The High Court today directed the government not to release the due funds of employers of Chevron Bangladesh to the company, as they apprehend that the US oil and gas giant might leave the country without paying their funds.
The HC bench of Justice Zinat Ara and Justice Kazi Md Ejarul Haque Akondo came up with the order following a supplementary writ petition collectively filed by 538 Chevron employees.
Petitioners’ lawyer Barrister Omar Sadat told The Daily Star that Chevron might leave Bangladesh anytime as it has no fixed asset in Bangladesh and transfer of its share to Xhenhua, a Chinese company, is now under process.
If Chevron leaves Bangladesh by selling its shares, the employers will not get their due payments under the Workers Participation Fund, he said, adding that around 76 million US dollars are due to the employers of Chevron since 2006.
Barrister Sadat said the HC will decide in its final verdict how the employers of Chevron will get the due funds as a rule is pending before it.
Following the writ petition collectively filed by the 538 employees of Chevron, the HC on December 15 last year issued the rule asking the government to explain why it should not be directed to take appropriate legal action against Chevron Bangladesh for not sharing a due part of its profit with its employees.
The employees urged the HC to order the government to take necessary action against Chevron for not giving a part of profit to them -- accumulated from 2006 to 2013.
Chevron is supposed to share 5 percent of net profits with its workers and officials under Bangladesh Labour Act 2006, Barrister Omar Sadat told The Daily Star.
The law also permits the government to take legal action against the company for not doing so, he added.