Chittagong Deputy Commissioner Md Shamsul Arefin disclosed this information to the media after receiving the probe report on the incident at a briefing at the DC conference room on Monday.
“The explosion was an accident caused by the fire. The investigators found nothing suspicious. The accumulated gas inside the flat, emitted overnight from the burner caused the deadly blast,” said Shamsul.
The district administration formed an eight-member probe committee, headed by Additional Magistrate Mominur Rashid to investigate the explosion. Three members of a family sustained severe burn injuries. Later, two of the victims succumbed to their injuries at the burn unit of Chittagong Medical College Hospital.
Jashim Uddin, deputy assistant director of Chittagong Fire Service and Civil Defence, and a member of the probe committee, said the stove knob was turned on during the incident.
“The fire can be termed as a ‘backdraft’, resulting from the re-introduction of oxygen into the combustion in an oxygen-depleted environment. All the windows and doors of the residential building were closed and that is why the accumulated gas could not escape for a long time,” the fire service official added.
“We did not find any evidence in support of explosives. Members of the Bomb Disposal Unit and Criminal Investigation Directorate collected evidence from the site. If there was any explosive material, the blast would leave a trace. Moreover, no splinters were found in the bodies of the injured,” said Jahangir Alam, assistant commissioner of Chittagong Metropolitan Police.
The severity and extent of the damage following the deadly explosion gave rise to many speculations, particularly centering on subversive activities.