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Monday, August 2, 2010

Bangladesh RM garment workers clash again over pay structure

Reuters, Ruma Paul, Dhaka, 2 August : Textile workers demanding higher wages clashed with police in Bangladesh on Monday on a fourth day of protest despite their leaders agreeing overnight to a new pay structure announced last week.
At least 70 people including police were injured in violence at Ashulia, Savar and Narayanganj, around the capital Dhaka, witnesses said. Police used teargas, batons and rubber bullets to disperse the protesters who barricaded roads and attacked vehicles, they said. Around 300 people were injured and dozens detained in similar unrest over the past three days, police said.
On Thursday, the government nearly doubled the minimum wage for millions of workers in the key export garment industry to 3,000 taka ($43) from 1,662 taka, but it fell far short of labour union demands of 5,000 taka. But representatives of 42 unions agreed to accept the new wages at a meeting with ministers, lawmakers, garment factory owners and chamber leaders late on Sunday. Photos : Reuters, AP

CPI(M) ridicules Mamata's allegation of plot to "kill her"
Kolkata, 2 August : Rubbishing Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee's allegation that there was a conspiracy to eliminate her, the CPI(M) today described it as a diversionary tactic to target Left leaders.
"Levelling such charges against us is a sinister plot to eliminate some Left leaders and workers in the state," CPI(M) politburo member and state secretary Biman Bose told a party rally at Dharmatolla here. Without naming Banerjee, Bose said that he had read newspaper reports about her allegation. "This is nothing but a story to mislead and divert the people's attention," he said.
Recounting the murder of Forward Bloc veteran Hemanta Basu here in the early 70s, Bose said that the CPI(M) was falsely implicated in the case, but inquiries later revealed otherwise.

Indian FM Pranab likely to visit Bangladesh on 7th August
New Delhi, 2 August : Indian Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee is expected to pay a day-long visit to Dhaka on 7 August.
During his visit, New Delhi and Dhaka are expected to sign an accord for the one billion dollar line of credit India has already agreed to give to Bangladesh, reports our correspondent in New Delhi. Mukherjee, who will be going to Dhaka by a special flight, is expected to call on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and meet his Bangladeshi counterpart AMA Muhith, sources in New Delhi said yesterday.

Intl Crimes Tribunal : Jamaat leaders to be kept in custody
Dhaka, 2 August : In its second ruling on Monday, the International Crimes Tribunal ordered four top leaders of the fundamentalist Jamaat-e-Islami to be held in custody until further orders.
Jamaat chief Matiur Rahman Nizami, secretary general Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mojaheed, assistant secretary general Muhammad Kamaruzzaman and Abdul Quader Molla were sent back to Dhaka Central Jail after a brief hearing that lasted barely 15 minutes. The tribunal also asked authorities to keep them arrested and adjourned the hearing without specifying a date for the next hearing.
The four have been charged with crimes against humanity during nation's war of independence in 1971.

Explosives to disrupt IDay celebrations in Assam,recovered
PTI Guwahati, 2 August : Three Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), weighing over 11 kgs, and a timer-fitted bomb planted by suspected NDFB militants to disrupt the Independence Day celebrations, were recovered from different parts of Assam on Monday.
The police said acting on a tip-off, a joint team of police and CRPF personnel recovered an IED, weighing five kgs, from Morihuti village in Majuli. In another incident, one such team recovered an IED, weighing five kgs, and several metres of fused wire at Gokulkata village in Kokrajhar district. They also recovered an IED, weighing more than a kg and a timer-fitted bomb near NH-37 between Boko and Singra village in Kamrup (Rural) district. All the IEDs have been defused by bomb experts of the Army, the police said.

West Bengal govt invites Subash Ghisingh for 3 Aug talks
Kolkata, 2 August : After two years in political wilderness, Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF) chairman Subash Ghisingh, the uncrowned king of Darjeeling for 20 years is back with a bang in active politics. On 3 August, he will join the talks between the state government and political outfits of Darjeeling except the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) in Kolkata.
“We have invited all political outfits of Darjeeling except GJM and the GNLF is one of them. We believe that without the GNLF, no solution can be found,” said Ashok Bhattacharya, who, alongwith the Minister for Health and Family Welfare Surya Kanta Mishra will lead the state government in 3 August talks.

Bangladesh achives 91% rate for project implementation
Tradingmarkets, Dhaka, 2 August : Some Tk 25,902 crore (US$3,726.9 million) was spent in the 2009-10 fiscal year out of the Tk 28,500 crore revised Annual Development Programme (ADP), achieving a 91 per cent implementation rate.
The implementation rate for the last fiscal year is five per cent higher than the 2008-09 fiscal year (86 per cent), according to a source at the Implementation Monitoring and Evaluation Division (IMED). READ FULL STORY

Somdev cracks top-100 in ATP rankings, rises to world's 96
PTI, New Delhi, 2 August : Rising tennis star Somdev Devvarman today became the first Indian after Leander Paes to break into the top-100 of ATP rankings, reaching a career-high 96th in the latest list issued today.
Somdev rose seven rungs in the chart and has 540 points. The 25-year-old is the first Indian in 11 years to be inside the top-100 bracket. Paes was ranked as high as 73 in 1998 before he decided to focus on doubles. Ramesh Krishnan (23rd in 1985) and Vijay Amritraj (16th in 1980) were the other Indian players, who figured in the top-100 in their playing days.
Tripura boy Somdev rose to prominence in 2007 and has since made the cut for India's Davis Cup. He has now become the top singles player for the country and has also been a proven giant-killer on the ATP circuit.
Mamata asks Home Min. to look into illegal arms stockpile
Kolkata, 2 August : Alleging that the Left Front government was supplying arms to CPI(M) cadres and ministers, Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee today requested Union Home Minister P Chidambaram to look into the matter and take action. "I request Union Home Minister to look into the illegal arms stockpile of the CPI(M) cadres and seize them.
The state government is supplying arms to them as well as ministers and these arms are being transported to different areas. The safety and security of the people will be at stake," she told reporters here.

Swine flu spreads in West Bengal affects 102, bulletin said
Kolkata, 2 August : Eight new cases of swine flu, which has claimed three lives in West Bengal, were registered today as the total number of those affected by the deadly virus mounted to 102.
The condition of two persons was critical, a health department bulletin said. Claiming that the situation was not alarming though it was yet to be brought under control, health officials said that state and private hospitals and clinics have been asked to open quarantine wards for swine flu victims.

Maharashtrian butterfly researcher freed in Arunachal's hill
IBNS, Guwahati, 2 August : A renowned butterfly researcher from Maharashtra, Vilasrao Vadekar, who was kidnapped by Bodo rebels from a remote location in Arunachal Pradesh in May, was freed by his abductors late Sunday evening.
Police said on Monday that Vadekar was set free by his abductors in Arunachal Pradesh, from where he contacted the state’s police. He was brought to Guwahati late on Sunday night and is expected to return home at the earliest.
His family members, some of whom are believed to be here, are reported to have bought his release by paying a hefty ransom to the anti-talks faction of the National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB), which had kidnapped him. No confirmation on payment of ransom has been received from any official source.

World Bank to the aid of world's largest mangrove forest
Dhaka, Kolkata, 2 August : The World Bank (WB) is helping Bangladesh carry out a series of studies to develop a programme for sustainable development of the Sundarbans, the world's single largest mangrove forest in the country's south-western part. A comprehensive plan based on these studies would be developed to integrate prioritized interventions to address the region's main conservation and development challenges.
The studies will be drawn upon the main challenges of poverty reduction, climate change adaptation, and biodiversity conservation in the Sundarbans, a WB release was quoted as saying by national news agency BSS on Sunday.
The studies, expected to be completed by September 2011, will take full account of the distinction between protected areas (where resource extraction is not allowed) and surrounding inhabited areas for assessing the development challenges of the Sundarbans, and identifying alternative interventions to address them. Bangladesh and India share the world's largest mangrove forest Sundarbans and 62 percent of the Sundarbans falls in Bangladesh.