Nation this week
Jatiya Party's Mostafizar Rahman Mostafa was reelected Rangpur mayor while the ruling Awami League candidate, in the fourth position, managed to bag only 8 percent of the vote in the city corporation polls. Mostafizar, running with JP's symbol of "plough", got 146,798 votes and his closest rival, Bangladesh Islami Andolon nominee Amiruzzaman Pial, got 49,892, said Returning Officer Abdul Baten. AL candidate Hosne Ara Lutfa Dalia got fewer votes than a local AL leader who ran as an independent.
Local AL leader Latifur Rahman Milan got 33,833 votes, considerably more than Dalia's 22,306. There are 426,470 voters in the city, and the turnout was 65.91 percent, Baten said while reading out the results from the 229 polling centres. Malfunctioning Electronic Voting Machines slowed down polling to such an extent that polling at some centres went on until around 7:30pm, nearly three hours past the deadline. However, no major incident of violence or vote rigging was reported.
The authorities won't be able to deliver 25 percent of the primary textbooks on January 1, the first day of the next academic year thanks to the high price of paper, load-shedding and delays in placing the work orders. The delay, however, will not cause many problems as not all students show up on the first day of school to collect all their textbooks, said Farhadul Islam, chairman of the National Curriculum and Textbook Board.
All primary and secondary students are expected to get their full set of textbooks by January 10, Islam added. Until December 28, 62 percent of 10 crore primary textbooks and 80 percent of about 24 crore books for secondary students have reached the upazilas. The paper crisis was a big issue but several printing companies that won the tender for printing primary textbooks did not sign a contract with the NCTB, said NCTB member Moshiuzzaman. After much delay, the work of printing primary books began on December 1.
Bangladesh authorities recently barred a Russian vessel under United States sanction from entering its waters. The vessel, carrying a consignment of products for the Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant, was scheduled to reach Mongla Port with cargo for the Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant on December 24. Officials said that the authorities, being alerted by the US authorities on December 20, barred the ship from entering Bangladesh territory.
Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant Project is being implemented by the state-run Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission under the Science and Technology Ministry, with financial, technical and technological support given by Russia through its state-run nuclear agency, Rosatom. Science and Technology Minister Yeafesh Osman said that the ship was sent with the consignment by mistake and the Russians would replace it with another ship to carry the consignment to the Bangladesh port. The news of barring the Russian vessel under US sanction came when Russian and the US were involved in a debate regarding internal affairs of Bangladesh.
Two Bangladesh nationals were shot to death allegedly by members of the Indian Border Security Force along Dolpara border under Hatibandha upazila in Lalmonirhat district Thursday, a Bangladeshi official said. The victims are Monglu, 36, son of Abdus Samad and Sadik, 22, son of Hafizul Islam of Dolpara village in the upazila.
Abdul Jalil, commanding officer of Dolpara Border Guard Bangladesh camp, said that the BSF members opened fire on some Bangladesh nationals, including Monglu and Sadik, who went to the bordering area to bring cattle. They died on the spot, the BGB official said. At least 1,236 Bangladeshis were killed in shootings by the Indian border force between 2000 and 2020, according to rights organisation Odhikar. According to Ain o Salish Kendra, at least 14 Bangladeshis were killed by the Indian BSF in the first nine months of 2022, while at least 18 Bangladeshis were killed along the border with India in 2021.
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