Bangladeshi river transport workers' strike enters 3rd day

18:40, May 10, 2010      

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The countrywide indefinite water transport strike in Bangladesh enforced by a federation of river vessel workers, demanding better wages and removal of anomalies in the wage structure, entered its third day on Monday, disrupting river vessel movement.

The federation started the strike since early Saturday after rejecting the new wage structure announced by the government for the country's about 150,000 water transport workers.

According to the new pay structure, the wages of workers will be raised by 50 to 100 percent, making the minimum salary of a worker 2,850 taka (about 41 U.S dollars) in stead of 5,000 taka ( about 71 U.S. dollars) the workers had demanded earlier.

The river transport workers also went on a strike on March 15 this year, which prompted the government to form a committee to fix up the wage structure and the workers withdrew the indefinite strike on March 18 following a tripartite meeting of the workers, owners and the government.

Nearly 20,000 major ferries ply across Bangladesh, criss- crossed by around 250 rivers, and transport over 100,000 passengers per day.



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