Workers of at least three readymade garments factories in the city's Mirpur and Uttara area demonstrated on Monday, blocking the Mirpur and Airport roads demanding their salaries and bonuses ahead of Eid. This caused severe traffic congestion in the city for the whole day.
The demonstration left seven workers injured when police baton charged and fired tear gas to disperse them.
The traffic congestion was primarily on the Mirpur and Airport Roads – two major arterial city roads– when the workers started their protest, occupying the roads. At 1pm the police dispersed the protesters from the roads but the Dhaka's citizens had to bear the brunt of traffic congestion till night.
The protesters say the police baton charged and fired tear gas to disperse them, injuring seven of their co-workers.
The workers of Cotton Textile And Apparels Ltd in Mirpur started demonstrating Monday morning, occupying Mirpur Road.
At 12pm, workers of Intraco Design Ltd and Intraco Fashion Ltd of Uttara also started protesting, blocking Airport Road, demanding their salaries and bonuses.
The managing director of these Uttara factories is Elias Patwary, but his phone was switched off when there were attempts to contact him.
Intraco Design Ltd labour leader Mohammad Dulal told The Business Standard (TBS) there are 1400 workers at these two factories and about 1000 workers from these factories took part in yesterday's movement.
Dulal also said that despite regular production at these factories, they did not get any salary for the last two months.
He announced they will hold a meeting today (Tuesday) on the issue and continue their protest if the problem is not resolved.
All three RMG factories are members of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA).
BGMEA Vice President Khandoker Rafiqul Islam told TBS the problem will be resolved before Eid.
But one BGMEA official said they are unable to contact the factory owners. A meeting will be held at the labour ministry today (Tuesday).
Severe Traffic Jams on Mirpur and Airport Roads:
Airport road literally came to a standstill Monday due to the workers' movement. City folk suffered all day in traffic jams although the police forced the protesters to leave the streets.