The fire broke out around 4:30pm on Friday and spread to the ground and first floors of four out of six buildings on the compound in the Madanpur bus stand area, said Abdullah Al Arefin, deputy assistant director of Narayanganj Fire Service.
He said ten fire engines of the nearby services, including Dhaka, Narayanganj and Sonargaon were tackling the blaze at the plant located just across from the Olympic Biscuit factory on Sonargaon Road.
"What caused the fire is still unknown. No casualties have been reported so far," he added.
The firefighters brought the fire under control by 9pm, but the work to put out the small flames was still ongoing, said Brig Gen Md Sazzad Hussain, director general of the fire service.
“We still don’t have information on anyone missing. We’ll conduct a search operation inside after dousing the flames in all the buildings. The real picture will be clear then. Our investigation committee will determine how the fire originated.”
Zaheen Knitwears runs knitting, dyeing and sewing units in the factory complex, according to the company’s website.
Jasim Mia, chief of the factory workers, said, “Friday is a weekly holiday, so except for some, most of the units in the factory were closed. There were fewer people inside than on the other days.”
Worker Masum Billah said the finishing and woven sections were open while the knitting section was closed.
"All of a sudden I saw a blaze on the upper floor. First, there was a fire on the first floor and it was leaping upwards, then it spread. We all came out then,” said Masum.
Earlier, Narayanganj Additional Superintendent of Police Sheikh Billal Hossain said the firefighters struggled to extinguish the fire as the compound is a large one.
"However, no worker was trapped inside and no casualties have been reported yet,” Billal Hossain added.