Readymade garment (RMG) workers have returned to the streets in the capital's Mirpur area on Sunday morning, to press home their demand for a wage hike.

Hundreds of workers blocked main roads at Pallabi, Mirpur-10, and 13 at 8:00 am and staged demonstrations there.

They expressed disapproval of the recently announced minimum wage as it did not meet their demand. Adding more to the woes, they encountered a disproportionate wage increment after joining work on Saturday.

The workers alleged that the owners did not implement the 56 per cent wage hike. Only experienced workers received increments ranging from 20 to 30 per cent, prompting them to take to the streets again.

Farukul Alam, officer-in-charge of Kafrul police station, said the workers initially took positions at Mirpur-13 and blocked the road around 8:00 am, but later moved towards Mirpur-10.

At 9:30 am, they were staying at the Mirpur-10 intersection, while some other workers were demonstrating at Pallabi.

The authorities raised the minimum wage from Tk 8,000 to Tk 12,500, in the face of a widespread protest. But the workers rejected the wage scale and continued their protest for a minimum wage of Tk 23,000. 

Against such a backdrop, at least 130 RMG factories have suspended operation in Savar and Dhamrai areas of Dhaka.

The Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) has indicated that the factories may remain closed until the situation improves. 

Some three workers have died during the ongoing protest for the last couple of weeks. On the other hand, a total of 22 cases have been filed accusing around 16,000 anonymous workers, on charges of vandalism in Gazipur.