Jute mill workers called to action for wages, arrears
Wednesday, 27 August 2008

Future programmes underway

Desk Report

An organisation of jute mill workers has called upon employees of state-owned jute mills to unite in demands for payment of arrears and allowances and resumption of production at the mills.

The Jute Yarn Textile Mill Workers Action Council said they would stage a sit-in on Sept 3 in front the head offices of the 15 nationalised jute mills, and form human chains around the mills on Sept 9.
The organisation may announce future programmes depending on the feedback from the government and workers, said the council's convenor Abul Bashar at a press conference held Tuesday at Asad Auditorium on Topkhana Road.
"The jute mill workers and employees have not been given their due pay hikes since 1998, and have faced stoppage of their regular weekly wages and salaries," said Bashar.
"Financial benefits after retirement, retrenchment, dismissal have also remained outstanding for many years," said Bashar.
Alleging that the government has been deliberately breaching labour laws and regulations, the council convenor said: "The workers are not being paid the 20 percent dearness allowance promised by the government."
"The nationalised jute mills have almost stopped production as the government has yet to start buying raw jute in the current jute season."
To resolve the stalemate, he said, the government must pay workers their arrears and allowances.
"The government must also reinstate the workers that were retrenched and dismissed for their involvement in labour protests and organised activism."
"All embargos imposed on trade union activities must also be lifted," Bashar said.
The council's joint convenors Shahidullah Chowdhury, Shafiuddin Ahmed and Lutfor Rahman were among those present at the press conference.

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