Bangladesh Premier League: Nabi blitz gives Vikings simple 19-run win


Bangladesh Premier League: Nabi blitz gives Vikings simple 19-run win

Afghanistan all-rounder Mohammad Nabi was in devastating mood as his 37-ball 87 took Chittagong Vikings to a formidable 190-5 against Rajshahi Kings, laying the platform for a 19-run win.

He was well-supported by Anamul Haque, who scored a half-century.

In reply, Bangladesh pacer Taskin Ahmed claimed 5-31 to ensure Kings never really looked like chasing down the steep target.

Four-star Afridi shines in BPL for Rangpur Riders

Nabi also impressed with the ball, registering economical figures of 1-24 in his four overs, to claim the man of the match award.

Pakistani pacer Imran Khan Junior also impressed with 2-28 in his four overs.

Shahzad, Tanvir heroics in vain

Pakistani opener Ahmad Shahzad scored a solid half-century to take his Comilla Victorians side to 122-5 against Rangpur Riders, with West Indian middle-order batsman Marlon Samuels also notching up a half-century.

However, there was precious little support for the two as no other batsman even crossed five.

Junaid Khan dazzles in 2016 Bangladesh Premier League

Riders went with their familiar approach of using spinners to suffocate the batsmen and it worked, with former Pakistan skipper Shahid Afridi giving away just 18 runs in his four overs.

The relatively small score meant Riders were able to cruise through, despite Pakistan’s left-arm pacer Sohail Tanvir once again proving economical with the ball.

Published in The Express Tribune, November 19th, 2016.

Bangladesh buys two submarines from China

Bangladesh buys two submarines from China

Bangladesh took delivery on Monday of its first submarines, bought from China, as it seeks to boost its naval power in the Bay of Bengal.

Bangladesh paid a reported $203 million for the two submarines, a deal that reflects the country’s growing economic and defence ties with Beijing.

Armed forces spokeswoman Taposhi Rabeya said they would become part of the country’s naval fleet at the beginning of next year.

“This is the first ever addition of submarines in Bangladesh defence force,” she told AFP.

Bangladesh has been expanding its defence capabilities in recent years, building a new airbase close to neighbouring Myanmar, opening several new military cantonments across the country and adding new frigates to its naval fleet.

In 2013 the government of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina signed a billion-dollar deal with Russia to buy fighter training jets, helicopters and anti-tank missiles.

Hasina announced the plan to purchase two submarines the same year as part of her government’s move to build a modern navy to defend the resource-rich Bay of Bengal.

A UN tribunal has settled Bangladesh’s long-standing maritime border disputes with neighbours Myanmar and India, paving the way for Dhaka to invite bids from multinational firms to explore for oil in the Bay.

Bangladesh officials say that has ensured the country’s sovereignty over 111,631 square kilometres of sea, an area nearly equal to its landmass.

Xi Jinping last month became the first Chinese president in 30 years to visit Bangladesh, which has historically been more closely allied to rival regional power India.

Bangladesh PM promises new home for teenage sensation Mehedi Hasan

Bangladesh PM promises new home for teenage sensation Mehedi Hasan


Bangladesh’s teenage spin sensation Mehedi Hasan is to have a new home built for him on the orders of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina after his match-winning heroics in the historic Test victory over England.

The 19-year-old off-spinner took 12 wickets in the second Test as Bangladesh wrapped up a 108-run victory in Dhaka on Sunday — their first ever Test triumph for the cricketing minnows over England.

Hasan had been living with his parents in a basic home in a working-class district of Khulna but Hasina, who is a keen cricket fan, told local authorities to build something more befitting a national hero.

Nasser, Atherton hail Bangladesh’s Mehedi

“We are now trying to find a good spot to build Mehedi a new home following the prime minister’s directive,” said Khulna district administrator Nazmul Ahsan.

While there was no immediate word from Hasan himself, Bangladesh Cricket Board chief executive Nizamuddin Chowdhury said it should help drive Hasan — who is the son of a taxi-driver — to greater heights.

“It is a gift to the wonderboy from our premier for the brilliant performance in the Test series against England,” Chowdhury told AFP. “It will surely inspire him to work hard and do better in the future.”

Bangladesh debutant teenager puts England in a spin

Hasan, who only made his Test debut in the opening Test in Chittagong, was named both the man of the match after his performance in Dhaka and the man of the series.

The victory in Dhaka, which meant the series ended tied, sparked wild celebrations among Bangladesh’s tens of millions of cricket fans.

Bangladesh: Silencing the bloggers

Bangladesh: Silencing the bloggers

Beginning from January 2013, when Asif Mohiuddin, a blogger survived a stabbing attack near his office to the fatal attack on liberal blogger Nazimuddin Samad in April 2016, and later in July the broader Gulshan cafe attack — which saw the massacre of over 20 people — the spate of killings of secular bloggers and journalists by radical Islamists is charting a new course for Bangladesh. Not only has the government been forced to officially accept the presence of terrorist outfits in the country and take concrete action against them, people too have begun to realise the price of silence in the face of such a threat.

The killing of secular bloggers is a heinously orchestrated attempt to force Bangladesh to veer from liberalism, prosperity and, above all, sanity. No doubt, political and hence all other problems have been festering for a long time. But things came to a head when, in February 2013, in reaction to the right-wing violence against the ongoing war criminal trials, the secular Shahbag movement (Gonojagoron) emerged in Dhaka and spread swiftly cross Bangladesh.

Blogger Rajib Haidar, an active participant of the Shahbag movement, was hacked to death by a group of radical Muslims. The motive seemed to nip the Shahbag movement in the bud before it could grow into a political force big enough to counter right-wing pressure on the government. Rajib Haidar had been an atheist blogger for a limited audience for quite some time, but to justify his killing and silence the majority, Amar Desh a right-wing newspaper of Bangladesh published his blogs, exposing them to a wider audience.

The killing of secularists is an orchestrated attempt by religious radicals to force Bangladeshi society to abandon liberalism. The government may finally be waking up

His gruesome death became instrumental in widening the political and religious schism across Bangladesh. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s condolence to Rajib’s bereaved family was just the fuel needed by the right-wing opposition to tag her government as being anti-Islamic. It was no coincidence that right afterwards we saw the emergence of a group called Hifazat-i-Islam, with the explicit aim to counter the secular wave of Shahbag. Religious groups, and especially Hifazat-i-Islam, have since been trying to silence all other voices for being ‘anti’-Islam.

It is not difficult to understand how the situation spiralled. In the aftermath of Rajib’s killing, Hifazat-i-Islam was hailed as the saviour of religion, forcing many leading Shahbag supporters to distance themselves from the latter movement. Heightened religiosity also forced the Hasina government on the backfoot. Worst of all, words like ‘blogger’ and ‘secularism’ became synonymous with atheism, even if it was out of fear of right-wing retribution. As blogger and science writer Imteaz Ahmed said, “In a country where the government is not properly elected by its people, sometimes such governments try to use religious views and sentiments to secure power. During the killing of bloggers, not only was the government reluctant to take action, it even tried to take advantage of the situation. We have seen similar activities during military governments in our country. Such policies only aggravate the country’s social values and indices and further jeopardise the whole nation.”

The situation started to distort the socio-political fabric of Bangladesh with a slant towards retrograde change. To counter the demonstrations and counter-strikes of Hifazat-i-Islam in Dhaka, security forces were compelled to neutralise all sorts of gatherings in the capital, thus shutting down all space for liberal and cultural expression. Naturally religious groups came out the winner. Public propensity to favour even the most distorted versions of religion over logical thought ensured that while those of a secular bent were forced to run out of Dhaka, the right-wing groups continued to roam around freely.

As the ‘saviour’ of religion, Hifazat-i-Islam subsequently came up with a 13-point agenda, one of which was to demand the government to enforce the veil on women and ban them from work and study. Cornered, the Hasina government went for negotiations and compromised by gifting land and other concessions to Hifazat-i-Islam. This leniency encouraged the overnight growth of all kinds of right-wing militant outfits, and even some criminal groups disguised as the upholders of religion. Bloggers of all genres became a target; one hacking after the other forced most of them underground. In the absence of space for alternate thought, the narrative that ‘all bloggers are non-believers’ took root. Any writer, thinker or columnist who disagreed with this narrative was shoved under the ‘blogger’ umbrella, along with any freedom of speech.

Rajib’s killing was the lynchpin of forced change in Bangladesh; its effects felt all the way from politics to society. Several blogger killings later, the government introduced the controversial cyber law. With the facade to curb the right to criticise religion, this law also penalises government criticism, equally serving the interests of both the right-wingers and the ‘centrist’ party in power. Afraid to be left behind in the power game, major political parties jumped in the race to prove themselves worthy of upholding the mantle of religion. It’s not surprising then that Bangladesh society under duress started following suit. Attacks on minorities and intellectuals then began in Bangladesh. Although the ideological echo of this problem is perhaps louder than the actual depth of religious ferocity, most crimes committed in the name of religion remain unpunished for fear of a right-wing backlash.

After Rajib Haidar, blogger Avijit Roy was killed and his wife Bonya Ahmed seriously injured in February 2015 near the Dhaka Ekushe Book Fair premises. That attack near one of the most literary of Bangladesh events is an example of how far the militants are willing to go to destroy the very basis of Bengali culture and society. Avijit Roy was a scientist and a liberal thinker. His blog ‘Mukto-Mona’ (Free-thinker) carried a wide range of his work in science, theology and literature. The world condemned his killing but with Khaleda Zia’s opposition and right-wing parties waiting to pounce, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina once again failed to take a strong stance and no sympathy for Avijit was allocated. “With the government trying to please Hifazat-i-Islam because of its vote bank, we haven’t seen any justice for the killings of bloggers and writers,” says blogger and journalist Biplob Rehman.

Emboldened by this silence, militants killed blogger Oyasiqur Rahman Babu a month later. This time, however, a transgender passerby was able to catch one of the killers red-handed. Interrogation revealed that the killers were members of a home-grown militant group with links to Jamaat-i-Islami’s student wing. Although the braveness of a transgender delivered what law enforcers could not, it too was in vain. Society remained silent and the government took no action. So militants took these killings up a notch. They started attacking and killing bloggers in their own homes, leaving behind chopped-off heads as their signature. Ananta Bijoy Das on May 12, 2015, Niladri Chattopadhyay Niloy on August 7 the same year, and Nazimuddin Samad on April 6 the following year, were all killed mercilessly by religious militants.

We all know such things never stop by themselves. Just like the boy who cried wolf because he didn’t think he would be attacked, the good Muslims of Bangladesh believed those deaths would not enter their homes. But just like the wolf who did attack, the recent café massacre in Gulshan in Dhaka and the attack during Eid prayers in Sholakia only indicates that people of other faiths, publishers, teachers and Sufi singers — in fact anyone choosing to stand strong — became the new targets.

Planned or not, the fact is that the serial killing of bloggers has opened the passageway for terrorists, militants and extremists in Bangladesh to stake their de-facto claim over state and society. The apologists have actually ended up inviting the snake into their own garden. But this is not the end of the story. The Gulshan café attack has been an eye-opener for the government as well as the silent masses. Targeted anti-terror operations have begun across the country and while it can be argued that international pressure forced the government into waking up, the people of Bangladesh, always looking for an enemy to rally against, are also stepping out of their homes for peaceful demonstrations against religious extremism. Thousands of students, teachers and employees formed human chains against terrorism throughout the streets of Bangladesh on July 31, 2016, demanding a non-communal and fearless life. They have finally found the right target after three long years of bloodshed.

The writer is a journalist and an educator.

Source: Dawn News

Bangladesh to host first Afghan ODI series

Bangladesh to host first Afghan ODI series

DHAKA: Bangladesh will host their first one-day international series against Afghanistan in late September in preparation for the arrival of the England team, according to the president of their cricket board.

Nazmul Hassan said that the Afghan team, who are based in India, had agreed to play three ODIs at Dhaka’s Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium on September 25, 28 and 30.

“Our senior players recommended the series. So we invited Afghanistan to play against us,” Hassan told reporters late Sunday.

The matches will be the first ODIs hosted by Bangladesh since last year when they won series against Pakistan, India, South Africa and Zimbabwe.

Bangladesh and Afghanistan have never played a bilateral series in any format but they have played each other in tournaments, including last year’s World Cup when Bangladesh cruised to a 105-run victory in Canberra.

England are due to arrive in Bangladesh on September 30 for three ODIs and two Test matches despite concerns over security.

Tamim out for a month with fractured finger.Bangladesh opening batsman Tamim Iqbal fractured a finger during training on Saturday and will be out for up to a month.

The left-hander suffered the injury to the little finger of his left hand and will likely have to sit out the series against Afghanistan, the country’s cricket board said.

Bangladesh are hopeful the 27-year-old will be fit before England arrive to tour the country for a series comprising three ODIs and two tests, starting on October 7.

“Such injuries take about three to four weeks to heal,” Bangladesh team physio Bayzidul Islam said in a statement.

“We have time. He should be able to start batting in four weeks.”

Published in Dawn News

Nine militants killed in police raid in Bangladesh

Nine militants killed in police raid in Bangladesh

DHAKA: Bangladesh police on Tuesday killed nine militants who were believed to have been plotting an attack similar to the one on a cafe on July 1 in which 22 people were killed, the national police chief said.

Police said the militants were holed up in a building in Kalyanpur on the outskirts of the capital, Dhaka, and they opened fire on officers as they tried to enter.

The militants, who shouted Allahu Akbar, or “God is greatest” as they battled police, were believed to be members of the Jamaatul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB), a banned group that has pledged allegiance to the militant Islamic State (IS) group.

“They were wearing black outfits, turbans and had backpacks … similar to the outfits the attackers in the cafe had,” police chief Shahidul Hoque told reporters at the scene after the militants were killed.

One wounded militant was captured, he said.

“They were plotting a major attack in the capital like that in the restaurant,” he said.

IS claimed responsibility for the cafe attack but the government has dismissed suggestions that IS has a presence in Bangladesh.

Police said JMB was behind the attack by five young Bangladeshis on the upmarket cafe. Most of the 22 people killed there were foreigners and the five attackers were also killed.

Hoque said the militants killed on Tuesday were believed to have been a JMB cell.

“The militant who was detained claimed they were IS members but we think they’re JMB,” he said.

Mostly Muslim Bangladesh has faced a series of attacks on liberal bloggers, academics and members of religious minorities over the past year.

While authorities have blamed the violence on domestic militants, security experts say the scale and sophistication of the assault on the cafe suggested links to a trans-national network.

IS has warned that violence would continue until Islamic law was established worldwide, saying in a video the Dhaka cafe attack was just a glimpse of what was to come.

Source/Credit: Dawn

Bangladesh arrests top JMB militant blamed for Dhaka attack

DHAKA: Bangladesh’s elite security force said Thursday it had arrested a top regional head of the homegrown militant group blamed for an attack on a Dhaka cafe in which 20 hostages were murdered.

Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) officers stormed a flat in an apartment building in the industrial town of Tongi, just north of the capital Dhaka, and arrested four members of the Jamayetul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB).

“Among them was Mahmudul Hasan, the southern regional head of the JMB. He is a top militant trainer,” RAB spokesman Mufti Mahmud Khan told reporters.

Police recovered hand-made bombs and bomb-making materials from the house, indicating the militants “were planning to carry out an act of sabotage”, he said.

Bangladesh’s government has blamed JMB for the July 1 attack on an upscale cafe in Dhaka’s Gulshan neighbourhood in which 20 hostages, including 18 foreigners, were shot and slaughtered.

The militant Islamic State (IS) group claimed responsibility for the Gulshan attack, releasing photos of the carnage and of the five men who carried out the deadly assault.

Bangladeshi authorities rejected the claim, saying international militant networks have no presence in the country.

But national police chief Shahidul Hoque said recently that authorities were investigating whether the Gulshan attackers had any international connections.

RAB spokesman Khan said officers were probing whether Hasan and the three other detained JMB operatives, including a medical student, had played a role in the Gulshan attack.

“They will be questioned,” he said.

Hasan-trained militants were responsible for the murder of a police constable and deadly bomb attack at the nation’s most respected Shia shrine in Dhaka late last year, he added.

Bangladesh has been reeling from a deadly wave of attacks in the last three years.

The government and police say homegrown militants are responsible for the deaths of some 80 secular activists, foreigners and religious minorities since 2013.

Both IS and a branch of Al Qaeda have claimed responsibility for many of the attacks.

Critics say Hasina’s administration is in denial about the nature of the threat posed by militancy and accuse her of trying to exploit the attacks to demonise her domestic political opponents.

Last month, authorities launched a crackdown on local militants, arresting more than 11,000 people, but critics allege the arrests were arbitrary or designed to silence opposition.

Source/Credit: Dawn

Bangladesh bans Zakir Naik’s Peace TV, tracks students after attacks

Bangladesh bans Zakir Naik’s Peace TV, tracks students after attacks

DHAKA: Bangladesh government has ordered Islamic television station Peace TV to stop broadcasting and has told schools to report any missing students.

The station is run by Indian doctor-turned-preacher Zakir Naik, the founder and president of Mumbai-based Islamic Research Foundation, and its programmes are aired from Dubai.

A Bangladesh cabinet committee decided to ban Peace TV from the country, information minister Hasanul Haq Inu told journalists Sunday.

The measures come after several suspected extremists were reported to be fans of the television channel, while others were found to be from elite universities but had been missing for months.

Related: Naik rubbishes reports of inspiring Dhaka attacker

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina earlier in the day called on every school, college and university to “create a list of absent students and publish it”.

Bangladesh has been reeling from dozens of attacks, mainly targeting secular activists or religious minorities.

“We will be rigorous,” the premier said. “We must uproot militancy and terrorism from Bangladesh.” Three of the alleged jihadists who participated in an attack on a Dhaka cafe last week, in which 20 hostages were murdered, attended top schools and universities in the Bangladeshi capital.

The revelation that the attackers were educated, well-off members of society has sparked fears that extremism has spread far beyond disenfranchised youngsters being radicalised in madrasas.

Related: Dhaka cafe attack: The rich Bangladeshi kids who grew up to be radicals

School authorities would now have to provide information on any students who have an unexplained absence of 10 days or more, education minister Nurul Islam Nahid said.

Another student of a well-regarded university participated in a deadly attack in northern Bangladesh on Thursday that killed at least three people at a huge prayer gathering marking the start of Eid.

Police said both attacks were carried out by a banned local militant group, despite vocal claims from the Islamic State group that they were responsible for the siege at the Dhaka cafe.

Authorities, meanwhile, have launched a publicity blitz, urging parents to closely monitor their children.

Television channels have broadcast photos of missing students and advertisements to deter extremism. US Assistant Secretary of State Nisha Biswal flew to Dhaka Sunday to discuss the security situation with Bangladesh foreign minister Mahmood Ali.

She offered US expertise in building Bangladesh’s counterterrorism capabilities, the American embassy in Dhaka said in a statement.

“We will continue our assistance in combatting the global threat of terrorism that our countries both confront,” she said.

Source (Dawn News)

Japan’s Ahmadiyya Muslims condemn Bangladesh terrorist attack

Japan’s Ahmadiyya Muslims condemn Bangladesh terrorist attack


Muslims living in Japan condemned the July 1 terrorist attack in the Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka as they prayed for the victims at mosques across Japan.

Anees Ahmad Nadeem, 38, who serves as a chief missionary at a mosque of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community Japan in Tsushima, Aichi Prefecture, also condemned the terrorist group, saying, “Those who commit atrocious acts during Ramadan, when Muslims pray, give and do good deeds, are far removed from Islam.”

He added, “The recent attack might cause misunderstanding about Islam among those who don’t know about the religion. I’ll work on reaching out to people to explain that those extremists have no relation with us Muslims.”

iRabwah| News Watch |
Source/Credit: Mainichi Japan

Pakistan thrashed Bangladesh

Ahead of the match against arch-rivals India, Pakistan stood up for the big occasion and defeated Bangladesh convincingly by 55 runs.Bangladesh did not resist against Pakistan all round performance.

After winning the toss Afridi decided to bat on Kolkata flat wicket and rest was just incredible.A big worry for Pakistan was their “openers but they stood firm on the big occasion and Pakistan was all over Bangladesh in first 6 over despite losing Sharjeel early Pakistan did not panic and Hafeez-Shahzad made 95 runs partnership after well made 52 Shahzad got out and it’s time for BOOM BOOM to rise, coming up the order Afridi smashed Bangladeshi bowlers all over the park and made 19 ball 49.Pakistan ended with 201 on the board.

Bangladesh start was not that they would want.Amir struck in his very first over with the wicket of Sarkar.Tamim and Shabbir showed some character but it was Afridi once again but with the ball, this time, he struck in his very first over.Pakistan bowlers were chipping with wickets in regular intervals and they did not allow Bangladesh to Dictate what so ever.Shakib al Hasan made his 50 but it came too late and Bangladesh ended with 146/6 in 20 overs.
Shahid Afridi was man of the match for his al round performance.

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