Is it really all about the class struggle between oppressed workers and the blood sucking garments/textile factory owners? May be. Most likely. Then shouldn’t we all, who talk and work for the oppressed, support all what is being done by the workers in Bangladesh today?
But I am really having trouble loooking at the events in plane black and white and take the right side i.e the side of the workers and start supporting all the anarchy that is happening in Bangladesh right now.
Don’t get me wrong. I have no sympathy for the garments factory owners or current government. Garments and it’s subsidiary industry has the highest rich and poor gap in Bangladesh. Time and again I have seen what a lavish life the garments buusinessmen’s children lead around the private universities in Bangladesh. You, with your western wage, go to Helvetia and can afford to have a chicken brost once a while. This kids do it daily, hours after hours a day while indulging in Tk 5000 an hour pool game. And I have no doubt the money for this chicken brost and Tk 5000 an hour pool game comes from exploiting those poor teenage boys and girls working behind the locked collapsible gates.
But what good it brings to the nation when bands of hooligans go in rampage, start burning industries that come in front of them. These industries are backbone of the nation.
Today, about 500 garments factories around Dhaka are closed. They are closed for an indefinite period. What will be the immdediate implication?
Those poor daily paid workers will have no income for days. Who will feed the famly?
Factories will miss shipment datelines. They will definitely loose business to competitors in China, India, Pakistan, Vietnam ,Cambodia, Mexico, Jordan, Oman, Nepal, Jamaica etc.
I know garments owners also play with the sentiment, they kind of blackmail the nation with these issues.
But other than being blackmailed by these businessmen, what option this nation has?
Like all of you, I also can write emotional or factual stories on garments horror. But what purpose it will serve?
Should we support the anarchy of burning all the compliant units, all the showcase better workplace units or the joint venture units in EPZs?
I see the media in Bangladesh has taken a middle of the road aproach in this event. Lets follow that lead. First let the anarchy stop.
Then keep vigil for a follow up. Lobby, pressurize the government, regulatory agencies, owners association to ensure a minimus wage, work hour requirement. With buyer’s help, this is doable.
Please don’t burn a single more industrial unit. Bangladesh needs more industry. Can’t afford to burn whatever few we have.