this effect around two years ago.
A police report has found “Rab source” Ibrahim Hawlader and his associates guilty of attacking Jhalakathi college student Limon Hossain on Eid day.
With time running out, the prime minister yesterday asked the finance minister to convince the World Bank to renew its loan commitment for the Padma bridge without requiring her Economic Affairs Adviser Mashiur Rahman to resign.
The High Court yesterday issued a split verdict on a petition filed seeking its directives on the government to immediately start the admission process at medical and dental colleges by holding a test.
The central bank yesterday requested the finance ministry to reconstitute the board of directors of Sonali Bank Ltd for its failure to stop Tk 3,832-crore loan scam.
The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) of the Economist magazine sees a repetition of political confrontation over the caretaker government system before the next parliamentary election.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will leave for Tehran tomorrow to attend the 16th Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) summit on August 30-31 where Iran will seek support from world leaders to take a stand against Western sanctions.
The Department of Cooperatives (DoC) has detected financial irregularities of around Tk 1,450 crore in the operations of Destiny Multipurpose Cooperative Society Ltd (DMCSL), cash-cow of the controversial Destiny Group.
On the first day of the BDR mutiny in 2009, jawans had demanded the prime minister herself come to Pilkhana headquarters for negotiations.
A mother committed suicide after giving her two daughters poison in the capital's Kafrul area yesterday allegedly because of her husband's extramarital affair.
Opposition Leader Khaleda Zia, on behalf of the BNP-led 18-party alliance, is likely to declare its anti-government programme today.
The High Court has said the Speaker's observations that an HC judge has violated the constitution have "no legal effect" and are baseless in the eye of law.
Click here to read High Court observations on Speakers ruling
Kamal Hossain, detained by Rab on Saturday in connection with the murder of Dr Narayan Chandra Dutta alias Nitai, was picked up in place of another Kamal in a case of mistaken identity, detectives say.
The International Crimes Tribunal-2 yesterday asked Deputy Leader of parliament Syeda Sajeda Chowdhury to explain her position by September 10 over a contempt of court petition filed by the defence of war crimes accused Abdul Quader Mollah.
The cabinet yesterday approved proposals to amend the tobacco control law with provisions for three months' simple imprisonment and a fine of Tk 100,000 for airing any advertisement for tobacco products.
Experts from Bangladesh and India yesterday moved closer to finalising the terms of reference (ToR) for a joint study on the impacts of the proposed Tipaimukh hydropower project on river Barak.
A Bangladeshi national was shot to death in East Hartford, Connecticut, in the United States during an attempted robbery on Saturday night local time.
Indian Border Security Force (BSF) members hurled cocktail at a group of Bangladeshi people that killed one person inside its territory along Birampur border in Dinajpur.
While Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee cautioned a section of the media against “spreading lies” against her government, an MP of her own party, Kabir Suman, in his own right as songwriter, composer and singer, is using various media platforms to lambaste his own party and the chief.
Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh yesterday rejected a report by the official auditor that accused his government of missing out on billions of dollars of revenue by gifting away coal rights.
Greenpeace activists in an inflatable speedboat said yesterday they had attached themselves to the anchor of a Russian ship taking workers to the country's first Arctic oil production base.
Cuban police freed leading dissident Jose Daniel Ferrer on Sunday after three days behind bars, without charge, a fellow activist said.
Gunmen shot dead an Iraqi border forces brigadier general yesterday, among two people killed and five wounded in nationwide violence, security and medical officials said.
Rescue teams have found the body of an Australian man and three others killed when their small-chartered plane crashed in Indonesian Borneo, an official yesterday said.
Prime Minister's Press Secretary Abul Kalam Azad protested a report, published in The Daily Star on Monday, headlined “Padma Bridge Project: Shady Two Rally for Deal with KL”.
The Limon saga of relentless persecution by a state agency is a festering wound on our national conscience. It inflicts a deep scar on the state's obligations for the rule of law, human rights, and protection of a citizen against abuse of power by an agency of the government. In utter disregard of denunciation by civil society leaders, National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) chief, media commentators, vendetta against Limon shows no sign of abating. On the contrary, it takes on newer forms and intensity.
The World Health Organization's recently published World Health Statistics 2012 has found that Bangladesh spends less than the minimum amount of 44 USD or Tk 3,608 per person per year on healthcare. Among the SAARC countries, this puts Bangladesh with its 21 USD per person in a position only better than Pakistan, and in a much worse position than even war-torn Afghanistan.
Lionel Messi struck a late brace to give Barcelona victory over 10-man Osasuna that took them to the top of the table on goal difference over Rayo Vallecano on Sunday.
Anamul Haque, nicknamed Bijoy, is the rising star of Bangladesh cricket. The young wicketkeeper-batsman has been on the fringes of the national squad for a while but recently took charge of the Bangladesh U19 team for the World Cup in Australia. The youngster finished as the highest run scorer in the tournament (365 runs in six games at an average of 60.83) as Bangladesh scalped both Sri Lanka and Pakistan to finish a respectable seventh. The Daily Star's senior sports reporter, Bishwajit Roy, caught up with Anamul to talk about his performances in the tournament and about his hopes for the future.
The Bangladesh vice-captain Mahmudullah Riyad believes that playing in the ongoing Sri Lanka Premier (SLPL) will help the players when it comes to taking part in the ICC World Twenty20 to be held in Sri Lanka from September 18.
The talent hunt programme for the BFF Football Academy in Sylhet will start from September 1 at Upazila level across the country with 40 qualified coaches scouting budding players of U-14 and U-18 age group.
Even though Bangladesh national hockey team cruised to an emphatic 10-1 win over Bangladesh Krira Shikkha Protisthan in the final of the two warm-up matches yesterday, the team's coach Mahbub Haroon feels it will be a tough challenge to win the inaugural Hockey World League (HWL) which is going to start on August 31 in Singapore.
A 75-year-old athletics official was in a critical condition on Sunday after being speared through the throat by a javelin at an athletics meet in Duesseldorf.
Australia's cricket captain Michael Clarke has admitted that Pakistan's spin attack, led by Saeed Ajmal, Shahid Afridi and Mohammad Hafeez, is a threat to his team's chances.
Experienced batsman Michael Hussey said Australia were determined to bounce back by winning their limited series against Pakistan which starts in Sharjah on Tuesday.
Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardena on Monday paid tribute to Indian veteran VVS Laxman, who recently retired from international cricket, saying that the game will be poorer without one of the finest players of this generation.
England batsman Eoin Morgan admits Kevin Pietersen's fall from grace has emphasised the danger of letting individuals undermine team spirit.
New Zealand batsman Brendon McCullum has received an official reprimand after pleading guilty to a Level 1 breach of the ICC Code of Conduct during the fourth day's play in the first Test against India in Hyderabad on Sunday.
Kevin Pietersen has put on hold a six-figure offer by Cricket Australia to play for the Big Bash champions Sydney Sixers with the disgruntled batsman's attempts to repair his relationship with the England team management still taking time.
Martin Skrtel, scorer of Liverpool's opening goal, gifted Premier League champions Manchester City their second equaliser, and a point, in an absorbing 2-2 draw at Anfield on Sunday.
Last season's Ligue 1 top two, Montpellier and Paris Saint-Germain, are still awaiting their first wins this term after adverse results on Sunday left both teams in the bottom half of the table.
Real Madrid have signed on Tottenham Hotspur's Croatian midfielder Luka Modric for the next five seasons, the Spanish club announced Monday.
Promoted Sampdoria consigned AC Milan to a shock 1-0 defeat at San Siro on Sunday, Andrea Costa scoring the winner in the second half to give Milan the worst possible start after a traumatic close season.
Brazil will play home and away friendlies against Portugal in 2013 as part of a series of warm-up matches for the World Cup the country will host in 2014, according to federation officials here.
Schalke 04 were denied a winning start to their Bundesliga campaign when Adrian Nikci scored an 80th minute goal to give Hanover 96 a 2-2 draw on Sunday.
Ronaldinho scored a breathtaking individual goal for Atletico Mineiro in a stormy derby against Cruzeiro that produced three red cards and was interrupted as fans hurled debris on to the pitch.
Scope for legalising black money last fiscal year brought the government only Tk 38 crore in taxes, the lowest in four years.
Three separate platforms of more than 650 persons from different professions yesterday expressed their grave concerns about the future and autonomy of the Grameen Bank.
The government is working on a fee-based formula to give permanent transit for Bhutan in line with a framework agreement suggested by a panel, a senior official of the commerce ministry said yesterday.
The omnibus accounts of merchant banks will be replaced with separate beneficiary owner accounts, merchant bankers said yesterday.
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) will provide $150 million to Bangladesh to help improve capacity, efficiency and safety of the railway systems.
Share prices on the premier bourse fell, as the majority of investors booked profit from their previous purchase.
Mahbubur Rahman, president of International Chamber of Commerce, Bangladesh, participated in the fifth “Presidential Friends of Indonesia” programme 2012 in celebration of 67th Independence Day of Indonesia in Jakarta recently.
Islami Bank Bangladesh Ltd is going to launch mobile banking service 'Islami Bank mCash with Robi, the bank said in a statement yesterday.
Indian gold prices are likely to touch a new high this week, but could witness a correction in the next couple of sessions, giving traders in the futures market a good buying opportunity.
Dutch food and cosmetics giant Unilever expects poverty to rise in Europe as a result of the eurozone crisis and is therefore rethinking its marketing, according to a newspaper report Monday.
India and China pressed each other for greater market access for their products from medicines to Bollywood films at a meeting of trade ministers on Monday, seeking to expand commercial ties between the Asian giants as they battle a global downturn.
In August 2010, just a few months after Samsung Electronics launched its Galaxy smartphone, a team of Apple Inc lawyers flew to South Korea.
The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) forecasts 6.3 percent GDP growth for Bangladesh in the current fiscal year, far short of the government's estimate of 7.2 percent.
Song A-hyun was once confident she would follow in her father's footsteps -- graduate from one of the nation's best universities, land a plum job at a top firm and enjoy a high-flying career.
The nation remembers National Poet Kazi Nazrul Islam for his spirit against injustice and bigotry on the occasion of the legendary poet's 36th death anniversary yesterday.
The Law Commission has recommended amendments to Hindu family laws to legalise marriages among people of different castes and ensure Hindu women's equal rights to inheritance of ancestral property.
BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia will appear at a Dhaka court today in connection with the Zia Charitable Trust graft case, her counsel has confirmed.
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) will file a petition on Sunday with the High Court demanding a judicial probe into the incidents involving Jhalkathi college student Limon Hossain who was maimed by Rab last year.
Police yesterday foiled a prescheduled demonstration of medical and dental college admission seekers demanding cancellation of the government decision to enroll students to the institutions based on their SSC and HSC results instead of holding admission tests.
Hundreds of medical college admission seekers in Chittagong city yesterday staged a sit-in blockading the city's GEC intersection for two hours.
Amid media reports that the UAE has slapped a ban on issuing new visas to Bangladeshis, a top UAE official yesterday confirmed that there is no Bangladeshi visa ban in place.
A prosecution witness of the sensational 10-truck arms haul cases, Helal Uddin Bhuiyan, told a Chittagong court yesterday that he was forced to give a false deposition to a court hearing the case in 2006.
The Detective Branch of police yesterday arrested a youth from Tongi of Gazipur in connection with the murder of a contractor listed with Dhaka Water and Sewerage Authority.
Speakers at a seminar yesterday stressed ensuring accountability of the government and non-government organisations (NGOs) in distributing humanitarian assistance.
After a seven-week closure since the July 8 arson, Sylhet's MC College will reopen tomorrow.
The Buet syndicate meeting yesterday suggested the institution's vice-chancellor to hold discussions with deans, directors and provosts to conduct this year's admission test as soon as possible by holding the academic council meeting.
Vietnam is keen to improve political and economic relations with Bangladesh in the coming days, newly appointed Vietnamese Ambassador to Bangladesh Nguyen Quang Thug said yesterday.
The International CHT Commission (CHTC) has voiced worries over a recent incident of raping of an 11-year-old indigenous girl allegedly by a policeman and demanded exemplary punishment for the perpetrator.
The Department of Environment (DoE) stopped a massive destruction of agricultural land in the name of an agro project and seized earth-filling equipment in Joydevpur of Gazipur district yesterday.
President Zillur Rahman yesterday urged Malaysia to recruit more skilled, semi-skilled and unskilled manpower from Bangladesh to help contribute to the country's socio-economic development.
Two organisations working for the rights of minority communities yesterday protested the August 4 violence in Dinajpur and demanded exemplary punishment for the people responsible for it.
A fire gutted 14 plastic warehouses and plastic recycling factories at Islambagh of Old Dhaka early yesterday.
A woman was killed as a bus ran her over on Khulna-Jessore highway in Gilatala area in Khulna city yesterday.
A schoolboy died after being struck by lightning at Mughda in the capital yesterday.
Eight houses were gutted in a fire in Hathazari upazila of Chittagong yesterday.
An eight-member team of Korean Overseas Volunteers (KOVs) arrived in Dhaka on Sunday to share their knowledge and experience with Bangladeshi citizens.
A youth allegedly committed suicide by hanging himself with a tree in Banshkhali upazila of Chittagong yesterday noon.
Muhammad Aez Uddin, father of journalist Alpha Arzu, passed away at his residence in Sherpur yesterday morning. He was 74.
Md Sirajul Islam Montu, a freedom fighter of Ishwardi upazila, died of old age complications at Suhrawardy Hospital in the capital yesterday morning. He was 75.
Unscrupulous people have continued illegal excavation and sand lifting from Kirtonkhola and adjoining Sugandha River for over a month, threatening newly opened Shaheed Abdur Rob Serniabat Bridge over the Kirtankhola River.
Six people, including five forest department employees, who were allegedly kidnapped in Matiranga upazila on Sunday were rescued yesterday.
Internal feud in Gaibandha BNP surfaced after district unit general secretary brought some allegations against the president at a press conference here yesterday.
Physicians, nurses and employees at Thakurgaon Swasthaseba Hospital brought out a procession in the town yesterday, protesting attack on their colleagues and demanding arrest and punishment of the culprits.
A man dunked his two minor daughters to death at Mathpara village in Chitalmari upazila of the district yesterday morning.
A group of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) activists beat up a constable at Alamdanga police station on Sunday night.
Obscene dances and gambling are going on at Moharajpur Eid Mela (fair) in Sadar upazila of Chapainawabganj district under the nose of law enforcers and local administration.
District health administration yesterday sealed Tekerhat Central Clinic in Rajoir upazila where two newborn babies died due to alleged negligence of the clinic authorities.
Gobindaganj police rescued two abducted college students on Sunday night from village Rahabol under Shibganj police station in Bogra district.
Two teenage boys allegedly committed suicide in Ataikula upazila on Sunday. They are Ismail Hossain, 18, son of Nurul Islam of village Karikarpara and Rafikul Islam, 15, son of Shajahan Ali of Shadullahpur village. Family sources said Ismail took his life by taking poison early in the morning following a family feud. Rafikul Islam hanged himself at his bedroom at about 11am on Sunday. He was suffering from illness for long. Failing to bear it anymore, he committed suicide, police said. Officer in-charge of Ataikula PS Md. Robiul Hassan said police recovered both the bodies and sent those to Pabna Medical College Hospital morgue for autopsy. Two UD cases were filed, he said.
Banned current nets worth Tk 7 lakh seized by Coastguard members were destroyed in Sharankhola upazila headquarters here on Sunday evening. KM Mamunur Rashid, Lieutenant Commander of Bangladesh Coastguard Mongla (West Zone) said a team of Coastguard launched a drive in Baleswar River and seized 10,000 meters of banned current nets from different fishing boats in the afternoon. Later, the seized nets were burnt down in presence of officials and local people. No fisherman, however, was arrested in this connection.
A young man and a housewife were electrocuted in the district yesterday. The victims are Faruk Hossain, 25, son of Aminul Islam of Baliakandi village under Chuadanga district and Hena Khatun, 40, wife of Younus Ali of Roghunathpur village under Sadar upazila. Faruk is an electrician at Datta Nagar Agriculture Farm. Joint director Mahbubur Rahman of the farm said, at around 9:30am, Faruk was repairing an electric line of the farm. Suddenly, he came in contact with a live wire. He was rushed to Jhenidah Sadar Hospital where the on duty doctors declared him dead. Hena went to a banana orchard near her house at noon where she came in contact with a live electrical wire and died on the spot, her husband Younus Ali said.
Villagers caught a youth red-handed at village Genduguri in Hatibandha upazila on Sunday while raping a schoolgirl and handed him over to the police. The culprit was identified as Mizanur Rahman Milon, 25, son of Ansar Ali, of Genduguri village in the upazila. Police said, the culprit raped a class eight student of Genduguri High School, at the village at a bamboo cluster when the schoolgirl was going to the house of her tutor alone on Sunday morning. As the victim shouted for help, local people rushed in and caught Milon red-handed.
Police recovered the body of a housewife from a village in Sadar upazila early Sunday. The victim was identified as Jharna Begum, 28, wife of Zahirul Islam of Pashcim Jainkathi village. Jharna was mother of three children. Md. Monirul Islam, OC of Patuakhali police station said Jharna went to bed after having dinner with her husband. But she went out of the house at about 11pm. At about 1am, Zahirul started to search for his wife. He informed police about the matter and later police found Jharna's body floating in the nearby pond at about 3am. Police could not say any reason behind her death.
Pakistani Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf yesterday won a few more weeks' breathing space in a long-running legal wrangle over the reopening of graft cases against President Asif Ali Zardari.
Taliban Islamist insurgents beheaded 17 party-goers, 10 Afghan soldiers were killed and two Nato troops shot dead in a new insider attack in a bloody day across Afghanistan, officials said yesterday.
Syrian opposition activists have drafted a political roadmap after a possible ouster of President Bashar al-Assad, drawing on examples from other states that moved to democracy such as South Africa.
A court in Myanmar yesterday sentenced three local United Nations staff to prison for participating in recent sectarian unrest, a government official said.
Normal life was paralysed in northeastern state of Assam yesterday by a 12-hour general strike called by a right wing Hindu group to protest the ethnic violence even as the situation strife-hit areas was reported calm with no fresh incident reported.
Gunmen shot dead five people in attacks on two buses as rebels in Pakistan's troubled province of Baluchistan staged a strike to mark the anniversary of a tribal leader's death, officials said yesterday.
Rebels killed at least 24 soldiers when they ambushed a South Sudanese army convoy, a military spokesman said yesterday, in the latest outbreak of violence in restive Jonglei state.
An explosion at a cement plant in southern China yesterday killed at least seven people, state media said, the latest in a string of industrial accidents in the rapidly developing country.
Two female Pussy Riot punk rockers who are being hunted by police for having taken part in a protest stunt against President Vladimir Putin have fled Russia in order to evade arrest, the group said on Sunday.
One person was killed and two churches were looted in Kenya's port of Mombasa yesterday, after the killing of a radical cleric linked to Somalia's al-Qaeda allied Shebab, officials and witnesses said.
Gunmen shot dead an Iraqi border forces brigadier general yesterday, among two people killed and five wounded in nationwide violence, security and medical officials said.
Arts & Entertainment
Two experimental works -- Prachyanat's deconstructive adaptation of the Tagore classic “Raja” and Habiganj Shilpakala Academy's “Jyotishanghita” -- set the pace for the second day (August 26) of the ongoing Selim Al Deen Festival 2012 at the Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy. The plays were respectively staged at the Experimental Theatre Hall and National Theatre Hall.
Eid is a season for exchange of gifts, be it in the form of simple saris, delicately embroidered shawls, or semi-precious earrings. They could also be chocolates, books or curios, carpets and wall hangings. Even quilted nakshikantha bedspreads, cross-stitch sofa-backs, or embroidered table mats figure in the gifts list.
On the occasion of the 90th birth anniversary of poet Abul Hossain, the family members of the poet will organise a discussion and cultural programme tomorrow at Ruposhi Bangla Hotel in the city.
Come Eid and an array of programmes kept viewers hooked to the small screen. However, as always, a class apart was the annual Eid TV programme, “Krishoker Eid Ananda”, aired on Channel i.
Thirty seven-year-old tabla player Shukumar Roy has never looked back since he first tried his hand at the keyboard. Today he is much in demand in musical programmes in Jhenidah and neighbouring districts in Khulna division. He also has the distinction of accompanying famed Bangladeshi singers on the keyboard.
A fiercely anti-Obama docudrama directed by Mumbai-raised conservative and Christian writer Dinesh D'Souza jumped over the weekend into the top 10 in North America with an estimated $6.2 million.
Jerry Nelson, the puppeteer and voice of Sesame Street's Count von Count, has died aged 78.
The world rejoiced as the United Nations' general assembly adopted a resolution in July 2010 declaring water and sanitation to be a basic human right. Yet two years on, governments around the world have yet to come up with concrete long-term policies that could help reverse decades- old neglect to water. More importantly, where river systems cross national boundaries the lack of regional cooperation on the sharing of precious water remains on the political backburner. While nations have gone to war over territory, water too soon could become the bone of contention leading to major conflicts in some of the most densely populated regions of the world. Such sentiments have already been voiced. In March, 2012, British Energy Secretary Ed Davey shared his concerns with global policymakers that "water wars could be a real prospect in coming years as states struggle with the effects of climate change, growing demand for water and declining state of energy."
The number of people displaced by Assam's ethnic violence since July 20 is about to cross the 5-lakh mark, making this India's largest internal migration, comparable to the cross-border influx during Partition or the Bangladesh War.
Critical thinking -- the ability or willingness to use reason -- is a trait that not many Bengalis can call their own. Unreason prevails. In this we Bengalis are not unique; but in any conceivable international index of unreason we will probably score high. This perhaps has always been so. Our brand of irrationality has something In common with our raging rivers, cyclones and tidal waves. More often, unreason has the numbing pervasiveness of the heat and humidity of an endless summer. Whatever the genre, though, there is little cause to doubt that the frequency of the manifestation of irrationality has been on the increase. Unlike the weather, we not only can talk about it, we must talk about it and perhaps can do something about it.
Silent genocide has started, says a newspaper headline. The media have regularly been highlighting the grim situation the nation is already in. Yet neither the public nor the government is getting out of the deep slumber they are in. The genocide is being committed by using poison in our food and drinks.
The Ottoman Turks occupy Belgrade.
Science & Life
Scientists have pinpointed a gene that enables rice plants to produce around 20% more grain by increasing uptake of phosphorus, an important, but limited, plant nutrient.
In 1969, Neil Armstrong became the first man to walk on the Moon and arguably the most famous man in the Universe.
Archimedes was an ancient Greek mathematician, physicist and engineer, born in the seaport city of Syracuse, Sicily in 287 BC. His father was an astronaut. He was educated at the museum in Alexandria Egypt. He worked out the famous Archimedes' principle, which states that an object immersed in a fluid experiences a buoyant force that is equal in magnitude to the force of gravity on the displaced fluid. He has also demonstrated the lever-law.
Astronomers have reported the first evidence of a planet's destruction by its own, aging host star. Evidence indicates a planet was devoured as the star began expanding into a “red giant” the stellar equivalent of advanced age, scientists say.
Increased rainfall and temperature due toclimate change could bring benefits to South-East Asian agriculture, a study suggests, contradicting more common expectations that a warmer planet will reduce agricultural productivity in the region.
The catacombs of Rome contain Christian art of both beauty and complexity. This work was drawn on a ceiling near the Crypts of Lucina and has been interpreted as an image of Daniel (at center) with lions on all sides. Images of the Good Shepherd and a woman, possibly the Virgin Mary, surround them. The image is from the Roma Sotterranea, a volume discussing the catacombs, published in 1869. Early scholarship dated this painting to the second century although more recent work suggests that the earliest evidence for Christian occupation of the catacombs doesn't begin until the early third.
A phonon is a quantized sound wave - a collective vibrational mode of a solid (or liquid). In a crystalline solid, the idea is that the atoms in the solid are displaced, at any given instant, from their equilibrium positions. For a single phonon, the instantaneous displacements are periodic in space (that is, there is some wavelength, where atoms separated by an integer number of wavelengths are displaced the same amount). The displaced atoms feel restoring forces due to their interactions with neighbors, and will tend to oscillate in time around their equilibrium positions.