Fire Claims 45, Injures Dozens in Bangladesh

A tragic fire erupted in a multi-story building in Dhaka, Bangladesh, resulting in at least 45 fatalities, as confirmed by the nation’s health minister.

The incident unfolded in a restaurant around 10:00 PM local time, casting a shadow of grief over the capital.

Initial reports from Reuters indicate that emergency services managed to rescue 75 individuals from the inferno, with many requiring urgent medical attention.

Consequently, firefighting teams, comprising 13 units, battled the blaze for two hours before bringing it under control. Investigations are underway to determine the cause, with a gas leak or a malfunctioning stove at the biryani restaurant being considered as possible origins.

The situation at Dhaka Medical College Hospital is dire, with 22 people listed in critical condition. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has expressed her deep sorrow over the disaster, urging for prompt and comprehensive care for the survivors.

Survivors recount horrifying tales of escape, like Mohammad Altaf, who managed to survive by breaking a window and leaping to safety, while lamenting the loss of two colleagues who initially helped others to evacuate.

Firefighters employed cranes to rescue those trapped in the building, which also contained clothing and mobile phone shops, indicating a mix of commercial and potentially residential use.

The aftermath saw relatives congregating at the hospital to claim the bodies of their loved ones, many of whom succumbed to suffocation or injuries sustained from jumping from the building.

Safety concerns have been raised about the building’s structure, notably the presence of gas cylinders on each floor and the lack of adequate emergency exits. This incident has sparked a broader discussion on the need for stringent enforcement of safety regulations to prevent such disasters.

Critics, including Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party, have voiced concerns over governmental accountability and the recurring nature of such tragic incidents, calling for a renewed commitment to the rule of law and public safety.


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