Nation this week
The pilot of the US-Bangla plane that crashed in Nepal killing 51 people last March "seemed to have an emotional breakdown", according to the final report by Nepalese authorities into the disaster. It was initially thought that poor communication with air traffic control may have been to blame, but that hardly finds mention in the final report. Investigators now say the pilot was ranting to crew members and even smoking in the cockpit, due to stress.
Nepal's Accident Investigation Commission said in its report that the captain of US-Bangla Airlines flight BS211 was "very much emotionally disturbed and stressed" because a female colleague, who was not on board the plane, had "questioned his reputation" as a good flight instructor. Bangladesh's lone representative to the investigation commission however objected that the report only blamed the pilot without mentioning the faults of the Air Traffic Control (ATC) of Tribhuvan International Airport.
From the first day of the next month, no mobile phone operator will be allowed to offer internet packages with less than three days' validity. Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) has issued an order recently in this regard. As per the order, the validity of all the internet packages/offers/bundles will be at least three days and this will come into effect on February 1. It also said the order will be reviewed after one month.
Meanwhile, a subscriber will be allowed to run up a bill of Tk 5 under the 'Pay Per Use' system and on expiry of the limit, he or she will have to opt in or subscribe to an internet package or bundle or offer. This came into effect last week.
Shariful Islam alias Khaled, the last of the several key accused in the Holey Artisan Bakery attack case, confessed his involvement in the sensational 2016 attack that left 20 people killed, mostly foreigners. He also owned up to his role in the murder of Rajshahi University's Professor AFM Rezaul Karim Siddiquee. The elite force members arrested the militant along with four of his accomplices from Nachole upazila of northern Chapainawabganj.
Mufti Mahmud Khan, director of RAB at a press briefing told the media that Khaled had sent Tk 39 lakh to a Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen (JMB) leader, Sarwar Jahan, for staging the Holey Artisan cafe attack. The money had been sent from a country in the Middle East. Khaled was a meritorious student, but dropped out of the English department of Rajshahi University in 2013, fell in with JMB.
The maiden session of the 11th parliament was set to commence on January 30, after Dhaka Courier goes to press for the week, about a month after the national election held on December 30th that gave rise to a number of concerns and failed to address the nation's polarisation. Sheikh Hasina will take the reins for a 4th term as prime minister, after her Awami League won an absolute majority bagging 258 seats.
Jatiya Party secured 22 seats and will act as the main opposition in parliament. Although BNP and its alliance partners joined the election, the party bagged only six seats while its alliance partner Gano Forum two seats. They have rejected the results and are demanding a reelection. And although the two lawmakers-elect of Gonoforum have expressed a willingness to join parliament, their party is said to be holding them back.
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