RMG workers block roads at Dhaka’s Kamalapur, Arambagh

Garment workers occupied two roads in Dhaka on Tuesday, demanding compensation for the family of a fellow worker killed in a road accident near Kamalapur Railway Station.

Staff Correspondentbdnews24.com
Published : 8 Dec 2015, 08:36 AM
Updated : 8 Dec 2015, 08:55 AM

Angry workers also vandalised some vehicles in Mugda near Kamalapur, said Deputy Commissioner (Motijheel) Anwar Hossain of Dhaka Metropolitan Police.

The nearly four-hour blockade from around 9:30am halted traffic through Char-rastar Morh near the station and on Toynbee Circular Road, causing massive tailbacks in the adjacent Kamalapur, Motijheel and Arambagh areas.

The traffic normalised after the blockade was lifted around 1:45pm.

Garment worker Aklima Akter, aged around 30, was killed by a Balaka Transport bus at Char-rastar Morh around 8:45pm on Monday on her way home from work. Her colleagues Rehana Begum, 27, Hazera begum, 30, and Jasim, 28, were injured in the incident.

Soon after the accident, garment workers staged demonstrations and blocked a road until police intervened.

Locals said workers of Pauline Garments, Drive Star, Ipu Garments and Olio Apparels started demonstrating again on Tuesday morning, occupying the roads in front of both the railway station and Motjheel Ideal School.

“Proper compensation has to be paid to the family of the dead. The driver responsible for this has to be tried and steps have to be taken to prevent such accidents in future,” said Shefali Begum who works at Olio Apparels Ltd, owned by former BGMEA president Salam Murshedi.

Salma, a worker of Drive Star garment factory, alleged, “Not just Aklima, two more workers named Sathi and Rokeya were also killed. Police have hidden the bodies.”

Inspector Abdul Mabud of Shajahanpur Police Station, who was standing right beside her, denied the allegation. “It is only a rumour. Only one person has been killed in the accident.”

“What you have heard is not true,” he told Salma. “The guilty driver has been arrested and a case has been filed against him.”

Supporting the workers’ demands, Deputy Commissioner Anwar Hossain said, “We agree with the workers. We have already asked the garment owners and BGMEA to solve this.”

Manzur Khaled, a crisis management official of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), visited the spot.

“We soon will find a solution to this problem,” he told bdnews24.com.

Toufique Imrose Khalidi
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher