Saturday, August 17, 2013

The hidden danger of climate change

Climate change is just one of the destructive forces to blight south-western Bangladesh. Naturally occurring events (which are independent of climate change), and poor governance, are also weighing heavily on this troubled region. In order to effectively combat the destructive processes that combine to shape this corner of South Asia it is crucial that we gain a proper understanding of the issues at hand. We can begin by acting to distinguish between the causes of the impacts we see, and not settling for the use of ‘climate change’ as a one-size-fits-all explanation. The southwest corner of Bangladesh is not an easy place to live in. If you speak with villagers in districts like Satkhira (who count the Bengal tiger as a neighbour) you quickly realise you are talking with some of the most resilient people on the planet. The scale of problems they face can be difficult to comprehend: extreme poverty pervades the lives of many, the seasons are changing and rains are coming later, agricultural yields are decreasing, flooding and water-logging is decimating livelihoods, freshwater is becoming scarce as salinity increases and powerful cyclones demolish homes and erase lives. People don’t cite Bangladesh as the frontline of climate change for nothing. By the year 2050 sea levels here are expected to rise by up to 40 centimetres. Average temperatures, which have risen 0.74°C in the past 60 years, are predicted to jump up to a further 4°C by the close of the century. There is little doubt that climate change will have a profound effect in Bangladesh. Experts anticipate further decreases in food security and the availability of freshwater and increased flooding. One model predicts that by the year 2100 climate change will displace a staggering 16-20 million people in Bangladesh; a group roughly twice the current population of the Dhaka city!

Christian weddings

Christians believe that marriage is a gift from God, one that should not be taken for granted. It is the right atmosphere to engage in sexual relations and to build a family life. Getting married in a church, in front of God, is very important. A marriage is a public declaration of love and commitment. This declaration is made in front of friends and family in a church ceremony. The history of marriage Marriage vows, in the form “To have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death us do part”, have been recited at UK church weddings since 1552. But before the wedding service was written into the Book of Common Prayer, marriages were much more informal: couples could simply promise themselves to one another at any time or place and the spoken word was as good as the written contract. In this audio clip, three academics - Janet Soskice, Reader in Modern Theology and Philosophical Theology, Cambridge University; Frederik Pedersen, Lecturer in History, Aberdeen University; and Christina Hardyment, social historian and journalist - discuss the history of and the role of state and church in marriage.

Rights of women in Islam

Mankind consists of men and women. Both of them have contributed to the development of human civilization throughout ages. Before the advent of Islam women were in a very low position. They were treated like animals. It was considered that women are created only to serve men. Islam raised women’s status from chattels and playthings to respectable human beings, equal to men in all respects. Islam has granted definite rights to women as daughters, sisters, mothers and wives. Islam has granted woman due social and economic rights, elevated her status, and provided moral and legal safeguards in its system for the protection of her rights and status. Woman enjoys the rights to inheritance from her husband, father, children and other near relations. All this wealth is her own property and she can use it, invest it, or give it away to others in any manner as she wishes. She has complete freedom to choose her husband and no one has the right to marry her to anyone without her consent. In Islam women have the same right as men to acquire knowledge. In fact, Islam has given real freedom and emancipation to women and elevated them to the status of humanity with dignity, honour and grace. It is said in the holy Quran: “O mankind! fear your Lord Who created you from a single soul and from it created its mate.” (Sura Nisa: Ayat 1) “O mankind! Indeed I (Allah) have created you from male and female and made you people and tribes that you may know one another.” (Sura Hujurat: Ayat 13). In holy Quran we see that Allah Jalla Shanuhu says: “Men shall have the benefit of what they earn and women shall have the benefit of what they earn.” (Sura Nisa: Ayat 32). Allah Jalla Shanuhu says: “I never let go to waste the labour of anyone who works among you whether male or female, for in My sight all of you are alike.” (Sura Al-Imran: Ayat 195). Islam has changed the mentality not only of men about women, but also of women about themselves. The writer is an Islamic Thinker and a former Director, Islamic Foundation, Bangladesh.

Holi: The festival of colours

Holi is the Hindu festival that welcomes the spring and celebrates the new life and energy of the season. Although Holi has religious roots, not much religious activity is involved in its celebration. Holi is the most energetic Indian festival, filled with fun and good humour; even the strict rules of separation between castes are abandoned. Holi is also called ‘The Festival of Colours’, and people celebrate the festival by smearing each other with paint, and throwing coloured powder and dye around in an atmosphere of great good humour.

International Women's Day

The idea of an international women’s day was first put forward at the turn of the 20th century. In 1910 the first international women’s conference was held in Copenhagen by the Second International and an international women’s day was established by German Socialist Clara Zetkin. In 1911, International Women’s Day was marked by more than a million people in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland on March 19. In 1913, International Women’s Day was transferred to March 8 and this day has remained the global date for International Women’s Day ever since. In 1975, the United Nations started celebrating March 8 as International Women’s Day. The UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, in his message, said ‘This year on International Women’s Day, we convert our outrage into action. We declare that we will prosecute crimes against women — and never allow women to be subjected to punishments for the abuses they have suffered.’ the UN Women executive director, Michelle Bachelet, called for action on ending violence against women. In her message for the day, Bachelet called on the international community to deliver on their commitments and to protect women’s right to live free of violence. Iterating that a change is possible and is happening in many parts of the world already, Bachelet called on all governments to accelerate progress and concrete policy actions to end violence against women. ‘This year on International Women’s Day, we say enough is enough.’ ‘Discrimination and violence against women and girls has no place in the 21st century. It is time for governments to keep their promises and protect human rights in line with the international conventions and agreements that they signed onto.

Gender inquality in Bangladesh

Gender inequality is the most pervasive, since it is common among the people belonging to all ethnicities and religions. Half of the country’s total population, after all, is women. The multifarious discriminations against women are being manifested in various forms, such as under representation in the policymaking bodies of the political parties, different branches of the state and socio-cultural organisations; less wages than their male counterparts for the equal amount of works in different industries; patriarchal domination of women by male members of the family; and so on and so forth. With half of the population, some 70 million, remaining politically, economically and culturally discriminated against and, that too, at all levels, ranging from the family to the state, the ruling class’s claims of making democratic progress is nothing but a travesty of truth. However, the left-leaning political parties are particular about mentioning the need for abolition of the existing political, economic cultural systems producing and reproducing inequalities in all spheres of public and private life, but the impression one gets from the manifestos and day-to-day political practices of these parties is that the pervasive inequalities would automatically be done away with as soon as the socialists seizes state power. This is, again, an impractical ‘belief’, given the empirical experiences that the now-defunct socialist world had witnessed.For the democratic growth of society and the state, which was a promise of the country’s liberation war, there is no alternative to taking up the issue of gender equality as a regular agendum by the forces of democracy. The issue needs to be part of the day-to-day political struggle against the forces of pseudo-democracy, which have reduced the concept of democracy to a mere transfer of power through elections every five year. Democracy, after all, is a way of life, based on equality of citizens, which is to be manifested at all levels of public and private life of a populace.

Democracy and equalities

Democracy, theoretically, is all about equality — political, economic and cultural — and, that too, of all citizens irrespective of their ethnic, religious and gender identity. While we sporadically hear some generalised talks of inequalities between the rich and the poor, Bengalis and non-Bengalis, Muslims and Hindus, and even men and women, at some seminars and symposiums, the mainstream political parties of the ruling elite do not have any well-thought-out political, economic or cultural programme to ensure democratic equality among the citizens. What we find in their written charters is nothing more than a few lines of rhetorical utterances about the need of doing away with economic inequalities between the rich and the poor and, of course, a few vague words about the need for the ‘empowerment of women’. In practice, they, while in power, pursue policies that continue to breed inequalities of all shades.

War Crime

Prosecuting 1971 rapes and other sexual violence crimes

In 1971, between 200,000 and 400,000 women were raped by members of the Pakistan army and its local collaborators. Many Bengali women were taken away by them and made to become sex slaves of the officers and soldiers for the duration of the war. These women received cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment. Also, rape and sexual slavery committed by the Pakistan army and its local collaborators during 1971 led to an estimated 25,000 forced pregnancies among Bengali women. Sexual violence crimes should be treated as the most henious crimes by the civilised nations of the world. The perpetrators of such crimes should never remain unpunished. Hence, the sexual violence crimes committed by the Pakistan army and its local collaborators against the Bengali women during the 1971 War of Liberation must be prosecuted.

A Railway Porter

A railway porter is a familiar figure who usually carries the luggage of the passengers. He generally look very strong and self-confident. He usually wears a uniform, blue or red in color. He always bears a piece of cloth to support the load on his head. His activities are confined to the railway stations. He becomes active when a train arrives at the railway station. He hurries to the passengers who have luggage to carry away. He helps the passengers get on the trains or get down from it. There are a number of porters in a railway station and they are well organized too. It is their bad habit that they demand a high rate for their service. Nevertheless they are helpful to the passengers to a great extent.

May Day

May day is a glorious day in the history of the labourers worldwide. First day of the month of May is observed as the May Day. It is observed to show respects to demands of the laborers. The history behind it is very sorrowful. On May 3,1886, some workers gathered in demand of a minimum wage, safety laws, and eight hour work hours in a working day. Police fired in the crowd of strikers at the Mc Comick Harvest Machine Company, Chicago. Here at lest one people was killed and some others were seriously wounded. At the beginning of Industrial Revolution people had to work long hours both day and night. It was simply inhuman. It stopped when all labourers stood up. If the workers would not stand up and demand their rights, their future generation would fail to enjoy all the productive peivileges of the present day labourers. The day is most important for all the labourers both manual and mental worldwide. We need to observe it quite carefully and properly.

Study Tour

Study tour is a part and parcel of our educational life. Seeing of something with our own eyes fulfills our practical knowledge. Study tour gives us a better knowledge of different places of the world. It widens the horizon of our mind and broadens our outlook. During the last summer vacation I and some of my classmates planned to go to a study tour to Cox's Bazar. Some of the students, along with I, of our class went there. We went there with two of our class teachers. We saw natural sights, vast expanse of water of the Bay, waves of the Bay, many ships and steamers with goods. Cox's Bazar is famous for its natural beauties. We gathered practical knowledge observing those things of cox's Bazar. We passed there four days. We bathed in the water of the Bay, made a lot of fun and took snaps of us with different interesting things. We ate rice with special fish of the Bay. The free movement in that place gave us much pleasure. Actually the tour was very important for taking fresh air and enjoyment and gathering practical knowledge.

Bangladesh

Bangladesh is our motherland. The constitutional name is People Republic of Bangladesh. She got her independence in 1971 through a long bloody War of Independence. Bangladesh was a province of Pakistan. Then it was called as East-Pakistan. The people of Bangladesh were valiant and tried to free their motherland from the discriminatory treatment of the ruler of Pakistan. However Bangladesh got her independence and now she independent and sovereign country many other country. The land area of Bangladesh is 1,47,570 sq. kilometers. Though Bangladesh is small country, it is one of the most densely populated country in the world. According to the census of 2011 the total population is 160 million plus.

Women at work in Bangladesh

Half of the total population of our country are women. In the near past women were confined to household chores. But things are changing rapidly. Now women are coming out and working in various fields. Education is the key of every success. So to be a successful human, education is needed for women also. No doubt, still women are not getting enough opportunities to flourish their studies. Yet, the role of the women in their family is very important. They do all kinds of house-hold works. They bring up children and take care of them. Again the role of women in the development of the country can never be ignored. In the garments sector thousands of women are working which is bringing foreign currency to our country. They can direct legislative, judiciary, and governing concerns in a perfect way. They can be a doctor to treat the patients, an engineer to help the engineering concerns, an architect to help the people in architecture. In the eastern and western developed countries women are engaged in development activities. Women are leading and conducting our country being head of governing body. They play an important role in the political field of our country. Women's contribution to the development of the country should be evaluated properly. Because, they are trying their level best to develop our country shoulder to shoulder with men.

Women's contribution to the development of our country

Half of the total population of our country are women. In the near past women were confined to household chores. But things are changing rapidly. Now women are coming out and working in various fields. Education is the key of every success. So to be a successful human, education is needed for women also. No doubt, still women are not getting enough opportunities to flourish their studies. Yet, the role of the women in their family is very important. They do all kinds of house-hold works. They bring up children and take care of them. Again the role of women in the development of the country can never be ignored. In the garments sector thousands of women are working which is bringing foreign currency to our country. They can direct legislative, judiciary, and governing concerns in a perfect way. They can be a doctor to treat the patients, an engineer to help the engineering concerns, an architect to help the people in architecture. In the eastern and western developed countries women are engaged in development activities. Women are leading and conducting our country being head of governing body. They play an important role in the political field of our country. Women's contribution to the development of the country should be evaluated properly. Because, they are trying their level best to develop our country shoulder to shoulder with men.

The National Memorial

The national memorial is situated at Savar in Dhaka. It has great significance for the future generation. Our descendants will learn about the liberation war and its glorious achievement from it. It symbolizes the nation's respect for the martyrs of the War of Liberation. Arithmetically, It stands 150 feet tall. But every martyr it symbolizes stands much taller. It is an achievement which is immeasurable. There are seven towers in it. Its foundation was lain on the first anniversary of the Victory Day. It is built with concrete. It stands on a base which is 130 feet wide. The relics of the Liberation War will be kept in the museum built near the monument. The memorial reminds its visitors the great sacrifices of the freedom loving people of Bangladesh. It was built to warn all oppressors that the weapons of freedom need not be very big and that oppression will always be defeated. I feel proud standing before it. I show respect standing before it. About 5 months ago I visited it. I feel very happy reaching there. The largest complex of the national memorial have impressed me most. People show respect thereby giving garlands and bowing their heads.

Mother Teresa

Mother  Teresa was a great personality. She was a great saint, who was in charge of a missionary at Kolkata in India.  She was born in the then Yogoslavia in the early of the 20th century.  But she settled in India and also died there.  Her profession was serving humanity.  For serving wretched humanity she travelled different countries.  She did not sit idle even for a single day without serving humanity.  She was a model of great humanity.  With a wonderful feeling of humanity and a soft sense of goodness of God she served the sick people.  She never hated serving the sick people.  was is a great  source of inspiration to the people world wide.  Because of her wonderful feeling towards the wretched humanity she lives in the heart of the people.  She won the heart of the people since she served them like the lively goddess on earth.  Because of her great sacrifice she was given noble prize in peace.  All the money she got out of the prizes were spent for serving humanity.  This great lady passed away in the last year of the last century. It is an irreparable loss to the people of the world. We can’t forget her great contribution to the world. She is still alive in the depth of our heart.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Television


Television is an important means of entertainment. It has great educative value. We can see pictures and listen to the conversations among the world famous personalities. Television was first invented by John Baird, a famous scientist of Scotland. Mr. Baird demonstrated his invention at the Royal Institute of Great Britain in 1926. The mechanism of television  is very complex. A television camera has photo electric cells which receive pictures and transform them into electric dots and lines. Those dots and lines are then transmitted to the receiver set. The receiver set again transforms those dots, and lines into pictures. A general people can not even think how it works. Through television we can see drama, musical functions, and speeches which are held in distant places. At the same time we can hear the music and the talk of those speakers, musicians or of the actors in the drama. Television has great educative value. Thousands of students are being benefited through many programmes. Very often television exercises bad influence upon the youngsters. Rape, murder and violence are adopted by those young people who usually see these things in television. Young children may be affected by the abuse of it. TV programme should be made carefully.




Thursday, August 1, 2013

THE SEASON I LIKE MOST

There are six seasons in Bangladesh. I like all the seasons but I like spring most. Spring is my favourite season and perhaps it is favourite to all. Spring comes to us with many pleasant things and beautiful scenes and sounds. I like this season for many reasons. The summer is a season of terrible heat. Everyday feels uneasy. During the rainy season the roads become muddy. There is water everywhere. People can not move easily. They face many difficulties. During the early autumn and late autumn these disadvantages do not wholly disappear. Winter also brings troubles, People shiver in cold. There is dense for everywhere. The sun  is hardly seen. The poor suffer a lot. But spring has none of these disadvantages. It has many attractive scenes and pleasant things. So I like the season most.

Discipline

Discipline means obedience to a superior authority. Accepting the norms of the family, society, the commands of elders and obeying them is also discipline. Discipline means accepting punishments for violation. Discipline also means training of mind and character, developing self-control and the habit of obedience. Discipline could be divided into two broad categories, external and internal. External discipline is that which is imposed by outside authority. It is often linked with authority and force. Discipline in the army is one such. Soldiers do not have a say in it except implicit obedience. As Tennyson says “Theirs not to make reply. Theirs not to reason why, theirs nut to do and die”. A soldier in a war field cannot ask for reasons. He has to obey commands; otherwise, the war is lost. Nature and society are best disciplinarians. Violate their laws, and you are in for punishment. Put your finger in fire. It burns, no matter who you are. There we learn discipline by experience. That is why Gandhiji has rightly said that discipline is learn in adversity. It is therefore necessary that, if you wish to achieve anything enduring in life, you have to be first disciplined in life. Lack of discipline is like a ship without a rudder.

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