• Celebrating a Braveheart

    A tribute to artist and freedom fighter Ferdousi Priyabhashini on a day we celebrate women could not be more befitting except for the fact that it should have been a tribute to a living legend not a eulogy for a hero who is no more. She passed away on March 6. When one looks at the life of this incredibly brave and beautiful woman one cannot help but feel that we as a nation have failed miserably to pay our dues to this freedom fighter.

  • Asma Jahangir

    The tragedy of losing a champion

    The tragedy of Asma Jahangir's sudden passing away at only 66 years of age, on February 11, is that she has left the world at a time when it needed her most.

  • Ivy's Poison

    The pictures on the front page of practically every major newspaper on Wednesday, January 17, conjure an ugly image of Bangladesh's political scene.

  • Facebook for escapists or escapees?

    It makes one wonder why married couples must declare their unquestionable adoration for each other on Facebook. Do they not see each other every single day of their lives?

  • Waiting for a miracle

    Waiting for a miracle

    The best thing about the building I come to work to six days a week is that it has reasonably clean (as in dry), separate toilets for women in each floor. It is a luxury that few women in this city can claim. I say “luxury” for what is a basic necessity because in Dhaka city (forget the rest of Bangladesh) having access to a reasonably useable toilet for women is a rarity. Sometimes it is a miracle.

  • For the love of the camera!

    Cameras have always had a strange effect on people. While there is a group of people who are called camera shy, who will shun any attempts of anyone trying to photograph them, who will grimace uncomfortably when the camera...

  • Say no to the right to wrong passage

    I don't know about you but when I read about traffic law enforcers stopping VIP cars going on the wrong side of the road and giving them tickets, for some reason I feel like jumping with joy. Forgive me for being gleeful at another individual's inconvenience.

  • Can we make the world colour-blind?

    Yet there it is—an inescapable, undesirable truth. And it goes far beyond the silly jibes of how you didn't get your mother's buttery complexion or the delicate hints by the parlour assistant that a “fair polish” is in order to “brighten” your dark, dull skin.

  • Lessons from Aduri's ordeal

    Tuesday's verdict by a special court in Dhaka, which sentenced Nawrin Jahan Nodi to life imprisonment for torturing an 11-year-old domestic help, Aduri, and dumping her into a dustbin assuming she was dead, should give us immense satisfaction.

  • The spectre of Rip Van Winkle

    This is a city where even the most important people fall victim of the Rip Van Winkle syndrome. They lie in the blissful sleep of negligence and apathy while their city's vitality, strength and resilience are washed away in the dirty waters.

  • When in doubt bring Ershad out

    You have to hand it to the former general/president. Nobody can really match the age-defying, flamboyant showstopper like Jatiya Party Chairman HM Ershad.

  • The paradox of institutional silence

    The paradox of silence is that it only accentuates the sound of things you may not want to hear. The silence I am talking about here is the institutional refusal to acknowledge, let alone address an unsavoury truth.

  • Who cares what happened with Apu and Shakib?

    Just when you thought you knew what the most significant news of the day was – West Bengal Chief Minister's rejection of the Teesta...

  • No such place as home

    For the majority of communities in this country, the idea of a woman inheriting more than a man is ludicrous, even equally is rarely accepted. But there have been instances where through legal channels brothers and sisters have shared their parents' wealth equally without any kind of acrimony.

  • A special kind of stupid

    Is it just me or is everyone around me going a bit cuckoo?! And I'm not talking about the lawmaker who thought it was grand to walk

  • When children resort to crime

    It could be over who gets to play in the field that day or who should be occupying the alleys to intimidate passersby. It could be because the harassment of a girl was protested. Or because a 'proposal' was rejected. It could be just about anything that can trigger brutality in a youngster.

  • 'The upside of the downside'

    It was an expression of outrage against the apparent acceptability of anti-woman rhetoric, racial discrimination, religious intolerance and insularity, diseases that keep thriving across the globe.

  • The quirks and perks of getting old

    Aging and quirkiness are like Siamese twins and can seldom be separated. This is why as you grow older you will inadvertently acquire a good dose of crankiness and a bucketful of eccentricities that the young (and cruel) will snicker about behind your back.

  • Reality bites of 2016

    I think the biggest lesson we learnt in 2016 is that we have been living in a bubble of delusion - about the kind of world we live in.

  • The administration's parallel reality

    Idon't know what I would be going through if I had been a Hindu resident of Brahmanbaria's Nasirnagar, and now recently of Bochaganj, Dinajpur, where at least 20 Hindu houses have been torched, if my house or that of my Hindu relatives or neighbours had been attacked by a few hundred frenzied men who unleashed their hatred by vandalising, looting and setting everything on fire.

  • Child marriage is wrong, exceptions are unacceptable

    Perhaps we were a bit delusional in thinking that there was a consensus regarding the fact that child marriage, that is marriage of a girl under 18, would be considered a social evil that should be completely shunned in our country.

  • The Mother of Trees

    It is perhaps the greatest environmental love story of all. Saalumarada Thimmakka, a day labourer and Bekal Chikkayya, a cattle herder, both from Hulikal village in Bangalore district, defying all the taunts from society for being childless, decided to plant trees and treat them like their children.

  • An old disease we nurture so well

    It may be prohibited by law (Dowry prohibition Act, 1980) but demanding dowry for deigning to marry a girl from a less fortunate family is considered a normal entitlement of males in society.

  • Modern Pains

    While cracking my spine as casually as a game of 'bursting the bubble wrap', my physiotherapist tells me that the future looks really bright for members of his profession. Intrigued, I ask why.

  • Why we couldn't protect Khadija

    Remember Suraiya Akter Risha? The eighth grader of an English medium school in Dhaka, who was stabbed by her stalker, a man who

  • Sandwiched between militancy and consumerism

    Despite all the ramifications of progressiveness that civilisation has experimented with, the preoccupation with the female members of the population has never been on the wane.

  • Are friends really that important?

    In a larger context, friendships actually allow societies to function and this includes countries that may turn them into formal unions or agreements. Hence the disastrous effects when friendships sour – you get Brexit, you get hostile neighbours, ruthless aggressors and worst of all, you get wars.

  • A jarring anomaly of society

    It is easy to miss stories about child domestic workers being tortured and killed. Easy because stories of children being killed have become eerily regular.

  • Remembering Rubel

    The name suddenly made me stop reading the lead story of DS's May 18 issue. Shamim Reza Rubel. He was an IUB student

  • The way to show respect

    When all the paraphernalia linked with power and status fail to get lowly commoners to show respect – say they forget to salam or shower you with petals when you enter the vicinity of the primary school you are to visit – there is only one thing to do.