Ten die in explosion at Bangladeshi clothing factory supplying Aldi

Ten die in explosion at Bangladeshi clothing factory supplying Aldi

The mishap took place late on Monday at a plant owned by Multifabs Limited, a Bangladeshi company on the outskirts of the capital, Dhaka.

The firm supplies knitted apparel to clients in Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Russia, Spain, Netherlands and Britain, including to Littlewoods, one of Britain's oldest retail brands, according to its website.

Mesba Faruqui, the operations director of the factory, said the operators were doing maintenance duty as the factory was meant to open on Tuesday after the long Eid holidays. "One of the two boilers exploded within an hour of starting the operation in the evening", Multifabs Chairman and Managing Director Mohiuddin Faruqui said.

Thirty-five people are undergoing treatment at different health facilities in the Gazipur district, Das said, adding that many of those injured were in critical condition.

The business started operating in 1992 and generated $70 million in exports in 2016.

Bangladesh's garment-making industry, the biggest in the world after China's, employs four million people and generates 80 per cent of its export earnings.

After Rana Plaza, two worldwide coalitions were formed to help improve building and fire safety at thousands of garment factories across Bangladesh, but casualties in recent accidents are still on the higher side.

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At least 64 people are killed and about 100 injured when a garment factory building collapsed in Dhaka.

The Rana Plaza disaster sparked demands for greater safety and put the onus to act on foreign companies sourcing clothing from Bangladesh.

The committee is made up of officials from different forces like police, industrial police, fire service, Department of Inspection for Factories and Establishments, BGMEA and Gazipur City Corporation.

Sulav Chowdhury, chief executive of the Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association, of which Multifabs is a member, said the industry had gone through a "huge shift" since the Rana Plaza disaster.

The Bangladeshi government and global buyers have been trying to improve working conditions in the garment sector, which adds about $29 billion in terms of exports to the country's economy, according to the Bangladeshi statistics office.

"Within ten minutes after we returned to work, the boiler exploded".

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