Over a thousand bidi workers formed a human chain in front of the Akij Bidi Factory in Ishwardi municipality area under the district yesterday morning protesting sudden closure of the factory.
“An order from the authorities of Akij Group, effecting closure of the Ishwardi unit of their bidi factory for an indefinite period from April 3, came here on Saturday, April 2,” Md Kamruzzaman, manager of Akij Bidi factory, Ishwardi unit, told journalists.
Like other days the workers came to the factory gate yesterday morning but they found a 'closure announcement' there.
They started demonstration, demanding reopening of the factory.
The aggrieved bidi workers said they were highly dependent on the job for livelihood and the whimsical closing of the factory has left them in serious trouble.
The factory was closed without paying full dues to the workers, they said.
“We are used to the bidi making work. It is difficult for us to get alternative employment. Closure of the factory has left us jobless and helpless. My son is reading in BA (Honours) but his higher study has now become uncertain,” said Shahidul Pramanik, a worker of the factory.
Many other workers including Kalachand and Abu Taleb expressed utter helplessness due to sudden closure of the bidi factory.
Over one thousand bidi workers are employed at Akij Bidi Factory in Ishwardi, each getting Tk 26 for making one thousand bidi.