President Hamid, PM Hasina greet workers on May Day

President Md Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina have greeted the workers across the globe on May Day, the historic day epitomising workers’ struggle for their rights.

Published : 30 April 2016, 06:44 PM
Updated : 30 April 2016, 06:44 PM

Bangladesh will observe the day along with other countries on Sunday. The day is a public holiday.

President Hamid in a message called for establishing good worker-owner relations, ensuring fair wages and safe and congenial workplace.

He emphasised enhancing skills of workers and observed that there is no alternative to manufacturing world-class products in the competitive world.

He said the government had undertaken various labour-friendly development programmes and ensured safe work atmosphere and fixed the minimum wage for the workers.

“Now the working class is getting the benefit of these measures,” he added.

On May 1, 1886, ten workers were killed in police firing near Hay Market in the US city of Chicago.

Those killed were workers campaigning for an eight-hour work shift instead of the prevalent 12 hours.

The authorities were finally forced to accept the demand, leading to the universal acceptance of the eight-hour shift.

An international working class rally on July 14, 1889 in Paris declared May 1 as the International Workers Solidarity Day as a tribute to the slain Chicago workers.

Since then, May 1 is observed globally as the day dedicated to workers’ solidarity.

In her message, Prime Minister Hasina paid respect to the people who sacrificed their lives to establish fundamental rights of the working people in Chicago in 1886.

She said her father Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman had struggled throughout his life for realising the rights of the deprived and working class of the country.

Hasina said the present government had reopened mills and factories closed during the BNP-Jamaat-e-Islami tenure.

The government already announced minimum wage for workers of 38 industrial sectors, including garments, she added.

The prime minister also pointed out that her government ‘modernised’ the Bangladesh Labour Law, 2006 and formulated Bangladesh Labour (Amendment) Law, 2013 for the welfare of the working people.

She hoped that production at all mills and factories would increase through cordial relations between employees and employers by following the spirit of the historic May Day.

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia wished the working class happiness, peace, progress and success.