• Thursday, November 27, 2014

Cover Story

Published Date: November 21, 2014
Wasfia's Everest

Wasfia's Everest

A mountaineer. An adventurer. An activist. One of the first Bangladeshis to climb Mount Everest and the first Bangladeshi to attempt to climb the seven summits, Wasfia Nazreen was recently selected by National Geographic as one of its adventurers of the year. From a small town girl to one of the most well-known...

Chintito

Published Date: November 21, 2014
The One Imam Not to be Followed

The One Imam Not to be Followed

The recent remarks by High Talking Imam, the political advisor to the prime minister has irked sayong the Prime Minister, and rightly so. Needless to say, for an inside man to say outside that there will be state-sponsored nepotism to favour 'our men', albeit at viva voce level, doesn't bode well of the...

Tribute

Published Date: November 21, 2014
The Beacon of Wisdom

The Beacon of Wisdom

Great philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson says, “The office of the scholar is to cheer, to raise, and to guide men by showing them facts amidst appearances. He plies the slow, unhonoured, and unpaid task of observation. He is the world's eye.” With the departure of Professor Dr Zillur Rahman Siddiqui, one of the greatest scholars of Bangladesh, we have lost the eye of our wisdom and conscience. His encyclopedic knowledge and scholarly contributions have taken our nation forward to establish a progressive society. He has played an important role to lead the country towards the democratic path when it was on the brink of an uncertain future. His literary contributions,...

Current Affairs

Published Date: November 21, 2014
Unpleasant Truths

Unpleasant Truths

In his first term as an advisor to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, HT Imam put the Hasina government into an embarrassing situation. Two district judges were sent into force retirement at the end of July, 2009. It happened only seven months after the then government-led by Hasina began its journey after an overwhelming victory in the December, 2008 parliamentary election. Imam played the leading role in sending the two judges on retirement, triggering some huge controversy and criticism. It was considered an attack on the independence of the judiciary. The constitutional provision was not followed to send the judges on retirement. The two judges had reportedly prepared to challenge...

Musings

Published Date: November 21, 2014
WHAT TIME IS IT?

WHAT TIME IS IT?

Does the time bother you? I get bothered by the time. Not so much the time itself but people. People bother me for the time. People come up to me and say—I am sure it happens to you a lot—“What time is it?” As if I personally was responsible for keeping the time. I feel honoured that they think I am the man in charge. But I don't have the time. I use a little of it like everyone else. But I don't have it. I think the US Navy has it in Washington. They keep it in the naval observatory. They let out a little each day. Not too much,...

Special Feature

Published Date: November 21, 2014
Bringing Hay to Town

Bringing Hay to Town

Tahmima Anam, a Bangladeshi writer, novelist and columnist won the Best First Book winner of the 2008 Commonwealth Writer's Prize for her first novel 'A Golden Age' based on the 1971 Liberation War. Her second novel 'The Good Muslim' was nominated for the 2011 Man Asian Literary Prize. In 2013 she was included in the Granta list of 20 best young writers. As one of the co-producers of the Hay Festival Dhaka Tahmima talks to the Star about how this exciting literary event was brought to Dhaka and how Bangladeshi literature lovers have received it. How did you and the other co-producers decide to bring the Hay Festival to Dhaka? As...

Literature

Published Date: November 21, 2014
Stories that Travel Continents

Stories that Travel Continents

Neeman Sobhan, columnist and writer, has always had a knack for telling a story. She started writing her column 'Ruminations from Rome' since 1991, later shifting to the Star magazine with 'A Roman Column'. While writing on Italy, a country where she has lived for decades she has also delved into writing short stories now and then. This year at the Hay Festival, Dhaka, Bengal Publications will be launching  Neeman's collection of short stories 'Piazza Bangladesh'.    The stories are about Bangladeshi expatriates in Italy – both the struggling immigrants of Rome's back streets as well as those who live in the 'refined, tinted villas in pine shaded suburbs'. They also...

Photography

Published Date: November 21, 2014
A Balancing Act

A Balancing Act

Originally a software engineer from the Silicon Valley, Ihtisham Kabir, is an avid photographer who literally goes out of his way to discover the beautiful side of Bangladesh. His weekly column 'Tangents' in The Daily Star is a proof of his obsession with nature and positive Bangladesh as well as his undeniable talent...

Reflections

Published Date: November 21, 2014
A Belated Tribute

A Belated Tribute

It is very hard to find a single person in the country who isn't familiar with the brilliant architecture of the National Memorial. The mausoleum, composed of seven triangles, has  been placed in text books, coins, posters, used as government symbols and in so many places that there is no way you can ignore it. But how many of us really know the man behind this amazing design? How many text books contain the name of the architect of the memorial that honours the country's most revered heroes? As days stretch into weeks and weeks into months, memory fades. We consciously or unconsciously forget the contributions of great men, and...

Village Flute

Published Date: November 21, 2014
Banglafornia

Banglafornia

California. The first known mention was in the 1510 romance novel “Las Sergas de Esplandián” by Spaniard Garci Rodríguez de Montalvo. In the novel, California was an imagined island populated by black Amazon women, without any men. West of the Indies, California was the closest thing on Earth to paradise. California started as...

Art

Published Date: November 21, 2014
AN ODE TO THE ETHNIC

AN ODE TO THE ETHNIC

                                  Four works from the Face series, acrylic on canvas, 2013-14. What is new about Kanak Chanmpa Chakmas's attempt at Bengal Lounge? As the centre piece of 'Life is here', her two year solo attempt, is 'Eternal Vigilance', a 90 cm by 90 cm acrylic on canvas. There is as usual the yellow and blue...

Perspective

Published Date: November 21, 2014
Remember, Remember

Remember, Remember

On the 5th of November, sparks went flying in Dhaka. While it wasn't to commemorate Guy Fawkes, in the end, the incidents did end up striking a blow at powerful, wayward institutions. By now, you've surely heard of the assault on a renowned photographer and his two nieces by hooligans who turned out...

Education

Published Date: November 21, 2014
The Second Chance

The Second Chance

Reaching 18 brings a new kind of thrill to everyone regardless of one's country and culture. It means being free to explore life and take exciting challenges. In fact, for a Bangladeshi youngster it is the time to take one of the most crucial adventures of his/her life. After completing higher secondary school certificate examination (HSC), these young people take part in the university admission test. Hundreds and thousands of students sit for the admission test to get admitted to reputed universities like Dhaka University, Jagannath University etc. But with a handful of seats and a huge number of competitors these admission tests are like climbing the highest peaks...

Published Date: November 21, 2014
Star Diary

Star Diary

DUBIOUS DEAL A few months ago, I was on my way to Farmgate by bus. When it stopped at the traffic signal at Bijoy Sarani, I noticed a police sergeant on the sidewalk, talking to a motorcyclist. The biker repeatedly requested the policeman to let him go. Turning down his appeal, the sergeant asked...

Published Date: November 21, 2014
Write to Mita

Write to Mita

Dear Mita, I am a 16-year-old girl. I will be taking my O-levels next year. I am having a relationship with one of my childhood friends. One month ago, my sister-in-law saw one of our photographs on Facebook , and she told my parents everything. They trusted me a lot and knew that I would never get involved in these things, as I've always been a serious student. My mother used to drop me off at my coaching centre previously, but now as she doesn't trust me, she stays there till the end of my class. This breaks my heart as I feel like I will never regain her trust....

Published Date: November 21, 2014
Quirky Science

Quirky Science

No words necessary? What if we didn't need words to communicate with others and our brains could communicate? Science Daily reports that University of Washington researchers have successfully replicated a direct brain-to-brain connection between pairs of people as part of a scientific study following the team's initial demonstration a year ago. In the newly...

Remembrance

Published Date: November 21, 2014
REMEMBERING THE MARTYR

REMEMBERING THE MARTYR

Titumir was one of the first to fight against the exploitation of British colonial rulers and their local henchmen, the zamindars. With his followers who were farmers and peasants, he valiantly fought and sacrificed his life. He has become an inspiration for all the uprisings against oppression, even for the liberation war of 1971. His bamboo fortress became an icon of anti-colonial movements. On the occasion of his 183rd death anniversary (November 19, 1831), we remember the life of this valiant freedom fighter. Titumir was born in the Chandpur village of North 24 Parganas  (currently in West Bengal, India) on  January 27, 1782 His real name was Syed Mir Nisar Ali After...

Postscript

Published Date: November 21, 2014
It's that Stupid Virus

It's that Stupid Virus

When I was in college, many many years ago, there was this one course that was the cause of much misery and frustration. 'Management and Operations' didn't sound all that lethal but the professor who took the class assumed all his students were whiz kids with advanced knowledge of computer programming. This made...

Published Date: November 21, 2014
MAILBOX

MAILBOX

A Golden Opportunity We all can help in the revival of jute products. While shopping we should refuse to accept plastic bags. The government should try to enforce the Mandatory Packaging Act, 2010. Small industries that are capable of producing handicrafts from jute must be encouraged and established. I hope the government will pay...

MAD GENIUS

Published Date: November 21, 2014
WALT WHITMAN

WALT WHITMAN

May 31, 1819 – March 26, 1892 Influential American poet, essayist and journalist Walter "Walt" Whitman is best known as the father of free verse.  His celebrated book 'Leaves of Grass' created controversy in the literary world. Many critics described the book as obscene for its explicit sexuality. "Simplicity is the glory of expression. Be curious, not judgmental.   Every moment of light and dark  is a miracle. I exist as I am, that is enough."

Published Date: November 21, 2014
HOME AND ABROAD

HOME AND ABROAD

Dealing in Wild Birds Birds are becoming rare species even in the country side. Wildlife Management and Nature Conservation Department, and Wildlife Crime Control Unit confiscated 33 wild birds and a mongoose from Tongi Pigeon Haat, a common place for trading wild birds in Gazipur. Water Lilies Seas of water lilies have covered some...

SNAPSHOT

Published Date: November 21, 2014
Extortion and Exploitation

Extortion and Exploitation

An elephant is being used by its mahout to extort money from people. This scene is often seen in different parts of the city, as the elephant refuses to budge from the place and allegedly accepts nothing below Tk 20.

Published Date: November 21, 2014
Voicebox

"There will be a chocolate shortage and there isn't a solution to the problem. Seven years is what we think we have left." ANGUS KENNEDY Chocolate Expert World's leading chocolate manufacturers and confectionaries warned that the world will run out of chocolate within 7 years and in 20 years chocolate will be more expensive than caviar "Well, I guess I'll shake your hand, but I only have one thing to say to you: you need to get out of Ukraine." STEPHEN HARPER Canadian Prime Minister Said...

Cartoon

Published Date: November 21, 2014
Babu

Babu

 

Cover Story

Published Date: November 14, 2014
A GOLDEN OPPORTUNITY

A GOLDEN OPPORTUNITY

It is a Friday, and thus, the usual hat-bazar (market) is not in full swing. Yet a few farmers have gathered at the Tekerhut jute market on the bank of river Kumar, Madaripur. We excitedly enter the market. Hair-raising pictures, news and a number of stories – true and false- portray jute farmers...

Chintito

Published Date: November 14, 2014
Switching Sides

Switching Sides

It has dawned on me after each time jumping in joy, which in retrospection appears silly, at the regular offers of some cell phone companies, often past midnight by SMS, that if we actually responded to each of their channel-dazzling, street-blinding, albeit mind-boggling ads, we could change our lifestyle, and well, our economic...

Current Affairs

Published Date: November 14, 2014
She is Unique

She is Unique

Any ordinary Bangladeshi will be puzzled if h/she is suddenly asked who the leader of the opposition in the parliament is. Some of them even answer the name Khaleda Zia. But the truth is Raushan Ershad, not Khaleda, is the present leader of the opposition. Raushan performs very little political activities. It is...

Venture

Published Date: November 14, 2014
Peshawari Possibilities

Peshawari Possibilities

It is a Wednesday evening, just around 6, and Asad Khan–kinetic force in the open kitchen of Kabab factory, one of Gulshan's upcoming restaurants of the moment–is displaying his usual verve. It's the opening night of the second branch–prompted by the success of their Uttara location–and he is anticipating a crowd of 300. His...

Endeavour

Published Date: November 14, 2014
THE STORY OF A DREAM

THE STORY OF A DREAM

The big banyan tree in the Arts building premises of Dhaka University (DU) is quite a popular place. The tree's cool, serene shade on a spacious podium around it makes it an ideal place for adda. Asif Bayezid, a student of Institute of Education and Research (IER), DU looks at it from a different...

Travel

Published Date: November 14, 2014
INTO THE HEART OF AFRICA

INTO THE HEART OF AFRICA

After a 15-hour nonstop flight from New York over the Atlantic, African coast, Namibia and Botswana we landed at Johannesburg (“Joburg” in native-speak) Oliver Tambo International airport last September. Surprisingly, no form filling was required by immigration. We stayed in Sandton, a Johannesburg suburb. The Nelson Mandela Square in Sandton offers exclusive shops, boutiques...

Impressions

Published Date: November 14, 2014
BETWEEN ANONYMITY AND CELEBRITY

BETWEEN ANONYMITY AND CELEBRITY

From the light-hearted to the serious, imprints on casual wear, tinting with henna, tattooing and piercings have been statements of fashion, personal fantasy, identity, or cult culture. Some of these drip with the milk and honey of humanity. Others assert identity. Still others are just plain hilarious. These are not fads that come and go. Mostly they have proved to be durable, dynamic and changing as parts of vibrant cultural trends. Some of these modes of self-expressions are of recent origin but the art forms on human canvas, if you like, have a classical pedigree originating well back in time. Most of them are creative, ornate and intricate like the...

Interview

Published Date: November 14, 2014
The Avant-Garde Artist

The Avant-Garde Artist

Art cannot be judged. You can't confine it to a set of rules and guidelines. Artist Zihan Karim, the sole artist from Bangladesh to participate in the recently concluded fifth Fukuoka Asian Art Triennial, 2014, believes that art is open for all to enjoy and critique but an artist's work should not be...

Musings

Published Date: November 14, 2014
Rediscovering Islam

Rediscovering Islam

I have spent the majority of the past four years doing my undergrad studies in Canada. I was born into a Muslim family in Bangladesh. However, I was raised with the utmost freedom of choice to make my own decisions. My parents and my whole family for that matter were never overly practicing...

Village Flute

Published Date: November 14, 2014
Tea Reconsidered

Tea Reconsidered

I'm invited to the home of Mintu Deshwara, The Daily Star correspondent for Moulvibazar. He's the proud son of tea labourers. It's not every day the chance arises to stay in a tea worker's cottage; but with the afternoon heat and the walking, when we arrive I'm tired. I wonder where on Earth I...

Art

Published Date: November 14, 2014
Peace and Light

Peace and Light

Proshanto Karmakar Buddha's latest artistic endeavour exhibit is thematically based on what the whole world seems to be striving for : Peace. The exhibition, at the lounge of Café Mango, Gulshan will last for two months and ends on January 14. In 2010, the US government chose Proshanto's work to represent Bangladesh. 'Peace through Art', as it was called, was the entrée from Bangladesh, and this was with seven other country representatives.    The present exhibition deals with light, with no gloom to share. It is full of the vibrancy of life even when the characters are struggling – like the gypsies and the adivasi women. This is an optimistic...

Exhibition

Published Date: November 14, 2014
Bridging the Cultural Divide

Bridging the Cultural Divide

New Perspectives by Syed Iqbal is the latest endeavour of this Bangladeshi artist who lives in Canada and has made a niche in the art scene there. This particular show was held at Promenade Gallery, Mississauga in Canada in October. It is a colourful tribute to the cubist and expressionist era that somehow...

Health

Published Date: November 14, 2014
A RAPID INVADER

A RAPID INVADER

Cellulitis is a serious infection that spreads under the skin, affecting soft tissues such as the skin itself and the fat underneath it. It is commonly a bacterial infection, but occasionally fungus could be a cause. Cellulits may first appear as a red, swollen area that feels hot to touch. It is extremely...

International

Published Date: November 14, 2014
THE UGLY REALITIES

THE UGLY REALITIES

All of a sudden, Myanmar is being squeezed from all sides. It couldn't have happened at a worse - or better - time, depending on how one looks at it. This past week, the country's security forces have been accused of profiting from human trafficking of Rohingya Muslims via boats off the west coast...

Published Date: November 14, 2014
Star Diary

Star Diary

THE CORRUPT SQUAD The CNG-run auto-rickshaw I had hired was stopped by a policeman at a check-post. He asked the driver for his license. I had thought that the driver had a driving license but to my surprise, I was proved wrong. The policeman asked the driver to accompany him. After a few minutes,...

Published Date: November 14, 2014
Write to Mita

Write to Mita

Dear Mita, I am a 28-year-old woman. I am going to get married to a very sweet man by the end of this year. I've known him for a couple of years and can say with absolute certainty that he will be the best husband and companion. I have not disclosed this to anyone but I was molested as a teenager and that incident haunts me till date. Recently I told my fiancé about this and as usual, he was very understanding and was only concerned about my mental health and safety. I love him very much but am extremely scared to begin this new chapter of my life. I...

Published Date: November 14, 2014
Quirky Science

Quirky Science

Can (and should) happiness be a policy goal? How does an individual's happiness level reflect societal conditions? A new article in the first issue of Policy Insights from the Behavioral and Brain Sciences (PIBBS) finds that similar to how GDP measures the effectiveness of economic policies, happiness can and should be used to evaluate...

Remembrance

Published Date: November 14, 2014
A Timeless Voice

A Timeless Voice

Kalim Sharafi (8 May 1924 – 2 Nov 2010) was one of the most renowned singers of Rabindra Sangeet in the subcontinent. Besides his luminous performance as a singer, he was also a prominent cultural activist and a thought leader. He was one of the few personalities who popularised Rabindra Sangeet in this part of Bengal. Through his songs and writings he wanted to make people conscious of their cultural identity. We remember this great cultural personality on his 4th death anniversary.  Kalim Sharafi was born in the Birbhum district of West Bengal on May 8  1924 He was from a conservative religious family that migrated to West Bengal from...

Postscript

Published Date: November 14, 2014
Dining with the Intelligentsia

Dining with the Intelligentsia

A part of being a professional is being invited to various dinners given by people far more important and well known than you, attended by individuals, sometimes equally or even more important than them, the host(s). For some invitees this is like winning a much-coveted prize. The opportunity to actually exchange name cards and network with high ups and celebrities promises all sorts of possibilities. For others, the shy, behind the scenes types, such dinners are obligatory activities to prove that they are normal people and that they appreciate the interest taken in them. In some cases it may also be to show that they are interested in keeping their...

Published Date: November 14, 2014
MAILBOX

MAILBOX

An Incorrigible Straight Shooter Mohiuddin Ahmed seems to be a lone soldier in the fight against the violation of copyright and Intellectual Property Rights. In this country, no one respects and follows copyright laws. At schools rote learning is encouraged. Students memorise something from a book and then get high marks for reproducing it...

MAD GENIUS

Published Date: November 14, 2014
NANCY SINATRA

NANCY SINATRA

June 8, 1940 A celebrated American singer and actress, Nancy Sandra Sinatra is commonly known for her 1966 iconic hit “These boots are made for walking”. In the early sixties, Sinatra began her career as a singer while also acting with Elvis Presley in the movie "Speedway" and with Peter Fonda in "The Wild Angels" in the same decade. "There are a lot of people who would laugh at the idea of me being a good singer. After 50, the rock 'n' roll road is a little absurd. It's very difficult to play these little places. You're out there on a rickety old bus with no place to shower. Then all of a sudden, Quentin Tarantino comes along and puts a song from 40...

SNAPSHOT

Published Date: November 14, 2014
Wonder Women

Wonder Women

The women farmers of Rangamati wake up before sunrise, prepare breakfast for their family, ensure that their children and spouse are well-fed and clothed and then head out to the farm where they work till sunset.  

Published Date: November 14, 2014
1 MINUTE PLEASE!

1 MINUTE PLEASE!

JAYANTA CHATTOPADHYAY The Multi-Faceted Icon To poetry lovers, he is one of the best poetry reciters in the country. To devoted filmgoers, he is an incomparable doyen of the Bangladeshi film industry. Be it his impeccable portrayal of a strict, ultra-religious patriarch in Matir Moyna or his clear, articulate recitation of Rudrashankar's Utshob, Jayanta Chattopadhyay excels in every role that he undertakes. The Star speaks to this gifted artist about the most interesting role he's had to portray, his formula for success and much more. If you had not been in this century when and where would you have liked to live? If I had the option, I'd have liked to live...

Published Date: November 14, 2014
Voicebox

Voicebox

"When Khaleda Zia curses it works as a blessing for Bangladesh." SHEIKH HASINA Prime Minister While addressing a rally at the capital's Suhrawardy Udyan to mark the Jail Killing Day. The Prime Minister claimed that BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia's curse works as a blessing for Bangladesh and also for the Awami League   "The world is on the...

Published Date: November 14, 2014
HOME AND ABROAD

HOME AND ABROAD

Insensitive, Unprofessional  Dinajpur. Pharmacy staff of the Dinajpur Medical College and Hospital suspended services for two hours on November 9, after a hospital pharmacist was arrested on charges of medicine stealing, leaving patients in want of medicines, in the lurch. Harmful Profits? Lalmonirhat. A farmer waters his tobacco seedbed at Durakuti village in Lalmonirhat...

Cartoon

Published Date: November 14, 2014
Babu

Babu