BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on Monday alleged that there have been repeated fire incidents at different slums in the capital due to the government’s indifference to take effective preventive measures.
In a statement, he also alleged that the ruling party men’s efforts to grab land, evict the slum dwellers and establish their control over the slum areas are also the major reasons behind the repeated fire incidents.
The BNP leader issued the statement voicing deep concerns over the fire incident at ‘Sat Tala Slum’ in the city’s Mohakhali area early Monday.
“More than 200 shanties of the poor and hard-working people were gutted in a fire at Sat Tala Slum in Mohakhali today (Monday). It’s a very heartbreaking incident. I extend my deepest sympathy to the victims of this horrific fire incident,” he said.
Fakhrul said though the fire incidents repeatedly took place in the capital’s different slums in the past, the government and the city corporations have remained reluctant about taking any effective step to prevent that.
He said the government formed probe bodies after the fire incidents, but the reports of these committees have so far not come to light. “Due to such indifference of the government, many lives are lost in incidents taking place one after another, and people are becoming pauper and helpless by losing their belongings.”
The BNP leader said the government’s failure and negligence to protect the shanties and property has put the lives of many slum dwellers at stake. “Many questions have also arisen in public mind about the government's failure.”
He said the victims of the slum fire are now left in a humanitarian crisis under the open sky with no food and shelter amid rain and coronavirus risk.
Fakhrul urged the government to rehabilitate the homeless people of the Sat Tala Slum and take steps to ensure necessary food, clothing, medical treatment and relief for the fire victims.
He also demanded the formation of an impartial investigation committee into the fire in the incident and compensation for the victims.