Wasfia Nazreen

No god, no refuge, no New Year for the indigenous of Bangladesh

April 26, 2011
No god, no refuge, no New Year for the indigenous of Bangladesh

Water drenched, tropical sweat-soaked while celebrating Songkrant festival just north of Chiang Mai, Thailand, my phone started getting clogged with alarming news coming from the Chittagong Hill Tracts.

Another arson attack, another settler versus indigenous clash and henceforth more deaths, another authority-backed violent incident in our country, another media outcry that doesn’t tell all the stories. Read more »

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Zeeshan Khan

Bullying Bauls

April 26, 2011
Bullying Bauls

Early this month, Mohammed Fakir and his guests were enjoying an annual conference when they were accosted by religious zealots, conceited enough to arrogate to themselves a moral ascendancy. The gathering was a significant one as it was also the occasion of ‘khilafat’ (or authority) being conferred on a murid (disciple). The Bauls belong to a Tariqah (way) that is at once ancient and eternal. ‘Adi – Adhunik’ – antique and modern, is often used as a playful adage when speaking about a tradition that transmits knowledge and wisdom through an unbroken chain of teachers and students, stretching as far back as perhaps all spiritual discourse does. Read more »

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Badruddin Umar

The story of Dr. Yunus and Grameen Bank

April 25, 2011
The story of Dr. Yunus and Grameen Bank

The government of Bangladesh did not snatch away Nobel Peace Prize from Dr. Muhammad Yunus which was bestowed on him by the imperialist powers, and in any case they have no power to do so. They simply have removed him from his post of managing director of Grameen Bank on legal grounds. This was done according to the rules of the Bangladesh Bank and the law of the land. Read more »

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Frank Domenico Cipriani

Signs and microbes

April 25, 2011
Signs and microbes

This week, April 20th marked the first anniversary of the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Throughout the Christian world, this week is also Holy Week, a period commemorating the Last Supper, the Passion of Jesus which culminates in the celebration of Easter on Sunday. Whatever we God-directed people believe, whatever our religious differences, I think it is always good to reflect on the signs of God’s presence in our lives and feel gratitude for our personal moments of divine intervention. Read more »

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Afsan Chowdhury

Martial law or civil law, share market thieves are above all laws

April 24, 2011
Martial law or civil law, share market thieves are above all laws

How long did it take to cast aside the much awaited share market probe report and focus all attention on whether its author Ibrahim Khaled wanted martial law and why? It was a stroke of luck or brilliance on the part of the scammers to turn the tables and let everyone argue about something quite irrelevant forgetting the report. Not that it says much. Read more »

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Ramya Sarma

The great buying bazaar

April 22, 2011
The great buying bazaar

I was at the mall yesterday and found that almost every store had a huge crowd bogging up the aisles, milling around the checkout counters and trolling through the shelves. It was sale time, a special event that had been announced in every newspaper, magazine, brochure and flyer for many days before the melee actually started. Privileged clients, mainly those with special credit cards from selected stores, had received news of the discounts and deals via text messages on their mobile phones, emails and the occasional pesky phone call. Read more »

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Hasan Reza

Unholy ‘crusade’ against 70 million women

April 21, 2011
Unholy ‘crusade’ against 70 million women

The recent Hartal by Islamist demagogues has claimed to be tantamount to a ‘crusade’ against the ‘infidels’! Past experiences suggest that similar ‘crusades’ by the Islamist zealots have always been waged against the progressive forces of the country (such as against Taslima Nasrin, Humayun Azad and Shamsur Rahman). In the present occasion, the ‘infidels’ are not communists or progressive culturists but the leader of the centre-left party Awami League and the country’s sitting prime minister Sheikh Hasina. Read more »

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MK Aaref

Our ‘Yellow Dog’ jingoism

April 20, 2011
Our ‘Yellow Dog’ jingoism

Years ago, as a student in the US, I came across a table in a convention…they were called ‘Yellow Dog Democrats’. Some elderly patrons even had pins with yellow dogs on it. Somewhat baffled, I finally asked what it was all about. They said they were the most ardent followers of the Democratic Party in Texas. Didn’t sound very exciting and I guess it showed on my face. ‘Well, son’, the gentleman explained…. ‘If the Texas Democratic Party even puts up a yellah dawg as a candidate for any post….we are gonna vote the dawg in….’ Read more »

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Frank Domenico Cipriani

Happy New Year

April 19, 2011
Happy New Year

The rain battered our house last night. The mice sought refuge from the storm under my roof. Every springtime, where I live, the mice grow bold. Born in the fields just beyond the house during an unseasonable warm snap, when the weather turns rainy or cold, they come. Every year they decide that they like it better in our already crowded house and they stay. It is a cushy life for them, so they grow fat, tax our resources, and leave a mess. Last night we had a storm, and the river flooded. Now the house is loud with tiny refugees. Read more »

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