Nation this week
The cabinet committee on government purchases in a meeting approved proposals for importing 3.75 lakh tonnes of fuel oils and 33.6 lakh MMBTU of liquefied natural gas. The committee accepted the proposal of the Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation to buy 3.75 lakh tonnes of fuel oils. Of the amount, 3 lakh tonnes are gas oil to be purchased from the Indonesian company PT Bumi Siak Pusako at Tk 3,274.32 crore and the rest are 75,000 tonnes of jet fuel to be bought from the Singapore-based Unipec at Tk 708 crore.
Presided over by Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal virtually, the meeting also approved four more proposals including the purchase of 33.6 lakh MMBTU of liquefied natural gas at Tk 991.76 crore, per unit costing $29.25 from M/S Vitol Asia Private Limited. The committee also approved a proposal from the Ministry of Home Affairs for a Tk 39.93 crore project on the import of 3 million e-passports.
Amid resistance from environmentalists and locals, the government has withdrawn the decision to construct Kalabagan Police Station on Tetultala playground at Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's instruction. Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal made the announcement at a press conference Thursday. The playground will be open to everyone but it will be under the jurisdiction of Kalabagan police, the home minister added.
On April 24, Kalabagan police picked up Syeda Ratna, who has been leading protests to preserve Tetultala playground, along with her son Mohammad Isha Abdullah. Police released the mother and son around 13 hours later, with an undertaking that she would not get involved in any protests to protect the playground. The next day, green organisations and rights bodies demanded that the government keep the Tetultala playground open to all and stop the construction of a police station there. On January 31, Dhaka Deputy Commissioner's Office handed over the playground to Dhaka Metropolitan Police for constructing a building for Kalabagan Police Station.
A Dhaka court today placed five Dhaka College students on a two-day remand each in a case filed over the death of Nahid Mia during the students-traders clash in Dhaka's New Market area on April 19. The arrestees are: Abdul Kaiyum (24), Polash Mia (24), Mahmood Irfan (24), Foysal Islam (24), and Junaid Bugdadi (19). Metropolitan Magistrate Shanta Akhter passed the order after Md Tariqul Alam Jewel, an inspector of Detective Branch of Police Station and also the investigation officer of the case, produced them before it with a seven-day remand prayer for each.
In the remand prayer, the IO said all the five along with several others were directly involved with the killing of Nahid. Although police held back their party affiliations in student politics, the media published photos of many suspects and identified them as Dhaka College Chhatra League leaders and activists who took part in clashes wearing helmets.
The net profit of leading mobile phone operator Grameenphone fell by 9.07 per cent or Tk 80.81 crore year-on-year in January-March quarter of 2022 despite achieving higher revenue during the quarter under consideration. According to GP's disclosures, the operator's net profit stood at Tk 809.82 crore in Q1 of 2022, from Tk 890.81 crore in the same quarter in the previous year.
Banglalink posted 8.6 percent year-on-year rise in revenue in the same quarter of 2022 on the back of strong data sales. The revenue of Bangladesh's third largest mobile phone operator was Tk 1,242 crore in the first quarter, which was Tk 1,144 crore in the same period in 2021. Demand for mobile data services remained strong in the quarter when data usage rose 56.3 per cent year-on-year and mobile data revenue increased 22.1 per cent year-on-year.
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