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Dhaka Tribune

Mosque fire: HC order asking Titas to compensate victims, stayed

So far, 31 people have died from the fire suspected to have been triggered by a gas pipeline leak

Update : 13 Sep 2020, 08:48 PM

The Appellate Division has stayed the High Court order that directed Titas Gas Transmission and Distribution Company Ltd to pay compensation to victims of the recent Narayanganj mosque fire.

On Sunday, the Supreme Court’s chamber judge froze the order after the state-run gas company moved an appeal.

Justice Nuruzzaman forwarded the matter to the full appeals bench and fixed December 1 for the hearing, said Titas Gas’ counsel, Barrister Mejbahur Rahman.

On September 9, the High Court ordered the gas company to initially pay Tk5 lakh as compensation to each victim of the September 4 fire after hearing a petition moved by a Supreme Court lawyer, who also happens to be a resident of Narayanganj.

According to the order, the gas company would have had to pay the compensation within seven days to Narayanganj Deputy Commissioner (DC), who was supposed to distribute it among the victims later.

Also Read - ‘Titas was told countless times about the gas pipe, they didn't care’

Advocate Taimur Alam Khandaker, and the petitioner lawyer Advocate Mar-e-um Khondaker, stood for the writ.

The High Court also observed that all the parties — Titas Gas, Dhaka Power Distribution Company (DPDC), Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha (Rajuk), and Baitus Salah Jame Mosque committee – are jointly responsible for the incident. 

The court will give its final judgement once investigation reports of the incident are submitted, but it passed the initial compensation order on Wednesday. 

The blast — suspected to be triggered by a gas pipeline leak — took place at Baitus Salah Jame Mosque in Narayanganj’s Fatullah during Isha prayers on the night of September 4. The explosion has claimed 31 lives so far.

At least 40 were injured in the blast and 37 of them were rushed to the Sheikh Hasina National Institute of Burn and Plastic Surgery in Dhaka.

So far, just one of them has been discharged from the hospital.

Five injured people currently undergoing treatment in the ICU of the institute are still fighting for their lives.

Of the five, Sheikh Farid suffered 50% burn wounds, Abdul Aziz 47%, Kenan Hossain Bappi 30%, Amzad 25%, and Sifat 22%, according to hospital sources.

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