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Dhaka Tribune

Families left without support

Update : 09 Oct 2013, 08:29 PM

They sacrificed their lives to save dozens of colleagues from a devastating fire at their work place, but left behind families with no one to support them.

The seven workers who died at the devastating fire that broke out at the Aswad Composite Mills on Tuesday night, managed to save the lives of at least 170 fellow workers at the factory in Shreepur, Gazipur.

According to relatives, they were the only earning members of their families, and their sudden deaths have left elderly parents and younger siblings desperate, with little hope for the future.

Victim Mohammad Khalilur Rahman, 26, was a senior machine operator at factory. As the eldest son of the family, he was the sole provider for his elderly parents and schoolgoing younger brother, said his cousin, Ashraful, who came to Gazipur to take Khalilur’s body home to Rangpur.

Ashraful said his cousin was supposed to return home next Tuesday, with money and clothes for Eid.

Another victim, Bulbul Islam, 21, an operator at the knitting section, had also been the sole provider for his widowed mother and two younger sisters, said his cousin, Kamruzzaman.

Bulbul’s mother became senseless at her home in Dinajpur on hearing the news of his death, Kamruzzaman said.

“Now there is no one left behind to support the family or arrange the marriages of his sisters,” Kamruzzaman said in a sad voice.

Five other victims, who worked in the knitting section, were identified as Rasheduzzaman Mondol, 33, Naimur Rahman, 26,  Rubel Mia, 23, Minhazul Haque, 23, and Raju Mia.

Meanwhile, the managing director of the factory, Nafis Shikder, on Wednesday declared that each victim’s family would receive Tk500,000 as compensation and the company would stand beside them.

During a visit to a local health facility where the dead bodies were kept, Nafis said the victims were not only promising workers, but also brave as they risked their lives to save their   colleagues and factory property. He also offered jobs to unemployed but qualified family members of the victims.

After the fire incident, the mostly charred bodies of the victims were taken to the Upazila Health Complex at Sheerpur. The bodies were handed over to relatives for burial on Wednesday after verification by local law-enforcers and administrative officials.

“The bodies were handed over after proper identification by the relatives and verification from local officials,” Aziz Hayder Bhuyan, upazila nirbahi official of Sheerpur, told the Dhaka Tribune.

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