Bangladesh Factory Fire: Garment Workers Torch Factory, Demanding Better Pay

July 31, 2013 Updated: July 18, 2015

Hundreds of garment workers north of Dhaka set fire to a factory on Wednesday, protesting bonuses they say aren’t near high enough.

“The workers angrily protested at the amount of bonus they got from the owners for the upcoming Eid al-Fitr festival,” local police chief Omar Faruq said. “At one stage they walked out of the factory and set the godown (warehouse), which was on the ground floor of the factory, on fire,”

The fire highlights the latest protest against poor working conditions and pay in Bangladesh, where the death toll from one factory collapsing in April was 1,127.

Eid al-Fitr is the country’s main Muslim festival, marking the end of the holy month of Ramadan. About 90 percent of Bangladesh’s 153 million people are Muslims, according to AFP

Local media reports indicated that some factory owners and managers have told their workers they might not be able to pay them on time because of shipment delays and buyers not paying for goods purchased.

The firefighters controlled the blaze at the five-story Libas Textlines factory.


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