Asbestos roofs widely used on the houses of the tea garden workers in greater Sylhet region pose high risks of cancer, said health experts and environmentalists.
The natural mineral was once lauded for its versatility, but in the mid-twentieth century, scientists discovered that inhalation of asbestos fibres for long can cause fatal illnesses including lung cancer.
About one lakh workers die each year from asbestos-related diseases, the International Labour Organization says.
More than 50 countries have banned or restricted the use of asbestos since the early 1970s.
However, the tea workers in Sylhet region have been using asbestos for long as it was distributed by the tea garden owners.
Deaths of quite a few tea garden workers in cancer raised concerns over the use of asbestos recently.