BJMC meeting with workers fails to end stalemate

Staff Correspondent | Published: 00:31, Apr 07,2019

 
 

A meeting between the authorities of Bangladesh Jute Mills Corporation and leaders of Bangladesh Patkol Sramik League and all state-owned jute mills’ workers unions ended without any specific decision on Saturday.
Against the backdrop of state-owned jute mill workers’ 72-hour strike and four-hour road and railway blockade for three-days since April 2, BJMC chairman called the leaders for the meeting at BJMC headquarters in Dhaka.
The meeting discussed the demands of workers, including payment of all due wages and salaries and implementation of the National Wage and Productivity Commission Award 2015.
‘The meeting in two phases ended without any decision. We think that the authorities have lack of sincerity in implementing our demands,’ Bangladesh Patkol Sramik League general secretary Kamruzzaman Chunnu told New Age.
He said that the Patkol Sramik League and leaders of all the workers’ unions would meet on Sunday to decide further course of action.
In the first phase of the meeting at the BJMC conference room between 11:30 am and 2:30 pm, top officials of the corporation, project heads of the mills and a number of union leaders and Patkol Sramik League spoke.
In his concluding speech, BJMC chairman Shah Muhammad Nasim said that the corporation agreed with all the logical demands of the workers and hoped that both the BJMC and the workers would jointly overcome the crisis.
Addressing the meeting as the chair, the corporation’s director (production and jute) Delwar Hossain hoped that the demands would be met as soon as possible.
Referring to attack on a project head during the workers’ protests, one of the project heads warned the leaders present in the meeting saying that they should think that they are the only leaders, there are others bigger than them.
‘The government has huge power, they won’t allow any anarchy,’ a leader quoted him as saying.
Patkol Sramik League president Sardar Motahar Uddin, general secretary Kamruzzaman Chunnu, Crescent Jute Mills Workers Union president Murad Hossain, Platinum Jubilee Jute Mills Workers’ Union president Shahana Sharmin, among others, also spoke.
BJMC secretary AKM Tareq conducted the meeting.
As the meeting ended without any decision, as per the workers’ leaders’ proposal, the BJMC chairman along with top officials again met with 15 workers’ representatives after 5:00 pm.
‘The two-hour meeting ended without any result. The management said that they would pay the dues after getting the fund and would consider about National Wage and Productivity Commission Award 2015 after July,’ a leader present in the meeting told New Age.
The other demands of protesting workers include adequate budgetary allocation for the jute sector, payment of the due provident fund and gratuity to the retired workers and the insurance benefits to the families of the deceased workers, appointment of workers, regularisation of temporary workers, reappointment of sacked workers and the balancing, modernisation, rehabilitation and expansion of the jute mills for better productivity.

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