Police yesterday foiled garments workers' attempt to besiege the BGMEA headquarters in the capital's Karwan Bazar, demanding death penalty for Rana Plaza owner Sohel Rana and adequate compensations for the families of the deceased and injured workers.
Meanwhile, different garment workers and social organisations held demonstrations demanding exemplary punishment of the responsible persons, including Sohel, for the Rana Plaza tragedy last year that killed at least 1,135 workers and injured hundreds.
Garments Sramik Trade Union Kendra held a rally in front of the capital's Jatiya Press Club. Later, they marched towards the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) building to encircle it.
But law enforcers cordoned off them on the road, halting vehicular movement for about 40 minutes before the marchers left the place.
"We prevented them suspecting that they might create chaos on the road," said Ramna zone petrol inspector Shahidul Islam.
Addressing the rally in front of the Press Club, Manjurul Ahsan Khan, adviser of the Union, said the government was trying to protect the interests of the owners, not the workers.
"We demand publications of the list of donations to the prime minister's fund that the government received to assist the Rana Plaza victims so far," he said. "We want transparency and accountability of the fund to ensure adequate compensation for the victims."
Advocate Mantu Ghosh, president of the Union, said while the victims were leading miserable life and not getting treatment money, the PM's fund was yet to be distributed.
Meanwhile, some garment workers and relatives of the victims blocked the Dhaka-Aricha highway in Savar for four hours yesterday, demanding capital punishment for Rana.
Earlier, several thousand workers of at least 20 pro-workers organisations and victims' relatives staged a sit-in in front of the Rana Plaza site with the same demand.
Meanwhile, pro-BNP Bangladesh Jatiyatabadi Karmajibi Dal held a rally and offered prayers for the victims and distributed food among the destitute in front of the Press Club.
At the programme BNP standing committee member Rafiqul Islam Mia said if the prime minister's fund was properly distributed, the victims did not have to suffer any more.
He demanded disclosure of the probe report on the tragedy soon.
Our Savar correspondent reports: Several organisations yesterday held different programmes in Savar to mark the first anniversary of the tragedy.
These include Rana Plaza Garment Sramik Trade Union, Sammilito Garment Sramik Federation, Garment Sraomik Oikya Forum, Bangladesh Garment Workers Solidarity, Bangladesh Garments and Industrial Workers Federation, Garment Sramik Shongram Parishad.
Socio-cultural and professionals' organisations including Jatiya Mukti Council, Association for Law Research and Human Rights, German Development Cooperation, Gonoshasthya Kendra, and Bangladesh Textile and Garment Workers Federation also held programmes.
These organisations placed wreaths at the monument "Protibade Protirodhe" erected for the victims near the Rana Plaza and held demonstrations. Dhaka district administration and Dhaka district police also placed wreaths there.
On the occasion, Bangladesh's first Prosthetics and Orthotics (P&O) School was inaugurated at the Centre for the Rehabilitation of the Paralysed (CRP). It will provide assistances to the maimed Rana Plaza victims.