Perspective | The Daily Star
  • Workers' health and safety must come first

    Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) failures have turned into distress in all sectors—most importantly in transport, construction, ship-breaking yards and the chemical- and leather-processing industries. This has happened all over the country, but most frequently in the districts of Dhaka, Chittagong, Gazipur, Sylhet, and Narayanganj.

  • A Requiem for February

    Pahela Falgun, the first day of spring, did not work its magic of rebirth upon my soul. I felt no quickening, burgeoning re-awakening of the creative spirit in myself, nor did I find it in the natural world around me.

  • HSC Exam question Paper leak in 2018

    Plugging question leaks: A technical solution

    A spate of question leaks in public examinations has left the education authorities deeply embarrassed and, it appears, at a loss about what they can do.

  • Safeguarding migrant workers is in everyone's interest

    Social justice is a cornerstone of lasting peace and prosperous coexistence. On this World Day of Social Justice, we are focusing on the world's 150 million migrant workers, many of whom face exploitation, discrimination and violence and lack even the most basic protections. This is particularly true for women, who make up 44 percent of migrant workers.

  • Employment growth falls in industrial sector of Bangladesh

    A false alarm?

    Following the visit of robot Sophia to Bangladesh in December last year, there has been a lot of discussion about the possibilities of using automation in industries and its impact on jobs. As the ready-made garment industry is our lifeline, the discussion has mainly been on the impact of automation in the RMG industry.

  • Mother tongues in a globalising world

    It is a matter of great national satisfaction and pride that February 21, our Amar Ekushey, is being observed all over the world today as the International Mother Language Day. The Unesco General Conference had taken a decision to that effect on November 17, 1999, when it unanimously adopted a resolution tabled by Bangladesh and co-sponsored by 28 countries. Today, people in 185 countries will take a fresh vow to preserve their mother languages, as our immortal language martyrs had done 66 years ago. What a befitting tribute to our martyrs!

  • Digitised Public Exams: An innovation that can solve many problems

    The government is finally considering something that could really stop the question paper leak crisis. The education secretary has reportedly hinted at using tablet computers for taking tests. In this method, a question set will be prepared randomly from a question bank 30 minutes before the test.

  • It could have been better

    Bangladesh has scored 28 on a scale of 0-100 according to the Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) 2017 released by Transparency International (TI) on February 22, 2018. The score is two points higher than that of 2016, which ranked Bangladesh 17th from below, two steps better than the previous year's position of 15th. Counting from the top we are at 143, which is also an improvement of two steps from 2016.

  • BDR carnage

    Pilkhana carnage: How do we define justice?

    Having fallen in my life's greatest dungeon of despair nine years ago, I am writing this with a heavy heart.

  • Emerging technologies for an emerging economy

    Bangladesh has been riding the growth waves in the last two-and-a-half decades with spectacular results: our exports grew six folds, our GDP quadrupled and our extreme poverty levels got slashed by more than half, not to mention our 30 percent increase in longevity and other human development achievements.

  • Only a free media can ensure prosperity for Bangladesh

    I would like to say with the utmost earnestness that a prosperous Bangladesh needs a very vibrant, free media. A thriving Bangladesh needs journalism of the highest standard. It does not need restrictive laws like the proposed Digital Security Act. Instead, a buoyant Bangladesh needs a very competitive private sector, a highly disciplined banking sector and an accountable and transparent administration.


    The Chief of Army Staff of India, General Bipin Rawat, has not minced his words. He was unambiguous and forthright. At a seminar jointly organised by the Centre for Joint Warfare Studies and the Ministry of Defence, recently held in Delhi, the army chief shared his thoughts on Northeast India. What was meant to be a talk of a professional soldier on 'Bridging Gaps and Securing Borders' of the region turned out to

  • Rohingya refugees

    Why the ultimate solution lies within Myanmar

    Although steps are being taken to initiate the return of Rohingya refugees, the likelihood of this happening remains low.

  • Rural

    Rural social fabric shattered by politics

    Since I left home to pursue higher studies, I have been visiting my parents, in the village, two to three times a year.

  • Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman on 7th march historic speech

    The voice that touched people's hearts

    The March 7 address by Bangabandhu—the great poetry of our emancipation—is a time-tested speech. This great speech still ignites people. It flames forth our unquenchable thirst for justice. It makes us move in tune with the spirit of the Liberation War. Martha Nussbaum calls it a 'love', and thus distinguishes it from the simple embrace of principles. This love involves the feeling that the nation is one's own.

  • Now a part of world heritage

    People of Bangladesh know very well the intrinsic value of the historic speech delivered by Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib on March 7, 1971. A country of the South and its leadership in the struggle for national emancipation has too often been presented through the prism of the North, the power base of most things on earth.

  • Attaining gender equality is everyone's responsibility

    Today is International Women's Day, a day to celebrate how far we have come in our journey towards gender equality. It is also an opportunity to take stock of how much more we need to do for a Planet 50-50 by 2030, where no woman or girl will suffer from gender-based discrimination and violence—a commitment that we made when UN Member States adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2016.

  • The widening scourge of sexual harassment

    Violence against and violation of women result from “some of the worst forms of discrimination” that continue unabated in a variety of ways: mistreatment, harassment, lewd stares, groping, maiming, raping, and even murdering. With choices that matter to women in their hands, men seem to have been endowed with an arcane sense of entitlement to do as they wish with the lives of women.

  • A field day for sexual predators

    There are few things that could make a college student so disgusted at her fellow countrymen to make her want to not live in that country anymore. Being molested by a mob of men on the streets—supposedly there in celebration of a major milestone of this country's independence—is definitely one of them.

  • biologic drugs

    Developing our own biologic drugs

    The increase in the burden of chronic diseases globally has called for greater measures in ensuring safe and effective patient treatment.

  • Afzalunnessa

    A shameless plug for my octogenarian mum

    Dr Afzalunnessa, retired professor of anaesthesiology, was conferred an honorary doctorate by the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University at its third convocation on February 19 in recognition for her four decades of service to anaesthesiology in Bangladesh.

  • A monumental display of moral depravity

    Like many millennials who grew up reading Muhammed Zafar Iqbal's coming-of-age novels Hatkata Robin, Dipu Number Two, Amar Bondhu Rashed and his sci-fi books, I was once fascinated by every word that he wrote.

  • ICC referral: Need of the hour

    On Friday, Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein, the United Nations human rights chief, called for allegations of atrocities committed against the Rohingyas to be referred to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for prosecution.

  • A successful formula

    Vygotsky, a Soviet educational psychologist, describes learning as a social process in his socio-cultural theory of human learning. According to this concept, learning takes place first at the social level through interactions with others. Another aspect of his theory is the idea that the learners are mentally prepared to a certain level and they require support from a teacher or more experienced peers in order to fully develop.

  • Facing the challenges ahead

    On March 16, at the UN, the Committee for Development and Policy (CDP) in its First Triennial Assessment meeting cleared Bangladesh's eligibility for graduation to a developing country. After our independence in 1971, what could be more glorious than this announcement, since Bangladesh was once despised by Henry Kissinger as a “bottomless basket." Now, this is the moment of truth, rejoice and

  • MFS 2.0: Financial inclusion and fulfilment

    There are over 50 million people in Bangladesh who access and use financial services from their mobile phones.

  • How to do it the right way

    Nowadays, one need not go beyond their locality to discover a signboard of yet another newly established school advertising their use of some “new technology”, specifically “digital blackboards” (apparently meant to act as a magical word). Their proclamations, along with the increasing roster of academics and educators who regularly endorse a change in the prevailing classroom dynamics of the country, begs the question: how do we effectively modernise the classroom in full view of their practical shortcomings?

  • Rohingya refugee crisis, UN General Assembly and Bangladesh diplomacy

    The latest incident of the Rohingya refugee influx into Bangladesh has produced a scenario which is different from earlier influxes in two aspects: one is humanitarian, which can be legally interpreted in various ways, from forced displacement to genocide. Killings, torture, rape, forced expulsion and starvation has driven nearly one million Rohingyas to take refuge in Bangladesh since August 2017.

  • Corporal punishment ban and the aftermath

    On January 13, 2010 a ban was imposed on corporal punishment by the divisional bench declaring it as “cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment and a clear violation of a child's fundamental right to life, liberty and freedom.”

  • Shadowtime: Notes on living in two temporal scales simultaneously

    Memories of my father are keeping me awake tonight. Two hours to Fajr Azan on the Friday before Independence Day.