• Monday, Aug 19, 2019
  • Last Update : 01:16 am

Relatives still cry for compensation

  • Published at 09:25 pm April 24th, 2019
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Aleya Begum offers floral wreaths at Jurain graveyard on Wednesday, April 24, 2019 Dhaka Tribune

Hundreds of garment workers joined the program and called for social security insurance to ensure compensation in case of any tragedies

Alpona Akhter, cousin of a Rana Plaza victim Rehana Akhter, who joined a human chain of readymade garment (RMG) workers in front of the Jatiya Press Club on Wednesday, vented her grievances that after so many years of the disaster they did not get the promised compensation.

Rehana was among the 1,135 garment workers killed on April 24, 2013 as the multi-storey building collapsed, leaving thousands severely injured.

Marking the sixth anniversary of the incident, Alpona, 67, has been participating in the gathering each year since the disaster, demanding punishment for culprits and compensation for victims and their families. 

"I want full compensation for my dead relative," she said.

Hundreds of garment workers joined the program and called for social security insurance to ensure compensation in case of any tragedies. 

They were joined by members of the Industrial Bangladesh Council (ICB) and other allies, who demanded that April 24 be declared a national day of mourning and requested the government to ensure workplace safety. 

Another participant in the human chain, Kamrunnessa, said her relative, victim Arifa Begum, never received compensation. 

Arifa was a maintenance worker on the building’s seventh floor when it collapsed. She broke her neck and never recovered fully. 

"She suffers from amnesia and has been unable to get another job because of her injuries," said Kamrunnessa.

Speaking to the Dhaka Tribune, ICB President Salauddin Shapon said: “This accident occurred because of some people's greed. The culprits involved cannot be forgiven under any circumstances.”

Salauddin demanded that constructive activities started by The Bangladesh Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh be seen through. 

Regional Secretary of the Industrial Global Union, Apurba Kaiyer, said: “International outrage over the Rana Plaza and Tazreen disasters prompted creation of Accord—a legally binding agreement in which nearly 200 corporate clothing brands pay for garment factory inspections. 

"Since then, dozens of garment factories have been closed for safety violations,” he added.