Bangladesh factory miracle survivor to leave hospital


DHAKA: An 18-year-old Bangladeshi seamstress who became a national heroine when she was pulled from a collapsed factory after 17 days in the rubble has fully recovered and will leave hospital on Thursday, the army said.

The teenager, known only as Reshma, drank rainwater and foraged food from coworkers’ lunch boxes to survive in the ruins of Rana Paza, a nine-storey garment factory complex outside Dhaka which collapsed on April 24 killing 1,129 people.

Her survival against the odds became a rare ray of hope for a nation shocked by one of world’s worst industrial disasters.

Since her rescue on May 10, Reshma has been undergoing treatment at the Savar Combined Military Hospital, the army said in a statement late Wednesday.

“Reshma has now fully recovered physically and mentally. She will be released from the hospital on Thursday,” the statement said.

Reshma, who hailed from a remote village in the western border district of Dinajpur, has been offered a job at the luxury Westin Hotel in the capital, the army said.

Two days after her rescue the teenager said she would never return to the garment sector.

Reshma had joined a factory located in the doomed building just 22 days before it collapsed, at a monthly salary of 4,700 taka ($60).

At the time of the collapse more than 3,000 garment workers were on shift at the complex housing five factories, where they made clothing for Western retailers including Britain’s Primark and Spain’s Mango.

The disaster highlighted the often precarious factory conditions faced by low-wage workers in the world’s second-largest garment producer.


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