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Arson attempt at the book fair
Miscreants tried to set a book stall on re at the Amar Ekushey Book Fair in Dhaka. PAGE 32
INSIDEJMB behind Hindu priest murder, not ISOne day after the killing of a Hindu priest, police have arrested three peo-ple two of them members of JMB and the other from Shibir. PAGE 3
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016 | Falgun 11, 1422, Jamadiul Awal 13, 1437 | Regd No DA 6238, Vol 3, No 308 | www.dhakatribune.com | 32 pages | Price: Tk10
Police vehicle on wrong side kills uni studentn Kamrul HasanA police vehicle speeding on the wrong side of the road has killed a private university student at Dhakas Banani.
Riaz Uddin Tipu, a BBA nal-year student at ASA University, was on his motorcycle when a minibus without a number plate, requisitioned by po-lice, hit him yesterday afternoon. He was rushed to a hospital where doc-tors pronounced him dead.
Tipu, 26, worked for mobile com-pany Oppo. His colleague Bitin, who was pillion riding, was seriously in-jured, Banani police stations Inspec-tor (investigation) Waheduzzaman told the Dhaka Tribune.
They were on their way to Radis-son hotel to attend a programme.
Waheduzzaman con rmed that police had requisitioned the vehicle. We have detained the driver and
will investigate why he was on the wrong side, he said, declining fur-ther comment.
Witnesses faulted police. They said the minibus, rushing towards Mohakhali yover, hit Tipus motor-cycle when he was making space for another vehicle.
He could have been saved had police stopped. But they sped away after running over the bike, a wit-ness, seeking anonymity, said.
Students of nearby private uni-versities blocked the road for about two hours after the accident. Police brie y detained three of Tipus col-leagues from there. The agitators left after police promised stern actions against culprits.
Several witnesses questioned police action. How can you expect people to abide by tra c laws when police choose to drive on the wrong side of the road? a man said. l
PM slams Mahfuz Anam, says he should quit n UNB Coming down heavily on the Dai-ly Star Editor Mahfuz Anam for publishing DGFI-supplied reports during the army-led caretaker gov-ernment, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said he should quit after his confession if he has a little bit of self-dignity.
This editor has confessed to making a mistake by publishing those DGFI-supplied reports, but people, Awami League leaders and activists, the business community, students and teachers, and my fam-ily and I had to pay the price for that mistake. Why didnt he show the courage by resigning? If he has the guts, then he should resign, she said at a meeting organised by Awami League marking Language Martyrs' Day and International Mother Lan-guage Day at Bangabandhu Interna-
tional Conference Centre (BICC) in the capital yesterday.
Hasina wanted to know why those news items provided by the DGFI were published. A
newspaper like the Daily Star should carry the news as supplied by the DGFI? Who is that
mad there to believe that? The Daily Star is very much choosy about English. It proves that DGFI people are more knowledgeable than the Daily Star.
She recalled a recent incident at the BBC which carried false news items on British MPs and ministers. "When the report was found false, the BBC o ered apology and the people involved in that story all re-signed.
Hasina said what the editor has so far written with the pretence of honesty were all fraudulences and
PAGE 2 COLUMN 1
ATM CARD FORGERY
More foreigners, bankers involvedn Mohammad Jamil KhanPolice yesterday arrested a foreign-er and three local bank o cials in Dhaka in connection with the re-cent ATM card forgery.
Investigators suspect that two more foreigners and several other local bankers could have also had a hand to play with the recent ATM card forgery scam.
Polices Deputy Inspector Gen-eral (DIG) Monirul Islam, head of the newly formed Counter Terror-ism and Transnational Crime Unit, said these in a press brie ng after arresting the four suspected debit card forgers yesterday.
The other suspected bankers mainly work in the information technology (IT) or card divisions of a number of private commercial banks.
The passport seized from the foreigners possession shows he is Piotr Szczepan Mazurek, who came to Bangladesh with the Polish pass-port on business visa a year ago. The three bank o cials are Mak-sud, Rezaul Karim Shahin and Re-faz Ahmed Roni all from the City Banks card division.
They were shown arrested in the case led by the United Commercial
PAGE 2 COLUMN 1Detectives escort suspects of the recent ATM booth skimming to the DMP media centre on Minto Road yesterday. Third from right is a foreigner with a Polish passport and a German ID card, while two others in handcu s beside him are bank o cials. Another detained suspect, also a banker, is not in the picture MEHEDI HASAN
Rohingyas stay put in Myanmar campsAfter Husainas 20-year-old son boarded a boat to escape poverty and discrimination in Myanmars Rakhine State, she heard nothing from him for seven months. PAGE 22
News2DTTUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016
More foreigners, bankers involvedBank Limited with the Banani po-lice station in Dhaka on February 14. Later, a Dhaka court granted police six days remand for each of them.
Investigators also seized a Ger-man identity card from Piotr that has a di erent name. In prima-ry quizzing, Piotr said two other foreign nationals were part of the racket but have left the country be-fore the scam came to air on Feb-ruary 12.
Police did not give the full de-tails of the suspected foreigners but said they were from Romania and Spain.
Piotr came to Bangladesh as a manpower businessman and has sent a number of people to the Eastern European countries. He came to Bangladesh on December 13, 2014 on a one-year business visa.
At rst he used to live in a hotel
named Holiday Planet. A couple of months into his stay in Bangla-desh, he married the receptionist of the hotel and moved in with her. They had their rst baby boy just seven days ago.
He has been involved with card forgery under the cover of his man-power business.
In the past, he has forged cred-it cards belonging to people living abroad. This is the rst time he has forged cards belonging to local people, police said.
An estimated Tk20 lakh is claimed to have been withdrawn using forged local cards. But we still are not sure how much cash was withdrawn using forged international cards, said DIG Monirul.
Sources said that police had also learned that Piotr is wanted in Ru-mania, Russia and Bulgaria for sim-ilar crime. l
Non-MPO teachers go on fast unto death n UNB Non-MPO teachers yesterday went on a fast-unto-death strike in the capital demanding that their job be brought under the Monthly Pay Or-der (MPO) facilities.
Under the banner of Non-MPO Bangladesh Shikkhak Oikya
Parishad, the teachers were observing the inde nite hunger strike in front of National Press Club in the capital.
Pradip Chandra Roy, presi-dent of the Oikya Parishad, said although they were appointed following proper procedures ve years ago, their jobs are yet to be
brought under the MPO facilities because of a circular of the Educa-tion Ministry issued on November 12, 2011.
He said they have already submitted a memorandum to the prime minister, the education minister and the education secretary requesting them to
withdraw the circular. Pradip said non-MPO teachers
and employees have been passing their days in hardship for years.
Claiming that about 15,000 non-MPO teachers appointed in di er-ent educational institutions are participating in the hunger strike, he warned that they would contin-
ue their programme until the can-cellation of the circular, which cre-ates impediment to nationalisation of their jobs.
The organisations General Secretary Kamal Hossain and Or-ganising Secretary Musta zur Rahman joined the hunger strike programme as well. l
PM slams Mahfuz Anam, says he should quituntrue which were aimed at de-stroying the country.
Hasina said truth cannot be hid-den, it will ultimately surface. The Daily Star editors original face has been exposed.
Recently on a talk show, Mahfuz Anam admitted that running reports on Sheikh Hasina based on informa-tion fed by DGFI without scrutiny was his biggest mistake.
Hasina also said if the editor con-fessed to publishing or writing those reports out of fear, then he could not do fearless journalism. I dont have anything to say if you [Anam] were sold out and wrote on the basis of [your] relations, she said.
The prime minister also said if the editors were involved in the conspiracy of prolonging their [then military-backed govt] power by killing democracy, obstructing the democratic rights of people then you will be tried one day like the trial of
war criminals. Which path will you choose? she asked.
Hasina recalled that Mahfuz An-ams hectic e ort was there to prove her corrupt, but the fact is that even the World Bank could not prove that.
The prime minister also sharply criticised those demanding with-drawal of the cases led against the Daily Star editor.
She asked those who demand the withdrawal of cases to feel the pain of the solitary con nement she suf-fered for 11 months, when she was not even allowed to meet her rela-tives during the Eid time.
Praising the Awami League lead-ers who raised their voice against the false news of the Daily Star, she re-gretted that many leaders were still mum. Why is there such a fear just to tell the truth? she asked.
Hasina also questioned about the contributions of Mahfuz Anam to the Liberation War. We were also
university students our academic activities were hampered due to the Liberation War, but that editor went to Pakistan (then West Pakistan) so that his study was not hampered.
She also said he, however, went to Kolkata and got assigned to write materials in English as he knew a bit of English. And this is his Liberation War and this is how he is a freedom ghter.
Chaired by Deputy Leader of the House Syeda Sajeda Chowdhury, the function was addressed, among others, by Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed, Agriculture Minister Matia Chowdhury, Public Administration Minister and AL General Secretary Syed Ashraful Islam, Mahbubul Alam Hanif, MP, Relief and Disaster Man-agement Minister Mofazzal Hossain Chowdhury Maya, Jahangir Kabir Nanak, MP, Abu Sayeed Al Mahmud Swapan, MP, SM Kamal Hossain and Kamal Ahmed Mazumder, MP. l
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina addresses a discussion on International Mother Language Day, organised by Awami League at the capitals Bangabandhu International Convention Centre yesterday BSS
Video testimony to help convict Bangladeshi human tra cker n Thomson Reuters Foundation, Mumbai
The video testimony of a Bangla-deshi tra cking victim rescued from an Indian brothel will help con-vict her alleged tra cker, and such depositions should become a part of e orts by both countries to curb tra cking, activists and lawyers say.
The 24-year-old woman, who was tra cked by her husband and rescued from a Mumbai brothel in 2014, gave her deposition last week by video link from Dhaka. It is probably the rst time this was done in a cross-border tra cking case, said lawyer Kalpana Heere in Mumbai.
Typically, when the victim is from Bangladesh, she is repatriated after 21 days, and while we have her statement, it is not as powerful as a deposition in person, said Sanjay Macwan of the non-pro t Inter-national Justice Mission, which helped set up the video conference with the victim.
The video conference is now our great hope of bringing more
convictions against tra ckers in cross-border cases if we can nd a way to do it cheaply and easily, he said.
South Asia, with India at its centre, is the worlds fastest-grow-ing and second-biggest region for human tra cking after Southeast Asia, according to the United Na-tions O ce for Drugs and Crime (UNODC). Bangladesh is a major source and transit country, with thousands of women, girls and young men being tra cked to In-dia and some Gulf Arab nations.
Tra ckers or agents often take advantage of poor communi-ties, luring victims from villages with promises of good jobs and a better life in cities, only to sell them into forced marriage or bond-ed work as prostitutes or maids.
More than a quarter of the wom-en and girls who are tra cked to Mumbai, Indias nancial hub, are from Bangladesh, activists say. India signed an agreement with Bangladesh last year to strengthen cooperation and information shar-ing to ensure speedier investiga-
tions and prosecutions of tra ck-ers and organised crime syndicates in either country.
Of the 5,466 tra cking cases in all of India in 2014, while charges were led in almost 95% of cases, the conviction rate was only 45%, according to the Indias National Crime Records Bureau.
In cross-border cases, it can be hard to convict the tra cker after the victim has been repatriated, said Heere.
The victim is the star witness, and if we cant question her in court, then it is di cult to bring a conviction, she said. With a vid-eo conference, we have very good chances.
At least 25 victims of tra cking who were repatriated to Bangla-desh are willing to testify through similar video depositions if al-lowed, Macwan said.
We are already using video depositions in terror cases. We want to show that tra cking is just as serious, and victims of tra ck-ing are just as important in the eyes of the law, he said. l
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016
Fakhrul himself to submit explanation on his remarks on judiciaryn Ashif Islam Shaon The Appellate Division of the Su-preme Court has ordered BNP act-ing secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir to submit his expla-nation on his recent comment on the judiciary. Tomorrow.
A ve-member bench headed
by Chief Justice SK Sinha passed the order yesterday, rejecting the plea to submit the explanation by Fakhrul's lawyer.
Mirza Fakhrul, at a meeting of BNPs Sylhet unit on February 7, said the government was trying to con-trol the judiciary. He claimed that there was no democracy in the coun-
try, nor an independent judiciary.He further said murder, en-
forced disappearance and abduc-tion had been on sharp rise since the government took the o ce by force. The court xed February 22 for the submission of the written explanation.
As the court said Fakhrul should
explain his statement by himself Fakrul's lawyers then sought time.
The apex court did not hear Fakhrul's leave-to-appeal petition against the High Court ruling on his bail plea.
The High Court on November 24 granted three months bail to Mirza Fakhrul in three cases of violence,
led on January 4, 5 and 6 last year, accusing him and several other party leaders and activists of vandalising and torching vehicles in the capital.
Fakhrul then led the leave-to-appeal petition with the Chamber Judge of the Supreme Court, who forwarded the petition to a regular appeal bench for hearing. l
Police: JMB behind Hindu priest murder, not ISn Mohammad Jamil Khan in Dhaka and Sazzadur Rahman Sazzad in Panchagarh
One day after the killing of a Hindu priest in Panchagarh, police have arrested three peo-ple two of them members of JMB and the other from Shibir.
However, police have yet to be sure if they were really be-hind Sundays murder of Jogge-shwar Roy, 50, priest of the Son-to Gaurio temple in Debiganj area, and injuring his neigh-bour Gopal Chandra Roy, 35, who tried to save the deceased.
The men arrested are: Ja-maatul Mujahideen Bangla-desh (JMB)s Khalilur Rahman, 45, and Babul Hossain, 40, both also accused in the 2005 series bomb blast cases; and Jahangir Alam, 25, member of Jamaat-e-Islamis student front Islami Chhatra Shibir.
Local police said yesterday that they were interrogating three suspects and would show them arrested in the priest murder case if their in-volvement is found.
From an analysis of the crime scene, police have con-cluded that the murder was carried out by JMB. There are
similarities between the Hin-du priest's murder and killings of Italian Cesare Tavella, and Japanese Hoshi Kunio. In all cases, unidenti ed assailants came on motorbikes.
Like most recent killings of liberal activists and religious preachers, militant group Is-lamic State (IS) has claimed responsibility for this murder as well, but police say the IS is not active in Bangladesh.
Police also questioned how the SITE Intelligence Group, the US-based portal that tracks militant activities, is always the rst to report such claims.
Asked about ISs claims, polices Deputy Inspector Gen-eral (DIG) Monirul Islam, head of the newly-formed Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime unit, said: In previous cases, despite SITE reporting IS claims, the arrested con-fessed but none of them ever said they had any links with the IS.
He continued: SITE is basi-cally a pro table organisation who cooks up such statements.
Meanwhile, a group of De-biganj residents yesterday formed a human chain at the Bijoy Chattar protesting the killing of the priest. l
Writ seeks ban on Justice Manik's remarks in median Ashif Islam ShaonA Supreme Court lawyer has sought ban on the publication or broadcasting of former Jus-tice Shamsuddin Choudhury Manik's remarks on judiciary in the media.
SM Zul qure Ali, the law-yer, led a writ petition with the High Court yesterday, seeking the ban.
On February 18, Zul qure wrote a letter to former Justice Manik, asking him to apolo-gise before the nation for what he dubbed as derogatory re-marks against the chief justice and the judiciary.
The write, led by anoth-er apex court practitioner
Ehsanur Rahman on behalf of Zul qure, sought the HC's directives on the information secretary to prevent media from airing the former jus-tice's remarks on the judiciary.
Ehsanur said that the media have the constitutional right to enjoy freedom or expres-sion and speech but with some restrictions, which have not been followed in case of news on Justice Manik's statements.
Apart from the secretary to the Information Ministry, the writ also made the chairmen of the Bangladesh Telecom Regu-latory Commission (BTRC) and Bangladesh Press Council, and the director general of Bangla-desh Television defendants. l
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016News4DT
Bangladeshs deforestation rate at 0.18%n Tribune ReportBangladesh losses 0.18% of its for-ests annually due to environmen-tal and human causes, parliament heard on Monday.
In reply to a query in the House, Environment and Forests Minister Anwar Hussain said the country currently has 2.3 million hectares of forest cover, of which 84% is natural forest.
Replying to another query, the minister said forests cover just 15.5% of the countrys total area.
Agriculture Minister Matia Chowdhury said according to the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics some 204,366 hectares of land in Bangladesh remain uncultivated. l
Luggage lost is exceptional incidentn Tribune ReportCivil Aviation and Tourism Minister Rashed Khan Menon yesterday told the parliament that baggage lost or dam-aged in the Aviation Industry is exceptional incidents.
Replying to a query, the minister said sometimes pas-sengers luggage go into wrong destination or remain un-identi ed due to the limitation of handling passengers.
It is not possible to identify all those damaged or lost baggage through system, he said adding that in those cases incidents of lost or damaged baggage are resolved through compensation following International rules.
The minister also said 36 luggage have been lost over the past three months. l
BCS exam to include 100 marks on Liberation Warn Tribune ReportThe government is working on in-cluding 100 marks on questions about the 1971 Liberation War in the BCS examination, said Libera-tion War A airs Minister AKM Mo-zammel Huq.
In reply to a query, he told the parliament yesterday that the questions would be about the struggle for independence since Pakistans independence from the British rule in 1947 and the ninth-month liberation war in 1971.
BCS examination is a competi-tive test conducted by the Public Service Commission to recruit cad-res for various government jobs.
The minister said the initiative to include questions on the war was aimed at enabling the next generation to remember the histo-ry of the war.
He said the incumbent govern-ment had stated the de nition of the liberation war as no clear de -nition existed earlier.
Replying to another query, Mo-zammel said the monthly allow-ance of freedom ghters would be increased to Tk10,000 from the ex-isting Tk8,000.
He said the government was considering increasing the month-ly allowance for wounded freedom ghters and also those who had re-ceived awards. l
Ansarullah planned attacks on major establishmentsn Arifur Rahman RabbiBanned militant out t Ansarullah Bangla Team, allegedly involved in killing bloggers and secular writ-ers, has been planning large-scale attacks on major establishments in Bangladesh, investigators claim.
Documents, outlining possible future attacks, were seized dur-ing raids on Ansarullah hideouts at Badda and Mohammadpur by newly-formed Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime Unit (CT) and the Detective Branch, CT chief Additional Commissioner Monirul Islam said.
On Friday, police arrested sus-
pected Ansarullah members Kalam alias Shahin alias Jamal, 26, and Shah Alam alias Salahuddin alias Hiron, 30, in Badda. A Dhaka court yesterday granted police ve days to interrogate them.
We have already gleaned im-portant information from them, Monirul said.
Based on information provided by the two, the joint team raided a at in Nabodoy housing in Mo-hammadpur and recovered a huge cache of bombs and explosives.
Monirul skirted a direct reply to a speci c question about the mili-tant groups possible targets. Our primary investigation found that
the seized explosives might have been used to bring down a number of important establishments, he told the Dhaka Tribune, without specifying.
He dubbed the joint teams 30-hour raid on Ansarullah dens in Badda and Mohammadpur the most successful counter-terror-ism drive, claiming that it had foiled the militant out ts sabotageplans.
Most of the Ansarullah lead-ers and members are on the run, the police o cer said. I hope the militant out t will never be able to carry out subversiveactivities. l
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016News 5
Coxs Bazar 29 22Dhaka 34 20 Chittagong 29 22 Rajshahi 33 16 Rangpur 31 16 Khulna 32 20 Barisal 32 21 Sylhet 32 15T E M P E R AT U R E F O R E C A S T F O R TO DAY
D H A K ATODAY TOMORROW
SUN SETS 5:58PM SUN RISES 6:26AM
YESTERDAYS HIGH AND LOW33.8C 16.4C
Patuakhali RajshahiTUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23Source: IslamicFinder.org
Fajr: 5:10am | Zohr: 12:13amAsr: 4:21pm | Magrib: 6:00pmEsha: 7:28pm
IMPORT OF PETROLEUM PRODUCTS
15 days given to scrutinise tender documentsn Aminur Rahman RaselAn evaluation committee has been tasked with submitting a report within 15 working days on the im-port of petroleum products for Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation.
The seven-member commit-tee, led by a director of BPC, was formed yesterday to evaluate the documents submitted by the tender
bidders for the import.BPC Director Mosleh Uddin said
12 out of the 16 international bid-ders have quali ed. They include: Emirates National Oil Company (sin.) Pte. Ltd (ENOC), China-based Petrochina (Singapore) Pte. Ltd; Unipec Singapore Pte. Ltd, Malay-sia-based PETRONAS and US-based ExxonMobil.
On February 11, the interna-
tional tender was oated for the import, doing away with the gov-ernment-to-government (G2G) ne-gotiations, to make pro ts in the context of a slumping global oil market.
BPC Chairman AM Badrudduja told the Dhaka Tribune that the cost of import would either be covered from BPCs fund or sourced from the state co er.
BPC will procure of 9.875 mil-lion barrels [1.32 million tonnes] of import re ned diesel [GASOIL] and 1.440 million barrels [180,000 tonnes] of Jet A-1
The government believes that importing oil through internation-al tenders will lower the premium rate. State-owned BPC incurred huge losses after introducing the G2G system in 2003-04. l
Eight fake DB police held n Tribune ReportThe Dhaka Metropolitan Polices Detective Branch (DB) yesterday arrested eight members of an in-ter-district robber gang that spe-cialised in posing as police detec-tives in order to commit acts of robbery on the highways.
Long wanted by the police, the gang faces arrest warrants at many police stations in the capital.
Members of the gang posed as DB policemen on the highways, halting vehicles, looting passengers and leaving their victims to fend for themselves on lonely stretches of the road, DMP Deputy Commissioner (Media) Maruf Hossain Sarder said.
The gang is suspected of in-
volvement in committing high-way robberies over a span of eight years, he added.
The DB impersonators were tak-en into custody in Matuail in the Jatrabari area of the capital as they prepared to carry out a robbery.
The arrestees have been identi- ed as Shahidul Islam Majhi alias Shahid alias Kamrul Majhi, Yusuf Kazi, Abdul Malek, Malek Chowd-hury, Jahangir Alam alias Jahangir, Yasin Miah, Badol and Abbas Ali.
Lethal weapons, walkie-talkies, handcu s, DB jackets and a mi-cro-bus were seized by the police.
A case has been led with Jatra-bari police station and legal action is under way in this connection, police sources said. l
KALIHATI POLICE SHOOTING
HC asks what actions have been taken against 13 copsn Ashif Islam Shaon The High Court has sought details on what punitive actions had been taken against 13 policemen who were found responsible for a clash at Tangails Kalihati upazila that left four people dead.
The inspector general of police and the DIG of Dhaka Range have been asked to submit a progress re-port on this regard by March 7.
Following submission of two probe reports, which were pre-pared on an earlier court order, the High Court bench of Justice Md Moinul Islam Chowdhury and Justice Md Iqbal Kabir passed the order yesterday.
On September 18 last year, four people were killed and 50 others were injured when police alleged-ly opened re and charged trun-
cheons on some people demon-strating against the torture of a youth and his mother in Kalihati upazila.
On September 21, Advocate Sal-ma Ali, executive director Bangla-desh Mahila Ainjibi Samity, led a writ petition over the incident. Af-ter hearing the petition, the court asked that all probe reports con-ducted in the incident be submitted before the court within 60 days.
The court also wanted to know if police had dispersed the agitating people in accordance with the law.
Deputy Attorney General Mot-ahar Hossain Saju said the police had formed two probe committees which submitted their reports to the Police Headquarters on Decem-ber 5, which were then submitted to the High Court after ten days.
The reports were placed before
the High Court bench yesterday.Motahar said the probe commit-
tees recommended in their reports that various departmental actions including suspension be taken against the 13 policemen.
Those who were found respon-sible for the incident include then acting SP of Tangail district police Sanjay Sarker, Tangail (North) Ad-ditional SP Mohammad Sharifur Rahman, constable of DSB Md Mahtab Uddin, ex-OC of Kalihati police station Md Shahidul Islam, SIs Md Abul Bashar and Md Salim Uddin, and Constables Md Aminul Islam, Ziaul Haque and Tamal Chandra Deb.
Other policemen include Ghatail police stations ex-OC Md Mokhlesur Rahman, ASI Md Har-un-or-Rashid, SI Md Omar Faruk and SI Monsup Ali. l
Cabinet okays new pay scale of judgesn Tribune ReportThe cabinet has approved a new pay scale for the judicial service, with changes similar to the eighth pay scale for public servants.
The nod came at a regular cab-inet meeting yesterday, chaired by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
Judges would get their new ba-sic salaries from July 2015 and oth-er allowances from July 2016 sim-ilar to how civil servants are getting paid under the new scale, Cabinet Secretary Mohammad Sha ul Alam told reporters.
According to the new structure, the basic salary of a senior district judge will be equal to that of a sec-retary. Their new pay scale will be Tk78,000 from previous Tk40,000.
The basic pay of a district judge will be Tk70,925 to Tk76,350, up from Tk36,000 to Tk39,600.
The basic salary of an additional district judge will be Tk62,350 from the previous Tk32,000, and joint district judges will get Tk54,370 instead of the previous Tk28,000.
A senior assistant judge will be paid Tk44,450 from Tk23,000 and an assistant judge will get Tk30,935 from previous Tk16,000.
Basic salaries of senior district judge will see a 95% raise, district judge 97%, additional district judge 94.84%, joint district judge 94.18%, senior assistant judge 93.26% and assistant judge 93.34%, Sha ul said.
He said pension facility for the judicial service will also be raised to 90% from the previous 80% in light of the eight national pay scale.
They will also get 20% of basic as bonus for Pohela Boishakh festi-val and other allowances. l
Bangladesh police, US to team up to curb terrorismn Tribune ReportThe countrys police department and the United States have expressed ea-gerness to continue their coopera-tion for combating terrorism.
They agreed that intelligence and technological assistance would be exchanged between them and the cooperation would be strengthened through the ex-change of training, a press release of Bangladesh Police said.
According to the press release, US Ambassador to Bangladesh Marcia Stephens Bloom Bernicat said this during a meeting with In-spector General of Police AKM Sha-hidul Haque at Bangladesh Police headquarters yesterday morning.
The US envoy also praised the initiatives of the ongoing commu-nity policing activities.
The two countries could combat issues like cybercrimes, transna-tional crimes and money launder-ing through cooperation, she said. l
DMP detectives present eight DB impersonators, arrested from Jatrabaris Matuail area, in front of the citys Detective Branch o ce yesterday MEHEDI HASAN
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016News6DT
Shakila granted bailn Ashif Islam Shaon The High Court yesterday granted bail to Supreme Court lawyer Shak-ila Farzana in two cases led over nancing militant organisation Shaheed Hamza Brigade.
The bench of Justice Farid Ahmed and Justice AKM Zahirul Hoque passed the order, disposing a rule over the bail order.
The court granted bail to the SC lawyer until the charge in the cases are framed, Shakilas lawyer ZI Khan Panna told the Dhaka Tribune.
Shakila was arrested on Au-gust 18 last year from outside her chamber along with two of her as-sociates. The trio claimed that they had deposited money to an ac-count which was taken as advance
and that they were unaware of the owner of the account.
The account is owned by Mon-iruzzaman Don, a top leader of mil-itant group Shahid Hamza Brigade now in jail.
The RAB said the Chit-tagong-based group was formed in November 2013 by former members of Islami Chhatra Shibir, the student wing of Jamaat-e-Islami, Hefaz-at-e-Islam and other militant groups.
Shakila is the incumbent joint general secretary of the Supreme Court wing of Bangladesh Jati-yatabadi Ainjibi Forum, a pro-BNP lawyers body.
She is the daughter of Syed Wa-hidul Alam, a former BNP whip and lawmaker from Chittagong during 2001-06 tenure. l
Cricketer Shahadat, wife indictedn Md Sanaul Islam TipuA Dhaka court yesterday framed charges against former national cricketer Shahadat Hossain and his wife Jesmine Jahan Nitto in a case led against the couple for alleg-edly torturing their 11-year-old do-mestic help.
Judge Tanjina Ismail of Dhaka Women and Children Repression Prevention Tribunal 5 xed March 20 for recording deposition of wit-nesses in the case.
The couple, currently on bail, pleaded not guilty after the pros-ecution read out the charges brought against them.
On February 4, the same court accepted the charge sheet against the couple and scheduled the hear-ing for charge farming yesterday.
The charge sheet was submit-ted on December 29 last year byMirpur Model police station OCMd Sha qur Rahman, who isalso the investigation o cer of the case.
Shahadat was sent to jail by a Dhaka court after he surrendered before the court on October 6, two days after police arrested his wife Nitto.
Later, Shahadat secured bail from the High Court on December 8 on the grounds of health issues, while Nitto was granted bail by a Dhaka court on December 1.
According to the case, on Sep-tember 6 last year, a journalist named Khandkar Mozammel Haque found the victim, who used to work as a housemaid at Shaha-dats residence, on a road in Sang-
badik Colony at Pallabi in the cap-ital.
The child was covered in bruises and said she had escaped her em-ployers residence unable to endure their beatings and torture anymore.
Later, Mozammel took the vic-tim to police and led the case against the couple with Mirpur Model police station under the Women and Children Repression Prevention Act, 2000.
On September 20, the victim gave judicial statement before Dha-ka Metropolitan Magistrate Snig-dha Rani Chakraborty on how she was abused by the cricketer and his wife.
Following the case, Shahadat was suspended from all forms of cricket by Bangladesh Cricket Board on September 13. l
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016News 7
Two more placed on remand in Habiganj killing case n Our Correspondent, HabiganjA Habiganj court yesterday put two people on di erent terms of remand in connection with the killing of four schoolboys at Sundrateki village, Bahubal upazila.
Senior Judicial Magistrate Kou-shik Ahmed Khandaker placed Ha-
dibur Rahman Arju on a seven-day remand while Abdul Bashir on a ve-day remand.
Earlier, police produced Arju and Bashir before the court on Friday with a 10-day remand prayer for each.
A total of six people have so far been arrested in connection with the killing of the four schoolboys.
Of them, Jewel Miah and his younger brother Rubel Miah gave confessional statements before the court under section 164 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
Meanwhile, a probe body was formed to investigate whether po-lice personnel were reluctant to nd out the boys after their missing
complaint was led. Habiganj police super Joydeb Ku-
mar Bhodro told the Dhaka Tribune that the probe committee led by Ad-ditional Police Super Shahidul Islam would submit its report soon.
Four schoolboys who had gone missing from Sundrateki village in Bahubal upazila on February 12
were found buried at the village on February 17.
Police recovered the bodies of Zakaria Ahmed Shuvo, 8, son of Wahid Miah, his two cousins Tajel Miah, 10, son of Abdul Aziz, Mon-ir Miah, 7, son of Abdal Miah and Ismail Hossain, 10, son of Abdul Quadir. l
Three held with rearms n Tribune Report The police arrested three peo-ple in possession of rearms from Paharika re-fueling station premises, Akbarshah police sta-tion in the port city yesterday.
The arrested were identi- ed as Md Selim, 20, Moshar-raf Hossain, 42, and Jahirul Islam Manik, 25.
The police also seized two locally manufactured LGs, one single shooter gun and
two locally-manufactured one-barrel guns from their possession.
During primary inter-rogation, the trio confessed to have been involved with dealing in arms trade. They also admitted that they kept the arms in their possession to sell them o . A case was lodged against the trio under the arms act, said Sadip Ku-mar Das, o cer-in-charge of Akbarshah police station. l
COCAINE HAUL CASE
Khan Jahan Ali Groups chairman sent to jail n FM Mizanur Rahaman, Chittagong
A court in Chittagong yester-day sent Nur Mohammed, chairman of Khan Jahan Ali Group, to jail after rejecting his bail prayer in much-talked about cocaine haul case.
Additional Deputy Commis-sioner (Prosecution) of Chit-tagong Metropolitan Police Kazi Muttaki Ibn Minan saod: The court of Metropolitan Abdul Kader sent accused Nur Mo-hammed to jail after rejection his bail petition in cocaine case.
Earlier, Nur Mohammed was put on remand in two times after his arrest by the elite force Rapid Action Bat-talion on January 5.
Currently, the much talked-about cocaine haul case being investigated by RAB 7s Addi-tional Superintendent of Po-lice Mohiuddin Faruquee fol-lowing a court direction.
On December 7, last year, a court in Chittagong ordered the RAB to lunch further in-vestigation into the case re-jecting charge sheet pressed by CMPs Detective Branch.
Accusing eight persons, in-cluding two Bangladeshi-born UK expatriates, DBs Assistant Commissioner (AC) Moham-med Kamruzzaman had sub-mitted the charge sheet before the court on November 19, last. But the IO then dropped the
name of Nur Mohammed from the charge sheet saying his in-volvement could not be found during the investigation.
Other accused of the case are COSCO Shipping Agencys Manager AKM Azad, Mondol Groups Commercial Executive Atikur Rahman, Real Estate Company o cials Mostafa Ka-mal, Prime Hatchery Limiteds Manager Golam Mostafa So-hel, Security Company O cial Mehedi, C&F Company O cial Saiful Islam, UK-expatriate Fa-zlur Rahman and Bokul Mia.
Of them, six accused of the case were arrested and two UK-expatriates were shown fugitive.
Mostafa Kamal, Golam Mostafa Sohel and his cousin Mehedi Alam gave their con-fessional statements before the court.
An accused of the case also admitted the involvement of Nur Mohammed in cocaine consignment during his con-fessional statement.
Acting on a tip-o , Direc-torate of Customs Intelligence and Investigation (CIID) sealed a container carrying 2,140 kilo-grams of liquid cocaine in 107 drums in Chittagong Port on June 6, last year.
The Chittagong Port sources said the container was loaded from Uruguay on March, 30 and it arrived at Chittagong Port on May 13, via Singapore Port. l
News8DTTUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016
Our heartiest felicitationsto the government and
the brotherly peopleof the state of Kuwaiton the occasion of the55th National Day andthe 25th Liberation day
House # 4/A, Road # 94, Gulshan-2, Dhaka, Bangladesh
Bengali Chhatra Parishad block road protesting Azizul murdern Our Correspondent, Khagrachhari
Parbatya Bengali Chhatra Parishad (PBCP), a hill tract-based Bengali student organisation, observed a daylong road blockade in the dis-trict yesterday protesting the killing of Azizul Haque Shanta, a motorcy-
cle driver in Matiranga upazila.The announcement came from
a rally organised in Chengi Square area of the district town protesting the incident on Sunday.
Superintendent of Police Md Mazid Ali said all sorts of vehicles including passenger buses re-mained halt at Khagrachhari bus
station during the road blockade.PBCP leaders also brought out a
protest procession in the hill town in the afternoon damaging some battery run auto-rickshaws.
Two passengers Arnab Chakma and Gayetri Chakma were injured during the incident. Later, they were admitted to Khagrachhari
Adhunik Sadar Hospital. Abdul Ma-jid, central leader of the PBCP, de-manded the arrest and punishment of those involved in the killing.
Earlier, police recovered the body of Azizul Haque Shanta, son of Saleh Ahmed of Natunpara, from Richang Jharna area in Matiranga upazila on Sunday morning.
Shanto who used to run bike on hire went missing on February 18.
Agitated people blocked the Kha-grachhari-Chittagong Highway follow-ing the incident. Police also arrested a suspect, Dhon Bikash Tripura, in con-nection with murder, said Mohammad Shahadat Hossain, o cer-in-charge of Matiranga police station. l
Saudi expatriate killed in Noakhali n Our Correspondent, Noakhali
A Saudi expatriate was alleg-edly killed by his family mem-bers at Talua-Chandpur vil-lage under Begumganj upazila of the district yesterday.
The deceased was Abdus Zaher, 58.
Kabir Hossain, younger brother of the victim, said Za-her came to Bangladesh two months ago. He used to quar-rel with his wife regarding the money he sent from Saudi Arabia.
Quoting locals, Kabir said on Thursday night, Zaher had a serious quarrel with his wife.
Soon after the incident he went missing.
Kabir then led a general diary with Begumganj police station.
Golam Kabir, o cer-in-charge of the police station, said the police arrested Za-her's wife Rehana Begum, 42, and son Abdul Hannan.
After interrogation, they admitted that they had killed Zaher.
Based on their confessional statement, police recovered the body of Zaher from a pit under a canal just beside their house, the OC added.
The body was sent to Noakhali General Hospital. l
UP chairman sent to jailn Our Correspondent, Naraymnganj
Chairman of a union parishad (UP) in the district was sent to jail yesterday after he surren-dered before the court in a case.
Police sources said Zakir Hossain, chairman of Alirtech union parishad, surrendered before the Narayanganj court in the morning.
SI Golam Hossain at the
court, said Zakir and his men attacked a meeting on January 25, arranged by the Adarsha High School committee in the area, leaving over 100 people injured.
Later, a case was led with Narayanganj police station against the chairman.
The court, led by Judge Syduzzaman Sharif sent him to jail after examining the re-cords and witnesses. l
Youth beaten to deathn Our Correspondent, Sirajganj
A youth was beaten to death allegedly by his neighbours at Kallyani village in Sadar upazila yesterday.
The deceased was Shohel Rana, 28, son of Aminul Islam.
Golam Mostofa, sub-in-spector of Sadar police sta-tion, said a cow owned by Babul Mian, a neighour of Shohel entered the kitchen garden of Amiul and damaged few vegetable plants.
Aminul and his friends went to the house of Babul and in-formed the incident to him.
At one stage, the people from the both side got locked into altercation. Later, Babul and 20 others of his relatives beat up Shohel and his friends, leaving Shohel critically injured. They also vandalized 15 houses of his relatives and looted valuables.
Loclas rescued Shohel and admitted to Bogra Moham-mad Ali Medical College and Hospital where died.
At the news of the death, people of Shohel attacked the house of Babul and his men.
On information, police went to the spot and brought the sit-uation under control. A case was led in this connection. l
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016
Tripooly: Travel simpli ed
n Features Desk
Imagine not having to go from one travel agency to another to nd a travel deal or the cheapest airfare. Wouldnt it be great to have a single platform where you can nd jaw-dropping tour packages, airfare, visa assistance, cruise deals, medical tourism, corporate travel deals, leisure and honeymoon deals or even customised deals at a ordable prices? Thats where Tripooly comes in - it aims to be your one-stop-travel shop. You can compare and discover mind-blowing travel deals from multiple travel agencies, easily pay online with your credit or debit card, mobile banking or pay in cash.
The idea of creating such a platform for Bangladeshi travellers rst came to Ra Mustafa, one of the co-founders of Bangladeshs premium fashion e-commerce site ZuumZuum.com. It has been identi ed as one of the top 10 start-ups in Bangladesh by Tech In Asia (Asias largest tech/start-up news portal). Having lived in Australia and Europe most of his life, Ra has travelled around the globe (62 cities and counting) and would like to inspire others to do the same. Upon returning to Bangladesh, two years ago, Ra realised, one still had to go through the age-old method of going from agency to agency or search multiple Facebook pages for the best deal.
Ra s family has been involved in the travel industry for the past 28 years. During his time as a director in his family business, Ra has learned the ins-and-outs of this business. And, it was time for Ra to combine his passion for travelling with his experience and create a single platform Tripooly.com!
So, how will Tripooly simplify travelling?In Bangladesh, regardless if you plan to travel internally or go overseas, one usually has to go through the agonising process of nding the right deal from multiple travel agencies. The whole process is pretty time-consuming and painful in nature. Moreover, most online travel deals
are non-customisable. Tripooly wants to simplify that process by curating the most amazing online deals for you on its platform. All you have to do is tell Tripooly your budget and the places you want to visit, and let Tripooly take care of your worries.
For example lets say you have Tk30,000 and craving to travel somewhere within Bangladesh or abroad - think of St Martins or Bhutan. With Tripooly, all you have to do is mention your budget and the duration of your stay. Tripooly will act as your personal travel concierge and nd the right deal for you! Your Tripooly Travel Consultant will search through their pool of amazing deals and recommend the right travel deal.
So, is Tripooly a competitor to the existing travel agencies?Not at all. Tripooly is basically another sales platform for existing travel agencies. Travel agencies in Bangladesh have been developing this market for the last 40+ years and Tripooly wants to be part of that exciting market. Any existing
travel agency in Bangladesh or abroad are welcome to showcase their travel deals on Tripoolys platform.
Seeing this beautiful world is in everyones bucket list. Tripooly aims to inspire us to travel. And they want to do this by simplifying travelling! There are incredible places around the world and travelling will only deepen your understanding of the world as a whole. Travelling introduces you to new cultures, amazing food, wonderful people, but most importantly it in ames your passion of living a life full of adventure. So, start your adventure with Tripooly and let them take care of your next holiday. l
Travelling introduces you to new cultures, amazing food, wonderful people, but most importantly it in ames your passion of living a life full of adventure
In Bangladesh, everybody looks for travel packages, which are often not customisable and poorly-priced.I realised the importance of creating travel packages that are in line with peoples need. For example cruise trips, which are normally assumed to be very expensive, are actually not that pricey! Theres a tiny unexplored customer base for it but the package needs to be presented in the right way.
Travelling should be available for everyone. It doesnt matter if you are a student, or a businessman, or a seasoned traveller, as long as you have the passion for travelling, you are a Tripooly customer.We dont see the existing travel agencies as our competitors; we see them more as our business partners.
Finding the right deals has never been easier
Content provided by SD Asia.
Tech10DTTUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016
Huawei launches MateBook at MWC 2016At the Mobile World Congress 2016, recently held in Barcelona, Spain, Huawei launched the HUAWEI MateBook, a 2-in-1 device designed to meet the evolving demands of todays modern corporate users. Building on Huaweis success in delivering beautiful and powerful high-end mobile consumer devices, the MateBook de nes itself as a mobile productivity tool that seamlessly integrates mobility, high e ciency, work and entertainment.
The MateBook is answering the demand for portable, stylish smart devices that allow users to stay connected in any setting. Designed as a total solution for consumers who enjoy the exibility of a convertible device, the MateBook is a premium product that perfectly balances mobility, productivity and design.
With this landmark device, Huawei is demonstrating our industry-leading design and manufacturing expertise by bringing a beautifully crafted agship product to the market that is rede ning the new style of business connected computing across all devices in almost every scenario, said Richard Yu, CEO, Huawei Consumer Business Group. Huawei has successfully channelled its comprehensive experience and excellence in building premium mobile products into the needs of the modern business environment by introducing a highly e cient device, seamlessly capable of integrating work and
entertainment functions. With the MateBook, Huawei
is continuing its strategy of partnering with the most innovative market leaders. The device features a 6th Generation Intel Core m-series processor to handle the most rigorous business demands in a stylish, thin and lightweight fan-less design.
This is an exciting time for Huawei to enter the market with its powerful new MateBook, said Kirk Skaugen, senior vice president and general manager, Client Computing Group, Intel Corporation.
Built to operate on Windows 10, the MateBook also delivers the best of the legendary productivity tools and features o ered by Microsoft Corp, including its latest browser, Microsoft Edge and the Cortana digital personal assistant.
Ultra slimCombining the mobility of a smartphone with the power and productivity of a laptop, the MateBook is designed with simplicity in mind. With minimal embellishment and a sleek appearance, the device is made of high-quality aluminum unibody that is both elegant and sophisticated. The MateBook features a strong protective body to withstand the rigors of an on-the-go lifestyle, and its slim pro le and ultra-low weight of just 640g makes it ideal to carry it around.
Casing, keyboard and touchpadThe MateBook keyboard case is
made of environmentally friendly, soft PU leather, the perfect choice to match style with functionality. The durability of the keyboard case also provides an ideal level of protection. The keyboard features a 1.5mm keystroke and chiclet keycap design, which allow for larger key surfaces to minimise typing errors. The built-in touchpad uses multi-touch technology that supports smooth and precise nger movements, combining comfort and utility.
The screenThe MateBooks 12-inch IPS multi-touch screen is further enhanced by an ultra-narrow frame and a screen-to-body ratio of 84%. The screen boasts a resolution of 2160x1440 and a 160-degree wide angle for an immersive experience. The color gamut reaches an impressive 85 percent, capable of displaying true-to-life colors.
Long-lasting batteryThe MateBooks 33.7Wh high-density lithium battery provides
enough power for nine hours of work, nine consecutive hours of Internet use and 29 hours of music playback. The device also features Huaweis exclusive power-saving technology to meet the needs of business users. The MateBooks battery can attain a full charge in just two and a half hours. When there is not enough time for a full charge, the device can power up to 60% battery strength in just one hour.
The processorThe MateBook runs on Windows 10 and is powered by a 6th Generation Intel Core m-series processor, putting high-speed processing power and the most essential business productivity tools, including Microsoft O ce, at users ngertips. The device o ers up to 8GB of LPDDR3 memory and a solid-state hard drive with capacity up to 512GB.
The MatePenWhen only a hand-written note will do, the accompanying
MatePen stylus offers 2,048 levels of sensitivity, perfectly capturing users subtle and diverse pen-tip actions with zero delay. For advanced business functions, MatePen supports graphics and mathematical functions, and can be used as a laser pointer for delivering presentations.
Fingerprint recognitionThe MateBook provides security while maintaining quick access through the ngerprint recognition feature that supports 360-degree sensitive identi cation for fewer authentication failures. It takes only one touch to unlock the MateBooks screen the fastest ngerprint recognition in the industry.
The MateBook will be available in Asia, Europe and North America in the coming months and will be available in grey and golden. Starting from approximately Tk55,000 up to Tk118,000, consumers will be able to buy Huawei Matebook. l
The murder of Jagneshwar Roy, the Hindu priest of the Santo Gaurio temple who was stabbed to death in Panchagarh on Sunday, was a despicable act designed to spread fear and divide communities.Police have detained two JMB men and a Shibir activist for their
suspected involvement in the murder.Every e ort must be made to ensure this leads to all the murderers
being found and brought to justice.Sadly, this is not an isolated incident. In the past year, religiously
motivated militants bombed a Shia religious procession and carried out more vicious targeted murders of secular writers.
The threat posed from such terrorism must be taken seriously. Recent disclosures by law enforcement o cials indicate that militants have been actively planning attacks on public gatherings.
Bangladesh needs to stand rm against all groups and individuals, from whatever quarter or organisation, who seek to divide communities and spread violence.
It needs to be a top priority for authorities to make more progress in identifying and catching all the perpetrators involved in carrying out and organising the earlier killing cases. The longer such individuals remain at large, the more likely it is that they or others will be emboldened to strike again.
There is no excuse or justi cation for murder. The government cannot allow impunity. It must act unequivocally to show zero tolerance for those who commit murder and seek to spread hatred and violence.
The government needs to provide more reassurance that every e ort will and is being made to protect the public. It must ensure su cient support for law enforcement authorities to help them both track down the perpetrators responsible and to improve intelligence to guard against groups that plan to harm the fabric of our society.
Zero tolerance for those who commit murder and seek to spread hatred and violence
How to keepRMG aliveThe Bangladesh government must work on the RMG brand image to enter the US market with duty bene ts like Vietnam. We must move away from solely being suppliers to branded retailers, and focus on establishing our fashion industry as a brand in itself
Communication breakdown A nation as entrenched in the global nancial system as China can only stand to lose by discouraging independent and transparent communications between its central bank, currency institutions, equity market entities, and the rest of the world
When it comes to not allowing an individual to say what he wishes to, what he thinks, then we are in fact murdering that person as he wishes to be. We are forcefully choking the ideas out of a man who thinks di erent from us
Dont let religious extremists divide society
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016
Be heardWrite to Dhaka Tribune
FR Tower, 8/C Panthapath, Shukrabad, Dhaka-1207
Send us your Op-Ed articles:[email protected]
www.dhakatribune.comJoin our Facebook community:
The views expressed in Opinion articles are those of the authors
alone. They do not purport to be the o cial view of Dhaka
Tribune or its publisher.
n SN Rasul
When a book stall gets shut down by the police for having literature that may hurt religious sentiments, I think we all should be worried.
The age-old issue of free speech rears its ugly head again, and those of us on this side of the argument can do little to not sound too much like a broken record.
Yes, I repeat, the right to free speech is crucial. Yes, we cannot live in a democracy, a secular nation, without the free exchange of ideas. Yes, it is not right to oppress the dissenting viewpoints of the few to cater to the so-called sentiments of the many.
Those on the other side of the argument arent much better o either.
But shouldnt there be a limit
to how free free speech should be? Shouldnt we try and keep the delicate nature of religious sentiments in mind when writing/talking about the issue?
If free speech is allowed to be so free, wouldnt that lead to hate speech (and we certainly quell and ban when Islamic clerics are found to be haranguing on about being o with the heads of apostates and Jews)?
Shouldnt we strike down any speech that is attempting to, intentionally or unintentionally, provoke certain members of the populace?
With regards to the incident itself, there really isnt much to say. Last time this happened, as some of us may well know, the fairs organisers, Bangla Academy, had shut down a stall because they had predicted some sort of incident.
This time, however, it was the police themselves who, without due process or the proper channels, came down on a stall, going by the name of Badwip Prakashan.
But, seriously, who cares? Whether or not it was shut
down through proper channels because it might o end someone is a red herring at best. But the outcome is still the same, someone wrote something, someone else might take issue with it, so why not pretend like that something never even existed?
That is taking the spotlight o of the real issue.
Words are powerful tools. They can move a man to tears, shake mountains, start revolutions, and end wars. Or so the romantic in me says.
Which is exactly why we cannot continue to bow down
to extremists or the sensitively challenged every time a word is written or said that might rub them the wrong way.
Tell me: Where does the responsibility lie? Someone will always be o ended by something and there is no way we can create a false cocoon of pretence where every single utterance is a mere capitulation to a more violent breed.
Is it not up to the consumer, the public, the common man to decide whether or not they wish to avail the words published in a book?
Or are we giving so little respect to the whimsies of the common man that we do not trust them with deciding for himself?
And it is also up to the common man whether or not he is provoked to such an extent that he has to resort to violence to carry out the will of an omnipotent god.
Does the responsibility not lie on him? Or her? Or them? Those that continue to blame the wielders of freedom? Even if it is in their very faces?
If such a situation does exist (and sadly, it very much does), why do we continue to persist in the endeavour of trying to oppress the publishers?
In a con ict in which one is peaceful and the other violent, why are we bowing down to the latter? Isnt peace the better option? Shouldnt we turn the violent not quite so?
If the common man is so
susceptible to provocation and lack of judgment, shouldnt we be changing the common man?
And considering publishing like this, even ones which are so ostensibly o ensive such as Charlie Hebdo, as being hate speech, is a mistake of the highest order.
Tell me, does Charlie Hebdo ask you to hate your fellow human beings? Did The Satanic Verses tell you to wage a war on a particular people? Did Avijit Roy attempt to bring about an apostate coup?
On the other hand, certain books within the religious cannon do attempt to do all of these things, mostly against apostates, people of other faiths, women, children, and sometimes, nations.
Should we now ban these Abrahamic texts because they incite hatred? Because they say kill, even though they preach so-called peace?
To be part of a society, a group, a people, we must follow laws and rules, maintain certain etiquettes, so that we can function united, as a whole.
And that is why, no freedom, no matter how instrumental it may seem to individual existence, can be practiced fully. We must follow tra c rules, we must not harm others, we must pay for services exchanged.
But when it comes to not allowing an individual to say what he wishes to, what he thinks, then we are in fact murdering that person as he wishes to be.
We are forcefully choking the ideas out of a man who thinks di erent from us. And a person who is di erent is never wrong, but crucial to the continued existence of a society, because they show us what we ourselves were never able to see.
For each of us, God is in the details. You may nd your God up in the sky and in the intricacies of the universe and be proud of it. But someone else -- be it a heretic, a Hindu, a Buddhist -- nd it in other details, and see each detail di erently, and they too can be proud of it.
Neither has to cancel out the other.
In the history of the universe, censorship has never led to anywhere but oppression and subsequent resistance.
If we do wish to practice it though, the only kind of censorship that is acceptable is self-censorship. l
SN Rasul is a journalist and academic. Follow him @snrasul.
Opinion12DTTUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016
Shouldnt we be changing the common man instead? BIGSTOCK
When it comes to not allowing an individual to say what he wishes to, what he thinks, then we are in fact murdering that person as he wishes to be. We are forcefully choking the ideas out of a man who thinks di erent from us. And a person who is di erent is never wrong, but crucial to the continued existence of a society, because they show us what we ourselves were never able to see
Words are powerful tools -- can we not wield them to teach tolerance?
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016
n Md Harunur Rashid
One of Bangladeshs biggest competitors, Vietnam, has already entered into a Trans-Paci c Partnership (TPP) agreement (at Auckland on February 2016) with some other countries including the US.
According to economists, thats why our country most likely stands to su er from the e ects of the US-led TPP trade deal, especially in terms of export earnings, such as from RMG.
The matter of concern at hand is that Vietnam is the only garment-producing country that has been included in the TPP. With the implementation of TPP, Vietnam will become a more attractive source for imported apparels, if and when it gets duty-free access to the US.
The RMG sectors capacity to take a bigger share of the US market is hindered by the high tari rates levied on Bangladeshi apparels.
Surprisingly, Vietnams apparel export to the US increased by a massive 244% during the period between 2005 and 2014, unmatched by any other
substantial exporter, whereas apparel export from Bangladesh to the US increased by 108% during this period.
Moreover, Vietnam is leagues ahead of Bangladesh in terms of investment, compliance, and environment a airs.
Bangladesh may meet challenges in the short run, but in the long run the deal will a ect it adversely, according to the former vice-president of BKMEA, Mohammad Hatem.
Meanwhile, many economists are thinking that, not only RMG but non-RMG exports from Bangladesh will also be a ected by the TPP deal.
Another misfortune for the RMG sector was the US govern-ments extention of the general system of preferences (GSP) for 122 countries -- the only caveat being (you guessed it) Bangladesh being left out of the list.
The US government have said that there was no improvement in working conditions, workers rights, and social compliance in the RMG sector, even though social compliance had already been established after the Rana Plaza building collapse at Savar, Dhaka in 2013.
Mohammad Hatem suggested that the external factors are also at play, such as getting lower prices from buyers of major RMG-importing countries even after meeting social compliance standards.
During the period between January-July 2015, the price of RMG products imported by the US fell by 2.45% and the price of RMG products imported by the EU fell by 1.41%, in spite of the fact that every factory had to spend Tk5 crore to Tk20cr to upgrade infrastructural, re safety, and electrical safety facilities to meet international standards.
Such a large investment would be rather risky if these internal and
external issues are not sorted out as soon as possible.
Doing business and earning foreign revenue through export is becoming harder for Bangladeshi RMG entrepreneurs, not only due to disruptive internal factors that are more than enough to render the trade uncompetitive.
For example, the recent price hike of gas by 15% for industrial units and 100% for captive power producers.
Apparel manufacturers and exporters have also urged the government to maintain a smooth gas supply to their production plants in order for them to have a greater global market share.
Finally, the Bangladesh
government must work on the nations RMG brand image to enter the US market with duty bene ts, just like Vietnam.
We must move away from solely being suppliers to branded retailers, and focus on establishing our fashion industry as a brand in itself.
In addition, Bangladesh should consider following the Chinese strategy of enhancing productiv-ity and manufacturing high val-ue-added products to increase its market share in the US and other markets. l
Md Harunur Rashid is Assistant Deputy Secretary, Green Industry Development Cell, BKMEA.
Our RMG sector needs new deals to survive and thrive RAJIB DHAR
Is the Trans-Paci c Partnership deal a threat to Bangladeshi industries?
How to keep RMG alive
The Bangladesh government must work on the RMG brand image to enter the US market with duty bene ts like Vietnam. We must move away from solely being suppliers to branded retailers, and focus on establishing our fashion industry as a brand in itself
n Refayat Mosaowir Haque
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and the Peoples Bank of China (PBoC) -- the countrys central bank -- recently admitted the existence of a serious gap in their communications strategy. Sadly, the fundamental opacity of the CCP makes this an insurmountable challenge. Exacerbating this issue further is the fact the PBoC is de facto an advisory board accountable to Premier Li Keqiangs State Council. This results in the PBoC, akin to the Federal Reserve or the ECB (European Central Bank), remaining near to powerless and submissive to the whims of the State Council.
Adding to the woes is the fact that what the world needs from China, now more than ever, China does not possess. China needs a central bank governor similar in poise and authority to Ben Bernanke (now Janet Yellen) or Mario Draghi. It is safe to assume we are more or less being kept in the dark with regards to key Chinese economic and nancial data, and policies mandated by Beijing.
Lets take the example of the currency adjustment last August. Beijing decided to depeg the renminbi to the US dollar to make it more exible. The move was promising, as it aimed to o er greater exchange rate exibility with 2% devaluation relative to the US dollar, and to make the currency more market-driven in order to satisfy one of the International Monetary Funds (IMF) requirements for o cial reserve currency status.
For this reason, world markets were left utterly perplexed in August. What Beijing sought as a positive policy step was misinterpreted as the governments rst shot in a new currency war. Such instances compel us to sit and pull our hair out trying to make sense of it all.
Beijings motive was not clearly communicated, and this culminated in negative speculation and, eventually, widespread apprehension. Markets saw the devaluation as Beijings desperate response to rescue a sinking economy. It was widely perceived that the move to a more exible currency re ected the abysmal state of the economy, something o cial gures concealed. Poor communications surrounding the move not only sent world markets into a state of
hysteria but also cost the country $320 billion of its foreign exchange reserves from August till now as Beijing frantically attempted to limit a free fall of the currency.
Lapses in the CCPs communications strategy have also impacted global perceptions of the credibility surrounding o cial gures, especially concerning growth.
Many Western economists do not give much credence to o cial GDP growth rates, some expressing their distrust by going as far as referring to them as purely gments of o cial imagination.
In fact, recent gures on electricity consumption, bank lending, and freight volumes allude to increasingly weaker growth than what the o cial quarter-to-quarter composite data suggests. Power output as a metric is also a reliable indicator of growth. E ects of supplying exaggerated and misrepresented data for the bene t of the CCP is continuously being felt globally in the form of a looming global crisis, with some predicting it to
induce more dreadful and punitive repercussions than the sub-prime mortgage crisis of 2008.
Misguided and harmful policy choices can be attributed to last summers collapse of the local equity market, during which we witnessed a fall of 40% peak. In 2014, the CCP devised a scantly thought-out strategy talking-up equity prices to allow state-owned enterprises (SOEs) to oat shares for raising funds needed in paying o their excessive debts. No amount of intervention could avert the collapse that resulted from the ensuing bubble.
Complicating matters for the CCP even more is the onslaught of issues they are having to face as consequences of their misguided and poorly-communicated policies, and manipulated economic and nancial statistics. This is further widening the communications gap as more salient long-term matters such as addressing distortions in the real economy are being side-lined.
What is absolutely essential for the CCP to do at this present moment is to sustain a transparent
communications strategy that e ectively elucidates the governments short-term and long-term plans for the currency and equity markets.
Thankfully, Zhou Xiaochuan, PBoC governor, emerged out of oblivion on February 16, vindicating his institutions communications strategy by saying: The central bank is neither God nor a magician who can turn uncertainties into certainties. Mr Zhous statement was needlessly demoralising and his analogy fatuous at best.
A nation as entrenched in the global nancial system as China can only stand to lose by discouraging independent and transparent communications between its central bank, currency institutions, equity market entities, and the rest of the world.
The CCP must restrain itself from being complacent and negligent about fabricating information. Whatever the policy intentions are, the CCP must be assiduous about disclosing them lucidly and in a thoroughly detailed manner, as this is
necessary to reduce the scope for misinterpretation. Manipulating domestic economic data wont help its case either.
As is being seen in multiple cases, the CCPs unorthodox and arcane policies are ine ectively communicated to the outside world. This leaves speculators and analysts completely bewildered and incapable of making educated predictions, and steers world markets towards chaos. But maybe thats their strategy, to deliberately restrict the ow of information to the outside world.
The bottom line is if China is to maintain its growth trajectory of 7%, it ought to respect the norms and conventions of global nancial communities and play by their rules.
They could start by not being reticent about their indispensable economic information. Re-working the communications strategy could be the rst step in ameliorating the bedridden nancial status quo plaguing the second largest economy in the world.
However, it wont be all uphill once this issue is addressed, debilitating e ects of the global slowdown and other macro-pressures exerting themselves on the nation will be di cult to subdue. Chinas hardships will only increase, as the country carries on its transition from the secondary to the tertiary sector in the wake of a global recession a ecting everything from commodity prices to currencies. l
Refayat Mosaowir Haque writes from Washington DC and works for Deshee FM (Operator of Radio Masti and Radio Amar on Mediacorps XFM 96.3).
Opinion14DTTUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016
The second largest economy in the world cannot a ord to remain incommunicado REUTERS
A nation as entrenched in the global nancial system as China can only stand to lose by discouraging independent and transparent communications between its central bank, currency institutions, equity market entities, and the rest of the world. The CCP must restrain itself from being complacent and negligent about fabricating information
Chinas opaque economic policies are doing the nation more harm than good
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2016
IEA: Oil price to start slow recovery in 2017World oil prices are unlikely to rise from current levels before 2017, and even then their recovery will be slow as massive oil stocks feed into the market, the IEA said Mon-day. PAGE 16
Tofail: Corporate tax cut on RMG decided in principle Commerce Minister Tofail Ahmed said the government has decided in principle to lower corporate tax on the readymade garment sector which is now 35%. PAGE 18
Capital market snapshot: MondayDSE Broad Index 4,577.6 -0.2%
Index 1,128.6 0.3%
30 Index 1,773.7 0.4%
Turnover in Mn Tk 4,686.9 6.3%
Turnover in Mn Vol 111.3 3.9%
CSEAll Share Index 14,149.0 -0.1%
30 Index 12,672.5 -0.5%
Selected Index 8,599.1 -0.1%
Turnover in Mn Tk 297.8 -1.0%
Turnover in Mn Vol 9.1 3.9%
NUMBER OF IPOS BELOW ISSUE PRICE
Listing year No. of IPOs 2015 22014 42013 42012 62011 32010 22009 02008 12007 4
14% IPOs traded below issue pricesn Kayes SohelAround 14% of the initial pub-lic o ers (IPOs) in the countrys prime bourse listed since 1984 are currently being traded below their issue prices.
Of the 341 companies that have raised money via the primary market, shares of 45 companies are being traded below their issue prices presently.
Weakest IPOs hit in 2012 when six rms were listed as they gave negative return.
Regent Textile, listed in 2015, is the latest example of dismal perfor-mance. Its share price is currently traded at nearly Tk20 a share, down from its o er value of Tk25 a share.
The worst performing IPOs since
1984 are United Airways (BD), Zeal Bangla, Meghna Pet, Meghna Con-descend Milk, Dulamia Cotton, ICB Islamic Bank and Shyampur Sugar.
Former Bangladesh Securities
and Exchange Commission Chair-man Faruq Ahmad Siddiqi said, Unjusti ed IPO price or misre-porting on nancial statements might be the reasons behind going down from issue price.
He said share prices might erode after adjustment with the bonus share issued by the rms. Regula-tor needs to be very careful on the quality of companies those come to tap the market, he said.
Another analyst said overall the market valuation is lower now than what was in 2010 when the market was in its pick.
Of the 45 companies, there is no speci c sector downfall in IPO price, but most IPOs traded below issue prices took place after 2010.
Out of those companies having
their current stock price below the issue price, two was listed in 2015, four in 2014, four in 2013, six in 2012, three in 2011, two in 2010, one in 2008 and four in 2007.
Most of the companies listed in 2011 and 2012 witnessed fall in their earnings per shares immedi-ately after their listings.
Some of the companies includ-ed Deshbandhu Polymer, Rangpur Dairy & Food Products, Zahintex Industries, Saiham Cotton Mills, Generation Next Fashions, GBB Power and Unique Hotel & Resorts.
These track records, according to some analysts, re ects weak due diligence not only on the part of regulator but also investment bankers, said an analyst on ano-nymity. l
Farmers Bank apologises to BB for loan irregularities n Jebun Nesa Alo Farmers Bank has nally con-fessed that it had committed loan irregularities and pleaded with Bangladesh Bank to spare it from paying the penalty of Tk10 lakh.
The bank has recently sent a letter of appology to the central bank, stating that it has in line with the BBs instruction correct-ed the loan amount of Tk38.26 crore disbursed to six institutions.
Earlier, the bank marked the amount as investment, violating rules. As the bank complied with the instruction of Bangladesh Bank, the bank should be freed from the penalty, reads the letter.
The BB has decided to place the Farmers Banks appeal before its board meeting scheduled today.
The banks application will be placed before the board for con-sideration as the governor has no authority to forgive, said a senior executive of BB.
Earlier on January 11, the bank led a writ with the High Court against the penalty imposed by the central bank which drew a huge criticism from every corner.
Farmers Bank is the rst bank that went to the court against the central banks action. BB also moved to the court to defend its action and got verdict in its favour.
An investigation carried out by
the central bank found that the bank marked its loans of Tk38.26 crore as investment.
The loans were given to six in-stitutions including EBL Securities, International Securities, Prime Is-lami Securities, Kazi Equities, BD Securities and Union Capital.
But loans and investment were totally di erent according to the
bank company law which states that no loans can be shown as in-vestment.
The bank concealed the loans as it failed to bring down the cred-it-deposit rate to an acceptable level within a certain period set by the BB.
On January 20 of 2015, the central bank asked the bank to stop aggressive lending by bring-ing down its credit-deposit rate to 85% by March of the year and gradually between 70% and 75%.
The bank failed to achieve the credit-deposit target and trans-ferred the loans of Tk38.26 crore to investment segment on June 29 last year, violating rules. l
The banks application will be placed before the BB board scheduled today
Kuwait Assistance In Bangladesh
It is the cardinal policy of Kuwait to stand by its friends throughout the world.The late Amir of the State of Kuwait
Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, highlighted Kuwaits global out-reach strategy in 1961 when he remarked during the establishment of Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development, Here we are embarking on the tides of change but we will never forget our friends.
This support comes in the forms of loans and grants that go into the recipient countrys development of infrastructure, strengthening of socio-economic status and di erent sectoral advancement.
With the establishment of diplomatic relations between Kuwait and Bangla-desh in 1973, Kuwait evinced keen inter-est in providing soft loans to the newly independent country.
All forms of Kuwaiti o cial assistance to Bangladesh is channeled through Ku-wait Fund.
Kuwait attaches special importance to all requests from the Bangladesh Gov-ernment with regard to nancing partly or wholly, any development project.
The main thrust of Kuwait Funds op-eration in Bangladesh is in three core sec-tors. Financial loans have been provided for projects that have been identi ed as priority projects by the Government of Bangladesh. The sectors where Kuwaiti assistance has been extended are power and energy, communications and agri-culture.
So far, Kuwait has provided loans for twenty four (24) development projects amounting to US $ 519.60 million over a three decade period. One project was ter-minated while one another will be imple-mented in 2017. These loans have been provided as soft loans with highly exi-ble terms and conditions and carry about 3 percent or less rate of interest to cover
administrative and related expenses.Most of these loans go in infrastruc-
tural development projects that when completed will impact the socio-eco-nomic life of the people in particular and the country in general. The projects when completed will promote inter-dis-trict connectivity within Bangladesh and on a broader perspective, it will lead to regional connectivity as a result of which
Bangladesh stands to reap substantial economic gain. The underlying goal of the projects is to achieve regional peace, harmony and prosperity through greater economic cooperation through connec-tivity.
The Fund also extended three tech-nical assistance totaling about KD 423,000.00 that is equivalent to US $ 1.44 million for nancing feasibility studies of
projects in the transport sector.In addition to these loans, the Gov-
ernment of Kuwait also provided a grant equivalent to US $ 10 million to Palli Kar-ma Sahayak Foundation (PKSF) from its Goodwill Fund to promote food security in Bangladesh.
Kuwait is committed to bring about a qualitative change in the socio-economic life of the people of Bangladesh through implementation of vital projects in dif-ferent sectors.
Complementing the Kuwait Govern-ments assistance program in Bangla-desh, a number of Kuwaiti Non-Govern-ment Organizations have been working hand in hand with di erent socio-eco-nomic Organizations in Bangladesh to ameliorate the su ering of the poverty stricken people.
In an e ort to eradicate poverty in tar-geted areas, these organizations have ini-tiated social welfare projects that go way beyond the original policy of building mosques, nancing madrasas and spon-soring orphans. These Organizations have invested around US $ 380 million on di erent projects. Some of the major ar-eas where the fundings were channeled are given below:
1. Hospital and Clinics2. Students Dormitory3. Clustered Villages4. Income generating Schemes like
supply of cattle, goats, setting small shops, providing sewing machines, providing rickshaws, vans and carts.
5. Supplying seeds, and water pumps to farmers
6. Sinking tube wells for providing safe drinking water
7. Madrasas and libraries8. Vocational Training Centres9. Mosques10. Orphanages and orphan sponsorship
The concerted e orts by the Govern-ment and NGOs of Kuwait have served signi cantly as building bridges of friendship and cooperation between Ku-wait and Bangladesh.
Kuwait takes great pride in its role as a partner and facilitator in the develop-ment stride of Bangladesh. l
His Highness Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah
His Highness Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmed Al-Jaber Al-Sabah
His Highness Sheikh Jaber Al-Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah
55th National Day of
Diwaniyas in kuwaitSocial interaction is an important aspect of Kuwaiti society and it is intertwined with Kuwait culture, hospitality and tradition.
These interactions commonly take place in social gatherings commemorating special events and occasions that may be religious functions, wedding receptions or family get-togethers.
Other than such gatherings, Kuwaiti men in particular, quite often get together in the evenings in a diwaniya usually at week ends or on weekdays after work.
The diwaniya may be private, public or family. The private is just for close friends who usually gather daily. The public diwaniyas are generally held on a xed day and is open for all. The family diwaniyas are restricted to family clans where members of the clan can come and meet the prominent and elderly family members.
Indeed, the family Dewaniya was the original form of the diwaniya that has ex-isted since time immemorial.
The term originally referred to the sec-tion of a Beduin tent where the men folk and their visitors sat apart from the family.
In the olden time, it was the reception area where a man entertained his business col-leagues and other male guests. Today, the term refers both to a reception hall and the gathering held in it, and visiting or hosting a deewania is an indispensable feature of a Kuwaitis social life. As a social event, a Deewania takes place in. Special room or annex which is usually separate from the main house of the host. The deewania is frequented by men who sit around on soft benches or cushion, conversing casually smoking or pu ng hubble bubble (sheesha), nibbling snacks and drinking shots of Arabic co ee, popularly known as Gahwa.
The political or public Dewaniya is a re-cent development of the 20th century which serves as a platform for Kuwaitis as they started exercising political rights and seeking more representation in the political system.
Another form of Dewaniya is the casual Dewania which is organized by groups of friends of the same age group on one members property. This type is usually the most relaxed with participants playing cards, smoking Shisha or watching football and other games.
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 201616
Message from the Ambassador
Mr. Adel Mohammed A H Hayat
Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah wa barakatuh.
Dear Friends,As we get together to celebrate the twin occasions of the National Day and Liberation Day of the State of Kuwait, I would like to pay special tribute to our leadership and the people.
My Friends, it is because of the pragmatic leadership that Kuwait is endowed with, so fortunate to have, we have successfully made our presence appreciated in the global arena.
Today, Kuwait is poised to play an active role in the Gulf region by harnessing its resources to promote peace and stability.
In light of the Quranic teaching, the Kuwaiti society has been in the forefront when it comes to sharing its wealth and resources. This benevolent policy is e ected in three ways: through Kuwait Fund, through Kuwaiti NGOs and by private philanthropists. Kuwaits philanthropism has aptly been recognized in the International comity. I am happy to note that Kuwait is a proud partner in this countrys endeavor to attain economic growth and social justice. Since the time Kuwait established diplomatic ties with Bangladesh in 1973, Kuwait Fund has been very keen in providing necessary loans and grants in 24 core infrastructural development areas like energy, communications, and electri cation. The Kuwaiti NGOs in collaboration with local administrations in the rural areas, have played commendable roles in reducing poverty and ensuring social justice. A number of Kuwaiti philanthropists have set up educational institutes in some parts of Bangladesh to make education a ordable and accessible for underprivileged children.
Friends, I feel honored to recall once again on this momentous day the principled stand of Bangladesh during Kuwaits ordeal in 1990. This role will remain emblazoned in the annals of Kuwaits history. I am happy to see that this cooperation and coordination of our resources and skills are continuing till today.
Friends, our two countries ar