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How to Engineer Elections: A Quick Guide
By Sikder Haseeb Khan   

Image "It is great that Bangladesh's emergency government has emphasized its commitment to hold elections by the end of 2008. But if you think the elections are going to be free and fair, think again. A fully free and fair election will almost certainly result in an outcome that the current regime has reason to distrust. So the engineering of elections has already begun, and it will win the approval of international observers who won't understand the subtleties."

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Scrabulous, Scrabble, and Economic Development in South Asia
By Andrew Mack   

Image "Scrabulous, the Facebook phenomenon, was created by two Calcutta brothers. It uses an idea stolen from Scrabble and it has a large fan base. But has it created much economic value? Long before the Internet came, the original boardgame spread around the globe through proper licensing -- with people employed, taxes paid, and money made for fifty years. That's real economic value, and it comes from respect for intellectual property."

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A Challenge for Bangladeshi Medical Expatriates
By Mahfuz R. Chowdhury   

Image "In Bangladesh's lopsided healthcare market, imaginative ventures can make a big difference. Bangladeshi expatriate medical professionals can spearhead such a venture, with many socio-economic benefits. They would set up an institution in Bangladesh, and sign up on a database to donate at least two weeks of their services in a given year. Those who might not give their time in a particular year can donate a comparable amount of money."

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Maoists Lead Nepalís Transition to Democracy
By Anuj Mishra   

Image "In a marked contrast to his pre-election diatribe against other political parties, monarchy and the 'imperialist forces of India and America', Prachanda gave a very reserved and conciliatory speech in his election victory rally, emphatically pleading everybody, especially the international community, to not doubt his party’s commitment to multi-party democracy. This evolution of Maoists into a more or less liberal democratic party with an anomalistic name now appears ever clearer."

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Islamist Militancy in Bangladesh: Whatís to be Done?
By Ali Riaz   

Image "Developments over the past year demonstrate that militant Islamists have regrouped and seem to be steadily gaining strength. The government has always been one step behind in dealing with them. To my knowledge no investigations, either public or administrative, has been conducted to identify the individuals concerned and the reasons behind the leniency displayed toward militants. Patrons of the militants - individuals and organizations, domestic and foreign – have escaped justice altogether."

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