Building owner still on the run
Two owners of a chemical warehouse have been arrested over the deadly fire that broke out in Old Dhaka’s Armanitola on Friday.
The Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) arrested Mostafizur Rahman in Bogura and Mohammad Mostafa in Dhaka. Both had been absconding, RAB Legal and Media Wing Director Cdr Khandaker Al Moin said during a press briefing on Monday.
“We have arrested them as they are accused in a case filed under Section 308 of the Penal Code for storing flammable items and chemicals. These two are the owners of the warehouse from which the fire broke out,” he said.
Mostak Ahmed, owner of Haji Musa Mansion, the building where the chemical warehouse was located, is still on the run. RAB is continuing its drives to arrest him, Cdr Khandaker added.
The case over Friday’s fire, which broke out on the ground floor of the six-storey Haji Musa Mansion, was filed with Bangshal police station on Friday night. The case was filed against nine named accused, including building owner Mostak, and 15-20 unnamed others, according to Bangshal police station Officer-in-Charge (OC) Shahin Fakir.
The fire claimed five lives and left 24 others injured, including three firemen. Of the 21 people rescued and taken to Sheikh Hasina National Institute of Burn and Plastic Surgery, only one has so far been discharged after treatment.
The court of Dhaka Metropolitan Magistrate Begum Mahmuda Akhter on Saturday accepted the case filed by Bangshal police station Sub-Inspector Mohammad Ali Sikder Musa and fixed June 10 for submission of the investigation report.
Old Dhaka remains a ticking time bomb during fires because of illegally set up chemical warehouses, unplanned building construction, narrow roads and high population density.
In February 2019, a devastating fire at Wahed Mansion in the Churihatta area of Chawkbazar claimed 71 lives.
In June 2010, a deadly fire in Nimtoli took 124 lives.