Bangladesh de­lays screen­ing of ‘Rana Plaza’ film

The China Post - - ARTS - BY JULHAS ALAM

Bangladesh’s High Court has im­posed a six-month ban on the screen­ing of a movie about a gar­ment worker who was res­cued from the rub­ble 17 days af­ter a five-story fac­tory com­plex col­lapsed more than two years ago, killing more than 1,000 peo­ple.

A two-mem­ber panel of judges or­dered the ban Mon­day on the film “Rana Plaza” af­ter a writ pe­ti­tion was sub­mit­ted al­leg­ing that the movie has scenes of hor­ror, cru­elty and vi­o­lence that could neg­a­tively af­fect work­ers in the coun­try’s vi­tal gar­ment in­dus­try.

The di­rec­tor, Nazrul Is­lam Khan, had ear­lier ar­gued that the re­al­life story of Reshma Be­gum de­picts courage amid the tragedy.

The April 24, 2013, dis­as­ter left 1,135 peo­ple dead. Thou­sands more were res­cued from the ru­ins of the il­le­gally built com­plex that con­tained five fac­to­ries that supplied gar­ments to in­ter­na­tional com­pa­nies.

When the build­ing be­gan col­laps­ing, Be­gum said she raced down a stair­well into the base­ment, where she be­came trapped in a pocket of space that al­lowed her to sur­vive. She found some dried food and bot­tles of wa­ter to sus­tain her un­til res­cuers found her.

Be­gum’s life has changed since then as he is cur­rently em­ployed in a ho­tel owned by an in­ter­na­tional chain.

The col­lapse trig­gered crit­i­cism at home and abroad, and many big brands came for­ward to help Bangladesh re­form the sec­tor for bet­ter work­ing and safety con­di­tions.

In­ves­ti­ga­tors say a host of fac­tors con­trib­uted to the build­ing’s col­lapse: It was over­loaded with ma­chines and gen­er­a­tors, con­structed on swampy land, and the owner added floors in vi­o­la­tion of the orig­i­nal build­ing plan.

On Mon­day, the High Court also asked the coun­try’s film cen­sor board to ex­plain in four weeks why the clear­ance cer­tifi­cate for screen­ing the movie should not be can­celled.

Si­ra­jul Is­lam Rony, the writ pe­ti­tioner and a trade union leader, said he ap­pealed to the court be­cause the film’s pro­ducer had not re­moved some scenes of hor­ror from the movie as in­structed by the court in March.


A Bangladeshi movie theater worker re­moves posters of a film “Rana Plaza” in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Tues­day, Aug. 25.

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