Friday, May 24, 2024

Section

বাংলা
Dhaka Tribune

A burning contradiction

How is it possible for two government institutions to have such vastly different definitions for something so simple?
Update : 31 Mar 2024, 09:23 AM

The recent spate of fires has, once again, highlighted just how poorly the overwhelming majority of buildings in the capital fare when it comes to abiding the building code.

The fundamental flaw behind fires, and indeed any of the numerous structural catastrophes we have witnessed in the past few years, has been a blatant disregard for compliance of basic safety rules and regulations.

What makes matters far worse, however, is the lack of any coherence or coordination between two of the most important institutions in charge of ensuring buildings are up to code: The Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha (Rajuk) and our Fire Service.

As revealed by a recent Dhaka Tribune story, our Fire Service and Rajuk have incredibly contradictory definitions for what constitutes a “high rise building” is at the centre of the gross violations of safety and building code that builders and building owners are able to get away with. According to the report, a facility is considered a high-rise when it houses more than six floors, according to the law of the Fire Service and Civil Defence; Rajuk, on the other hand, does not categorize buildings up to the 10th floor as being high-rises.

This discrepancy, according to the same report, is what has buildings getting approval despite egregious lackings in fire safety measures such as fire exits and lacking the adequate number of stairways in line with other factors. 

How is it possible for two government institutions to have such vastly different definitions for something so simple? How many lives could have been saved if only these two institutions had a more coherent set of guidelines for buildings to follow?

Yes, the onus absolutely lies on unscrupulous builders and building owners who game the system in order to cut corners and save money, but when the system is so broken it is up to the administration to take responsibility for all the damage it has caused.

We demand that our public institutions in charge of ensuring safe buildings have a more holistic idea of what constitutes that safety.

Top Brokers

About

Popular Links

x