Thousands of ready-made garment workers from about 20 factories staged demonstrations on Tuesday in Ashulia, Gazipur, Narayanganj and Chittagong demanding full wages for April and payment of arrears.
Of them, workers of 12 factories had been agitating in the Ashulia and Gazipur industrial area for the last few days.
Workers of only 243 garment and textile factories of Bangladesh have been paid for April so far while 117 factories have not paid their workers for March.
However, Gazipur DBL Group’s workers on Monday vandalised their factory while demanding 100 percent wages for April and Eid bonus.
The government of Bangladesh has already given a directive on this issue, saying only those who were present at work for the entire month of April will get 100 percent salaries.
Workers who have worked partly in a month will get 100 percent payment for those days they worked and 65 percent for the rest of the days, according to the directive.
Workers ate saying they are not happy with 65 percent salary for April .
They feel the government wants to pay them 100 percent from the Tk5000-crore stimulus fund announced by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina recently but but owners want to deprive them.
According to the industrial police, workers of only 243 garment and textile factories have been paid for April.
78 factories are members of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), a nationwide organization of garments manufacturers in Bangladesh .
The BGMEA head office is located in the capital city of Dhaka and it plays a pivotal role in boosting garment exports .
39 factories are Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA ) and 21 are Bangladesh Textile Mills Association (BTMA) members.
117 garment and textile factories have not paid their workers for March. Of them, 63 are mrmbers of BGMEA, 44 of BKMEA and 10 of BTMA .
The workers of readymade garment (RMG) factories in Dhaka, Gazipur and Chattogram demonstrated in front of the factories on Monday for payment of their arrears and Eid bonus.
The agitating workers of Arugas Metal Private Limited claimed that the factory management had not been paid their wages for last one month.
The Chattogram’s Karnaphuli upazila’s garment factory workers demonstrated in front of the factory on Monday demanding payment of their arrears and Eid bonus.The agitating workers of Golden Sun Limited alleged that the authorities of the factory had not paid their wages for last two months.
Since the workers have been refused their Eid bonus, so they started demonstration in the morning to realise their due wages and Eid bonus, said the workers.
However, Omar Haider, Manager of Golden Sun, said they had concluded mutual understanding about the issue. “The wages for March and April will be paid on May 17 and May 20 respectively through Rocket MFS service,” he said.Besides, the discussion on giving Eid bonus to the workers was going on with the higher authorities, he added.
On the other hand, hundreds of RMG workers protested in Gazipur demanding their hundred percent salaries and Eid bonus.
The agitating workers of Thanbi Print World Limited, Fareast Net and Dyeing Limited and Denimaker Denim Limited claimed that the authorities of the factories had not paid their full wages for last two months.
Workers of another garment factory staged demonstrations in Ashulia near to Dhaka the Capital on Wednesday demanding reopening of their closed factory and payment of their salaries and dues.
Ashulia police station officer-in-charge Sheikh Rezaul Haque Dipu told Easternlink the situation is normal now.
The workers alleged that the factory authorities threatened them over the demonstrations several times . However, factory managing director Tamim Ahmed could not be reached over phone.
According to some workers of ‘Adiat Apparels’ garment factory, the factory authorities hung a notice on 31st March declaring it closed until 31st May and half salary of the month of March was paid on 24 and 25th of March.
BGMEA president Ribana Huq told Easternlink that they have paid the salary of almost 78 percent of the workers. The rest will get their salaries within Thursday, she said. “We are trying to pay all workers within April 20” Rubana said.
“We requested all banks to cooperate with them during the coronavirus crisis. No worker will go without salary for March.”
BGMEA claimed a total 1,186 factories have been paid salary among 2,274 BGMEA member factories till last week.
RMG worker arrested for spreading rumors in Gazipur ,Dhaka
A garment worker Badal was arrested on Tuesday evening for spreading rumor that a worker was killed by the police, which led to violence at the Muazuddin Textile Ltd at Shafipur in Gaziour’s Kaliakoir yesterday.
Confirming the matter to Easternlink an official of Industrial Police said : “He is now under the custody of Detective Branch (DB) of police”. 2,000 workers of the factory were upset with factory owners paying them only 60 percent of tgeir dues on Monday. They started strike from 9:30am Tuesday and later when police reached the spot, a rumour was spread that a worker was killed by the police and then angry workers vandalised the factory. They also beat about 12 officials of the factory and confined them inside. About one hour later police controlled the situation.