Tea workers accept Tk170 wage fixed by PM Hasina

The new daily wage for tea workers was fixed in a meeting between the premier and the 13-member delegation of tea garden owners

The protesting tea workers across the nation have accepted the new daily wage of Tk170 fixed by the prime minister on Saturday.

Confirming the matter to Dhaka Tribune, Nripen Pal, general secretary of the central committee of Bangladesh Tea Workers Union, said: “We got what we wanted.”

Earlier in the evening, the daily wage for tea workers was fixed at Tk170 after weeks of protest. 

The Tk50 increase was fixed in a meeting between Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and the 13-member delegation of tea garden owners in Ganabhaban.

After the meeting, PM's Chief Secretary Ahmed Kaykau briefed the media.

He said: “The prime minister has urged tea workers to join work from Sunday. She will soon hold discussions with the tea workers via a video conference.”

Meanwhile, Nripen Pal said: “The entire working class was looking at the honourable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to announce the revised wages. The wages declared by her were accepted by the workers. They will go back to work on Sunday."

“We are eternally grateful to the premier for fixing standard wages,” he added.

In response to a question, Nripen said that some want to incite ordinary tea workers to protest to disrupt the harmony.

Besides, President of the Kalighat Panchayet Committee Avan Tanti thanked the prime minister for the increased wage of tea workers.

The workers of the country’s 167 tea plantations, including 92 in Moulvibazar, continued their indefinite strike for the 18th day until Saturday demanding that they are paid Tk300-a-day wages instead of the current Tk120.

The movement started on August 9, when workers from 241 tea gardens of the country abstained from work for two hours, demanding Tk300 as daily wages. As their demand was not met, they decided to go on a full-scale strike from August 13.