Dhaka fire under control, Sri Lankan among the dead

Dhaka fire under control, Sri Lankan among the dead

Several of the roughly 140 employees of the private firm Quasem Group that had multiple offices in the building, escaped across a roof to an adjacent building, said Shamim Reza Khan, an assistant general manager at the firm.

The FR Tower building, situated in the Banani district of Dhaka, reportedly consists of offices and a restaurant.

People were seen scaling the side of the building using cables on the tower's exterior, while others clung on waiting to be rescued. There was no official word on how many people were trapped inside however.

"Seventeen firefighting units of the Dhaka Fire Service and Civil Defense are trying to douse the fire", a senior Fire Service official told the Dhaka Tribune.

Dozens of people are feared trapped inside the 19-storey office block in Banani.

Air force helicopters were seen rescuing people from the rooftop.

The fire broke out on the eighth floor of the 22-story building at about 1:00 p.m. and engulfed other floors immediately. Media reports said at least six people had been seen leaping from flaming windows.

Two more bodies were brought out from the building around 6:30 pm after the fire was put out.

The Dhaka north city mayor Atiqul Islam said that had the building its own fire fighting team, devastation could be have been minimised.

Firefighters have been at the scene dousing flames since 1pm local time (7am GMT) and the fire was still raging three hours later.

A fire broke out in an office building in Bangladesh's capital Thursday afternoon, trapping people inside, with reports saying some have fallen from the building in an attempt to escape the flames.

A military spokesman, Abdullah Ibne Zaid, said the body of a Sri Lankan man was brought to the army's Kurmitola Hospital and another 45 people were being treated there.

They were backed by navy and air force experts, duty officer Mohammad Russel from Dhaka's central fire service control room said.

He alleged that the fire fighters came 40 minutes after the fire had broken out and started operation with their fire engine which was not working on the ground. That blaze took more than 12 hours to control.

Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha chairman Abdur Rahman said that the city development authority formed a five-member committee to investigate how the owner extended the building to 22 storied despite having approval for 18 floors. Last month, a fire in the oldest part of Dhaka, a 400-year-old area cramped with apartments, shops and warehouses, left at least 67 people dead.

A June 2010 fire in the nearby neighbourhood of Nimtoli in which 123 people were killed.

Related Articles