• Friday, July 25, 2014



  • Editorial

    Another case of custodial excesses

    Erosion in police ethics alarming

    IN yet another case of brutal torture in police custody, a student of City College of the capital has been undergoing treatment with one of his legs damaged beyond repair at the burn unit of the Dhaka Medical College and Hospital (DMCH).  After arresting the student nicknamed Jisan on suspicion of involvement in the murder of a fellow student,  some members of the Dhanmodi police allegedly even threatened to kill the boy,  unless his family members paid them a large sum of ransom money. It may be recalled that hardly a week and a half before, Sujon, a Mirpur jhut trader, was beaten to death in police custody. There is serious reason to be disturbed about the reported criminal trend among some members of the police department. Such outrageous behaviour of the police, as reported, should concern every sane member of society. If a lawman behaves like an outlaw, where will the citizens turn to for protection? Considering the recurrent nature of the incidents, we have little room for dismissing those as being aberrant, or inconsequential. The government can ill- afford to take lightly or with a denial mode these instances of police behaving unprofessionally and sometimes...



Harmonising ourselves with the sea

STOIC philosopher Marcus Aurelius, who was also the co-emperor of Rome, said that a man's worth is no greater than his ambition. The Stoics believed that people shouldn't over-exaggerate moments of joy in an attempt to make them seem better than they really are or try to make them last longer than they should. Bangladesh's recent victory over the maritime boundary dispute with India puts us in that critical state of mind. How happy should we be and how...

Building national resilience: An exciting imperative

WITH conflict, natural disaster and economic shocks dominating the headlines it's easy to lose sight of the fact that we live in a world of record high human development. Global per capita poverty, hunger, child and maternal mortality are all at historic lows, and continue to fall. And yet, our sense of unease with the refrain “everything is getting better” is not misplaced. Within the frame of aggregate gains is our recognition of the fragility of those gains. Approximately 47...

Missed opportunity on Gaza

EXTERNAL Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj's statement on the ongoing Gaza crisis during a discussion in the Rajya Sabha is an exercise in political correctness. By stating that New Delhi's stance on the Israel-Palestine issue has not shifted, and going ahead with a pro forma denunciation of violence, Ms. Swaraj has missed a golden opportunity to impress upon a domestic audience that the Modi administration is pursuing a fresh statesman-like approach on a complex global issue. Besides, she may have...


Shadow across free media: Why?

SOMETHING is wrong with both the means and the end. In Gandhi's eye, when the means is bad the end cannot be good. Fundamentally, it is the intent or motive that is pivotal to either adding to or unmaking a settled fact. The case in point is the government's apparent move to restore DCs' authority to cancel declaration of newspapers. This was embodied in the 1973 Press and Publications Act but subsequently revoked by Justice Shahabuddin, head of the interim...

An open letter for the people in Gaza

WE are doctors and scientists, who spend our lives developing means to care for and protect health and lives. We are also informed people; we teach the ethics of our professions, together with the knowledge and practice of it. We all have worked in and known the situation in Gaza for years. On the basis of our ethics and practice, we are denouncing what we witness in the aggression of Gaza by Israel. We ask our colleagues, old and young professionals,...


The Spin Doctors

VLADIMIR Putin just wanted Ukraine to let him in. After all, he won by a popular vote of 140%, including with that of Chuck Norris. But Ukraine had to be stubborn, to the point of shooting down a Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 thinking he would fly overhead at the same time. 298 dead. Who knows how many more will die untimely deaths due to the stumble in AIDS research. Ukraine blames Russia for arming the rebels with Buk missiles, which...



Letters To The Editor

We're unable to say, Bravo!

Now I am in a dilemma over to whom shall I write as the present government is not elected by the people and is least bothered about their feelings. They are trying to convince people that as the election was a constitutional necessity, they had no option. Awami League should not talk about constitution, since they have destroyed its spirit through the 15th amendment. In the July 18, 2014 issue of TDS, Mr Mahfuz Anam's commentary 'A job well done'...

Letters To The Editor

A great example of humanity!

Recently an episode telecast by the Sony Entertainment Television in its 'Crime Patrol' series (real life events) has touched my heart. A man named Nasir had been on regular dialysis as both of his kidneys had gone out of order. He came in contact with a human organ trader who promised Nasir to manage one kidney in exchange of 4 lac rupees. Nasir paid the trader 2.5 rupees as advance. But the trader disappeared without keeping his commitment. Nasir...

Comments on news report

“PM's UK visit to cement ties with West,” published on July 21, 2014 SM How could UK visit alone cement ties with the West? Is the UK still the master of western universe or the FM is suffering from some kind of elusion? Abul Kashem Do responsible people read the comments made by the readers? If so, how do they appear on TV shows with smiling face, and force us to swallow their 'satisfaction' over the visits? PlainSpeaker The present tie is with garment industries;...

Letters To The Editor

Published Date: July 24, 2014
US's role in Palestine crisis

The greatest hoax of the millennium is Nobel Peace Prize laureate Barak Obama's role in and his recent comments on Gaza issue. The whole world knows Anglo-US axis is the creator of the Israeli state. His offer of mediation is also a great mockery. In the previous millennium, US mediation has made the Palestinians captive in their homes as they lost their leaders; and US roadmap led them to a bleak future. Let us condemn all those barbarians and their...




Please read our special 3-part series beginning tomorrow, titled “Muslim Brotherhood, Jamaat-e-Islami and global Jihad,” by Taj Hashmi, a well known Islamic scholar, in the Op-ed page.


Published Date: July 24, 2014
Drug court's verdict welcome

IN a welcome judgment a Dhaka drug court on Tuesday awarded the highest punishment under the law to a pharmaceutical company owner and her two staff members for manufacturing an adulterated drug for children. Being the first case of such conviction, the court has thus set the stage for holding to account other spurious drug makers, the deadly impact of whose products is yet to be unraveled.   The convicted drug manufacturer, as the case statement goes, was responsible for...

Published Date: July 24, 2014
Continued EU market access

GOING by what the outgoing head of the EU delegation William Hanna has stated, the duty free access Bangladesh gets to the EU market has proved to be a tremendous opportunity for exports. Indeed, EU remains the country's single largest export market, with exports going up by a significant 57 per cent over the last three and a half years. It speaks volumes for the quality of our products and the RMG sector as a whole. That said, for...

Published Date: July 24, 2014
Growth and governance: Making the transition

ONE striking feature of the results of the last Secondary School Certificate examinations may have escaped our attention. Nearly 10% of more than a million successful candidates secured the highest grades, leaving no way of identifying the top 1% or even the top 5%. Evidently, a deliberate policy of grade inflation in public examinations is undermining the merit system. This phenomenon is perhaps symptomatic of a decline in meritocracy, with a concomitant rise of mediocrity, in all aspects of...


Published Date: July 24, 2014
Relics of the past

IMAGINE renowned poet Rabindra Nath Tagore seeking admission to the Calcutta Club, a preserve of the British, and getting rejected. Faiz Ahmad Faiz, the legendary Urdu poet, receiving a similar treatment at Lahore's Punjab Club in Pakistan and Nazar-ul Islam at the Dhaka Club. In all these cases, the public outrage would have been difficult to assuage. The white rulers saw to it that the leading clubs in a country where they had ruled remained an exclusive place for them...

Published Date: July 24, 2014
Marine resources in our maritime boundary

THE sea is a mystery to most people of Bangladesh. The waves, fish and ships are the ornaments of the sea. People love being at the sea beach and enjoy bathing in the sea and hearing the sound of the mighty waves. Bangladesh has won legal battles over the Bay of Bengal but how far do we comprehend the victory? How much do the common people know about it to cheer the achievements?   On July 7, the International Arbitration...

Transboundary water sharing

Published Date: July 24, 2014
Rights and economics

SURFACE covers only 0.02% of the global water resources, comprising water in rivers, lakes, ponds, canals, etc. There are 263 transboundary lakes and rivers in the world. They carry more than 60% of river water and their basins cover 44% of the world's basins. The riparians have water-use rights. Significant increases in water demand have created conflicts in almost half of the shared basins all over the world. The co-basin water conflict between Bangladesh and India has also become...

Published Date: July 24, 2014
Anomalies in district hospitals

WITH a very low income and high population, Bangladesh has outpaced many of its peers in social development indicators of similar per capita GDP. Improvements in some health indicators are remarkable, especially in reducing child mortality rate. Bangladesh has made dramatic advances and received the United Nations MDG award for being on track for reducing infant and child mortality. However, this overall progress in the health sector has not been equally realised throughout the country, rather regional variations are high...