Vital answers about teen depression and suicide

The transition from childhood to adulthood is often challenging and tumultuous, and it is during this period that some teenagers and young adults first experience depression and suicidal thoughts. Sadly, depression is a much more widespread problem than most people think.

Not every young adult will suffer from depression or contemplating suicide, of course, but it’s important for parents to pay attention to their child’s behaviour as he or she gets older and to allow for open and honest communication. Parents can be better prepared to support a child who may be depressed or suicidal by educating themselves about these mental health issues.

Here are just a few of the questions that parents of young adults often have about depression and suicide, accompanied by answers from the mental health treatment centre, Yellowbrick.

Question: How do I know if my child is depressed?

Answer: It’s hard to say if a young adult is depressed or simply “going through a moody phase”.  There are no reliable indicators of an impending suicide attempt, but there are some common signs that could mean someone is experiencing depression. These might include a loss of interest in activities that your child once enjoyed, isolation from friends and family, changes in sleeping patterns (either lack of sleep or excessive sleep), changes in appetite or eating patterns, low energy levels, or sudden mood swings. Some young adults may also attempt to use drugs and alcohol to cope with depression. Substance abuse is not necessarily an indicator of suicidal thoughts, but it does increase the risk of a depressed individual attempting suicide.

Question: What might my child be going through after a suicide attempt?

Answer: It is not uncommon for young adults to experience feelings of shame and guilt after a failed suicide attempt. These feelings may cause them to withdraw from their loved ones further, increasing their actual or perceived social isolation.

Let them know that they can talk to you without fear of being judged.

Unfortunately, young adults who have attempted suicide once have a higher risk for another attempt, as the first attempt may have a gateway effect on the risk-reward center of the brain.

Question: How can I best support my child after a suicide attempt?

Answer: Because a young adult who has attempted suicide may be experiencing shame, one of the most valuable things you can do as a parent is to demonstrate your unconditional acceptance of your child. Offer to support your child in whatever way he or she needs at this time, and talk to your child about seeing a therapist or counsellor. Empathize with your child even if they are experiencing frustration and anger.  Let them know that they can talk to you without fear of being judged.

Debating for development: UNFPA Bangladesh Youth Dialogue

From November 12-14, 2019, the Government of Kenya, the Government of Denmark, and UNFPA are convening the Nairobi Summit, a high-level conference to advance the implementation of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) Programme of Action. The conference will offer an inclusive platform, bringing together governments, UN agencies, civil society, private sector organisations, women’s groups and youth networks to discuss and agree on actions to accelerate the implementation of the ICPD Programme of Action.

On September 6, 2019, UNFPA Bangladesh in collaboration with Bangladesh Debating Council (BDC) and Independent University, Bangladesh Debating club (IUBDC) launched a two-day debate tournament at the premises of Independent University, Bangladesh (IUB).

The tournament was organised with an objective to engage the youth, where the participants from universities – both public and private – can engage in an extensive discussion on how the realisation of the ICPD Agenda is intrinsic to sustainable economic growth for Bangladesh.

Their voices echoed through the debates on a range of topics that are close to UNFPA’s agenda. The ideas and recommendations of the participants will be presented to the stakeholders of national and international development to the Summit.

The debate tournament addressed real-world issues and brought out the voice of the youth on problems like disseminating messages on specific ICPD themes: sexual reproductive health and rights, maternal health, prevent violence against women and child marriage. To empower and involve them to disseminate these issue-based messages to their peers and to bring the attention of policymakers about the needs of youth-based SRHR services: prevention of child marriage, maternal mortality and violence against women. To build awareness among adolescents and youth about the opportunities and challenges associated with them.

To mark the Summit, 16 teams from reputed public and private universities from Dhaka, Rajshahi, Khulna, Sylhet and Chattogram were invited to participate in this competition, along with 22 most reputed judges in the debate circuit. The teams had four preliminary rounds of debate that were carried out on September 6. All the teams faced off against each other where the top four teams at the end of the preliminary rounds qualified for the finals held on September 7, 2019.

The championship went to Independent University, Bangladesh Debate Club (IUBDC) with the runners-up award going to IBA, University of Dhaka.

The debates were followed by a youth-centric plenary session opened by Dr Asa Torkelsson, Representative of UNFPA whose opening remarks echoed the vision of the UNFPA.

“UNFPA has been working with and for young people since our inception. Our partnerships with young people are, and must always be, based on their active and meaningful participation. In order to achieve the ICPD Agenda from 25 years ago, we need to take account of your experiences, concerns and stories to shape an inclusive future for you, who will also help us achieve the SDGs.”

She said

The speech was followed by a presentation on the topic by UNFPA Deputy Representative, Eiko Narita. Following that Sakib Bin Rashid, Instructor at 10 Minute School, Ashreen Mridha, Bangladesh Women’s National Basketball Team Player, and Umama Zillur, Founder of Kotha, led an interactive session covering youth leadership, women empowerment and sexual violence.

“On behalf of the entire English debating community of Bangladesh I am honoured that the UNFPA entrusted us to help crowdsource important ideas to be taken into consideration at Nairobi, this validates that the time the youth spend behind researching and generating discourse on these crucial ideas do indeed matter and has encouraged us all to keep the discourse going so that our ideas and voices can play a role in the ever changing global landscape.”

Said Fardeen Ameen, the Chair of Bangladesh Debating Council

‘Morris Garages’ launches MG ZS in Bangladesh

The Iconic British Automotive brand Morris Garages started its operations in Bangladesh with the launching of MG ZS. Mr. Robert Chatterton Dickson, His Excellency, The British High Commissioner to Bangladesh was present as the chief guest. Beside that, Mr. Romo Rouf Chowdhury, Group Managing Director, RANCON; Mr. Shawn Hakim, Director, Rancon British Motors Ltd. and other officials were present during the launching ceremony.

Morris Garages, popularly known as MG has a legacy of more than 100 years and has a very rich heritage which is connected to the British family, prestigious races, big celebrities and many more. The company inherits British genes creating a contemporary yet unique personality and style. The brand carries the essence of British DNA and expresses pure fun, confidence, and passion for life. Bangladesh is one of the fastest-growing economies; and has picked up the market for branded cars that expresses the personality of not only the riders, but also the owners themselves. To cater to this growing need, RANCON British Motors has brought ‘Morris Garages’ to Bangladesh. The journey of MG in Bangladesh to be spearheaded by MG ZS followed by some exciting models like MG3 (Best Value Hatchback) & HS (Technologically Advanced New Crossover SUV) & ZS EV ( the electric car to revolutionize the automotive industry of Bangladesh).

The New 5 seater crossover SUV MG ZS comes with premium features for a price of 26.5 lac BDT. With smart design, advanced technology and ‘family-ready’ built, the is gorgeous in any roads even in crowded cities. The MG ZS is packed with user-friendly, intelligent technology including LED daytime running lights, Cruise Control, and Bluetooth, an 8” color touch screen, Satellite Navigation, and Reversing camera and sensors. MG ZS is also available with a choice of 1.5 and 1.00-litre Turbo engine.

At the launching event of this iconic British Automotive brand, He the British High Commissioner to Bangladesh, Mr. Robert Chatterton Dickson says, “It is fantastic to have this new car revive the MG spirit and the best of the British motoring. MG represents British creativity and British innovation. I am looking forward to seeing this new MG on the open roads of Bangladesh, where the car will be able to demonstrate what it is really made of.”

“Automobile market in Bangladesh has immense potential. With the launch of MG, we will deliver the esteemed customer with right vehicle ensuring the  MG global standard after-sales experience” says Mr. Romo Rouf Chowdhury, Group Managing Director, RANCON.

“MG aims to set a strong foothold in the automobile market of the country by delivering our unique & next level advanced vehicles which have the utility matched with the persona of the rider” says Mr. Shawn Hakim, Director, Rancon British Motors Ltd.

The New MG ZS will be available in MG’s Flagship Showroom from 6 September 2019 at 215, Bir Uttam Mir Shawkat Sarak, Dhaka.

Best home remedies and tricks to fight off the mosquitoes once and for all

The recent dengue epidemic has caused not only the city but the entire country in a chaotic situation. However as the days pass by, we have to make sure our surroundings are safe and clean. With the help safer steps and tricks, we can protect ourselves from dengue and other flu-like diseases.

Separate your indoor and outdoor plants

One of the common mistakes we often do while decorating our house with plants is we misinterpret the types of indoor and outdoor plants. Plants such as spider plant, rubber fig, devils ivy are indoor plants while verbena, coleus, sweet potato vine are outdoor plants. It is important to water and take care of both plants and clean the surrounding areas properly. Basil, lemon balm, catnip, citrosum, peppermint, rosemary, lavender, and sage are mosquito repelling plants.

DIY your own essential oil spray

Spraying coconut oil on your skin is a natural way if you want to avoid using chemical mosquito repellent creams. With the help of adding rosemary, lavender or tea tree oil can help you reduce stress add moisture to your skin as well.

Burn some incense

Burning incense around your balcony can stop mosquitoes more entering you house. While buying, do remember that some incense can smell more pungent than others. So try to find some which are more soothing and infused with essential oils.

Set out scented candles

Scented candles will not only help you release stress but it also acts as a mosquito repellent. Scented candles are easy to make at home given you have the right ingredients. However, if you want to buy candles infused with essential oils, Newton’s Archive can be your choice.

Try to keep your home clean and organised

A home with clean rooms will help the insects and mosquitoes from hiding out and building nests from time to time. Bathrooms and kitchens should be emphasized more because they are used frequently and known to be insect-prone areas. Try to keep the bathroom floors dry, the kitchen closets and sink less clotted.

If you catch experience fever for more than two days, it is essential to get a blood test or see a doctor as soon as possible.

Read more: Preventing dengue: Steps that you must take

Things to keep in mind before getting your next suit

A good suit is an essential piece of clothing that every man need to have in their collection. Whether it’s for work, a wedding or any other formal event, having the right suit is indispensable in making the right impression. But picking out or tailoring ones next suit can be a daunting task for anyone. The fabric, size, style, colour, tailoring and budget all play their part in making the right suit. And for anyone who’s relatively inexperienced or getting their first suit on their own, it can be quite a headache. And the last thing any man wants is to not look good in their new suit.  

So here are a few things men should keep in mind before getting their next suit.

Having a clear idea of the desired suit

Buying a new suit doesn’t start in the store, it starts in one’s head. Deciding on a two-piece or a three-piece suit, the colour, material, style or even buying it readymade or buying the cloth and tailoring it, is something one should have an idea off beforehand. Each option has its own merits and it’s on the buyer to decide which route they are going to take. So a clear vision is the first step in getting there. 

Correctly matching the trousers with the coat

One of the biggest rookie mistakes is buying a black coat to match with a black pair of trousers.  A suit is a matching coat and trousers made from the same type of fabric and colour. Merely matching two different coat and trousers, no matter how similar they are, is not going to work as well as one would think it would. 

Sticking to the basics

When it comes to choosing the colour of suits, one can never go wrong with the classics. Sticking to the timeless black, grey, brown and navy blue color for suits is never a bad idea.  And pairing them with the right shirt and tie is a sure-fire way to get the best out of the suit. Checkered and patterned suits are blowing up right now on Instagram and Facebook and that opens up the door to new possibilities. We do recommend losing the pinstripes as it does seem a bit dated.

 Getting the right size

Unlike most other clothing suits don’t generally come in small, medium or large, rather they are fitted to the buyer’s measurements. So getting the correct measurement is crucial for anyone looking for a new suit, especially for the shoulders, torso and height. One of the most common missteps people make when getting a new suit is buying one that’s too big.

Pro tip: The suit should hug the wearer’s frame as closely as possible without it being tight.   

Detailing of the lapel, buttons and hemming the trousers   

Getting the right lapel style and the number of buttons are some of the finer detail but they are just as important. Lapel types are generally two; the notch style which is more casual and versatile and the more formal peak style. As for buttons, the buyer can go for two buttons to three buttons on the torso depending on their choice. Another detail to notice is whether the coat sleeves or trouser length is correct and hemming them if they are longer. Also when it comes to trousers, opting for flat front pants instead of the pleated pant are commendable. 

A good tailor can make all the difference

It’s always wise to have a trusty tailor on hand for any altering or adjustment that may be required for a suit. And a good tailor can help you get the most out of a suit even if it’s a bit off or if it gets damaged. Most suits are made to be alterable and even a lower-priced suit, in the hands of a skilful tailor can make it look and feel much better.

Getting a suit is a rite of passage for many men and hopefully, the pointers above will help in getting the perfect suit next time around.  

Arundhati Roy should have acted more responsibly. But, so should have we

Cover photo: Manish Swarup/AP Photo

If you happen to follow news outlets on social media, chances are you have already read the headlines about Arundhati Roy’s controversial comments about the Indian and Pakistani armies. Arundhati was heard saying in a 2-minute clip snipped from a lecture she delivered in 2011 that unlike the Indian army “the Pakistani military was never used against its own people”.

Naturally, there was a massive outrage from people in Bangladesh, India and Pakistan, followed by a backlash to the outrage. As the controversy unfolds in real-time, it’s worth examining just what happened in the span of the last few days that put Arundhati Roy, a well respected social activist, in hot water with the press and the public.

The controversial speech

Arundhati Roy probably should have acted more responsibly. But so should have we

The 2-minute clip where she apparently made the statement was widely circulated on social media this week. She was heard claiming that since India’s birth, the country had been waging war on its own people and that Pakistan had never deployed its army against its people the way India had.

The repercussions were almost immediate. People wasted no time in pointing out the Pakistani army’s role in massacring over 3 million people in the then East Pakistan in 1971 and the sustained poverty and the plunder of the resource-rich Balochistan province.

She was branded a liar, hypocrite and pseudo-intellectual.

Some said her selective blindness to the bloody genocide through which Bangladesh emerged was appalling and that she was desperately in need of a history lesson. Many in the press tore into her supposed anti-Indian sentiments.

The issue lies with her ill-conceived idea to contrast the severity of the force used by the Indian and Pakistani armies on the people of their own country. In trying to illustrate the severity of the Indian state’s crimes against its own people, she unintentionally reduced the struggles of Bangladeshis who fought hard to obtain their freedom as well denigrated the continued oppression of the Baloch people as they are deprived the riches of their own land.

Read more: Kashmir, a paradise lost?

Unintended though it may have been, to many people who still grieve over the indelible trauma of the past (and for the Baloch, the present), she seemed like an apologist for the Pakistani army.

Roy’s humble apology

Arundhati Roy probably should have acted more responsibly. But so should have we

On Wednesday, Arundhati Roy said people unintentionally “say something thoughtless or stupid” at some point in their lives, adding that what she devoted to words in her writing was far more significant than what she “might say extempore in the course of a freewheeling talk”.

The author said further that her opinion on what Islamabad was doing in Balochistan and the “genocide that the Pakistan Army committed in Bangladesh has never been ambiguous” and were reflected in her writings. To support her claim, she referenced two examples of her literary works, one of them being the novel ‘The Ministry of Utmost Happiness’ published in 2017. In it, one of the main characters, an Indian Intelligence Officer, Biplab Dasgupta aka Garson Hobart, who has served in Kashmir, says:

“It is true we did—we do— some terrible things in Kashmir, but… I mean what the Pakistan army did in East Pakistan—now that was a clear case of genocide. Open and shut.

But are we asking the right questions?

Arundhati Roy probably should have acted more responsibly. But so should have we

At the risk of sounding like the devil’s advocate, I would wager that Arundhati Roy never explicitly intended to malign Bangladeshis or the Baloch. Her comments lacked nuance and were disappointing given the standard to which we hold the wordsmith, but with that said and done, I do question whether they deserved such intense scrutiny at the cost of omitting what the rest of her 90-minute lecture was about from the discussion.

Read more: What is happening in Hong Kong? Answers you need to know

The now infamous 2-minute clip of hers that went viral was extracted from a 90-minute lecture from 2011. Arundhati, who was reading out from her essay ‘Democracy’s Failing Light’ at a conference on Democracy and Dissent in China and India at the University of Westminster in the UK, talked about the way the Indian state became a colonizer immediately shaking off the shackles of colonialism itself. She named place after place that the Indian state has waged war on within its boundaries since its inception, from Kashmir and Telangana to Manipur and Mizoram to Goa, embarking on a campaign of suppression to consolidate its rule over the lands.

Anyone who watches the full video will understand that she is trying to make a point here about the bias of the international community in giving Pakistan its fair share of negative coverage for the brutality of its militarism, while simultaneously shying away from depicting India as anything but a bastion of democracy when many of its own people have been reduced to second class citizens.

In this context, her contention that India has ‘perpetually been at war’ with its own people does seem to make sense.

Furthermore, this 2-minute snippet miraculously resurfaced a few days after Arundhati Roy penned a searing opinion piece in the New York Times against PM Narendra Modi’s ambitions in Kashmir and India at large.

Arundhati minced no words saying, “Given my views on what is happening in Kashmir now, it is not surprising that Hindu Nationalists are rushing to generate outrage over this exciting new/old canard they have dug up about my supposed denial of the genocide in Bangladesh and the deeds of the Pakistan Army in Pakistan.”

The Yellow Press

With distrust in the media growing by the day, one must be ever vigilant of the content one comes across online. The yellow press relies on clickbaity headlines which draw us in to confer upon us details of the juiciest sort. The resulting outrage encourages us to share more and more, thus motivating these outlets to concoct headlines that are even more removed from reality.

Even reputable news outlets have their slip-ups, quoting people out of context and sometimes downright misquoting them. Only by admitting when one is mistaken and taking actual steps to correct said mistakes can these outlets regain the trust of their readers.

In this day and age, we must be conscious of both how we consume information and what information we put back out into the world. Let’s not let our outrage get the best of us.

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Meet Rabbi Apa, the only woman car mechanic in Dhaka

Within the past few years, women have participated in job sectors more than ever. However, ‘Mechanic Rabbi Apa’ is an exception to it all. Breaking fences in the field of mechanic and automobile workshops, Rabeya Sultana is the only female mechanic working for CARE Bangladesh.

Started from the bottom but she’s here

Rabeya Sultana Rabbi could never attend her S.S.C examination. Growing up with extreme poverty, Rabeya Sultana learnt to take care of herself from a very young age. Her father could barely afford for his eight-member family.

The young drop out student is now earning approximately 550 dollars per month and she can comfortably afford for her husband, her young son and her parents as well. Her husband was very supportive throughout her journey and helped her pursue her career by co-parenting.

Source: Arab News

Rabbi Apa’s journey

Rabbi Apa initially started training as a driver with other female members, but she was not confident enough to drive around highways. She then took the decision to take up her career as a motor mechanic.

In an interview with Arab News, she mentions how girls in Bangladesh hardly come to a profession which is heavily dominated by men in general. However, she has always been as a kind, friendly and hardworking employee. Selim Sheikh, manager for transport at CARE Bangladesh mentions how proud he is of her. She took in the knowledge of a motor mechanic in a short period of time. He also mentions how she is always enthusiastic to learn new techniques.

Rabeya dreams of opening her own garage in her hometown and give chances to others to pursue their career with motor mechanics. She wants to help her son achieve her dreams, and help him succeed in life.

May we have more Rabbi Apas help the society construct itself into a positive space for all women.

Like our content? Follow us on our Facebook page for regular updates. We want to hear from you. Take a moment to write to us with your stories, contributions and suggestion. Contact us for advertising and partnership opportunities at [email protected] Thank you!

What is happening in Hong Kong? Answers you need to know

It’s been almost eleven weeks since protest erupted in the streets of Chinese controlled Hong Kong. The protest that started over an extradition bill soon turned into a protest demanding the resignation of Hong Kong’s top executive, Carrie Lam, among other demands. As you read this article, thousands of people are taking the streets in protest against their leader, a debated extradition bill and against ongoing police brutality on peaceful protesters.

To understand what’s happening in Hong Kong, we must go back to its founding roots as a special administrative region.

What’s the deal with China and Hong Kong?

What is happening in Hong Kong? Answers you need to know

Hong Kong became a British colony in 1842 after China handed over its ownership to Britain after the end of the first opium war. After almost a century and half of the British rule, Britain handed Hong Kong over to China in 1997 and Hong Kong would become China’s special administrative territory under the “One country two systems” framework.  

Why is Hong Kong Special?

What is happening in Hong Kong? Answers you need to know

One of the pros of 150 years of British rule is the Sino-British Joint Declaration. This treaty signed in 1985 allowed Hong Kong to retain its freedom of speech when its ownership was transferred back to China, something which Chinese nationals of the mainland don’t have the luxury of enjoying. The outcome? Thanks to this catch, residents of Hong Kong can exercise their democratic right of protestation and free speech without brutal government intervention.

How did the protest start?

What is happening in Hong Kong? Answers you need to know

It all started with a murder. In February of 2018, a Hong Kong-based couple went to Taiwan on a weeklong vacation. A week later, the boyfriend, Chang, returned to Hong Kong and confessed to murdering his girlfriend. The Hong Kong government couldn’t prosecute him because the murder happened in Taiwan. And they couldn’t extradite him to Taiwan because Hong Kong does not have an extradition policy with Taiwan, a part of Chinese territory. That’s when Hong Kong lawmakers proposed an extradition bill that would allow the extradition of arrested individuals to Taiwan and other parts of Mainland China.

Hong Kong residents do not trust the Chinese legal system.

This proposal sparked a protest among the civilians against the bill. That is because Hong Kong residents do not trust the Chinese legal system. For the lack of democratic procedure, the Chinese legal system allows the government to prosecute a convict without trial and government fuelled abductions are not uncommon.

Is this the first protest?

What is happening in Hong Kong? Answers you need to know
The 2003 protests

It’s not. There have been major demonstrations in Hong Kong since 2003. In 2003, Hong Kongers took the street and protested against a bill that would allow punishment for those who spoke up against China.

In 2014, the people of Hong Kong Protested against China’s increasing influence over Hong Kong’s election. In 2016, the Chinese government even suppressed a small scale pro-independence movement.

But what sets the 2019 protests apart is the sheer size and demographics of the movement. The scale of the movement is unlike any of the past ones and although the forerunners are the youth, Hong Kong’s older generation and professionals like lawyers, doctors and politicians are also taking the street.

“I have friends… They don’t want their children to grow up in a just another Chinese city with no future for the next generation.”

60-year-old Lau, who holds a foreign passport.

Why is it so difficult for Hong Kong to be pro-democratic?

What is happening in Hong Kong? Answers you need to know

Hong Kong has a peculiar government structure. The top executive, an equivalent to our prime minister, is not elected by the people rather by a small committee and finally approved by China. The parliament, known as LegCo, is essentially divided into two segments, pro-democracy and pro-Chinese. And people get to vote for these seats.

But not all of them. Right of voting for about half of the seats are reserved for big corporations and industries. And the corporations, wanting to keep a good relationship with Beijing, never vote pro-democracy. Meaning, in every election since 1998, the majority people of Hong Kong voted for the pro-democracy legislature and yet the cabinet has stayed pro Chinese.

Where is all these heading to?

Remember when Hong Kong became the special administrative region in 1997? The special status came with an expiration date. Hong Kong will be fully integrated with Mainland China in 2047. That was the deal signed between Britain and China during handover. It would mean every right and freedom Hong Kongers enjoy as a separate region from China would be abolished and Chinese law would be applicable everywhere.

The problem is, China is not waiting for 2047.

Increasing influence and authority over Hong Kong has been the core of the disappointment for the residents for years. And the frustration is culminating in the latest protests.

The protestors are heading to train stations and airports to convey their messages to visitors and citizens from Mainland China. The protestors want increased democratic scopes and at the time of writing this article, updates of Police brutality and protests turning violent have been coming in.


Read more: Everything you need to know about the Amazon forest fire

Everything you need to know about the Amazon forest fire

The largest rainforest in the world, Amazon, is on fire, it has been for the past three and a half weeks. It only started to make news after it caused a blackout in the city of Sao Paulo in the middle of the afternoon. Here’s what has been happening so far:

Why are rainforests called rainforests?

Everything you need to know about the Amazon forest fires

The answer is in the name itself. It rains a lot; even more than 80 inches a year. To make a better understanding of the measurement- the highest rainfall in a year recorded in Bangladesh is 78.74 inches and it happened once.

The trees in a rainforest are so plump and full of water, that even during the dry seasons they never completely dry out, not even the dead leaves. The air is intently humid, the forest produces so much vapour that it causes its own rain. Most of the time, the rain goes on throughout the year and in those forests where the rain is seasonal, the gap between seasons is not very long too.

The Amazon forest

Everything you need to know about the Amazon forest fires

The Amazon has all these qualities. As an added bonus, the Amazon Basin, the largest natural basin consisting of 5 rivers, flows throughout the forest and works as the draining system for the entire forest.

In conclusion, it has all the necessary mechanism at place to prevent a large scale fire. Even during the dry spells, the wildfire does not have the capacity to burn more than some twigs and dried leaves.

How did the fire start? Was it deliberate?

Everything you need to know about the Amazon forest fires

While the increasing amount of drought can be a factor in rainforest fires, Brazil’s INPE (National Institute for Space Research) researchers have said there is nothing abnormal about the climate or rainfall amounts in the Amazon this year.

“The dry season creates the favourable conditions for the use and spread of fire, but starting a fire is the work of humans, either deliberately or by accident”

INPE research Alberto Setzer told Reuters.
Everything you need to know about the Amazon forest fires

Agribusiness is Brazil’s main source of income and the Amazon has been a cash cow for quite some time now. It’s only made worse by Brazil’s far-right president Bolsonaro who is an active supporter of deforestation for farming and agribusiness.

He promised his voters lands and access, he promised he would open up the Amazon for mining and farming, he promised not another centimetre of indigenous land would be protected under his leadership.

Everything you need to know about the Amazon forest fires

The largest chunk of indigenous tribes of Brazil lives in the Amazon- which makes the Amazon the indigenous land Bolsonaro is not keen on protecting.

”It’s a combination of natural phenomena with locals feeling comfortable enough to do it because the government has not made any effort to prevent it”

Brazilian journalist Boccanera says in an interview with BBC.

The guardians of the forest

Everything you need to know about the Amazon forest fires

Almost all of the 400 Amazonian tribes take the protection of the forest very seriously. The Guajajara tribe has formed an army of locals who are called “The Guardian of the Forest”- and they are patrolling the rivers and the borders 24/7 to make sure no illegal loggers or farmers can get in, and in doing so, they’ve paid a heavy price. In the past 45 years, 1400 members of the Guajajara tribe alone have been killed or assassinated. That did not stop them. But now with the government backing up the ranchers, loggers and the farmers, the effectiveness of them is in question.

Can we fight the fire? Is Amazon ruined forever?

Everything you need to know about the Amazon forest fires

Bolsonaro, amid national and international pressure, has deployed the army and other national resources at last to fight the fire. French President Emmanuel Macron has announced that the G7 will release funds for fire fighting planes. Israel has offered to help the Brazilian government to help stop the fire. Actor Leonardo DiCaprio also pledged $5M for the forest.

Burnt lungs can not sustain life and the Amazon has been the lungs of the Earth since time immemorial.

It has been producing almost 10% of the world’s oxygen and right now it’s producing smokes that are visible from the space.

Luckily, there’s still time to save the forest. Experts say that despite deliberate deforestation and natural forest fires, 80% of Amazon is still intact. And if allowed to regenerate, Amazon will heal itself in about 20-40 years.

Abandoned WWII airbase to turn into Bangladesh’s first Aeronautical and Aviation University

With help from voice-voters in Parliament, a bill was proposed on February 19th titled, ‘Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Aviation and Aerospace University Bill, 2019’. The bill passed successfully on February 25th. So, the first Aeronautical and Aviation University is now located at an airport in Lalmonirhart that has been abandoned since World War II! A fitting homage!

There will be an aircraft manufacturing factory. According to the Minister of Social Welfare, Nuruzzaman Ahmed, the Government may also establish an aircraft and maintenance repair factory. Traders in Lalomonirhat believe that reusing the abandoned airport will contribute to the academic and economic development of the country.

Source: Daily Star

The university will have both undergraduate and postgraduate levels for their students. He further noted, “Initially, the university plans to have seven faculties, four departments, four institutes.”

Furthermore, the Vice-Chancellor of the University will be a member of the Air Force. As per constitutional law, Bangladesh Air Force Academy, Flying Instructor School, Flight Safety Institute Command and Staff Training Institute, Aeronautical Institute and Officers Training Institute will all be affiliated with the university.