A total of 430 victims of Rana Plaza collapse yesterday received Tk 50,000 each in compensation from the retailers who used to sell garment products manufactured in factories housed in the building.
UK-based clothing retailer Primark provided the money to the victims on the "loss of future earning basis" through mobile banking service bKash. However, the distribution was managed by the Rana Plaza Trust Fund, said Roy Ramesh, general secretary of the IndustriALL Bangladesh Council.
The compensations for the dead workers were sent to their families.
Primark will disburse a total of $9 million gradually to 580 people who used to work in New Wave Bottoms Limited, a garment factory on the second floor of the Rana Plaza that collapsed on April 24 last year, killing 1,138 people.
And on the first day of the first phase, 580 victims were supposed to be paid, but 150 of them could not produce necessary documents to receive the money. They have been asked to come to Savar Cantonment School on April 11 with valid documents to receive their part of the compensation, Ramesh said.
Primark will also contribute $1 million to the trust fund for all the victims of the tragedy. It has already donated $2 million to the victims earlier.
“With the first installment, the victims have been paid total Tk 95,000 each as Primark had paid Tk 45,000 to each of them a few days after the collapse last year,” Ramesh said.
Besides them, other 3,059 victims who used work in the other factories inside the building will be compensated Tk 50,000 each in the first phase as well. The compensation will be provided from the Rana Plaza Trust Fund and will be distributed on April 15, he added.
A total of 29 international retailers and brands used to outsource garment items from five factories housed in Savar's Rana Plaza.
Of these, Primark alone has started paying the compensations and 10 others have promised to contribute to the trust fund.
Ramesh said the United Federation of Garment Workers, which he leads, will stage a rally on April 1 and hold a press conference on April 11 at the National Press Club to urge other importers to contribute to the Rana Plaza Trust Fund so that the victims can be compensated properly.
“We will also stage a rally in front of the Rana Plaza site on April 19 in a bid to raise fund by April 24, the first anniversary of the disaster,” Ramesh said.
According to the Convention 121 of the International Labour Organisation, the financial compensation for the death of a worker has been fixed between Tk 28 lakh and Tk 29 lakh and for each worker with permanent disability around Tk 43 lakh.