Balukhali camp-9 managing committee chairman (Rohingya leader) Abdul Amin confirmed this to Prothom Alo.

The chairman Abdul Amin said that the fire suddenly broke out on Tuesday. Upon hearing the news, APBn members, the fire service and residents of the camp came rushing to the spot. A total of 33,000 members of 8,600 families live in this camp. There were 115 houses in the H-2 block.

The Rohinyas began to shout in alarm seeing the flames. The APBn members, volunteers and Rohingyas managed to douse the flames within an hour. However, 63 homes were reduced to ashes in the flames and 4 or 5 persons were injured while fighting the fire. They were sent to hospital for medical attention. A few children remain missing in the incident.

Speaking over mobile phone, some Rohingyas said that the fire probably broke out from a gas cylinder being used for stoves in preparing rice cakes and other Eid delicacies. Most of the Rohngya women are still not adept at using gas cylinders. In Myanmar they were used to gathering firewood from the forests for their cooking. That is why such accidents are frequent in the camps.

Commander (superintendent of police) of the Cox’s Bazar-8 Armed Police Battalion (APBn) Shihab Kaiser told Prothom Alo that they rushed to the spot upon hearing about the fire and also informed the fire service. They have not confirmed the source of the fire so far. They have heard that in the chaos that ensued upon seeing the smoke, a few children have gone missing.

On 22 March this year a fire in five refugee camps of Ukhiya, including Balukhali, razed 10,000 homes to the ground. At least 11 Rohinyas including 6 children died in that fire, around 450 injured and 45,000 rendered homeless. Another 400 had been missing.

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