Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) has cordoned off a suspected militant hideout in Narsingdi’s Gabtoli area.
However, those inside the building claimed that they were not militants when contacted by the Dhaka Tribune.
“We have surrounded an under-construction building from Saturday afternoon on suspicion that a few militants are holed up in the ground floor of the two-storey building,” RAB 11 Commanding Officer Lt Col Kamrul Hasan said.
Later, RAB-11 Assistant Director Senior Assistant Superintendent of Police Alek Uddin told the Dhaka Tribune: "Five to six militants may be inside the residence. We have asked them to surrender, but there has been no response from inside the building."
"We could not confirm the existence of any woman or child in the residence," he also said; adding that RAB and local police have cordoned off the residence and surrounded areas since 4pm.
The decision to start an operation inside the den will be taken soon, after RAB high-ups from Dhaka reach the spot.
Azar Bin Mahfuz, who claims to be the brother-in-law of one of those in the building, spoke to reporters after rushing to the scene upon hearing news of the raid.
He alleged that those inside were madrasa students, not militants, and provided the contact number of his brother-in-law Masudur Rahman.
When contacted, Masudur told the Dhaka Tribune that he was in the building with four others. They are: Salahuddin, Moshiur Rahman, Mojibur Rahman and Abu Zafar.
Masudur claimed that none of them were militants and that four of them had gone to the building to receive private tuition from Abu Zafar.
He added that the doors and windows of the building were unlocked, but law enforcement officials were not allowing them to leave. He also denied having been asked to surrender by the officials.
The house is owned by Mainuddin, a Bangladeshi expatriate in Libya. His family had lived there before the death of his wife a year ago.
The building has been empty since then.
“One Salauddin rented the ground floor flat by introducing himself as a madrasa student one month ago. Five more people were seen residing with him in the house,” said Nurul Islam, owner of a neighbouring shop.