The Varatia Parishad (tenants' council) has demanded a stop to rent increase during the upcoming year and that tenants not be evicted.
The members of Varatia Parishad formed a human chain in front of the National Press Club on Tuesday.
President of the organization, Md Baharan-e Sultan, said, "Homeowners have established a practice of increasing rent every January. The public at large are already suffering due to the current pandemic; the rent increase notice for 2021 is like throwing salt on an open wound."
"Owners increase rent every year by Tk500-Tk5000, depending on the condition and location of the houses. Therefore, the tenants have no alternative but to move or get evicted", he added.
He also said, "Private employees and small business owners are in grave financial danger since the general holiday was extended owing to Covid-19. Taking tenants' plight into consideration, we made a request (to landlords) on humanitarian grounds to waive residential and shop rent for three months during the lockdown. Many landlords honoured our request, and we are extremely grateful to them."
During this global crisis, increasing house rent is an absolutely inhuman act. The speakers at the event sought effective steps to stop eviction of tenants in the new year, seeking an executive order from the Prime Minister to block landlords from hiking up the rent in any way, shape or form.