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People living longer

People living longer

The people of Bangladesh are living longer, reflecting a significant progress in the country's health and population status. Life expectancy rose to 69.4 years in 2012 from 66.8 years in 2008, an increase of 2.6 years in four years, according to a new survey of Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS). Experts attribute the progress to overall economic development, expansion of health services, better access to telecommunications and a rise in literacy rate. The BBS, in the survey, has also found declining birth and death rates. "Reduction in child mortality has a direct link to the rise in life expectancy at birth. Bangladesh has been doing quite well in reducing child mortality. So life...

Energy deal salvaged

The eight South Asian nations finally signed a deal yesterday to create a seamless electricity grid, salvaging the 18th Saarc summit that had been overshadowed by hostilities between India and Pakistan. The development came as Pakistan gave its consent to the Saarc Framework Agreement for Energy Cooperation (Electricity), one of the three pacts supposed to be inked at the summit in Kathmandu. Pakistan on Wednesday had opposed all three deals. The other two agreements are Saarc Motor Vehicles Agreement for the Regulation...

City caught by classical spell

City caught by classical spell

On the stroke of midnight when the whole city went to sleep, a stadium full of people remained wide awake, watching the awe-inspiring performance of a Bharatanatyam artist. Vidushi Malavika Sarukkai left more than tens of thousands of audience dazzled with her poise, grace and fluid movements on the opening night of the...

Hughes stops

Hughes stops

Phillip Hughes died yesterday as a result of the injuries he sustained when struck by a bouncer two days ago, Cricket Australia has confirmed. He was 25 and would turn 26 the day after tomorrow. Team doctor Peter Brukner confirmed the news in a statement released on Thursday afternoon. "It is my sad duty to...

Scientist Qadri on UN's tech panel

Scientist Qadri on UN's tech panel

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has appointed Bangladeshi scientist Firdausi Qadri and nine others to a high-level panel to advise him on proposed Technology Bank aimed at helping the world's least developed countries emerge out of poverty. A prominent immunologist, Qadri is now serving as director at the Centre for Vaccine Sciences of the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (ICDDR, B) and is an author of more than 200 peer-reviewed scientific papers. She has over 25 years' experience of developing vaccines for cholera. Recently, she has developed a new technique to diagnose typhoid and paratyphoid fever. Firdausi Qadri was awarded the 2013 CNR Rao Prize by The World Academy of...

Modi, Sharif shake hands, meet at Saarc retreat

Modi, Sharif shake hands, meet at Saarc retreat

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Pakistani premier Nawaz Sharif shook hands and met briefly during the retreat at the Saarc summit yesterday, a day after Modi conspicuously avoided Sharif while he met five other South Asian leaders here. "Yes, they have met and shook hands at the retreat," Nepal Foreign Minister Mahendra Bahadur...

Ailing Biman wakes up to rude reality

Biman has finally decided to improve surveillance on its staff after doing nothing for seven months since 105kg gold was found in the toilet of a plane. This too had to be done by the civil aviation minister's influence, not by Biman on its own accord. Days after the haul on April 26, customs intelligence wrote to the managing director of Biman to beef up cargo hanger, aircraft security and improve staff surveillance at Shahjalal International Airport. Biman just sat on the...

Mamata's tribute to Mujib

The West Bengal government plans to set up a chair named after Father of the Bangalee Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in Calcutta University. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee wants the chair to be inaugurated by Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. “We want to create a 'Bangabandhu Chair' in the Calcutta University after Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and we want his daughter Sheikh Hasina to inaugurate it," Mamata told PTI news agency in Kolkata. Sheikh Mujibur Rahman studied at Kolkata's Islamia College (now known as...

Beware, tigers!

Beware, tigers!

The cinematography is good, no doubt. But it is not really about how good the sound or the visual effect is when you are making a film on the tigers of the Sundarbans, a globally endangered species.  What Kamal Sadanah shows in his debut film, Roar- Tigers of the Sundarbans, is outrageous to the...

Backpage

Cops clearing walkers' way

Cops clearing walkers' way

Although the number of jaywalkers dwindled on the third day of the week-long drive against jaywalkers, the authorities concerned are yet to mark zebra crossings at some intersections on the Kazi Nazrul Islam Avenue for people to cross the roads. Many pedestrians complained that they remain in the dark about finding the designated places...

Stop entry of militants

Dhaka is set to seek cooperation from New Delhi in preventing Bangladeshi militants and other criminals from crossing the border and bringing back those believed to be holed up in India. A seven-member team of law enforcement and intelligence agencies that reached Kolkata yesterday evening will take up the matter when it meets Indian National Investigation Agency (NIA) officials. Last week, a four-member NIA team, headed by its chief Sharad Kumar, visited Dhaka in connection with the October 2 Burdwan blast...

Tareque, Arif all along involved

Former Rab officials Lt Col Tareque Sayeed Mohammad and Maj Arif Hossain were involved in the Naryanganj seven-murder from beginning till end, a Rab probe has found. “A group of Rab members led by Tareque and Arif worked for councillor Nur Hossain to abduct and kill his archrival councillor Nazrul Islam,” a member of the Rab probe team told The Daily Star yesterday. “But the Rab team had to abduct and kill six others as they witnessed Nazrul's abduction.” The Rab headquarters...

Nisha Biswal in city

Nisha Biswal in city

Nisha Desai Biswal, US assistant secretary of state for South and Central Asian affairs, arrived here yesterday on a three-day visit. She will have meetings with top government officials and leaders of opposition party, business community, labour and RMG sectors. She will also meet BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia at her Gulshan residence at 6:00pm today, Khaleda's press wing member Sayrul Kabir Khan told UNB. BNP acting secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, party chairperson's advisers Riaz Rahman and Sabihuddin Ahmed; and Vice-chairman Shamsher Mobin Chowdhury will be present, he added. This is Biswal's second trip to Bangladesh as she had been here soon after taking over as the assistant secretary of state for...

Unilever boss visits Dhaka

Unilever boss visits Dhaka

Paul Polman, chief executive of Unilever Plc, visited Bangladesh on November 26-27 as part of his regular trip to key Unilever markets across the world, the company said in a statement yesterday. Sanjiv Mehta, executive vice president-South Asia cluster, accompanied him, the statement added. “I am very happy to have the opportunity to visit Bangladesh for the second time. It has been a very energising and inspiring visit,” Polman said. The Unilever boss said he was pleased with the manner in which Unilever Bangladesh has delivered on the commitments of Unilever Sustainable Living Plan and that the company brands were at the forefront of making a positive impact on the lives of...

New cop shooting video emerges in US

Video of US police officers shooting dead a 12-year-old black boy with a replica gun seconds after confronting him has stoked anger in the country as protests in Ferguson dwindled following two days of unrest. Surveillance video released Wednesday showed that the boy, Tamir Rice, was shot last weekend only seconds after two officers arrived in a patrol car at a Cleveland, Ohio park. Audio broadcast on US TV shows that a man who first observed the boy waving and pointing...

31 members of dope gangs jailed in city

Some 31 members of six dope gangs have been awarded different terms of jail following arrest from different places in the capital on Wednesday night. Detective Branch (DB) of police nabbed them after raiding Paltan, Gulistan, Kamalapur, Mohakhali, Airport and Mirpur areas. They were given imprisonment from one month to two years, said DB Joint Commissioner Monirul Islam of Dhaka Metropolitan Police yesterday. Executive magistrates M Abdul Kuddus and Sarwoer Alam of the DMP passed the sentences, he told reporters at...

It's so easy to grab lands

It's so easy to grab lands

Twenty-nine Marma families have been compelled to live inside some shabby huts since they were allegedly forced out of their ancestral land at Lama upazila in Bandarban nearly seven months ago. They had no other option but to flee their homes at Mangbichar Baching Marma Para as the land grabbers in the name of...

Kazirbazar Bridge In Sylhet

Opening delayed again

The construction of the much-awaited Kazirbazar Bridge over the Surma river which again remained suspended for last two months cannot be completed before next March even though the deadline was December 2014, said roads and highways officials. The construction will resume in a week or two soon after the food and railway departments remove their depot and quarter, informed Iftekhar Kabir, additional chief engineer of Roads & Highways, Sylhet zone, after Road Transportation and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader visited the...

GP agent staff shot, Tk 28 lakh snatched

Muggers shot a Grameenphone agent's staff and snatched Tk 28 lakh from them in Shornopotti area of the district town last night. Kazi Jinnat Alai, the GP agent, said his two staffs Ferdaus Kazi, 22, and Korban Ali Kazi, 28, were going to Pubali Bank at Kaporpotti by a rickshaw from his office on College Road to deposit the money. Four to five masked men stopped the rickshaw at Sornopotti, shot the two, snatched the money and left the scene by...

War crimes suspect held in Kishoreganj

Law enforcers arrested a war crimes suspect from Kishoreganj's Pulerghat area last night, around nine hours after the issuance of arrest warrant by the International Crimes Tribunal-1. Sub-inspector of Kishoreganj Sadar Police Station Shafiqul Islam said detectives arrested Shamsuddin Ahmed, 60, a lawyer of a Kishoreganj court, at about 8:00pm. On Tuesday, International Crimes Tribunal Investigation Agency submitted a probe report to the prosecution against Shamsuddin and his brother Nasir Uddin Ahmed. According to the probe report, Shamsuddin and Nasir joined the...

Mirror to replace air cooler?

Mirror to replace air cooler?

A mirror that sends heat into the frigid expanse of space has been designed by scientists to replace air-conditioning units that keep buildings cool on Earth. Researchers believe the mirror could slash the amount of energy used to control air temperatures in business premises and shopping centres by doing away with power-hungry cooling systems. Around...

US proposes stricter ozone limits

The US Environmental Protection Agency announced plans Wednesday to strengthen emission regulations for ozone, a smog-causing pollutant blamed for respiratory ailments affecting millions of Americans. But the measures prompted immediate criticism from Republicans and industry groups, who said they would be too costly, without much benefit. Recent scientific studies, the EPA said, show current standards leave too much harmful smog in the air. Exposure at those levels, and at levels below the current maximum, "can pose serious threats to public health," including...

2 cops suspended for helping 'militants' talk over phone

Chittagong Metropolitan Police yesterday suspended two of its constables for helping five arrested militant suspects talk over the mobile phone. The constables are Khorshed Alam and Md Ayub of Detective Branch (DB) of police. CMP Deputy Commissioner (DB) Kusum Dewan suspended the duo for helping the alleged militants talk over the phone while they were in DB custody, said sources. On Sunday, detectives caught the alleged militants from a hotel in the port city. They are Alam Yasin of Pakistan, and Abdul...

Cigarettes worth Tk 30 lakh recovered at Ctg airport

Officials of Customs Intelligence recovered 560 cartons of American cigarettes at Shah Amanat International Airport yesterday afternoon. Acting on a tip-off, the officials found the cigarettes, worth around Tk 30 lakh, inside three sofas at around 2:00pm yesterday, said Mostafizur Rahman, deputy director of customs intelligence.   One Foysal Ahmed brought the sofas from Dubai on an Air Arabia flight on November 23, he added.

India court slams Delhi's worsening air pollution

India's environment court has slammed the government over the capital's horrendous air pollution, which it said was "getting worse" every day, and ordered a string of measures to bring it down. The National Green Tribunal directed all vehicles older than 15 years be taken off New Delhi roads, pollution checks undertaken for all state-run buses and air purifiers installed at the city's busy markets. Environmentalists welcomed Thursday the decision, saying policy makers were failing to heed the "emergency" facing the city...

Haiti cholera outbreak kills 132 in 2014

Haiti's cholera epidemic has killed 132 people and may have infected nearly 15,000 others so far this year, a UN agency report said Wednesday. The Caribbean country's cholera outbreak started in 2010 and "an unacceptable number of people have been affected, with nearly 712,330 suspected cases and an estimated 8,655 deaths," the report by the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said, citing Haiti's public health ministry. In 2014, there have been a suspected 14,869 cases and 132...

Afghan senate approves foreign troops staying on

Afghanistan's upper house of parliament yesterday approved two agreements with the US and Nato allowing about 12,500 troops to remain in the country next year as concerns grow over the worsening insurgency. The Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) with the United States, and a similar pact with NATO, were approved by the lower house of parliament on Sunday before being sent to the senate.  

Business

Unilever goes from strength to strength

Unilever goes from strength to strength

Innovations and sustainability are at the heart of growth. That's why Unilever is integrating both into its business strategy. Paul Polman, chief executive officer of Unilever Plc, says he is happy with the progress in driving the company's sustainability agenda in Bangladesh and this has contributed significantly to the strong growth of business here. Polman spoke to The Daily Star in an email interview to give an overview of Unilever's strategy and the positive contribution being made by markets like Bangladesh to its global business growth. The Daily Star (TDS): For nearly two and a half decades, Bangladesh clocked about 6 percent growth and the economy is expected to maintain...

LDCs must focus on higher productivity

LDCs must focus on higher productivity

Least-developed countries like Bangladesh will have to focus on structural transformation and human development to achieve the sustainable development goals in the post-2015 period, said an UN report. The countries need to go beyond economic growth to complete a virtuous circle of sustainable economic and human development, said the Least Developed Countries Report 2014...

At least 10 years needed to move out of LDC list: economist

Bangladesh will need at least ten years to move out of the list of least-developed countries as none of the criteria was met to come out of the list, Debapriya Bhattacharya, distinguished fellow of the Centre for Policy Dialogue, said yesterday.      Bangladesh is not a potential candidate for an uplift in a UN review next year that will decide which country will shake off the LDC status, he said. Even if Bangladesh fulfils all the criteria in -- per capita...

Challenge conventional economic models

Challenge conventional economic models

Nobel laureate Muhammad Yunus has called for collective effort at both academic and practical levels to challenge conventional economic models and create openings through social business. Unlike established economic models, social business believes that human beings are not inherently selfish and that everyone, irrespective of their age, education and background, has the capacity to be entrepreneurs, he said. “We have to challenge the existing well-argued thinking and establish that all young people are entrepreneurs and should not be condemned to be mere job seekers,” he said in his speech at the second Global Social Business Summit Research Conference on Tuesday. The event, which was a curtain-raiser for the sixth Global Social Business...

Electricity prospects brighten on Saarc deal

A power deal signed by Saarc countries in Kathmandu yesterday has raised hopes for cross-border electricity trade among the South Asian nations through a common grid. Once the network comes into being, power-starved countries like Bangladesh will be able to import surplus electricity of their neighbours. Officials said the deal would further strengthen regional cooperation in the power sector and allow Bangladesh to import electricity from neighbouring countries such as Nepal and Bhutan that have immense potential in hydropower. Bangladesh now imports...

Banks cash in on dollar demand

Some banks have artificially created a greenback scarcity to charge more from importers, seeing a spike in imports. Within a span of 15 days, some banks have inflated the dollar rate by Tk 2-3, although the greenback has not appreciated as much, several importers told The Daily Star. Abul Bashar Chowdhury, chairman of Chittagong-based BSM Group, said his firm bought dollars at Tk 77.35-77.40 each ten days ago. Now, some banks are demanding Tk 79.25 for a dollar. The sudden spiral in...

Online grocers come up trumps in India's e-commerce boom

Online grocers come up trumps in India's e-commerce boom

Put off by snarled city traffic and a shortage of parking, more Indians are shopping for groceries online, helping e-tailers like Bigbasket.com and Localbanya.com turn in profits while supermarkets are struggling. The online grocers benefit from low overheads, as they store goods in warehouses outside big cities where commercial rents are sky-high. Some like...

Opec begins pivotal meet as oil prices hit fresh lows

Opec ministers met Thursday to decide whether to slash oil production amid a glut in global supplies, sending crude prices to new lows ahead of their pivotal vote. The 12-nation oil cartel is under pressure from its poorer members like Venezuela and Ecuador to cut output as collapsing prices have slashed their precious revenues. But its powerful Gulf members have rejected calls to turn down the taps unless they are guaranteed market share in the highly competitive arena, particularly in the...

Coca-Cola partnership to create biggest bottler in Africa

The Coca-Cola Company Thursday announced a partnership to form its largest soft drinks bottling company in Africa, serving "high growth" countries on the continent. The Coca-Cola company together with British drinks giant SABMiller and Gutsche Family Investment, a South Africa private firm, will join forces to form Coca-Cola Beverages Africa. "The new bottler, Coca-Cola Beverages Africa, will serve 12 high-growth countries accounting for approximately 40 percent of all Coca-Cola beverage volumes in Africa," said a statement. It will be majority owned by...

US automakers aim for luxury market in China

US automakers aim for luxury market in China

China is the new El Dorado for US automakers looking to develop sales of their luxury brands, which globally are lagging behind German and Japanese competitors. General Motors, the largest US automaker, already sells more cars in China each month than it does in its home market and expects that to continue. "Our joint ventures...

US cruise liner taps into growing Southeast Asian market

US-based Princess Cruises, the world's third largest cruise line, launched its first Singapore-based service on Thursday in a move to tap into the emerging Southeast Asian cruise travel market. Industry players said a fast-rising middle class, which has fuelled a boom in budget air travel, is also likely to drive demand in the region's fledgling cruise market. More than 2,500 guests were due to depart from the city-state Thursday evening aboard the 116,000-tonne Sapphire Princess for an 11-day voyage that will...

German labour market unfazed by economic weakness

The German labour market continued to shine in November, shrugging off the current economic weakness, with unemployment now at its lowest level since unification, official data showed on Thursday. The number of people registered as unemployed in Europe's biggest economy fell by a seasonally-adjusted 14,000 in November to 2.872 million, the Federal Labour Office said. That is the lowest number since December 1991, although the jobless total came close to these levels in early 2012. The unemployment rate -- which measures the...

Toyota recalls more cars for dangerous Takata air bags

Toyota Motor Corp said on Thursday it would recall 57,000 vehicles globally to replace potentially deadly air bags made by Takata Corp, as a safety crisis around the Japanese auto parts maker looks far from being contained. Toyota's action follows a recall by rival Honda Motor Co for the same problem two weeks ago after revelations of a fifth death, in Malaysia, linked to Takata's air bag inflator. More than 16 million vehicles have been recalled worldwide since 2008 over...

Stock turnover hits four-month low

Turnover on the Dhaka Stock Exchange fell 15.6 percent to a four-month low of Tk 264 crore yesterday from the previous day, as investors remained inactive to take fresh exposure amid a bearish trend. DSEX, the benchmark general index of the DSE, ended the day at 4,772.55 points, after gaining 15.94 points or 0.33 percent. The shariah index of the Dhaka bourse, DSES, fell 1.84 points or 0.17 percent to close at 1,106.86. Combined with heightened volatility and low turnover, the closing...

Bangladesh, India team up in leather sector

Leather manufacturers from India and Bangladesh yesterday signed a memorandum of understanding to intensify cooperation, foster joint ventures and explore possibilities of direct investments. The Indian Footwear Components Manufacturers Association (IFCOMA) and the Leather Goods and Footwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association of Bangladesh signed the agreement on the sidelines of a leather sector fair at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre in Dhaka. The deal provides for frequent interactions, exchange of information and development of healthy business relationship between the two associations, the...

Amazon cuts Fire phone price to ignite sales

Amazon on Wednesday slashed the price of Fire mobile phones that stalled after launch early this year, becoming a drag on the US online retail titan's bottom line. The price cut, which Amazon said would last until December 1, was the second for Fire and was included in a set of holiday-shopping season deals announced for items including Kindle e-readers. Fire smartphones free of accompanying contracts with telecom carriers are available for $199 and come with a year-long membership to Amazon...

New chairman for BDBL

New chairman for BDBL

Md Yeasin Ali has recently joined Bangladesh Development Bank as chairman, the bank said in a statement yesterday. Prior to joining BDBL, Ali was the chairman of Bangladesh House Buil-ding Finance Corporation. He has previously served Rajshahi Krishi Unnayan Bank, Bangladesh Shilpa Bank, Rupali Bank and Dutch-Bangla Bank as managing director, according to the statement. He has also worked with Bangladesh Krishi Bank and Agrani Bank.

Philippine economic growth slows in third quarter

Growth slowed sharply in the Philippine economy in the third quarter because of typhoon damage and falling public spending, officials said Thursday. The economy grew by 5.3 percent in the three months to September -- below expectations -- and 5.8 percent through the first nine months of the year. Deputy chief statistician Romeo Recide added that gross domestic product (GDP) growth in this period fell to the lowest level since the last quarter of 2011. The government has set a GDP growth...

Sports

Play and remember Phillip Hughes

Play and remember Phillip Hughes

Hughes  the  12th  man 11. Darryn Randall (South Africa, 32) – South Africa, 2013 Randall was hit on the side of the head when attempting a pull shot. The batsman collapsed and was immediately rushed to hospital, but could not be revived. 10. Zulfiqar Bhatti (Pakistan, 22) – Pakistan, 2013 Bhatti was struck in the chest by...

Falsifying security!

Falsifying security!

Helmets have given a false sense of security to batsmen, who no longer have the necessary technique to deal with fast bowling, according to former England opener Geoff Boycott. The death of Australian Phillip Hughes on Thursday after being struck on the head by a short-pitched delivery has fuelled debate about safety in cricket. "Most...

'No no no ...'

Players and politicians expressed shock and grounds fell silent on Thursday as the cricket world plunged into mourning after the death of Australian batsman Phillip Hughes. Ripples from the demise of Hughes, two days after he was knocked unconscious by a cricket ball, quickly spread across the planet as the sport reeled from a rare death in competition. At the Adelaide Oval, home ground of Hughes's South Australia team, the heart-wrenching message "Vale Phillip Hughes 1988-2014" was posted on an otherwise...

'I have lost a good friend'

“The ball must have gone through the gap here,” a concerned-looking Mushfiqur Rahim told Shakib Al Hasan while the duo were analysing one of their helmets, just before they began training at Mirpur yesterday. Shakib then took the two helmets and compared them for a minute, before keeping the one he liked for his batting session. It was a scenario that is generally not seen during training; these were after all, the same helmets that they have been batting with...

Basundhara Cement Test Series & ODI Series

Fourth ODI shrouded by gloom

“It's really sad. I am not in the mood to say anything,” was the response from Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Bin Mortaza, when he was asked to say something regarding today's fourth ODI against Zimbabwe. The world cricket fraternity has been mourning the untimely demise of Australia batsman Phil Hughes and there was no exception here. Both Bangladesh and Zimbabwe players will observe a minute's silence prior to the start of the day-night game and will wear black armbands to show...

Sk Jamal storm into semis

Sk Jamal storm into semis

An impressive Sheikh Jamal DC stormed into the semifinals of the King's Cup with a thrilling 5-3 win over Kolkata giants Mohun Bagan AC in the last match of Group A at the Changlimithang Stadium in Thimphu, Bhutan yesterday. Nigerian hitman Emeka Darlington and Gambian Landing Darboe struck a brace each, while Haitian Wedson...

Siddikur's plight goes on

Siddikur Rahman maintained his poor performance at the Resorts World Manila Masters' last round when the Bangladesh premier golfer played two-over-par 74 in the first round of the King's Cup at the Singha Park Khon Kaen Golf Club in Thailand yesterday. Having finished 52nd in the Manila Masters following eight bogeys in the last round, the two-time Asian Tour winner started the day with a bogey on the first hole and again on the 16th hole to finish joint 111th...

Brandao jailed for a month

Bastia's Brazilian striker Brandao was on Thursday jailed for a month and fined 20,000 euros ($25,000) for headbutting Paris Saint-Germain's Thiago Motta. The President of the Paris court, however, implied the 34-year-old could benefit from a reduced sentencing and not a prison stay. French prosecutors had requested an eight-month suspended term and 15,000 euros fine, against Brandao who waited for and headbutted Motta after a Ligue 1 game on August 16.

Pele put under 'special care'

Brazil great Pele, 74, was on Thursday taken into a "special care" unit in a Sao Paulo hospital after his health worsened, three days after being admitted with a urinary infection, the hospital confirmed. "Edson Arantes do Nascimento [Pele] remains in hospital. To receive the best care he was transferred in order to be monitored in a special care unit," read a statement released by the Albert Einstein hospital in Sao Paulo. Pele underwent surgery for kidney stones on November 13...

'Changed attitudes behind success'

The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) has decided not to send the team to Dubai to play matches, as part of their preparations for the World Cup next year, as they thought that it would be too hectic for the players. BCB president Nazmul Hassan Papon informed reporters about the Dubai trip during an official press conference at his business office at the Beximco Pharmaceuticals Ltd. Operational Headquarters yesterday. During the marathon briefing the BCB boss talked about Mashrafe Bin Mortaza's bright...

UEFA Champions League

Atletico, Arsenal thru'

Atletico, Arsenal thru'

Croatia striker Mario Mandzukic blasted a hattrick as last year's beaten finalists Atletico Madrid booked their place in the knock-out rounds of the Champions League with a 4-0 win over Olympiakos on Wednesday. Juventus are in pole position to join the Spanish champions in qualifying from Group A after goals from Spaniard Fernando Llorente and Argentina's Carlos Tevez gave the Old Lady of Turin a 2-0 win at Malmo, who are eliminated. Olympiakos can still qualify in second place but must beat Malmo at home in two weeks time and hope Juve lose to Atletico in Italy. Raul Garcia opened the scoring for Atletico before Mandzukic took over but the Spaniards still...

Kangaroos, Black Cats in final

The Kangaroos and Black Cats moved into the final of the Third Kalabagan Cricket Academy Twenty20 Tournament, beating their respective semifinal opponents at the Kalabagan Ground on Wednesday. The Kangaroos (125/7) beat Lions by 50 runs in the first semifinal, thanks to a five- wicket haul from Kalabagan spinner Shahriar and 32 runs from their top-order batsman Imam. In the second semifinal, Black Cats (98/4) beat Tigers by six wickets as Black Cats' Sagar put in an all-round effort, contributing...

Legends succumb to first defeat

Legends of Rupganj suffered their first defeat in the Dhaka Premier League yesterday as they went down to Brothers Union by five wickets at the BKSP yesterday. Batting first, Rupganj were bowled out for 192 in 49.1 overs. In reply, Brothers reached their target with 2.3 overs remaining. Mosharraf Hossain's performance, which saw him score 80 runs and scalp two wickets, was the highlight of the game. Meanwhile, Prime Bank Cricket Club made the most of Rupganj's fall and beat...

20 goals after calf was born!

In the French amateur leagues, Sunday League side Marly-Gomont managed to lose 20-0 to opponents Tupigny. However, it has since emerged that there were several mitigating factors for the embarrassing scoreline. According to a French regional news site, Marly-Gomont lost their goalkeeper after just 25 minutes of the game when he received a phone call to inform him that one of his cows had gone into labour. The goalkeeper, a farmer by day, had to be subbed off so he could return...

Editorial

Editorial

Modi's assurances on LBA, Teesta water deal

THE talks between Bangladesh prime minister Sheikh Hasina and her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the 18th Saarc summit in Kathmandu, have ended on a positive note. Indian premier has  reassured  Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina that  two longstanding bilateral issues between next-door neighbours, Teesta water sharing deal and Land Boundary Agreement (LBA), would be resolved sooner rather than later. The good news is, unlike in the past, the LBA bill this time has not met...

Editorial

Probe committee offers nothing

THE nationwide electricity shutdown on November 1 and the failure to find the reasons thereof by the committee are not only unexpected but downright disheartening. We have all been informed how due to a combined effect of fall in voltage and system frequency caused a chain reaction that shutdown plants originating from Bheramara. Yet the probe committee that published its final report has failed to trace the cause of this low voltage. Indeed the report has skirted the issue...

Op-ed

Editorial

Modi's assurances on LBA, Teesta water deal

THE talks between Bangladesh prime minister Sheikh Hasina and her Indian counterpart Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the 18th Saarc summit in Kathmandu, have ended on a positive note. Indian premier has  reassured  Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina that  two longstanding bilateral issues between next-door neighbours, Teesta water sharing deal and Land Boundary Agreement (LBA), would be resolved sooner rather than later. The good news is, unlike in the past, the LBA bill this time has not met...

Editorial

Probe committee offers nothing

THE nationwide electricity shutdown on November 1 and the failure to find the reasons thereof by the committee are not only unexpected but downright disheartening. We have all been informed how due to a combined effect of fall in voltage and system frequency caused a chain reaction that shutdown plants originating from Bheramara. Yet the probe committee that published its final report has failed to trace the cause of this low voltage. Indeed the report has skirted the issue...

CROSS TALK

Rumours are like ripples in a cornfield

THERE are more rumours reverberating through this land of ours than there are stars in the sky. Every crime is complicated, every corruption is convoluted and every crisis is circuitous. And rumours are leading to speculations as abidingly as faith leads to worship. A Jewish proverb says that we shouldn't witness with our mouths what we don't see with our eyes. But when it comes to an absorbing speculation that gives this government anywhere between three and six months,...

BETWEEN THE LINES

Indo-US partnership for arms

Indo-US partnership for arms

BY any yardstick, the participation of US President Barrack Obama at the Republic Day parade in January is a recognition of India's growing structure. His phone call to Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was, no doubt, an effort to make amends of sorts. But it does not hide the fact that Washington has...

Fading memories of Mujibnagar Government

IT is sad but true that, nowadays, we hardly hear of or talk about the Provisional Government of Bangladesh, formed on April 10, 1971 and popularly known as the Mujibnagar Government. On the contrary, what we get to hear is when some high government official is caught with a fake freedom fighter's certificate. Why is this apathy towards this government which conducted the War of Independence against Pakistan and led it to victory on December 16, 1971? Shouldn't history be...

PLEASURE IS ALL MINE

Mamata, Hasina, Modi and ...

HOW politics in a country impacts on its relationship with a neighbouring country has been spectacularly brought home lately in the context of India and Bangladesh. Usually, we have heard of ripple effect lapping up the shores of another country if its neighbour goes haywire through a takeover of power by an unconstitutional force. Or when militancy gains over normal political order. Security concerns are likely to arise in the neighbourhood. But that in peacetime, changing political dynamics in a...

BOTTOM LINE

India-Pakistan tension threatens the success of Saarc Summit

THE theme of the 18th Kathmandu Summit was “Deeper Integration for Peace and Prosperity.” It is expected that the leaders will attach importance to how to implement the theme for peace and progress of almost 1.3 billion people of the Saarc. It was earlier reported that that three agreements -- Saarc motor vehicles agreement, Saarc regional railway agreement and Saarc energy cooperation agreement -- would be considered and signed to facilitate physical connectivity among the Saarc countries. None of them...

In our country, is the business of business just business?

GROWING up in an entrepreneurial family, I have always wondered about the line between “business as usual,” and business that is socially responsible. With limited repercussions in Bangladesh, it seems that the overwhelming positivity of businesses have, to an extent, been negated by poor environment and labour practices, and a blatant disregard for the good of society. It begs the question, is the business of business just business? On an even more molecular level, what is business? These days, people...

JAY HO

WHY did the chicken cross the road? To prove that it's no chicken but rather, a full blooded Bangladeshi. After all, Bangladesh is perhaps among the very few countries in the world where one has to get special combat training to cross the streets. With a mixed bag of buses, trucks, cars, baby taxis (CNGs), rickshaws, pull carts, push carts, cows (leaving Hansel and Gretel trails), why should pedestrians be left out? And so, we have the jaywalkers' paradise. The jaywalker...

Letter To The Editor

Making a mockery of V-sign

Making a mockery of V-sign

Nowadays the widespread use of the victory sign has become a matter of mockery. Everyone likes to show it no matter what. Maybe the politicians would secure the first place in case a competition of showing this sign would take place. The politicians of our country never hesitate to show the sign 'V'...

Letter To The Editor

Can't Ekushey and Hay Festival go together?

We, the literature loving people, keep waiting for occasions like Hay Festival. With much enthusiasm, this year's Hay Festival was held at the Bangla Academy premises from November 20 to 22. I want to give an idea to the festival organisers: it would be better if this festival is merged with the Ekushey Book Fair. Ekushey Book Fair will not overshadow Hay Festival as both these popular occasions have their uniqueness. Thanks to TDS for being the event partner...

Letter To The Editor

Prospect of a second Dhaka-Sylhet road link

At present the only road that connects Dhaka with Sylhet is N2 via Bhairab Bridge. The printed maps as well as Google Earth show that there is another road, R-370, which connects Mymensingh and Sunamganj. But in reality about 20 km road between Dharampasha and Jamalganj upazila of Sunamganj is yet to be complete. I decided to explore the area myself.  As we reached there it was raining and the village roads inside the haor area became unsuitable for our...

Comments on news report

“BCL activists assault 2 teachers,” published on November 25, 2014 Ahmed Aziz Not surprising at all; surely no measures will be taken by the ruling party against the perpetrators as they depend on them to maintain "democracy" on the street. Redgreen Where are the police and RAB? Had it been Shibir or Chhatra Dal, then by now dozens of arrest would have been done already. **** “PM for prompt, proper action” (Nov. 25, 2014) SM Easy solution; go and get all BNP people whether they have done...

Entertainment

IN LOVING MEMORY

IN LOVING MEMORY

A little over two months have slipped by since legendary Nazrul Sangeet singer Feroza Begum left us for her eternal journey. The Daily Star organised a special musical programme in memory of Feroza Begum on Sunday at the AS Mahmud Hall of The Daily Star Centre. The programme, organised jointly with Eastern Bank...

Pandit Rajan and Sajan Mishra: Masters of the Khyal

Pandit Rajan and Sajan Mishra: Masters of the Khyal

Two brothers, both accountants in a small shop in India, once gave a musical performance in presence of Satguru Jagjit Singh. The Satguru, realising their musical talent, motivated them to come to the music platform and offered to pay double their wages in exchange for them to put in more time to practice...

'A Raga is like a lifetime of tapashya' -- Pandit Shivkumar Sharma

'A Raga is like a lifetime of tapashya' -- Pandit Shivkumar Sharma

Pandit Shiv Kumar Sharma, one of the most influential artistes of Indian Classical Music of the 20th century, is returning to this year's Bengal Classical Music Festival for the third year running. One of the biggest ambassadors of the festival worldwide, the master of the santoor spoke to The Daily Star last year...

16th Asian Art Biennale Bangladesh begins December 1

16th Asian Art Biennale Bangladesh begins December 1

Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA) will arrange the largest fine art festival in Asia, titled “The 16th Asian Art Biennale Bangladesh 2014”, from December 1. Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith as chief guest will inaugurate the grand art event at the National Theatre Hall of BSA at 11am on the day. Cultural affairs minister...

A connect with readers

A connect with readers

“A novel has the power to connect with people's minds and hearts. This is called interiority. Literature can do what the film or television media are unable to do,” said Bangladeshi British novelist Zia Haider Rahman. He was addressing a programme titled “In the light of what readers think: An encounter with Zia Haider...

Exquisite artworks on display at BSK Art Gallery

Exquisite artworks on display at BSK Art Gallery

For the second consecutive time, Bishwo Shahitto Kendra (BSK) has organised a group art exhibition featuring exquisite works by 40 noted Bangladeshi artists at its art gallery. Artist Mir Mostofa Ali spoke at the exhibition inaugural event presided over by the founding chairman of BSK Professor Abdullah Abu Sayeed on November 14. Artworks by...

RAPID FIRE

Sumaiya Shimu

Sumaiya Shimu

Sumaiya Shimu is a popular name in the Bangladesh TV scene, regularly appearing in TV dramas, serials and tele-films. The wide-smiling actor recently answered a bunch of off-beat questions from The Daily Star. Do you receive anonymous calls? Shimu: Anonymous or not; I normally receive all calls. What do you usually do after returning home from a shoot? Shimu: Just unwind and relax. Do you frequently visit your village home? Shimu: Very rarely. I went there, in Narail, last year after a long hiatus of over a decade. How often do you go to the kitchen market? Shimu: I go there occasionally, but I often visit shopping chains like Meena Bazar and Family Need. Tea of Coffee? Shimu: Tea;...

Rancho was based on me: Vidhu Vinod Chopra

Rancho was based on me: Vidhu Vinod Chopra

Producer of 3 Idiots, Vidhu Vinod Chopra said that the character Rancho (played by Aamir Khan) in the massively successful film, was inspired from his own life. Rancho was an eternally optimistic genius in the film.”The character of Rancho in the movie is based on me. It is inspired from my life,” Chopra...

Radharaman Music Festival begins today

The 4th Radharaman Sangeet Utsab will begin today at the premises of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy (BSA). In association with Radharaman Sangskriti Charcha Kendra, BSA has arranged the programme to be held on November 28 and 29. The festival marks the 99th death anniversary of legendary musician and lyricist Radharaman. During his lifetime, Radharaman wrote and composed over 2,000 songs in the baul tradition and was known in particular for his geets and dhamal songs - compositions to traditional dance forms. The...

City

Chittagong College

Bombs, raw materials seized from Shibir controlled dorms

Bombs, raw materials seized from Shibir controlled dorms

Police recovered six crude bombs, 16 machetes, five kilogrammes of gun powder, a huge amount of bomb making materials and projectiles from two Shibir dominated dormitories at Chittagong College in the city yesterday. On information from Bangladesh Chhatra League that four of its activists of the college unit had been confined to Suhrawardy and...

Rise in Violence against Women

Rights activists, academics blame impunity

Incidents of violence against women are rising in the country as the perpetrators are able to commit the crimes with impunity, claimed women rights activists and academics yesterday. They said existing laws protecting women's rights are not implemented properly by the authorities. They made the remarks at a discussion on “Domestic Violence: Not Personal Rather Political” organised by Bangladesh Mahila Parishad and the Department of Women and Gender Studies of Dhaka University on the campus. The discussion was part of a two...

Admission to Govt High Schools

Customary jitters rattle ambitious parents

Nerves are jittery while most are breaking into a cold sweat with the advent of the admission season as ambitious parents begin preparing their offspring, hoping to get them enrolled at renowned state-run high schools, some of which also offer primary education. For the first time, admission forms will be available online, where it can also be submitted, from December 2 to 12 with the price increased to Tk 150, a hike of Tk 50. Of the country's 325 government high...

People aged 60, above senior citizens

In line with the UN policy, President Abdul Hamid yesterday declared the country's people aged 60 years or above as senior citizens. The president was addressing a programme organised by Social Welfare Ministry at the city's Osmani Memorial Auditorium. On November 17, 2013, the cabinet approved the National Policy on Older Persons recognising the elderly people as senior citizens. “We've to keep in mind that a nation can move forward with the joint efforts of young and old people. Here, the young...

Rights of Marginalised Groups

Proper implementation of laws needed

Proper implementation of laws needed

Proper implementation of laws and policies passed to protect the rights of marginalised groups, including women, children, and religious and ethnic minorities, is necessary to ensure dignified life of citizens, said speakers at a discussion yesterday. The roundtable titled “Surokkhito Manobadhikar Somriddho Jibon” was organised by National Human Rights Commission at The Daily Star...

CMC Student Union Poll

BCL panel wins uncontested amid boycott by others

The panel of Bangladesh Chhatra League yesterday won all 20 posts in the uncontested election to Chittagong Medical College Central Students' Union. No other student body took part in the vote, said Prof Maswood Ahmed, the election commissioner. Mahidur Rahman, a fifth-year student, was elected vice president and Nabid Anjum Tanvir, a fourth-year student, general secretary. Nurul Islam, president of Islami Chhatra Shibir at CMC, said there was “no atmosphere” for holding a “free” and “fair” election. Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal was ousted from...

Try 'killer' Ershad

Selina Akhter, mother of Dr Shamsul Alam Khan Milon who was gunned down in 1990 by the armed cadres widely believed to be of the then military dictator HM Ershad, at a commemoration yesterday termed the latter a “killer” and demanded that he be tried.  “The principles that Dr Milon sacrificed his life for have not yet been achieved. General Ershad is still being awarded and used by the government. Milon's soul will not forgive those who reach a compromise...

Indictment hearing against 51 Destiny men Jan 15

A Dhaka court yesterday fixed January 15 for hearing on charge framing against Managing Director of Destiny Group Rafiqul Amin, President Lt Gen (retd) Harun-Ar-Rashid and 49 others in two money laundering cases involving around Tk 4,200 crore. On October 13, the government published a gazette asking 46 out of 51 of the company's staff, including Rafiqul's wife Farah Diba, to appear before the court. Earlier, police failed to arrest any of the 46 fugitive staff even though the court asked...

Question Paper Leak

Govt may shut down Facebook during exams

In the wake of widespread allegations of question paper leaks in public examinations, the government has announced taking stronger measures to tackle the issue, including making Facebook inaccessible during the tests, if necessary. Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid made the announcement at an inter-ministerial meeting with law enforcers regarding the Secondary School Certificate (SSC) exams of 2015.      “Check the necessary laws; if needed, Facebook will be made inaccessible,” he told the officials present at the meeting. The ministry yesterday formed a...

Rab creates database of convicted, detained

To tackle crimes using technology, Rapid Action Battalion has developed a computerised database of 22,000 convicted criminals and 18,000 detained persons. Using the database under a network, Rab personnel across the country can know about150 types of information of a rearrested person, including name, address, photo, occupation and past crime records and fingerprints, in seconds, said Rab officials. State Minister for Home Asaduzzaman Khan discussed the system at a ceremony at the Rab headquarters in the capital's Uttara yesterday. He said...

Subhan’s War Crimes Trial

His counsel may face contempt charge

The International Crimes Tribunal-2 yesterday came down heavily on a defence counsel of Jamaat-e-Islami leader Abdus Subhan for commenting that the constitution contradicts the law on the issue of justice when it comes to the war crimes trial. Describing the lawyer's comment as "contemptuous", the three-member tribunal warned him of legal action. The counsel Mizanul Islam immediately withdrew his remarks. Placing the closing arguments, Mizanul said, “I have completed my arguments. Before drawing a conclusion, I want to say law tells...

BNP lost confidence in apex court

BNP yesterday termed Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's regime the "worst-ever autocracy" in the world and said the party had lost faith in the Supreme Court because it turned down Khaleda Zia's leave to appeal petitions challenging her "false trials" in graft cases. “We went to the Supreme Court... But the court rejected our pleas. We aren't frustrated; we're aggrieved and our confidence in the apex court has been shattered,” said BNP acting secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir. He was addressing...

Ru Teacher Killing

Cops quizzing four about personal feud

Police yesterday started interrogating four accused people to get further information on the personal feud, which the law enforcers claim led to the murder of Rajshahi University professor AKM Shafiul Islam. “We've gathered some evidence against them. We will see whether they confess or not," said Assistant Commissioner Ifte Khair Alam, spokesperson of Rajshahi Metropolitan Police. "We also need to know how the personal feud of one accused forced others to get involved.” A judicial magistrate's court in Rajshahi yesterday remanded...

UK transit rules changed

Several changes have been made to UK transit rules, including reducing the direct airside transit visa fee to £30 and extending its routine validity to two years, to make the transit simpler and easier, said a British High Commission's press release yesterday. The changes, which will be effective from Monday, also include dropping the en-route requirements for Bangladeshi holders of Australian, Canadian, New Zealand and US visas and thereby enabling them to transit airside via the UK to anywhere in...

News in Brief

Woman stabbed, mugged in capital Staff Correspondent Muggers stabbed a healthcare provider and snatched away her handbag in the capital's Mirpur yesterday afternoon. With injuries to her abdomen, Syed Lovely, 22, a family planning worker, is undergoing treatment at Dhaka Medical College Hospital. Her husband said Lovely was in a rickshaw with the handbag containing Tk 600, a mobile phone, and some important documents. She refused to give the muggers the handbag, he added.   Writ petition filed for declaring Latif's JS seat vacant Staff Correspondent A...

Obituary

Journalist Shafikul Islam Shibli of Gopalpur village in Pabna died due to Kidney disease in the capital on Wednesday. He was 60, and was buried at Arifpur graveyard yesterday. Former vice-president of Pabna Press Club Shafikul was the publisher and editor of Weekly Arshey.

Country

The life of a sadhu

The life of a sadhu

There's little to do when a baby is born with fever – not meaning fever of the ordinary sort but of a spiritual kind. When Santosh Chandra Kumar was born with fever most of a century ago in Manikganj, his parents considered it a miracle. His father ran a rice wholesale business in Aricha. Together with his mother he accepted that his newborn son was blessed. They refused to let him cut his hair. As a young man, Kumar disappeared suddenly from his family home to begin his geographic and spiritual journey. Some twenty years ago it led him to Shahargachhi village in Dinajpur's Ghoraghat. He still lives there, in a tiny...

Youth arrested for rape, taking video

Members of the Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) arrested a youth from Mohananda Bridge area of Rehaichar in the district town on Wednesday evening on charge of raping a college girl, taking video and demanding money by blackmailing her. The arrestee was identified as Mohammad Raju alias Rajon,24, son of Taimur Rahman of Nayalavanga village under Shibganj upazila in the district. Sources said, being refused several times, Raju abducted a girl of Chapainawabganj Women's College from Sonar More area, when she was...

Protest Against Visit by Asia Energy CEO

Roadblock in Phulbari

Roadblock in Phulbari

People of Phulbari yesterday blocked Dinajpur-Dhaka Highway in Nimtola area under Phulbari municipality, protesting the visit of Gary Lye, chief executive officer (CEO) of Asia Energy Corporation (Bangladesh), to its local office on Wednesday. They blocked the highway as part of the daylong road blockade programme announced by the local unit of National Committee...

Ten-Point Demand

Students lock Bogra IHT building, block road

Over two hundred students of Institute of Health Technology (IHT) here yesterday locked their administrative building in the town to press home their 10-point demand. The demands include, establishing a separate Bangladesh Diploma Medical Board, holding examinations in due time, reducing session-fees and appointment of experienced teachers. The agitated students under the banner of Chhatra Sangram Parishad blocked the Sherpur-Bogra road for nearly an hour by burning tyres and chanting slogans in favour of their demands. Later, they removed the barricades after...

Seven hurt in Laxmipur gunfight

At least seven people, including four policemen, were injured in a gunfight between police and a gang of criminals at Uttar Joypur in Sadar upazila early yesterday. Superintendent of police of Laxmipur Shah Mizan Safiur Rahman said a team of police launched a drive in Uttar Joypur area early in the morning to arrest fugitive accused and listed criminal Jewel. Sensing the presence of the police team, Jewel and his associates opened fire on them, prompting the law enforcers to fire...

Three get life for murder

Additional District and Session Judge Abdul Hamid yesterday sentenced three people to life term imprisonment and fined Tk 50 thousands each, in default, to suffer 5 years more imprisonment for killing a rickshaw-puller. The court also acquitted two others. The lifers are Abdur Rashid, 42, Alhaz Uddin, 37, and Hormuz Ali, 37, of village Adhpur under Sadar upazila. The case in brief is that, on October 9 night in 2005 the convicted people killed Abul Kalam, 42, of the same village...

Two AL leaders shot dead in Jessore, Pabna

Two Awami League leaders were shot dead by unidentified gangs in Jessore town and Pabna Sadar upazila on Wednesday night. The dead are Khairul Kazi, 32, joint secretary of the AL unit, comprising Ward Nos 7, 8 and 9 under Dogasi union of Pabna Sadar upazila, and Mahfuzur Rahman Khokan, 39, office secretary of AL ward No-1 unit under Fatepur union of Jessore Sadar upazila. Our Pabna correspondent reported that Khairul Kazi came under attack by a gang near Char Koshakhali...

Nothing can stop Hyder's tree planting 'mission'

Nothing can stop Hyder's tree planting 'mission'

Miscreants at dead of night on November 16 felled 250 trees voluntarily planted by an elderly man on the embankment of an unused irrigation canal at Bakdokra village in Saidpur upazila. The elderly local had previously planted 2,000 trees on the embankment at his own cost and was shocked at the act, which allegedly...

OC sued for assaulting lawyer

A case was filed yesterday against the officer in-charge (OC) of Sadar Model Police Station, Jasimuddin, on charge of physically assaulting a lawyer at the police station on Wednesday. Chapainawabganj Bar Association General Secretary Advocate Ali Awal Baul filed the case with the Chief Judicial Magistrate's Court in the afternoon. After the hearing, Bulbul Hossain, Judge of the court ordered a judicial inquiry into the complaint and fixed 28 January, 2015 for the next hearing. Earlier in the morning, members of the...

Cheating in Admission Test

Hajee Danesh university expels 3 BCL leaders

The authorities of Hajee Danesh Science and Technology University (HSTU) have permanently expelled three BCL leaders from the university for cheating in the admission test, using a hi-tech device on November 4. The disciplinary committee took the decision yesterday on the basis of the report submitted by the probe committee on Tuesday. The expellees are Arun Kanti Roy, a PhD student and general secretary of the HSTU unit of BCL, SM Zahid Hasan, a fourth year student of business studies and...

Snaps and Snippets

Over 100 fishermen kidnapped Unb, Khulna Robbers have kidnapped more than 100 fishermen and looted 10 trawlers with fish and other valuables worth about Tk 3 crore from Fairway buoy in the Bay adjacent to Dublar Char in the Sundarbans. Local fishermen and general secretary of Dubla Fishermen Group Abul Hossain yesterday said, gang members of 'Raja Bahini', 'Farhad Bahini' and 'Al-Amin Bahini' committed robberies in the Bay from Tuesday evening to early Wednesday. They looted fish and other valuables from...

World

Militants attack army in Kashmir

Militants attack army in Kashmir

Militants attacked an army patrol in Indian Kashmir yesterday, leaving three soldiers and three civilians dead as fighting continued near the border with rival Pakistan, security officials said. The group of heavily armed militants attacked the army column near a base in the town of Arnia in Indian Kashmir, about four kilometres from the...

Constitutional Reform

Suu Kyi woos military MPs ahead of talks

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi has invited military lawmakers to dinner in a bid to build ties ahead of a proposed summit on changing the constitution, which bars her from the presidency, a senior member of her party said yesterday. On Tuesday, parliament unanimously endorsed talks among Suu Kyi, President Thein Sein, the speakers of the two houses of parliament, military chief Gen Min Aung Hlaing, and a member of a party representing an ethnic minority. Yesterday evening, Suu...

Kabul blast hits embassy vehicle

Kabul blast hits embassy vehicle

A suicide bomber rammed his explosives-packed car into a British embassy vehicle in Kabul yesterday, killing one Briton and five Afghans in the latest attack to highlight fragile security as Nato troops withdraw. A British security contractor and an Afghan employee of the embassy died in the blast, which hit their vehicle on a...

Modi accused of breaching diplomatic norms in Nepal

Modi accused of breaching diplomatic norms in Nepal

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'suggestion' to Nepal's political parties on how to write the new Constitution has been criticised by Nepal's leading newspapers and politicians. Yesterday, the country's top Nepali dailies said Modi breached diplomatic norms and displayed the “old Indian habit of interfering in Nepal's internal matters”. During his remarks at the inauguration and handover ceremony of Trauma Centre for Bir Hospital in Kathmandu on Tuesday, Modi, while pointing out the perils of delay in writing the new Constitution, urged political parties to write the statute by consensus. “Indian PM breached diplomatic Lakshman rekha (norms),” the Kantipur wrote in its editorial. “He also has not taken into account provis ......

Nine injured in south China knife attack

Nine people were rushed to the hospital after a man stabbed them at a grocery store in south China yesterday, state media reported, the latest in a series of knifings that has unnerved the country. A man in his 20s attacked several people at the entrance to a supermarket in Nanning, the capital of China's Guangxi region, the official Xinhua news agency said. The China News Service said the assailant, surnamed Zhou, carried out the attack because of a personal dispute...

Hope rises for green revolution

Hope rises for green revolution

A recently discovered form of carbon graphite – the material in pencil lead – has turned out to have a completely unexpected property which could revolutionise the development of green energy and electric cars. Researchers have discovered that graphene allows positively charged hydrogen atoms or protons to pass through it despite being completely impermeable...

Hanged girls took their own lives

Two girls found hanging earlier this year in northern India committed suicide and were not gang-raped and murdered as previously thought, federal investigators said yesterday. The cousins, aged 12 and 14, were found hanging from a tree in an impoverished village in Uttar Pradesh state in May, reigniting international outrage over crimes against women in India. The girls' families said they were raped and lynched by men from a higher caste after going into the fields at night to relieve themselves...

Ebola vaccine promising

The first human trial of an experimental vaccine against Ebola suggests that it is safe and may help the immune system to combat the virus. Twenty volunteers were immunised in the United States. Scientists at the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) described the results as "promising". The research is published in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM). None of those immunised suffered major side-effects and all produced antibodies. Dr Anthony Fauci of the NIH told the BBC: "On safety and...

No return to democracy until 2016: Thai govt

No return to democracy until 2016: Thai govt

A Thai general election planned for next year will be delayed until 2016, a deputy prime minister said yesterday, pushing back the promised return to democracy. The prime minister, Prayuth Chan-ocha, who led a military coup in May, had previously hinted at a delay to polls promised for late 2015. The deputy prime minister, Prawit...

European MPs back break-up of Google

The European Parliament voted overwhelmingly for the break-up of Google yesterday in a largely symbolic vote that nevertheless cast another blow in the four-year standoff between Brussels and the US Internet giant. In a direct challenge to Google, MEPs assembled in Strasbourg approved a resolution calling on the EU to consider ordering search engines to separate their commercial services from their businesses. While Google is not directly mentioned in the proposal, the California-based search engine is clearly the target. The resolution...

Iraqi forces battle ISIS in Ramadi

Iraqi security forces have held off a jihadist assault on a government headquarters in troubled Anbar province, deploying reinforcements in the key battleground against the Islamic State group, officers said yesterday. Pro-government troops, backed by tribesmen, managed to defend the complex in Ramadi, which lies 100 kilometres west of the capital and is one of the last major urban areas in Anbar under Baghdad's control. The attack by ISIS fighters, as well as clashes in the northern province of Kirkuk, follow...

West struggles with Russia's 'ambiguous warfare' tactics

When Russians crossed the border to fight with rebels in eastern Ukraine earlier this year, Moscow said the soldiers had not been deployed but had gone on their own vacation time. When Estonia was the victim of a cyber attack in 2007 and blamed Moscow, the Kremlin responded that it could not always control patriotic Russian hackers. Western strategists who built their defenses to counter a massive invasion, nuclear missiles or terrorism are still trying to work out how to cope...

Valerie Amos to step down

Valerie Amos to step down

The top UN official for humanitarian aid, Valerie Amos, who oversaw international relief efforts in Syria and other trouble spots, announced Wednesday she is stepping down. Amos had been in the key post for more than four years, overseeing major aid operations in Syria as well as in South Sudan, Iraq and the Central...

News in Brief

Spain health minister quits over graft scam Afp, Madrid Spanish Health Minister Ana Mato resigned on Wednesday after being linked to a massive corruption scandal involving an alleged kickback scheme at the heart of the Spanish prime minister's conservative Popular Party. Mato has not been named as an official suspect in the corruption probe, but a judge said earlier Wednesday that she had "benefited from" holidays, cash payments and other gifts when she was married to Jesus Sepulveda, a former Popular...

The Star

Hay Festival Dhaka

Cerebral Celebrations

Cerebral Celebrations

It is not everyday that you get to see such excitement over a poetry reading or discussion of the process of writing. But for those three days of November, Bangla Academy pulsated with activity. It was a scintillating congregation of writers, poets, journalists, musicians, critics, publishers from all over the world and visitors...

Hay Festival Dhaka

The Medium of Knowledge Exchange

The Medium of Knowledge Exchange

Translation is one of the most significant sources of any country's literature and knowledge. Bangladesh has been translating global literature into Bengali from long since. One of the pioneers of literary translation is Syed Shamsul Haque who has translated Shakespeare and Henrik Ibsen. But translation of Bengali literature into English and other languages...

Hay Festival Dhaka

AMUSINGLY SCIENTIFIC

AMUSINGLY SCIENTIFIC

The most stereotypical image of a scientist in films is of a person with a big head doing bizarre experiments in his mysterious, underground laboratory. However, it is the very mystery associated with science that fascinates the young mind. When the three celebrated figures of science and science fiction Muhammed Zafar Iqbal, Lucy...

Hay Festival Dhaka

“I'm Pro-capitalist”

“I'm Pro-capitalist”

Why did you choose to be a writer? I did lots of the things, a corporate job, thought to be an academic before I started writing. But I find in the end that writing is the only way that I can process the world. I think this is what I was born to do....

Hay Festival Dhaka

In Silent Dignity

In Silent Dignity

On the first day of the festival, at 2 pm, a medium sized crowd consisting of academics and litterateurs gather at the historic Bottola or under the banyan tree at the Bangla Academy. What could be a more befitting place to remember Razia Khan? After all, she called her first novel, which she wrote at 18, Bot tolar Upannayash—literally, the story of the Banyan tree. The novel caused a stir when it was published in 1958. By the time poet Kaiser Haq is reciting a poem from Razia Khan: Collected Poems, the crowd has grown bigger. Do they understand poetry? Do they know English? Doesn't seem to matter. “Genuine poetry...

Hay Festival Dhaka

THE SAGA OF A BRAVE NATION

THE SAGA OF A BRAVE NATION

The tragic atrocities committed during the liberation war of Bangladesh in 1971 are one of the less heard and less recognized histories of the world. The fact is there are few accounts in English which have portrayed the war crimes and the sufferings of common people during and after the war. Renowned Indian...

Hay Festival Dhaka

ONCE UPON A TIME

ONCE UPON A TIME

Human beings recorded personal history through dialogue long before there were any books. The oral tradition continues to this day. Till now, storytelling has played a momentous role in contemporary photography. In the beginning, photographers in Bangladesh used to present eye soothing, beautiful photographs. But the trend has changed,leadingto a groth in the...

Hay Festival Dhaka

Rewriting the Domestic

Rewriting the Domestic

Tahmima Anam called it a “feast of sorts.” And a feast it was! With panellists like Muneeza Shamsie, Manju Kapur and Nilanjana Roy, and chaired by Anam herself, the session titled 'Women as Writers' was a treat for every avid reader – man and woman. The three panellists and the moderator had some things...

Hay Festival Dhaka

‘The Collaborator’

‘The Collaborator’

Born and raised in Kashmir, Mirza Waheed is a former BBC journalist who now lives in London. His debut novel, The Collaborator, was shortlisted for the Guardian Book Award and the Shakti Bhat Prize. How was Kashmir like when you were a young boy? During the nineties, the army used to conduct 'operations' every day. In the morning there would be an announcement from the local mosque ordering all men to gather in a field. A masked informer sat in a military vehicle and these men had to parade in front of it. All it took was a nod from the informer and you were taken away. A lot of young...

Hay Festival Dhaka

IN THE LIGHT OF WHAT HE KNOWS

IN THE LIGHT OF WHAT HE KNOWS

You studied advanced mathematics, finance and law. Why did you turn to fiction? I have been writing since I was a child. So I was always a writer. Until now it wasn't important to publish anything. For me the reward of writing is the reward of the process, not the product. So nothing substantially...

Hay Festival Dhaka

FUN SCIENCE

FUN SCIENCE

Lucy Hawking is the creator of the George's Series, a series of adventure stories to explain science to the young readers in an entertaining way. She has been working with her father Stephen Hawking and other renowned scientists to make science entertaining for young children. In this year's Hay Festival, Dhaka she talked...

Hay Festival Dhaka

ASSERTING A SOUTH ASIAN IDENTITY

ASSERTING A SOUTH ASIAN IDENTITY

It is surprising to know that Aamer Hussein, author of several collections of short stories and a novel, a meticulous translator of Urdu poetry and prose, a scholar and teacher, was actually a late bloomer. Although dabbling in poetry and writing since childhood Aamer seriously started writing when he was 29. Even then...

Hay Festival Dhaka

A Powerful Voice

A Powerful Voice

Iranian-born British poet Mimi Khalvati first met her poetry in a similar way to how she was introduced to her extended family. Both meetings came late. Each was a door to new expression, understanding and identity. She published her first poetry collection at age 47, within a few short years of having written her...

Hay Festival Dhaka

MENDING THE PAST

MENDING THE PAST

Laksmi Pamuntjak is an Indonesian novelist, poet and food writer. Her 2012 novel Amba, a modern take on the story of Bhisma and Amba from The Mahabharata, set against the backdrop of the Indonesian mass killings of 1965, has become a national bestseller. Why did you pick Bhisma and Amba for the two main characters of your novel? When the idea for the novel came about in 2004, I was finding a lot of solace in poetry and mythology. I was renewing my lifelong fascination with Iliad and the Mahabharata. I was especially drawn by lesser known characters. Bhisma is a well known figure in the Indonesian rendition of the Mahabharata...

Hay Festival Dhaka

A Promising Author

A Promising Author

Javed Jahangir is a promising Bangladeshi author. His works have been published in the Daily Star, Bengal Lights Journal, Smokelong Quarterly and many other literary blogs and journals.He is a founding member of beyondthemargins.com, a website of daily literary essays. He was on the 2011 panel of judges for the RISCA (Rhode Island State Council Arts) Fiction Fellowship award. He has contributed to, and been editor-in-chief of The Grub Street Writers' 10 year Anthology. His novel 'Ghost Alley' is launched in this year's Hay Festival, Dhaka by Bengal Foundation Publishers. This emerging writer talks to the Star about his thoughts, works and future plan. What actually inspired you to write...

Hay Festival Dhaka

Art and Survival The Journey of Kosal Khiev

Art and Survival The Journey of Kosal Khiev

A jammed revolver during a Californian turf war is the makings of a tragedy. But for Kosal Khiev it is nothing short of a divine intervention. At the time, the young Cambodian was 16 years old facing a 16 year sentence. Khiev holds no apparent grudge against the system that tried a teenager...

Impressions

Some Charms of Kolkata

Some Charms of Kolkata

Every time I visit Kolkata, the city appears with a new look and meaning to me. In a way, I rediscover it. The novelties are just not about the changing landscape, tall buildings and expansive, glamorous billboards but about life-styles. The very arrival at the state-of-the-art Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport  (a  regional...

Book Review

A Sleeping Bag for Two

A Sleeping Bag for Two

A certain sense of apprehension prevailed in the air when Oxford Majlis decided to invite Rabindranath Tagore immediately after he had won the Nobel in 1913. The Majlis, which took over the Oxford Indian Club a year ago, earned some notoriety for, as (Hasan) Shahid Suhrawardy writes,"…it was a loved game of ours to get hold of a well-known Indian political leader, cajole and flatter him, lavish hospitality upon him, invite him to the Majlis meeting and then skin him alive, proving him that he was a worthless worm, who, in spite of his nationalistic pretensions, had done nothing else all his life but lick the boots of British...

Write to Mita

Write to Mita

Dear Mita, I am a 15-year-old girl studying in class ten. I had a male friend, a very funny, caring and friendly person. We were very good friends since class 7. When we were in class 9, he started liking one of my close friends and even asked her out on a date. However, she rejected him. On the other hand, another close friend of mine had a crush on him. This led to a lot of confusion and misunderstandings between the three, and they stopped talking to each other. The boy spoke to me and told me that I should not take sides and continue to be friends with...

Quirky Science

Quirky Science

Information in this column has been collected from various sources Social anxiety? Well, you may already be someone's best friend In matters of friendship, people with social anxiety disorder face many problems. They often find it difficult to make friends. They also tend to assume that the friendships they do have are not of the...

Remembrance

A Poet of the Fall

A Poet of the Fall

Begum Sufia Kamal (20 June 1911 – 20 November 1999) was an acclaimed Bangladeshi poet, and important figure in the Bengali nationalist movement of the 1950s and 60s. An important leader of the civil society movement of Bangladesh, Kamal is also hailed as an exemplary poet, a committed activist and feminist. We remember...

Postscript

The Bitter Sweet Truth

The Bitter Sweet Truth

The world is running out of chocolate says The Independent (UK). This is not good for the millions of chocoholics all over this planet salivating at the very word: chocolate. Apparently we Asians are to blame. Asians are now richer it seems and as a result have acquired the taste of chocolate and demanding it more and more. Cocoa crops are not growing at par with this extra demand; hence the acute shortage looming over our heads say chocolate making experts such as the Switzerland-based Barry Callebaut Group. Even Mars Inc is concerned - its president giving a gloom and doom scenario where there maybe a one million tonne...

Perspective

LIVING IN A CULTURE OF FEAR

LIVING IN A CULTURE OF FEAR

As a news junkie, I read a lot of news stories and feature articles everyday online. But recently there was one particular news that got me all worked up.  It happened last month in the heart of the capital. The incident has been widely publicized and by now, it is old news. A...

Chintito

Abject Failure of State PR

Abject Failure of State PR

I refer to a front-page commentary “Propaganda and the war crimes trial” by our editor Mahfuz Anam  (7 Nov 2014); I quote“…we have never made any effective effort to counter the propaganda of the Jamaat and their supporters and have never challenged their narrative in an organised, consistent and sustained manner”.  Anam indirectly...

MAILBOX

MAILBOX

Wasfia's Everest All Bangladeshis are proud of Wasfia's achievement. She proves that if you have a dream and if you work hard to pursue that dream, you will find a way to realise it. We all can draw strength from her character which is made of determination, humility and patriotism. We salute Wasfia for...

MAD GENIUS

PYOTR ILYICH TCHAIKOVSKY

PYOTR ILYICH TCHAIKOVSKY

7 May 1840 – 6 November 1893 Russain musician Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky was famous for Russian Orthodox Divine Liturgy and theatrical music in the classical repertoire. His works included symphonies, concertos, operas, ballets and chamber music. Emperor Alexander III honored the maestro in 1884, and awarded him a lifetime pension in the late 1880s. "Inspiration is a guest that does not willingly visit the lazy. To regret the past, to hope in the future, and never to be satisfied with the present: that is what I spend my whole life doing. Music is indeed the most beautiful of all Heaven's...

SNAPSHOT

The Beautiful Orange

The Beautiful Orange

“People are just as wonderful as sunsets if you let them be. When I look at a sunset, I don't find myself saying, "Soften the orange a bit on the right hand corner." I don't try to control a sunset. I watch with awe as it unfolds.” ― Carl R. Rogers

Voicebox

"If Chhatra League does anything (wrong), the media covers it extensively as if newspapers can't run without sensational news. However, the good deeds of Chhatra League do not hit the headlines." SAJEEB WAZED JOY Prime Minister's son and her Information and Communication Technology (ICT) adviser Said on last Saturday at a programme that the positive activities of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) do not receive media coverage. "If we are hit, we will retaliate. Let them send me to jail, I will see how...

1 MINUTE PLEASE!

1 MINUTE PLEASE!

One minute he is serving his patients with a stethoscope worn around his neck, the next minute he is running across the city capturing every odd detail of the streets. A doctor by profession and a photographer by heart, Ata Mohammad Adnan a young photographer has already bagged a number of significant awards. His unique way of seeing things has made him standout in the world of photography, his photos have travelled and competed in several exhibitions around the world and many of his works have been published in BBC, CNN, Daily Mail UK, Huffington Post and many more international journals. This week the Star talks to this young...

HOME AND ABROAD

HOME AND ABROAD

The End of a River Jhenidah. Lack of government initiatives to dredge the Kapotakkho river, flowing through Jhenidah's Moheshpur upazila, has shrunk it to the size of a mere canal, reducing the availability of fish, in turn affecting the livelihoods of communities along its banks. Rotten Onions Pabna. The wholesale market at Sujanagar in Pabna...

Cartoon

Babu

Babu

 

Bytes

Tech Flash

Digital World 2015 Expo on the way

Digital World 2015 Expo on the way

ICT division recently announced the date for the ‘Digital World Expo’ in BCC Bhaban at Agargaon. The upcoming event will be held next February 09-12, 2015. For those of you who don’t know: Digital World is the largest digital expo of Bangladesh. ICT divisions will be arranging this event in cooperation of Bangladesh...

Next Step

A guide to Blogsville

A guide to Blogsville

Blogs are not only the tools for expressing personal opinions, creativity and heritage – a blog is also a great way to advertise merchandise or service. The loyalty of the followers depends on the content and popularity of the posts. In Bangladesh, e-commerce has flourished through online ads and pages and we have...

Innovation Xtreme makes its mark on the startup scene

Innovation Xtreme makes its mark on the startup scene

Let me paint you a picture from the recent past, at best ten years back. A young graduate after finishing his or her studies would aspire to work for a local corporation or a MNC. Why? Because it gave him or her stability, a steady paycheck at the end of the month, and...

ABCs of startups with Kalsoom Lakhani

ABCs of startups with Kalsoom Lakhani

Kalsoom Lakhani is the Founder/CEO of Invest2Innovate, or i2i, which supports startups and the broader entrepreneurship ecosystem in developing markets, beginning in Pakistan. She is a Global Ambassador for Sandbox, a global network of innovators under 30, and is a member of the World Economic Forum's Global Shapers. She has trained young entrepreneurs and change-makers in tech forums in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Kiev, Ukraine and Almaty, Kazakhstan. The George Washington University graduate shares with Shahriar Rahman from The Daily Star about how someone should get started with their very first startup.     If someone has a startup, what are the things they need to address first? Whether you are currently running...

“Professional Networking Essentials: Finding Opportunities to Make Connections”

“Professional Networking Essentials: Finding Opportunities to Make Connections”

Overview   In the modern connected business environment, knowing the essentials of professional networking is a major asset and key for success. Networking is all about people and making beneficial connections that will help you build a stable and fulfilling career. Unleashing the power of a network isn't something to be taken lightly. Poor networking...

Letters

Letter To The Editor

Making a mockery of V-sign

Making a mockery of V-sign

Nowadays the widespread use of the victory sign has become a matter of mockery. Everyone likes to show it no matter what. Maybe the politicians would secure the first place in case a competition of showing this sign would take place. The politicians of our country never hesitate to show the sign 'V'...

Letter To The Editor

Can't Ekushey and Hay Festival go together?

We, the literature loving people, keep waiting for occasions like Hay Festival. With much enthusiasm, this year's Hay Festival was held at the Bangla Academy premises from November 20 to 22. I want to give an idea to the festival organisers: it would be better if this festival is merged with the Ekushey Book Fair. Ekushey Book Fair will not overshadow Hay Festival as both these popular occasions have their uniqueness. Thanks to TDS for being the event partner...

Letter To The Editor

Prospect of a second Dhaka-Sylhet road link

At present the only road that connects Dhaka with Sylhet is N2 via Bhairab Bridge. The printed maps as well as Google Earth show that there is another road, R-370, which connects Mymensingh and Sunamganj. But in reality about 20 km road between Dharampasha and Jamalganj upazila of Sunamganj is yet to be complete. I decided to explore the area myself.  As we reached there it was raining and the village roads inside the haor area became unsuitable for our...

Comments on news report

“BCL activists assault 2 teachers,” published on November 25, 2014 Ahmed Aziz Not surprising at all; surely no measures will be taken by the ruling party against the perpetrators as they depend on them to maintain "democracy" on the street. Redgreen Where are the police and RAB? Had it been Shibir or Chhatra Dal, then by now dozens of arrest would have been done already. **** “PM for prompt, proper action” (Nov. 25, 2014) SM Easy solution; go and get all BNP people whether they have done...