Industry insiders say, over 300 factories have not paid wages for June while workers of over 850 factories are yet to get Eid bonuses
Several export-oriented readymade garments (RMG) and textile factories have yet to pay the wages and bonuses to workers although Eid-ul-Azha is right around the corner.
But labour leaders are not worried as they think that most of the factories will be able to pay the wages, bonuses, and other allowances within the stipulated time.
According to industry insiders, more than 300 factories have not paid their wages for the month of June and more than 850 garment and textile factory workers have not received Eid bonuses yet.
This number was even higher until Thursday, but many factory owners paid the wages, bonuses, and allowances on Saturday and Sunday. This will continue until the last working day, said the labour leaders.
They will keep a watchful eye on the situation till the last day and will take further steps, if necessary, the leaders said.
RMG factories with compliance or improved working environment pay their wages and bonuses on time but the workers of small, medium, and sub-contracting factories face problems during Eid, they added.
Babul Akhtar, chairman of Bangladesh Garment and Industrial Workers Federation (BGIWF), said some factories have not paid wages and bonuses to their workers yet, although the provision for payment is within the 10th day of the month.
“But every day, several factories are paying wages and bonuses. More than 80% of the factories have already paid wages. Hopefully, all the factories will complete the payment,” he added.
The deadline for payment of wages, bonuses, and allowance needs to be fixed at four or five days before Eid, he said.
Shahidullah Azim, vice-president of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) said that about 90% of the factories had paid June wages and festival bonuses as of Sunday.
“Only a few factories of our organization may have problems with the wages and bonuses. We have kept them under surveillance. Bonuses for only a few factories are left to pay and hopefully they will pay it by Monday,” he added.
In a separate incident, officers and staff of Style Craft garments factory demonstrated on the Dhaka-Joydevpur Road on July 13 demanding three months’ salaries and other dues pending for the last three years.
The workers and staff of the garment factory in Laxmipura area of Gazipur have been demanding their dues for the last eight months and have protested in front of the factory several times.
An official of BGMEA said that usually, wages and bonus-related problems do not occur in improved or compliance factories. Most small and subcontracted factories have problems with wages and bonuses.
“Most of these factories are not affiliated with the garment factory owners' association or the workers' unions. That is why it is difficult to take action against them. Moreover, our 10 monitoring teams are monitoring the issue of wages and bonuses,” he added.
Earlier, State Minister for Labour and Employment Begum Monnujan Sufian on July 13 urged the factory owners to pay all the dues including salaries and Eid bonuses of their workers within July 19.
She made the statement while addressing a meeting of the Tripartite Consultative Council (TCC) on RMG.