For the third straight day, labour unrest in Bangladesh’s apparel industry pursued throughout Dhaka and Savar with clashes and police action being reported from multiple locations.
In Savar, at least 20 people were hurt in clashes during demonstrations at Hemayetpur around 8:30am, our local correspondent reports quoting witnesses and police.
The clash ensued when police fired several tear gas canisters and charged batons to disperse demonstrators from taking possession of a main road in the area.
At least 10 to 12 policemen were also injured as the agitating workers hurled brick chunks, Sana Shaminur Rahman, superintendent of Dhaka industrial police, said.
Meanwhile in Ashulia, hundreds of the workers clashed with police when they were barred to block a road there around 8:00am, industrial police source said.
In Dhaka city, around 200 garment workers tried to block the Airport Road protesting the same around 11:45am. The same was reported from Dakkhin Khan and Kalshi areas.
Till last reported, demonstrators were pursuing agitation at Dakkhin Khan and Kalshi.
WHAT ARE THE WORKERS DEMANDING?
The workers have alleged that the monthly wage in the seventh grade increased to Tk 8,000 from Tk 5,300 as per the latest gazette published by the government last year. But, the salary of the workers in other grades did not increase at the same rate.
The salary hike for the entry-level workers was more than that of their senior operators, who have been working for more than seven to eight years. The new wage has been effective from December 1. Major disparity in the salary hike was noticed in the third and fourth grades as their salaries were not raised like that of entry-level workers.
In most of the grades, other than the seventh, only Tk 500 was raised in the new salary structure, whereas an entry-level worker's salary had increased by Tk 2,700 at one go.