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Agrahayan 16, 1420 Muharram 25, 1435 Regd. No. DA 6238 Vol 1 No 246


Keep away the sore throats




China sends jets to counter incursion

Spurs win to ease pressure on Villas-Boas


Three more die as blockade ends

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Day of drama ends in another blockade

Death toll in the opposition’s 71-hour transport strike stands at 21 bus on fire near Matsya Bhaban in the who was arrested on the first day of the rickshaws and auto-rickshaws domin Kailash Sarkar n Mohammad Al-Masum Molla shutdown and freed the following day nated the city streets. capital on Thursday evening. Three more arson victims died yesterday, raising the death toll in the opposition-sponsored 71-hour transport blockade to at least 21. The rail-road-waterways programme also left several hundred others injured. Sweater factory worker Md Robin, 25, died at the Burn and Plastic Surgery Unit of Dhaka Medical College Hospital around 3:40pm yesterday, about 21 hours after miscreants set a running

Robin followed his cousin Nahid Molla, who died around 10:30pm on Thursday in the fire. In Chakoria of Cox’s Bazar, a 42-year-old man was shot dead around 4:00pm yesterday in the municipality area in clashes between BNP-Jammat men and police following the death of Abdul Halim, who was an organising secretary of the Upazila unit Jubo Dal. BNP and Jammat claimed Halim -

on bail - died in the early hours of yesterday because of police torture. Meanwhile, a significant number of patients are still fighting for their lives at hospitals. During the blockade, hundreds of vehicles were torched railway tracks were uprooted, causing derailments and communications to be snapped. Dhaka remained almost isolated from other parts of the country while

Several people of the ruling Awami League and its different front organisations were also among the dead. BNP joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi at a briefing yesterday claimed nine of the dead belonged to the 18-party alliance while 3,205 of their party men were injured, and police had filed cases against around 16,005 of their alliance men with 1,200 of them arrested during the shutdown and blockade. l

The BNP-led 18-party opposition combine is enforcing a 72-hour countrywide rail, road and waterway blockade starting today, just 25 hours after its previous spell of 71-hour blockade ended. The opposition’s previous plan was to observe demonstration programmes around the country for today protesting the repression on leaders and activists.

Mohammad Al-Masum Molla


Following a rumour of the deaths of two fellow employees, workers set fire to three buildings of Standard Group garment factory in Konabari industrial area of Gazipur in the early hours of yesterday. It took over 13 hours for fire fighters to tame the flames.


A cloud of black smoke billows from the Standard Garment Factory building in Gazipur’s Shonabari yesterday as a section of the building burns


Government using intel agencies: Khaleda n Mohammad Al-Masum Molla BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia yesterday alleged that the government had created the confrontational situation using law enforcers illegally and “unleashing” intelligence agencies and party cadres on peaceful protest programmes.

Asking the Election Commission to postpone the election schedule of the “lopsided and farcical elections,” the opposition leader urged the people to peacefully continue the ongoing movement against the “hurried” announcement of the polls schedule. In a statement signed by party’s  PAGE 2 COLUMN 1

n Manik Miazee A number of grassroots leaders of the Ershad-led Jatiya Party have alleged that its top brass has awarded nominations to unknown faces in exchange of money. There were many faces who had never attended any party meeting, some of these leaders told the Dhaka Tribune. They said the parliamentary committee of JP accepted monetary payments for awarding nomination to some of these unknown faces, bypassing the dedicated workers.

n Kamran Reza Chowdhury

The Awami League yesterday announced its “primary” list of candidates for each of the 300 constituencies for the upcoming general elections. Some controversial lawmakers were dropped from the party ticket for the 5 January contest, including former communications minister Syed Abul Hossain, for whom the World Bank declined to give the $1.97bn Padma bridge loan. However, some controversial politicians who previously failed to secure the party nomination were given elec-

They accused party chief HM Ershad, Secretary General ABM Ruhul Amin Hawlader and the members of the parliamentary committee of the ill practice. “There are many people who never expected nomination from the party, but were given tickets to contest polls for JP. The grassroots do not know them because they have never attended any party meeting or programme. Surely, they are some financial matters,” said Didarul Alam Didar, organising secretary of JP. The party yesterday finalised its  PAGE 2 COLUMN 6

INSIDE 3 The Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation has finalised the premiums for eight foreign companies for importing refined fuel oil in the first half of the next year.


6 The 16,000 hawkers and street vendors in Chittagong have been facing an acute fall in their sales during the hartals and blockade, according to the general secretary of Chittagong Sammilto Hawkers Federation.


8 Police fired tear gas on Friday at Islamists who demonstrated in Egypt, defying a new

law banning unauthorised protests that also angered activists after the arrest of a blogger.


11 It is safe to assume that few people have visited both the world’s longest beach at Cox’s Bazar and the town of Rio Grande in southern Brazil, home to the beach called Praia do Cassino, which also claims the same title.

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AL names candidates for JS polls

JP grassroots accuse top brass of nomination business



RMG factory torched in Gazipur n Our Correspondent, Gazipur

Ban Ki-moon writes to Hasina, Khaleda n Sheikh Shahriar Zaman and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon has sent separate letters to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and opposition chief Khaleda Zia in the build up to his deputy’s scheduled Dhaka trip next week. Although main opposition BNP’s Vice-Chairman Shamsher Mobin Chowdhury confirmed receiving the letter, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) was yet to do so. A foreign ministry official told the Dhaka Tribune that the premier had received the letter. UN Assistant Secretary General for Political Affairs Oscar Fernandez Taranco is due in Dhaka on December 6 on a five-day trip. In the letter to the prime minister, the UN chief reportedly wrote about the necessity of a free and fair election and holding a dialogue in this regard, the official said. “It is a routine letter in which the secretary general has written to the

At 11:30am yesterday, Ruhul Kabir Rizvi announced the demonstration programme. At first they wanted to hold the programme in the capital’s Suhrawardy Uddyan. Police rejected their application, he claimed. Later, they sought permission to hold a rally in front of the party’s Nayapaltan headquarters. Police reportedly rejected that too. Around 7:30pm, Rizvi called another briefing in which he told journalists

16 The Central Medical Stores Depot (CMSD) has procured a drug at Tk700 apiece for DMCH’s new Bone Marrow Transplant unit - a staggering 4,661% more than the Tk14.70 paid by the DMCH only just a few months ago.

tion tickets this time – Shamim Osman is one of them. Speaker Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury, an elected MP from the women’s’ reserved seats, also failed to get nomination for the Noakhali-1 constituency. “I have nothing to say about the nomination. This is party decision,” the speaker told the Dhaka Tribune. Tanvir Imam, the son of the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s former adviser HT Imam, received nomination for the Sirajganj-4 constituency. Syed Ashraful Islam, the party general secretary, announced the names of

the candidates at the Dhanmondi office amid cheers of the party supporters. The Awami League leaders said many of the candidates would have been dropped had the main opposition contested the polls. Syed Asharaf said the list was of the Awami League and it “could be changed” after holding talks with the component organisations of the 14-party alliance and Jatiya Party. “This list is not final. We will take the 14-party alliance and the Grand Alliance into cognisance while  PAGE 2 COLUMN 4


Earlier, workers of some adjacent sweater factories held a rally in front of Standard Group on Thursday afternoon demanding a wage hike. They called upon Standard Group workers to take part in the rally. At one stage the agitated workers began to throw brick chips at the factory. Police rushed to the spot and drove them away by firing rubber bullets and teargas, local people who witnessed the incident told this reporter. Later at night, the agitated workers returned in front of the factory and when police fired tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse them they locked in clashes with police, they said. “When about 200 workers were leaving the factory around 10:30pm  PAGE 2 COLUMN 3




Saturday, November 30, 2013

Campaign materials still on display in city EC asks for a list of electoral code violators of metropolitan police and city corpon Mohammad Zakaria rations to remove all campaign maBillboards, banners and posters of aspiring parliamentary candidates are still on display in Dhaka despite a directive of the Election Commission to take them down by Thursday night. During a visit to the city’s Mirpur, Mohammadpur, Bijoy Sarani and Farmgate areas yesterday, there were still many unremoved campaign materials flouting the electoral code of conduct. There are allegations that some candidates have even replaced old materials with new ones. The EC yesterday asked the metropolitan police commissioner, the district police super and the returning officer to prepare a list of the code violators, officials said, adding that “stern action” would be taken against them if found guilty. Earlier, the commission asked political parties and aspiring candidates to take down all their advertising materials by Thursday night. It also said the costs of removing those would have to be borne by those responsible for them. Mohammad Shah Alam, a senior election officer of Dhaka, said the commission had instructed the authorities

terials as soon as possible. “It would take stern action against anyone found guilty of violating the code.” EC officials also sounded similar cautions and said show-cause notices would be sent to the violators once the deadline for filing nomination papers was over. According to section 12 of the code of conduct, political parties or their nominated candidates and independent candidates or any person on their behalf, can launch electoral campaigns starting three weeks prior to the scheduled voting day. A violation of the code would be considered an offence punishable by up to six months in prison or up to Tk50,000 in fine, or both. If the offender is a political party, the maximum punishment is a fine of Tk50,000. The 10th parliamentary polls are scheduled to be held on January 5. The last day for filing nomination papers is December 2 while the last date for withdrawal of candidature is December 13. The returning officers of the commission will scrutinise nomination papers on December 5-6. l

Saturday’s primary terminal exams rescheduled n Tribune Report

The Primary Terminal Examination (PTE), also known as Primary School Certificate examination, for Saturday has been rescheduled to December 6. Information and Public Relation Officer of Primary and Mass Education Ministry Rabindranath Roy informed the Dhaka Tribune. The examination will be held at 9:30am, said the official. The decision was made during a meeting at the education ministry on Friday, immediately after the 18-party called a fresh blockade. Earlier on Wednesday, the education ministry rescheduled the exam as BNP extended its 48-hour blockade. The PTE started on November 20, this year a total of 2,950,193 class-V stu-

dents are registered to take the public exam. The examinations will end on November 28. Chittagong University authorities on Friday postponed the admission tests of six subjects under “B” unit. The authorities said the exams were postponed due to the 72-hour fresh blockade called by the BNP-led 18-party alliance. Professor Dr Imran Hossain, dean of Arts and Humanity Faculty, told the Dhaka Tribune that they would announce a date for the admission tests later. Besides, the viva examination of “D” unit will be held on December 6 instead of November 30. More detail could be found at the university website l

A victim of Thursday’s petrol bomb attack on a bus undergoing treatment at the DMCH burn unit yesterday

BRTC bus torched n Kailash Sarkar An articulated bus of Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation (BRTC) was set on fire in front of Bangla College in the capital’s Mirpur area yesterday. Confirming the incident, Imtiyaz Ahmed, Deputy Commissioner (DC) of Mirpur Division, said unidentified criminals torched the government-owned bus while it was crossing the area around 1pm. “No casualties were reported as the bus was almost empty,” the DC said. “We are not sure yet whether the opposition members were involved with the attack,” he added. Hefazat-e-Islam staged a countrywide agitation programme to press home their demands yesterday. The bus driver and his helper could not be traced, as their mobile phones remained switched off since the occurrence of the incident, said Imtiyaz. “We are trying to verify whether they had any links with the arson attack,” added the DC. l

Zafar, Mosih ‘take’ JP helm n ManikMiazee Kazi Zafar Ahmed, the recently expelled Jatiya Party leader, has claimed that the party Presidium declared him the president and Golam Mosih the secretary general of the party. A press release issued by Zafar’s Press Secretary Golam Mostafa claimed yesterday that a meeting of the party’s Presidium members, vice-chairman, lawmakers and executive committee members made the decision in the afternoon. The meeting was held at Golam Mosih’s Gulshan residence around 4pm. According to the press release, JP Presidium members Kazi Zafar Ahmed and Golam Mosih were made the party chairman and secretary general until the next party council. The press note also stated that the party dismissed its present chairman HM Ershad for “being inconsistent in his positions.” The meeting fixed December 18 for holding the next council of the Jatiya Party as per section 37 of the party’s charter.

Party insiders told the Dhaka Tribune that earlier in the day, Kazi Zafar had made a sudden visit to BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia’s Gulshan residence. Details of the sudden meeting could not be known immediately, but sources close to Kazi Zafar said the meeting was to discuss the current political situation of the country. On Thursday, Jatiya Party Chairman HM Ershad and Kazi Zafar expelled each other from the party. Ershad expelled Kazi Zafar for making frequent statements against him “violating the party charter.” An hour later, Kazi Zafar sent Ershad a suspension letter, claiming that he was the “all-in-all” in the Jatiya Party, not Ershad. He also claimed that majority of the Presidium members were with him and they would expel Ershad through a special council within a day or two. On Saturday, Zafar stated that Ershad had betrayed the nation by joining the polls-time government. Recently, Golam Mosih also resigned from the party. l


JP grassroots accuse top brass  PAGE 1 COLUMN 2

candidates to 299 constituencies for the 10th national elections. “We have never heard the names that the party has nominated, especially those who were given tickets to run in the elections from Jessore 1, 2, and 3 constituencies,” said Altaf Hossain Razib, secretary general of Jessore district unit JP. Many other leaders, who did not get JP ticket, questioned the party’s decision to give nomination to unknown faces. Party Secretary General ABM Ruhul Amin Hawlader, however, denied the allegations saying those who failed to get ticket had been saying such things. Kazi Firoz Rashid, member of the parliamentary committee, told the Dhaka Tribune: “Such a situation arising out of dissatisfaction is not unusual for a political party.” The Dhaka Tribune tried to contact party chief HM Ershad over phone; but he rejected the calls. l

Government using intel agencies RMG factory

Day of drama ends in another blockade



Joint Secretary General Abdul Latif Jony, the former premier alleged that the government had pushed the country towards uncertainty as it was planning to hold a lopsided election avoiding dialogue and compromise cleverly. “The Election Commission has fuelled the fire,” Khaleda said in her first-ever statement since the arrest of party leaders, including six top ones, and announcement of the three-day blockade. She claimed that the prime minister had publicly instigated attacks on and torching of vehicles owned by opposition men. “Who will file the case against her for instigating violence?” the BNP chief said. Khaleda said her party’s acting secretary general had urged people to take

to the streets warning not to vandalise any vehicles, but his statement had been distorted and now a case had been filed against him on charge of instigating violence. Harshly condemning filing of cases against the BNP-led 18-party alliance leaders and activists, she demanded immediate withdrawal of the cases and release of the detained leaders and activists. “Do not choose the path of autocracy. The consequences will be like those of an autocrat. “Create the atmosphere of a dialogue to open the door to hold free, fair and credible elections under a non-partisan interim government,” she said. Khaleda expressed deep shock for the deceased and urged the people to participate in the opposition’s logical movement. l

Ban Ki-moon writes to Hasina  PAGE 1 COLUMN 1

prime minister that he is sending Taranco to Dhaka and sought cooperation on his deputy’s behalf,” he said. The letter was sent to the PMO on Wednesday after UN Resident Coordinator Neil Walker met Foreign Secretary Md Shahidul Haque at the ministry. On the other hand, although BNP Vice-Chairman Shamsher Mobin Chowdhury confirmed that the opposition chief received the UN chief’s letter, he refused to disclose anything in detail about it. “Even If I knew the content [of the letter], I cannot disclose it.” This will be Taranco’s third visit to Bangladesh. He came to Dhaka in December last year and this May. Similar letters were sent to the two ladies during Taranco’s previous two visits as well. During Taranco’s visit, he would hold meetings with the Election Commission and the foreign secretary. The meeting with the EC would be a technical one and discuss how UN could help holding the next election, the foreign ministry official said.

The UN did not have any mandate to send any observer for monitoring election but it might facilitate observers of other countries and regions, he said. In the last two visits, Taranco held series of meetings with all the major stakeholders including the prime minister, leader of the opposition, speaker of the house, chief election commissioner, leaders of other political parties and members of the civil society. During his last visit in May, the deputy UN chief expressed concerns with the fast running out time for finding a path to holding free, fair, credible and non-violent elections. On October 22, BNP claimed that Taranco had called up BNP acting secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, welcoming BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia’s proposal for forming polls-time government with advisers to the past caretaker governments. On September 8, US Secretary of State John Kerry sent separate letters to the prime minister and the leader of the opposition. He also urged the two leaders to come to a consensus regarding the next elections. l


after their shifts were over a clash was going on outside. As soon as the workers came outside police fired rubber bullets, injuring 20 workers,” said Line Chief of the factory Tariqul Islam and other workers. Then someone made an announcement through a loudspeaker from a nearby mosque that two workers died in police firing. As the rumour flew around hundreds of workers of Standard Group and from adjacent factories entered the factory and set the three buildings on fire, local people said. Gazipur Civil Defence and Fire Service Deputy Assistant director Akhtaruzzaman Liton said 12 units of fire service department from local and Dhaka Headquarters worked jointly and around 1:30pm the fire was brought under control. However, the fire again spread as it came in contact with liquid chemicals kept inside the premises. “The 10-storey main building and two six-storey buildings were completely gutted. We cannot estimate the loss at this moment.” Standard Group head office General Manager Rezaul Karim said 18 loaded covered vans that were ready for shipment and 13 other vehicles, including private car, micro bus, and small covered vans of the factory were burnt to ashes. “All three buildings, vehicles, finished products and all other materials inside the factory were destroyed by the fire,” he said. Standard Group Senior Manager NurE-Alam said the company started its venture in 2012 with Tk15bn investment. Gazipur Industrial Police Inspector Shawkat Kabir said he did not have any information about the death of any worker. “We have fired rubber bullets only to control the situation and to protect properties.” Meanwhile, Gazipur District Commissioner Mohammad Nurul Islam formed a seven-member probe committee headed by Additional District Magistrate Mohammad Mohsin to investigate the incident. l

that police had denied them permission to hold programmes in the capital. Around 9:30pm, from another briefing, Rizvi made the announcement for the fresh blockade. At least 21 people, including two in an arson attack on a passenger bus in the capital’s Shahbagh on Thursday night, were killed around the country during blockade violence. The announcement comes only six hours after at least 14 top opposition leaders were sued in a case filed in connection with the Shahbagh arson attack. Party insiders have said although the initial announcement was for a 72-hour programme, there are chances that that it may be extended, just like the previous blockade programme which was extended twice. In recent time, this is the first in-

stance of the opposition staging a major programme on Saturday – a weekly holiday. Earlier, around 7:30pm yesterday, BNP’s ally Jamaat-e-Islami’s Assistant Secretary General Barrister Abdur Razzaque met opposition chief Khaleda Zia at her Gulshan office. Party insiders said Razzaque and Khaleda discussed their next course of action. Meanwhile, protesting repression on opposition leaders and activists, local units of BNP in Dinajpur, Chittagong, Bogra and Cox’s Bazar have called daylong hartal for tomorrow, which is likely to be enforced alongside the blockade. Yesterday after the Jumma prayers, the opposition alliance offered Gayebana Janaza in Nayapaltan, praying for salvation of the souls of those killed in the past three days’ violence.

AL names candidates for JS polls  PAGE 1 COLUMN 5

making the final list of candidates,” Syed Ashraf said. Former minister and MP (Jessore-2) ambassador Mostofa Faruque Mohammed who served Abul Hossain’s SHAHCO that was blamed for corruption conspiracy in the Padma bridge project, was also dropped. Golam Rabbani, a leader of the 2006 Kansat movement during the rule of the BNP, was given party ticket for Chapainawabganj-1 constituency, replacing former state minister for energy M Enamul Haque. AFM Bahauddin Nasim has managed the party ticket for Madaripur-3 seat, the constituency of Syed Abul Hossain. The party leaders and activists shouted aloud as Syed Ashraful Islam announced AFM Bahauddin Nasim’s name. Md Golam Maula Rony, who embarrassed the government by making anti-Awami League statements in TV talk shows and was later arrested for assaulting a TV reporter, was not given party ticket for the Patuakhali-3 seat. But AKM Jahangir Hussain, who

was deprived of the nomination in the last election for his anti-Sheikh Hasina stance during the rule of the military-backed caretaker government, got the party ticket for the Patuakhali-3 constituency. Talukdar Mohammad Towhid Jung Murad, who was backer of the Rana Plaza owner Sohel Rana, was picked as party candidate. Dr Enamur Rahman, the owner of the Enam Hospital that earned fame for treating the victims of the Rana Plaza in Savar, won the nomination for the Savar constituency (Dhaka-19). The Awami League leadership was embarrassed as the world media linked Towhid Jung Murad with the Rana Plaza collapse stories. He was in the bad books of the government as huge complaints of land occupation were brought against him. Controversial leader Shamim Osman got the party ticket for the Narayanganj-4 seat in place of popular actress Sarah Begum Kabari. The Awami League leaders in Narayanganj are divided over Shamim Osman who and his brother Nasim Osman are allegedly involved in

After the janaza, BNP acting secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir once again said his party wanted to hold polls through compromise and understating with the ruling party. “I will request the Election Commission again ... there is still time in your hands. Postpone the election schedule of a one-sided election …take initiatives to hold an inclusive election,” he said. That was the first time that Fakhrul came out in public after November 25, when the opposition announced the blockade programme. He, however, left the area on a motorbike almost immediately after the janaza prayers were over. Meanwhile, protesting repression on opposition leaders and activists, local units of BNP in Dinajpur, Chittagong, Bogra and Cox’s Bazar have called daylong hartals for tomorrow. l

promoting muscle power there. Shamim Osman fled the country after the BNPled government came to power in 2001. Another controversial MP of the Mymensingh-10 constituency, Ghyas Uddin Ahmed, who opened fire on party workers, failed to confirm his nomination. Ghyas reportedly told a public meeting in his constituency Goforgaon, Mymensingh that he did not fear anyone as he shot the former president Major Gen Ziaur Rahman, the BNP’s de-facto founder. In Jessore, three of the six sitting MPs failed to get nomination. Amirul Islam got the Jessore-2 ticket replacing Mostofa Faruque Mohammed. Kazi Nabil Ahmed got the nomination for the Jessore-3 constituency, now represented by Khaledur Rahman Tito. Whip of the Jatiya Sangsad Sk Abdul Wohab failed to manage the party ticket for the Jessore-5 constituency that went to Ismat Sadeque. Two Awami League presidium members, Mohammad Nasim and Kazi Zafar Ullah - who were charged with corruption by the military-backed interim administration - got nomination for the Sirajganj-1 and Faridpur-4 seats respectively. l




Saturday, November 30, 2013

BPC fixes fuel oil import premiums for Jan-Jun 2014 n Aminur Rahman Rasel

The Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation has finalised the premiums for eight foreign companies for importing refined fuel oil in the first half of the next year. BPC officials said the per-barrel premiums of diesel, octane and jet fuel had been kept the same as the existing ones. The cost of high speed furnace oil would come down by $2 per tonne. A high-powered delegation led by Energy Secretary Md Mozammel Haque Khan had visited Singapore on November 19-26 to negotiate the premiums for the January-June 2014 period. The premiums – transportation, insurance and other costs – are reviewed every six months. BPC Chairman Md Eunusur Rahman yesterday said the premium of diesel had been finalised at $4.80 per barrel, jet fuel and kerosene at $5.80 per barrel, and octane $7.5 per barrel. The premium of furnace oil had been set at $35 per tonne, sources said. The BPC, the country’s lone oil importer-distributor, was set to import

7.7m tonnes of petroleum fuel next year; the fuel demand this year was 5.3m tonnes, corporation officials said. “The BPC will import 2.7m tonnes of diesel, 700,000 tonnes of furnace oil, 300,000 tonnes of jet fuel, 10,000 tonnes of kerosene, and 30,000 tonnes of octane,” an official of the BPC told the Dhaka Tribune yesterday. The BPC strikes deals with national oil companies of other countries under government-to-government contracts for at least two years. Bangladesh’s suppliers are the Kuwait Petroleum Corporation, Malaysia-based PETCO – a trading wing of Petronas, UAE-based Emirates National Oil Company, Chinese National Oil Company’s trading wing Petrochina, Egyptian National Oil Company or Midor, Vietnamese National Oil Company or Petro Limex, Philippines National Oil Company, and Bumisiek of Indonesia. The BPC chairman said they would send a report to the cabinet committee on public purchase for approval. The corporation annually imports about 5m tonnes of crude and refined oil at an average price of Tk500bn. l

Students of Viqarunnisa Noon School sit for the Primary School Certificate examinations yesterday as earlier dates of exams were postponed because of the BNP-led 18-party opposition alliance’s blockade programmes NASHIRUL ISLAM

Standard Group fire a ‘sabotage’: BGMEA n Ibrahim Hossain Ovi Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) has termed the fire incident at Standard Group as “sabotage.” “It is a complete act of sabotage aimed to create anarchy in the readymade garment sector. All groups including workers, trade union leaders and vested quarters are involved in torching the Standard Group,” BGMEA president Atiqul Islam told the Dhaka Tribune yesterday. On Thursday night, hearing rumour of death of two fellow garment workers, hundreds of RMG workers of Standard Garments factory set fire to two 10-storiead buildings of Standard

Group in Gazipur. Atiqul said: “This would send a negative message to the world and tarnish our image. The country has to face dire consequence like Srilanka.” The BGMEA will hold a meeting on Sunday at 12noon with chiefs of all trade bodies including the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FBCCI), to devise ways to overcome the present turmoil that recently the sector had witnessed, said Atiq. “We will decide on the next course of action after holding the meeting in line with the recommendations made by trade body’s leaders,” he added. Regarding the state of the factory, Islam said the factory was a 100 percent

compliant one and there was no reason for unrest as the factory owners had provided all the necessary facilities to the workers. “The incident would leave 1800 workers in dark as they would lose their jobs and we do not have the capacity to create jobs for such a huge number of people at a time.” “On behalf of the country’s apparel makers, I urge the government to take punitive and protective measures to save the highest foreign currency earning sector from the hands of evil,” said Islam. BGMEA Vice-President Shahidullah Azim told the present time was not favourable to run business as there was no control over the situation and none could handle the unruly workers. l

Fire-fighters examine the ruins of a collapsed four-storey under-construction building in Old Dhaka yesterday



BNP leader Mir Nasir sent to jail n Tarek Mahmud, Chittagong A Chittagong court yesterday sent Mir Mohammad Nasir Uddin, adviser to BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia, to jail in a case filed in connection with arson and vandalism on November 27 while he received bail in another similar case. Metropolitan Magistrate Syed Masfiqul Islam passed the order yesterday around 4:55pm after the BNP leader was produced before the court. The leader was accused in the two cases lodged with Kotwali and Chawkbazar police stations in the port city’s Kajir Dewri and Chatweshwari Road areas Wednesday, second day of the blockade enforced by the opposition. Earlier, the same court granted an ad-interim bail in another case filed with Kotwali police station on the same charge till the next hearing scheduled to be held on December 3. The BNP leader was first produced before the court at 3:45pm when the defence counsels, advocate Nazim Uddin and advocate Abdus Sattar, pleaded for bail terming the case politically motivated. Mir Mohammad Nasir Uddin was shown arrested in the case filed with Chawkbazar police station and produced before the same court around 4:45pm seeking a five-day remand while the court sent him to jail. After the court session, BNP-backed lawyers staged demonstration on the

OSD government officials to appeal to CEC for posting n Rabiul Islam A number of aggrieved government officials who have been languishing as officers on special duty (OSD) for five to seven years are to appeal to the chief election commissioner for advancements in their careers. “We will appeal to the chief election commissioner to at least give us postings,” Abdul Bari, one of the OSDs from the 85th batch, told the Dhaka Tribune over phone yesterday. He said: “An appointment to the chief election commissioner has been sought through his Personal Secretary, Md Mazharul Islam.” Talking to the Dhaka Tribune, Mazharul Islam confirmed that the officers have sought an appointment but no decision on this has been made yet.

Meanwhile, Abdul Bari pointed out that there were instances that during the previous interim government, the election commission had given promotion and postings. On Wednesday, dozens of aggrieved government officers separately met the Cabinet Secretary Musharraf Hossain Bhuiyan and the Senior Secretary, Abdus Sobhan Sikder to the public administration ministry. “When we met the cabinet secretary, he told us that the election commission was now the authority to give postings,” another officer, now OSD for about seven years, said. Kamruzzaman Chowdhury, an officer from the 85th batch said: “We would request the chief election commissioner to give us promotions and postings as now there was no political governments.”

The officials alleged that they were being deprived of their due promotions and postings during the immediate past Awami League-led 14-party alliance government’s tenure although they had no complaints against them. However, many officials who had allegations of corruption against them were given promotions, they said. Cabinet secretary, in the meantime, said if an officer behaved or acted against the government, naturally it could not cannot promote that officer. According to official records, over 600 officers including four secretaries, 39 additional secretaries and 338 joint-secretaries were made OSDs at the public administrations ministry during the last five years. The government has to pay the OSDs without taking any service from them. l

One shot dead in Cox’s Bazar n Tribune Report

A man was shot dead and 25 people, including two cops, were injured in a triangular clash involving activists of the ruling party and BNP, and police in Chakaria municipality area yesterday evening. Local BNP claimed Zaker was its activist while police said he was a pedestrian. Ranjit Kumar Barua, OC of Chakaria police station, said activists of BNP and its associate bodies had brought out a procession from the bus stand area in the municipality after the namaz-e-janaza for Jatiyatabadi Jubodal leader Abdul Halim, who was beaten to death allegedly by police. At one stage, they ran riot and started vandalising vehicles, he said, adding that they also attacked the police when the law enforcers tried to resist them. Police fired over 100 blank shots. l

court premises protesting the court order. Advocate Abdus Sattar, counsel for the BNP leader, alleged that the court gave the order through the interference of the government.

A Chittagong court sent the BNP leader and activists to jail rejecting their bail prayers “Mir Nasir got bail in a case while the court sent him to jail in another similar case that proved the government interference,” he said. Police held Mir Nasir from Shah Amanat International Airport in the port city Thursday night when he attempted to go to the capital by air. In protest against his arrest, BNP activists torched and vandalised some vehicles at Hathazari upazila Thursday night while no casualties were reported. Meanwhile, BNP central Organising Secretary Golam Akbar Khandakar was detained along with six others Thursday morning, third day of the opposition’s blockade, from the port city. A Chittagong court sent the BNP leader and activists to jail rejecting their bail prayers. The port city turned into a virtual battlefield on the day as the opposition activists clashed with law enforcers in several areas. l

14 BNP leaders implicated in Shahbagh arson case

n Kailash Sarkar

At least 14 senior leaders of main opposition BNP and its associate bodies have been implicated in a case filed in connection with torching a passenger bus in the capital’s Shahbagh on Thursday that killed at least two. The accused leaders are acting secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, standing committee members Mirza Abbas and Goyeshwar Chandra Roy, former Dhaka mayor Sadeque Hossain Khoka, vice-chairman of Dhaka city unit BNP Abdus Salam, joint secretary generals Ruhul Kabir Rizvi, Barkat Ullah Bulu, Aman Ullah Aman and central leaders Khairul Kabir Khokon and Nazim Uddin Alam. Up to three unnamed criminals were also directly accused in the case filed by a sub-inspector of the Shahbagh police station. Sources said the BNP leaders, on the other hand, had been implicated as the planners and instigators of the deadly arson that left at least 18 passengers critically burnt. Masudur Rahman, deputy commissioner of Dhaka Metropolitan Police, confirmed the leaders’ names. He also said no one had so far been arrested because those directly involved with the attack were yet to be identified. Three women and the driver among the 19 victims were caught by fire when criminals hurled what police thinks could be a patrol bomb or gunpowder through the window of the bus. One of the victims Mohammad Nahid died Thursday night. l




Saturday, November 30, 2013

Blockade cripples transport system, prices shoot skyward Bakar Siddique and n Abu Ibrahim Hossain Ovi Transport owners charging more than double the usual, an acute supply shortage of essentials and fear of escalating violence in the coming weeks have played havoc in the capital’s kitchen markets pushing prices almost through the middle-class’s roofs. In the weeks prior to the one ending today, traders used to transport essentials to the capital city at night even during hartals. But things have been different with the recent 71-hour countrywide road, waterway and railroad blockade programme enforced by the 18-party opposition combine. With more than 500 trucks and covered vans vandalised and torched in the last three months in violent incidents, transport owners are not willing anymore to bring out their vehicles, especially on the highways which happen to be one of the cream spots for vandalism and arson.

Babul Mia, a wholesaler at Karwan Baazar, told the Dhaka tribune that he had to pay Tk35,000 for a truck, which, under normal circumstances, would have cost him only about Tk16,000. “Bringing even one of the usual consignments to the market was a struggle because the truckers are unwilling to ply during blockades,” Babul said. Lokman Hussain, general secretary of Karwan Bazaar Kitchen Market Wholesalers Association, said: “The ongoing countrywide political violence, including arsons and vandalisms, crippled the transportation system; hence the acute supply shortage of vegetables and the rocketing prices.” Rustom Ali, president of Bangladesh Covered Van and Truck Owners’ Association, told the Dhaka Tribune that transport business had nosedived in the last few months because of hartals and blockade. He also said: “We have been carrying essential commodities at night time during hartals; but this blockade has forced us to stop doing that as well.”

On an average, around 1,000 trucks, carrying rice and vegetables, come to Dhaka every day, said Nirod Baran Saha, president of Rice Dealers’ Association of Naogaon. But the number has come down to merely a hundred since violence escalated, he said. Some traders and wholesalers of Karwan Bazar, the biggest kitchen market in the capital, told the Dhaka Tribune that they had been scared about what might happen in the coming weeks. “If BNP calls more strikes, then we will have to pull down the shutter because of the raging supply shortage,” one of them said. Uncertainties of an equal degree have gripped consumers as well. “The two major parties are leading the country towards a death valley, making our lives miserable. We are having to pay higher prices for essentials for the political turmoil,” said Abu Abdullah, a government official, who came to the Kalmilata kitchen market yesterday for getting weekly grocery. “I am already having to spend 20-

30% higher, compared to the previous week,” he said. This correspondent, who visited a number of kitchen markets in the capital yesterday, found that the prices of winter vegetables which come in greater variety and taste than any other time of the year, had been affected the most. As of yesterday, green chilli, which sold for Tk50 per kg last week, sold for Tk6070; the price of locally grown onion was as high at Tk80, while imported onion sold at Tk60; brinjal sold for Tk40-Tk45, beans Tk30-Tk40, potatoes Tk20-Tk30, tomatoes Tk70, gourd Tk60 and cauliflower Tk30-Tk40 per piece. Local ginger sold at Tk100, while imported Tk90. The prices of all these items were Tk5-Tk10 less last week. Although the prices of less perishable items such as sugar, soybean oil, pulse, powdered chilli and turmeric remained somewhat stable this week, traders said they had no idea what would happen once their stocks ran out and they could not bring in replenishments because of the political violence. l


Case lodged against unnamed 25, probe committee formed n Our Correspondent, Barisal Police have started investigating the explosion of three trucks, including one laden with 480 cylinders of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), which took place in Barisal late Wednesday. A case lodged in this connection was turned into a regular criminal case yesterday. Sakhwat Hossain, officer in charge of Barisal Kotwali police station, said SM Zakir Hosain, owner of one of the burnt trucks, had lodged a general diary accusing 25 unnamed individuals which was later turned into a regular criminal case, under sections 15(1) (3) of Special Power Act and 323 and 427 of Penal Code. Zakir registered the diary on Thursday afternoon, alleging that a group of unknown pickets had torched his empty truck and an LPG-laden one during the opposition-sponsored blockade, as well as damaged another parked nearby – causing losses worth Tk5.8m. Police had already visited the spot and started collecting evidence related to the incident, Sub-Inspector Faisal Ahmed, investigation officer of the

ASK concerned over violent movements n Tribune Report

Police recover firearms on information from Tofail

n Tribune Report

Ain O Salish Kendra (ASK) yesterday defended the right to organise movements in a “democratic and peaceful way” and the freedom of speech, but said violence in the name of establishing those rights could not be acceptable. A press release issued by the rights body’s Executive Director Sultana Kamal made this observation yesterday.

Tofail Ahmed, one of the alleged masterminds of last year’s rampage against the Buddhist community in Ramu, gave information to Cox’s Bazar police which led yesterday to the recovery of two firearms from Joroillatoli, a bordering area between Ramu upazila and Bandarban. Tofail Ahmed, Bandarban’s Naikhyong chhari upazila Chairman, was arrested Thursday. A top police official in Ramu told the Dhaka Tribune that during primary interrogation, Tofail informed police about the location of the recovered arms in a hilly area in Joroillatoli.

This sort of incident is unheard-of and deeply disturbing, ostensibly meant to create and spread panic The organisation also expressed “deep concerns” over the bloody political developments of recent weeks, with particular reference to the arson attack on a passenger bus on the third day of the opposition-sponsored blockade. “This sort of incident is unheardof and deeply disturbing, ostensibly meant to create and spread panic.” ASK urged the government and law enforcement agencies to take “concrete measures” to prevent repetition of such incidents and demanded a fair investigation and punishment to those involved. On Thursday, 19 passengers suffered severe burns as a Bihanga Paribahan bus of Sadarghat-Mirpur route came under attack near Matsya Bhaban at Shahbagh area at around 6pm, when two picketers riding on a motorcycle threw a petrol bomb on the running vehicle. Two of the victims died in the last two days. l


Dry weather likely n UNB Weather may remain dry with temporary partly cloudy sky over the country until 6pm today. Night and day temperature may remain nearly unchanged over the country, Met office said. The sun sets in the capital at 5:11pm today and rises at 6:24am tomorrow. Country’s highest temperature 33.4 degree Celsius was recorded yesterday at Jessore and lowest 14.6 degrees at Mymensingh. Highest and lowest temperature recorded in some major cities yesterday were: City



Dhaka Chittagong Rajshahi Rangpur Khulna Barisal Sylhet Cox’s Bazar

29.6 29.4 29.8 28.5 30.5 30.4 30.5 31.7

18.4 22.9 15.7 17.5 20.0 21.0 17.1 22.5

PRAYER TIMES Fajar Sunrise Zohr Asr Magrib Esha

case, said. On the other hand, the Barisal Fire Service Station formed a probe committee of its own – comprised of three members – and asked it to submit its findings within 10 working days. Sources at the fire service said the incident could lead to a massive industrial disaster because of the place where it occurred. Pickets torched the LPG-laden truck right outside the gates of a chemical factory – Global Capsules and Chemical Industry and Nova Packaging of the Opsonin Group – packed with a large stock of hydrochloric acid, at the city’s Rupatali industrial zone. It took a 30-member fire team over one-and-a-half hours to tame the blaze before it could come in contact with the stock of acid preserved inside the building. However, it did manage to gut a few shops and trees located in the adjacent areas and damaged factory properties worth Tk7m. Moreover, most of the cylinders on the targeted truck, approximately worth Tk2m, had either exploded or been damaged by the heat generated by the fire. l

5:04am 6:23am 11:47am 3:34pm 5:10pm 6:30pm


On September 29 last year, communal fanatics burnt 12 Buddhist temples to ashes and vandalised six more places of worship

A policeman scans a devotee who came for Juma prayers at the Baitul Mukarram mosque yesterday as part of added security amid the country’s political unrest


Post-blockade traffic rush hits the capital n Ashif Islam Shaon City dwellers experienced huge rush of vehicles on roads and crowd at the bus terminals, launch terminals and railway station yesterday after the 71-hour blacked programme imposed by the opposition that ended at 5am. Fearing possibilities of more political violence in the coming week, people poured out of home to address the pending tasks or to head outside the capital. Shopping malls and recreation centers were also abuzz with crowd in the capital. According to traffic control room of Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP), the pressure of vehicles started increasing since afternoon. A rush of traffic slowed down the vehicle movement on most of the major roads. Number of buses and private cars started increasing with time.

“We could not bring out the bus on road for three consecutive days. So all the drivers like me have hit the road today,” said Mossaraf Ali, a driver of Safety Paribahan on Azimpur-Mirpur 12 route. Inter-district buses started to head for destinations from Gabtoli Bus Terminal from morning. Crowd at the terminal kept increasing as day proceeded. “We sometimes experience this kind of crowd before the weekends if there are extra one or two holidays ahead. I think today’s crowd is a wave of commuters who were waiting inside home being unable to leave Dhaka during the blockade programme,” said Aminur Rahman, counter master of Satkhira Delux. Passengers echoed with Aminur. Nadira Mustafiz, a primary school teacher came to the city from Kochua, Khulna on Sunday to consult doctor.

She said: “I thought I would leave on Thursday evening after seeing the doctor. But as they extended the blockade programme, I have to come again next week and seek a new appointment.” Staff at the bus counters said tickets were sold out in a blink of an eye. Sadarghat Launch Terminal witnessed more passengers than usual that created traffic jam in the adjacent roads in the older part of Dhaka. According to Senior Deputy Director of Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Authority (BIWTA) Safiul Haque, 55 launches reached the terminal in the morning while 23 had already left the terminal by 12:30pm. 2o more were scheduled to sail by 12:30am. Mamun Khan, assistant master of MV Rof on Chandpur route said they were returning from a trip from Chandpur in the morning with thinner passengers but hoped that at night the down trip would be fully- packed.

Meanwhile, train passengers suffered severely as the authorities had to reshuffle the train schedule in the wake of subversive activities on railways. Turna Express, and Mohanagar Provati, along with four other trains could not reach the Kamalapur Railway Station on time. A total of 12 trains reached the station till evening and left the station for destinations. Among them Isha Khan Express, Jayantika Express, Parabat Express, Dhumketu Express and Karnofuli Express were delayed by 30 minutes up to two hours. A number of passengers waited for hours for the trains to arrive as per the previous schedule. Many passengers had to take to the rooftops of the trains because of the excessive number of passengers. Contacted, Station Manager Khairul Bashir of Kamalapur Railway Station said it would take one more day to follow the new schedule. l

Julfikar Ali Manik wins DRU award for investigative report n Tribune Report Jufikar Ali Manik, a special correspondent of the Dhaka Tribune, won the Shagor-Runi Award of Dhaka Reporters Unity (DRU) for his investigative report on the attack on Buddhists in Ramu. The report titled ‘A Devil’s Design’ was published in The Daily Star on October 14, 2012, before he joined this paper. Manik received Tk100,000, a crest and a certificate. Dhaka University Vice-Chancellor AAMS Arefin Siddique gave away the prizes after the annual general meeting of DRU yesterday. Ten other reporters of different print and electronic media received awards in different categories,

each receiving Tk50,000, a crest and certificate. Sharifuzzaman Pintu of Prothom Alo was awarded for reporting on education, Kazi Hafiz of Kaler Kantha for reporting on election and democracy, Selim Jahid of Prothom Alo for political affairs, Reazuddin of Alokito Bangladesh for foreign affairs, Parimal Shaha Titu of Vhorer Kagoj for city problems, Jharna Mani of Vhorer Kagoj for liberation war affairs, Mazumder Babu of Channel-24 for economic affairs, Rokonuddin of NTV for city problems, Mostofa Mallick of Channel-i for humanistic report, and Abu Hanif Rana of online media Report.Com-24 for development affairs. l

Dhaka Tribune Special Correspondent Julfikar Ali Manik accepts the Shagor-Runi Award of Dhaka Reporters’ Unity from Dhaka University Vice-Chancellor AAMS Arefin Siddique yesterday RAJIB DHAR

Cox’s Bazar Superintendent of Police Mohammad Azad Mia told the Dhaka Tribune that the recovered firearms were locally made Light Guns. Following the recovery, police filed an arms case with the Ramu police station against Tofail and produced him before a Ramu court in connection with the arms case and another case in connection to the Ramu mayhem. In an unprecedented communal attack in Ramu on September 29 last year, communal fanatics burnt 12 Buddhist temples to ashes and vandalised six more places of worship. Among the cases that were filed last year after the incident, Tofail was accused in three. SP Azad said, the police yesterday produced Tofail before the court in one of the three cases against him. He said police had requested for a seven-day remand to the court to interrogate Tofail. As yesterday was weekend, the court fixed next working day Sunday for hearing of the prayer and ordered to send Tofail to jail. l

AL men resign en masse in Sirajganj n UNB, Sirajganj Leaders and activists of Awami League and its associate bodies of all tiers in Belkuchi upazila resigned en masse Friday evening protesting the party’s denial of polls ticket to former fisheries and livestock minister Abdul Latif Biswas from Sirajganj 5 constituency for the next general election. Leaders and activists of Awami League and its front organisations, including Jubo League, Chhatra League, Mohila League, Krishak League, Sramik League and Swechchhasebak League, signed en masse the resignation letter at the upazila AL office soon after AL general secretary Syed Ashraful Islam announced the list of the party candidates in the capital. Awami League Parliamentary Board has chosen Abdul Mazid to contest the next parliamentary polls from the constituency comprising Belkuchi and Chouhali. Just-resigned AL upazila president AKM Yusuf Khan and general secretary Fazlul Haque Sarker said the party activities would remain halted in the upazila unless Abdul Latif Biswas was given the ticket. l




Saturday, November 30, 2013

Keep away the sore throats During winter, the body experiences a drop in temperature as the environment cools. At the same time, the body is adjusting to HEALTH the new climate. Some FLASH people can’t cope with the environmental changes and catch a few common illnesses. Most can avoid these ailments by just being careful.

Allergic reaction in nose

Cold foggy wind and dust may cause irritation in the nasal cavity which triggers the allergic reaction in the nose. Sneezing, running or watering of the nose, and blockage are the common presenting features in allergic inflammatory reaction of the nose. Those who are more sensitive to cold environment are affected badly and for prolonged period. Antihistamines, nasal drops for relieving the obstruction, and steroid nasal sprays are effective to control the nasal allergy symptoms. If it is left untreated, sinusitis may occur. Sinuses are naturally occurring air-filled spaces in the skull. The sinuses are connected to the nose. In sinusitis, the inner lining of the sinuses becomes inflamed and swollen. This obstructs the drainage of secretion of sinuses to the nose and leads to mucus accumulation in the sinuses. Sinusitis is marked by a sensation of heaviness of the face, a deep and constant pain in the area of the cheekbones, forehead, or bridge of the nose, cough and thick yellowish or greenish nasal discharge. Acute sinusitis should be treated immediately with antibiotics, nasal drops, painkillers and vapour inhalation; otherwise it may turn chronic.

Earache and ear blockage

Sneezing and coughing sometimes follow blockage of ears. The middle ear is

To lower the risk of infection, wash your hands after coming in from outside. This helps keep viruses from getting into your body when you touch your eyes, nose, or mouth



connected to the back of the nose via a small canal called the eustachian tube. Bacteria can make their way into the middle ear via this canal where they are usually flushed out through the eustachian tube. A blockage in the canal usually due to cold/flu can lead to germs getting trapped in the middle ear, causing infection in the middle ear. Children are prone to suffer from this because of the



Lack of sleep leads to heart disease 4100 teens were studied to see the relation between sleep duration and heart disease. Researchers found teenagers who get less sleep are more likely to develop heart problems later in life. Those with poor sleep quality were more likely to be overweight, and have high blood pressure and cholesterol level. These cumulatively increase the risk of getting heart disease. l

Video games at night put teens at risk of diabetes

fluid in the middle ear may last for few weeks or months after an acute infection. It may be necessary to drain the fluid if it fails to drain by medication. Sometimes if it is not treated properly in time, a severe onset of infection may lead to perforation of the ear drum which needs further attention.

Infections in throat and voice box

Most colds start with a sore throat for

Lower your family’s risk

To lower the risk of infection, wash your hands after coming in from outside. This helps keep viruses from getting into your body when you touch your eyes, nose, or mouth. Alcoholbased hand sanitisers also work. Stay away from people who are ill.  If a coworker or friend has the cold or flu, keep your distance. Protect yourself from chilly weather; cover your face. Drape a scarf across your mouth and nose, or wear a winter face mask that covers the bottom half of your face. l

n Prescription Desk

Due to fear of needles, many patients avoid injections. Needle-free injections can be the solution. iHealthNet, a US registered comMEDITECH pany, launched the first commercially available Needlefree Injection Technology (NFIT), the Biojector 2000, to the citizens of Bangladesh. This device has FDA clearance and

through a small orifice of a syringe with sufficient force to penetrate human tissues. This device also provides dose accuracy, and eliminates cross contamination with a very negligible tissue trauma. It is intended for use in clinics by medical personnel on humans, as well as self-use by patients. A Biojector B2000 can provide a minimum of 120,000 shots. Due to its cost effectiveness, recently many hospitals and clinics of Bangladesh have started to use this new needle-free injection. l

Soft drinks are very popular to teens. New research work published in the Journal of Hepatology has linked soft drinks to liver damage, specifically NAFLD (Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease), which may lead to diabetes, insulin resistance, heart disease, obesity and even liver cancer. Soft drinks contain high amount of fructose, which is easily and rapidly absorbed by the liver. Israeli researchers, led by Dr Nimer Assy, said, ”People who consume too much soft drinks develop NAFLD five times faster than those who drink smaller amount.” Previously other researchers found this to cause teeth and bone damage. l


Laughter beats bugs

| Compiled by: Dr Mohammad Sayem

While you are walking, running or doing any other movements of your body you can get trauma, which may cause muscle pain. Before taking any painkillers, or even along with painkillers, you can receive an adjuvant home therapy. Heat 200g of sea salt in a heavy pan. Funnel into a clean, cotton sock (don’t overfill – you will have to leave it pliable, like a beanbag). Pin the end. Apply to the painful area for approximately 30 minutes. The heat helps to stimulate circulation and bring fresh blood to the area to speed up healing. l

Nappy rash

The most effective way to get rid of a diaper or nappy rash is to keep your baby’s skin as clean and dry as possible. The best way to do this is with frequent diaper changes. When your baby has a diaper rash, avoid washing the affected area with soap and disposable, scented wipes. In the past, it was common to use talcum powder to protect a baby’s skin and absorb excess moisture. However, doctors no longer recommend this. Zinc oxide is the active ingredient in many diaper rash creams that can be used to treat and prevent diaper rash. l

Stained teeth


Stay away from soft drinks

Recent research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association indicates that laughter may strengthen the immune system. In the study, 26 men and women were exposed to common allergens, which made them sneeze and experience a sore, raspy throat and tearing eyes. They were then shown a funny video. Symptoms were reduced in all 26 study participants for up to four hours after watching the video. Why? Stress reduction seems to be the key to laughter’s success, say the researchers. l

Muscle pain

The writer is Associate Professor of ENT Department at Holy Family Red Crescent Medical College Hospital, Dhaka.

Needle-free injection is now in Dhaka has been in use since 1987 in various parts of the world including USA, France, Malaysia, Philippines, Africa, Maldives, Sri Lanka and Australia. This eliminates the fear of pain and thus overcomes patients’ aversion to injections. The Biojector 2000 (commonly known as B2000) is designed to deliver vaccines, insulin and other injectable medicine Intramuscularly (IM), Subcutaneously (SC) and Intradermally (ID) by pressurising the liquid dose in a chamber from which it is ejected

Insect bite is a common occurrence. To stop itching and inflammation of mosquito or other insect bites, apply one drop of peppermint oil directly to the bite. Peppermint has anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties. Some insect bites react with the skin very badly and the affected skin becomes swollen and red. So try to meet with a dermatologist at the earliest possible time. l


Teenagers who stay up all night playing video games could be at higher risk of developing diabetes, a new study has found. Psychiatrists from the University of Pittsburgh found that teenagers who got an average of six hours of sleep or less each night had high levels of insulin resistance, a precursor to diabetes. l

growing anatomical and functional status of the tube. Children usually complain of mild to severe pain in the ear and hearing loss due to accumulation of fluid or pus in the middle ear accordingly. The diagnosis of middle ear infection can be made easily by examining the ears. To treat middle ear infections, most of the time, antibiotics, antihistamine, nasal decongestant, and painkillers are needed. Sometimes painless

(inflammation of tonsils), generalised infection in the pharynx is also noticed in cold weather. Most cases of sore throat are the result of acute pharyngitis. Tonsillitis occurs when the infection gets more serious, and the tonsils become painful, swollen, and inflamed. Difficulties in swallowing, fever, and earache are common symptoms of acute tonsillitis. Most cases of tonsillitis are caused by viral infection and antibiotics are not necessary. Symptomatic treatment to relieve pain and inflammation is required. Drinking lots of water is usually advised. Warm drinks and soothing liquids, such as soup, milk, and tea are the best choice. Gargling with warm salt water every four hours is a very effective measure. Sore throat and cough may sometimes extend downwards to the voice box and cause the voice to change. Absolute voice rest and menthol vapour inhalation are effective measures at this stage. For many people, asthma attacks may happen more often in the winter.  The  common cold  and flu are both more likely to strike in the winter and can lead to asthma flare-ups.


Though winter is a little ways away, according to the calendar, we are already waking up to foggy QUICK TIPS mornings, and going home in chilly evenings. What are some of the most common winter diseases in Bangladesh? Let’s find out Insect bites one to two days. Tonsils are mostly afn Dr Sajol Ashfaq fected in the winter. Besides tonsillitis

Traditional syringe with needle

Needle-free injection device

Strawberries are now grown in our country. Strawberries have a lot of nutritional and medicinal benefits. Besides that, fresh strawberries have cleansing and bleaching properties and can help remove tea and coffee stains from teeth. Crush the strawberry gently and rub the pulp onto your teeth, then rinse. l

| Compiled by: Dr Kazi Mahbuba Akhtar

Diet and exercise can prevent cancers n Prescription Desk Healthier eating and increased physical activity could potentially decrease cancer incidence. Yes, about 25% of cancers could be prevented by improvements in diet and exercise, a recent research conDID YOU ducted by Medical journal of AusKNOW? tralia found this. In the study, bowel cancer was found to be the most preventable, followed by female breast cancer, prostate cancer, lung cancer, mouth, and laryngeal cancer. From the study it is now very clear that protecting yourself from these cancers could be as simple as increasing your consumption of fruits, vegetables, and whole grain, and eating less saturated fat and red meat. l





Saturday, November 30, 2013

Port city smallholders bearing brunt of political turmoil n Tarek Mahmud, Chittagong The 16,000 hawkers and street vendors in Chittagong have been facing an acute fall in their sales during the hartals and blockade, according to the general secretary of Chittagong Sammilto Hawkers Federation. Masud Rana says the lower presence of people on the streets and closure of makeshift shops during the opposition programmes are the common factor for such low business. Jamil Ahmed, a bus driver, said bus owners were not interested to run their vehicles on the roads during a shutdown or blockade. “As the hartals or strikes are being enforced continuously, I cannot earn the money which I need to run my family,” he said. Abbas Uddin, the bus owner, said his vehicle had been vandalised 10 times in the last month alone by picketers, discouraging him from bringing the vehicle out of the garage. Kamal Mia, who sells betel leaves at GEC Intersection, said they faced a lot

of sufferings due to hartals or blockade as sales are very low on that days. “I sold betel leaves of Tk200 till 9pm today (on November 27) while on regular days I would have earned up to Tk1,200 by this time,” said Bashir, who is the sole bread earner of a six-member family. Jashim Uddin, a hawker who sells tshirts in the city’s Number-2 Gate area, said he used to sell products worth over Tk2,000, but on hartal days he can hardly manage to earn Tk400 to Tk500. He said he could make sales of only Tk100 by 3:00pm on Thursday. Visiting major thoroughfares of the port city on Wednesday and Thursday,

this correspondent found that most of the makeshift shops of the hawkers, mainly garment sellers, remained closed. Suman, a bagger in Dewanhat area, said he was surviving by eating waste food from dustbins from different road sides as he could earn nothing from November 25 to yesterday. Afsana Sultana, a SSC candidate, said she was worried that the schedule of her upcoming exam may be rescheduled repeatedly due to continuous political unrest. Many businessmen in Chittagong are dependent on the port. Mohammad Nasir Uddin, a clearing and forwarding agent, said his importers’ goods were in the dockyard but he could not shift those to the real owners due to the unrest. Mofizur Rahman, a roadside restaurant owner in the city’s AK Khan Intersection, said picketers burnt his restaurant’s valuables into ashes on November 27. Dhaka Tribune found that on the

same day, strikers set a new motorcycle on fire from a showroom of a private motorcycle company near City Gate area. AJM Nasir Uddin, general secretary of the city unit of ruling Awami League, urged the opposition to refrain from conducting subversive activities during hartal and blockade. Dr Shahadat Hossain, general secretary of the city unit of BNP, said they were continuing their political movements peacefully. He blamed the ruling party for conducting sabotage during their movement periods. Banaz Kumar Majumdar, additional commissioner (crime and operation) of Chittagong Metropolitan Police, said protesters conducted violence all on a sudden that causes huge damage for public properties. The law enforcing agencies have strong vigilance and taking action against the protesters who are conducting sabotage across the city, he said. l

Opposition to enforce hartal in four districts tomorrow n Tribune Report BNP-led 18-party alliance has called for separate daylong hartals in Chittagong, Cox’s Bazar, Dinajpur and Bogra districts for tomorrow on different grounds. In Chittagong, local BNP enforced a dawn-to-dusk shutdown in the district on Sunday protesting the arrest of BNP leaders, including BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia’s adviser, Mir Mohammad Nasir Uddin, and BNP central organising secretary, Ghulam Akbar Khandakar. BNP Vice-Chairman Abdullah Al Noman announced the shutdown while addressing a gathering prior to the gayebana janaza held for those killed during the 71-hour rail-roadwaterway blockade of the opposition at the city’s Jamiatul Falah Mosque ground yesterday noon. Police had arrested Mir Mohammad Nasir Uddin from Shah Amanat International Airport on Thursday night while seven BNP leaders, including Ghulam Akbar Khandakar, Thursday morning. In Cox’s Bazar, the main opposition on Thursday night called a daylong har-

tal in the district for Sunday protesting the killing of Jatiyatabadi Jubodal leader Abdul Halim in a police beating. Shamim Ara Swapna, general secretary of district unit of BNP, said police arrested Halim, organising secretary of Chakaria upazila unit of Jubodal, from Bringa bus stand area in the upazila on Tuesday and had allegedly beat him indiscriminately at the police station. Later, he died at a local hospital on Thursday. In Dinajpur, the 18-party alliance yesterday called a daylong hartal in the district also for Sunday protesting Thursday’s attack on the alliance men. Mukur Chowdhury, general secretary of district BNP, on behalf of the opposition alliance, announced the shutdown at a press briefing at the district BNP office around 11am. At least 50 people were injured as the opposition men clashed with the police and ruling party activists near the Government College intersection on Thursday noon. In Bogra, district BNP called for a 36hour hartal beginning 6am on Sunday demanding the inclusion of BNP leaders in the electoral roll. l


Case filed, males who fled home begin to return n Our Correspondent, Lalmonirhat A case was lodged accusing 53 individuals including three Jamaat-Shibir activists and 50 unnamed others for vandalising and looting shops, houses belonging to the local Hindu community at Ghoshpara of Jongra union in Patgram, Lalmonirhat on Thursday night. On behalf the community, Dhanjit Ghosh Tapos lodged the case with Patgram police station, which claimed to have been conducting drives to arrest the criminals. Meanwhile, the males from at least 23 Hindu families, who had fled their homes during the attack on Thursday morning, the last day of the opposition BNP-led alliance enforced 71-hour nationwide blockade, have started to return following the local administration’s assurance and deployment of additional police. Police sources said activists of Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami and its students’ wing, Shibir vandalised and looted five shops and two houses in the village belonging to Hindus on Thursday morning. At least 12 women and children were assaulted by the gang. One of the villagers, Subhas Chan-

dra Ghosh said: “We are innocent villagers, and we are not involved with any political activities and had no enmity with anyone, but we were being victimised.” “I do not know what will happen in the future,” he said. Another villager, Shilpi Rani Ghosh said: “We are still going through a panicky situation, as the area is full of Jamaat-Shibir activists and they always consider Hindus as enemies.” “Jamaat-Shibir members here in the village would become more agitated, if police arrest them,” she said. Upazila administration, police and local social elites, however, assured all kinds of support to the Hindu community, said the police. The HRDF-in charge of Investigation Unit of Ain O Salish Kendra (ASK), Abu Ahmed Faijul Kabir told the Dhaka Tribune: “We have sent urgent letters to the Inspector General of Police (IGP) on Thursday, urging to arrest the culprits and take initiatives, so that males, who fled their homes can return home.” Ain O Salish Kendra expressed its deep concern over the attack on the minority community of the village, he said adding an ASK team would visit the spot as soon as possible. l

Different socio-cultural organisations form a human chain in front the National Press Club yesterday with a call to stop violence against women and minority people

Farmers worry as paddy prices fall but production costs hold up n UNB

Railway employees form a human chain in front of Lalmonirhat railway station yesterday, demanding quota system for dependants on railway staffers DHAKA TRIBUNE

Dependants demand quota in railway recruitment n Our Correspondent, Lalmonirhat The dependants of railway staffers in Lalmonirhat demanded proper implementation of the 30% quota in recruitment reserved for them and hinted at a “wider movement” to have their demands realised. They formed a human chain under the banner “Dependants of Bangladesh Railway Employees” in front of the town’s station building yesterday morning. Later, they submitted a memorandum to the director general of Bangladesh Railway through the divisional railway manager (west zone). There were over a hundred of par-

ticipants in the event organised by the Rangpur unit of Bangladesh Railway Sramik-Karmachari Posso Parishad. They alleged that despite an existing order of the railway for preferential recruitment of the children of its employees, it was not being adhered to because of a group of unscrupulous officials doing “brisk business” with the recruitment process. In this regard, Moniruzzaman Monir, convener of the central committee of the organisation, said they had plans for a central programme in Dhaka within a month or so, after organising division-level programmes in favour of the demand. l

Though the production cost of paddy has shot up by Tk35 per maund between the last and the current Aman season, there has been no corresponding increase in its selling price. The retail and wholesale prices of rice at district level has also increased by 20% and 30% respectively over the same period, indicating that it is the middlemen who are making the quick buck, leaving the growers’ with a meager and unsatisfactory profit margin, reports UNB. According to Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE), about 40% of the paddy harvest has been completed by now. Traders and millers at different districts said although their purchase price of per maund paddy was hovering over Tk750-800 just two weeks back, the current prices is no more than Tk730-750. Raihanul Alam, a rice-miller in Panchgarh, said the current price of paddy at growers’ level is even lower compared to the price fixed for government procurement. Food Planning and Monitoring Committee (FPMC) at the food ministry

on November 27 made an announcement that government would procure 200,000 metric tonnes of Aman rice at Tk30 per kilogram. The FPMC also claimed that farmers have to spend Tk17.02 on producing per kg of paddy this year while the production cost of rice is Tk25.42 per kg. M Shahadat Hossain, a farmer from Durgapur village in Rangpur sadar upazila, said: “I sold out BINA 7 which I had planted a bit earlier than Aman. I harvested it 20 days earlier and sold it at Tk800 per maund.” “The rest of the paddy in my fields is yet to be harvested. I planted Swarna in most of my lands, and some BRRI 11 and Kalijira that I will harvest in a few days. But the price is a bit dull right now, Tk740 per maund,” he added. Shahadat said the diesel price is higher than the price previous year and the daily labour cost during this harvesting season has also increased by Tk100 per farm labourers. “The cost of growing paddy has increased, but the price has not increased accordingly,” he added. Bangladesh Krishak Samity President Morshed Ali said: “We observe that the government’s procurement decision

always comes at a time when the farmers sell out their harvests to traders at lower prices, incurring huge losses. So, it can be said the procurement drives by the government have been benefiting the traders instead of the farmers.” Besides, the volume of government procurement is pretty small to have any impact on the market, he noted. The DAE has already estimated that farmers have cultivated Aman in about 5.8m hectares of land this fiscal, exceeding the government’s target by 200,000 hectares beyond. The DAE fixed the production target at 13.276m tonnes this Aman season. Last year, the country harvested 12.897m tonnes of Aman rice from 5.6m hectares of land. According to the Department of Agricultural Marketing, rice price is ranged between Tk34-37 (Sawrna variety in Rangpur-Dhaka) and Tk46-52 (Miniket variety in Kushtia-Dhaka). According to National Food Policy Capacity Strengthening Programme, the retail and wholesale prices of coarse rice have marked a rise by 23.9% and 37.8% respectively in the city markets in the first half of November compared to the prices one year back. l

‘Rabbani Bahini’ chief jailed for one year n Our Correspondent, Lalmonirhat A mobile court yesterday sentence the chief of ‘Rabbani Bahini’ to one year of imprisonment for illegal drug peddling. Detective Branch of police arrested him from Khochabari area of the district town in the afternoon. After the arrest police produced

Golam Rabbani, 44, before a mobile court. Executive Magistrate of the mobile court Abul Kashem gave him the verdict. Assistant Superintendent of Police Mahfuzul Islam said there was an allegation that Rabbani along with cohorts had been running illegal drug trade in the locality for long.

Hundreds of people in the locality have been staging demonstration for the last few days, demanding arrest of the syndicate members. The local people also submitted a memorandum to Deputy Commissioner Habibur Rahman and urged him to take necessary steps to stop such illegal drug trading. l


BNP-backed panel bags key posts in Jhenaidah Bar Library polls n Our Correspondent, Jhenaidah The BNP-backed lawyers’ panel bagged key posts including president and secretary posts in the Bar Library Polls of the district. The opposition-backed panel titled Mashiur–Alam parishad bagged 11 positions while the Awami League-backed Akter-Nazrul parishad eight. The Election Commission said 250 of 255 voters cast their votes in the elections.

BNP-backed Ekramul Haque was elected as secretary with 122 votes while his nearest contestant Nazrul Islam of the AL-backed panel secured 121 votes A total of 38 candidates contested 19 positions. SM Mashiur Rahman of Bangladesh Nationalist Party was elected as president with 134 votes while his rival candidate Khan Akteruzzaman of the AL-backed panel got 112 votes. BNP-backed Ekramul Haque was elected as secretary with 122 votes while his nearest contestant Nazrul Islam of the AL-backed panel secured 121 votes. Akidul Islam and Safiul Alam were elected as assistant secretaries, Bikash Ghosh treasurer, Rashedul Alam literacy and library affairs secretary and Saiful Alam religious affairs secretary. Kazi Alaul Haque Alo, Bina Khatun, Enamul Haque Nilu, Asaduzzaman babu, Tipu Sultan, Abed Ali, Mir Sakhawat Hossain, Moniruzzaman Lal and Qamrul Abedin Sahin were elected members of the committee. l




Saturday, November 30, 2013

Mighty Teesta turning into a narrow channel Barrage construction upstream blamed miles of sandy char to reach the n Our Correspondent, Gaibandha through mainland to pursue their livelihoods. Teesta, the second biggest river in Gaibandha, is drying up quickly and the drastic fall in its water level is impacting on agriculture, communication systems, employment and ecology in the region. Officials of Bangladesh Water Development Board said the water level started falling sharply in September and now most of the river has dried up at an alarming rate, leading to a number of chars forming on the riverbed. “At present, one can cross the river by foot easily, which was unthinkable only a few years back,” said Abul Kashem, a resident of Horipur union under Sundarganj upazila. People living by the riverbanks attribute the present situation to the unilateral construction by India of a barrage at Gazoldoba over the Teesta, around 100km upstream of the Teesta Barrage Irrigation project (TBIP) at Dalia of Lalmonirhat district. Movement of water vessels has been suspended in all the routes of the river causing immense trouble to char dwellers wanting to reach the mainland. Over 20,000 people living in the unions Tarapur, Horipur, Belka, Chandpur, and Kapasia under Sundarganj Upazila, are being compelled to walk

“More than 200 boatmen of 30 boat routes connecting four upazilas under Kurigram and Gaibandha districts have become jobless,” said M Mazharul Islam, chairman of Horipur union. A number of anglers on the basins have also become unemployed, said Horikanta Kanta Das, an angler of Belka Union. Seeing no other way, many of the anglers had to take up other professions, he added. “Vast tracts of land are lying uncultivated for the lack of flow in the river,” said Satyen Sen, upazila agriculture officer. Thousands of people living in the char and the riverbank of the upazila have become jobless, as they have no work due to drying up of the river, said Waheduzzaman Sarker Badsha, chairman of the upazila. The jobless were now moving to Dhaka, Chittagong and other parts of the country in search of work, some even taking loans on high interest from the local moneylenders, he added. The char dwellers have urged the government to take up necessary measures to resume the navigability and water flow in the river and continue it all the year round by rolling on the water sharing treaty with India as early as possible. l

A farmer is busy in drying up tomatoes and spraying toxic chemicals to ripen them. The photo was taken at Wabda field in Godagari upazila under Rajshahi


Tiger enters human territory, locals fear sudden attack 2 ‘robbers’ lynched in Comilla n Our Correspondent, Barguna A Bengal tiger from Sundarbans entered human territory on Wednesday in Barguna’s Charmijan area and has disappeared into the area’s paddy fields, according to locals. Charmijan is located near the Bishkhali River which meets the Bay of Bengal through the mouth of Baleswar-Haringhata of India at 13km down of Patharghata upazila under the district. A sense of fear engulfs the inhabi-

tants as they could not yet confirm the tiger’s whereabouts. However, the locals were sure of the big cat’s presence after locating its paw marks. School going children were mostly panicked after the news spread and as a result many have refrained from going to school. Monika Rani, 34, a local of the area, said: “Children have stopped going to school. Even the inhabitants who are mostly day labourers fear coming out of the house.”

Headmaster of Keutola Government Primary School, Md Saidur Rahman Molla, said the attendance of students had been thin after the tiger came into our territory. Manna, a member of Tiger Team which is a local voluntary organisation, said: “At least 45 members of the organisation are searching for the tiger for the last three days. We did not find any new paw prints of the tiger, so it is assumed that the tiger is still in the area.” Kashrafi Bikash Chandra, assistant

reserve officer of the forest and range officer of Sharankhola range, said: “We have been trying force the tiger to come out from hiding by firing blanks.” He said: “The tiger is most definitely hiding inside the paddy fields of the area. We will keep trying until the tiger is found.” An expert on biodiversity of the Sundarbans, Harun Jomaddar, said: “Tigers roam around different areas as it is part of their nature. Probably the tiger is hiding because he is scared after seeing humans in the area.” l

n Tribune Desk Two suspected robbers were beaten to death and three others injured by villagers in two separate robbery incidents at Palakhal and Dheuapara villages in Barura upazila early yesterday. The deceased were identified as Abdul Motaleb, 25, and Abdul Baten, 28. Police said local people at Palakhal chased off a gang of robbers, numbering 7/8, while they were about to commit robbery at the village. At one stage,

they managed to catch two robbers and gave a merciless beating, leaving Abdul Motaleb dead on the spot and another injured, reports UNB. Meanwhile, a gang of robbers broke into the house of one Dr Abinash at Deuapara village in the upazila. As the house inmates screamed, locals came to their rescue and managed to catch three members of the gang after a chase. They gave them a severe thrashing, leaving Abdul Baten dead on the spot l

RU student, three others killed in road accidents n Tribune Report

A local Awami League leader collects nomination paper on behalf of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for Gopalganj constituency-3 FOCUS BANGLA

Four people, including a female student of Rajshahi University, were killed in separate road accidents that took place in Rajshahi and Chapainawabganj, Natore. The RU student was crushed under the wheels of an auto-rickshaw and another seriously injured in the university central gate area yesterday. Witnesses said Sabrina Jahan, a second year student of Sociology Department of Rajshahi University and a resident student of Begum Rokeya Hall, along with her friend Jebun Nahar Sumi was going to Binodpur Bazaar by rickshaw. While the three-wheeler arrived on

NEWS IN BRIEF One killed in Rajshahi clash over fishing

A man was killed and 10 others were injured in a clash between two rival groups over fishing in a water body in Baghmara upazila on Thursday night. Abdul Hamid, officer-in-charge of Baghmara police station, said Ashraful Islam, 35, son of Zabed Ali, resident of Shreepur village of the upazila, along with some fishermen went to the water body numbed Khoirar beel to catch fish in the evening. Guards of the water body rushed in and obstructed them. At one stage, both the groups equipped with weapons locked in a fierce clash. They exploded crude bombs, leaving 11 people, including Ashraful, injured. Ashraful succumbed to his injuries while being taken to Rajshahi Medical College Hospital. A case was filed in this connection. – UNB

Man jailed for 17 years in arms case in Barisal

A Barisal court on Thursday convicted a man and sentenced him to 17 years’ imprisonment for possessing firearms. The convict was identified as Shahid Haoladar, 26, son of Idris Haoladar, of Sobhan Miar Pole area in the city. According to the prosecution, a patrol team of the Rapid Action Battalion arrested Shahid in possession of a pistol and three rounds of bullet from Lakutia of the city on August 11, 2011. Later, Abdul Halim Hazra, deputy assistant director of RAB, filed a case with Kotwali police station while Sub-inspector Abul Khayer submitted a charge sheet against the accused on September 18.District special tribunal Judge Mohammad Habibur Rahman handed down the verdict. – UNB

Boro seeds distributed in Joypurhat

Bangladesh Agriculture Development Corporation has distributed 1,250 tonnes of Boro seeds in the five upazilas of Joypurhat to make the paddy cultivation a success. BADC official sources said of the total, 1,100 tonnes seeds were distributed through 110 dealers and 100 tonnes directly among the farmers at the rate of Tk 340 per bag (10 kg). Shafiul Alom, senior assistant director of BADC, said the local Agriculture Extension Department demanded 900 tonnes of Boro seeds for the district this year but BADC disbursed 1,250 tonnes of seeds. The BADC also distributed five tonnes of SL-8H super highbred seeds, 1,000 kg of pulse seeds, 1,500 kg of mustard seeds and 600 kg of various vegetable seeds among the farmers at fair prices. – BSS

Man found dead in Lakshmipur

Police recovered the body of an unidentified man at Nandia Para in Ramganj upazila yesterday. Police said after spotting the body near a brick kiln owned by upazila unit Awami League president Mohammad Shahajahan, locals informed police in the morning. Later, police recovered the body tied up with ropes and sent it to sadar hospital morgue for an autopsy. Mohamamd Jabedul Islam, officer-in-charge of Ramganj police station, said miscreants might have shot the victim to death and dumped the body. – UNB

the Rajshahi-Dhaka highway near the university main entrance, it collapsed on the road. Meantime, an auto-rickshaw coming from the opposite direction crushed Sabrina under its wheels. Sabrina and Sumi were rushed to Rajshahi Medical College Hospital while their conditions were deteriorating. The on-duty doctors at the hospital declared Sabrina dead. Sabrina was the daughter of Hamidur Rahman hailing from Kahalu upazila of Bogra district. RU Vice-Chancellor Prof Muhammad Mizanuddin and pro-Vice-Chancellor Prof Chowdhury Sarowar Jahan visited the infirmary and expressed their condolence for the victims.

Following the accident, agitated students of RU put up barricade on the Dhaka-Rajshahi highway around 1:15pm for an hour while police came to the scene and dispersed the agitators by charging baton which left some six students injured. RU Proctor Tariqul Hasan said the situation was under control. In Chapainawabganj, driver of a human hauler was killed as a tractor knocked down his vehicle at Barobhita in Gomostapur upazila yesterday morning. The deceased was identified as Nasir, 18, son of Asar Uddin of Shahbazpur of Shibganj upazila. Firoz Ahmed, officer-in-charge of Gomostapur police station, said a

sand-laden tractor hit the human hauler coming from the opposite direction, killing its driver Nasir, 18, son of Asar Uddin of Shahbazpur of Shibganj upazila on the spot. Two persons including a private car driver were killed in separate incidents in Natore in the morning Police said car driver Sujarul Islam, 32, of Hulhulia village under the district’s Shingra upazila, was killed on the spot when his Pabna-bound car turned turtle and fell into a roadside ditch at Daipara area around 6am. Abdul Wahab, 38, a labour of Natore Sugar Mills, sustained injuries when he fell down on baggas carrier of the mill around 8:30am. He was taken to Natore Sadar Hospita where he died. l




Egypt police fire tear gas as Islamists defy protest law n

Police fired tear gas on Friday at Islamists who demonstrated in Egypt, defying a new law banning unauthorised protests that has also angered activists following the arrest of a prominent blogger. The Muslim Brotherhood had vowed to go ahead regardless with the weekly protests it has organised after noon prayers ever since Islamist president Mohamed Morsi was overthrown in a July 3 military coup. Late on Thursday the interior ministry warned against unauthorised protests, after police detained prominent blogger Alaa Abdel Fattah, in a stark declaration of intent reminiscent of the autocratic rule of veteran strongman Hosni Mubarak, ousted in a popular uprising nearly three years ago. Police used tear gas against hundreds of Morsi’s supporters who protested in front of a presidential palace in Cairo, an AFP reporter said, adding that he also heard gunshots. Tear gas was also fired on dozens of Islamists in Cairo’s Mohandessin district and on a key road leading to the pyramids. Protesters retaliated by throwing stones and burning tyres in Mohandessin, officials said, adding that similar protests were also dispersed in the cities of Alexandria, Suez, Mahallah and Qena. Egypt’s army-installed government say the new law requires protest organ-

Egyptian protesters set fire to wood at Talaat Harb Square in downtown Cairo on during the first unauthorised protest on Nov 26 AFP isers to give three days’ written notice to the authorities before holding any demonstration. In addition, it also bans demonstrations in places of worship or starting from such places. The interior ministry on Thursday warned against “demonstrations that break the law without obtaining prior permission from security forces” and said “it will deal with these illegal activities firmly and decisively.” Interim president Adly Mansour issued the demonstration ban last Sunday and police have since enforced it, sometimes bloodily. On Thursday, an engineering stu-

Mortar attack at Damascus mosque kills 4 n AP, Damascus Syria’s state television reports that a mortar round has fallen in front of a historical mosque in the capital, Damascus, killing four people and wounding 26. It was not clear when the shells fell Friday, the Muslim day of prayer when people traditionally go to mosque at noon for the weekly sermon. The shelling near the Umayyad

Turkey, Iraqi Kurdistan sign landmark energy contracts n Reuters Turkey and Iraqi Kurdistan signed a package of landmark contracts earlier this week that will see the semi-autonomous region’s oil and gas exported via pipelines through Turkey, sources close to the deal told Reuters on Friday. The sources said the deals were signed during Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani’s three hour-long meeting with Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday. The move is likely to further infuriate Baghdad, which claims the sole authority to manage Iraqi oil and which said late on Thursday that any energy deal with Kurdistan would be “an encroachment on the sovereignty of Iraq.”

AFP, Cairo

dent was killed during an Islamist demonstration at Cairo university, health officials said. To the anger of secular supporters of Morsi’s overthrow, police have taken action against all demonstrations, not just those organised by the ousted president’s Islamist backers. Activists say the ban is hypocritical as the army justified its “coup” as a response to mass demonstrations across the country against Morsi’s turbulent single year in power. Pro-democracy groups have been particularly incensed by the arrest of Abdel Fatah, a prominent Morsi opponent. l

Saturday, November 30, 2013

The Turkish Energy Ministry declined to comment. Crude flow in the KRG’s new pipeline will start very soon, and will link up with the 40 inch-line of the existing Kirkuk-Ceyhan pipeline to be exported to world markets. The state-backed Turkish Energy Company (TEC), which Ankara set up to operate in northern Iraq, has also signed a contract to operate in thirteen exploration blocks, in about half of those it is teaming up with US giant ExxonMobil. The contracts also envisage the building of a new oil pipeline and a gas pipeline, aimed to help the region’s oil exports to climb to 1 million bpd by 2015. The gas flow is likely to start by early 2017. l

Turkey court brands swimming goggles ‘weapons’ n AFP, Istanbul A Turkish court has ruled that swimming goggles and other protective equipment used by protesters during this year’s mass street demonstrations were “weapons,” local media reported on Friday. Demonstrators armed themselves with homemade gear such as masks made of plastic bottles, motorbike helmets and goggles to protect themselves from tear gas fired by riot police during the protests that gripped the country in June.

But an Istanbul court ruled Thursday that such items could be classified as weapons in a case against 23 people who joined the action against government plans to build on the city’s Gezi park. It said that the suspects had the clear intention of invading the park, clashing with police and destroying public property. “They had not gone to the Gezi Park to swim, since there is no swimming pool there,” newspapers quoted the court ruling as saying. l

18 executed in Iraq after being taken away by uniformed men

n AFP Baghdad

The bodies of 18 people kidnapped hours earlier by men in army uniforms were found abandoned north of Baghdad on Friday, the latest troubling sign of worsening violence in Iraq. The killings come amid a surge in violence that has included multiple attacks with victims snatched from their homes, only for their corpses to be found later in scenes eerily recalling the worst of Iraq’s gruesome 2006-07 sectarian war. Early Friday, authorities discovered the bodies of 18 men, including two tribal chiefs, four policemen and an army major, dumped in farmland near the town of Tarmiyah, just north of Baghdad. All of the men had been shot in the head and chest, two police officers and a medical source said. The kidnappers, wearing military uniform and travelling in what appeared to be army vehicles, had abducted the men in the early hours of Friday. They told the victims’ families that they were suspects in a variety of investigations who had to be taken away for questioning. Their bodies were found hours later, the sources said. Recent violence worsened sharply after security forces stormed a Sunni protest camp in northern Iraq in April, sparking clashes in which dozens of people died. More than 6,000 people have been killed so far this year, according to an AFP tally based on reports from security and medical officials. l


Mosque in the old quarter of Damascus came 10 days after a mortar shell hit its wall, causing casualties. Dozens of shells have struck the historic city center and surrounding areas in the past two weeks, launched from rebel-held neighborhoods on the outskirts. Mortar shells, many homemade, are known to be imprecise so it’s not possible to determine whether the rebels fire them randomly or at specific targets. l

Three Libyan soldiers wounded in new Benghazi attack n AFP, Benghazi Three Libyan soldiers have been seriously wounded in a new attack in the eastern city of Benghazi after deadly clashes with jihadist group Ansar al-Sharia, a security official said Friday. “Unidentified men fired a machinegun at a patrol on Syria Avenue in Benghazi, wounding three troops” late Thursday, the official told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity. Fadia al-Barghathi, a spokeswoman at the city’s Al-Jala hospital, confirmed that three seriously wounded soldiers had been brought in.

German cop arrested over cannibalism website murder

n AFP, Berlin

A German police officer has been arrested on suspicion of murdering a man whom he met on an Internet site for cannibalism fetishists, authorities said Friday. The 55-year-old had confessed to slashing the throat of his willing victim and then cutting his body into small pieces and burying them in his garden, police said. But there was no evidence that the suspect, identified by media as police officer Detlev G. of the eastern state of Saxony, had eaten any of the body parts of his victim, prosecutors said. The victim, a 59-year-old man from Hanover, Lower Saxony, had “since his youth fantasised about being murdered and eaten,” Dresden police chief Dieter Kroll told a press conference. When the Hanover man, a business consultant, went missing, police began a search and weeks later tracked him down using his electronic communications with the suspected killer, whom he met on November 4. “They did not know each other personally until then,” Dresden head of criminal investigations Maik Mainda told the press conference, saying they had extensive email, SMS and telephone contact since October to arrange their fatal date. l

Three soldiers were killed earlier Thursday when the army clashed with Ansar al-Sharia militants on the final day of a three-day strike in protest against militias. The strike was sparked by a Monday shootout between jihadists and the army that left seven people dead and 50 wounded. Another soldier was killed in a drive-by shooting in broad daylight Thursday as he left a cafe with a colleague who escaped unscathed. Since dictator Moammar Gadhafi was ousted and killed in a 2011 revolution that began in Benghazi, the transitional authorities in the North African nation have been plagued by security problems. l

Tribesmen lead their camels through the sand dunes of the Liwa desert, 220 kms west of Abu Dhabi, on November 23

EU won’t accept Russia ‘veto’ over east Europe

Schoolchildren face expulsion in Bosnian language row

n AFP, Vilnius

n Reuters

The European Union will not accept a Russia “veto” or any other meddling in its ties with other nations, European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso said Friday. “The times of limited sovereignty are over in Europe,” Barroso told a news conference after ex-Soviet state Ukraine turned its back on a major trade and political deal with the EU after economic pressure from Moscow. Speaking at the same news confer-

ence, EU Council president Herman Van Rompuy said the 28-nation bloc’s offer to sign the landmark deals with Ukraine “is still on the table.” Though there was no signing at the two-day summit as had been hoped, “we hope that sooner or later Ukraine will be ready,” he said. “We will not give in to external pressure, not the least from Russia.” Barroso stressed that “all stand to gain. Our neighbours and their neighbours.” “It is not against someone. Because I do not believe someone should be against democracy, prosperity, stability.” l

Russia seeks 9-year sentence for Bolshoi dancer n AFP, Moscow Russian prosecutors sought Friday a nine-year jail sentence for Bolshoi ballet dancer Pavel Dmitrichenko over his alleged mastermind role in an acid attack that nearly blinded the troupe’s artistic director. The prosecution also asked the court to sentence Dmitrichenko’s suspected associate Yury Zarutsky to 10 years for flinging the sulphuric acid in the face of Sergei Filin on

January 17, a crime that shocked Russia and scandalised the historic theatre. The trial of Dmitrichenko, Zarutsky and a third associate named Andrei Lipatov – suspected of driving the attacker to Filin’s home – has captivated the ballet world and revealed deep frictions within the legendary theatre. “The accused are all guilty and deserve no leniency,” RIA Novosti quoted Filin’s lawyer Tatyana Stukalova as telling the court. l

Several hundred children from the Serb-controlled part of Bosnia faced expulsion from school on Friday after camping out in Sarajevo for three months in protest at being denied lessons in their native Bosnian language. The protest has revived debate over Bosnia’s highly devolved education system, split along ethnic lines between Serbs, Croats and Muslim Bosniaks since the end of the country’s 1992-95 war. Muslim Bosniaks in two towns in Bosnia’s autonomous Serb Republic withdrew their children from school in early September, demanding they be taught language, history and geography classes in their own tongue. Bosniaks are a minority within the Serb Republic, one of two autonomous regions created under a 1995 peace deal that split power in Bosnia along ethnic lines after a war that killed 100,000 people. As such, they study according to the Serb curriculum but are entitled to Bosnian language, history and geography lessons in schools where they make up a certain proportion of the class. The protesting Bosniaks say this is unfair on their children, who do not qualify for the Bosnian classes because their numbers fall below the threshold. “This is a system based on total assimilation,” said Muhizin Omerovic, a Muslim Bosniak parent taking part in the protest

outside the office of Bosnia’s international overseer. “We Bosniaks don’t exist either as a nation or a culture.” Authorities in the Serb Republic have offered to organize the Bosnian classes outside regular school hours, but the parents said this was not enough. “We are determined to fight to the end because this is a long-standing problem,” Omerovic said. “We cannot wait for another 50 years for a solution.” The three official languages in Bosnia Bosnian, Serbian and Croatian - differ little, but are one of many strict ethnic identifiers in the deeply divided country. History classes in schools vary widely between the three communities. The children have been threatened with expulsion due to their lengthy absence from school. Friday marks the latest deadline for them to return. The issue has become highly politicized ahead of a parliamentary election next year. Western officials who are still involved in Bosnian governance say they can only mediate between the rival parties but cannot intervene. “At the root cause of all this is the fact that in Bosnia-Herzegovina there are three ethnically colored curricula,” said Trefor Williams, an education official at the Organisation of Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) which is trying to help reform the school system. l


UN to seek more aid for Philippines typhoon displaced n AFP, Manila The United Nations is to seek more international aid to shelter and give temporary jobs to millions displaced by the Philippines’ deadliest typhoon in history, officials said Friday. “Providing shelter and rebuilding lives is an urgent priority,” said UN resident and humanitarian coordiNator Luiza Carvalho, laying out the state of dozens of towns and cities three weeks after they were ravaged by Super Typhoon Haiyan. “There are many needs in the aftermath of the typhoon and we require support to be able to put people back on their feet. Families require safety, shelter and work to sustain a decent life,” she added. The spokeswoman for the local UN office, Orla Fagan, told a news conference donors had forked out $164 million, or just under half of the initial UN humanitarian appeal for $301 million. The earlier appeal was launched on November 12, four days after Haiyan unleashed powerful 315 kilometre an hour (195 mph) winds and giant storm surges in the central Philippines. At least 5,598 were killed and 1,759 others are missing, mainly in the predominantly poor islands of Samar and Leyte, according to a government tally. l



China sends jets to counter incusion n AP, Beijing China on Friday scrambled fighter jets to monitor a dozen US and Japanese military aircraft which entered its new air defence zone, state media said. Beijing’s announcement last weekend of the air defence identification zone, which covers islands at the centre of a dispute between China and Japan, has raised tensions in the region. The report indicated that Japan and the US are continuing to disregard Beijing’s demands that aircraft submit flight plans when traversing the zone in the East China Sea or face unspecified “defensive emergency measures.”

“Several combat aircraft were scrambled to verify the identities” of US and Japanese aircraft entering the air defence zone, the official Xinhua news agency said, quoting air force spokesman Shen Jinke. The Chinese aircraft, which included at least two fighter jets, identified two US surveillance aircraft and 10 Japanese aircraft including an F-15 warplane, Shen said. Shen said the air force had a mission to monitor foreign aircraft inside the zone “throughout the entire process, with timely identification.” Japan and South Korea both said Thursday they had disregarded the ADIZ, showing a united front after US

B-52 bombers also entered the area. But Beijing is facing considerable internal pressure to assert itself. China’s state media called Friday for “timely countermeasures without hesitation” if Japan violates the zone. Washington has security alliances with both Tokyo and Seoul, and analysts say that neither China nor Japan – the world’s second- and third-biggest economies, and major trading partners of each other – want to engage in armed conflict. The Global Times newspaper, which generally takes a more nationalistic tone than China’s government, said in an editorial Friday: “We should carry

out timely countermeasures without hesitation against Japan when it challenges China’s newly declared ADIZ. “If Tokyo flies its aircraft over the zone, we will be bound to send our plane to its ADIZ.” The paper, which is close to the ruling Communist party, said: “We are willing to engage in a protracted confrontation with Japan.” But it shied away from threatening Washington, which sent giant Stratofortress bombers inside the zone, issuing an unmistakable message. “If the US does not go too far, we will not target it in safeguarding our air defence zone,” the paper said. l

Japan-China disputed islands l The archipelago consists of five

islands and three reefs

l Japan, China and Taiwan claim them;

they are controlled by Japan and form part of Okinawa prefecture l Japanese businessman Kunioki Kurihara owned three of the islands but sold them to the Japanese state in September 2012 l The islands were also the focus of a major diplomatic row between Japan and China in 2010

China’s position l Islands have been part of its territory

since ancient times, serving as important fishing grounds administered by the province of Taiwan l Taiwan was ceded to Japan in the Treaty of Shimonoseki in 1895, after the Sino-Japanese war l When Taiwan was returned in the Treaty of San Francisco, China says the islands - as part of it - came with it l China also cites the Cairo and Potsdam declarations, under which Japan was ordered to return territory taken from China


Saturday, November 30, 2013

Chinese paper says Islamists seek to ban TV, singing n Reuters Islamists in China’s far western region of Xinjiang are seeking to ban television, singing and other forms of entertainment, a newspaper said on Friday, adding that “religious extremism” was a disaster facing the area. China has stepped up its rhetoric against what it says is a threat the country faces from Islamist militants since an incident last month in which a vehicle ploughed into tourists on the edge of Beijing’s Tiananmen Square, killing the three people in the car and two bystanders. China called the crash an attack carried out by people plotting holy war, and has reacted angrily to suggestions that it was because of frustration and anger over government repression of the region’s Muslims. In a front-page piece in the official

Xinjiang Daily, Yusufujiang Maimaiti, the head of the region’s employment bureau, said “forces” were furthering their “evil aims” by seeking to foist extremist beliefs on the region’s Muslims. “Religious extremist forces... don’t allow people to sing or dance, they incite them to disobey the government, to not use marriage certificates and ID cards. They prevent them from watching television, films, and listening to the teachings of patriotic religious leaders,” he wrote. He did not identify the extremists but said they were “distorting and falsifying” religious doctrine with a creed of opposing anyone who was different from them culturally or religiously. “Religious extremism is the biggest disaster facing the development and longterm peace and stability of Xinjiang,” he added. “Our battle against extremism is undeniable and unavoidable.” l

New Pakistan army chief takes command n AFP, Rawalpindi General Raheel Sharif on Friday formally took over as the head of Pakistan’s army, the most powerful position in the troubled military-dominated nation which is battling a homegrown Taliban insurgency Sharif, named chief of the army staff on Wednesday, took charge from predecessor General Ashfaq Kayani at a ceremony at military headquarters in Rawalpindi. He takes over as the nuclear-armed state faces a daunting array of challenges – the six-year Taliban campaign which has claimed thousands of lives, vexed relations with India and the

winding-down of the 12-year Nato mission in neighbouring Afghanistan. Sharif, a veteran infantry commander, was little known outside military circles before his promotion to army chief, but analysts say he is a dedicated soldier with little interest in politics. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif passed over two more senior generals to appoint his namesake, who is no relation, and will be hoping to avoid a repeat of events the last time he named an army chief – General Pervez Musharraf overthrew him in a coup in 1999. Pakistan has seen three coups and been ruled for more than half its 66-year history by the military. The armed forces still retain a powerful influence. l

Earthquake near Iran nuclear plant kills 8 n AFP, Tehran

Nato probes Afghan US drone strike kills two in Pakistan airstrike that ‘killed child’ n

A 5.7 magnitude earthquake on the Gulf coast near Iran’s sole nuclear power plant killed eight people and injured 190 on Thursday, emergency response chief Hassan Qadami told state media. “So far, there are seven dead and 30 injured receiving hospital treatment,” the official IRNA news agency quoted Qadami as saying. However, an official said the temblor had “not created any problem for the activities of the power plant” at Bushehr, where Iran has its Russian-built reactor. The quake’s epicentre was near Borazjan, around 60 kilometres (35 miles) from Bushehr. The media said the quake had destroyed around 250 homes and businesses, while Dashtestan provincial Governor Alireza Khorani also spoke of damaged houses and electricity pylons. Iran stands on several seismic fault lines. In April, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck southeastern Iran and neighbouring Pakistan, killing 40 people. A massive quake in December 2003 struck the southern city of Bam, killing 26,000 people and destroying its ancient mud-built citadel. Iran’s Arab neighbours across the Gulf have often raised concern over the reliability of the Bushehr plant and the risks of radioactive leaks in case of a major quake. But Iran and Russia insist it respects international standards under the supervision of the UN nuclear watchdog. l

US-led Nato forces in Afghanistan on Friday vowed to investigate an airstrike that President Hamid Karzai said killed a two-year-old boy, as acrimony deepened over a deal to allow US troops to stay in the country after 2014. Civilian casualties have been one of the most sensitive issues of the 12-year military intervention in Afghanistan, and Karzai warned that the latest incident threatened the proposed bilateral security agreement (BSA) with Washington. The Nato coalition acknowledged reports of the boy’s death and said it “deeply regrets any civilian casualties” caused by Thursday’s airstrike in the southern province of Helmand, a hotbed of the Taliban insurgency.

Muslims tried to decapitate UK soldier

n AFP, London

Two Muslim converts attempted to hack off a British soldier’s head with knives and a meat cleaver in broad daylight on a London street, a court heard as their long-awaited murder trial opened Friday. Michael Adebolajo, 28, and Michael Adebowale, 22, are accused of murdering 25-year-old Lee Rigby as he walked to his barracks in Woolwich, south London, in May. The two defendants, both Britons of Nigerian descent, deny murder. As the trial opened at London’s Old Bailey court, prosecutor Richard Whittam said the pair had run Rigby over with a car, rendering him unconscious, before attacking him with the knives in a “cowardly and callous murder.” l

AFP, Miranshah

n AFP, Kabul

Karzai, whose troubled relationship with the US erupted again in public last week over the security deal negotiations, has often used civilian deaths caused by Nato to berate the international coalition for its failures in Afghanistan. Karzai “strongly condemns the airstrike by Nato forces on a house which killed one child and wounded two women,” a statement from his office said late Thursday. “This attack shows American forces are not respecting Afghan lives... As long as unilateral acts and atrocities continue by American forces on our people, we won’t sign this BSA.” The strike was launched from an unmanned drone and hit the village of Faqiran in Helmand on Thursday morning, the statement said. l

Suicide bomber wounds MP in Afghan capital n Reuters A suicide bomber wounded a prominent anti-Taliban Afghan legislator and his bodyguards in an attack in Kabul on Friday, intelligence officials said. The bomber detonated his device inside the house of Hameedullah Tokhi, a member of parliament for Zabul province, and wounded Tokhi and four of his bodyguards, the officials said. It was not immediately clear who was behind the attack, which came as President Hamid Karzai deliberates over an agreement allowing Nato forc-

es to stay in the country beyond 2014. Many Afghans, including his closest advisers and a gathering of 3,000 prominent Afghans, have urged him to sign it. But Karzai keeps adding extra conditions to the text and has said he does not want to sign until after elections scheduled for April. Diplomats from the United States have been unusually blunt, warning that the delay risks leading to a complete US withdrawal from the insurgency-plagued country, where Western troops and national security forces have been fighting Taliban militants for the past 12 years. l

A US drone strike targeting a militant compound killed at least two suspected insurgents in a restive Pakistani tribal region near the Afghan border on Friday, officials said. The strike took place in the Anghar area, 10 kilometres (six miles) south of Miranshah, the main town of North Waziristan tribal region, a stronghold for Taliban and Al-Qaeda linked militants. “A US drone fired two missiles on a

A wrestling diplomat from Japan challenges a Sudanese Nuba opponent for the sixth and final time on Friday, hoping for his first win. But even if he loses yet again, Yasuhiro Murotatsu says he will still have secured a victory of sorts, helping to unify a divided and war-torn land. The Nuba Mountains of South Kordofan state are home to a linguistically and religiously diverse group of people collectively known as “Nuba.” Their form of wrestling, practised for thousands of years, is completely different from the iconic national sport of sumo in Murotatsu’s homeland. Wrestling is central to the Nuba’s farm-

based society despite a more modern form of combat that has devastated the region for more than two years. Non-Arab rebels from South Kordofan have joined with other insurgents from Darfur, in Sudan’s west, in rising against the Arab-dominated Khartoum government which they complain has marginalised the regions. Japan’s embassy says Murotatsu was the first foreigner ever to set foot onto the sandy Sudanese wrestling pitch to take on the country’s toughest. In a pre-match interview, the 33-year-old told AFP he sees his participation as part of an effort to help bring the multi-ethnic and multi-religious Muslim-majority country together through sport.

identified as “Punjabi Taliban,” from Pakistan’s central Punjab province. “One of them, Aslam alias Yaseen, is linked with attacks on Pakistan army headquarters in Rawalpindi and another attack on (the) naval base in Karachi,” the security official told AFP. In May 2011, a group of heavily armed militants besieged Pakistan’s naval air base in Karachi, destroying two USmade P-3C Orion surveillance aircraft, an attack that took 17 hours to repel and left 10 military personnel dead. l

India’s Tejpal briefly arrested and bailed n Agencies Prominent Indian journalist Tarun Tejpal, accused of sexual assault by a colleague, has been briefly arrested at an airport in westen Goa state before being granted a new interim bail until Saturday morning. A young female journalist has accused Tejpal, the editor-in-chief of investigative magazine ‘Tehelka’, of assaulting her twice in a hotel elevator during a conference in Goa this month. On Friday, a Goa court granted Tejpal an interim bail until Saturday 10 am local time, the local NDTV reported. He had earlier been granted a few hours interim bail which ended at 2.30pm local time. Tejpal was at Goa’s Dabolim airport at around 5.10 pm when the brief arrest was made. Tejpal has flip-flopped in his statements about the incident. He apologised but later said the accusations were false. The powerful journalist was asked to appear before the investigating officer on Thursday for interrogation. But, after failing to do so, a court in Goa asked Te-

Japan’s wrestling diplomat in final Sudan bout! n AFP, Khartoum

militant compound, killing two suspected militants and wounding two others,” a senior security official told AFP. Another security official also confirmed the attack and casualties that took place after midnight (1900 Thursday GMT). The identities of those killed in the strike were not immediately known but they appeared to be of Central Asian origin, the official said. A third security official in Miranshah said two Taliban fighters were wounded in the fresh attack and were

“This is my strongest message I want to send to make Sudanese people more unified, because now Sudan is at a very sensitive stage,” he said. Murotatsu, known as “Muro” to local wrestling fans, says the Sudanese sport is similar to more widely known freestyle wrestling in which he competed at junior high school. Since February he has wrestled in special “friendship” matches during the regular Friday evening card in Haj Yousef, a poor Khartoum neighbourhood of mud-brick houses. Murotatsu, a political officer at the embassy, is a slightly built bespectacled man who on Friday evening will face a teenaged opponent, Saleh Omar Bol Tia Kafi, for the third consecutive time. l

Indian writer Tarun Tejpal jpal to appear by 2:30 pm on Friday. On Thursday night, police officials conducted a search of Tejpal’s residence in New Delhi. Shoma Chaudhury, the managing editor of Tehelka, to whom the victim had emailed an account of the incident, stepped down from her position on Thursday. The victim had earlier not


filed a case with the Goa police. The police had filed an FIR (First Information Report) without any statement from the victim but she later filed a report. Tejpal was listed as one of Asia’s 50 most powerful communicators in 2001 by Asiaweek, while the Guardian newspaper ranked him among the 20 who constitute India›s new elite in 2007. l

Protesters break into Thai army compound n Reuters Anti-government protesters briefly forced their way into the compound of Thailand’s army headquarters on Friday in a dramatic escalation of citywide demonstrations seeking to topple Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra. Protesters burst into the army base Bangkok’s historic quarter, waving flags and blowing whistles. In another district, about 1,000 people massed outside Yingluck’s ruling party headquarters, shouting “get out.” The invasion of army headquarters deepened a conflict broadly pitting

the urban middle class against the mostly rural supporters of Yingluck and her brother, Thaksin Shinawatra, a former prime minister who was ousted in a 2006 coup and who remains central to Thailand’s eight years of on-off turmoil. The demonstrators left the headquarters peacefully after a few hours and late on Friday, protest leader Suthep Thaugsuban told his supporters to increase the pressure and target main state buildings on Sunday, including the headquarters of city and police, four ministries and Government House, Yingluck’s offices. l




Saturday, November 30, 2013

Letters to

the Editor


Living wage is a good target


he Swedish company, H&M, which is the world’s second-biggest clothing retailer, has pledged to pay a living wage to 850,000 textile workers in 750 factories around the world by 2018. It is starting a pilot project to support factory owners at two textile factories in Bangladesh and one in Cambodia to enable them to adopt a fair living wage for workers by the end of 2014. It has also announced its intention to roll this out to cover all the factories that supply its stores by 2018. There is no set definition of a living wage, but typically it is based on a formula that seeks As many basic costs to go further than the legal minimum wage by taking into such as rent for account the amounts needed to accommodation are provide minimum acceptable increasing faster than living standards. inflation, this process, As many basic costs such which is based on as rent for accommodation are improving industrial increasing faster than inflation, dialogue, can clearly this process, which is based on benefit workers improving industrial dialogue, can clearly benefit workers. The company says it believes it will also benefit as paying more to factories to adopt a living wage would not push up the price of its goods, because productivity and quality would also improve. By announcing its intention to roll out this programme to cover all the factories that supply its stores by 2018, the company has taken a bold initiative to address long-term problems. This commitment is a positive step towards supporting mature industrial relations in the RMG sector. Other brands and factory owners should follow it closely and seek to emulate its intended benefits.

The power of the sun November 25

We are neglecting to make better use of the sun as a source of energy in our country. Just as we can light a paper on fire merely by the use of a magnifying glass, in the same way, we can use solar power to create electricity, say, by focusing the rays through a magnifying glass onto a copper plate, but proper research is first needed. If we can harness the power of the sun, which is a primary source of fire and light, it can prove to make our nation prosperous. Plus, it’s an inexpensive way to create electricity. Ours is a poor country, which is why we must think of easy and cheaper means to produce electricity. To this end, government support is needed. Md Eliwas Mollah

November 23

Banks pay scale faces new hurdle November 24 Md Shaikh Russel How do Basic Bank, Teletalk, PGCBL, PWD and other nationalised institutes get their salary, and under which law? asad Md Shaikh Russel: All these so-called laws have been created by our prudent Secretaries. Fahad Services (Reorganisation and Conditions) Act, 1975. Section 5 (1) permitted the government to allow SPS. Read the act, please.

BGB, Awami League, BNP men among 6 dead November 26

Tapping into the potential of wind energy


t has been recently reported that the cabinet committee on public purchase has approved the plan to set up the country’s largest wind-based power project in Anwara, Chittagong. Given that wind power is one of the cheapest clean energy options, this is a highly welcome initiative. With increasing economic development, Bangladesh now faces an accelerating demand for energy. The country is currently almost exclusively dependent on fossil fuel to generate power and we also import a significant amount of energy from abroad. Not only is this economically unsustainable, since it costs us a large amount of foreign exchange every year, it is also harmful for the environment. The average speed of Wind energy on the other wind in Bangladesh is hand provides an alternative 2-6 metres/second, way to generate power that is which makes us both economically and enviideal candidates to ronmentally viable. We can also generate wind energy learn valuable lessons from other Asian countries such as China, Taiwan, Indonesia, Japan and South Korea who have invested heavily in wind power in recent years. In fact, China has more the doubled its wind power capacities in the last ten years. The average speed of wind in Bangladesh is 2-6 metres/second, which makes us ideal candidates to generate wind energy. Moreover, experts have posited that if proper investments are made in wind power, Bangladesh can become a net energy exporter. We have editorialised before on the need to integrate smart climate strategies into our economic development plan. Successful utilisation of wind power can make a significant impact in this regard. What is now needed is a combined effort from policymakers and the private sector to prioritise investment in wind power to ensure that our energy future is secure, sustainable and clean.

Again we are witnessing the politics of killing, vandalising, torching vehicles in the name of blockade or hartal. We are commoners who want to move on without any fear, go to our workplaces without any panic, send our children to the exam hall without any tension, live in our homes without hearing the blast of cocktail bombs going off, and cast our votes independently. Please, we are requesting both parties to resolve this ongoing political unrest. Lutfor Rahman

Government to introduce genetically-modified cotton

November 23 As a cotton farmer from India growing Bt Cotton since 2003, I vouch for the merits of Bt technology. Besides Heliothis (American boll worms), BG2 Bt Cotton controls spotted boll worms and pink boll worms. One of the major reasons for cotton yield reduction is due to the damage caused to the flowers, squares and bolls. As Bt Cotton protects the plant from these boll worms, boll retention rate of Bt Cotton is relatively higher in Bt Cotton, which ultimately translates in to higher yield. This is my personal experience as a cotton farmer. In addition there are other advantages too, such as drastic reduction in pesticide usage, preservation of non-target insect predators, like the lady bird beetle, spider, etc which feed on the sucking pest, and so on. I wish my Bangladeshi farmer friends happy farming. I congratulate the Bangladesh government for adopting a farmer-friendly policy. VKV Ravichandran


Knew it. Hasina Rahman Why can’t they leave it alone? Naheed Kamal Don’t find it attractive! :| Ehsanul Haque Nitol

Terrorism by any other name November 24

Then, what else they can do? Hasina Rahman This nation seems to be everyone’s to burn. There is no democracy here, friends. Anjan Kumar Deb BAL must learn to hold fair elections. By similar logic, Chhatra League’s activities are also terrorism. Ahnaf Saber If they understood, would they be doing the things they do? Waziuddin Chowdhury

November 19

US for safeguarding RMG workers’ rights in Bangladesh

The days are long past in this country when the people used to determine what was what. But now they have completely surrendered that authority to Khaleda and Hasina. People have taken their seats in the gallery and their only function is to cheer on this or that lady. nds

Of course the US government is all for it. US buyers are all for it too (verbally) but the question remains whether US buyers are willing to pay an extra pence for it in real life. That is what matters at the end of the day. Ahnaf Saber

The people know what counts as a fair election

November 23






ACROSS 1 Oppressive ruler (6) 4 Ply the needle (3) 7 Banishment (5) 8 Be eager (6) 11 Boy (3) 12 Be in readiness (4) 13 Satellite (4) 15 Weapon (5) 16 Soft sweet (5) 20 Fitting (4) 23 Fertile soil (4) 24 Slender stick (3) 25 Exact satisfaction for (6) 26 Perfect (5) 27 Female swan (3) 28 Recently (6)

Dhanmondi Lake development scheme put off again

DOWN 1 Melts, as snow (5) 2 Stir violently (7) 3 Swarm (4) 4 Airtight grain store (4) 5 Dash (4) 6 Marry (3) 9 Plant juice (3) 10 Filled pastry (3) 14 Wealthy (7) 17 Spanish nobleman (3) 18 Prevent from speaking (3) 19 Very hard mineral (5) 20 Fashion (4) 21 Paradise (4) 22 Lofty (4) 24 Tear (3)

How to solve Sudoku: Fill in the blank spaces with the numbers 1 – 9. Every row, column and 3 x 3 box must contain all nine digits with no number repeating.




Saturday, November 30, 2013


The winds of change n FS Aijazuddin


Is Cox’s Bazar getting its due?








Half a world away


n Niaz Alam

t is safe to assume that few people have visited both the world’s longest beach at Cox’s Bazar and the town of Rio Grande in southern Brazil, home to the beach called Praia do Cassino, which also claims the same title. Not having been to either, unless you count driving past, I am reliant on the internet for the disputable geographical facts and can only say they both look very inviting on Google Earth. With the World Cup and Olympics heading to Brazil, the municipal burghers of Rio Grande will have plenty of opportunities to boost their beach. Uruguay, with its soon to be expected rush of legalised cannabis tourists, is relatively nearby (Montevideo is roughly 600km away which is less than a third the distance to Rio de Janeiro), so prepare to see its beach length claims discussed more widely. This should not dishearten patriotic Bangladeshis. The Olympics will one day move on and Cox’s Bazar will still be under 400 minutes flying time from nearly half the world’s population. In any case, it is a wonder of the world that such a small land mass as Bangladesh should boast great rivers, long beaches, and the unique solitude and World Heritage site of the Sunderbans. Keen surfers aside, the people with the most interest in visiting both beaches are probably located among the good citizens of Cox’s Bazar. If any of them are planning a fact finding visit to discuss town twinning arrangements, I’m sure there’ll be a steady queue. All of which is another way of bringing up the awkward reality that Bangladesh is not talked about as much abroad as the size of its population (eighth highest in the world) warrants.

Yes, I know that, to misquote Life of Brian, readers of this newspaper will have plenty of answers to the question of what has Bangladesh ever done for the world? Its peaceful foreign policy and supply of troops to United Nations programs is admired and the achievements of world renowned NGOs like Brac and Grameen are widely applauded and emulated.

tends to figure in the global media consciousness only during times of disaster. The coming ICC World T20 tournament next March is unlikely to change the number of Western newspapers that include the taka in its tables of daily exchange rates or which care about the Dhaka Stock Exchange. The underlying reasons for the country’s “failure to project” are

In any case, it is a wonder of the world that such a small land mass as Bangladesh should boast great rivers, long beaches, and the unique solitude and World Heritage site of the Sunderbans People living in the West could also add that people of Bangladeshi origin have a growing profile, albeit one that is often subsumed within broader identities such as South Asian sub-continent or Muslim heritage. The never-ending rush of UK celebrities and politicians to the annual British Curry awards which took place this week is a one such example. But the fact remains that even though Bangladesh is on the frontline of many of the key issues facing the world, from climate change and corporate responsibility to debates about secularism and democracy, its footprint on the world stage is still relatively small. The meme started by the CIA World Factbook in the early 1990s that Bangladesh is roughly ‘’the size of Iowa’’ doesn’t exactly help. But at least the parochialism of using Iowa as a unit of measurement adds some insight into US intelligence debacles over the years. (What it should say of course is that Bangladesh has a population somewhat larger than Russia in a space slightly larger than England.) Like other poor countries not high on the tourist trail, Bangladesh

complex in cause and effect. Bangladeshi independence was a worldwide cause célèbre, but that was a generation ago. Contemporary interest in the country abroad is typically limited to specific issues such as labour rights and sea level rise. That these tally with Western associations of Bangladesh with crisis, disaster and poverty has not helped to improve perceptions, the undoubted success of the large NGO sector in challenging gender inequality and reducing rates of population growth notwithstanding. Analysing this background alone will not help to quickly increase international interest or to change stereotypes. That can only come over time with greater global interaction through growing trade and cultural influence. Leading NGOs still play a creative role in modernising the economy by for example helping to popularise technological innovations in facilitating payments by mobile phone, but the future requires the country’s private sector brands to become as world famous as the Grameen Bank. Victimhood is not a viable option for a country that may need to feed 220 million people by 2050. Dhaka’s



burgeoning megacity status demands that the country become known again for the quality of its goods and the wealth of its people rather than sweatshops and disasters. The millions of poor Bangladeshis on whose resilience and hard work the economy depends deserve nothing less. The country’s leaders have to raise aspirations higher. Excuses for not following best practice standards, particularly for safety and environmental management, should no longer be tolerated. And the people who named the Dhaka-Kolkata train as an “express” when it barely averages 20 miles an hour need reminding this is the age of Maglev and undersea tunnels. If we are seriously telling ourselves that two of the biggest cities in the world can do no better than this sort of speed, then how can we expect to cope with the challenge of raising living standards while improving resilience to climate change? Bangladesh’s per capita GDP has a long way to grow before reaching the world average, which is currently around $10,000 per year. The economy’s size just about scrapes its ranking into the top 60 list of global economies, but per capita it is still closer to 160th in the world. But if China and India can grow their economy to be on the cusp of matching their world ranking by population, then Bangladesh needs to aim for the world top 10 as well. How and when exactly this can happen, I do not know. But it is a moral as well as economic imperative to try. The people will provide the answers. Maybe most of the world doesn’t think about Bangladesh much yet. One day soon, this will change. l

he difference between being elected and being re-elected is whether, if you are elected, you are prepared to clean up the mess left behind by your predecessor, or if re-elected, you intend to continue making a mess of governance yourself. Unlike his counterpart Prime Minister Manmohan Singh who was elected in 2004 and then re-elected in 2009, Nawaz Sharif has never enjoyed a consecutive term as prime minister. On each occasion – in 1990, again in 1997, and most recently in 2013 – he has had to clear someone else’s mess. Such stop-start mandates would challenge any leader. Nawaz Sharif cannot hope to be an exception. His reluctance to govern is not feigned. It is born of an insecurity which has taught him to mark first the exit door. Fourteen lean years in exile separate July 1999 – the year he made a quick unscheduled dash to elicit President Clinton’s support for a resolution of the Kargil crisis – and October 2013, when he spent an unhurried 90 minutes with President Barack Obama in the Oval Office. In 1999, Nawaz Sharif feared a coup by General Musharraf; in October 2013, he went as the Truman confidently prepared to choose his own General Macarthur. General Kayani however did not wait to be fired or to be booted upstairs. He announced on October 6 that he would retire from the army as chief of army staff on November 29. Kayani had become COAS in 2007 after “persuading” his boss Musharraf to leave. In 2010, he was given an extension of three years (with President Zardari’s consent) by a PPP Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani. He was not prepared to accept the crown a third time.   However, altruistic Kayani’s motives may have been, Kayani’s announcement has sent a clear message to any would-be Bonapartes within the Pakistan Army. “As I complete my tenure,” his requiem reads, “the will of the people has taken root and a constitutional order is in place. The armed forces of Pakistan fully support and want to strengthen this democratic order.” The last general who thought like that was an Indian - General Sam Maneckshaw, who as COAS reassured Mrs Indira Gandhi that he did not pose a threat to her prime ministership. Whoever Nawaz Sharif may be considering as Kayani’s replacement as COAS should be prepared, like Prince Charles, for a long wait. Sharif has yet to decide which of his two advisers on Foreign Affairs – Sartaj Aziz or Tariq Fatemi – should be the de jure foreign minister. Mr Sharif’s style of governance has a light touch to it. It has all the informality of a family business. He has delegated the erratic economy to Ishaq Dar (whose son Ali is married to Sharif’s daughter). He has left the volatile security situation to Nisar, a

Niaz Alam has worked on ethical business issues since 1992, and is a former vice-chair of War on Want.

loyalist sans pareil. And he has farmed out the Punjab to his younger brother Shahbaz Sharif. There must be moments when Nawaz Sharif must envy the comforts of the presidency to the hurly-burly of the prime ministership. His detractors – of whom Imran Khan has become the most vocal – accuse him of seeking solace in foreign trips instead of tackling the real issues such as education, health, water, housing, population control, food security, internal security, and spilling over them all, provincial disharmony.  

Whoever Nawaz Sharif may be considering as Kayani’s replacement as COAS should be prepared, like Prince Charles, for a long wait

As much as Nawaz Sharif would wish otherwise, his brother’s Punjab is not Pakistan. A MQM-PPP dominated Sindh is a headache; Balochistan is a tribal and troublesome expanse; and Khyber-Pakhtoonkhwa is the migraine that will get worse by 2104. When Imran Khan’s Tehrik-e-Insaf party won the toss in the unsettled province of Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa in the last general elections, he had not anticipated to be called to bat so soon. Nor had it expected to field bullets and drones. Circumstance has made Imran Khan a born-again pragmatist. His call for negotiations with the Pakistan Taliban echoes Nelson’s Mandela’s sage observation: “If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy.” The second part of Mandela’s advice – “Then he becomes you partner” - may be more difficult his coalition KPK government to swallow. By the end of this year, there will be a new army chief and a new supreme court chief justice in place. It is unlikely that the new incumbents will want to continue with the trial of General Musharraf for treason. Revenge is a dish best eaten cold; it is unsafe when stale. By this time next year, there will be a new Afghan leader elected in place of the papier-mâché president Karzai and in New Delhi, there is a real (and frightening) possibility that Narendra Modi may be India’s next prime minister. Mr Modi wears halfsleeve shirts; Mr Sharif should not be surprised when Modi keeps nothing up his sleeves. Domestic imperatives apart, the challenge for Nawaz Sharif in 2014 will be his ability to manage these important changes simultaneously on his eastern and western borders. l   FS Aijazuddin, OBE, is the author of more than a dozen books. This article was first published by The Tribune, India.


How to be a good leader n Muhammad Eusha


wo men besought a leader so that he would assign them the responsibilities of positions which would have allowed them power over people. The leader mentioned one of the most fundamentally crucial facts about leadership in his refusal to yield to their appeal. “We never appoint anyone who aspires to be a leader,” he observed. That indeed was a clever and succinct way of encapsulating in a single sentence the single most important principle of choosing leaders. It is not easy to understand the sentence, however, since only a discerning mind can comprehend the truth contained in it. It is quite clear that this leader believed that a true leader is one who does not, rather paradoxically, hanker after positions and authority. It is essential that one assays this assertion with a little more care. Who does not want to be a leader

these days? It is a most common human tendency to develop a narcissistic self-confidence which convinces one that he is the one who should lead to bring an end to all the sufferings in the world. Think about all the people you know who give you lists of things they would do if given an opportunity to become the ruler of the nation for one day. Very rarely do you see a person who does not possess the instinctive pride and overconfidence in his own abilities to think, judge and act. Humility is a quality which should be innately present in a leader. He would be the last person to go and tell people: “Vote for me because I am the solution to all your problems.” Alas, not only in Bangladesh, but worldwide today, you see people who actually have grown so much arrogance as to declare that people will make a mistake if they choose a leader other than him! The reader should not make the mistake of thinking I am de-

manding that a leader must be lacking in self-confidence. What I am stressing on is that a leader must be humble and conscious of the fact that he is not infallible and is a human being after all. Arrogance should not be an integrated part of a true leader’s character. Only a humble person does not make the grave mistake of imagining that the world should revolve around him and that he is the salvation the world has been waiting for. The other kind of person who is intimidated by thoughts of leadership is the one who knows the gravity of the responsibilities to be shouldered by him. Of course, you have those barbaric satanic crooks who are interested little in the duties attached to leadership, and it is only about securing the rights to all the privileges and prerogatives it comes with. Everyone wants to be the man for whom the busy Dhaka traffic in the afternoon would stop to let him pass first. Those who are sincere and are

aware of the tremendous levels of responsibility pertaining to leadership, would focus apprehensively on the difficulty of it and worry about whether he would be able to carry out his duties with propriety or not. A fool, on the other hand, would see nothing in leadership except the big villa which he would be allowed to stay in and the pleasure of having people obey you like sycophants. Too much enthusiasm about leadership is a conspicuous indication of the fact that you are probably unaware of the colossal demands of the sacred responsibility and are just fascinated by the glamour of the job. Now the reader should try to judge our leaders in the light of the theory propounded in the preceding paragraphs. Do our leaders seem to possess the vital quality of humility? The answer to that question is, sadly, no. We have abundant arrogance, on the other hand. Do they seem to be conscious of the heaviness of the burden

called responsibility they seem to be so enthusiastic in bearing? This is a question which also can be answered with a “no”. The results of immature and puerile leadership are being manifested in our lives today. It would not be inapposite to end this piece with a pertinent anecdote.

Humility is a quality which should be innately present in a leader. He would be the last person to go and tell people: ‘Vote for me because I am the solution to all your problems’

A famous leader once was asked to appoint his son as the successor. And his reaction to such a suggestion was both shocking and enlightening. He said: “Why would I do that to my own son?” Talk about being aware of responsibilities. l Muhammad Eusha is an HVAC specialist and a DT columnist.




Saturday, November 30, 2013

BENGAL CLASSICAL MUSIC FESTIVAL 2013 Today’s Indian artistes Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia

Born in 1938, Pandit Hariprasad Chaurasia, the internationally renowned exponent of the bansuri or bamboo flute, had an early love of music. Chaurasia has become one of India’s most-respected classical musicians, earning several awards, including the national award of the Sangeet Natak Academy in 1984, the Yash Bharati Samman in 1994, the Padma Vibhushan in 2000 and the National Eminence in 2012. Chaurasia currently heads the world Music Department at the Rotterdam Music Conservatory.

Pandit Swapan Chaudhuri

Winner of Bharat Ke Sangeet Ratna Award in 2011 and the prestigious Sangeet Natak Academy Award in 1997 from the Government of India, Swapan Chaudhuri is considered one of the greatest tabla virtuosos, who took lessons from his guru, the legendary Acharya Santosh Krishna Biswas of Lucknow, from the age of five, in Kolkata. He is the recipient of the American Academy of Artists Award and is nominee to Percussive Arts Society Hall of Fame, distinctions reserved for only those musicians who have attained the highest level of artistry.

Pandit Shivkumar Sharma

Maestros from India entertaining the audience at the Bengal Classical Music Festival 2013 on November 28


Bangladeshi artistes in focus

Born in 1938, Pandit Shivkumar Sharma is the winner of a Padmashree and is a musician par excellence. Santoor, which was used in Sufi music in the valley of Kashmir, owes its status in classical music to Pandit Shivkumar Sharma. Through his career of over a half century, he has created millions of new listeners and ardent fans of Indian classical music. His awards and accolades are many, and include the Honorary Citizen award for the City of Baltimore, USA, Sangeet Natak Academy Award, Maharashtra Gaurav Puraskar, to name a few.

Pandit Uday Bhawalkar

We could have dedicated our life towards exploring music: Reenat Fauzia

Born in 1966, Pandit Uday Bhawalkar is a standard bearer for Dhrupad and a strong force in its growing recognition and popularity. Uday spent over 12 years studying and living in the traditional guru-shishya parampara with Ustad Zia Fariduddin Dagar and Ustad Zia Mohiuddin Dagar, the pillars of the Dhrupad tradition. Uday has received prestigious awards including the Kumar Gandharva Samman and the Raza Foundation Award. He joined ITC SRA as a visiting guru from June 1, 2012.

n Saddam Hossain Hriyad Reenat Fauzia was born in 1967. She belongs to the legendary Khan family rooted in Shibpur, Brahmanbaria. She is the grandchild of Ustad Ayet Ali Khan, the legendary maestro of music of the subcontinent, youngest brother of Sursamrat Ustad Alauddin Khan, the world famous maestro of the genre. Her father, Mobarak Hossain Khan is a distinguished musicologist and litterateur and mother Fauzia Khan, is a famous vocal artist. Her first lessons came from her eldest cousin Ustad Khurshid Khan.

You belong to a highly revered family of Classical Music. Do you have regular interactions with your cross-country family members?

Yes, we are lucky to share that bond. Ustad Alauddin’s children and grandchildren reside mainly in Mumbai and Los Angeles. Whenever anyone comes for a visit, we all meet up. Few years ago, my younger brother went to see Annapurna Devi in Mumbai. When Ustad Ali Akbar Khan (Sarod) came to Bangladesh, my father took us to meet him. Also his sons Ustad Aashish Khan (Sarod) and Ustad Pranesh Khan (Tabla) keep contact with us. When Aashish Khan came to Dhaka for a visit, he noticed that my sitar lacks proper strings as they are not available locally. He went back to USA and sent me a carton of strings which I still use.

What are you going to perform today?

I will play the traditional classical music. Starting with Aalap, then moving towards

Vidushi PadmaTalwalkar

Padma Talwalkar was born in Mumbai, India. She received training in Khyal gayaki in three main gharanas, namely Gwalior, Kirana and Jaipur. Their son Satyajit Talwalkar and daughter Savani Talwalkar are also tabla players. Vidushi Padma Talwalkar received a five year scholarship from the Bhulabhai Memorial Trust, a two-year fellowship from the National Center for Performing Arts, the Pandit Jasraj Gaurav Puraskar in 2004, the Vatsalabai Bhimsen Joshi award in 2009 and the Rajhans Pratishthan Puraskar in 2010.

Bilambit Teentaal and reach the climax. I have been thinking of playing Raga Kirwani, though I am still contemplating on that. My time limit is 25 minutes. Swapan Kumar Das will be playing Tabla and my son, Tahsin Khan, will be on Tanpura.

How is your preparation, I mean the voice?

Classical music is a very complicated performing arts and we need to practice on a regular basis. I am looking forward to a nice performance, hopefully.

Do you think this programme will renew interest in classical music?

It is a real extravaganza. It’s not only attracting a huge audience but also artistes around the world. It’s really very encouraging. Who knew that there were so many interested en-

A scene from the film Nirobey

Nirobey screened at KynnysKINO festival n

The film Nirobey (silent) has been screened in the KynnysKINO 2013 film festival yesterday. KynnysKINO film festival is a forum for novel and alternative points of view, presenting the vast and astonishing scopes of human mind and body. The main organiser of the festival is The Threshold Association (Kynnys ry), whose primary aim is to promote the human rights of persons with disabilities, together with the Finnish National Gallery in Helsinki and Turku Main Library. A total of 18 films will be screened at the festival, that will continue till No-

vember 30 at Contemporary museum Kiasma, Helsinki, Finland. Scripted, directed and produced by Jannatul Ferdous Ivy, Nirobey focuses on the women activists of the country. The director of the film is a burn affected woman, who works as a rights activist. Noted actors Elora Gohor, Raisul Islam Asad, Shawdesh, Chanchal, Mohammed Musa, Sahaby and others acted in the film. Nirobey is an aspiration for NGO workers, as it caters to the NGO governance policy for gender equality of human rights activists and the success of a disabled woman who uses her adequate skills to help the non-disabled women. l

Rajrupa Chowdhury took up sarod when she was five years old and started learning at the Ustad Ameer Khan School of Instrumental Music under the guidance of Pranab Naha. Soon afterwards she started learning with Siddhartha Roy Chowdhury and continued with him for more than two decades. She has won many national music competitions such as the first prize in Dover Lane Music Competition in 1999, ITC-SRA Promising Artist Award and a national government scholarship.

thusiasts in Bangladesh, who would come to listen to classical music! Such a patronage was so crucial for the rejuvenation of audience interest.

If you are requested to give one suggestion to change the scenario here, what would that be?

I would suggest for a government benefaction to the classical artistes. Previously, during the rule of kings and emperors, musicians use to perform in courts and that was their way of warning bread. But we can’t maintain ourselves in that manner nowadays. We need to have another profession to keep ourselves respectably. If the government would provide a clear scholarship and maintain it, we could have dedicated our life towards exploring music. l

Tapan Chowdhury to perform at IGCC today n Entertainment Desk

Entertainment Desk

Rajrupa Chowdhury

Seasoned classical singer of Bangladesh, Reenat Fauzia will perform today at the festival

Indira Gandhi Cultural Centre (IGCC) in association with Asian Paints, IRCON and Marico Bangladesh is organising A Musical Evening by eminent Bangladeshi musician, Tapan Chowdhury, at 6:30 PM on November 30, 2013 at IGCC, Gulshan-1, Dhaka. Born in Chittagong, Tapan Chowdhury trained in music under legends such as Late Ustad Priyadaranjan Sen, Ustad Mihirlala and Ustad Sanjit Dey. He commenced his musical career with the renowned rock band Souls, with which he was associated for 22 years. Concurrently, he also performed as a playback singer in over 300 films. Chowdhury has worked with almost all reputed music directors of Bangladesh. He has released almost 100 CDs of his solo, duet and mixed albums in Bangladesh and abroad. He excels in band music, modern Bangla songs, folk songs, Rabindra Sangeet and fusion music. Tapan Chowdhury has performed all over the world as a member of official Bangladeshi cultural delegations. He has also been invited by several foreign private cultural organisations for performances overseas. Since the last 40 years, he has been performing for Bangladeshi television and radio. He has received several awards for his outstanding musical performances both within Bangladesh and abroad. l

Kumar Mardur

Hailing from the rich traditions of Dharwad and with many accolades, Kumar Mardur received his first training from his father Pandit Somanath Mardur, a renowned Hindustani Classical Vocalist of the Kirana Gharana and a senior disciple of the late Padma Bhushan Dr Basavaraj Rajguru. Endowed with a melodious voice, he is known for pure and aesthetic presentation of ragas, crystal clear taan patterns and command over laya.

Victoria Beckham

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Did you know? Antonio Valencia has yet to lose when he has scored for an English club in all competitions (Wigan, Man Utd), winning 24 and drawing one

14 Spurs win to ease pressure on Villas-Boas

Gazi Tank 295/7 in 50 over Eoin Morgan 84, Mahmudullah 51 Taijul Islam 74/2 Prime Doleshwar 235/10 in 45.4 over Mominul Haque 86, Farhad Reza 79 Ashar Zaidi 39/4, Naeem Islam Jr 38/3 Gazi Tank won by 60 runs

Sheikh Jamal v Kalabagan CA Kalabagan CA 223/10 in 49.1 over Abdul Mazid 102, Saghir Hossain 31 Abdur Razzak 56/4, Tanveer Haider 46/2 Sheikh Jamal 228/6 in 39.2 overs Mushfiqur Rahim 97*, Tushar Imran 62 Sheikh Jamal won by four wickets

Mohammedan v Prime Bank Prime Bank 280/6 in 50 over Ravi Bopara 157, Saikat Ali 67 Mashrafe Mortaza 58/2 Mohammedan 266/10 in 48.5 over Rahmat Shah 64, Mashrafe Mortaza 53 Prime Bank won by 14 runs


M W L N/R Pts

Gazi Tank

15 11 4 0

22 +0.612

Sheikh Jamal 15 10 5 0

20 +0.692

Prime DSC

15 10 5 0

20 +0.274

Mohammedan 15 9 6 0

18 -0.332

Prime Bank

14 +0.389


14 Giggs reaches 40 and still going strong

15 Ex-India batsman Kambli suffers heart attack

n Mazhar Uddin

Gazi Tank v Prime Doleshwar

Kalabagan CA 15 6 8


Gazi Tank claim first DPL title


15 7 8 0


Saturday, November 30, 2013


13 -0.801

BFF appeal to Holland n Raihan Mahmood Bangladesh Football Federation has sought Netherlands assistance to raise the standard of football in the country. The president of BFF Kazi Salahuddin, vice presidents Kazi Nabil Ahmed and Tabith Awal called on Gerben de Jong, the Dutch ambassador at his embassy office yesterday. Tabith was upbeat about a sustainable link. “The ambassador assured us of providing all possible support regarding the development of football in Bangladesh and asked us to submit the requirements on paper. We will provide it soon,” said Tabith. National head coach de Kruif and assistant coach Rene Koster, who took charge of the national team in June this year, are both from the Netherlands. l

Gazi Tank players celebrate after their skipper Mahmudullah bowled Prime Doleshwar’s Mominul Haque out during their Dhaka Premier League match at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium yesterday MUMIT M

Sony leads Jamal into semi-finals n Shishir Hoque Sony Norde proved once again why he is the highest paid footballer in Bangladesh as the Haitian international striker scored a brace in Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club’s 3-1 win over Mohammedan Sporting Club in the first quarter-final of the Walton Federation Cup yesterday. The Bangabandhu National Stadium was filled packed with 7,000 spectators - most of them Mohammedan supporters - but Sony Norde stole the show with two brilliant goals to take Jamal into the semi-final. It will be the club’s fourth consecutive appearance in the last four. Sony, however, was taken off the

Jamal finish second n Mazhar Uddin National captain Mushfiqur Rahim’s unbeaten 97 helped Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club to clinch a four wicket win over Kalabagan CA and finish second in the Walton Dhaka Premier League (DPL) at the BKSP 2 ground yesterday. In the other match of the day, English cricketer Ravi Bopara smashed an unbeaten 157 to lead Prime Bank CC to a 14 run win over Mohammedan Sporting Club at the Khan Shaheb Osman Ali Stadium.

Sheikh Jamal vs Kalabagan CA

Winning the toss, Kalabagan elected to bat and openers Avishek Mitra and Abdul Mazid made a good start before Avishek was dismissed for 26. Kalabagan lost wickets at regular intervals after that, with Mazid, who continued to stroke the ball sweetly, being the exception. The opener duly reached his century and scored 102 off 118 balls (16 fours, one six) before being dismissed by national cricketer Abdur Razzak. Wicket-keeper/batsman Saghir Hossain’s 31 was the second highest score in Kalabagan’s 223 all out in 49.3 overs. Left arm spinner Abdur Razzak took four wickets while another left arm spinner Elias Sunny and leg spinner Tanveer Haider bagged two each for Jamal.

Gazi Tank clinched their first ever Dhaka Premier League (DPL) title after beating Prime Doleshwar by 60 runs at the Mirpur Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium yesterday. Both sides had20 points from 14 matches going into the match, which effectively turned the game into a final. After being put in to bat, Gazi made a good start as the openers put on 60. The partnership was broken when Riazul Islam (36) was dismissed by left arm spinner Taijul Islam. Soon after, the other opener national discard Imrul Kayes, was removed for 40 by Shafiul Islam. With a tally of 655 runs in the tournament, Imrul finished the league as the second highest scorer. Another national discard Raqibul Hasan together with English cricketer Eion Morgan, who has not performed to expectation in the last four games, however stood up for the batting side. Raqibul (27) was dismissed by national cricketer Mominul Haque but Morgan continued his aggressive batting and with skipper Mahmudullah at the other end finding the boundary frequently, the Gazi innings was cruising. Even after Mahmudullah was removed for 51, Morgan carried on smoothly before Taijul dismissed him for a brilliant 84 off 71 balls (nine fours, two sixes). Towards the end of the innings, Dutchman Ryan ten Doeschate scored a quick 35 off

Chasing the target of 224, Sheikh Jamal skipper Mushfiqur Rahim continued his fine form as he remained unbeaten on 97 runs off 81 balls (two fours, eight sixes). Tushar Imran weighed in with 62 as Jamal comfortably with four wickets in hand and 10 overs to spare. With the win Sheikh Jamal, moved to 20 points and due to having a better net run rate than Prime Doleshwar, who also finished with 20 points, finished second in the league.

Mohammedan vs Prime Bank

At the Khan Shaheb Osman Ali Stadium, Prime Bank elected to bat first on winning the toss and with Englishman Ravi Bopara smashing the Mohammedan bowlers to all parts of the ground in a stunning innings of 157 not out (11 fours, five sixes), the batting side flourished. Opener Saikat Ali contributed with 67 as Prime Bank made 280/6 from their 50 over. National paceman Mashrafe Mortaza picked up two wickets for Mohammedan. In reply, Mohammedan could not put together a significant partnership as most of the batsman threw their wickets away after getting set. Afghan recruit Rahmat Shah top-scored with 64, followed by Mashrafe Mortaza’s 53 as Mohammedan were bowled out for 266 in 48.5 overs. Man-of-the-match Ravi Bopara picked up four wickets while Ariful Hasan took three for Prime Bank. l

field on a stretcher at the hour mark after being badly fouled by Mohammedan’s Nigerian midfielder Sesan Idowu. Sesan was lucky to only get a yellow card after kicking Sony’s knee. Jamal coach Joseph Afusi was furious at referee’s decision and his reaction saw him being sent away from the dugout. Despite all the attention on Sony Norde, Jamal skipper Mamunul Islam also showed glimpses of his brilliance and was inarguably the second best player on the field. He scored a goal himself and set up Sony for the other two. The star-studded Sheikh Jamal side were threatening from the beginning and quickly settled into their stride with Sony and Darlington being particularly impressive. It was Sony who opened the scoring in the 34th minute, showing his skill, pace and

power. Mamunul delivered a long ball for Sony, who paced forward and dodged past three defenders- Mintu, Baybeck and Sesan Idowu- before firing the ball home into the near post. Sony created another opportunity on the stroke of the half-time, snatching a ball from Baybech and chipping it outside the bar. It took him only nine minutes into the second half to score his second of the night. Mamunul provided a lob to the Haitian, who skipped past Sesan and rounded off Tapu before placing the ball into the net. Five minutes, later the incident took place that forced Sony to leave the field and national striker Shakhawat Hossain Rony came in in his place. Jamal’s attacking instinct did not stop there and continued to mount the pressure. Mamun Khan produced a decent save to deny Darlington from

scoring the third. Mamunul sealed the victory seven minutes before time with a screamer. A Sohel Rana cross from the left flank was cleared by a Mohammedan defender but the rebound was collected by Mamunul, who powered the ball past Mamun Khan from 20 yards out. Mohammedan made three changes to their starting eleven with Mintu Sk, Sohag and Mostafa Seddik replacing Ariful, Hemanta and Chuka Charles. Egyptian forward Seddik made his first appearance in Bangladesh, coming on for Chuka Charles in the second half. Chuka made an immediate impact by scoring a consolation goal for Mohammedan in the 84th minute. Sheikh Jamal will take on the winner of today quarter-final match between Abahani Limited and Soccer Club Feni on December 4 in the first semi-final. l

Afusi delighted with big win n Raihan Mahmood Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi’s Nigerian coach Joseph Afusi praised his players while Mohammedan’s acting coach Jewel Rana admitted that they were outplayed by a better team in the postmatch presser at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday. Afusi appeared to be a satisfied man. “After the previous matches, it was asked why Jamal was not winning big. Today we won by a 3-1 margin against a good team and my team played good football to be the deserving winner,” said Afusi. Afusi thought Sony Norde played well and he is a positive feature for Bangladesh football. “He is not important for Jamal, he is important for Bangladesh football as the footballers can raise their standards against him. He is also a crowd puller,” said the Nigerian. Jamal skipper Mamunul Islam said he had a good chemistry with Sony. “Last year, we played about 28 matches together for Sheikh Russell. This year, we have played three so we have some communication between us,” said Mamun, who delivered both the through passes that Sony turned into goals. Mohammedan coach Jewel Rana said he lacked quality foreign players and his star player Zahid Hossain was below par. “Jamal proved themselves the better team. Their foreign players possess better quality than ours, we were also let down by Zahid who was below par, we failed to produce teamwork,” he summed up. l

18 balls to take the total to an imposing 295/7 in 50 over. Left arm spinner Taijul Islan took two wickets while Farhad Reza, Shafiul Islam and Mominul Haque bagged one apiece for Doleshwar. In reply, Doleshwar lost both openers quickly as national paceman Rubel Hossain removed Mehedi Maruf for 1 and English cricketer Joshua Cobb for 3. Later, the in-form Englishman Dawid Malan was out for 5, leaving Doleshwar in dire straits at 95/6 at the half way stage of the innings. However, Mominul who came to bat at number four, was playing his natural game and stroking the bad balls to the boundary and with skipper Farhad Reza for company, was looking to hold the innings together. Mominul was looking dangerous as he headed towards a hundred before Mahmudullah clean bowled the left hander for a fine 92-ball 86 (eight fours). It proved to be the turning point of the match and although Farhad tried to up the tempo, he could not find support at the other end. Farhad eventually fell for 79 off 60 balls (nine fours, two sixes) and Doleshwar went on to be bowled out for 235 in 45.4 overs. It is Gazi Tank’s first DPL triumph, and they have become the seventh winner of the competition after Abahani (17 times), Mohammedan (nine times), Biman (five times), Victoria (four times), Old DOHS (twice) and Brothers Union (once) in the tournament’s 37th season. l

RESULT Sheikh Jamal Sony 34, 54, Mamunul 83



Charles 84

MATCH HIGHLIGHTS plays a one-two 16” Darlington with Sony and only a last-ditch clearance from Nahid prevents the Haitian from getting a shot off.

heads the ball over the 32” Emily bar from Emon Babu’s free kick. Sony shows his skills 34” GOAL! and dodges past three defenders before firing the ball home.

steals the ball from 45” Sony Baybeck, breaks into the

penalty area and chips the ball wide of the goal.

Sony again, skips past 54” GOAL! Sesan, rounds off Tapu and placed the ball home.

fouls Sony badly in the 60” Sesan middle of the field, leaving the Haitian injured. Shakhawat Rony replaces Sony.

Mamunul powers 83” GOAL! the ball past Mamun Khan

from 20 yards out, after Sohel Rana’s cross is cleared by a Mohammedan defender.

Chuka Charles scores 84” GOAL! for Mohammedan, after receiving a through ball from Manik.

Sheikh Jamal forward Sony Norde celebrates a goal against Mohammedan during their Walton Federation Cup querter-final match at BNS yesterday MUMIT M

Sony Norde the star of the show n Raihan Mahmood

Sony Norde, the Haitian forward of Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club, was at the center of all conversation as the wily scorer rose to the occasion before being carried off with a knee injury at the Bangabandu National Stadium yesterday. The skilled forward was in action from the very beginning on the left flank, making life difficult for the opposition defence. His dash, dribbling and control was a delight to watch and his double strike also showed his brilliance. He beat three defenders before sending the ball into the near post with

a cracking shot for his first and later outfoxed Mohammedan goalie Mamun Khan, as he changed his mind about which direction to shoot and left Mamun clueless. Mohammedan’s acting coach Jewel Rana and Mamun Khan appeared at the post-match presser and acknowledged the “Sony Factor”. “Maybe my defence was a little shaky about restricting Sony Norde. I always told my defence not to allow space to him inside the box but he is intelligent and made his way through,” said Jewel. However Sony Norde was not there to celebrate his team’s success. Her was deliberately hit on the knee by Mo-

hammedan’s Nigerian midfielder Sisan Idow in the 60th minute and had to be taken to hospital for an x-ray. The incident infuriated Jamal coach Josef Afusi and he was sent off the field by referee Tayed Hasan. “I am not a referee and as a coach, I am not entitled to comment on refereeing. However, I would like to request the referees association and the BFF to see the DVD of the match and see whether it was red card offence or not,” said Afusi. Later, Jamal officials said that medical reports indicated Sony had not sustained any serious injury and he will play in the next match. l




Saturday, November 30, 2013

Spurs win to ease pressure on Villas-Boas n AFP, Paris Tottenham Hotspur won 2-0 against Tromso in the bitter chill of Norway on Thursday to seal first place in Europa League Group K and ease a little of the pressure on manager Andre Villas-Boas. Reports in England in recent days suggest that the Portuguese is hanging on to his job after last Sunday’s 6-0 hammering by Manchester City in the Premier League, and another substandard performance on the trip north of the Arctic Circle would have done him few favours, even if Spurs were already through to the last 32 before this game. Michael Dawson and Roberto Soldado were the only two players to keep their place in the team from the Man-

chester City debacle, and the muchchanged Spurs side had to wait until the second half before finally breaking down a team who were recently relegated to the Norwegian second tier. The opener on the artificial pitch at the Alfheim Stadion did not come until the 63rd minute, when Adnan Causevic turned the ball into his own net under pressure from Vlad Chiriches, and the London club doubled their advantage when Gylfi Sigurdsson set up Mousa Dembele to fire home from 12 yards with 14 minutes remaining. Dembele struck the post soon after but the 2-0 scoreline was enough to maintain Tottenham’s perfect record in Group K and boost confidence ahead of Sunday’s Premier League clash with Manchester United. “It was important for us to get back to winning ways. We said that before the

game when we were back in London,” said Villas-Boas. “We knew about the conditions and the artificial pitch and the players did well to get a result which puts us back on our toes, ready for Man Utd.” Meanwhile, Swansea City were unable to get the point that would have clinched their qualification from Group A as they lost 1-0 at home to alreadyqualified Valencia, Dani Parejo scoring the only goal of the game in the first half. However, Swansea were left to rue an erroneous decision by the officials to disallow an Alvaro Vazquez effort before the break that would have brought the Welsh side back level. “I’ve seen the disallowed goal and it was at least one yard onside so that was a pity,” Swansea manager Michael Laudrup told ITV after the game.

“With a little more we could have got that point, at least, that would have got us through. Now we have to maybe get that point in the last game in Switzerland (against St Gallen),” added Laudrup, who lost Wilfried Bony to a hamstring injury which could rule the striker our for several weeks. Kuban Krasnodar beat St Gallen 4-0 earlier in the day, with the Paraguayan Lorenzo Melgarejo scoring twice, and the Russians could yet overhaul Swansea on the final day. There was agony for England’s other representative Wigan Athletic, who saw their chances of qualification taken out of their hands in a 2-1 home loss to Belgium’s Zulte Waregem in Group D. However, a total of 18 clubs have now qualified for the last 32, including Eintracht Frankurt, who secured top spot in Group F with a 1-0 victory at Bordeaux.

French side Olympique Lyonnais, who have endured a difficult start to the season, are through after recording a narrow 1-0 win at home to Spanish top-flight strugglers Real Betis with Bafetimbi Gomis coming off the bench to score the only goal of the Group I game in the second half at the Stade de Gerland. Despite the defeat, Betis are also through, their superior head-to-head record against Vitoria Guimaraes - who drew 0-0 with Rijeka in Croatia - guaranteeing them at least second spot. And Betis’s local rivals Sevilla are certain to progress from Group H despite only managing a 1-1 home draw with Estoril in Spain. Rubin Kazan of Russia, Genk of Belgium, Lazio, Anzhi Makhachkala, PAOK and AZ Alkmaar also secured their berths in the knockout stages on Thursday. l

No bonus for German players before WC last 8 n

Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker has warned his side’s Premier League title rivals the best is still to come from star midfielder Mesut Ozil. Arsene Wenger’s side head to Cardiff on Saturday looking to extend their lead at the top of the table before the rest of the title challengers play on Sunday. A win would move the Gunners seven points clear of second placed Liverpool, who face Hull 24 hours later, and Mertesacker is confident they will do just that if Ozil is at his best in Arsenal’s first league fixture at Cardiff since 1961. After a brilliant start to life in England following his club record £42 million move from Real Madrid on transfer deadline day, Ozil has produced a few under-whelming displays of late. He missed a penalty in Tuesday’s Champions League win over Marseille, but rebounded to provide an assist for


Valencia (ESP)

Odessa (UKR)


Zagreb (CRO)

Razgrad (BUL)



Elfsborg (SWE)


Salzburg (AUT)

Esbjerg (DEN)


Standard (BEL)

Rubin Kazan (RUS)


Maribor (SLO)

Wigan (ENG)


Zulte (BEL)

Pacos (POR)

Fiorentina (ITA)

Dnipro (UKR)

0-0 4-1

Bordeaux (FRA)


Frankfurt (GER)


Maccabi (ISR)

Genk (BEL)

0-0 3-1

Vossen pen-17, Kumordzi 37, De Ceulaer 40

Yarmolenko 9

Rapid (AUT)


FC Thun (SUI)

Liberec (CZE)


Freiburg (GER)

Sevilla (ESP)


Lyonnais (FRA)


Real Betis (ESP)

0-0 Trabzonspor (TUR) 4-2

Guimaraes (POR)

Warsaw (POL)


Lazio (ITA)

Anzhi (RUS)


Tiraspol (MDA)


Tottenham (ENG)


Haifa (ISR)



Antonov 78, Didenko 90+1 Bezjak 38, 79

Van Buren 18, 79 Natcho 43 Barnett 7

Parejo 20

Beciraj 20

Mellinger 39

De Camargo 53 Mezga 86

Hazard 37, Malanda 88

Pandurii (ROM)

Lanig 83

Kiev (UKR)

Sadik 62

Ginter 23, Coquelin 73

Gameiro 7 Gomis 66

Rijeka (CRO)

Estoril (POR)

Ruben Fernandes 90

Limassol (CYP)

Olcan Adin 23, 61, 83, Soner Aydogdu 25

Epureanu 58

Tromso (NOR)

Abraham 68, Sangoy pen-80

Perea 24, Felipe Anderson 57 Isa 53

Causevic og-63, Dembele 76

AZ Alkmaar (NED)

Gudelj 37, Gudmundsson 90+5

Karagandy (KAZ) Zulte-Waregem players celebrate beating Wigan Athletic 2-1 following their Europa League match at The DW Stadium, Wigan, England on Thursday

Jack Wilshere to score Arsenal’s second goal and Mertesacker believes Ozil will quickly silence any critics. “Mesut has made good progress,” Mertesacker said. “He was always a threat against Marseille and he nev-

FIXTURES Aston Villa Cardiff Everton Newcastle Norwich West Ham

v v v v v v

Sunderland Arsenal Stoke West Brom Crystal Palace Fulham

er gave up after the penalty that he missed. “We are delighted with him, especially in the transition from defence to offence, when he is always a threat. “He can play the balls, he is the one who always goes deep all of the time. He is in good form and I think we will see more. “Sometimes he looks like his head is going down, but we said at half-time

that we do not care about the missed penalty. We just go on and that is what he did.” On Sunday, Liverpool will look to keep pace with Arsenal when they visit the KC Stadium and Reds midfielder Jordan Henderson knows his team are under pressure to take advantage of a relatively easy run of fixtures. Third placed Chelsea, behind Liverpool on goals scored, host Southampton, with Spanish defender Cesar Azpilicueta admitting Jose Mourinho’s team need to bounce back from a lacklustre display in their midweek loss at Basel in the Champions League. Free-scoring Manchester City will look to continue their goal spree when they meet Swansea at Eastlands. Also on Sunday, champions Manchester United will travel to Tottenham for a clash between two teams who have under-achieved so far this season. Meanwhile, Crystal Palace’s new manager Tony Pulis starts his reign with a crucial trip to fellow strugglers Norwich. l

Reuters, London

Bayern Munich’s Arjen Robben has warned his team-mates to avoid anything ‘‘strange’’ happening when the Bundesliga leaders host bottom side Eintracht Braunschweig today. Munich’s emphatic 3-0 win at Borussia Dortmund last Saturday extended their record run to 38 matches unbeaten in the Bundesliga. But Bayern want to consolidate their four-point gap at the top of the German league table and Robben has warned his team-mates not to assume three more points at the Allianz Arena. “We respect each and every opponent and I’ve often seen in my career that when top plays bottom, strange things can happen,” said the 29-yearold Robben. Second-placed Bayer Leverkusen

Swansea (ENG)

Rybalka 81

are home to Nuremberg as they look to bounce back from their 5-0 drubbing to Manchester United on Wednesday at the BayArena, their worst defeat in Europe.

FIXTURES Bayern Munich Leverkusen Hoffenheim Mainz 05 Hertha Berlin Schalke 04

v v v v v v

Braunschweig Nuremberg Werder Bremen Dortmund Augsburg VfB Stuttgart

Having got their Champions League campaign back on track with a 3-1 win at home to Napoli on Tuesday, Borussia Dortmund are looking to kick-start their Bundesliga form at Mainz 05 after consecutive defeats. Fresh from their Champions League draw at Steaua Bucharest, Schalke 04 host their bogey team VfB Stuttgart today.l

Ryan Giggs was the first graduate of the so-called ‘Class of ‘92’ to make his mark at Manchester United and on the day he turns 40, he is preparing for the weekend the same way he has for most of his life. The mercurial Welshman has outlasted David Beckham, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt and Gary and Phil Neville, who came off the same United academy conveyor belt, and it is not beyond credibility that he could rack up 1,000 games for the club. United’s record appearance maker was one of the side’s best players in the 5-0 Champions League hammering of Bayer Leverkusen on Wednesday, his 953rd match for the club, and he will be in the squad for Sunday’s trip to Tottenham Hotspur. With 13 Premier league titles, four FA Cups, two Champions Leagues, four League Cups and, surprisingly only one PFA Player of the Year award, Giggs has achieved everything possible in his club


Dzidic og-54, Kitsiou 90+2

Brazil arena to be used in World Cup despite deaths n AFP, Sao Paulo

Madrid to take no risks with Ronaldo

A Brazilian stadium will not be removed from the World Cup roster despite a deadly construction accident but its completion will be delayed, officials said Thursday. The Arena Corinthians in Sao Paulo is slated to host the opener of the football extravaganza in June. On Wednesday, two workers were killed there when a crane collapsed and crushed them. “Accidents occur. I very much deplore the deaths, but I am absolutely convinced that the Cup will open” in Sao Paulo on June 12, said Jose Maria Marin, president of the Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) and the Cup’s Local Organizing Committee (COL). Ricardo Trade, COL’s director general, echoed those remarks, telling the daily Estado de Sao Paulo that the Arena Corinthians “will not be excluded from the Cup.” One of 12 Brazilian host venues for the football extravaganza, the stadium is also expected to host five other games, including a semi-final. l

Cristiano Ronaldo will play no part in Real Madrid’s home clash with Valladolid today as coach Carlo Ancelotti opts to take no risks with the Portuguese star’s fitness. Ronaldo missed Wednesday’s 4-1 Champions League win against Galatasaray at the Santiago Bernabeu with a hamstring problem and, while he has now returned to training, Ancelotti believes now is the ideal time to give him a rest. “He has had a scan and the muscle has completely recovered but he is not so comfortable. He has not trained much so we don’t want to take any risk because he has two weeks to work and prepare for the next league game,” Ancelotti told press ahead of Saturday’s meeting with Valladolid. Ronaldo, considered the favourite to win this year’s Ballon d’Or, is suspended for the Copa del Rey tie against third-tier side Olimpic de Xativa next weekend and is unlikely to feature against FC Co-

n AFP, Madrid

Robben wary of bottom Giggs reaches 40 and still going strong n side Braunschweig n AFP, Berlin

St Gallen (SUI)

Boyd 17, Boskovic 64

Mertesacker backs Ozil to inspire leaders Arsenal n AFP, London


Melgarejo 3, 71, Ignatyev 54, Kaboré 90

Kalinic 12, Zozulya 56, Eric Pereira pen-70 Shakhov 86, Kravchenko 89

Reuters, Berlin

German players will get a bonus at next year’s World Cup in Brazil only if they reach the quarter-finals, with the country’s football association (DFB) willing to pay out 300,000 euros ($408,000) each if they lift the trophy. Players and the DFB agreed yesterday on what they said was a success-related bonus structure, the same as they had for last year’s European championship in Poland and Ukraine, where they reached the last four. “The players are again committing with this success-dependent regulation to our performance principle,” DFB chief Wolfgang Niersbach said. Each player will get 50,000 euros if Germany reach the last eight, 100,000 euros for a semi-final spot and 150,000 for losing in the final. Three-time World Cup winners Germany have not lifted a major trophy since Euro 96 and by the time of the Brazil tournament will have equalled their longest post-war stretch without a trophy from 1954 to 1972. Germany have reached the semi-finals or better in their last four consecutive major tournaments but have failed to win a title. l

RESULTS Krasnodar (RUS)

career, but still appears hungry for more. “I’m lucky that I have been at one club, where I am surrounded by good players and a good manager,” Giggs said in an interview with the BBC that will be screened on Saturday.

“I still want to do well in every game, want to win trophies and my focus needs to be on that. I look after myself and try to train every day in order to make myself available for selection. “I enjoy it as much as I can and, of

course, try to contribute to the team. I don’t know what the younger lads think of me. When I was 17 and 18, I thought 31 was ancient. And here I am at 40!” Giggs was magnificent against Leverkusen and team mate Wayne Rooney could not praise him highly enough. “Their centre half was asking how is he still playing at that age,” Rooney said. “His composure on the ball is fantastic. Ryan has done it for years and I’ve run out of things to say about him. “I don’t know how he is still doing it.” Beckham, 38, who has been busy promoting the ‘Class of ‘92’ film that will be hitting the big screen in December and will chronicle the rise of United’s golden generation, said Giggs “makes him feel old”. “I’m not surprised he’s still playing because of the talent he is and how driven he still is and how he’s looked after himself over the years really is incredible,” Beckham, who ended his career last season, said in an interview on the BBC. l

penhagen in Madrid’s final Champions League Group B game on December 10 with the Spaniards already having won the section. He is therefore not set to return until the trip to Osasuna scheduled for December 14. Angel Di Maria is again set to start on the left of the Madrid attack on Saturday as Ancelotti’s side look to provisionally

FIXTURES Elche Celta Vigo Real Madrid Espanyol

v v v v

Atletico Madrid Almeria Valladolid Real Sociedad

close the gap on leaders Barcelona to three points before the Catalans visit Athletic Bilbao on Sunday. Meanwhile, Ancelotti believes that Gareth Bale has now integrated fully into the Madrid side. The Welshman has scored five goals in six games since struggling in the 2-1 defeat to Barcelona at the end of October, that run including a magnificent free-kick against Galatasaray on Wednesday. l

Galliani to quit as Milan chief executive: ANSA n Reuters AC Milan chief executive Adriano Galliani is to quit after 27 years at the club, he told the ANSA news agency yesterday. “I’m leaving with or without a (severance) agreement,” he was quoted as saying. “I have suffered serious personal damage, that’s not the way to carry out a restructuring; you should do it with elegance. “I’m resigning for just cause,” Galliani said, adding he would leave after the Champions League match at home to Ajax Amsterdam on Dec. 11. Milan are 13th in Serie A after a miserable start to the season. Barbara Berlusconi, the daughter of club president Silvio Berlusconi, recently said Milan needed a new philosophy although she denied calling for a change of chief executive. l



Mahmudullah credits all-round effort for title


Siddikur impresses in second round Siddikur Rahman came back in the Indonesia Open in style to finish the second day in joint 13th position as the Bangladesh golfer posted a four-under-par score in his 16 holes before the round was halted due to lightning threats at the Pantai Indah Kapuk course yesterday. The 29-year-old, who was placed 43rd after some indifferent play in opening round on Thursday, started the day with a birdie and then carded four more along with a bogey at the US$750,000 Asian Tour event. Meanwhile, overnight leader Gaganjeet Bhullar of India played through 16 holes on -10 while playing partner Jazz Janewattananond of Thailand, was on -9 with two more holes to play. They will return at 6.15am today to complete the second round, along with 52 other players. Play was abandoned at 3.46pm local time due to lightning threats. –Tribune Desk

n Mazhar Uddin

Wasim Akram to get award on diabetes fight Popular Pakistan paceman Wasim Akram Thursday said he will receive the firstever young leader’s award in sports for his fight against diabetes in a congress in Melbourne. The 47-year-old, renowned for his left-arm pace bowling, has been fighting against the disease since 1997. “I have fought against diabetes because of my discipline and hard work and the young leader’s award will be a just reward for my discipline,” Wasim told AFP. Wasim will get the award during the World Diabetes Congress to be held in Melbourne, Australia from December 2-6. The International Diabetic Foundation will be organising the congress. Wasim, who took 414 Tests and 502 one-day wickets, will also deliver lecture to help create awareness on diabetes. According to the World Health Organisation statement of 2011 around 12.9 million people have been diagnosed with diabetes in Pakistan. Wasim said he will also give coaching on how to deal with the disease. –AFP

Bayern captain Lahm out for two weeks with thigh injury

Bayern Munich captain Philipp Lahm has been ruled out for around two weeks after picking up a thigh muscle injury in their 3-1 Champions League win at CSKA Moscow on Wednesday. Lahm, 30, underwent checks upon the team’s return to Munich on Thursday and will miss their next two league games. “He will miss the upcoming games against Eintracht Braunschweig (on Saturday) and Augsburg,” the club said in a statement. Bayern, four points clear at the top of the Bundesliga, are already missing several key players through injury, including Bastian Schweinsteiger, Franck Ribery, Claudio Pizarro and Xherdan Shaqiri, as well as long-term absentee Holger Badstuber. –Reuters

DAY’S WATCH Star Sports 1 8:00PM ICC World T20 Qualifier Final Ten Cricket 2:00PM South Africa vs Pakistan 3rd ODI Ten Golf 12:00PM Indonesian Open Day Three 6:00 PM Alfred Dunhill Championship Day Three Star Sports 4 9:00PM English Premier League Cardiff City v Arsenal La Liga 11:00PM Celta de Vigo v Almeria 1:00AM Real Madrid v Valladolid 3:00AM Espanyol v Real Sociedad Star Sports HD 9:00AM La Liga Elche v At Madrid 11:30PM English Premier League Newcastle v Wet Brom Star Sports HD 2 1:45AM Italian Serie A Genoa v Torino Ten Sports 10:00PM French Ligue 1 2013/14 AS Monaco v Stade Rennaise Ten Action 1:00AM French Ligue 1 2013/14 Valenciennes v LOSC Lille


Saturday, November 30, 2013

Gazi Tank skipper Mahmudullah (R) were ecstatic after securing their maiden Dhaka Premier League title at SBNS yesterday MUMIT M

Warner’s Trott comments ‘out of order’: Waugh n AFP, Sydney

Former Australia Test captain Steve Waugh says cricketer David Warner’s comments about England batsman Jonathan Trott were “out of order” and had crossed the line. Trott made a shock departure from the Ashes tour earlier this week after the England Cricket Board revealed that he was suffering from a stress-related illness. Australia’s Warner has attracted criticism for comments he made during the first Brisbane Test in which he described Trott as “poor and weak”. Waugh, who was regarded as a hardbitten and competitive Test captain, was critical of Warner’s comments. “I think Dave Warner’s comments were out of order. I don’t believe you should comment on someone else personally on the opposition,” Waugh said on the Sydney Cricket and Sports Ground Trust website. “He can make a generic comment, but I think when you get personal like that, you cross the line on how players treat each other, and the respect they should have. So I didn’t agree with Dave’s comments, having said that, he probably did smell a bit of fear in the England opposition players. l

Gazi Tank won their first ever Dhaka Premier League (DPL) title and their skipper, vice captain of the national team Mahmudullah praised his players and said it was totally a team effort that allowed them to clinch the championship. “It was a total team effort because in the middle, I went away for national duty and Imrul took over and won a number of important matches, so it was good,” said Mahmudullah. Gazi Tank looked a compact side right from the start of the league. They had a number of stand-out performers and left arm spinner Arafat Sunny’s 29 wickets is the most in the league while Imrul Kayes’ 655 runs is the second most for the season. “We took it match by match, we planned every match individually. Overall, and there were lots of performers. Imrul, Rakibul, Morgan, Tendo all of them performed a lot,” said the proud captain. Mahmudullah went on to praise Doleshwar and said that they played good cricket in the tournament. Taking early wickets, he felt, was the key to winning the final match, “As a





Ravi Bopara (Prime Bank)










Imrul Kayes (Gazi Tank)





104* 43.66 73.02



Mushfiqur Rahim (Sk Jamal) 12





69.77 103.63



Saikat Ali (Prime Bank)










Masakadza (Kalabagan CA)






55.90 108.12




Mat Inns NO Runs

Mat Mdns Runs Wkts BBI

Coach Darren Lehmann said Friday there will be no let-up as Australia continues its aggressive in-your-face cricket against England in the current Ashes Test series. Amid the rancour over a spiteful opening Test in Brisbane which Australia won by 381 runs last weekend, Lehmann said he wants to take Australian cricket back to the golden eras of Dennis Lillee and Jeff Thomson, the Chappells and Steve Waugh. Lehmann said the playing days of strong-willed Australian characters, Merv Hughes, Rod Marsh and Allan Border were defined by a good hard brand of cricket. “We want to play within the rules but we will play aggressive, in-yourface cricket which was a trademark of those eras,” Lehmann said, writing in News Limited newspapers. “When Australian teams are performing at their best they are playing right on the edge as we were in Brisbane. That is the Aussie way.” Australia captain Michael Clarke was fined 20 percent of his match fee

by the International Cricket Council after warning England’s James Anderson to expect a broken arm. The final day of the first Test boiled over with constant “sledging” (insults) and plenty of finger pointing. Lehmann gave no indication that his Australia team would be backing off from their fiercely-fought cricket at the Gabba, where firebrand paceman Mitchell Johnson was man-ofthe-match with match figures of nine wickets for 103. “I loved the whole theatre around Mitchell Johnson’s display at the Gabba right down to the fact that his new moustache brought back all those rich memories of the 1970s with the stars and their handlebar mo’s (moustaches),” Lehmann wrote. “I like the sight of characters expressing themselves in the game. That’s the sort of cricket the fans want to see. “We have asked Mitchell to fill a role and he did that brilliantly with aggression and confidence. We want him to liven them (England) up. “When he is on song as he was in Brisbane he produces the type of per-

Ave Econ

100 50


4 5

Arafat Sunny (Gazi Tank)





4/13 19.13 3.72 30.8 1


Farhad Reza (Prime Doleshwar)





5/51 19.65 4.99 23.6 0


Enamul Haque jnr (Prime Bank) 16




4/43 22.07 4.12



Rubel Hossain (Gazi Tank)





6/18 14.56 4.35 20.0 1


Taijul Islam (Prime Doleshwar)





6/19 28.72 4.56 37.7 0


Lehmann wants more Aussie aggression in Ashes n AFP, Sydney

ited a positive mental attitude for his performance. “I haven’t made a lot of changes, I think I have just been a bit more positive and my mindset has been particularly good. In the last few matches, I was a bit unlucky but today was a very important match and we managed to cross the line. You try as hard as you can and today was a very good day. “Batting is a very funny game. You have a lot of downs, very few ups and today was an up which I am very grateful for. It’s all good news today. So I am happy,” he said. l

team, Prime Doleshwar played very well, they beat us in the first round. I thought if we could take early wickets today, we could win the match and it felt really good.” Mahmudullah has previously won two Dhaka league championships with Abahani and this is the third time the 27-year old achieved the feat. Meanwhile, English cricketer Eion Morgan, who failed to impress in the first four matches in which he scored 0, 26, 33 and 11, played a match winning knock of 84 in the crucial encounter yesterday. The foreign recruit cred-

formances that are a rare and precious sight in the modern game. “My wish is that the lessons of Johnson’s spell -- and the entire bowling effort -- echo down through the generations.” Lehmann said Johnson’s blistering spell at the Gabba reminded him of Australian cricket in the Lillee-Thomson era of the 1970s. Lehmann said it had been a dramatic week for cricket and he wanted to send his best wishes to Jonathan Trott following his decision to return home with a stress-related illness. “He is a fine player and I’m sure we will see him again at international level,” he said. Lehmann said he urged the Australian fans in next week’s second Adelaide Test to replicate the crowd force of Brisbane. “The noise in Brisbane when Johnson and Nathan Lyon were spearing through England’s first innings was something to behold,” he said. “It is a long time since we have felt the sort of vibe that the whole country was behind us. “Thank you, Australia. Please keep it up.” l


Beximco, Anowara Group reach Corporate T20 final n Raihan Mahmood Beximco Pharma and Anowara Group cruised into the final of the Marcel 3rd T20 Corporate Cricket beating DBL Group and defending champions Walton at the Dhaka Residential Model School and College ground yesterday. Beximco Pharma, bowling first, bundled DBL Group out for 75 in 19.5 overs with Noor and Bashar taking three wickets each for nine and 23 runs respectively. Shariar of DBL top-scored with 16. Beximco Pharma scored 76/3 in 13.4 overs to win the match. Tinku scored 25 while Abul Bashar of Beximco Pharma was named man-of-thematch for his 14 runs and 3 wicket haul. Anowara Group defeated Walton by five runs in a fiercely contested semifinal. Anowara Group scored 111 all out in 19.4 overs with Taposh Shah scoring 39 runs in 41 balls while Rahat of Walton took 4/7to go along with Johirul’s 4/28.  Later, Anowara bowled Walton out for 106 in 19 overs.  Rahat made17 while Taposh Shah grabbed 3 wickets for 29 runs and Sharif took 3 wickets for 20. Taposh Shah was named manof-the-match. l

Brazil back in top 10 ahead of draw n Reuters, Zurich Brazil clawed their way back into the top 10 when FIFA published the November rankings on Thursday ahead of next week’s World Cup draw. Brazil, who slumped to an all-time low of 22nd in June, went back into the top 10 after winning the Confederations Cup in July. Brazil then slipped to 11th last month but friendly wins over Honduras and Chile have taken them to 10th. Soccer’s ruling body FIFA is using October’s rankings as then primary yardstick for next week’s draw so Brazil’s ups and downs will have no impact on their status among the top seeds for the World

Cup. World champions Spain maintained the number one spot they have held



Spain (1) Germany (2) Argentina (3) Colombia (4) Portugal (14) Uruguay (6) Italy (8) Switzerland (7) Netherlands (8) Brazil (11)

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Kambli suffers heart attack n AFP, New Delhi Former India batsman Vinod Kambli, once considered as talented as his school friend Sachin Tendulkar, was admitted to a Mumbai hospital Friday with a suspected heart attack, media reports said. Kambli, 41, had undergone angioplasty on two blocked arteries last year and appeared to suffer a heart attack on Friday morning, NDTV news channel and Rediff website said. There was no immediate comment from the hospital. Kambli shot to fame in 1988 when he shared a then world record 664run partnership with Tendulkar in an inter-school match in Mumbai, with both batsmen making unbeaten triple centuries.

Kambli played the last of his 17 Tests in 1995 before he had turned 24, finishing with 1,084 runs at an average of 54.20. He also scored 2,477 runs in 104 one-day internationals with two centuries. l

since July 2008 followed by Germany, Argentina and Colombia. World champions Spain maintained the number one spot they have held since July 2008 followed by Germany, Argentina and Colombia. Thanks to their two wins over Sweden in the World Cup playoffs, Portugal have also climbed back into the top 10. All the nations in the top 20, except for Ukraine, have booked their tickets to Brazil next year. The leading eight seeded teams for the draw are Brazil, Spain, Argentina, Germany, Colombia, Belgium, South American champions Uruguay and Switzerland. l

Tomic gets wildcard to defend Sydney title

n AFP, Sydney Australia’s Bernard Tomic has fallen back on a wildcard entry to make the rankings cut-off and defend his only ATP Tour title in Sydney in January. Tomic’s 51 ranking fell just outside the cut-off point of 49 for the men’s field at the Sydney Int'l from January 5-11. But organisers said they issued Tomic their first wildcard this week, ensuring the 21-year-old can attempt to repeat his tournament victory from early this year. Tomic will have his work cut out against a field headed by world number five Del Potro, Wimbledon semi-finalist Jerzy Janowicz, world No.13 Nicolas Almagro, No.16 Fabio Fognini and former champions Jarkko Nieminen and Dmitry Tursunov. l

England's batsman Gary Ballance executes a shot during a two-day match against Australia's Chairman's XI at Traeger Park in Alice Springs yesterday AFP

Ballance adds weight to Test chance with 55 n AFP, Alice Springs Gary Ballance boosted his chances of playing in next week’s second Ashes Test with a half-century while others failed on a sweltering first day for England in their tour match on Friday. The Yorkshire left-hander, promoted to number three, scored 55 off 134 balls as the tourists could only muster 212 for seven before declaring against the Cricket Australia Chairman’s XI in Alice Springs. It was Ballance, bidding with Jonny Bairstow and Ben Stokes to replace Jonathan Trott in the second Adelaide Test, who compiled his maiden halfcentury for England to hold the innings together.

Stokes and Bairstow chipped in with 28 and an unbeaten 31 respectively on a day of sapping heat when the batsmen struggled to convert starts. England are looking for a new batsman following the shock departure of number three Trott from the rest of the Ashes series with a stress-related illness. “I’d like to think so. To be able to get a 50 today ... I’ve given myself a bit of confidence so if I do get picked I think I’ll be ready,” Ballance said of his Test chances. Local openers Marcus Harris (10) and Steve Cazzulino further frustrated England’s efforts at a quick couple of wickets after their innings declaration by reaching stumps at 16 without loss heading into Saturday’s final day. l



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Saturday, November 30, 2013

Tk15 drug bought for Tk700! n Moniruzzaman Uzzal The Central Medical Stores Depot (CMSD) has procured a drug at Tk700 apiece for DMCH’s new Bone Marrow Transplant unit - a staggering 4,661% more than the Tk14.70 paid by the DMCH only just a few months ago. The Dhaka Tribune has learnt that the CMSD sourced the heavily overpriced drug, along with many others, from a local contractor who is backed up by an influential leader of the ruling-party backed doctor’s association. The DMCH – the biggest public healthcare facility in the country – procures the necessary drugs once at the beginning of every fiscal year. Although the new Bone Marrow Transplant (BMT) unit is part of the DMCH, the CMSD procured and supplied the drugs to be needed by the new facility for treating cancer patients. Sources said the CMSD landed on the procurement deal hastily because the BMT unit had been opened in a hurry. Meropenem is an antibiotic used commonly in the intensive and coronary care units. The CMSD supplied this drug at Tk1,450 per piece to the BMT unit, while the DMCH bought this drug for only Tk380 at the beginning of this fiscal year. The overpricing in this case is nearly 382%. Records show that the DMCH procured Fluconazole tablets for Tk2.70 apiece, but the CMSD supplied the same tablet at Tk60 each to the BMT unit – overpriced by 2,222%. Other drugs that also saw prices re-

set unreasonably, include Filgrastim, Acyclovir, Vancomycin, Cefepime, and Cycoldhodphamide. All these were part of the 11-drug lot that the CMSD supplied to the BMT unit before it was opened on October 26. Seeking anonymity, officials from a number of pharmaceuticals companies said around Tk3m had been misappropriated in the Tk7m deal.

The CMSD reportedly flouted its own procurement policies by directly procuring the drugs from Harun Enterprise – a local contractor – instead of going through competitive tendering. There are allegations that the CMSD wrapped up the unreasonable deal having come under the influence of the said doctor leader, who is a supporter of the ruling party. Seeking anonymity, a CMSD offi-

cial, who was involved with buying the medicine, told the Dhaka Tribune that a letter from the government policymakers had directed the CMSD to ensure the supply of drugs at any cost prior to the BMT unit’s inauguration. Since there was no time to float tenders, the drugs were bought from a contractor. Sources said the drugs in question were delivered to the BMT unit in the

second week of October. But because the new unit lacked adequate staff, the consignment was received at the DMCH store. The irregularities were first discovered by the eight-member DMCH survey committee charged with scrutinising the products in store. Dr Mashiur Rahman, head of the DMCH Medicine Store, admitted that the CMSD had bought the drugs at high

prices. He told the Dhaka Tribune that as a member of the survey committee, he could not overlook the massive irregularity. Prof MA Khan, head of the hematology department, said the CMSD had been requested to supply top-quality drugs for the country’s first ever BMT facility. He, however, claimed that he had no idea about the excessive prices. DMCH Director Brigadier General Dr Mostafizur Rahman said the hospital had nothing to do with the procurement process. Professor Dr Rashid-e-Mahbub, president of Health Rights Movement Bangladesh, told the Dhaka Tribune that the health ministry had hurriedly inaugurated the BMT unit at DMCH. “I guess these drugs were purchased just before of inauguration. So, the contractor charged excess price.” Dr Akhtaruzzaman, assistant director (collection) of the CMSD, however denied all allegations of irregularity. “As far as I remember, several types of cancer drugs were bought directly from Beacon Pharma and foreign company Roche, before the bone marrow unit was inaugurated. But those were procured in accordance with the World Bank’s directions,” Dr Akhtaruzzaman said. When asked how the price of a Tk15 Amikacin injection was quoted Tk700, he claimed that since the consignment was a bulk one, the contractor rounded up the amount by fluctuating the prices. Even if the price was set at Tk700, it had been done following existing rules, Dr Akhtaruzzaman claimed. l

Blockade affecting textbook distribution n Mushfique Wadud Uncertainty is looming large over the education sector with the ongoing political unrest hampering the distribution of textbooks and eating into the study time of students. National Curriculum and Textbook Board officials said they had not been able to distribute any textbooks during the 71-hour blockade programme of the opposition. They fear that if things continue this way students might not get their books in time for the first day of the new academic year.

Transport owners are demanding four times higher fare than usual and sometimes we are not getting transport to send textbooks The opposition observed a 71-hour blockade programme starting from Tuesday to demand the cancellation of the 10th parliamentary election schedule. “At present, we are only dependent on Friday and Saturday to send textbooks to upazila levels. If shutdowns or blockades are observed on the weekends it will be difficult to distribute textbooks on the first day of new academic year,” said an official of the NCTB. Officials said according to the previous plan, textbooks should reach upazila level by November 25 but all textbooks could not be distributed, according to the data collected yesterday.

Bangladesh Mudron Shilpa Samity, a platform of printers, has recently written to the NCTB asking it to extend the time until December 31 for the book distribution. Officials said after textbooks are reached to the upazila level some more times are needed to send the textbooks to the schools as many schools are located in the rural areas. There are 19,070 secondary schools and 89,712 primary level educational institutes in the country. Of the secondary level schools, 526 are located in hilly areas, 528 in coastal areas, 714 in haor areas and 1,344 in river basins. AFM Shah Alam, general secretary of Bangladesh Mudron Shilpa Samity, said they were also facing difficulties in sending textbooks on the weekends as transport owners were demanding high fare. “Transport owners are demanding four times higher fare than usual and sometimes we are not getting transport to send textbooks,” he said. When contacted, NCTB Chairman Shafiqur Rahman told the Dhaka Tribune that printing press had already informed him that they were facing difficulties in sending textbooks. “Almost all textbooks have already been printed but cannot be distributed to upazila level for blockade,” he said. Shafiqur, however, hoped that students would get textbooks on time. “We have some emergency plans and I hope students will get textbooks on the first day of new academic year,” he asserted. l

Another arson victim dies, two in critical condition n Mohammad Jamil Khan “Bring my son back; where is my son? What have you all done to him?” The anguished cry of a mother, whose son was burnt to death by blockaders, was blowing in the wind in the hospital corridor. Her son, Mohammad Rabin, 25, had received burn injuries on Thursday as miscreants torched the bus he was on in Shahbagh. He succumbed to his injuries around 3:40pm yesterday evening at the burn unit of Dhaka Medical College Hospital. Rabin, 25, son of Abdus Salam, worked in a sweater factory. Partha Shankar Pal, a residential surgeon of the burn unit, told the Dhaka Tribune that 59% of his body was burnt. Rabin was shifted to ICU soon after the incident as his respiratory system was affected from the fire. Hailing from Shibchar of Madaripur, his pregnant wife Maria Akter Mafi lives with his mother Aklima Begum in his native village. Aklima was walling at the burn unit gate. She said Rabin came with his cousin Nahid to Dhaka on Thursday after visiting his pregnant wife as Nahid insisted on buying some winter clothes. Nahid, a student of Class IX of Kutubpur High School, was also among the 19 burns victims. He died first at the hospital. “What would I say to his pregnant wife who is waiting for the return of her husband?” said Aklima. Abdus Salam, father of the victim, said they would file a case to ensure punishment of the perpetrators. Of the 19 burn victims, 16 patients are undergoing treatment at the DMCH. Two of them died while the family of advocate Khodeza Nasrin, 45, who suf-

fered 21% burn injury, shifted her to Mohammadpur Modern Clinic for better treatment. Of the 16 patients, Jahangir Hossain, 45, accountant of Goshairhat Upazila, who suffered 15% injury is undergoing treatment at ICU as his respiratory system was affected while Mohammad Nurunnabi, 55, Assistant sub-Inspector (AB-5771) is also undergoing treatment at ICU with 10% burn injuries. His respiratory system was also affected. Partha Shankar Pal, attending doctor of the unit said if patients’ respiratory systems are affected then it is an abnormal case. Meanwhile, Mohammad Dulu Mia, 32, a police nayek who received a splinter injury in a crude bomb attack at Joypurhat Bata intersection last Monday, is still lying unconscious even after four days of multiple operations. The on-duty doctors of ICU of DMCH said his left eye was totally damaged and he is still unconscious as some splinters dug deeper into his head, affecting his brain. On Friday evening, Dulu’s wife Rojina Begum was found sitting on the floor of ICU gate as visitors were not allowed inside the ward. Talking to the Dhaka Tribune she said her daughter Dinat Jahan, seven, a student of Class I, wanted to see her father. Holding back her tears, Rojina said on the day of the incident he called her at noon asking about the launch and that was her last conversation with her husband. In the latest 71-hour rail-road-waterways blockade programme about 42 people with burn and splinter injuries have so far been admitted to the DMCH. Of them, four people have died while undergoing treatment. l

Political unrest hampers Cox’s Bazar tourism Sohel, back from n Kayes Cox’s Bazar The number of tourists has plummeted this year in Cox’s Bazar because of the ongoing political turmoil. Although October-April is considered the peak season, political unrest have kept tourists away from the world’s longest unbroken beach. Small traders said the number of visitors this season fell sharply, leading to a decline in sales. Many of them are thinking of switching their profession. Mominul Islam, 18, who works in a dry fish store, said: “Before starting working here three months back, I used to work as a photographer on the beach. I used to earn Tk10 per photograph. I delivered the photos in an hour.” “My daily income was Tk3,000

during peak season; but this year it came down to around Tk200.” Mohammad Milon, 25, a coral vendor is yet to change his mode of earning livelihood. “Proceeds are almost zero. I am planning to close down my business,” he said. Medium businesses are struggling to recoup their operational costs. Most of the hotels and motels are also experiencing a shrinkage in the number of tourists checking-in. Although the peak season had started two months back, the number of customers are below 70% than estimations made according to last year. Khandker Shafiul Alam, general manager of Ocean Paradise Hotel, said: “Most of the hoteliers are worried about giving salary to their employees. l

A mother in distress at the loss of her son, who was killed in an arson attack on a passenger bus in the capital on Thursday. Robin, the son, succumbed to his injuries yesterday evening at the DMCH burn unit RAJIB DHAR

No option left for school authorities 163,009 absent in PSC’s science exam que Wadud and n Mushfi FM Mizanur Rahaman The series of anti-government movements by the opposition are taking a heavy toll on academic activities and examinations, with repeated shutdowns and blockades placing school authorities in a dilemma. Head teachers are expressing concerns about how to finish their academic session by December 7, an obligation that every school has to meet. “This is an awkward situation for all of us,” said Abu Sayeed Bhuiyan, head of Government Laboratory High School. He said they found no other way but to conduct examinations during the last blockade programmes, but now the fear of insecurity has seized students and guardians. “One of our students narrowly escaped a crude bomb attack the other day when coming to take test in the school while some guardians also got away from blast targeting vehicles they were riding during the blockades,” said the headmaster. He said: “It seems that no option is

left for us. We cannot conduct exams in hartals and blockades for security reasons, but we have to finish exams by December 7.” Like Abu Sayeed, most school headmasters are struggling to complete their annual examinations because of political violence.

We are yet to start annual exams as my school is a centre for Primary School Certificate exams. I do not know how I will complete the exams Most city schools remained open yesterday even though it was a weekend. From the morning, guardians were seen taking their kids to schools like a regular school day. Zubayer Ahmed was seen in Dhanmondi 32 area taking his son to Mastermind school. He said: “Nowadays, the weekends have turned very busy for us as schools remain open. A parent, Nasreen Sultana, told the Dhaka Tribune she did not send her son to take exams during the blockade

fearing insecurity and now her son was facing problems to retake the examinations in the Government Laboratory School. Most Bangla-medium schools remained open yesterday for holding make-up classes. Manju Ara Begum, principal of Viqarunnisa Noon School and College, said their college students took two examinations yesterday as exams could not be held over the last couple of days because of blockade. “We are yet to start school annual exams as my school is a centre for Primary School Certificate exams. I don’t know how I will complete exams,” She said. The primary school certificate examinees took their rescheduled science examination yesterday. 163,009 of them were absent on the day of science examination. Directorate of Primary Education officials blamed volatile politics for the absence of students. Director General Shyamal Kanti Ghosh of DPE also attributed the striking absence to the ongoing political violence.

In Chittagong, school and college authorities arranged annual examinations on the weekend yesterday. Primary School Certificate exams were also held yesterday in different centres peacefully. Anwara Begum, principal of Bangladesh Women Association Girls’ High School and College, told the Dhaka Tribune both students and teachers faced problem to sit and hold tests respectively beyond the academic calendar. Sultana Khanum, a mother of 12-year-old Nawrin, who sat the PSC exam in Bangladesh Navy School and College, said her daughter faced difficulties in paying attention to her study because of uncertainty caused by the change to exam schedules. Prof Iftekhar Uddin Chowdury, pro-vice-chancellor of Chittagong University, said the leaders had no right to play down the importance of the students’ career. “Earlier O level examinations were suspended by the British Council and now the PSC, JSC and annual exams are being hindered because of the hartals and blockades which are no longer expected,” he added. l

Editor: Zafar Sobhan, Published and Printed by Kazi Anis Ahmed on behalf of 2A Media Limited at Dainik Shakaler Khabar Publications Limited, 153/7, Tejgaon Industrial Area, Dhaka-1208. Editorial, News & Commercial Office: FR Tower, 8/C Panthapath, Shukrabad, Dhaka 1207. Phone: 9132093-94, Advertising: 9132155, Circulation: 9132282, Fax: News-9132192, e-mail:,, Website:

November 30, 2013  
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