• Dhaka Wed, 17 JULY 2024,
Genocide Day observed
How to Make Custard?
Custard is a delicious and versatile dessert that can be served warm or cold. It is made with milk, eggs, sugar, and sometimes cornstarch or flour. Custard may be flavoured with flavours other than vanilla or chocolate. It can also be served with fruit, cookies, or other toppings. Here is a simple recipe for making custard: Ingredients: 2 cups milk 4 large egg yolks 1/2 cup sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (Optional) 1 tablespoon cornstarch Instructions: 1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla extract. 2. In a saucepan, heat the milk over medium heat until it is just simmering. 3. Continue to whisk while gradually incorporating the hot milk into the egg mixture. 4. Return the custard mixture to the saucepan and simmer, stirring constantly, for about 5 minutes, or until the custard thickens and coats the back of a spoon. 5. If you are using cornstarch, whisk it into the custard mixture before adding it to the saucepan. 6. Remove the custard from the heat and let it cool slightly. 7. Pour the custard into serving dishes and chill in the refrigerator until cold. Tips: To prevent the custard from curdling, make sure the milk is not too hot when you add it to the egg mixture. If the custard is too thick, you can thin it by whisking in a little bit of milk. For up to three days, custard can be kept in the refrigerator. Variations: To make chocolate custard, add 1/4 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder to the custard mixture. To make fruit custard, stir in 1 cup of chopped fruit, such as berries, peaches, or mangoes, before chilling. To make a custard tart, pour the custard into a pastry crust and bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20-25 minutes, or until the custard is set. Enjoy!
Chandrayaan-3 completes 4th orbit-raising manoeuvre
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“No religion is under threat in India”: NSA Ajit Doval
Revival of tourism in Kashmir: Foreign visitors rekindle their love for the valley
After a prolonged hiatus, international travellers are once again flocking to the enchanting and picturesque destination of Kashmir. From January 1 to June 19 this year, an impressive surge of over 15,000 foreign tourists has reconnected with the Valley, and authorities expect this number to increase significantly by the end of the year. This resurgence in tourism is a promising sign for the region, as it indicates the restoration of confidence and interest among travellers in visiting this breathtaking part of the world. According to official statements from the tourism department, the number of foreign tourists exploring the Valley between January and June 19 stood at an impressive 15,161. This figure is a significant leap from the previous year's records, which saw only 4,028 foreign visitors during the same period. The sharp increase indicates a growing attraction towards Kashmir as a preferred destination among international travellers. Several factors have played a crucial role in rekindling the interest of foreign tourists in Kashmir. Firstly, the improved security situation and stability in the region have been instrumental in boosting confidence among travellers. The concerted efforts of the local administration and security forces to create a safe and welcoming environment have paid off, as visitors now feel more secure and comfortable exploring the Valley. The proactive promotion of tourism by the government and tourism department, both domestically and internationally, has played a vital role. Collaborative marketing campaigns, roadshows, and participation in global tourism events have helped in projecting Kashmir as a must-visit destination. The pristine natural beauty, diverse cultural heritage, and unique experiences offered by the Valley have also contributed to its allure. Kashmir's appeal lies in its awe-inspiring landscapes, including snow-capped mountains, verdant valleys, serene lakes, and meandering rivers. The majestic Dal Lake, located in Srinagar, offers tourists the opportunity to experience the iconic Shikara boat rides, stay in traditional houseboats, and enjoy the vibrant floating markets. The enchanting hill stations of Gulmarg, Pahalgam, and Sonamarg provide breathtaking views, adventure sports, and opportunities for trekking, skiing, and mountaineering. Furthermore, Kashmir is renowned for its rich cultural heritage. The region boasts historical monuments, including the magnificent Mughal Gardens, ancient temples, and Sufi shrines. The vibrant local markets offer a delightful shopping experience, with traditional handicrafts, Pashmina shawls, exquisite jewellery, and aromatic spices being popular souvenirs. The resurgence of tourism in Kashmir brings not only joy to the hearts of locals but also economic prosperity. The influx of foreign tourists stimulates the hospitality industry, creating employment opportunities and income generation. The rise in tourism also promotes small-scale businesses, such as handicrafts, local cuisine, and transportation services, contributing to the overall development of the region. Moreover, tourism plays a significant role in preserving Kashmir's rich cultural heritage. As visitors immerse themselves in the local traditions, arts, and crafts, there is a renewed appreciation for the region's cultural legacy. This appreciation encourages the preservation of ancestral skills and practices, benefiting local artisans and artisans' communities. "While the revival of tourism in Kashmir is an encouraging trend, it is essential to address the challenges that may arise. Ensuring sustainable tourism practices, preserving the natural environment, and maintaining the delicate ecological balance are crucial. Additionally, continuous efforts should be made to provide a safe and secure environment for travellers, dispel any misconceptions about the region, and improve infrastructure and connectivity," said Umer Reyaz, a local. "The tourism department, In collaboration with local stakeholders, should focus on diversifying tourism offerings, including adventure tourism, cultural festivals, and wellness retreats, to attract a broader range of travellers. Embracing digital marketing strategies, social media promotions, and leveraging technology can also help in expanding the reach and visibility of Kashmir as a desirable destination," said Rameez Ahmad, a young entrepreneur from Bandipora. The recent surge in foreign tourists visiting Kashmir between January and June 19 indicates a promising revival of tourism in the region. The improved security situation, proactive promotion, breathtaking natural beauty, and rich cultural heritage have played a pivotal role in reigniting the interest of travellers. This resurgence brings economic benefits to the local communities and also contributes to the preservation of Kashmir's unique culture and traditions.  
Protesters interrupt Ashes cricket Test match
Just Stop Oil protesters briefly interrupted the second Ashes Test at Lord's between England and Australia, before unceremoniously being removed from the field. Protesters from the Just Stop Oil group disrupted Wednesday's Test match between England and Australia at the Lord's Cricket Ground in London. Two environmental activists ran onto the grass during the first morning of the second Ashes Test — the prestigious series of games between the historic rivals. The protesters scattered orange powder on the ground, mimicking spectacles carried out by members of the group at other major sporting events. "We are aware of protesters on the Lord's Cricket Ground pitch today. Police have arrested three people and taken them into custody," the Metropolitan Police said on Twitter. What did the Just Stop Oil protesters do at Lords? The two men appeared after England's James Anderson had finished the first over to Australian batsman David Warner. They were quickly tackled by security staff as well as players. England wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow carried off one of the protesters. A third protester was apprehended before making it onto the grounds. The orange powder landed on the grass, but not on the pitch directly. Play resumed after around five minutes once ground staff had cleared up the powder. Just Stop Oil has carried out protest actions at the World Snooker Championships, the British Formula One Grand Prix, the Premiership rugby union final and at several Premier League soccer matches. Their members also made headlines by throwing soup on a painting by Vincent Van Gogh. The group, who were booed by spectators at Lords, demand that the UK government stop issuing new licenses for oil, gas and coal projects. "It's time for cricket lovers and all those who understand the severity of this situation, to get onto the streets and demand action from this illegitimate, criminal government," a spokesperson for the group said.
Pak: Jamaat-i-Islami to protest outside ECP’s Islamabad office against ‘fake’ Karachi mayor election
Naeemur Rehman, Jamaat-i-Islami (JI) chief announced on Monday that his party would protest the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) government’s alleged use of force to win the Karachi mayoral election on June 23 (Friday) in front of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) office in Islamabad, reported Dawn. He said, “It will be a massive protest and we will question the ECP about the polls it held in Karachi (….) the ECP will have to declare the election invalid and rectify all its mistakes,” as per a report published in a Pakistan-daily. After Murtaza Wahab won a close race for mayor of Karachi last week, the JI and PPP have been at odds. In contrast, the JI had the backing of 61 PTI members, bringing the predicted number of votes for Rehman to 192. The PPP had joined forces with the PML-N and JUI-F, increasing their combined strength to 173. Wahab received all 173 votes that were anticipated, while Rehman only received 160 because 30 union council members chose not to participate in the voting procedure. The provincial government, according to the JI, allegedly forced PTI members into rejecting the elections. On June 17, the party also observed “Black Day,” and protests were organised all throughout the nation. Rehman, while addressing a press conference in Karachi on Monday said that the party was mulling taking a convoy of protesters from Karachi to the federal capital on June 23. He asserted, “We can’t accept these fake and rigged elections,” adding that the PPP had “unlawfully held Karachi’s mandate to keep its donkey network active.” Rehman added that the ECP had entirely failed to conduct free and fair elections in Karachi, questioning how the body would be able to hold polls across the country. “This was just a trailer, the entire film is yet to be unveiled.” The JI Karachi chief also pledged that his party would take every legal and constitutional path to bring the truth before the public, Dawn reported. 
India strengthens soft power in Afghanistan
India is strengthening its soft power in Afghanistan by providing critical aid through Iran, thereby sidelining a once-essential Pakistan, reported Nikkei Asia. A spokesman of the United Nations World Food Programme recently informed that an Indian donation of 20,000 metric tonnes of wheat is scheduled to arrive in Afghanistan in the coming months. This would fulfil a commitment made by New Delhi in March to ship the wheat through Iran's Chabahar port. The goods will eventually cross the Iranian border into Afghanistan's Herat region. Hunger persists in Afghanistan, with the World Food Programme claiming that more than 19 million people are suffering from acute food insecurity, which occurs when a lack of adequate food puts lives or livelihoods in immediate danger, according to Nikkei Asia, a Japanese publication that provides Asian news and analysis to a global audience. A recent Taliban-imposed restriction on women UN personnel in Afghanistan sparked outrage in the international community and fuelled further concerns about the country's future, even evoking talk of a UN exit. However, a WFP spokesman stated that the organisation is committed to delivering aid in areas where hunger threatens the lives of millions. "The humanitarian needs across the country remain very high," the representative said, adding that "[India's] contribution will help us reach hungry families where needs are highest." The decision not only strengthens India's position as a crucial donor of essential aid to Afghanistan but also underscores New Delhi's efforts to craft positive relations, despite the fact that it does not formally recognise the Taliban administration that took power in August 2021. India reinstated its diplomatic presence in Kabul by deploying a "technical team" in mid-2022. According to experts, the region is simply too important to leave. Furthermore, the current food aid represents a geopolitically significant shift in the way India provides assistance, the report noted. In response to the Afghan crisis, India proposed transporting 50,000 tonnes of wheat through Pakistan. Pakistan granted consent in November 2021 after significant discussion and pressure from the Afghan Taliban. As a result, the first shipment of Indian wheat was delivered through Pakistan in February 2022. Nonetheless, despite India's appeal, Pakistan refused to extend the deadline, limiting the supplies to 40,000 tonnes. Using the port of Chabahar has significant advantages over transporting wheat through Pakistan, avoiding the nuclear-armed neighbours' difficult relationship and allowing India to support Afghans more efficiently. Ashok Sajjanhar, a former Indian ambassador to Kazakhstan, Sweden and Latvia said, "Use of Chahbahar negates the indispensability of Pakistan in terms of India reaching out to Afghanistan and Central Asia, especially since (Islamabad's) own relations have gone south with the Taliban and ours have gotten better." He added, "India has always had a historical and civilizational connect with the people (of Afghanistan). We want to have a technical presence and not a diplomatic one on Afghan soil. We want to ensure that the aid we are going to supply reaches the rightful beneficiaries and not used by the authorities to serve its own people." Islamabad's relations with the Afghan Taliban have deteriorated, owing in part to Kabul's incompetence or unwillingness to rein in Pakistani Taliban terrorists. And now, India is strengthening ties with a country that Islamabad has always believed to be inside its area of influence. However, a Pakistani analyst dismissed the trend, stating that India and Afghanistan are autonomous entities whose relations should not be viewed through the lens of Pakistan. "I think that India and Afghanistan are free countries that must pursue autonomous, independent relations with each other," said Mosharraf Zaidi, a senior fellow at the TABADLab think tank and former policy adviser to Pakistan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, adding, "In fact, the more regionally integrated countries there are amongst each other, the better it is for Pakistan." Afghanistan's internationally isolated officials have naturally welcomed India's outreach. Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid told Nikkei Asia, "India is an important country in the region, and Afghanistan values it. We want to have good, friendly, and strong people-to-people relationships with India. The fact that India has just announced a donation of 20,000 metric tonnes of wheat is a great help to the people of Afghanistan, and we are very thankful to the people and government of India for this support." There are other indicators of deepening ties, but New Delhi is keeping expectations low. After India promised the wheat, the Taliban's Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a memo in mid-March announcing a four-day training programme for ministry personnel through the Indian Embassy. Soon after, India clarified that the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) programme, which is overseen by the Indian External Affairs Ministry, is fully operational and does not represent a shift in New Delhi's stance towards Kabul, Nikkei Asia reported.