Barguna chief judicial magistrate Mohammad Mahbub Alam accepted the case and asked the police station concerned to take the complaint as a ‘First Information Report (FIR)’, said administrative official of the court Akhter Hossain.

Saifur Rahman Sohag, a lawyer of the plaintiff, said it is clear that there was negligence from the part of the owner and staff of the launch and the court ordered the police station concerned to take the cases as an ‘FIR’.

Advocate Nazmul Islam Nasir, chairman of Baliatoli union in Barguna district, said, “There was clear negligence from the part of the owner and staff of the launch that caused the fire, deaths and damages.”

He also demanded immediate arrest of the accused in the case.

Meanwhile, the search drive in Sugandha river was going on for the third consecutive day on Sunday for tracing those who went missing following a massive fire in the launch on Friday.

The divers from local fire service and Coast Guard resumed the search operation on Saturday morning and it is still continuing, said Khalulur Rahman, officer-in-charge of sadar police station in Jhalakathi district.

“No new body was recovered from the river till the filing of this report around 11:00am,” he said.

Besides, the control room, set up by the local administration, listed the names of 25 missing people with information given by their relatives and family members.

Earlier, the bodies of 23 people were buried in a mass graveyard following a namaz-e-janaza in Barguna on Saturday.

The bodies were buried at Potkakhali mass graveyard in Sadar upazila around 12:00pm.

The blaze broke out at around 3:00am on Friday on the Barguna-bound launch carrying some 800 passengers from Dhaka and it engulfed the entire vessel within 10 minutes.

The death toll from the fire incident climbed to 41 on Saturday night. Besides, over 70 people suffered injuries and many of them are undergoing treatment at different hospitals.

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