More than 100 wounded in workers-police clash near Dhaka

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Dhaka, Apr 12 (UNI) More than 100 hundred people were injured today during a fierce clash between police and garment workers over higher wages in Industrial town of Narayanganj, about 30 km from here.

The clash that lasted for nearly three hours also inflicted injuries to 27 policemen. Two workers were admitted to Narayanganj Hospital.

Workers claimed police opened fire leaving some of them wounded.

But, Police officer Sidgatullah denied firing. He said police showed utmost tolerance in the face of hundreds of agitating workers raining brickbats and stones on them.

The situation turned so violenet that army and Rapid Action Batallion (RAB) rushed to the spot at about 1230 hrs (local time).

However, the demonstrators melted away at the presence of army, eye witnesses said.

Garment workers leader Ismail said low paid workers of Liberty Garments Factory at Fatullah took to the streets demanding wage hike. They were joined by workers of adjoining factories.

The violence in the country's garment industry over pay rise has become a common phenomenon.

The government announced minimum pay of Taka 16.50 for a garment worker but garment owners have not implemented the minium wage at all factories.

Around 22 lakh garment workers, 85 per cent of whom are women, are working in this potential sector that fetches more than eight billion dollar from exports annually.


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