No mayhem, maintain cordial relations: PM to employers, workers

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Desk Report:

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday urged both employers and workers to maintain cordial relations among them avoiding any mayhem in their workplaces.

“I just want cordial relations to prevail between owners and workers,” she said while addressing a programme arranged by Labour and Employment Ministry at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre here marking the historic May Day.

The Prime Minister asked the workers not to engage in any anarchy in their workplaces at the instigation by any outsider.

“Mayhems break out when one pays heed to any instigation from any outsider. I’m warning all so that such thing never happens,” she said urging them to give special attention to their workplaces so that those are not destroyed in any way as those provide them and their families their livelihoods.

Sheikh Hasina also requested the owners to be cordial with their workers as the hard work of the workers is behind their earnings and good lifestyle.

Cricising the union leaders who raise complaints before foreigners against Bangladesh, she said this is unfortunate that there are some people who pretend to be leaders of workers and complain against the country and defame it before foreigners. “They can’t understand how dangerous it is to disrepute the country abroad to gain their petty interests.”

Pointing at oversees jobseekers, she asked them not to seek help from middlemen as no one should go abroad only being allured to have a good job without knowing anything clearly.

Noting that she saw many jobseekers leading an inhumane life, Hasina said her government is taking all the necessary measures in this regard, including arrangements for online registration and setting up of union-level digital information centres.

The government is continuing its various programmes to create jobs for unemployed youths of the country. “We don’t want anyone to remain jobless.”

She said her government is working with a goal to meet the minimum demands of people. “No one will remain homeless in the country and Bangladesh will be a bagger-free country soon,” she said.

Referring to various steps taken by her government in the interest of workers, she said the Awami League government, unlike BNP, fixed the minimum wage for the readymade garment workers at Tk 1,600 assuming office in 1996. “But BNP took time to implement it until 2006. Coming to power in 2009, the Awami League increased the minimum wage at Tk 3,000 and then 5,300,” she added.

The Prime Minister said she acted as a bargaining agent for workers during the enhancement of the minimum wage.

Hasina said she is there in politics to change lot of people, not of herself. “My politics is in the interest of the exploited and common people like that of my father.”

Father of Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman had adopted the labour policy in 1972, formed the wage commission for workers and announced the May Day as a public holiday.

She said had Father of Nation Bangabandhu been alive Bangladesh would have turned into a developing country within 10 years.

Chaired by State Minister for Labour and Employment Md Mujibul Haque (Chunnu), the programme was addressed, among others, by Chairman of Parliamentary Standing Committee on Labour and Employment Monnuzan Sufian MP, President of Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) Siddiqur Rahman, ILO representative Gagon Rajbhandari, President of Jatiya Sramik League Sukur Mahmud and President of Bangladesh Employers Federation Kamran T Rahman.

Labour and Employment Secretary Afroza Khan delivered the welcome address.

At the programme, the Prime Minister handed over financial assistance to two ailing workers, families of four workers killed in accidents, and four meritorious children of workers.unb

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