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| vo l 2 I ssu e 6 | F R I D AY, J UN E 13, 2014

World Cup: Are you ready? 4

Love, baba


Cup Of life


home team





A W e ekly Productio n of


Volume 2 | Issue 6 | June 13, 2014

Editor Zafar Sobhan


Executive Editor Shahriar Karim

2 This Week

Managing Editor Jahangir Hyder

3 Say What?

Features Editor Sabrina Fatma Ahmad Assistant Magazine Editor Rumana Habib


Weekend Tribune Team Tasnuva Amin Nova Promiti Prova Chowdhury Farhana Urmee Rifat Islam Esha Faisal Mahmud Shah Nahian Syeda Samira Sadeque James Saville

4 First person Love, Baba

Art Direction/Photography Syed Latif Hossain Cartoons Syed Rashad Imam Tanmoy Rio Shuvo

5 Listology Soccer dads

9 Photo story

6 Cover Story Cup of life Photo: Syed Zakir Hossain/Dhaka Tribune

World cup fever

20 Interview Mamunul Islam

Regulars 14 Legalese 16 Tough Love

Colour Specialist Shekhar Mondal Kazi Syras Al Mahmood

Circulation Wahid Murad

18 Stay In Shab-e-Barat 19 Go Out World Cup venues

12 Social construct Protests in brazil


World Cup: Are you ready?

Email your letters to:

| vo l 2 Issu e 6 | F R ID AY, J U N E 13, 2014

the cover Football is the ultimate democratic sport. All you need is a ball and some friends. That’s why it’s called the beautiful game photo: Kamal Pasha

12 Digital world Fantasy football

17 Post Riposte Child labour

Graphics Sabiha Mahmud Sumi Mohammad Mahbub Alam

Advertising Shahidan Khurshed

8 Feature Brazil vs Argentina

13 The Way Dhaka Was Home team

Contributors Quamrul Abedin Sabrina Fatma Ahmad N Anita Amreen Jennifer Ashraf Kashmi Vince Boisgard Rajib Dhar Mahmood Hossain Khan N Moushumi Sabah Rahman Dina Sobhan

Production Masum Billah

7 Business Jerseys and flags

World Cup: Are you ready? baba 4 Love,

Of life 6 Cup

team 12 home


s that the flu going around, or is it World Cup fever? The beautiful game has come to turn our lives upside down (pg 6), just in time to save us from the sweltering heat. Two weeks ago, almost overnight, Dhaka city was festooned with flags (pg 9), mostly in the colours of our perennial favourites Brazil and Argentina (pg 8). Where are you watching the games (pg 19)? By the way, those jerseys everyone is wearing – we made those. The World Cup means big business (pg 7). You can play along too. There’s fantasy football league online (pg 12), and the Dhaka Tribune is running a World Cup photo contest. Send your

Editor’s note best moments to: WorldCupBD@ On a more serious note, all is not sunny in Brazil, which has been wracked by protests for months (pg 12). We also debate the local child labour question (pg 17). We also look back to the heyday of football in our own land (pg 13) and sit down with our national team captain (pg 20). And let’s not forget Baba. This Sunday is Father’s Day, and we’ve rounded up some paternal advice (pg 4), and some famous father-son footballing duos (pg 5). Shabe-barat Mubarak (pg 18).


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2 News | This week

Pakistanis burn Taliban gunmen attacked a security post outside Pakistan’s Karachi airport on Tuesday, a day after an all-night siege by the militants left 37 dead and extinguished a tentative peace process. In this photo, the airport employees leave the Jinnah International Airport after the attack. The latest assault on the airport raised further questions about the authorities’ ability to secure key facilities in the face of a resurgent enemy, and came as air force jets

pounded suspected militant hideouts in the northwest, killing 25 people. The attack on the security post targeted an entry point to an Airport Security Force (ASF) camp 500m from the airport’s main premises, and around a kilometre from the passenger terminal. The Taliban later claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it was in response to air strikes in the tribal areas, and vowed further unrest. News and photo: AFP

Nepalese students hug for a change

Protests in Budapest Protesters on Monday marched with the Hungarian and the EU flag on the oldest Hungarian bridge, the Lanchid (Chain Bridge) in Budapest, Hungary demanding press freedom. They demonstrations were sparked following a Hungarian online

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news editor’s sudden contract termination. There were allegations that he was fired for publishing a story which embarrassed Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s government. News and photo: AFP

In a bid to set a new world record for the largest tree hug, two thousand and one Nepalese school children hugged trees as they celebrated World Environment Day last week. The students hugged trees in a park in the forest of

Gokarna village, on the outskirts of Kathmandu to set a new world record for the largest tree hug. The previous record for the largest tree hug record was set in July 2013 in the US when 936 people hugged trees. News and photo: AFP

Say what? | News

CIA first Tweet T

he CIA last weekend started on the social media website by announcing: “We can neither confirm nor deny that this is our first tweet.” The CIA, which has long monitored social media to ascertain global trends and track evil-doers, officially joined Twitter and Facebook last weekend. The spy agency cast the move as an effort to engage directly with the public. In less than 90 minutes,

the CIA account had nearly 84,000 followers, and that number was climbing fast. The CIA has long had a public website, and maintains official accounts on YouTube and Flickr, the photo-sharing site. Among the items to be posted on twitter are artefacts from the CIA’s (non-public) museum, and updates to its “World Factbook,” a compendium of world leaders, maps and similar information. News: Reuters


High anticipation


ya Traore, a former professional football player, holds on to a lamppost as he performs for visitors in

the Montmatre area of Paris, in anticipation of the World Cup. News and photo: AFP

Papier mache panda ‘flash mobs’ in Hong Kong


n army of papier mache pandas swarmed around the arrivals hall at Hong Kong airport on Monday as part of a charity campaign to promote the conservation of the endangered bears. Here, French artist Paulo Grangeon poses with some of these papier-mache pandas. The display of 1,600 papier mache pandas at the airport was the first of a series of events planned across the city, as part of

a month-long "1600 Pandas World Tour" campaign. Designed by Grangeon, a sculptor, the panda installation had already been displayed in other cities including Berlin, Paris and Taipei, before coming to Hong Kong. Organisers say the city will see "flash mobs of pandas" descending on various places in Hong Kong during the campaign including Victoria Harbour, the Shatin racecourse and on the city's trams. News and photo: AFP

Dirty feasting in Germany


participant wearing a Shrek mask lies in mud during the so-called “dirty pig” feast on June 9, 2014 at a fairground in Hergisdorf,

Germany. According to The Huffington Post, this festival is celebrated to drive out the winter. News: Desk; Photo: AFP

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4 First person | Love, baba

Papa preaches This Sunday we’ll admit that sometimes, father does know best Syeda Samira Sadeque


hen I was in class VI, my father used to help me with my history homework, despite having no particular background in the subject. He would have preferred to teach maths, given his background in business, but I insisted on history. So every evening after he returned from work, trying not to be distracted by cricket or the news, he would direct all his energy into teaching me

about civilizations which had little significance to either of our lives. Those lessons have remained in my memory over the years. As I reflect on why, I realise it’s because they are a symbol of what my father stands for, something he has passed on to me: a love of learning. I say this at the risk of sounding clichéd, but my learning – through courses, mistakes, regrets and experiences – are my biggest strength. My father’s unconditional

dedication to teaching me a subject that he very clearly had little interest in, has taught me the importance of learning and teaching others, even at the cost of your own time, convenience and comfort. For many of us, the presence of our fathers in our lives is not as obvious as that of our mothers. But it’s a significant one. Their teachings are an integral part of who we eventually become.


Photo: Bigstock

This Father’s Day, we share the words of wisdom that our Babas, Abbus, Daddys and Papas have shared with us:

Photos: Courtesy

Sarwan Kabir's father:

Never hesitate to do what you believe to be right; stand your ground even if everyone around you is against it.

Naria Navin Khan's father:

Spend as little as possible on the luxuries of life, but spend as much is needed for the best health and education! Naria says: “I think this is especially useful in this materialistic day and age, when it would be difficult to find a kid without a bunch of notes in his wallet and a high-end phone!”

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Shababa Billah's father:

This is your college life; enjoy it to the fullest you will remember these days forever. You will never forget these golden memories.

Alipha Khan's father:

Never send your heart where your head won't go. Always dress impeccably to work. Don't ever judge anyone for anything.

Naziba Noor's father:

Always remember to respect your mother irrespective of her imperfections. One of the biggest sins you can ever do, as a human being, is to hurt your mother. Every smile you bring to your mother's face translates into a blessing and a prayer. With your mother's true blessings, success is bound to be yours. Naziba says: “This has been all the more touching because he has always unselfishly tried to ensure that kids place their mother before anyone, even himself. This shows a man's respect for women. As a husband, as a son and there was lot to learn from that about how men ought to treat women, unlike how they are often treated in our society.”

Patricia D'silva's father:

Be honest and work hard. Fight for what is right and be humble. Never let anyone use you like a door-mat. Always respect your elders. Patricia says: “He passed away on the April 8, and I miss him dearly. He was my best friend.”

Tahsin Choudhury's dad:

Always try to feed people good food. Tahsin Says: “Abbu lives by this. Literally. He believes you can make most people happy with food.”

Rifat Rahn's father:

You should not do a job. Do business.

Soccer dads | listology

Like father like son


When it comes these famous footballers, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. We’re pretty sure these gentleman will spend Father’s Day watching the beautiful game together Faisal Mahmud

Cesare and Paolo Maldini Arnor and Eidur Gudjohnsen

Perhaps the most famous father and son duo are the Maldini family of Italy. Both father Cesare and son Paolo have lifted the European Cup as captains of AC Milan, exactly 40 years apart. In the 1998 World Cup, Cesare was the national coach and Paolo was team captain. Paolo retired from his 24

year professional career at the end of last season after winning a host of major honours at club level and making 126 international appearances for Italy. Paolo's two sons Christian, 17, and Daniel, 13, have already been signed by AC Milan and currently play on the youth teams.

Johan and Jordi Cruyff

The name Johan Cruyff needs no introduction in football. The Dutch master is perhaps the greatest footballer from the Netherlands. He was unfortunate not to win any World Cups but had immense success at club level for Ajax, Barcelona and Feyenord.

This father-son combination were actually teammates in the same international match. Son Eidur replaced father Arnor during Iceland’s 3-0 friendly win over Estonia in 1996. Eidur is the more famous of the two, as he played in

the Premier League for Bolton and Chelsea and then won the Champions League with Barcelona. What many did not know is that Arnor also used to be a striker. He won over seventy caps for Iceland, and is presently Eidur’s agent.

Juan Ramon and Juan Sebastien Veron

His son Jordi, named after Sant Jordi, patron saint of Catalonia, had a fairly successful professional career of his own. The attacking midfielder had spells at both Barcelona and Manchester United, and is currently playing for a club from Malta.

Father Ramon and son Sebastien are referred to as La Bruja (The Witch) and La Brujita (The Little Witch) respectively. Though never capped at international level for Argentina, Juan Ramon was known for his technical ability. He became famous while playing for the

Argentinean club Estudiantes which won three Copa Libertadores in the late 60s. Sebastien has been more successful as a player. One of his best personal moments came earlier this year when he emulated his father by lifting the Copa Libertadores with Estudiantes.

Frank Lampard Sr & Jr Frank Lampard Sr spent eighteen years in West Ham United, where he made his name playing left back. He took up coaching after retiring as a player and was the assistant coach of the Hammers when Lampard Jr

began his professional career in his father’s team, West Ham United. Lampard is reputed for his intelligent play and goals from midfield, and without any doubt has been the more successful of the two at both club and international levels.

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6 Cover story | Cup of life

The cup of life

Photo: Vince Boisgard

World Cup season is upon us, and our lives are about to change Sabrina Fatma Ahmad, Mahmood Hossain, Khan N Moushumi, N Anita Amreen and Sabah Rahman Solidarity of strangers

Dhaka has long had a reputation as a city that's hard to be lonely in because of its eager, friendly, and curious people – however you may feel about them. As it develops further into a metropolis, deadlines and smartphones make us busier, and the crime rate makes everyone suspicious of one another, making this harder to believe in. That is – until football season rolls around. When the flags go up and the jerseys roll out, the ice begins to thaw. Strangers strike up conversations about matches and players. People stand shoulder to shoulder at viewing centres, cheering on their favourite teams. There are arguments too. Anyone who was in town during the last World Cup will remember the micchils and memes brought out by Brazil and Argentina fanatics. More than any festival, religious, cultural or political, the Fifa World Cup is a great equaliser in Bangladesh, and just for a couple of weeks, all day every day here in this crazy busy city – it's party time.

United we stand, divided we fall

Once every four years the nation is divided over one tournament. The passion cannot be rivalled.

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Families and friends are torn apart by 90 minutes of the beautiful game. You're rooting for one team while your father, brothers, sisters, cousins may be rooting for another, bragging rights are on the line. Even your significant other might be rooting for a team you despise. While football can bring warring tribes together for a match, the shirts representing different nations can also bring out the supporters' competitive nature. Wishing your team's opponents to lose can be taken to another level. We're talking about giving your family members or friends the silent treatment. To take a page from a gambling book, betting on a sure win can soon turn sour. When it does, watching the World Cup isn't as fun. The best way to avoid all the tension is to become a gracious winner and a gracious loser. As deep as the support can go, remember at the end of the day, it's still just a game. Football is a sport that connects all walks of life with the celebratory spirit of togetherness, heightened emotions, and pure joy. No matter which country's colours you proudly wave, the real winner is the game itself: football. From Bangladesh to Brazil, shout and cheer until the last minute but love the game for eternity.

Eye candy on screen

Ladies, are you feeling neglected because your man would rather watch football into the wee hours rather than pay attention to you? It's time to stop sulking in a corner and start watching the games yourself. Ahem, have you seen the players? Whether you have a thing for Neymar's winning smile, Argentina's Gonzalo Higuain's scruffy style, or cannot stop yourself from longing for Kevin Price Boateng, there is a man for every woman. Are you Googling those names right now? If none of these men float your boat, don't fret! You can always look out for Mr Golden Balls (David Beckham) in the stands. He may not be playing, but he'll be there. Either way, there's plenty to enjoy.

Getting away with it

After yelling “Goal!” at the top of your lungs every time the ball enters your opponent's goalposts and sipping from large mugs of coffee for an array of sleepless nights, the aftermath is that you are strolling the hallways of your office or school like a zombie with sleepless, groggy eyes and a wobbly head. Employees slacking off at work

and students bunking classes will be at peak levels this World Cup season, but it only happens once every four years, so you might as well get cut yourself some slack. Let the sick calls pile up.

The party spirit

Football fanatic or not, as World Cup fever reaches a frantic pitch, all Bangalis somehow get swept up in the spirit of it all. Strangers huddle together to witness what has now become one large, excitement packed celebration. Shamelessly gawking at TV screens from the sidewalks, standing frozen in front of projector screens, and scrambling to listen to any and all radios for updates – we love getting our share of football fun from every source possible. With the Brazilian party spirit running high, every street and every household proudly pledges their allegiance, be it with their flags or their loud cheers. From a random passerby on the road to a rickshaw puller – we are all part of the festivities, sometimes waging wars over our favoured teams and sometimes coming together for the love of a shared victory. We Bangalees embrace the World Cup with shameless abandon, enjoying both the lows and the highs with an almost religious zeal. Let the games begin.


Jerseys and flags | Business



name in Brazil’s game B

angladesh is playing a big role in this World Cup. Although the much awaited Fifa World Cup 2014 kicked off last night in faraway Rio De Janeiro, we too have made our mark on the grand event by exporting millions of jerseys to Brazil and other European countries. Bangladesh has always been a regular supplier of sportswear to brands such as Nike, Adidas, Puma, Umbro, and Reebok. This year, ahead of the World Cup, production at garment factories skyrocketed as they hustled to meet high demands both locally and in the export market.

RMG goal

Buyers started placing orders as early as last June, and exports began in September, according to Abdus Salam Murshedi, former chairman of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association and current director of the Bangladesh Football Federation. “Although Bangladesh is not a participating team in the World Cup, its participation and

The World Cup means big business for local entrepreneurs Promiti Prova Chowdhury

contribution have been ensured with the jerseys carrying the Made in Bangladesh tag. Football fans will wear them and cheer for their teams at the gallery. This is a huge matter of pride for us,” he said. Echoing Murshedi’s sentiments, Mohammad Hatem, first vicepresident of Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association, said: “Jerseys worth $1bn were exported to European countries, America and Brazil. Around 250,000 pieces for both men and women were exported from my own garment factory [MV Knit Fashion].” However, despite such high sales, both officials said the last year was volatile for business. With political unrest and the Rana Plaza collapse, the rate of export did not reach the level targeted, even though exports increased by around 30% compared to the 2010 World Cup.

Local market

In addition to the exports, both RMG owners and local businessmen have been raking in profits in the last 15 days, as football fans have been on a

shopping spree, buying jerseys and flags of their favourite teams. The footpaths of Motijheel, Mouchak and Gulistan are overflowing with makeshift shops carrying a range of sports uniforms, flags and different items of fanfare. People have also come to Dhaka from all over the country to do business ahead of the World Cup, seizing a golden business opportunity. So far, they have expressed satisfaction with sales. Besides jerseys and flags, there is a range of other souvenirs that bring the celebratory mood of Fifa to the local markets and footpaths, such as watches, mugs and wristbands. Bakeries in cities around the country are also busy making cakes specially designed for World Cup.

Flags of our heroes

“We delivered a 100ft Brazilian flag upon order,” said Abdur Razzak. Abdur is a sales executive at Joy Sports, a wholesale shop of sportswear and sports equipment situated inside Gulistan Sports Market. Unsurprisingly, he said Brazilian and Argentinian flags were their best selling items. The prices of standard flags vary from Tk80-290 depending on the size. They can even be customised. You can add an image of your favourite player or the logo of your favourite team for an extra cost of Tk60-70. There are a number of wholesale shops selling such items inside the Gulistan Sports Market. Jerseys cost Tk200-300 depending on the quality of the garment. Abdul Matin Babul, proprietor of Joy Sports, says the price of football jerseys has increased by an average of Tk100. Local jerseys that used to

sell at Tk120 are now being sold at Tk200 or higher. The Chinese kits cost Tk500-600, which are sold for Tk350 during the year.

A festive Dhaka

Babul says the eve of Fifa World Cup is as exciting as Eid. “We are struggling to meet the demand of customers. We have our own factory, and even then we had to take help from other garment factories. People’s buying capacity has increased from previous years, and they are in a much more of a celebratory mood than ever before.” In the capital’s Belpotti area, hundreds of tailors were seen busily stitching flags from dawn to dusk outside the wholesale market in Shomobay Twin Tower. The ever-present rivalry of teams is alive even in these busy markets. In between their work, the tailors often argue about which team is the best. “Hey don’t disturb me! I cannot ruin the Brazilian flag!” said fierce Brazil fan Md Akash, while tailoring a 45ft Brazilian flag. The rest of the year, he is a tailor of ladies’ wear. Akash is one of the many tailors, of different ages and gender, seated in rows, continuously operating the sewing machines in the lanes of Belpotti. Akash charges Tk500 to tailor one flag sized around 30ft. He has made a flag 90ft across, which he plans to sell for Tk5,000. However, the staunch Brazilian supporter in him is not all desperate to see it go. “If it is not sold,” he said with a grin, “I will hang it in front of my house on the street in Sonargaon.”


Photos: Quamrul Abedin

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8 feature | Brazil vs Argentina

Our South American side Bangladeshis are such a staunch supporters of Brazil and Argentina, they may as well be our home teams Shah Nahian


or the past few weeks, the question on everyone’s lips has been: “Who are you rooting for – Brazil or Argentina?” The flags are already dangling from balconies and car bonnets, and people are strutting about in their team jerseys. The most common colours around are definitely those of Brazil and Argentina. In Bangladesh, we embrace these two teams as if they were our own. According to Bangladeshi football historians, most fans were devoted to Brazil because of Pelé’s talent in the beginning. However, after Maradona’s “goal of the century” in 1986 (beating England during the quarter finals) many here developed a new respect for Argentina. In the early days of BTV, these were some of the first World Cups to be televised here. Since then, the people have continued their support for the two teams that first enthralled them to this day. Rivalry between the two South American nations is a long-standing one that predates football. Few remember the wars and political confrontations. Now we only recall matches, with their victories and goals.

Meeting their match

Despite the hype of Brazil vs Argentina games, the two teams facing off during a World Cup is a rare occurrence. It has happened just four times: in 1974 when Brazil won 2-1; a draw in 1978; a victorious 3-1 for Brazil in 1982; and most recently a 1-0 win for Argentina at the 1990 World Cup. Like praying for rain during a drought, people from all around the country, and indeed the world, pray for another such momentous game. Luiz Felipe Scolari, the Brazilian coach, has predicted the two South American powers will meet again in the final this year. “From our analysis, the final we see happening is Brazil on one side and Argentina on the other,” he said. The sport media company Infostrada used something called the Elo rating system, which analyses previous match results to forecast the results of the

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World Cup. They predict Brazil, Germany, Spain and Argentina will reach the semi-finals, with Brazil beating Argentina in the final.

I support Brazil because they play real, fierce football unlike any other team

Star Rivalry

The two teams have been home to some of the best players of all time: Brazil’s Pelé and Diego Maradona from Argentina. Go to a local tea shall and ask who is the better payer – Pelé or Maradona – to launch a neverending debate. Neymar and Messi are their successors. While Messi is indisputably one of the best players in the world, the four years younger Neymar also packs quite a punch. Messi has picked up enough medals and trophies to sink a small ship. His greatest strengths on the field are his composure, control, lethal dribbling skills, and the ability to pass unselfishly and with deadly accuracy. The 22-year-old Neymar, on the other side of the pitch, is best known for speed, fast paced dribbling, ball control and finishing. It may be unfair to directly compare Messi with Neymar, who has yet to reach the height of his playing and goal scoring abilities. However, he has consistently outperformed Messi on the international stage, netting 39 goals in 24 games for the Selecao, while Messi had only managed four goals and two assists for the Argentina squad. The former Santos playmaker’s goal scoring record, 0.56 goals per game, is also significantly better than Messi’s, which sits at 0.4. Pelé stated: “There’s always this Maradona comparison, saying he’s better than Pelé. Now some are saying that Messi is better than Pelé. Well, he has to be better than Neymar first, which he isn’t yet... At the moment Messi is just more experienced.” In response, Maradona condemned the statement from his Brazilian counterpart as “stupid” for even suggesting that Messi is not as good as Neymar. “Maybe Neymar is the best player in the world,” Maradona said, “but only if you say that Messi is from a different planet.”


I sell hundreds of both jerseys, but i support Argentina more, because of Messi

Ready to rumble


he rivalry has a darker side. Just days ahead of World Cup, Bangladesh has seen already seen an eruption of violence among fans of the South American teams. On June 9, at least 11 supporters of Brazil and Argentina were reportedly injured in a clash at Barisal Government Polytechnic Institute. Two groups of supporters of Brazil and Argentina teams, led by Chhatra League cadres Chhoto Reza and

Photos: Vince Boisgard

Promiti Prova Chowdhury

Mahmud Hasan, engaged in an altercation over the “Hand of God” incident by Diego Maradona the 1986 World Cup. At one stage, Argentina’s supporter Reza slapped Brazil aficionado Mahmud Hasan, triggering the clash that left eight Brazil supporters and three Argentina supporters injured. Police rushed to the spot and brought the situation under control. Additional police were deployed on the campus to avert further untoward incidents.

World cup fever | Photo story


World cup: Are you ready? Virtually overnight, Bangladesh became festooned with the colours of the of nations of our football heroes. “Are you in Rio?” a Brazilian friend asked recently after seeing picture of Dhaka on Facebook. No, but it’s an understandable mistake. From the boats of Sadarghat to the wholesale market of Gulistan to rickshaws absolutely everywhere, the Cup has officially taken over our world. Buckle up. It’s going to be a great month. Photo: Nashirul Islam/Dhaka Tribune

Turn Page for photographs

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10 PHoto story | World cup fever

Photo: Vince Boisgard

Photo: Rajib Dhar

Photo: Mahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

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Photo: Rajib Dhar/Dhaka Tribune

Photo: Mahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

Photo: Quamrul Abedin

Photo: Mumit M/Dhaka Tribune

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12 Digital world | fantasy Football

The World Cup, my way Add some extra pleasure to the beautiful game by playing your own online fantasy game on the side Faisal Mahmud


ihad Ferdous, an executive at a private bank, recently got a frown from his supervisor. Instead of focusing on the numbers on the client’s file, he was caught completely engrossed, playing fantasy football on his tablet.

McDonald’s FIFA World Cup

“I just couldn’t help it. I registered with a fantasy football league named McDonald’s FIFA World Cup ahead of the World Cup, after a friend of mine told me how exciting it is. Even before the start of the World Cup, so many things are going on around there that I couldn’t get my mind off it,” said Ferdous. “World Cup – the biggest football event of all time – grabs the attention of both football lovers and non-football lovers. Things like the fantasy league adds an extra pleasure to it,” he said. “Because when you register with a fantasy league, you can create your own team, and based on your team’s performance you will get points, and with points you get rewards,” he said. “But the reward is not the point here; it’s the excitement and fun.” With a few days left to the World Cup, he said things were now getting steamy in the fantasy league. “This particular league has two excellent options: unlimited substitutions before the match kicks in, and the provision to create a private league among family and friends. I am registered with both the global league and a private

league with my friends.” Describes Ferdous: “I am monitoring the players’ performances and the prices that change ahead of the World Cup. I’m also reforming my team, chatting and debating with my friends and others in the chat rooms.” “It’s a whole package,” he says. “And when the match starts, it will only get better.”

Guardian Fantasy Football

Tanbir Roman, a young entrepreneur who is playing another fantasy league named Guardian Fantasy Football said: “The best thing about playing fantasy league is that it makes you watch all the matches.” “I am a supporter of England, so the Algeria-Australia match hardly interests me. But when you have team and players in the fantasy league, you watch every minute of the match because every move of the player gives you points if you choose the player wisely.” “It’s like gambling, but guilt free,” said Roman.

Facebook pages

The festivities for the World Cup is less in cyberspace than it is IRL (in the real world). On Facebook, football fans are busy updating their profile picture with flags of their favourite teams. Others are sharing tweets from their favourite football players. “Social media just makes it better,” said Tanjib Ahsan Saad, a student at a private university. “You can let everyone know

about your support, emotions and thoughts about a team. It feels great,” he said. Pages like Brazil Supporting Group, Viva Italia and Messi Lovers are the Facebook frontrunners, where hundreds of thousands of fans are engaging in stormy discussions over football. “It feels great to talk about your favourite players in those pages. I support Italy and I am getting all the updates regarding the team and its strategies. Fans across the world are sharing different reports where you will get to see many kind of analysis. Also, fans directly from the world cup venue, are sharing their experiences that they had while

travelling there, about the cities, stadiums and many more things.” Sarkar Afif, a young barrister said he loves to read blogs of football lovers. “These days you will find many football lovers who religiously follow the football leagues like La Liga and English Premiership. I am not one of them, however, through social media you will get to know their views and analysis over the teams and players.” Junaed Morshed, who follows all the leagues and occasionally writes his own analysis over football time to time said social media was a great platform for football lovers to share views.


App: Onefootball Onefootball is the most comprehensive football app out there. It has been given a recent revamp and what a fantastic change it is! The original app was a tad flimsy and needed plenty of work. But the update has put this app at the top of the mountain. From leagues all over the world to international competitions, you can follow scores and news regarding your favourite teams and players. The in-depth information found and presented in this app is absolutely mind-boggling. This free app for smartphones and tablets mimics the

WEEKEN D TR I BU N E | F R I DAY, J U N E 1 3, 201 4

Mahmood Hossain

experience of a full website browsing session. With a slight swipe from the left, you have your profile and the following competitions you can jump to or follow. This is where the impressive feed under each team or player flourishes. If you’re rooting for England, the team page will provide a feed of the latest and popular news from Twitter, YouTube, and other social media outlets. The layout will take some time getting used to, but for football fans it will be a cinch. A must download. Available for Apple, Android and Windows devices.

home team | The way Dhaka was

Our bygone


Football glory

Shishir Hoque reminisces the golden period of football in Bangladesh


nce every four years, the whole of Bangladesh is swept by football fever. We buy our favourite jerseys, pull out our favourite flags and sit through the night in front of our television sets to enjoy the thrills and spills of the greatest show on earth. But after the World Cup is over, the flags are pulled down, the jerseys set aside and the memories locked away for another four years.

Golden age

There was a time not too long ago when football was an integral part of our daily lives, not a mere month of celebration. We had our own clubs and idols to cheer for, to battle and to die for. We thronged the stadiums on match days, and afterwards spent all evening making detailed analyses and arguments. A full-house gallery at a domestic football match is quite rare these days. The last time we saw a fully packed stadium was five years ago, during the final of the first edition of the Super Cup between arch-rivals Abahani and Mohammedan. The golden period before the 1990s was encapsulated by a football fever in the domestic league, especially in the Dhaka League, which possessed club teams that were famous both at home and abroad. Some of these teams went on to become the most successful teams in the subcontinent. What got us to this stage and is there a way back? This is a topic often discussed in the sports arena, no one seems to be certain about. When the talk centres around the current scenario of Bangladesh football, anybody who experienced the glory days in the late 70s and 80s will not feel proud about football now falling to second place, behind cricket.

Mohammedan and Abahani playing at Dhaka Army Stadium in 1987 Photo: Syed Enam Murshed

Cricket crunch

There was a time when cricket organisers knocked on the doors of the football federation for assistance running their activities. Those days are long gone. Cricket has taken over the baton of Bangladesh sports. The rise in popularity of cricket might well be one of the reasons behind the decline of Bangladeshi football, but the federation, organisers and players themselves should also take responsibility for sliding down to 162nd position in the Fifa world rankings, when their best-ever placing was 110th in 1996. The fall in the rankings – as well as the standard of football – started in the late 90s due to irregularities in domestic football, a lack of tournaments at the grass-roots levels and an apparent failure to create star players as in the golden past – as people’s attention switched to cricket. With the passage of time, the young generation seemed to spend the majority of their focus on European league football, especially La Liga

(Spain) and the Premier League (England).

Hat-trick of factors

“When you are looking for the reasons, you must mention someone’s weakness or failure. Here, we all – especially the organisers and the players – are responsible,” said former national star striker Abdus Salam Murshedy, who is now the senior vice president of the Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF). Murshedy believes the fall in popularity of the beautiful game started after the 90s due to a shortage of tournaments amongst school and colleges. He went on to focus on three points. First and foremost, the players’ quota in universities was suddenly closed down. Now, if someone desires to pursue being a footballer besides his studies, even if he plays well he will not be able to acquire a degree from a top university without studying. Secondly, all office teams (government mills, banks,

factories) have been shut down. There was a time when Dhaka city had around 30 teams and Chittagong had 11 teams playing in the first, second and third division football leagues. Ever since the office teams became extinct, the biggest losers have been the average footballers who eventually lost their inspiration. Murshedy explains that a lack of job security puts people off: “If I want to make my son a footballer, I live in fear that he will be unemployed later on in his life because the opportunities are very limited now. “The final and third point is that the players are very much responsible for football’s plight,” he said. “Money, honour and media attention in football has been much greater in the past, but the players have failed to utilise it. They just play because they have to play but they do not love the game.” “You have to enjoy the game, get pleasure from it and must have passion for it,” he added.


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14 Legalese | With Jennifer Ashraf Kashmi


The internet modem I bought not too long ago, which came with one year’s warranty, malfunctioned within eight months of usage. I complained to the service provider, but the only

solution they had is that I purchase a new modem at the same price I paid for the first one. They said they could neither replace nor fix the device. I want to take legal action against them. What are the procedures for suing in Bangladesh?

Dear Reader: I’m sorry to hear about your situation. Unfortunately, this is an altogether common scenario being faced by the majority of consumers in Bangladesh at some point. Everyone is given the traditional spiel about how the product they are about to purchase is the best thing ever invented, how all other previous customers have had no complaints, how the product company maintains its impeccable reputation and so forth – the list is endless. Unfortunately, these assurances seem to magically be replaced by bewildered denials the moment a problem crops up. Most of the time the sellers claim no liability as they had offered a “warranty” not a “guarantee,” and the befuddled customer is left wondering where he had gone wrong to begin with. You mentioned that you wish to take legal action against the modem sellers and have also inquired about the procedures for suing in Bangladesh. Rather than being a typical lawyer and encouraging you to pursue legal action, let me begin by saying that legal action is not the correct option for you to pursue. Especially NOT in this instance. Think about it practically for a second here. What is your primary objective? You want to get your modem repaired or, failing that, get it replaced at no extra cost. How much did your modem cost? Whatever is was, I am certain that any legal action you undertake will definitely incur at least three to four times the cost of a new modem. And let’s not forget about the time delay. A frivolous suit like this will drag on for quite a while, during which you will (most likely) resort to purchasing a new modem in order to reinstate your Internet services. This is a lose-lose situation, wouldn’t you agree? Now let us consider what may be a more practical option for you. First step, inspect your documents ie any agreement you may have had with your internet service

provider, your receipts, etc. Peruse them carefully, paying particular care and attention to any terms and conditions they may contain. Once you are certain that you are entitled to a year’s warranty (in writing) and have the original receipt to confirm your purchase date, it is time to confront your modem sellers/installers. Tell them that you are legally entitled to your repairs and that they are obligated to do it for you. It is worth knowing that all businesses require certain permits and/or licences in order to lawfully operate their business. Ask to see theirs. If they refuse, tell them you will be filing a complaint against their business regarding how they are intentionally misguiding their customers. This should work like a charm to make them succumb and fix your modem. And in case it doesn’t, well then it may be time to cut your losses and seek another solution ie purchase another modem. I know this sounds disappointing but, trust me, the alternative would mean spending more money on legal action which is really not going to be helpful in the long run. To conclude, I also want to provide a bit of advice and clarify the distinction between a warranty and a guarantee, as most consumers regularly confuse the two. A warranty is general coverage on the product that includes most things that could cause the product to stop working. It is good for a specific amount of time. It is there primarily to show the customer that their product is in good condition when they acquire it, and if something happens while the product is still relatively new, they will not be out of pocket. A warranty usually only offers repair or replacement of a faulty product or parts within that product. You cannot expect to return the product and get your money back. A guarantee is more of a good will statement that whatever service or product a person or company has provided to their customer, it will meet the customer’s approval. It may or may not have a time

Modem operandi limit attached. Guarantees are usually more open-ended than a warranty, with not as many rules attached. If the product or service provided to the customer does not satisfy the customer, and meets the terms of the guarantee, the customer can expect a refund of his or her money, or an exchange of the one product for another. I hope this helps clarify the issue, and I wish you luck in your confrontation with your modem provider. Do write in to keep us updated.


Got a problem? Write to Jennifer at weekend@

Jennifer Ashraf Kashmi is a barrister and solicitor of England and Wales. She is currently Senior Partner at Legacy Legal Corporate.

Cartoon: Rio Shuvo/Dhaka Tribune

WEEKEN D TR I BU N E | F R I DAY, J U N E 1 3, 201 4

Protests in Brazil | Social construct

The hole in

Brazil’s flag I

t’s not really a hole in the flag. It’s a Brazilian flag drawn around a hole in a wall in Manaus, one of the Brazilian cities hosting the football World Cup this summer. This graffiti is a part of the massive protests that have engulfed Brazil in the months building up to the World Cup. While fans across the globe don the green-and-yellow colours of Brazil, people at home are less excited about the $11.3bn being spent on the tournament. “It’s a pity because usually the streets are decorated and everybody is excited for the World Cup,” says Natalie Gentile, a student from Rio de Janeiro. “This time that hasn’t been the case because of the protests. The streets aren’t decorated and we’re only just starting to see flags on people’s cars. The vibe is very different.” An April poll shows only 48% of Brazilians believe it was a good idea to host the World Cup, down from 79% in 2008, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal. “I wouldn’t say the population is against the World Cup. They are angry the money is not being spent on other serious issues such as healthcare and education,” says Gentile. She hopes that by the time the tournament begins people will regain excitement. “The money spent came from loans the federal government took in order to be in compliance with FIFA standards. So I disagree that money spent on stadiums could have been used for other things, because it was loaned for this sole purpose.” The protests were sparked off last year following a hike in bus fares in different cities in Brazil. The protests started peacefully and then turned violent. People got angrier and angrier, urging the government to address issues concerning local communities’ fundamental needs and protesting against the adjustments being made for the World Cup, such as the relocation of thousands of homes to make way for stadiums. As late as June 8, less than a week before the World Cup, an

anti-FIFA “Twitter storm” took place with people slamming FIFA and the World Cup on the social media site.

A growing, global trend

These protests are not the first of their kind. Similar protests were seen at the Olympics 2008 in China, and already emerging for the World Cup scheduled for 2022 in Qatar. Turkey recently lost the chance to host the 2020 Olympics as well as Euro 2020, given the “brutal police response to protests, and a series of authoritarian measures to control the media,” according to the Huffington Post. The question is: Has this protest culture reached those it is intended to address? FIFA is, after all, going ahead with the World Cup despite protests. Most people will still eagerly unite around TV screens to watch the tournament. In effect, the Brazilian protesters will go unheard.


Not everyone in the footballmad nation is crazy about hosting the games, which are costing them $11.3 billion Syeda Samira Sadeque

Photo: AFP

The future of protest

Protest culture has become a global trend, but not all culminate in a change. While Egypt, Tunisia, and Ukraine are success stories – but in Syria and Brazil the protests did not result in much. Granted, the bus fare hike that triggered the Brazil protests was eventually reduced, but the broader issue – the question of the morality of spending so much money on the World Cup – has remained unaddressed. And so the protests continue. A football aficionado here in Bangladesh, Quamrul Hassan, echoed Gentile’s thoughts. “[Brazilians] will get more attention if they protest during this great international event. What they want is to put pressure on the government, and when such cases are exposed the government feels more pressure.” Protesters may be consciously levering this international platform to press for local demands. And it may prove

beneficial to them. Even if FIFA has not cancelled the tournament, the voices of the protesters and their graffiti have reached people all over the world. It has definitely created a strong base for similar future action, and organisations have been made aware of their limits. It has, at the very least, established a “Brazilian way” of protesting. It may have been a form of graffiti for protest, but it stands as a symbol of the failure of societies to identify right from wrong. The hole, it appears, is symbolic of the gap that exists between those who are protesting against the conditions in Brazil and those who do are going ahead with the games anyway. With the amount being spent on the World Cup – both in Brazil and abroad – it is obvious that football fans the world over have much to say. If their words could be used for the right causes, we may have been able to patch many holes the world over.


WE E K E N D TR I B U N E | F R I DAY, J U N E 1 3 , 2 0 1 4


Religious prude and family feud Q

I am a 26-year-old woman who just got married 5 months ago to a man 5 years older than me. It was an arranged marriage, and we didn’t interact much before tying the knot. Now I realise we have ideological differences; I’m very religious and pray fives times a


The answer to your question is: with a bit of hard work, compromise and possibly some suffering. Marriages are a pain in the buttocks for those who are in love and know what they’re getting into. For those who go in blind and at an age where you don’t know who you are and what you want, it can be tricky. I’m surprised the powers that be thought you and your hubby would be a good match considering you could not be more different if he were purple

day, whereas he loves to drink and wants me to wear skimpy blouses. He’s very social and goes out often and I enjoy staying home, but I feel obligated to go out with him for fear that we’ll become newlyweds on the path to living completely separate lives. How can I please my husband and still be true to myself?

and you were a rock; perhaps they predicted that you would have a long, happy marriage if you got through the first couple of years intact. In order to do that, try to overlook his wild ways and continue to fraternize with his heathen friends once in a while with the understanding that he will respect your decision not to dress like a Soi Cowboy denizen and enjoy the occasional night at home. There will be resistance at first, but eventually he will realise that the key to a happy life is a happy wife and come around.


I get into a lot of fights with my sisterin-law and everyone in the family knows we can’t stand each other. Lately we’ve started to get along better. However, she’s suddenly

started sleepwalking, which has been seriously creeping me out. One night she came to my room and stared at me, then started talking gibberish. I want to talk to my brother about it but I’m afraid this will start up the feud again. What do I do?

Either your sisterin-law is a total genius or a total weirdo. I guess you will ultimately have to decide which it is, however if I had any say in the matter I’d go with genius. See, I think what she’s doing is messing with your head in a longterm bid to render you utterly insane and appear the ‘reasonable one’ in this intra-familial conflict. She just wanted you to think you two were getting along to lull you into a false sense of security before turning your world upside down with this sleepwalking stunt. Now you have no idea whether she’s playing with you or if she’s seriously a somnambulist, which is exactly how she wants it.

She’s like a big ol’ tabby playing with her new toy, so go help yourself to a big chunk of Dhaka paneer, Minnie, ‘cause the fun is just beginning! Of course, I could be wrong and maybe she’s a sensitive soul, whose inner peace you’ve disturbed with your warring ways and the only way her distress can manifest itself is through her nocturnal ramblings. Either way, it’s your duty to inform the family, but in such a way so as not to alarm her. Keep your phone on hand and video her discreetly the next time it happens, and then show it to the whole family to demonstrate your concern. If she’s sick, she’ll get the proper help she needs and if not, she’ll get a large helping of humble pie.


Dina Sobhan is a freelance writer, and cautions readers not to take her ‘advice’ here too seriously!

Got a problem? Write to Dina at weekend@ dhakatribune. com

Cartoon: Syed Rashad Imam Tanmoy/Dhaka Tribune

WEEKEN D TR I BU N E | F R I DAY, J U N E 1 3, 201 4

child labour | Post-riposte


Is child labour a Necessary evil?

Yesterday was World Day Against Child Labour. In developing countries like Bangladesh, child labour is part of a vicious cycle, with poverty as cause as well as a consequence. While most of the developed world considers it unthinkable, here the subject of child labour remains open to debate.


These children need to earn Faisal Mahmud


or people like Ajimon Begum, child labour is a fact of life. “My husband left me and our three children for another woman,” she said. “If I don’t let my eight-yearold child work at a balloon factory, I can’t afford food for my two youngest.” She said many NGOs have come to her slum to try and persuade her to send her children to school rather than to work in a factory, “but this talk won’t stave off our hunger.” Even though education is

nominally free, nearly 50% of primary school students drop out before they complete Class V because they can’t afford to pay the associated costs like transport, school uniforms and stationery – or because their families rely on them earning money and bringing it home, and can’t let them waste time in class. Ajimon’s child is just one of the 4.9 million working children in Bangladesh. That’s larger than the entire population of countries like Norway or New Zealand.

The truth is that Bangladesh isn’t equipped to provide jobs for that large a number of well-educated people anyway. We have to turn our vast young workforce into an asset by providing the technical knowledge and kind of education they need to be economically productive and to earn money for themselves and their families. These children are getting on-the-job vocational knowledge and becoming skilled labourers, something that is beneficial for the country as well as for themselves.



They deserve better from us Farhana Urmee


t is a common sight in our country to see children serving food at restaurants, working in hazardous conditions in car repair shops, or in homes as domestic help. Employers like to think that they are being kind hearted by rehabilitating impoverished children and providing them with work opportunities. But with so much youth unemployment in our country, why use children? The truth is, it is in the employers’ own interest to get cheap labour from children, who can be forced to work extra hours or in hazardous environments without

standing up for themselves. What is the government doing to realise these children’s basic human rights? Bangladesh has been able to achieve impressive results whenever it targeted a goal seriously. We have made significant progress in numerous developmental areas, such as decreasing the birth and infant mortality rates. Our country of 16 crore people has reached food selfsufficiency. With such successes elsewhere, the government must prioritise the creation of an appropriate environment for children to grow

up without fear, oppression and deprivation. There are 35 laws in Bangladesh to protect children rights, according to a report by Save the Children UK titled Child Protection and Child Rights: Current Status and Challenges. Although these laws are designed to protect them against negligence, exploitation, cruelty, abuse, and other concerns, the report says: “Bangladesh has yet to implement national policies and reform institutional structures and mechanism that could promote, protect and fulfil children’s rights.”


Photo: Mahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

WE E K E N D TR I B U N E | F R I DAY, J U N E 1 3 , 2 0 1 4

18 Stay in | Shab-e-Barat

Shab-e-Barat Rumana Habib


his evening is Shab-e-barat. In South Asia, this is one of the holiest nights of the Islamic calendar, which we celebrate with fireworks and festivities, almsgiving and visiting the dead. And of course, ruti and halwa. In the Middle East, the day is observed with fasting and not much else. Known there as Laylatul Bara’ah, this 15th day of Shaaban simply commemorates the return of Muhammad from exile to the city of Mecca. There is disagreement around the world about its religious significance. The various local names for the festival are translated as: the night of records, the night of assignment, the night of deliverance, and the night of salvation. Some have said that Akbar promoted Shab-e-Barat as a way to unify the traditions of different regional faiths, as it bears a strong resemblance to Shia and Christian festivals.

City of God

In Iran and Iraq, the day has special significance as it is the birthday of Muhammad al-Mahdi, the imam who is prophesied to return and save mankind. It is also a night of prayers of atonement. Some homes have a festive nightlong vigil and Quran recitation. In the Christian tradition of All Saints Day, people pray for their departed loved ones. They distribute soul cake, a round flat bread, to the poor. In Bangladesh, grave sites will be thronging with people, and will stay fully lit all night. We distribute ruti and halwa to the poor, or even the traditional “pejgi bread,” available in old Dhaka's Chawk Bazar. Charmingly, this is also said to be the night when the angels descend and write the destinies of men for the coming year. So everyone is on their best behavior. While its provenance is unclear, the spirit of the evening is one of sharing and remembrance. If you are celebrating today, mubarak.


Shah Nahian


o get a better sense of the culture of Rio De Janeiro – a place we’ll be seeing a lot of this month during the World Cup – check out the film City of God. The film received four Oscar nominations for directing, screenplay, editing and cinematography. Rated, 8.7 and stands proudly at #21 on the Top 250 movies of all time on IMDb, City of God can really enliven your weekend if you’re planning on staying in. It is a visceral experience that will transport you to the violent world of favelas (the Brazilian name for bostis or slums) in the 1960-80s, whose vivid subculture still dominate the landscape of Rio today. City of God is centred around two childhood friends Rocket and Li’l Zé. While Rocket wants no part in the violence and madness of the favela, Li’l Zé grows up to become a drug lord, taking out rival gang members and causing terror in the community. Based on true events, this film is the epitome of amazing foreign films. The ruthless lifestyle of gangsters is portrayed with authority. The stories are well-told, and it will by turns shock you and make you laugh, perhaps even getting you to sympathise with its devils. In Portuguese with subtitles, but worth it.



Use the numbers 1-9 to complete each of the 3x3 square grids such that each horizontal and vertical line also contains all of the digits from 1-9

Photo: Nashirul Islam/Dhaka Tribune

Last week’s sudoku solutions

WEEKEN D TR I BU N E | F R I DAY, J U N E 1 3, 201 4

Go out

Hit the stands Faisal Mahmud




Rashed Jitu of Khajideaun Ponchayet has also installed a big screen in front of the Ponchayet club a week before the world cup, but only the supporters of Argentina are allowed to watch the match here: “I want all the fans of Argentina to come here and watch the matches. I encourage them to bring flags and wear the team jerseys.” “I love to watch world cup games on the big screen in the open with many people,” said Sabrid Rozin, a resident of Azimpur. “I can’t be at the stadium where the actual match will take place, so being among many people roaring and cheering for the players gives me the closest feeling to being inside the stadium.” Tanvir Ahsan, another resident of Dhanmondi who loves the collective tension of watching matches in public, says: “When you are with many people who share the same enthusiasm for the team you support, you gain extra strength. With that you can handle the grief of losing... and of course you can share the joy of winning and bring out a victory procession.”

June 13-July 12

One of the great joys of the World Cup is watching it with friends and families. To this end, both North and South Dhaka city corporations are making arrangements to install large screens for spectators at the city’s universities, and on the corporation’s own playing fields in Mirpur, Azimpur, Ramna, Mohakhali, and Moghbazaar. Robi will also install screens at Dhaka University’s TSC, on the BUET playing-fields and on those of some private universities. Many university halls of residence will also be installing screens on their respective playing-fields, which will be open to the public. Restaurants too are getting in on the act in the hope of wooing extra customers over the tournament by setting up screens for people to watch football while they eat and drink. In fact, many ordinary people around the city are planning to install screens in public places of their own accord. Mursalin Dipu, of Azimpur Kadamtola Samity, will install a screen in front of Azimpur graveyard: “I do it so that people can watch the football matches together and share the pleasure.”

City Corporation fields, DU and BUET fields

Weekly Planner

June 13

Biking | Ride for World Cup When 4pm-6pm Where Hatirjheel What A bike ride

June 17

When 7pm-9pm Where Bangladesh

Art | Cradle of Dreams When 5:30pm Where Bronia Cafe

and Gallery, Richmond Concord, Gulshan Avenue What The opening of the 2nd Solo Art Exhibition by Rabeya Begum Lipi

June 15

Shilpakala Academy What The first production of Natto Bindoor. Written by Manoj Mitra and directed by Ashiq Rahman Ashfaqur

June 18-28 Education Fair | Creative Malaysia – Open Education Information and Scholarship Session When 9am-5pm Where Emmanuelle’s

Education | Graduate University Search Process When 3pm-4pm Where The American What The American

EducationUSA is hosting a FREE 3-Day GRE Tips & Strategies Workshop.

Theatre | Chaak Bhanga Modhu

to promote the cyclists’ favourite World Cup teams. All supporters are welcome. The route is along Hatirjheel road.

Centre centre is holding a free advisory session on post-graduate studies in the US. No prior registration is required to attend this programme; simply come to the American Centre as per the schedule.

Banquet Hall, Gulshan What Students and parents can find out everything they need to know about the Malaysian education system, international admissions, scholarships, waivers, exchange programmes, credit transfers and much more.

June 19

June 15-17

Music | EMK Happy Hour with “The Music Lab”

Workshop | GRE Tips & Strategies Workshop

When 7:30pm Where EMK Center,

When 5pm-8pm Where EMK Center,

House 5, Road 27, Dhanmondi What The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is a standardised test that is an admissions requirement for many graduate schools (Masters/PhD) in the United States. The EMK Center’s


Photo: Vince Boisgard



House 5, Road 27, Dhanmondi What The Music Lab is a platform for musicians to uphold the traditional music of this land. The music lab will showcase a vibrant combination of instruments from both the East and the West. Tickets are available for Tk300.

June 19 – 21

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WE E K E N D TR I B U N E | F R I DAY, J U N E 1 3 , 2 0 1 4

20 Interview| Mamunul Islam

Captain Mamunul on the World Cup Bangladesh national football captain Mohammad Mamunul Islam shares his first football memory, and talks about the local scene Shishir Hoque Barcelona and Bundesliga’s Bayern and Dortmund. Brazil have won many World Cups [five], and they had legendary footballers such as Pelé, Zico and Socrates, for whom many here started supporting them. A huge group of Argentina fans were born because of Maradona and his Argentine team’s triumph in 1986 and for being runners-up the next edition.

Who do you think will win the World Cup this year? I think a Latin American country will lift the trophy. It will either be Brazil or Argentina. History is on their side because no team from outside Latin America has ever won the World Cup when it was hosted by a Latin American country. Is this not the year for the European teams? I don’t think so. The climate is a huge factor in Brazil and European teams have struggled to cope with the weather there. But, among the non-Latin American countries, Spain or Germany have the best chance. These two teams have the power and strength to beat the weather. Who are you supporting? Argentina are my all-time favourite. I have supported them since childhood. I believe, to win a World Cup, a team must have balance between attack and defence, 100% commitment and team spirit. Argentina have very good attacking line-ups and as long as they do their homework perfectly in defence and midfield, they are the favourite. Why do we have so many supporters of Brazil and Argentina in Bangladesh? It is like Bangladesh’s Mohammedan and Abahani, Kolkata’s East Bengal and Mohun Bagan, Spain’s Real Madrid and

An Abahani-Mohammedan match was once the talk of the town, but today’s youth doesn’t follow that derby anymore. I think the young generation still follows Bangladesh football. The supporters are still mostly divided by two groups: Mohammedan and Abahani. They just don’t come to the stadium because the teams aren’t the starstudded squads they used be. Messi, Ronaldo or Neymer: Who do you think will rock the World Cup this year? Messi is my favourite player. Neymer is not yet a superstar but he is on his way to becoming one. He is a match-winning player and he can change a whole game. He can play a vital role in Brazil winning the trophy. He proved in the Confederation Cup that he is capable of doing that. So I will support Messi to rock the World Cup but I wouldn’t mind if it is Neymer. I also like Maria, Aguero, Higuain, and Mascherano.

difference is huge. Cricket took the lead against football after Bangladesh played the World Cup, and the nation is proud for them. So am I. The financial and other support cricket gets from the government is not the same for football. The main difference between football and cricket is the earnings of the players and the interest of sponsors. What can the Bangladesh Football Federation do to nurture local talent? The quota of the foreign players should be reduced to three from seven in the league. It would create more opportunity for local players to be in the top flight. Football should be regularised in every district, and every top player should play in district tournaments. If I play in Chittagong, the young players from there will be encouraged.

Every club should have age-level squads. Also, we need more dedicated football academies in Bangladesh. If you could change something about the state of football in Bangladesh, what would it be? I would change every system and rule. I would make sure every national footballer gets paid every month by giving them a contract for 3-4 years, so that they would give their best for the team. Bangladesh is currently 162 in the Fifa ranking. Its highest ranking was 110 in 1996. How can we climb back up? The ranking depends on how many international matches a country plays. We play at most five matches on average a year. But look at how many games other countries play. If we play 20-25 matches every year, our ranking would be around 130-135.


What was the first World Cup you watched? As far as I remember, it was the 1994 World Cup. The memories are not clear though. I was 6 or 7 years old and had just started to learn about football. I was more excited about waving the flag of Argentina than enjoying the matches, but I cried for Maradona when he got suspended. He is the reason I started supporting Argentina. From a football nation, Bangladesh has turned into a cricket nation in the last two decades. Why did this happen? I don’t want to divide cricket and football. If anyone wins, it will be sport. How many countries play cricket and how many are involved in football? The Photos: Mumit M

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Weekend 26  
Weekend 26