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Thursday, May 6, 2010

Biman Bangladesh gets $114m syndicated loan from 10 banks

Dhaka, 6 May : Ten local banks on Thursday handed over a syndicated loan of $114.49 million to Biman to facilitate the national flag carrier making pre-delivery payment for inducting two new aircraft next year.
Bankers termed the move as a landmark agreement in Bangladesh’s banking history with local banks providing loans in foreign currency through offshore units. They said borrowing from local banks would help save as much as $7 million of Biman Bangladesh Airlines which would have to repay the loan with the interests of less than 5 percent within two years.
Eastern Bank is leading the syndicate consisting of AB Bank, BRAC Bank, Dhaka Bank, IFIC Bank, Mutual Trust Bank, National Bank, Prime Bank, The City Bank and Premier Bank. “It indicates that our banking sector has indeed come of age,” said Atiur Rahman, governor of Bangladesh Bank, at the loan handover ceremony at a city hotel.
Biman will use the loan to make PDP for buying two Boeing- 777-300 ER planes, which are expected to be delivered in October 2011. The remaining 8 aircraft - two 777-300 ER, two 737-800 and four 787-8 Dreamliner - are expected to join in Biman fleet in between 2013- 2019.

Celebration of Tagore’s birth anniversary in Andamans
Port Blair, 6 May : To celebrate the 150th birth anniversary of Gurudev Rabindra Nath Thakur here, a core committee named ‘Arghyaanjali’ has been formed in these islands. ‘Arghyaanjali’ will organize various functions related to Gurudev’s life and works, during the next one year, commencing from 9 May, 2010.
Accordingly, four Patrons, Subhash Ranjan Banik, Raz Andamani, Shyamal Chowdhury and Dr. Mrinal Kanti Debnath, a President, Dr. Abani Sinha, two Vice President, Dr. Arun Kumar Barman & NC Ghosh, a General Secretary, Phalguni Gangopadhya have been elected, a communication said.
Court gives death penalty to Kasab
Mumbai, 6 May : Exactly 528 days after he landed on the city’s coast, with nine other gunmen, and mounted attacks that killed 166 people, a special court on Thrusday sentenced Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab (22) to death for murder and waging war against the India.

Special judge M L Tahilyani before pronouncing the sentence, said that Kasab's crime was against humanity and "he has lost right of getting humanitarian treatment. He deserves no lesser punishment than death." The court rejected the argument of Kasab's lawyer that he was influenced and under duress from Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Tayyeba leaders to commit the crime and said: "There is no evidence to prove that. He acted on his own and was mentally prepared to commit the crime." The court also refused to take his young age into account and show leniency and said: "He killed people after meticulous planning by using modern equippment."
On Monday, the special court had convicted Kasab on a total of 80 charges that include being a member of a terrorist organisation (Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Tayyeba), committing a terrorist act, smuggling arms and explosives and setting off bomb blasts in the city. To convict Kasab, the court primarily relied on his confessional statement and held that he had confessed voluntarily. Photos : AFP, PTI

Pilkhana security unit asked to appear before court 8 May
Dhaka, 6 May : The Special Court-6 set up at the Darbar Hall of Bangladesh Rifles on Thursday asked the prosecutor to produce all the 113 accused mutineers of the force’s Pilkhana headquarters security unit before it on 8 May.
The court also adjourned the proceedings of the case till Saturday 12:15pm(BDST). Nayek Subedar Abdul Matin filed the case against the accused minutes after the court start its function. Of the accused, 57 have already been detained in mutiny case filed earlier while the remaining 56 are still serving the unit. The court also ordered to show the 57 arrested in the case and arrest the rest ahead of producing them before the court.

BJP denies having supported 'Gorkhaland' state demand
Kolkata, 6 May : Denying that it had supported the demand by the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha for a separate Gorkhaland to be carved out of West Bengal, the BJP today said it was against the division of the state.
"Shyama Prasad Mukherjee was against division of Bengal. We can't talk of dividing Bengal," BJP National spokesperson Tarun Vijay told reporters here when asked about the party's stand on the issue. To a question, he said the BJP had not made any assurance to the GJM on the matter before last year's Lok Sabha polls.
Former union minister Jaswant Singh, who was expelled from the party, was elected from Darjeeling constituency with the backing of the GJM in the general elections. File Photo

NSCN's Muivah puts off visit to ancestral village in Manipur
PTI, Visema, 6 May : NSCN-IM leader T Muivah on Thursday put off his visit to his ancestral village across the Nagaland border in Manipur's Ukrul district on the request of four Naga NGOs.
Speaking to a small gathering in Visema, where he spent the night after arriving from NSCN-IM headquarters at Camp Hebron near Dimapur on Wednesday, Muivah said he was postponing his visit to Somdal village, where he was born, after the NGOs requested him to put off his visit by a day or two till the situation returns to normal in Manipur.
10,000 fake NID cards seized by Rapid Action Battalion
Dhaka, 6 May : Bangladesh Rapid Action Battalion seized 10,000 fake national identity cards, 2,610 SIM cards of different mobile phone companies conducting a raid in the capital’s Gulistan area early Thursday.
The elite force members also arrested three people in this connection from a shop at Sundarban Square Market in the area. RAB personnel recovered 1,20,000 photos gathered for fake registrations of SIM cards.

150 years on : Rabindranath's magic still alive on screen
Madhusree Chatterjee, New Delhi, 6 May : Rabindranath Tagore's words will once again cast a spell when his 'Noukadubi', a tale of four cross-wired lovers, gets a contemporary makeover in director Rituparno Ghosh's film, 150 years after the Nobel laureate's birth.
A rather progressive Bollywood-style story from "Galpa Guccha" (Collection of Stories published in 1912), "Noukadubi" had raised eyebrows during the bard's lifetime for its "freewheeling slant". Ghosh said he has completed work on the movie starring Prosenjit Chatterjee, Jisshu Sengupta, Raima and Riya Sen. It will be released this year. It was first made into a movie in 1947 by Nitin Bose and produced by Bombay Talkies.
Tagore said the flow of images constitutes cinema. This flow, he wrote, should be used so that it can communicate with the help of words. "This cinema is still enslaved to literature," he wrote in a letter to a long time friend, the brother of late theatre legend Sisir Kumar Bhaduri in 1929.
Tagore, whose birth anniversary falls on 9 May, has left an indelible imprint on the psyche of the Indian movie audience, helped along by ace directors like Satyajit Ray, Tapan Sinha and Rituparno Ghosh. His stories were endowed with natural cinematic potential because they were rich in visual metaphors and dramatic intensity.