Dhaka, September 12 (NIA): The Bangladesh army, which is taking a leading part in clearing the wreckage of the burnt out packaging factory of Tampaco Foil Ltd; in Gazipur, says that it might take more than a month to finish the job.
Members of army’s 14 Independent Engineering Brigade, led by Lt Col Shofiul Alam, started working at the site Monday morning with heavy machinery. Brig. Gen. ASM Mahmud Hasan, commander of 14 Engineering Corps, said the amount of garbage at Tampaco was much more than that at Rana Plaza.
“It may take more than a month to clear the wreckage,” he told Bangladeshi reporters.
Mahmud said they would start full-fledged operations from Wednesday, a day after the Eid-ul-Azha.
A fire swept through the food and cigarette packaging factory on Saturday following a massive explosion. Some 100 workers were working at the factory at that time.
It took nearly 36 hours to extinguish the fire. The death toll now stands at 33 with the retrieval of four more bodies on Monday.
The industrial disaster was Bangladesh’s worst since the 2013 collapse of Rana Plaza that killed over 1,100 people.
Brig Gen Mahmud said the army did not have experience in working with chemicals like ethyl stored in drums at the collapsed factory building. He said they would leave the ethyl drums alone and remove other debris.
Factory owner, 7 others sued
Deceased factory worker Jewel’s father, Abdul Kader, filed a case against the Tampaco Foils Factory owner and seven others with the Tongi Police Station on Sunday.
Owner Mokbul Hossain, a former MP, was stated as the prime accused, Officer-in-Charge of Tongi Police Station Firoz Talukder told The Daily Star.
Around 5:30pm on Sunday, fire fighters and rescue workers pushed hard to douse the flames completely and looked for survivors under the debris of the four-storey building in the BSCIC industrial area.
On Saturday, 24 bodies were recovered and 50 suffered injuries after the fire broke out at the packaging factory around 6:00am, minutes before the workers were about to change shifts.