Worker unrest halts production at DEPZ factory

December 8, 2010

Production at a garment factory at Dhaka Export Processing Zone in Ashulia of Savar remained suspended after a section of workers went on work abstention since Wednesday morning.

A high official of Young One Hi-Tech Sportswear Limited, seeking anonymity, said the workers, who are working at the factory for a long time, started the demonstration as the comparatively new workers are getting more benefit than them (old workers) as per the new pay scale implemented from November.

They are demanding a balanced payment according to the their work experience and cancellation of the grading system, which is maintained in paying their wages, he added.

The workers began the demonstration on Tuesday and did not join work Wednesday morning suspending production at the factory.

Savar Circle Assistant Superintendent of Police Monwar Hossain said the disgruntle workers stopped working from Wednesday morning following dissatisfaction over the payment.

Our Chittagong staff correspondent adds: At least three officials of Korean garment factory GS Hawae at Chittagong Export Processing Zone (CEPZ) in the port city were injured when workers beat them up following reduction of their payment.

Witnesses said around 3,300 workers took control over the factory at about 8:00am after padlocking its main gate and beat up 10 to 12 staffs of the factory. They also vandalised the factory machineries.

The angry workers claimed that most of them have received less payment after the new pay scale announced by the Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority (BEPZA) was implemented from November 1.

When contacted CEPZ General Manager SM Abdur Rashid said the basic salary of the workers might have been reduced due to the new wage structure.

A meeting is being going on between the CEPZ authorities and the factory management till filing of the report at about 1:00pm to resolve the crisis.

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