Nation this week
Grameenphone deposited Tk 1,000 crore to Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) as per the order of the Supreme Court, over a disputed audit claim by the regulator. Hossain Sadat, head of regulatory affairs of GP, handed over a pay order of Tk 1,000 crore to Jahirul Haque, chairman of BTRC on February 23. Two days earlier, Grameenphone agreed to pay Tk 1,000 crore to telecom regulator BTRC following the Supreme Court.
The operator has taken the decision to pay part of the claim in order to get court protection due to the pressure BTRC applied on it and its management, it said in a press release that was signed off by its head of external communications Md Hasan. The BTRC's actions included declining no-objection certificates since July, issuing show-cause notice for licence cancellation, and denying recycling of number series, it said.
The High Court asked to know about the present treatment of BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia, who is now in the prison cell of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) for treatment. The court ordered the BSMMU vice-chancellor to submit a report by 5pm on Wednesday, February 26 (after we go to press) through the registrar general of the Supreme Court and also set February 27 for holding hearing on Khaleda's bail petition in the Zia Charitable Trust corruption case.
The bench of Justice Obaidul Hassan and Justice AKM Zahirul Huq asked the VC to mention in the report whether Khaleda has given her consent for her advance treatment.If she gave the consent, the VC will have to mention in the report whether the medical board concerned have started her treatment. Speculation has been growing that the BNP chief may be granted bail to go and seek treatment abroad, in line with the wishes of her family.
Global rating agency Moody's Investors Service has said that the conversion of two conventional banks in Bangladesh into Islamic banks is a positive move. It said that the recent in-principle approval of the Bangladesh Bank for Standard Bank Limited and NRB Global Bank Limited to be converted into Islamic banks was "credit positive" for Islamic banks, because their enlarged network would spur more demand for Islamic financial services.
"A bigger Islamic banking presence will raise awareness among the Muslim-majority population on financial products that are Shariah compliant. The subsequent rise in demand is likely to outweigh the increased competition, which will in turn drive growth and profitability of the sector," Moody's said in a research note this week. It said that once Standard Bank and NRB Global Bank were converted into Islamic banks, the market share of Islamic banking in Bangladesh in terms of financing would rise to 27 percent from 25 percent based on September 30, 2019 position. The number of such banks would rise to 10.
Jahangirnagar University decided that it too would not adopt the uniform admission test proposed by the University Grants Commission last December. The decision was made at a meeting of the university's Academic Council, acting JU registrar Rahima Kaneez informed.
The university will enrol the students as per its own admission tests, she said.
The decision came a day after Dhaka University and Rajshahi University decided not to adopt the uniform admission test. Earlier, Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet) and Chattogram University made similar decisions. JU Pro-Vice Chancellor (admin) Prof Amir Hussain said, "Jahangirnagar University has its own heritage and uniqueness. The decision of not adopting the uniform admission test was made unanimously as it is "unclear" and "complex".
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