UAE detains 70 Bangladeshis for going on strike
Around 70 Bangladeshi workers of Arabtec, a leading construction company in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), were detained by the police yesterday in connection with going on strike for over a week.
Going on strike is illegal in the UAE.
Abu Zafar, consul general of Bangladesh embassy in Dubai, said the workers who displayed gestures of anger and disrespect are now under police custody. Around 5,000 workers of a particular labour camp have been on strike for the last seven days demanding pay hike, he said.
"They want 1,200 dirhams for the general workers who are currently drawing 650 dirhams per month," Zafar told The Daily Star over the phone.
They finally returned to work yesterday after the authorities agreed to raise their pay to 800 dirhams, provided they work an hour or two extra when work is available, he said.
"The impact of global economic recession is still lingering in Dubai," Abu Zafar said.
Earlier, workers from Dubai told The Daily Star that around 30,000 workers were on strike but Abu Zafar clarified the matter saying that, only workers of one labour camp participated in the work abstention.
Strike in the UAE is illegal and there is no scope for workers to increase their salary outside their job contract.
Anybody who does not agree to work could return home, he said.