Anatul Fateh

The Defection

December 29, 2010
The Defection

My father AFM Abul Fateh died on December 4, 2010. He was among the last survivors of the innermost circle of the Mujibnagar government-in-exile of Bangladesh, in which he served as adviser to the acting president and the most senior civil servant as well as being an Ambassador-at-Large. While there are several achievements in his long career to which one could point, he perhaps is best remembered for his defection in extraordinary circumstances in August 1971 to the Bangladesh government from his service as a Pakistani ambassador: the first serving ambassador to join the Bangladesh liberation movement. Read more »

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Kayes Ahmed

Hope for the land of my father

December 29, 2010
Hope for the land of my father

“Nimu na Sir. Apne Kinna lon”. This was unfamiliar territory and I was looking for a suitable response. For the uninitiated, the kid is about 14 and was selling yellow-looking popcorn in the middle of a traffic jam on my way back from Gulshan to Dhanmondi, a couple of weeks ago. What he was saying was, “I really do not want your charity, please buy the popcorn”. Read more »

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Frank Domenico Cipriani

A Christmas car ride

December 27, 2010
A Christmas car ride

Christmastime in the United States is a magical, special time of year meant to be spent in the warmth and company of family. Special meals, singing Christmas Carols, and gift-exchanging are common traditions that we enjoy during this most special of American holidays. If how we spend this holiday holds any special portents of the year to come, this will be the strangest year of all for me, because this was the strangest Christmas I ever spent. Read more »

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Arshad Mahmud

In praise of ‘dirty old’ Sardarji

December 26, 2010
In praise of ‘dirty old’ Sardarji

Now, at 96 plus, Khuswant Singh appears to have had enough and wants to call it quits. Otherwise, what else can explain his abrupt decision to stop writing — his lifelong passion and the elixir (besides a glass of scotch every evening) that have kept him surprisingly agile, robust and remarkably productive for all these years? Read more »

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Ramya Sarma

Nothing like new technology

December 25, 2010
Nothing like new technology

Many years ago, the phenomenon called the Internet arrived in the subcontinent. It was not very extensive, Google did not exist as a public service and Wiki-anything was still unknown. Connections were slow, the bandwidth was limited and getting online was expensive, a privilege of corporate houses and the wealthy at home. That was the first coming. Read more »

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Hasan Zillur Rahim

Nurturing ‘a beautiful tree’

December 24, 2010
Nurturing ‘a beautiful tree’

“The Beautiful Tree” is a book that lays bare the bankruptcy of Western ideas about free primary education in developing countries. Written by British educator James Tooley and supported by data from the field, it shows how the poor of the world are taking charge of their educational destiny, and how foreign money and governmental collusion threaten to undermine them. Read more »

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Afsan Chowdhury

Grameen Bank: why people are critical and what it tells about us

December 21, 2010
Grameen Bank: why people are critical and what it tells about us

The recent furore about Grameen Bank, Yunus and microcredit may not leave us knowing more about the topics but we certainly can know more about ourselves through our reactions. The debate is not restricted to facts and figures but comments and opinions often exposing our prejudices and anxieties. Read more »

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Bina D'Costa

1971: Rape and its consequences

December 15, 2010
1971: Rape and its consequences

How an Australian doctor tried to help rape victims of Bangladesh

“I was trying to save of what have survived of the children born during the time that the West Pakistani army had Bengali women incarcerated in their commissariats.”– Dr. Geoffrey Davis Read more »

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Rushanara Ali

Cancun summit, a Bangladeshi Mumtaz and what should we do?

December 21, 2010
Cancun summit, a Bangladeshi Mumtaz and what should we do?

As the latest UN climate change summit comes to an end in Cancun, Mexico, there is a feeling of optimism towards an agreement of a new fair climate fund to help poorer countries deal with a changing climate. Read more »

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