Human Dev Index: Bangladesh 3 notches up

Bangladesh has moved three notches up to the 136th place among 189 countries in the Global Human Development Index (HDI) 2017, according to the Human Development Report (HDR) of the United Nations Development Programme. Bangladesh had also moved up three spots and ranked 139th in HDI 2015 due to the remarkable progress it made in many socio-economic areas, including life expectancy and per capita income. With a comprehensive statistical annex, the data gives an overview of the state of development across the world, looking at long-term trends in human development indicators across multiple dimensions and for every nation, the 2018 update highlights the considerable progress, but also the persistent deprivations and disparities.

Scrap quota in govt jobs

A high-powered government committee has recommended abolishing the quota system for class-I and class-II jobs in civil service. The development comes in the wake of months-long quota reform demonstrations that saw arrests of the movement's leaders and attacks on students. "Our findings are that there should be no quota for appointments to the posts in 9th to 13th grade, previously dubbed as first class and second class jobs," Cabinet Secretary M Shafiul Alam, who heads the committee, told reporters at the secretariat after the weekly cabinet meeting on September 17. The committee also opined that quota is no longer indispensable to small ethnic groups and physically challenged people, he added.

Greater nat'l unity begins

Prof AQM Badruddoza Chowdhury-led Juktafront and Dr Kamal Hossain-led Jatiya Oikya Prokriya on September 15 formally announced forging of a "greater national unity" to ensure that people elect their representatives through a fair election. The national unity also aims at ensuring a functional democracy in the country. "We the Juktafront and the Jatiya Oikya Prokriya are announcing a joint declaration of a greater national unity which will unite people of all walks of life. We'll forge unity at every locality, every village and every house so that people can get back the ownership of the country," said the eminent jurist. Juktafront Member-Secretary and Nagorik Oikya Convener Mahmudur Rahman Manna, on behalf of the two platforms, read out the joint declaration of the "national unity" with a five-point demand and nine targets.

Dhaka to let Delhi use Ctg, Mongla ports

The Cabinet on September 17 approved a draft agreement to allow India to use Chittagong and Mongla ports to transport cargo to its northeastern states. The decision came at a cabinet meeting at the Prime Minister's Office, with PM Sheikh Hasina in the chair. India would have to follow GATT (General Agreement on Tariff and Trade) and Bangladeshi regulations, pay the customs duties, and buy tax equivalent bonds to transport freight, officials said. The deal will be signed for five years, but it can be extended for another five years automatically. However, any side can cancel the agreement after giving six month's notice and can suspend the deal if a necessity arises.

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