Monday, June 06, 2022
ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Monday expressed grief over the unfortunate fire incident and the numerous casualties it caused in Bangladesh.
A massive blaze at a container depot in southeast Bangladesh's seaport killed at least 49 people and injured more than 200. The fire broke out at the shipping container facility on Saturday night at Sitakunda, 40 km (25 miles) from the port city of Chittagong, triggering a huge blast and multiple container explosions.
Taking to Twitter, PM Shehbaz Sharif extended his sympathies and condolences to Bangladesh and the families of the deceased and injured.
"Sad to hear about the loss of precious lives in a fire incident in Bangladesh. My heartfelt condolences & most sincere sympathies are with the government and people of Bangladesh," the premier wrote.
The chemical-filled containers were still exploding on Sunday as firefighters attempted to douse the fire and officials said the army had joined the mission. The latest incident highlights the country's poor industrial safety track record.
Bangladesh has prospered over recent decades to become the world's second-biggest exporter of garments, but the infrastructure and institutional focus for industrial safety is still nascent, the International Labour Organisation said earlier this year.
Lax regulations and poor enforcement of rules have been blamed for several large fires that have led to hundreds of deaths in recent years.
In 2020, three people were killed after an oil tank exploded at a container depot in Chittagong's Patenga area, while in July last year, 54 died when an inferno ripped through a food processing factory outside the capital Dhaka.
At least 70 died in a fire that engulfed several buildings in a centuries-old neighbourhood of Dhaka in 2019.
Additional input from Reuters