(L) The dead body of Akbar, a 17 years old lion is prepared for cremation by Zoo officials, at Assam State Zoo premises in Guwahati on Friday. (R) Zoo Doctor inspects the dead body of Akbar.The lion was died on Thursday night due to old age and the population of Lions in Assam state Zoo decline to seven, Zoo official said. န Photos : Chinmoy Roy
Dhaka, 29 January : Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the 11th South Asian Games following a colourful ceremony at Bangabandhu National Stadium Friday afternoon.
The 133-minute opening ceremony has been split into three parts. The first part included march-past, entrance of Games mascot 'Kutumb' - which represents national bird doyel (magpie robin) - and oath taking before Runa Laila rendered the theme song. A display of a riot of colours by some 7,500 performers from different schools, colleges, Bangladesh Army and Ansar and VDP was supposed to take place in the second part. The core and third part of the ceremony would be an acrobatic and laser show, first of its kind in this subcontinent.
State-run Bangladesh Television was airing the ceremony live from the stadium. န Photos : Anisur Rahman, AP
PTI, New Delhi, Kolkata, 29 January : The Centre has approved two major flood management projects for West Bengal, including one in the Sundarbans, at a total estimated cost of over Rs 5,660 crore.
The Centre sanctioned the Rs 5,032 crore financial aid for rehabilitation works in the Sunderbans, said Irrigation Minister Subhas Naskar, adding that Union Irrigation minister Pawan Bansal has also assured to sanction Rs 630 crore for dredging work of Keleghai, Kapaleswari and Baghai in West Midnapore district. န File Photos : Indrajit Dutta
Kolkata, 29 January : Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram has convened a meeting of Chief Ministers and key officials of four eastern States hit by Maoists extremist activities. The meeting is scheduled to be held on 9 February at the Writer’s Buildings the State Secretariat, West Bengal Home Secretary Ardhendu Sen said.
The meeting will be held two days after a congregation of Chief Ministers in New Delhi, to be held by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. The meeting is scheduled to discuss internal security and other common issues.
She said after inaugurating the newly constructed structure and Minar of Baitul Mukarram National Mosque in the morning. Hasina said there are one or more mosques in each village of the country and there are also Imams and muajjins in the mosques. She said her government wants to utilize these mosques as center for all pro-people development activities like ‘Masjid-e-Nababi’ by relating with all activities of religious matters and human welfare.
The prime minister said the present government is implementing various mosque-based development works and will expand these programmes in the future. န File Photo : Focus Bangla
The spot, to be inaugurated 22 February, will provide tourists a respite from urban drudgery with an experience of living in a village ambience. The visitors can relish rural food and live in huts which would, however, have all modern amenities. Mukherjee said the government will play the role of a facilitator and do the marketing. "We will train the locals who will cater to the guests. This will increase rural employment," he said before inaugurating a two-day conference Destination East organised by the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII).
West Bengal Tourism Development Corporation (WBTDC) managing director T.V.N. Rao said the tourists can also see for themselves the work of rural artisans making clay models and other handicrafts. The minister said east and north east India received 1.13 million tourists every year.
Dhaka, 29 January : An official and nine players of Nepal, who are here to participate the SA Games, were injured in an elevator crash at a city hotel in the capital.
The injured players were rushed to Square Hospital. The players told reporters that the elevator of the Hotel Imperial fell to the ground tearing its strings. Of the nine athletes, seven are members of Judo team and two others of weightlifting team of Nepal. READ BBC STORY
Dhaka, 29 January : None of the remaining six convicted killers of Bangabandhu, now holed up in different countries, could be brought back yet despite Bangladesh government's diplomatic manoeuvres.
The government even does not yet have specific information about the whereabouts of a number of the absconding killers because of their frequent change of location. It already sought assistance from the Interpol in this regard, but for no result. Law Minister Shafique Ahmed, however, yesterday claimed that the government has information about the fugitives and is working to bring them back to face justice.
The six absconding killers are Lt Col (dismissed) Khandaker Abdur Rashid, Lt Col (relieved) Shariful Haque Dalim, Lt Col (retd) Nur Chowdhury, Lt Col (retd) AM Rashed Chowdhury, Capt Abdul Mazed and Risalder Moslehuddin.
Five of the 12 convicted killers of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman were executed early yesterday at Dhaka Central Jail. Another convict, Aziz Pasha, died in Zimbabwe in 2002.
Sources in the administration and intelligence agencies said the government has specific information about two of the six absconding convicts. Lt Col (retd) AM Rashed Chowdhury now resides in the USA and is trying for getting political asylum in Canada, they said. Another convict Lt Col (retd) Nur Chowdhury, after a long stay in Germany, has also sought political asylum in Canada. No specific information regarding the locations of four others is available, but different sources say they are hiding in Libya, Pakistan, Kenya and Hong Kong.