Saidur, a member of the restaurant staff, was recollecting his horrific experience when armed militants stormed Holey Artisan Bakery in the diplomatic zone in Gulshan on July 1, 2016
Saidur Rahman Syed was busy calculating the daily sales when all of a sudden some armed people entered the Holey Artisan Bakery. They started shooting indiscriminately.
"All inside the restaurant were screaming and running for their lives. Some rushed to the kitchen while some to the bathroom to find an escape way. Within moments the place turned into a valley of death," said Saidur.
After entering the restaurant, the gunmen first shot foreign citizens.
Saidur, a member of the restaurant staff, was recollecting his horrific experience when armed militants stormed Holey Artisan Bakery in the diplomatic zone in Gulshan on July 1, 2016.
He now works at another restaurant of the same owner in Gulshan-2.
"I went to the back of the restaurant. I thought the shooting would stop. But the situation kept deteriorating. Later, I walked back up stairs and took shelter on the rooftop," Saidur said.
"A few hours went past. I did not yet realise that militants attacked our restaurant. I was trying to perceive what was going on inside."
Saidur said police came around an hour after the militants had entered the restaurant. "Then came the members of other law enforcement agencies. From the rooftop, I saw some policemen standing just in front of the restaurant. I heard a big noise and later saw some people were taken outside. Shooting was going on in intervals," he said.
Saidur and the others who had taken shelter on the rooftop started to fear that the militants might come up to the roof and kill them. Some of them jumped off the roof.
"I also jumped off and left the place immediately," he said.
"I still cannot sleep when this terrible memory flashes in my mind. Horror haunted me for several months after the incident," he added.
After the deadliest attack, Saidur went back to his village home in Kushtia. But his employer kept sending him the monthly wage. Later, the owner of Holey Artisan Bakery opened another eatery on a smaller scale in Gulshan-2 and Saidur joined his post.
He and another restaurant staff member who survived in the attack are now working in the new restaurant.
Asked about today's verdict in the Holey Artisan attack, Saidur said he wants exemplary punishment to the perpetrators of the gruesome attack. He also does not want to see repetition of such terror attacks in Bangladesh.