Payment to closed jute mills workers begins Tuesday

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The government will begin to pay the workers of closed state-owned jute mills through paying golden handshake benefits to the workers of Karim Jute Mills at Demra in Dhaka on Tuesday.

Bangladesh Jute Mills Corporation chairman Abdur Rauf told New Age on Sunday that 1,769 workers of Karim Jute Mills would get their golden handshake benefits and 612 other workers who retired from the mill earlier would get their dues on the day.

He said that Tk 114 crore would be spent for this and the money would be transferred to the workers’ bank accounts.

Cheques of golden handshake benefit will be handed over to 30 workers at a programme on Karim Jute Mills premises, he said.

Textiles and jute minister Golam Dastagir Gazi will hand over the cheques in presence the of state minister for labour affairs Begum Monnujan Sufian, he said

The government on July 2 announced the closure of 25 jute mills operated under the state-owned BJMC since 1972, rendering over 50,000 workers jobless overnight.

Almost half of the workers were irregular ones and would get no benefit, said the sector leaders.

On Sunday afternoon, politicians, jute mill workers and civil society leaders at a demonstration in Khulna city urged the government to reopen the closed jute mills as soon as possible.

Patkol Rokkha Sammilita Nagorik Parishad organized the rally at Peoples Gol Chattar at Khalishpur industrial belt in Khulna city.

The protesters said that the government closed the mills on excuse of losses but the losses were caused by corruption of a section of officials of the jute ministry and wrong policy in operating the mills.

Presided over by the parishad convener lawyer Khudrat-e-Khuda, the rally was addressed by Ganosamhati Andolan chief coordinator Zonayed Saki, Communist Party of Bangladesh central leader Sazzad Zahir Chandan, lawyer AFM Mohsin, Socialist Party of Bangladesh central leader Razequzzaman Ratan, United Communist League general secretary Mosharrof Hossain Nannu and Workers’ Party (Marxist) general secretary Iqbal Kabir Zahid, among others.

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