Bangladesh Institute of Labour Studies-BILS organised a seminar titled “The May Day perception, the 100th Anniversary of the ILO Convention 1, and the present situation of the working hour in Bangladesh” held on May 4, 2019 at the Zahur Hossain Conference Hall of the National Press Club.
BILS Vice Chairman Alhaj Sukkur Mahamud chaired the inaugural session of the seminar while, Shibnath Roy, Inspector General of the Department of Inspection for Factories and Establishment, Shib Nath Roy attended the seminar as the chief guest. Among others, Bill Advisory Council Members Mesbahuddin Ahmed, Shahidullah Chowdhury and Naimul Ahsan Jewel, BILS Vice Chairman Anwar Hossain, Secretary General Nazrul Islam Khan, Joint Secretary General Dr Wajedul Islam Khan, Secretary Rowshan Jahan Sathi, Rajshahi University Professor Dr. Zakir Hossain, Advocate of the Supreme Court of Bangladesh AKM Nasim, Program Officer of ILO Bangladesh, Saidul Islam, Secretary General of the IndustriAll Bangladesh Council Salauddin Swapan spoke at the seminar. BILS Deputy Director Md. Yousuf Al-Mamun presented the concept paper of the seminar.
The speakers said that the ILO Convention-1 was ratified by Bangladesh, reasonable working hour, rest and leave were recognised by the Constitution of Bangladesh and eight working hour was secured by the Labor Law, but in reality these are not accepted everywhere. Informal sector is more vulnerable than formal sector, they added. In Labour Force Survey 2016-17, the issue of additional working hour has been detected, in reality it can be more, they mentioned. Referring to the issue of additional work hour in the RMG sector, the speakers said that workers are physically, mentally, and socially affected due to excessive work pressure. They said that the workers were forced to work extra hours without getting the Living Wage. Mentioning the issue of increasing punishment for violation of work hours, rest and holidays, the speakers demanded to pay Living Wages along with ensuring eight work hours, rest, and holidays for all workers.