Sep 29, 2011

Don’t dismiss the Wall Street occupation

  - Anthony DeRosa



A local Update > Link

Posted on Thursday, September 29, 2011

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Sep 20, 2011

On and off I read newspapers. Blah blah blah...., I tend to find my looney head oppose the habit after some time.

But what of the times, when something you know happened doesn't reach the news? What exactly is happening there? Who decides people should know about it, or not know about it?

Human rights, was that part of achieving MDGs? I hear we have jumped leaps and bounds in getting to our MDGs - statistics are being built right now to make sure we do. But anway, yes, who decides? I know rock music, especially those who growl and screech are not very mainstream - meaning not liked by a majority. So, minorities of youth, are the ones listening there, and when DJuice a brand thing of Grameen Phone, arranged a series of contests to find rock bands and award them a recording contract, it provided a much needed platform for the musicians living underground. The winner of the last contest, was a band called Powersurge, where Nahiyan was a guitar player. They didn't sing songs I usually listen to, but I could appreciate the energy and the power of their genre and their performance. So, anyway, one fine day Nahiyan gets arrested for stealing gold from a neighbor. Now I've seen news of young guys getting picked up and tortured before, and I've read news of stolen gold also. But in this case, neither seemed to make a stir! Two of the english papers put something out, other than that, zilch.

While trying to see whats there online throught Google, I find other instances where the news seems to have been selectively spread.

Labor rights activist Moshrefa Mishu

If our news dealers don't realize the power they hold, in keeping this country honest,  then there is not much left to write here. Its all quite useless.

Posted on Tuesday, September 20, 2011

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Sep 6, 2011

Been thinking about writing down my thoughts on the hullaballoo that is going on over increasing road safety. Before I could do so, Mr./Dr. Mohammad Ali Akbar Mallik, who is an engineer, already put his in Prothom Alo which I readily agree with.

BRTA's corruption is of course the first area to discuss. I have been to their Ikuria campus and the mirpur campus, and its easy for any simple man to get lost there. Its not that the place is big, but its crowded, with "Dalals" - the unofficial middlemen. The counters are either not labeled, or they are empty. The only way to determine what a counter is meant for unless there is a line in front of it, since then someone might entertain a question or two from you. It is indeed not a friendly place, and no civility is there. In terms of the writer's urge to modernize BRTA in the form of making a bigger campus, I hardly think that should be necessary. Considering how Dhaka has spread over and is jammed all the time, I think their operations should be more decentralized. The written tests, verbal tests etc, all tests short of the driving test, doesn't require a large area, and those could be arranged according to where people reside.

The idea of showing a video explaining road etiquette, how road accidents occur, and what the effects are of road accidents to the victims is a very good idea. That is just in line with how I was thinking about it. I drive everyday along the airport road, along Biswa road, and I see that most drivers are in fact, professional drivers. Regardless of whether there is a boss in the backseat, they are driving like absolute lunatics. I have usually seen car owners drive their cars cautiously, my father, my uncles, my wife, myself, or my friends, except maybe my younger brother and other youngsters who are mostly thrill seekers, and not really driving for practical reasons*.  Our professional drivers, they either have very little regard for the vehicles they drive, or just no regard for people. They wil cut into your lane very abruptly creating a risky situation, or come dangerously close to your car, to make you feel threatened and stop. Most of the time, a owner in the backseat, doesn't even care, as long as they can get to their destination fast. Others, like my father and eldest uncle, can go through 3/4 drivers in 3/4 months. My father currently doesn't have a driver. Meanwhile, the bigger the vehicle that a professional driver is manning, the bigger the risks he brings to everyone else. Buses have a habit of stopping in the middle of the road to take on customers. While the police can be seen stopping my car or other private vehicles often, they are very kind to these buses. Buses can be seen competing with other buses, to the point they drag along each others bodies. I have seen such a display on many occassions in the presence of the police. There is no reason to allow those drivers to sit behind a steering while for the rest of his life! These are clearly perverted individuals.

Whereas the author mentioned a video, I was thinking licenses would be conditional to a more elaborate training BRTA would conduct, including road safety issues, and visits to a hospital treating those who had lost a limb or suffered in any other way from an accident. Also, owners of vehicles should feel more responsible about how their hired drivers are conducting themselves. You can be the safest driver in town, but due to the professionals all around you, you are in now way out of danger. Talk to your drivers, and let them know what is right and what is wrong. Be human, for everyone's sake.

Related:  সড়ক শৃঙ্খলা: বিআরটিএ সংস্কারে কিছু সুপারিশ

* So, there is a good reason to restrict licenses to younger people. As far as I've heard, in USA licenses are given in stages. A 15 year old can only drive when in presence of a father or mother who can also drive, and then they graduate to being able to drive any family member, but not friends, and then slowly graduate to being able to just drive.

Posted on Tuesday, September 06, 2011

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