Bangladesh

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Shedding Jobs, Non-Payment of Wages

Actions sought against RMG factories

Staff Correspondent | Published: 01:00, Jun 04,2020

 
 

Labour leaders on Wednesday demanded that the government should take legal actions against the garment factories that are dismissing workers despite making pledges not to do so and are yet to pay wages of March and April and festival allowances.

Leaders complained that many of the factories started shedding workers after Eid holidays without complying with labour laws and the government instruction.

They also said that thousands of workers were yet to receive wages for March and April and festival allowances.

Labour leaders also said that criminal cases were filed against hundreds workers who staged demonstration demanding wages and allowances but no legal actions were taken against the factory owners, who violated the law by keeping wages and other allowances unpaid.

Sammilita Garments Shramik Federation on Wednesday once again asked the government to take legal action against factory owners.

Its president Nazma Akter in a letter to the labour secretary complained that many workers were terminated and they were not allowed to join works after Eid holidays.

Even, the workers, who were not allowed to join workplaces ignoring health ministry’s instruction, also were not paid wages and festival allowances, Nazma said in the letter.

Workers, who are continuing jobs, are in fear of being deprived of wages, she also said.

It said that the number of COVID-19-infected workers was rising as factories were not fully complying with health guidelines.

Joly Talukder, general secretary of Garment Workers Trade Union Centre, told New Age that workers had been forced to take to the streets every day to realise their demands as owners were not complying with labour laws.

She alleged that criminal cases were filed against hundreds of workers for demanding wages and allowances but no actions were taken against owners for not paying their workers as per the labour laws.

Joly also demanded that the government should to take legal action against defiant factory owners and to stop illegal dismissal of workers.  

According to Industrial Police, a total of 273 factories including 79 are textile and RMG units did not pay wages of March to their workers.

Of 79 factories, 39 are registered with Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association, 31 are members of Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association and nine are listed with Bangladesh Textile Mills Association.

According to the Industrial Police data, a total of 751 factories did not pay wages of April to workers.

Out of 751 factories, 156 are BGMEA members, 56 BKMEA, 35 BTMA mills, 496 are non-RMG units and eight are BEPZA units.

Data show that a total of 1,258 factories, including 470 RMG and textile units, did not pay festival allowance to their workers.

Out of 1,258 factories, 338 are BGMEA members, 85 BKMEA, 47 are BTMA members, 777 are non-RMG factories and 11 units are under BEPZA.

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