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Bangladesh faces democracy deficit

Bangladesh faces democracy deficit

Over a span of three decades, Bangladesh's multi-party democracy has turned into “partyarchy”, a tendency of political parties to exert overwhelming influence on state and non-state institutions. It has resulted in a downslide in the rule of law, democratic accountability and state building -- the three tenets of political development, says a study report...

Green power gets boost

Green power gets boost

The government is introducing the first ever feed-in-tariff system, a mechanism designed to accelerate investment in power generation from renewable sources, and it is allowing companies to commercially install solar plants on large government buildings. Under the initiative, Rahimafrooz Renewable Energy Ltd (RREL) has installed a battery-free solar power plant on the roof of...

Next target Pak politicians' kids

After the gruesome killing of children in Peshawar this week, Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan has warned the Nawaz Sharif government that it will start eliminating children of politicians, including Sharif's family, and army officers if the Pakistan government keeps its commitment to hang militants owing allegiance to the terror outfit. The warning came in the form of a letter, written apparently by Mohammed Kharasani, believed to be a top commander of Tehrik-e-Taliban chief Mullah Fazlullah. It was received by Pakistan authorities on...

Study on Sundarbans

Oil spill takes toll on aquatic life

The Shela river oil spill in the Sundarbans will have a long-term effect on the aquatic life, and food for fish in the water body has already went down by 80 percent, says a Khulna University study. About 3.58 lakh litres of furnace oil from a tanker that sank on December 9 has hampered the growth of planktons -- marine and freshwater organisms that are the base of food web in an aquatic environment.  “If planktons grow less, aquatic species like...

Civil Servants’ Salaries

Big hike likely

The Pay and Service Commission is going to submit its report to the government today with recommendations of a pay hike for 13 lakh civil servants. The commission's chairman Mohammad Farashuddin, who was a former Bangladesh Bank governor, will submit the report to Finance Minister AMA Muhith at 9:00am at the latter's secretariat office. “The main objective of the report is to improve productivity, honesty and efficiency of those who are doing government services”, Farashuddin told The Daily Star over the...

Two brothers killed in Ctg

Two brothers killed in Ctg

Unidentified assailants beat and stabbed two brothers to death at Chandgaon in the port city when they were returning home after attending a namaz-e-janaza of a relative on Friday night.   The dead are Faridul Alam, 45, and Abu Siddique, 42, sons of Abdus Sabur in Chandgaon area. They were timber merchants by profession. Two timber...

Land Boundary Deal, Teesta Water Sharing

Published Date: December 20, 2014
Modi hopeful but gives no timeframe

Modi hopeful but gives no timeframe

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi yesterday expressed optimism about the implementation of Land Boundary Agreement and sharing of Teesta water. Without giving any timeframe, Modi told Bangladesh President Md Abdul Hamid that his government is working on resolving the pending issues of LBA and Teesta and is hopeful about an early resolution. During their half-an-hour...

Published Date: December 20, 2014
LPG subsidy goes down the drain

LPG subsidy goes down the drain

Government subsidy of up to Tk 75 crore a year, meant to support LP gas (cooking gas) consumers, is being eaten up by a few middlemen for years. Though these middlemen (dealers) are thriving at the expense of taxpayers' money, the government has done little in the last five and a half years to correct the price of the Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation (BPC)-produced liquefied petroleum gas in line with the market rate. State-owned BPC sells a 12.5kg LP gas cylinder for Tk 700, while private companies sell a 12kg cylinder for Tk 1,450. This price gap of over 100 percent has been encouraging unscrupulous dealers to sell the entire lot of...

Global Survey on Political Engagement

Published Date: December 20, 2014
Bangladeshis most active

Bangladeshis most active

Bangladesh has ranked the highest in terms of people's political participation among 33 developing and emerging nations, says a global survey. The country, however, has a very low political efficacy with over two-thirds of the respondents saying government officials do not care about what the people think, it says. The survey, titled "Spring 2014 Global Attitudes Survey" by the US-based Pew Research Centre, shows 65 percent Bangladeshis have higher level of involvement in political affairs and 29 percent medium level, though the Asia region ranks the lowest in this field with an overall median of 24 percent. As regions, the Middle East and Africa have relatively high rates of participation in...

Published Date: December 20, 2014
Damage less than initially thought

The oil spill would obviously cause harm to the ecology of the Sundarbans, but its intensity might be less than what was initially apprehended, said Environment and Forests Minister Anwar Hossain Manju yesterday. Meanwhile, the Unesco World Heritage Centre, Unesco Dhaka office and the Ramsar Secretariat have expressed serious concern over the impact of the spill on the world heritage area of the Sundarbans. A UNDP team that had come to extend support to the government's clean-up efforts is scheduled to...

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