10,000 homeless after fire destroys slum in Bangladesh capital Dhaka

AFP, Dhaka — At least 10,000 people are homeless after a massive fire swept through a crowded slum in the Bangladesh capital and destroyed thousands of shanties, officials said Sunday.

The fire broke out at in Dhaka’s Mirpur neighbourhood late on Friday and razed around 2,000 mostly tin shacks, fire services official Ershad Hossain said.

“I could not salvage a single thing. I don’t know what will I do,” 58-year-old Abdul Hamid, who ran a tea stall inside the slum, said as he broke down in tears.

Authorities eventually got the blaze under control and no-one was killed, although several people had minor injuries, firefighters said.

Authorities eventually got the blaze under control and no-one was killed, although several people had minor injuries, firefighters said.

Experts say fires are frequent in Dhaka due to lax safety measures.

At least 100 people have been killed so far this year in building fires across the densely populated metropolitan city.

In 2012, a fire swept through a nine-storey garment factory near Dhaka killing 111 workers. An investigation found it was caused by sabotage and that managers at the plant had prevented victims from escaping.

A 2010 fire in Nimtoli, one of the most densely populated districts of the capital, killed 123 people.

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