Cabinet shelves DST plan

The cabinet has cancelled its earlier decision to introduce Daylight Saving Time on a permanent basis in Bangladesh—clocks will not go forward on Mar 31.

bdnews24.com
Published : 22 March 2010, 03:14 AM
Updated : 22 March 2010, 03:14 AM
Dhaka, Mar 22 (bdnews24.com)—The cabinet has cancelled its earlier decision to introduce Daylight Saving Time on a permanent basis in Bangladesh—clocks will not go forward on Mar 31.
The government has taken the decision "in the public interest," Abul Kalam Azad, the prime minister's press secretary told a press briefing after the cabinet meeting on Monday.
Daylight Saving Time was introduced on a trial basis last year in a bid to conserve power. Clocks went forward on June 19 and were set back again on Dec 31.
The government earlier this year had decided to introduce DST on a permanent basis, by setting clocks one hour ahead on March 31 and back again on Oct 31.
"The government has taken the decision in the public interest, especially to ease the difficulties for school going children," Abul Kalam Azad, the prime minister's press secretary, told a press briefing after the cabinet meeting on Monday.
Many parents and guardians had complained last year that clocks going forward an hour meant that in some cases children had to wake before daylight to get ready for school shifts starting at 7am.
Daylight Saving Time was introduced on a trial basis last year in a bid to conserve power. Clocks went forward on June 19 and were set back again on Dec 31.
The government earlier this year had decided to introduce DST on a permanent basis, by setting clocks one hour ahead on March 31 and back again on Oct 31.
Power officials said DST reduced peak power demand by about 200 megawatts, equivalent to the output of a medium sized power plant.
Total power production falls short by about 1200 megawatts during peak demand in Bangladesh, causing frequent power black outs and grey outs. The country's 40 or so operational power plants generated 3945 megawatts against a peak demand of 5200 megawatts on Sunday.
Azad said the prime minister on Monday called on people to continue efforts to save power despite the decision to cancel DST.
The cabinet, during the meeting, blamed the past BNP-led alliance government for the current power crisis, he added. "They could not generate a single megawatt of power for which the government is facing trouble," Azad said.
ROME STATUTE RATIFIED
The cabinet also ratified the Rome Statute, he said. Bangladesh signed the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court on July 17, 1998, the first country to do so in South Asia.
"The ratification will prove that Bangladesh is determined to follow international standards to prosecute crimes against humanity," the press secretary said.
The meeting also approved the draft of Bangladesh Parjatan Board Act 2010.
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Toufique Imrose Khalidi
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher