Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Yunus calls for dev of Ctg for better future

Nobel laureate Dr Mohammad Yunus has said Chittagong Port is an economic heart of the country and future of Bangladesh depends on it.
"If we exploit the vast potentiality of the country's premier port Chittagong properly, the eastern countries including China, India, Thailand, Myanmar, Nepal and Bhutan must come to us," Dr Yunus said this while speaking at a golden jubilee celebration marking the leading Bangla newspaper The Daily Azadi at Chittagong Club Auditorium Saturday.
Speaking at the function he said the Daily Azadi helped unite the people of all walks of life in this region irrespective caste and creed for last 50 years.
The founder of the daily Engineer Abdul Khaleque has left behind a legacy and a rich heritage of journalism through the daily.

Fewer buyers frustrate traders

With one day to Eid-ul-Azha, cattle traders are facing hard times this year because of low turnout of buyers coupled with huge supply of sacrificial animals in the market prompting them to sell cows at a lower prices compared to the last year.
Cow hat“People are still under anthrax panic and reluctant to buy cows for sacrificing during the Eid-ul Azha”, Lablu Mia, a cattle trader in Gabtali market told this correspondent yesterday.
“Though the 14 cattle markets in the capital experienced dull trade in the last two days, those had become vibrant from yesterday”, he added.
Camels are also being traded in Gabtali cattle market. Lokman, a trader who brought ten camels this time said that he had already sold four sacrificial animals at Tk 3 lakh each.
But the prices of goats are almost 40 per cent up compared to the previous year.
“I bought two goats from Harirampur thana under Manikganj district at Tk 12 thousand each which was Tk 7 to 8 thousand each last year,” goat trader Foez Mia waiting with half a dozen of goats on the Mirpur road informed.
Earlier, people who used to sacrifice cows they have shifted to goats this year, he added.
A number of customers on the spot however echoed Foez’s claim and some of them even admitted that they got clear instructions from their families not to go for cows this year.
Apart from the 14 cattle markets many traders were seen selling their cattle on sidewalks mainly to avoid hassles from the toll collectors.
Many cattle traders said that though ‘we had to spend extra money to rear cows due to price hike of fodder, the prices of cattleheads were not satisfactory’.
Besides the authorised markets, cattle markets are organised unofficially in many places in the capital including Bonasri, Hajaribagh, Rahmatganj, Ajampur, Meradia, Armanitola, Khilkhet and Uttar Sajahanpur.
Meanwhile, Home Minister Sahara Khatun yesterday said stern action would be taken if any of the police personnel were found to be involved in extortion in the cattle markets.
No incident of extortion has been reported so far in the cattle markets of the city and the cattle traders are running their business peacefully, the minister told the reporters after visiting two cattle markets - one at Taltola and the other near the orthopaedic hospital.
Replying to a query, Sahara Khatun said the city dwellers should feel secure during the Eid as the law enforcement agencies were carrying out drives against the muggers and other criminals.
Law-enforcement agencies would be kept alert to ensure people’s safety, the minister said and urged the people to inform the police if any untoward incident took place during the Eid vacation.
-The Independent

China begins damming Brahmaputra

China has started damming the middle reaches of the Brahmaputra River, or the Yarlung Tsangpo as it is known in Tibet, to begin construction on a 510MW hydropower project that has raised concerns in India.
The government for the first time revealed that it has, since November 8, begun damming the Tsangpo's flow to allow work to begin on the hydropower project at Zangmu, reports The Hindu.
This is the first major dam on the Brahmaputra and has been billed by the Chinese government as a landmark hydropower generation project for Tibet's development.
A news report on Monday said the "closure of the Yarlung Zangbo River on November 12 marked the beginning of construction." Work is expected to continue beyond 2014, when the first set of generators will be put into operation. The total investment in the project is 7.9 billion yuan ($1.2 billion).
The Indian government has raised concerns about the possible downstream impact of this project during talks with China earlier this year. Chinese officials have assured their Indian counterparts that the project would be "run of the river," having little impact downstream.
China has said that its projects were only for hydropower generation, and were neither storage projects nor designed to divert the water.
Officials at India's Ministry of External Affairs have, however, voiced frustration over China's general lack of willingness to share information regarding the Zangmu project, meaning they had little means to verify claims on the specific construction plans and impact on flows.
According to Ramaswamy R. Iyer, former Water Resources Secretary of the Government of India, for India "the point to examine would be the quantum of possible diversion and the impact it would have on the flows to India."
Usually, to ensure that the flow downstream remains unaffected during the period of construction of a dam, the water is diverted through streams around the construction site and returned to the river.
"Since the flow of the water cannot be stopped, the water will be diverted so there will be no reduction of flow in this stage," Mr Iyer, who is an authority on dams and transboundary water issues, told The Hindu on Monday, speaking from New Delhi.
He stressed that he was speaking in general terms regarding any dam construction, and did not have specific details regarding how China was carrying out this particular project.
There is still some uncertainty on what China intends for the project, and whether or not a storage reservoir, which could affect downstream flows, will be built beyond the minimal "pondage" required to operate the turbines.
Chinese media reports indicated that the Zangmu project is unlikely to be the last on the Brahmaputra. A news report on the widely read portal Tencent said the Zangmu dam was "a landmark project" for Tibet's development, being the first major dam in Tibet, and "a project of priority in the Eleventh Five Year Plan."
The report said that such projects would "greatly relieve the energy stress in the middle regions of Tibet" and upgrade power capacity from 100 MW to over 500 MW.
Mr Iyer said a larger concern for India was the absence of a water-sharing treaty with China, which does not allow India to either qualify or address Chinese claims regarding specific projects.
"Between India and Pakistan, we have a treaty which specifies what we should do," he said. "We're not supposed to retain a drop, and [even] during a stated period of construction, inflow is equal to outflow."
"But with China," he added, "we have no treaty. So what they will do, we have no idea."

Eid-ul-Azha being celebrated

Devotees by their thousand turned up at mostly makeshift prayer grounds on Wednesday morning as Eid-ul-Azha, the second-largest religious festival of the Muslims, was celebrated throughout the country with due religious fervour and solemnity.
Eid in bangladesh
The main Eid congregation was held at the National Eidgah on the High Court premises at 8.00am. The first congregation of Baitul Mukarram National Mosque was held at 7:00 am.
Chief Justice ABM Khairul Haque, cabinet members, advisers to the prime minister, state ministers, Dhaka City Corporation mayor, parliament members, Supreme Court judges, election commissioners, the attorney-general and senior political leaders joined around a hundred thousand people to offer Eid prayers at the main congregation.
Khatib of Baitul Mukarram National Mosque Prof Moulana Muhammad Salahuddin conducted the Eid prayers at the mammoth congregation.
A special munajat was also held seeking divine blessings for peace, development and welfare of the country and its people and greater unity of the Muslim Ummah.
Stringent security arrangements were made by the law-enforcing agencies to maintain law and order. Policemen in plain clothes as well as uniform were deputed at Eid congregations for the security of the devotees.
After offering Eid prayers, people sacrificed animals. The process of sacrificing the animals will continue till Friday (third day of Eid) for the holy fiesta. People are sharing the meat with their family, friends and the poor.
The eid is being celebrated on the tenth of Jilhajj with sacrifices and prayers in memory of the sacrifice of Prophets Ibrahim Khalilullah and Ismail Zabihullah (peace be upon them).
It does not simply commemorate the unique sacrifice made by them--it also testifies eloquently to the way in which both father and son cheerfully offered to suffer any self-sacrifice, however painful or difficult it might be, in order to obey the command of Allah, the Cherisher and Sustainer of the Worlds.
President Zillur Rahman, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and opposition leader and BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia earlier gave separate messages greeting the countrymen on this occasion.
Dhaka City Corporation, like previous years, is carrying out massive cleanup drive after the slaughtering of sacrificial animals for the holy fiesta.
Besides, important public buildings, thoroughfares and road islands of the capital have been decorated with national flags and banners inscribed with `Eid Mubarak.` Major government buildings have also been illuminated.
-Bangla news

15 killed in road mishaps in different dists on Eid day

At least 8 people were killed and 22 injured in separate road accidents in Comilla and Magura early Wednesday, as homebound holidaymakers were still struggling then to reach their destinations to celebrate Eid-ul-Azha.In Comilla, five people were killed and 22 others wounded in a head-on collision between two buses at 7.30 in the morning in front of Bijoypur market adjacent to Comilla-Noakhali Road in Sadar upazila (south) of the district.
road accident
Four of the deceased four were identified as Malek Bhuyan, 45, of Begumganj, Rojina Begum, 26, of Selimpur in Noakhali, Sadek, 5, and Taslima, 25.
ASI Moktar Hossain of Lalmai Upazila Highway Police Box told banglanews that a Noakhali-bound passenger bus of Palsh Paribahan collided with a Dhaka-bound passenger bus of Alfalah Paribahan, coming from opposit direction, leaving five passengers of Palash Paribahan dead on the spot and 22 passengers of both the buses injured.
The injured were admitted into Comilla Medical College Hospital, three in critical condition.
Police seized the buses but drivers and helpers managed to flee the scene.
In another fatal accident in Magura, three people were killed early Wednesday as a bus knocked down an Easy bike (battery-run auto rickshaw) on the Magura-Jhenidhah road in Alamkhali-Ramnagar area.
The deceased were identified as Rabeya Khatun, 50, her husband Abu Jafar, 60, and Ubaidul, 30, the easy-bike driver.
On information about the death of her brother, Rabeya along with her husband was leaving for Parnanduali village by an easy bike, said Magura thana SI Nazrul Islam. “But they also died on the spot as a Chuadanga-bound passenger bus of Darshana Deluxe rammed the easy bike in Alamkhali- Ramnagar area," he added.
A case was filed in this connection.
In Narsingdi, the separate two road mishaps claimed four lives, including three of the same family.
Officer-in-Charge of Shibpur Model Thana, Mujibur Rahman Majumdar, told banglanews that a sand-laden truck collided head on with an auto-rickshaw at 12 noon near Purandia of Shibpur Upazila in the district leaving three persons dead on the spot.
The deceased were identified as CNG driver Abul Kashem, 35, of Shibpur Manikdi village, his brother Shafiqul Islam, 22 and nephew Bijoy, 4.
In another accident, Hussain Ali, 65, was run over by a motorcycle near Sahapratab Crossing on Dhaka-Sylhet Highways when he was returning home after offering Eid prayer.
In Savar, two men were killed in two road accidents on Wednesday.
Police said, an unidentified pedestrian, 32, was crashed under the wheel of a speedy truck at 7:30 in the morning at Amin Bazar.
One more was killed in another accident occurred near Amin Bazar on Dhaka-Savar Highways.
When contacted, Mahbubur Rahman, Officer-in-Charge off Savar Model Thana, confirmed the accident.
In Barisal, a day labourer was killed in a road accident in Askor area under Agailjhara upazila in the district.
The diseased was identified as Tulu Mia, 28, of Nagirparh Village under the upazila.
According to witnesses, Tulu was seriously injured when a motorcycle hit him at the time of crossing the road in Askor area.
He was rushed to Gauranadi Health Complex where the on duty doctor declared him dead.
Police arrested motorcyclist Rabin, 28, in this connection.
-Bangla News

Sholakia hosts the largest congregation

Sholakia, famous for its huge draw of devotees, like the previous years, has hosted the largest Eid congregation in the country.
Sholakia, eid ground
Thousands of people from far and wide started flocking to the ground, spanning over seven acres of land, overnight.
Two special trains—Sholakia Express—carrying devotees from Bhairab and Mymensingh reached Kishoreganj at 8am.
The Eidgah committee estimated that more than a hundred thousand Muslims participated in the 183rd congregation, that started at 9am.
Maolana Farid Uddin Masud, chairman of the Islahul Muslimin Parishad, led the prayers.
One of the oldest surviving congregation grounds in Bangladesh, established in 1828, the Sholakia Eidgah reportedly held 1.25 lakh people at its first congregation.
RAB and police were deployed at the Eidgah and its adjacent areas to maintain security.