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Thursday, January 19, 2017 09:04:02 PM
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Year 2016 : Time of hopes and despairs

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Dr. Md. Shairul Mashreque :
The outgoing year like a couple of last previous years is significant and unforgettable. A host of seminal events occurred in 2016  in Bangladesh and elsewhere that could not be passed into oblivion.
Presidential election in USA at the fag end of 2016 with   unexpected victory of Donald Triumph deserves mention. We expected female candidate Hillary Clinton to become the first woman President of USA. But Truimp Trumphed  in electoral vote.  Hilary registered win in popular vote but it was of no use. The election of Donald Trump has thrilled many people across the West's oil and gas industry who say his promises to roll back regulations will free it from unfair and unnecessary obstacles imposed by President Obama. Western critics of Russia accused Putin at the time of rigging the election by participating in large-scale voter fraud. Russia was charged with hacking  in favour of Truimp.
Another significant event is Panic at Gulshan. On the night of 1 July 2016, at 21:20 local time, five militants took hostages and opened fire on the Holey Artisan Bakery in  Gulshan.  The incident was the worst terrorist attack in Bangladesh's history. American  was  among 20 dead in terrorist attack  at Gulshan, Dhaka. The panic took place during the holy month of fasting.
Another attack occurred a week ago in Bangladesh at the end of 2016. . The operation conducted by women with suicidal bomb was met with counter police operation. - A woman thought to have links with a militant group has blown herself up during a raid in Bangladesh. She has blown herself up during a police raid on a house in Bangladesh.
Another tragic event was the demise of Cuban icon Castro.  In 26 November 2016 - Fidel Castro, Cuba's longtime revolutionary leader, died at 90  in Havana .
Looking at Indian economic scenario India turned out to become fifth largest economy overtaking Britain despite its deplorable conditions of the poor, where Bangladesh was improving lessening its poverty. Poverty in India is on increase more acute than Bangladesh. Interesting was the episode around the announcement made by the Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi in an unscheduled live televised address at 20:15 Indian Standard Time (IST) on 8 November. In the announcement, Modi declared that use of all Rupee 500 and 1,000 banknotes would be invalid until further order.  Modi's strained relation with Pakistan became a threat to global peace somewhat signaling nuclear war. On 29 September 2016, a military confrontation between India and Pakistan began. India claimed that it had conducted "surgical strikes" against militant launch pads across the Line of Control in Pakistani-administered Azad Kashmir. India was to flush out the militants along border area trained by Pak. military. Fighting in  the line of fire  was really foreboding of a great warfare with nuclear warheads.
Another notable episode is Paris Climate Summit in 2016. The Paris Agreement is an agreement within the United Nations Framework Convention on  Climate Change (UNFCCC) dealing with greenhouse gases emissions mitigation, adaptation and finance starting in the year 2020. The language of the agreement was negotiated by representatives of 195 countries at the 21st Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC in Paris and adopted by consensus on 12 December 2015. It was opened for signature on 22 April 2016 (Earth Day) at a ceremony in New York.As of December 2016, 194 UNFCCC members have signed the treaty, 119 of which have ratified it. After several European Union states ratified the agreement in October 2016, there were enough countries that had ratified the agreement that produce enough of the world's greenhouse gases for the agreement to enter into force. The agreement went into effect on 4 November 2016. The head of the Paris Conference, France's foreign minister Laurent Fabius, said this "ambitious and balanced" plan is a "historic turning point" in the goal of reducing global warming. One year on, the ratification of the Paris Agreement was celebrated by the Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo by illuminating the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe, Paris' most iconic monuments, in green.
In the arena of Cricket the milestones are introduction of day night test  staged in Sharja and Brisbane and the advent of majic boy like Mustafizur Rahman and first ever test victory of Bangladesh against test heavy weight England. Indian Aswin  became the best all rounder in ICC rating.  

(The writer is Professor,   Public Administration, Chittagong University )

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