- February 18, 2018
Farzana, Wahidul, Liton tell court they only returned fees taken in advanceThe three lawyers, held for financing militancy, have confessed to depositing money into a bank account linked to the Shahid Hamza Brigade, but claimed they were only returning an advocacy fee they had taken in advance.
Yesterday, Supreme Court practitioners Barrister Shakila Farzana, daughter of former BNP whip Sayed Wahidul Alam; and Md Hasanuzzaman Liton; and Dhaka judge’s court lawyer Mahfuz Chowdhury Bapon gave confessional statements under the penal code before a Chittagong court, said sources.
The Bangladesh chapter of international corruption watchdog Transparency International has detected massive corruption at every stage of land management by the administration.
A recent study by the organisation reveals that livelihood of the ordinary people, social welfare and safety are interrupted due to lack of political will and coordination among the related agencies, long backlog of pending cases, shortage of budget and manpower, and lack of accountability.
A case was filed yesterday against four people, including three RAB officials, on charges of abducting and killing Chhatra League’s Hazaribagh unit president Arju Mia.
The four are RAB 2 Commanding Officer Colonel Masud Rana, Deputy Assistant Director Shahidur Rahman, Inspector Wahid and RAB informant Ratan. Several unnamed persons were also accused in the case.
Arju was the prime accused in a case filed over the brutal beating of 17-year-old Raja on theft allegations in Hazaribagh, who succumbed to his injuries on August 17.
Sacked Awami League leader and former minister Abdul Latif Siddique has said he would voluntarily resign as a member of parliament.
“I will resign from my parliamentary post as my leader [Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina] wants so…and there is no controversy over the matter,” Latif told journalists yesterday after an Election Commission hearing over the legitimacy of his parliamentary membership.
“This is my decision. There is no need to hold a hearing on this,” he said.
A man was killed in what police said a gun battle between them and robbers at south Keraniganj in the capital early yesterday.
The deceased, Md Yusuf, 35, hailed from Bigha village in Dhaka’s Dohar.
Two others – Ismail and Sohrab – were arrested while fleeing the scene. Police claimed that the trio were members of an inter-district robbery gang. Ismail hails from Matwali village in Shariatpur while 30-year-old Sohrab’s village home is in Madaripur.
People living in the northern parts of country are not only suffering from the ongoing flood, but also scarcity of relief materials.
With the rise of water level in the Teesta, Dhorola and Brahmaputra and Jamuna Rivers, flood situations have worsened in Kurigram, Gainbandha, Nilphamari and Rangpur districts.
In Kurigram, thousands of people of 53 unions have taken shelter in cyclone centres and on embankments, but the flood victims are not happy with relief. Many people are facing acute crisis of pure drinking water and foods.
Finance Minister AMA Muhith has hinted at revising oil prices at retail level within a month in line with the prices in the global market.
“First I will sit with the Energy and Power Division, which has already prepared the papers for revising oil prices. Then, I will meet the Energy Commission to set the price,” he told reporter at the secretariat yesterday.
“I have to settle the matter before going to New York in September.”
Four Ro-Ro ferries have remained out of operation for two weeksFerry services on the Shimulia-Kawrakandi has remained suspended for the last four days due to navigability crisis in the Padma River.
As four Ro-Ro ferries have remained out of operation for two weeks, 14 medium and small ferries were transporting goods and passengers.
But operations of medium and small ferries are halted sometimes due to navigability crisis and strong current in the mighty River Padma, much to cause sufferings for people who depend on the route for their travel.
Instead of time scale and selection grade, the new pay scale for public servants would introduce provisions for awarding a big one-time salary raise for veteran government officials, Finance Minister AMA Muhith has said.
“We will make some revisions to time scale and selection grade before implementing the new pay scale,” the minister told reporters after meeting with outgoing IMF Executive Director Dr Rakesh Mohan and UK State minister for International Development Desmond Swayne at his secretariat office.
The teachers of different public universities across the country observed a three-hour work abstention programme called by Federation of Bangladesh University Teachers’ Association (FBUTA) yesterday.
The teachers of state-owned Khulna University (KU) observed a three-hour work abstention programme demanding independent pay scale for them.
Source said KU Teachers’ Samity announced the event and the teachers took position in Odoimma Bangla statue area on the campus around 10am and stayed there for three hours.
Teachers and students of Dhaka University yesterday observed Black Day in memory of the attack on the university’s teachers, students and officials by the military forces in 2007.
A discussion was also held at the Teachers and Student Center (TSC) around 11:30am. Professor AAMS Arefin Siddique, vice-chancellor of the university, addressed the event as chief guest.
Attorney General Mahbubey Alam yesterday said that the government would move a review petition with the Appellate Division seeking death sentence for convicted war criminal and Jamaat-e-Islami leader Delawar Hossain Sayedee.
“The state will file a review petition against the sentence [of Sayedee] after getting the full judgement,” Mahbubey told reporters at his office. He hoped that the court would overturn the previous verdict and hand down capital punishment.
The government is concerned that the current crisis of onion in India may spark a hoarding spree among local traders to smuggle out locally grown onions to the neighbouring country.
Officials at the Ministry of Commerce said they suspected that the local traders might be looking to take advantage of the crisis in India and make windfall profit by smuggling local onions since its production cost here is less than its current price in India.
Civil society members yesterday expressed their concerns about India’s initiative to implement its river linking project that will divert water from trans-boundary rivers to its dry areas, causing serious damage to the ecology of lower riparian countries.
At a programme in the National Press Club, the speakers urged the government to hold discussions with India – an upper riparian country – to convince them against going ahead with the river linking project.
BNP yesterday refuted prime minister’s claim that Khaleda Zia and her son Tarique Rahman were involved in the August 21 grenade attack.
The party’s International Affairs Secretary Asaduzzaman Ripon said it was very painful and also a cause of concern.
“We want to tell the prime minister that a quarter may be trying to mislead her by giving such false information. Our party does not believe in the politics of killing,” he told a press briefing at the Nayapaltan office.
The flood situation in the north and northeast parts of the country has deteriorated and experts fear that it may not improve in the next 72 hours.
The Brahmaputra-Jamuna and Ganges-Padma river systems are in rising trend, which is likely to continue for the next three days, according to a bulletin by the Flood Forecasting and Warning Centre issued yesterday.
However, the water flow in the Surma-Kushiyara river systems are in falling trend and it may improve further in the next 48 hours.
Malaysian authorities have found mass graves containing the remains of more than 20 people believed to be human trafficking victims near the border with Thailand, police said on Sunday.
The heavily forested Thai-Malay border has been a transit point for smugglers bringing people to Southeast Asia by boat from Myanmar and Bangladesh.
The migrants are often held for ransom in squalid detention camps and according to some accounts face torture and starvation.
The collapse of planned peace talks between India and Pakistan hours before they were to start on Sunday has raised questions about the arch-rivals’ willingness to overcome mutual mistrust, built since their separation almost seven decades ago.
The first-ever consignment of boulder stone, to be used in the construction of Padma Multipurpose Bridge has reached in Bangladesh recently.
Bangladesh Foundry and Engineering Works Limited imported around 228 tonnes of black boulder stone from Jharkhand in India through Hili Land Port in Dinajpur.
The product reached in Bangladesh on Wednesday and is now stored at Panama Link Port in Dinajpur, Hili Land Custom Station Assistant Commissioner Saifur Rahman told the Dhaka Tribune yesterday.
Finance Minister AMA Muhith said the government would start negotiations with International Monetary Fund for the new policy support loan during the World Bank-IMF yearly board meeting in October in Lima, Peru’s capital.
He also hoped the sixth instalment amounting to $140m of the existing Extended Credit Facility loan would be released in September. “An ECF review team will visit Dhaka soon before the release,” Muhith told journalists yesterday after a meeting with the outgoing IMF executive director and UK state minister for international development.