Burning homes cannot become the norm
Every citizen of this country is entitled to safety
The fact that there were three fires in February alone in the Korail slums in Dhaka tells us all we need to know: We need safer, more sustainable accommodations.
While it is a relief that no lives were lost and the fire was brought under control, the fact that no death was reported cannot be the only takeaway here; the loss of property is real and hurts these people living in these slums - people who are already surviving hand to mouth for the most part.
Over and over again, we are seeing the consequences of our unchecked urbanization, and the fires that raze these slums are one of the prime examples. To say that we must find a solution, and make that a priority, would be an understatement.
We are repeatedly told that Bangladesh will be transformed to not just a developed nation, but a poverty-free, equitable nation for all as well. However, the burning of homes of thousands of Bangladeshis over and over again certainly does not inspire confidence that we will succeed in reaching that goal.
But we can change that narrative; housing has indeed been on the radar of the authorities concerned for a while, and credit must be given to the steps that have already been taken to ensure that we get more Bangladeshis into safer and more sustainable homes.
Having said that, these efforts must continue and also increase. Every citizen of this country is entitled to safety, and for that to be a reality, the least they must have is a home that isn't essentially a tinderbox.