NETRAKONA: Thousands of male and female bidi workers staged a human chain in front of Netrakona Press Club in the district town on Thursday, demanding realisation of their five-point demands.
The programme was organized under the banner of Netrakona District Bidi Workers Union. They submitted a memorandum that contains five-point demand to the chairman of the National Board of Revenue through the Netrakona Divisional Revenue Officer.The five-point demands are withdrawal of additional price of Tk 4 imposed on bidi in the current budget, provision of work 6 days a week, withdrawal of 10 per cent advance income tax on bidi, keeping bidi as cottage industry.
Md Abdul Gafur, Netrakona District Bidi Sramik Union president also the organising secretary of Bangladesh Bidi Sramik Federation, general secretary of the Federation Abdur Rahman, joint-secretary Md Harik Hossain, Nazim Uddin, Anwar Khan, Labour League leader Ashraf Ali Khan, among others, were spoke on the occasion.
The speakers also said that in the budget for the fiscal year 2020-2021, the price of low quality cigarettes has been increased by only Tk 2 while the price of bidi has been increased by Tk 4 per packet and there has been no increase in mid-range cigarettes. So isn’t it discrimination?
Despite being a homogenous product, the price of bidi has been increased in an extremely discriminatory manner. As a result of excessive price hike, the market for fake bidis has gone up. As a result, the government is being deprived of huge amount of revenue. They have sought the attention of the Prime Minister to protect the work of the helpless workers.