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     Volume 4 Issue 28 | January 7, 2005 |

   Cover Story
   News Notes
   A Roman Column
   Slice of Life
   Time Out
   Straight Talk
   In Retrospect
   Book Review
   Dhaka Diary
   New Flicks

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Dhaka Diary

Ride with Matchmaker
My sister and two of her friends were returning from a friend's place a few days ago. Upon reaching her home one of her friends got off and left. Moving forward a few yards, the rickshaw walla started asking questions about the girl. It seems he was a matchmaker and made a living by fixing and arranging marriages between couples. He was interested in the girl and wanted to get her married. My sister and her friend were dumbfounded to hear such unexpected remarks. The rickshaw wallah went on and mentioned that he charged around Tk 10,000 for each arrangement, though his family was unaware of this habit of his. Next, he turned to my sister, much to her horror and started asking about her whereabouts. This time, both my sister and her friend were scared and thought it would be a good idea to leave the rickshaw at bay from their respective destination. When they were getting off, the puller asked them not to take anything to heart. My sister and her friend sprinted home all the way with a bemused face. Just imagine the plight of young girls in our country, who get marked down for such superficial arrangements just about anywhere by just about anybody!

Maimuna Haq Shaoki Viqarunnisa Noon College

Nothing beats a good beating
On my way to a friends house the other day, I saw a crowd exploding with screams and shouts. As I reached the spot, I saw a young man about the same age as me being brutalised by eleven monstrous men. The man, who was half-dead, gasped for breath while a huge scoundrel trampled on him. The rest of the crowd kicked and punched him. I tried to stop them but it was all in vain. When I found out the "crime", the punishment seemed severe. The young man was just a misguided youth who had stolen a wallet. The crowd was filled with ordinary men who had nothing to do in the scene. They could have taken him to the police. Further more, why do these petty thieves have to go through such severe punishments, while the godfathers and Dons who snatch the living daylights out of us remain disappointingly unpunished?

Azmi Syed Mohammadpur

Cell phone revived!
I was going to my workplace by bus one day, where a passenger suddenly screamed out that some one had sneaked out his mobile phone out from his pocket. The bus was crowded and I was standing uncomfortably. Immediately, a few of the passengers asked the bus conductor to close the bus door so that nobody could get off the bus. The guy who lost the mobile announced that he would check everyone since he was sure that his stolen mobile was still in the bus. The journey suddenly became very interesting and I was looking forward to some real life drama! Some advised him to call his mobile so as to trace it. Before this drama could stretch out like any Hindi soap opera, to my utter disappointment one of the passengers found the mobile, claiming that someone had thrown it to his feet from behind. The drama finally came to a happy ending. Though the victim didn't find the offender, he was content with his precious cell phone. I was happy to find another reason for not owning a mobile myself.

Mohammed Sohel Hara Olympia Palace Restaurant


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