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Death of 2 Workers, 24 Feb 2007
Investigation main page

Death of Allaudin and Nuruddin on 24 February 2007 when they were crushed after a ditch collapsed and they were buried under the earth

The investigation took place in September, seven months after the incident.

At Vadail market, the investigators met a person who worked in the market. He said that on the day of the incident Alauddin and Nuruddin were digging a pit for establishing a toilet tank and four other labourers were lifting out the earth from the pit. Around 2pm in the afternoon, after lunch, the two workers went down into the pit again. After unloading 4 or 5 baskets of earth, a big heap of earth on the east side of the pit collapsed and fell inside it. Alauddin and Nuruddin inside the pit got trapped underneath the earth and died instantly.

He said that the labourers had been digging the pit for approximately 15 to 20 days and at the time of the incident the pit was 12 ft deep, 8 ft long and 5 ft wide.

He also informed the investigators that when the police station was informed about the incident, police officers including the Officer in charge and the army came right away. The dead bodies were rescued from the pit and, after post-mortem, were sent to the village home in Madhupur.

He said that the person for whom the ditch was being dug was Syed Bhuiyan who works as a security guard in Nuclear Energy Commission Office in Dhaka. To help the families of the deceased labourers, he gave Tk.25,000 to each family (a total of Tk.50,000) and bore all the expenses of transporting the dead bodies to the village.

Another person in the market told the investigators that “A foreman had employed those workers on contract. On the day of the incident, the workers had told the foreman that they did want to do the work. Even then, the foreman was using them to do the work. After the incident, the foreman could not be located.”

Regarding the earth/soil type in Vadail area he said that, normally, the earth is quite hard in this area but with a little water it just melts like wax and becomes very soft. His opinion was that the water coming from a toilet 3 feet away from the pit made the earth around the pit area soft causing it to collapse.

A night guard of Vadail market also told us that at around 2 o’clock in the afternoon, while he was having a nap, he heard that two people had died. When he came to the place of the incident he saw people removing the earth from the pit. He then went to Ashulia police station to inform them. Half and hour later the army and police came and confined the area. The police and the army supervised the excavation of the pit and as a result one of the dead bodies were recovered at around 5 pm on the day of the incident; the other dead body was recovered around 4 pm the next day.

When asked about the newspaper article which had reported the death of three people, he said that 15 days before the death of these two labourers, a disabled person, locally known as Bhandari, died after falling into the pit. He said that he himself was in the toilet adjacent to the pit on that evening. After hearing screams he ran to the pit and saw that Bhandari person, in his state of drunkenness, had fallen inside the pit and was whimpering in pain. He was rescued from the pit then and there and was taken to a local clinic where he died. At that time the depth of the pit was approximately 7/8 ft. deep.

The investigators went to Syed Bhuiyan’s house in Vadail Maddhapara, the place of incident but his daughter and son-in-law declined to give any information regarding the incident

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Page last updated on February 4, 2008