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The commerce minister and state minister for labour will sit with garment leaders and factory owners this afternoon to discuss the ongoing protest by the workers.


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Senior Information Officer of the Commerce Ministry Abdul Latif Bakshi confirmed The Daily Star that Commerce Minister Tipu Munshi will hold the meeting with leaders of various groups and organizations that represent garments workers.

State Minister for labour Munnujan Sufian will be accompanying him.

The meeting will be held at the labour ministry at 4:00pm, senior officials of the labor ministry told The Daily Star.

Garments workers started protesting from Sunday (January 6) over the disparity in pay in the new wage structure.
They blocked many busy thoroughfares during their protest bringing the capital to a standstill in many places.

WHAT ARE THE WORKERS DEMANDING?

The workers have alleged that the monthly wage in the seventh grade increased to Tk 8,000 from Tk 5,300 as per the latest gazette published by the government last year. But, the salary of the workers in other grades did not increase at the same rate.

The salary hike for the entry-level workers was more than that of their senior operators, who have been working for more than seven to eight years. The new wage has been effective from December 1. Major disparity in the salary hike was noticed in the third and fourth grades as their salaries were not raised like that of entry-level workers.

In most of the grades, other than the seventh, only Tk 500 was raised in the new salary structure, whereas an entry-level workers salary had increased by Tk 2,700 at one go.

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