Unrest feared at 110 RMG industries

September 5, 2010

An intelligence agency of police suspects possible unrest before Eid over wages in 110 garment factories in the capital as well as in Savar, Narayanganj and Gazipur.

The government had already requested all RMG factory owners to pay their employees within September 7 to avert any untoward incidents sparked by disgruntled employees.

The Special Branch (SB) of Police submitted a list containing names of the factories at a meeting on ‘Eid Security’ held at Police Headquarters yesterday, sources said. There are around 6,500 garment factories in Bangladesh.

“It is a list of possible organisations where unpleasantness might occur, though the figures may change,” said Hassan Mahmood Khandker, inspector general of police (IGP).

According to sources, police high-ups, including the IGP, have spoken to the leaders of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) and Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA) after the meeting to seek their cooperation in this regard.

“We don’t want any unpleasant incident to take place over wages and won’t spare those who don’t pay before Eid,” warned the IGP, adding, “Everyone should follow the directives from the labour ministry and pay the workers by September.”

The meeting also discussed the issue regarding the safety of homebound people from extortionists as well as other kinds of harassers.

Police forces across the country have been instructed to take adequate measures to ensure safety of the travelers, said the IGP.

The home minister also visited a number of market places and found the security to be satisfactory as police was present to prevent crimes like extortion or mugging from occurring, he added.

Chaired by the IGP, the meeting was attended by Zaved Patwary, additional IGP and chief of SB, Shamsuddoha Khandaker, additional IGP (Finance); Muhammad Aminul Islam, additional IGP (Training); AKM Shahidul Hoque, Dhaka Metropolitan Police Commissioner and Md Mukhlesur Rahman director general of Rapid Action Battalion, among others.

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