24 April 2013 THE RANA PLAZA BUILDING COLLAPSE Part 6 20150324- now

* 24 April 2013 THE RANA PLAZA BUILDING COLLAPSE Part 1 20130424 – 20130523

* 24 April 2013 THE RANA PLAZA BUILDING COLLAPSE Part 2 20130524 – 20131109

* 24 April 2013 THE RANA PLAZA BUILDING COLLAPSE Part 3 20131109- 20140313

* 24 April 2013 THE RANA PLAZA BUILDING COLLAPSE Part 4 20140314- 20140428

* * 24 April 2013 THE RANA PLAZA BUILDING COLLAPSE Part 5 20140502- 20150319

PART 6:

tbv RanaPlaza
20150709

* Court orders arrest of six fugitives over Rana Plaza building construction:

A Dhaka court has admitted charges in a case over illegal construction of Rana Plaza building at Savar and issued arrest warrant for six people running from the law.

The court on Wednesday did not, however, accept the charge-sheet in the murder case filed over the incident since four government officials have been named.

Law requires government clearance for initiation of legal proceedings against public servants of certain categories.

Dhaka’s Senior Judicial Magistrate Shahinur Rahman set Aug 18 to take cognisance of the charge-sheet, subject to approval by the authorities.

Criminal Investigation Department (CID) Assistant Superintendent Bijay Krishna Kar on June 1 pressed charges in the court of Dhaka’s Chief Judicial Magistrate in the two cases.
read more.
bdnews24

* Arrest warrants against Rana’s mother, five others:

A Dhaka court yesterday issued a warrant for the arrest of six people, including Rana Plaza owner Sohel Rana’s mother, in a case filed for violating building code in connection with the factory collapse incident.

Dhaka’s Senior Judicial Magistrate Md Shahinoor Rahman passed the order after accepting the charge sheet against 18 people including Sohel Rana. The court also asked the Savar police to submit a report before it by August 18.

The wanted accused are Rana’s mother Marjina Begum; and Savar municipality’s Chief Executive Officer Uttam Kumer Roy, former engineer Mahbubur Rahman, Urban Planner Farzana Islam; and Md Mahbubul Alam and Nantu Contractor.
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DHAKATRIBUNE

20150709 * Court accepts charges against owner, 17 others:

A Dhaka court yesterday took cognisance of the charge against Rana Plaza owner Sohel Rana, his father Abdul Khaleque and 16 others in one of the two cases filed over the collapse of the nine-storey building that left 1,136 people dead.

The court issued a warrant for arrest of Rana’s mother Marzina Begum and five others as they have been absconding since the case was filed on April 24, 2013.  Sohel Rana is in jail while his father is out on bail.

They were charged with violation of building codes when constructing the building that housed several garment factories.

The court also asked Savar police to submit the report on execution of the order by August 18.

The court fixed the same date to decide whether it would accept charges against Rana and 40 others in another case filed over the killings.

The court also asked the labour and housing and public works ministries for permission, by August 18, to include four government officials in the charge sheet in the kiling case.
to read .
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* Sohel Rana, parents, 16 others indicted:

A court in Dhaka on Wednesday indicted 18 people, including building owner Sohel Rana, his parents, five government officials and two elected representatives, for breaching building construction law, which led to the Rana Plaza disaster.

The senior judicial magistrate, Md Shahinur Rahman, asked the authorities to arrest six of 18 accused for not appearing in the court.

The senior judicial magistrate also asked two ministries — the LGRD and Co-operatives, and Labour — to issue approvals to charge four government officials in another case filed for homicide and criminal conspiracy.

The judicial magistrate set August 18 for the next hearing over the government approval in the murder case, while it would also hear on the implementation of the arrest order.

In the case filed under Building Construction Act , the court issued arrest warrants against Rana Plaza owner Sohel Rana’s mother Marjina Begum, the then Savar municipality’s chief executive officer Uttam Kumar Roy, the then Savar municipality’s engineer Mahbubur Rahman and its urban planner Farzana
Islam, businessman Md Mahbubul Alam, Rezaul Islam and Nantu Contractor.

The two accused are now in jail while the remaining 10 are now out on bail in the case.
The court on the day also did not accept the charge sheet in the murder case, in response to an application filed by the prosecution.

Twenty-four accused are absconding while four, including Sohel Rana, are now in jail and 13 accused are out of jail on bail in the case.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150708

* Court accepts chargesheet under BNBC:

A Dhaka court on Wednesday took the chargesheet of a case under the Bangladesh National Building Code (BNBC) for Rana Plaza collapse.

Senior Judicial Magistrate of Shahinur Rahman passed the order after holding a hearing earlier in the day.

The court also fixed August 18 as the date for hearing on acceptability of another chargesheet of murder case in the same incident.

Besides, the court issued arrest warrants against six accused who are currently fugitives.

On June 1, IO (investigation officer) of two cases of Rana Plaza collapse incident senior ASP of Criminal Investigation Department (CID) Bijoy Krishna Dhar submitted two chargesheets under BNBC and murder act.

A total of 42, including parents of Rana Plaza owner Sohel Rana, were made accused in the two chargesheets.
read more. & read more. & read more.
banglanews24NEW FE bd prothom

* Arrest warrant against Rana’s mother, 5 others:

A Dhaka court has issued arrest warrant against six people, including Rana Plaza owner Sohel Rana’s mother, in a case filed under the Building Construction Act.

Dhaka Session Judicial Magistrate Mohammad Shahin Rahman passed the order on Wednesday afternoon, accepting the charge sheet in the case.

Sohel’s mother Morzena Begum, former chief executive officer of Savar municipality Uttom Kumar Rai, former engineer Mahbubur Rahman and three others have been named in the warrant.

The court fixed August 18 for the submission of the execution report of the arrest warrant.

The court did not accept the charge sheet submission regarding the murder case filed over the incident of Rana Plaza collapse as the names of four accused were not included in it.

The names were not included in the charge sheet as the ministry concerned did not give permission to include the names of the accused government officials in the charge sheet.

The court also ordered the ministry concerned to give the permission to include the names of the accused government officials in the charge sheet.
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DHAKATRIBUNE NEWAGEnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150707

* Textile industry certificates more for show than safety:

BSCI complaint on TÜV Rheinland’s audit report for Rana Plaza manufacturer

Certificates attesting to safety and working conditions in the textile industry are good for a corporation’s image but are of little use to those working in global production and supply chains.

This was made all too clear by the collapse of the Rana Plaza factory complex in Dhaka, Bangladesh, which killed more than 1,130 people. German technical inspection company TÜV Rheinland audited the Phantom Apparel Ltd. production facilities just a few months before the catastrophe.

The German certification company failed to address building safety and construction flaws and a number of other problems were not raised in its report.

TÜV Rheinland was appointed as auditor by a member of the Business Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI).
The BSCI is a corporate platform based in part on the standards of the International Labor Organization (ILO) and is supposed to monitor and improve safety and working conditions in production countries.

The European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights (ECCHR), FEMNET and the Clean Clothes Campaign (CCC), medico international and the Activist Anthropologist Collective from Bangladesh have submitted a joint complaint to the BSCI.
The organizations are calling on the BSCI to disclose the audit contract as well as the reports on Rana Plaza by TÜV Rheinland and others and to overhaul the approach of inspection reports.

“The certificates don’t tell us much. Consumers need to know exactly what is monitored,” says Miriam Saage-Maaß, head of the Business and Human Rights program at ECCHR.
“But above all: we need to be able to hold the certification companies and the bodies that commission them liable for their actions.”

To date none of the companies involved have taken legal responsibility for the Rana Plaza catastrophe.
“When disasters happen in the textile industry, producers, buyers and traders like to hide behind certificates of safety and working standards to dodge responsibility,” says Gisela Burkhardt, chairperson of FEMNET, a member of CCC.
read more.german report.
sauber

tbv RanaPlaza
20150701

* Case filed against BD, three buyers:

Compensation for Rana Plaza victims

A civil case was lodged in the United States of America (USA) against Bangladesh and three apparel buyers to get compensation for Rana Plaza victims and remedy for further incidents, officials said.

One Abdur Habibur Rahman filed the case with the district court in the District of Columbia, USA.
He filed the case in favour of Rana Plaza victims Sharifa Begum (deceased) and Mahamudul Hasan Hridoy (injured) on April 23 last.

The case was filed under “the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005, 20 U.S.C and 1332 (d) (2); and rule 23 of the Federal Rule of Civil procedure.”

Defendants of the case are: the government of Bangladesh, JesiPenny Corporation, Inc, the Children Place and Wal-Mart stores, Inc.

“Lack of basic standards for workplace healthy and safety (and failure of the Bangladesh government and western buyers and to audit and enforce the minimal standards that do exists), workers at garment factories in Bangladesh are subjected to a number of systematic human rights violations, including harassment and other abuse,” the plaintiff said.
read more.
FE bd

* RANA PLAZA TRAGEDY : Govt asked to find out engineer who cautioned building could collapse:

The High Court on Tuesday repeated its previous directive to the government to find out engineer Fazlul Haq who had cautioned the owner a day ahead that Rana Plaza, which had developed cracks, could collapse any moment.

Only if Sohel Rana paid heed to the warning hundreds of apparel workers, mostly women, would not have to die in Rana Plaza collapse on the very next day, April 24, 2013, said the court.

A bench of Justice Mirza Hussain Haider and Justice AKM Zahirul Haque asked deputy attorney general Al-Amin Sarker, who appeared for the government, to search for Fazlul Haq at the Institution of Engineers Bangladesh which enrolls engineers wherever they were posted.

After initial silence, the deputy attorney general feebly said that there was no trace of the engineer.
The bench reiterated that it was keen to hear the account from Fazlul Haq, as media reported that he had sounded the warning during spot inspection of Rana Plaza after it had developed cracks.
(…)
The court said it would examine whether anyone of the respondents had neglected their duty and what action was taken against the duty dodgers.
The court asked the authorities to take punitive action against the duty dodgers if no action had been taken against them.

The court said it would also examine whether the victims of the Rana Plaza disaster had been duly paid their compensations.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150629

* RANA PLAZA DISASTER : Police, jail authorities trade blame over not producing Rana in court:

Police and jail authorities blamed each other as a judicial magistrate’s court in Dhaka on Sunday raised question why prime accused, Sohel Rana, was not produced in the dock for a hearing on two charge sheets filed against him and 41 others.

The senior judicial magistrate, Shahinur Rahman, also deferred until July 8 the hearing on the acceptability of the charge sheets in Rana Plaza disaster cases because of absence of the prime accused, causing further delay in the pre-trial phase of the cases.

June 28 was scheduled for hearing in the acceptability of the charge sheets, the Criminal Investigation Department had submitted on June 1 to the Chief Judicial Magistrate’s Court, relating to Rana Plaza collapse that had killed 1,137 people on April 24, 2013.

The charge sheets accused Shohel Rana and 41 people, including government officials, elected representatives and Awami League leaders for the killings in Savar.

The Chief Metropolitan Magistrate’s Court’s additional public prosecutor Anwarul Kabir Babul expressed disappointment over Rana not being produced in court and requested the court to seek explanation from the jail authorities.

The district court inspector Asaduzzaman blamed the jail authorities for the failure of not sending the prime accused to the court although the necessary documents were sent to them earlier.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

* Hearing on accepting Rana Plaza charge sheets July 8:

A Dhaka court yesterday set July 8 for a hearing on whether it would accept the charge sheets in two cases filed over the 2013 Rana Plaza collapse that killed over 1,135 people.

Dhaka Senior Judicial Magistrate Md Shahinur Rahman set the date after scrutiniying case documents.

He also issued a show-cause notice to Kashimpur Jail Super for not producing prime accused Sohel Rana, owner of the collapsed building, before the court during the hearing.
However, other accused in the cases appeared in the court.
read more.
DHAKATRIBUNE

tbv RanaPlaza
20150628

* Rana Plaza: Order on chargesheet against Sohel Rana, 41 others July 8:

A court here on Sunday fixed July 8 to deliver the order on chargesheet against 41 people, including Rana Plaza owner Sohel Rana, in two cases filed in connection with the garment factory collapse that killed 1,129 people and injured 2,515 on April 24, 2013.

Dhaka Metropolitan Magistrate Shahinur Rahman fixed the date for order after concluding the hearing on the petitions.

On June 1, over two years after the Rana Plaza tragedy, the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of police pressed charges against 42 people, including Rana Plaza owner Sohel Rana, in the two cases.

Assistant Police Super of CID Bijoy Krishna Kar submitted the chargesheets before the GRO (general recording office) concerned of the Dhaka Chief Judicial Magistrate Court in two separate cases — one filed for killing people and another for violating the building code under the Building Construction Act.

Sohel Rana’s father Abdul Khalek and mother Marjina Begum and 12 government officials were among the charge-sheeted accused.
Besides, 594 people were shown as witnesses in the killing case besides 135 in another case.
read more.
UNBnew

* Bangladesh completes factory collapse probe:

Court to decide whether to put building owners and several officials on trial for deaths of 1,200 workers in 2013.

The investigation into the deadly collapse of a garment factory in Bangladesh has been completed.

Nearly 1,200 garment workers were killed when the Rana Plaza building came crashing down in 2013.

On Sunday, the court adjourned the Rana Plaza court case until July 8 as the accused was not presented to the court.
The court is still to decide whether it will put the building owners and a number of government officials on trial.

Meanwhile, survivors recall their tragic experiences as they continue to suffer from their injuries and feel neglected.
see more video.
aljazeera

* Rana Plaza: Charge framing hearing Jul 8:

A Dhaka court today set July 8 to begin the hearings on whether charges will be framed against 42 people including Sohel Rana in two cases over Rana Plaza collapse.

The court also issued a show cause notice to Kasimpur prison superintendent on why Sohel Rana was not produced during proceedings today.
Senior Judicial Magistrate Shahinur Rahma passed the orders.

Additional Public Prosecutor Anwarul Kabir Babul appealed to the court for a show cause notice accusing negligence of the jail authorities in this regard.
read more. & read more. & read more. & read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015 DHAKATRIBUNE bdnews24 INDEPENDENT

tbv RanaPlaza
20150619-20/23

* A Rana Plaza win:

In light of a hard-won compensation scheme, Ilona Kelly looks at the human cost behind the garment industry disaster.

20150619 HEATHERSTILWELL
© Heather Stilwell

In a rare victory for workers’ rights, all those affected by the collapse of the Rana Plaza garment factory in 2013 will receive full compensation for loss of income and medical care.

The Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund – set up by the International Labour Organization in January 2014 to collect compensation for victims and their families – reached its funding target of $30 million in June, with a final, large anonymous donation.

‘This compensation will help each person to sustain their lives – enabling some to continue to send their kids to school and, at the very least, now no-one will starve,’ said Kalpona Akter, Executive Director of the Bangladesh Centre for Worker Solidarity.
(…)

Asha Khatun
Asha started working at Rana Plaza 6 months before the collapse. She worked every day from 8am until 5pm, and most days would work overtime until 9 or 10pm.

She earned around 3,000 taka ($40) a month, but with overtime she could double her earnings to around 6,500 taka ($83).
(…)

Asha was forced to start working, but soon the building started to shake. As it crumbled, Asha remembers the bodies of women falling around her and seeing the body of her dead auntie.

Then a stone fell on Asha and everything went black. Asha was the main earner for her mother, father and younger sister, and now the family is desperately struggling to get by.

Asha has received compensation for her injuries, but says it’s only been enough to cover her medical costs.
Two years after the collapse, Asha says she still can’t eat properly and she feels pain in her head and chest.
She is too weak to stand for long periods, so she no longer leaves the house. Asha says she has no hope of getting her life back.

‘I feel like I’m living like a dead person. It would have been better if I died, because now I’m a burden to my family.’
(…)

Mossamat Jomela and Mossamat Surjo
Eighteen-year-old Parvina was working on the 4th floor of the building the day Rana Plaza collapsed, but her body has never been found.

Jomela says she tried everything to find her daughter, and long after the factory collapsed she would still bring Parvina’s clothes to the site to try to match them to clothes buried in the rubble. All Jomela found was her daughter’s cell phone.

Jomela says she received 45,000 taka ($575) compensation, but was forced to move away from her home because she could no longer afford to live there.
She says she feels hopeless, but travelled the 8 hours from her new home to be at the Rana Plaza site for the 2-year anniversary and to continue the search for her daughter.

Mossamat Sharbanu
A
fter the building collapsed, Sharbanu was trapped under the rubble for 2 days. She said it was so dark that she thought she had gone blind. She sustained a head injury, lost much of the skin on her back, and still feels pain in her stomach and legs.

Sharbanu was given 45,000 taka compensation ($575), but all of the money has gone to treat her injuries. Sharbanu and her 2-year-old daughter Mohmmad Shaon (bottom right) now live off the earnings of Sharbanu’s husband Mohammad Mominul Islam (left), a rickshaw driver.
(…)

Shahana Akter
22-year-old Polly Akter (pictured right) started working at Rana Plaza when she was 18 years old because her family was struggling with debt. After the factory collapsed, Polly’s mother Shahana waited 7 days before rescuers found her daughter’s body beneath the rubble.

Shahana was given a compensation payment for her daughter’s death, but is still struggling to support herself and her 4 other daughters, one of whom was also injured in the collapse.

The two daughters’ factory work was the main source of income for the family, but Shanana says she won’t let any of her daughters work in the factories again.
(…)

Rashida Begum
Rashida Begum (right) had been working at Rana Plaza for 5 years before the factory collapsed. As the building started to fall, Rashida ran to the stairs, but couldn’t get out.

She ran to the window, but was too scared to jump because it looked like the others were falling to their death.
Rashida thinks she eventually fell out of the window, but doesn’t remember anything until she woke up in the hospital, where she stayed for 15 days.

Rashida is still haunted by what happened to her.
She says she is too scared to be alone, and when she sleeps she has nightmares that everything is caving in on her and she is drowning.
She tried to work at another factory, but her injuries prevent her from working properly, so Rashida was let go.
read more.
NEWINTERNATIONALIST

* All Rana Plaza victims to be compensated within weeks: ILO:

A fund set up to compensate the victims of the Rana plaza factory collapse has finally reached its 30-million target, the UN’s international labor organization (ILO) said this week.

With all the funding now secured, the last families still awaiting a payout will receive their money “In The Coming Weeks”, said the ILO, which chairs the Rana Plaza coordination committee.

The committee, which was established in 2013 and represents all industry stakeholders, had estimated it would need 30 million (26.5 million euros) to fully and fairly compensate the families of the over 1,100 garment workers who died and some 1,500 others who were injured in the country’s worst ever industrial accident.

By April 24, on the second anniversary of the disaster, the committee had raised 27 million and was able to pay compensation to 70 percent of the more than 2,800 claimants, the ILO said in a statement.

“Further donations, including one significant sum pledged late last week meant that 30m had now been reached and all payments can be made,” it added.
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BSSnew dailyboserverbd FE bd NEWAGEnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150611

* Final compensation to Rana Plaza victims soon:

Panel receives $30m from retailers: ILO’s Reddy

The Rana Plaza Coordination Committee will complete all payments to the victims of the nation’s worst industrial disaster in two weeks, as the panel has received the required amount — $30 million — from retailers.

“We are ready to finish paying the compensation money to the Rana Plaza victims as we have received the required $30 million,” Srinivas B Reddy, country director for International Labour Organisation (ILO) in Bangladesh, said in an interview with The Daily Star yesterday.

“We have already disbursed 70 percent of the claims to the victims through bank accounts of Dutch Bangla Bank.”

Reddy is the chairman of the committee, which was formed two years ago after the accident to settle the compensation claims, with government representatives, garment exporters, retailers and trade union leaders.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

tbv RanaPlaza
20150609

* Trust Fund meets $30m target to pay off all victims, families:

Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund has finally met its target of $30 million, required to compensate all the victims and their families of the industrial tragedy, said a statement of International Labour Organisation (ILO).

Rana Plaza Coordination Committee, representing all industry stakeholders, announced on Monday that it has raised the fund, required for ensuring full, fair and equitable payment to all victims in the coming weeks.

According to the statement, over $27 million had been raised by April 2015, and the committee had paid out 70 per cent of the awards promised to over 2,800 claimants.

Further donations, including one significant sum pledged late last week, mean that the target of $30m has been reached, and all final payments can be made now.
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FE bd  the DAILYSTAR new 2015 DHAKATRIBUNE NEWAGEnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150608

* Rana Plaza victims’ compensation scheme secures funds needed to make final payments:

ILO Director-General encouraged by milestone reached but also says that important business remains to be dealt with.

The Rana Plaza Coordination Committee announced today that it has raised all the funds required to enable the scheme to make full payments to all victims in the coming weeks.

The Committee which represents all industry stakeholders had estimated that US$30m was required to ensure that all victims can receive fair and equitable compensation according to ILO Conventions.

By April 2015, the second anniversary of the Rana Plaza accident, over $27m had been raised and the Committee had paid out 70 per cent of the awards promised to over 2800 claimants. Further donations, including one significant sum pledged late last week mean that $30m has now been reached and all final payments can be made.

ILO Director-General Guy Ryder was encouraged by the action taken by the Government of Bangladesh, the country’s employers, workers, international brands, trade unions and NGOs on the Committee to ensure that fair compensation can now be paid to all victims of this terrible tragedy.

“This is a milestone but we still have important business to deal with. We must now work together to ensure that accidents can be prevented in the future, and that a robust national employment injury insurance scheme is established so that victims of any future accidents will be swiftly and justly compensated and cared for,” he said.
read more.

* funds now available to complete payments under the Rana Plaza arrangement:

On April 24th 2013 1134 people were killed and hundreds were injured when the Rana Plaza building in Savar, Bangladesh collapsed.

The unprecedented scale of the disaster meant a coordinated, systematic approach was required to ensure the victims, their families and dependents would not have to endure ill-health and financial hardship resulting from the death of a family member or life changing injuries.

RPCC announce that sufficient funds now available to complete payments under the Rana Plaza arrangement

June 8th 2015

The Rana Plaza Coordination Committee are delighted to announce that the $30million target required in the Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund has been met, following a large anonymous donation received in the last few days. For the full amounts received and pledged see www.ranaplaza-arrangement.org/donors.

With the funding target now met the Rana Plaza Claims Administration will begin work to finalise and pay all of the Awards agreed under the Arrangement, including loss of income payments, medical care and supplementary payments, to all eligible beneficiaries.
We expect that this work should be complete and all final amounts paid to beneficiaries over the coming weeks.
We will continue to provide progress reports until the final claims are processed and awarded.

The RPCC would like to thank all those who have dedicated so much time over the last two years to help design and implement such a ground-breaking initiative. In particular we would like to thank the ILO in Geneva and Dhaka for chairing and designing the programme, the Commissioners who have overseen the practical implementation of the Arrangement, the RPCA staff, members of the Coordination Committee and all those who agreed to donate to the Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund.
read more.
RANAPLAZA arragement

* Rana Plaza victims: Final compensation payments within weeks:

The Rana Plaza Coordination Committee has announced that it has raised all the funds required to enable the scheme to make full payments to all victims in the coming weeks.

The Committee which represents all industry stakeholders had estimated that US$30m was required to ensure that all victims can receive fair and equitable compensation according to ILO Conventions, according to a message received here from Geneva.

By April 2015, the second anniversary of the RanaPlaza accident, over $27m had been raised and the Committee had paid out 70 per cent of the awards promised to over 2800 claimants.

Further donations, including one significant sum pledged late last week mean that $30m has now been reached and all final payments can be made.
read more.
UNBnew

* Rana Plaza Donors Fund meets $30m target:

The Clean Clothes Campaign, an international organisation campaigning for the garment workers’ rights, on Monday announced that the Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund has finally met its target of $30 million, following a large anonymous donation.

The CCC has been campaigning since immediately after the disaster in April 2013 asking the brands and retailers linked to Rana Plaza factories to compensate the victims.
‘Now all the families affected by the Rana Plaza collapse will receive all the money they are owed,’ said Ineke Zeldenrust of the Clean Clothes Campaign in a press release. ‘They can finally focus on rebuilding their lives. This is a remarkable moment for justice.’
read more.
NEWAGEnew

* WE WON!! Rana Plaza workers get full compensation:

The Clean Clothes Campaign (CCC) is delighted to announce a major campaign victory with the confirmation that the Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund has finally met its target of $30 million, following a large anonymous donation.

The CCC has been campaigning since the disaster in April 2013 to demand that brands and retailers provided compensation to its victims.

Since then over one million consumers from across Europe and around the world have joined actions against many of the major high street companies whose products were being made in one of the five factories housed in the structurally compromised building.
These actions forced many brands to finally pay donations and by the second anniversary the Fund was still $2.4 million dollars short of its $30million target.
A large donation received by the Fund in the last few days has now led to the Fund meeting its target.

“This day has been long in coming. Now that all the families impacted by this disaster will finally receive all the money that they are owed, they can finally focus on rebuilding their lives. This is a remarkable moment for justice, said Ineke Zeldenrust of the Clean Clothes Campaign.
“This would not have been possible without the support of citizens and consumers across Europe who stuck with the campaign over the past two years. Together we have proved once again that European consumers do care about the workers who make their clothes – and that their actions really can make a difference.”

The Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund was set up by the ILO in January 2014 to collect funds to pay awards designed to cover loss of income and medical costs suffered by the Rana Plaza victims and their families when the Rana Plaza building collapsed in the garment industry’s worst ever disaster.
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labour behind the label INDUSRIall UNIglobalUNION ILRFnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150603-04

* $1,000 for a Dead Family Member—Is That Justice for Bangladesh’s Garment Workers?:

Two years later, more than 1,100 dead, and millions of dollars in unpaid compensation. Amid the social toll of the 2013 Rana Plaza factory disaster in Bangladesh, activists can now count a modest victory in the victims’ struggle for justice.

The government this week announced 42 criminal prosecutions against clothing factory owners and officials, including the leading businessperson behind the giant compound, Sohel Rana.

They are charged with causing workers’ deaths through neglect and the regulatory failure to act on evidence of severe building hazards.
But taking stock of the lingering aftermath of the country’s worst industrial atrocity, activists now demand a different form of accountability—from both industry and the state.

“It’s outrageous that it took more than two years for these charges to be filed, particularly given the number of people who were killed and the clear evidence pointing to the fact that the death toll could have been prevented and that the collapse wasn’t simply an accident,” says Bangladeshi labor activist Kalpona Akter in an e-mail to The Nation.
(…)

Despite international outrage, global efforts to fix the labor crisis in garment factories have been hobbled by corporate and official impunity, according to the International Labor Rights Forum’s field report from Bangladesh.
Victims’ families still struggle to meet basic needs despite the millions that multinational companies have donated into a still-underfunded compensation trust.

The analysis reveals ongoing systemic problems in the industry’s low-cost export production chain, with thousands of factories paying millions of impoverished workers—mostly women—pennies an hour.

Life is still cheap in the industry. According to ILRF’s research, “The amounts of money given to workers who lost an arm or a leg or a family members was often $1000 or less.…
For a garment worker who survived on sewing or perhaps an entire family that depended on that income, getting $1000 is wholly inadequate when the worker has lost his or her ability to earn a living.”
(Even before the disaster, many victims were so desperately poor, they apparently returned to work at a compound clearly on the verge of collapse.)
(..)
Although Bangladeshi officials bowed to public pressure by raising garment-industry minimum wages and facilitating the creation of more unions, workers continue to face systematic violence.
“Very few of those unions…have been able to exercise their right to bargain collectively and several of their leaders have been brutally beaten,” the ILRF reports.
(….)

Chaumtoli Huq, an attorney researching labor issues in Bangladesh, says the prosecutions should be viewed in the context of the government’s other political troubles, including the migrant labor crisis that has left many impoverished Bangladeshis stranded at sea attempting to flee to Malaysia.

In Huq’s view, “The Government of Bangladesh’s labor record is abysmal…. In both migrant sector and garments, workers are vulnerable to abuse, and I think the timing of the action by Government now probably relates to a need to show some action.
The current government has appealed to the public on the grounds that it has improved economic conditions for the average working class citizen, but what is being consistently shown is that the government is not protecting workers from precarious employment.”
read more.
the NATION

* No more delay in Rana Plaza case trials:

The Criminal Investigation Department finally pressed charges against 41 people in the case of the Rana Plaza collapse that left at least 1,137 people dead and more than 2,000 wounded or maimed.

The investigators also pressed charges in the other case, filed in connection with the breach of the building construction code that had caused the collapse, against 18 others, 17 of whom are also named in the charge sheet of the building collapse case.

But what is worrying in the process is the inordinate delays, about two years and a month as the eight-storey building, which housed five clothing factories, a shopping mall and a bank collapsed on April 24, 2013 and the charges were pressed on Monday.

Such a delay does not only delay the dispensation of justice but can also leave the chance for influences of various sorts to creep into the process and, thus, making space for perpetrators to slip unpunished.

This, however, is expected not to happen in this case as the minister of state for home affairs, exactly a year after the incident, in April 2014 said that the police were taking time so as to submit accurate charge sheets.
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NEWAGEnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150602

* 41 face murder charge over Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh:

Killing of 1,136 People in Rana Plaza Collapse

 

More than two years after the Rana Plaza building collapse, police yesterday pressed murder charges against 41 people, including the building’s owner Sohel Rana, for their alleged roles in the country’s deadliest industrial disaster that killed over 1,100 people in April 2013.

Eighteen people were also charged for “violating building codes” in constructing the nine-storey building that housed five garment factories on its upper floors in Savar. Of them, 17 are among the 41.

Most of the dead were garment workers who toiled day and night stitching clothes for global brands.

The accused persons also include Rana’s parents, owners of four factories, mayor of Savar municipality and 14 government officials.

But the then Upazila Nirbahi Officer of Savar Md Kabir Hossain Sarder was not charged as the government did not permit the investigating officer to do so.

It took the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) 25 months to submit the charge sheet in the case that shook the world.
The delay was caused by government’s alleged dillydally in giving permission to implicate its officials and recording of statements of a large number of witnesses.
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the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* CID submits charges in Rana Plaza cases:

Investigators term Rana, factory owners, officials cold-blooded murderers

 

After more than two years of investigation, police have finally submitted charge sheets in two cases filed over the April 2013 Rana Plaza collapse – one of the deadliest industrial disasters ever – that killed over a thousand people.

The charge sheets in the cases accused 42 people including Sohel Rana, the owner of the factory building.

Investigators termed the owner of the nine-storey building and the officials of five garment factories cold blooded murderers for sending their workers in despite knowing of cracks in the building and the risks involved.

“They [owners and officials] threatened to fire them [workers] and hold back that month’s wages,” the charge sheet of the murder case reads, adding that such threats compelled the low-income workers to come to work the next day.
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DHAKATRIBUNE

* Murder charges against 41:

Accused include Sohel Rana, govt officials, factory owners, elected reps, former Savar mayor, CID finally submits charge sheets

After a long delay due to bureaucratic knots, the Criminal Investigation Department on Monday submitted the charge sheet to the Chief Judicial Magistrate Court in Dhaka accusing 41 people, including government officials, elected representatives and Awami League leaders, of ‘killing’ an estimated 1,137 people in the Rana Plaza building collapse in Savar two years ago.

‘The accused had deliberately thrown the workers into the death trap…We have only indentified the perpetrators involved in the deadly building collapse in some way or other,’ the CID’s senior assistant superintendent Bijoy Krishna Kar, also the case investigator, told New Age.

The investigator, also sought warrants for the arrest of 21 accused, including Savar municipality chief executive officer Uttam Kumar Roy and other government officials, and a factory owner Jannatul Ferdous, while dropped eight people, including the lone foreign owner and managing director Mayor David Rico of Phantom TAC from the charge.

The Chief Judicial Magistrate Court in Dhaka will hear the charges on June 28 and will check whether further investigation is required before commencing the trial.

The CID also submitted another charge sheet under Building Construction Act 1952 accusing 18 people – 17 from among the 41 named in the murder case and one Mahbub Alam – for violating the construction rules that led to the collapse of the building.
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NEWAGEnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150601

* 42 charged over Rana Plaza collapse:

Criminal Investigation Department today pressed charges against 42 people including Rana Plaza owner Sohel Rana in two cases filed over the building collapse that killed 1,135 people on April 24, 2013.

Bijoy Krishna Kar, assistant superintendent of police of CID, submitted two separate charge-sheets before the Chief Judicial Magistrate Court in Dhaka in the cases – one filed for killing the people while another for violating building code.

The ASP, also investigation officer of the cases, charged Rana and 40 others for killing and injuring 1,135 people while 18 were charged for building code violation. Of them, Names of 17 accused are common in both the cases.

A total of 594 people were shown prosecution witnesses in the case while 130 in the other case.
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tbv RanaPlaza
20150531

* Rana, others’ charge-sheets Monday:

Police are all set to submit charge-sheets against 42 people including building owner Sohel Rana Monday morning two years after the Rana Plaza tragedy that claimed 1137 lives and injured scores.

The Criminal Investigation Department of police will submit charge-sheets in two separate cases to court of the Chief Judicial Magistrate, bringing charge against some 42 people including Sohel Rana and his parents.

CID Senior Assistant Superintendent Bijoy Krishna Kar, investigation officer (IO) of the cases, told banglanews that they have successfully completed the investigation and is set to submit two charge-sheets to the court.

He also said “We have to revise some matters. So, we will submit the charge-sheets on Monday instead of Sunday.”

Charges will be brought against 41 people in a case filed under penal code. 18 people are likely to be charged in another case under the Bangladesh National Building Code.
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banglanews24NEW

* Owner of collapsed Bangladesh factory to face murder charges:

Bangladesh police said they will press murder charges on Sunday against the owner of a garment factory that collapsed and killed more than 1,100 people in 2013, the worst industrial disaster in the country’s history.

Sohel Rana, owner of the Rana Plaza factory complex on the outskirts of the capital Dhaka, was among those who were expected to be formally charged over the disaster, lead investigator Bijoy Krishna Kar said.

“We are going to press murder charges against 41 people including the owners of the building, Sohel Rana and his parents, later today,” Kar told AFP, adding that if convicted all could be sentenced to death.

“It was a mass killing. All 41 of those charged have a collective responsibility for the tragedy,” he said.

Police announced last year they were set to charge Rana, who was arrested on the western border with India as he tried to flee the country days after the April 24, 2013 factory collapse.
read more.& to read.
prothom

* Rana Plaza Garment Workers’ Union gets new committee:

The Rana Plaza Garment Workers’ Union (RPGWU), a sister organisation of Garment Workers’ Trade Union Centre, on Friday selected its new 15-member executive committee for next two years during its meeting in Savar, outside the capital.

Victim workers who survived the Rana Plaza collapse, which also killed over 1,100 people on April 24, 2013, and the families of the deceased workers formed the RPGWU on May 17, 2013, to press home their demands including compensation, and punishment for the accused.

Emdadul Islam once again was selected as the president while Nasir Uddin Sohan as the secretary.
to read.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

tbv RanaPlaza
20150527

* No more apathy towards Rana Plaza victims:

It is unfortunate that workers who survived the Rana Plaza collapse and families of the workers who died in disaster 25 months ago have had to go on demonstrations demanding compensation.

They held protests teamed up as Bangladesh Garment Workers’ Solidarity, as New Age reported on Monday, at the accident site near the Savar bus stand on the outskirts of the capital on Sunday.

They also demanded punishment of the people responsible for the worst-ever building collapse in the nation’s history which left at least 1,136 people, mostly workers, dead and many more permanently handicapped.

Soon after the disaster on April 24, 2013, various quarters at home and abroad, especially the government and the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters’ Association, made literally innumerable promises involving compensation, justice and rehabilitation of survivors.

Regrettably, however, once the public outrage and the shock that the disaster triggered died down, most of the promises proved long on rhetoric, as they did on many previous occasions.

It is pertinent to recall here that the High Court has had to come forward in the formation of a committee for the enlistment of people eligible for compensation and the setting of compensation amount.

Yet, there are still many who lost members of their families in the collapse and have to go door-to-door either for compensation or even for enlistment as successors to the deceased.
There are hardly any people who received full compensation package till date mainly because of the lack of adequate fund.
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NEWAGEnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150525

* Rana Plaza victims still cry for compensation:

The victims of the Rana Plaza collapse hold a human chain and staged a demonstration in front of the spot at Savar bus stand, in Dhaka on Sunday morning, demanding punishment for the accused and proper compensation for the victims, said a press release.

The victims of the Rana Plaza collapse hold a human chain and staged a demonstration in front of the spot at Savar bus stand, in Dhaka on Sunday morning, demanding punishment for the accused and proper compensation for the victims, said a press release.

The injured and families of dead of the Rana Plaza collapse staged the programme under the banner of Bangladesh Garment Workers’ Solidarity.

Speakers at the programme said the building collapsed 25 months ago but the victims did not get any compensation from the government yet.

They alleged that the government was wasting time for fixing the rate of compensation. Labour right activist Dipok Roy said, ‘we demand compensation for the victims according to the proposal of the expert team, who has fixed the rate by an order of the high court.’

A committee, led by Savar Cantonment general officer commanding Hasan Shahid Suhrawardy, was formed after the incident following an order of the high court and the committee submitted a report mentioning the compensation rate, Dipok said.
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NEWAGEnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150522

* Rana Plaza reports now June 28:

A Dhaka court yesterday deferred until June 28 the submission of probe reports in three cases filed over the 2013 collapse of Rana Plaza in Savar.

Dhaka Judicial Magistrate Md Shahinur Rahman set the new date after Bijoy Krishna Khar, a Criminal Investigation Department officer who is investigating the three cases, failed to submit the reports yesterday.

On April 15, the court asked the CID to submit the reports by yesterday.

On April 24, 2013, Rana Plaza, which housed five garment factories, crumbled, leaving more than 1,100 people, mostly garment workers, dead and another 2,000 injured.

One of the three cases was filed by Rajuk official Helaluddin against Rana, owner of the collapsed building, for faults found in the multi-storey structure and for constructing it with second-rate materials.

Another case was filed by police with Savar police station against Rana, his father Abdul Khalek and owners of the garment factories housed in the nine-storey building for the loss of lives.

The other case was lodged by the family of a victim with a Dhaka court.

A total of 22 people, including Rana, were arrested in connection with the cases and 14 of them, including Khalek, have been released on bail.
to read.
DHAKATRIBUNE

tbv RanaPlaza
20150521

* ACC sues Sohel Rana:

The Anti Corruption Commission on Wednesday registered a case against Sohel Rana, the owner of collapsed Rana Plaza in Savar, for allegedly accumulating wealth illegally.

ACC deputy director Mahbubur Rahman filed the case with Ramna Police Station in the capital, ACC public relations officer Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya said. On April 2, 2015, the commission sent a notice to a senior jail superintendent of Kashimpur Jail in Gazipur where Rana remained detained to convey the message to him (Rana) that the ACC asked him to submit his wealth statement to it within
ACC-stipulated time.

Although Rana is in prison now, his wife submitted an application to the ACC seeking time extension to submit the wealth report, but the commission rejected the plea and it gave approval on May 18 for lodging a non-submission case against Rana.
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NEWAGEnew

* Rana Plaza owner sued for ill-gotten wealth:

* Owns 5-storied residential building * Built 2 commercial buildings

The Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) Wednesday filed a case against owner of Rana Plaza for allegedly amassing wealth in illicit way.

ACC deputy director Mahbubur Rahman filed the case with Ramna Police Station in the city, the commission’s spokesperson Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya told the FE.

Rana hogged spotlight after the deadly factory building collapse on April 24, 2013 that killed 1,129 people and leaving around 2,515 injured.  The complex housed a number of garment units.

The commission sent a notice to a senior jail superintendent of Kashimpur Jail in Gazipur on April 2, 2015, to convey the message to Sohel Rana that the ACC asked him to submit his wealth statement to it within ACC-stipulated time.

Although Rana is in prison now, his wife submitted an application to the ACC seeking time extension to submit the wealth report, but the commission rejected the plea and gave approval on May 18 for registering a non-submission case against Rana.
read more.
FE bd

tbv RanaPlaza
20150520

* Rana sued for not reporting wealth:

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) today sued Sohel Rana, owner of the collapsed Rana Plaza, for his failure to submit wealth statement within the stipulated time.

“The case was field with Ramna Police Station following commission’s approval as he did not submit accounts of his movable and immovable property,” said ACC Deputy Director Mahbubul Alam, who filed the case.

The graft watchdog sent a notice to Rana through Kashimpur jail authorities asking him to submit his wealth report but he did not respond, the ACC official added

“Rana could seek seven days more but he neither submitted the report nor sought time,” the deputy director said.
According to law, the respondents have to submit account of their all movable and immovable property within seven days after receiving a notice.

Earlier on May 15, 2013, the ACC’s probe body investigating how Sohel Rana amassed his wealth submitted its report recommending the commission asks for Rana’s and his father’s wealth statements.
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the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* ACC sues Rana Plaza owner on charge of accumulating illegal wealth:

The Anti Corruption Commission on Wednesday registered a case against Sohel Rana, the owner of Rana Plaza, for allegedly accumulating wealth illegally.

ACC deputy director Mahbubur Rahman filed the case with Ramna Police Station in the capital, ACC public relations officer Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya said, reports United News of Bangladesh.

On April 2, 2015, the Commission sent a notice to a senior jail superintendent of Kashimpur Jail in Gazipur where Rana remained detained to convey the message to him (Rana) that the ACC asked him to
submit his wealth statement to it within ACC-stipulated time.

Although Rana is in prison now, his wife submitted an application to the ACC seeking time extension to submit the wealth report, but the Commission rejected the plea and it gave approval on May 18 for lodging a non-submission case against Rana.
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20150430-0501

* Loblaw hit with $2b lawsuit over Rana Plaza collapse:

A Toronto law firm is seeking $2 billion in damages from Loblaw Companies and its Joe Fresh clothing line in a proposed class action lawsuit related to the Rana Plaza building collapse that killed more than 1,100 workers in 2013, reports Financial Post.

Filed two days before the two-year anniversary of the Rana Plaza catastrophe, the April 22 notice of action filing came a day before a similar action was filed in the District of Columbia court against retailers including Walmart, The Children’s Place and JC Penney, the Toronto-based newspaper says. These retailers were among the 29 manufacturers who had clothing made in the building.

“It was known to [the defendants] prior to April 24, 2013, that Bangladesh factories had an extremely poor record of workplace safety standards and industrial building standards including garment factories, that there had been a recent history of very serious accidents and collapses at garment factories in Bangladesh in the period immediately preceding the collapse at Rana Plaza,” says the statement of claim filed in Ontario Superior Court by plaintiff law firm Rochon Genova LLP.

The notice of action also names Loblaw’s parent company George Weston Ltd, wholly owned Loblaw subsidiary Joe Fresh Apparel Inc, and the US, France and Bangladesh branches of Bureau Veritas Consumer Products Services Inc, a company hired by Loblaw to perform inspections and audits of textile and garment factories.

“We believe that this claim is without merit and intend to vigorously defend our position,” Loblaw spokesman Kevin Groh said in an emailed statement. “We hope this claim does not distract from the positive work Loblaw has done and continues to do in respect of this tragedy,” the newspaper quoted Groh as saying.

Loblaw has directed $5 million to voluntary relief efforts related to Rana Plaza, Groh added. “We hope this claim does not discourage others from making similar contributions.”
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* Class action suit seeks $2 billion from Loblaw, Joe Fresh over 2013 Bangladesh garment factory collapse:

A Toronto law firm is seeking $2 billion in damages from Loblaw Cos. and its Joe Fresh clothing line in a proposed class action lawsuit related to the 2013 Bangladesh garment factory collapse that killed more than 1,100 workers.

Filed two days before the two-year anniversary of the Rana Plaza catastrophe, the April 22 notice of action filing came a day before a similar action was filed in the District of Columbia court against retailers including Walmart, The Children’s Place and J.C. Penney, which were among the 29 manufacturers who had clothing made in the building.
read more.
financialpost

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20150428-29

* Rana Plaza victims sue retailers, government in US court:

Wal-Mart, JC Penney, The Children’s Place and the government of Bangladesh have been sued by the victims and the families of the victims of the Rana Plaza collapse.

The lawsuit, filed in the federal court in Washington, claims the retailers and the government were aware of the unsafe working conditions.

When the eight-story building collapsed on April 24 two years ago, over 1,100 people were killed and about 2,515 people were injured.
“Defendants knew, or with the exercise of reasonable diligence, should have known, that the Rana Plaza facility was not safe for human habitation,” said the lawsuit filed with the US District Court for the District of Columbia on Thursday.

The Bangladesh government breached its duty to its citizens by failing to properly inspect the building, failing to ensure compliance with local construction standards and failing to ensure the safety of factory workers, the lawsuit states.

Retail defendants breached their duty to workers in the building by failing to implement standards and oversight mechanisms designed to ensure the health and safety of workers who manufactured clothing for their stores, it added. According to the complaint, the retailers profit from the system of sourcing through subcontractors.
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tbv RanaPlaza
20150427

* RMG owners urged to help Rana Plaza victims’ children:

Speakers at a programme in the district have slammed the ready-made garment owners for not playing due role for the sake of the children who lost their father or mother in the Rana Plaza disaster that claimed 1,135 lives on April 24, 2013.

The participants made the statement in an event titled “Sishu Conference” hosted by Sishu Palli Plus at Tengra village in Sreepur upazila yesterday, where the children who are being benefited from the organisation were present as well.

Speaker Md Saifur Rahman, Sreepur social welfare officer, said whereas the country’s RMG owners, who have become rich by dint of the labour of the workers, have remained indifferent to the suffering of the children, in this regard many foreigners including British national Rob Jenkinson have come forward with their helping hands.
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DHAKATRIBUNE

tbv RanaPlaza
20150426

* Retailers among Wal-Mart sued in US court:

Two years after Rana Plaza collapse in Savar, outskirts of Dhaka that killed more than 1,100 people and injured about 2,500, the victims’ families filed a lawsuit in US federal court in Washington Friday against Wal-Mart Stores Inc and other U.S.-based companies that sourced out their products from the Rana factory.

The plaintiffs claim that the retailers knew “that Bangladesh factories had an extremely poor record of workplace safety standards and industrial building standards, including garment factories.”

The Rana Plaza, a factory where cheap clothing was produced for big Western companies, was reduced to slabs of concrete not because of an earthquake or a terror attack, but due to poor construction and lack of oversight.

Therefore, many rights groups believe that the companies that used the factory for their supplies were responsible for the tragedy. The plaintiffs allege that the Bangladeshi government and the global retail companies that did business in the factory were both responsible for the collapse of the building.
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* Victims’ struggle on to rebuild life:

a day that the survivors of Rana Plaza collapse find too difficult to forget as the day turned their world upside down.

The horrifying memories of the building collapse still haunt them. They are now passing their days in misery and hardship.

Many survivors are still struggling to rebuild their lives as they are not given the financial support they were promised. Many received financial assistance from the government, NGOs, charities and social organisations, which turned out to be inadequate to run the families.

Halima Begum was a sewing machine operator at New Wear Style on the seventh floor of Rana Plaza. She was working on the floor when the building caved in on the fateful day. She survived, but her right leg and left hand were fractured.

Halima’s life is full of struggle and pain.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* Rana Plaza Donor Trust Fund receives commitments for $3 million more:

The Rana Plaza Claims Administration on Saturday hoped that the remaining compensation amount will be paid to the Rana Plaza survivors and the families of victims, as early as possible, as the Donor Trust Fund received commitments for another $3 million in contributions.

With the new pledge of $3 million, the current total of the fund stands at $ 27.3 million, according to the Rana Plaza Claims Administration.

Out of $27.3 million, Donors Trust Fund have so far received $14 million from brands, direct payments to beneficiaries under the coordinated scheme at $ 8.78 million, and funds committed in written pledges but not yet received at $ 4.56 million, according to the Rana Plaza Claims Administration.

In a press briefing, the executive commissioner of the Rana Plaza Claims Administration Mojtaba Kazazi said that as of April 24, 2015, the claims administration has made a total of $9.85 million payments to injured workers, dependants of the deceased and missing workers of four garments factories housed in Rana Plaza, except New Wave Bottoms.
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* Rana Plaza victims paid 70% of Tk 1.26b compensation funds:

Trust Fund seeks $3.0m more in aid

Victims of the Rana Plaza collapse have been paid 70 per cent of the $16.4 million or Tk 1.26 billion aid funds while the Trust Fund seeks $3.0 million more to dole out.

A spokesman said Saturday the total amount the Rana Plaza Trust Fund stood at $27 million, including the payments received from the Prime Minister’s Office and foreign retailer Primark.

The amount is inclusive of a latest commitment of $3 million in contribution to the fund.

However, he said, there is still a shortage of $3.0 million from the estimated requirement of $30 million to compensate the victims and their families.

“Good news is that we have got commitment of getting more $3.0 million,” Executive Commissioner of the Rana Plaza Claims Administration (RPCA) Dr Mojtaba Kazazi said, without naming the contributors.
read more.
FE bd

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20150425

* LEST WE FORGET:

Rana Plaza after two years

Rana Plaza collapsed on the morning of a hot summer day, on April 24, 2013. Officially, 1100 workers died but the true total is much higher, probably closer to 1400 or 1500.

The difference is on account of the ‘missing’ workers, of the bodies never found or those that lacked documentation as workers.
Around 1300 workers died immediately or soon after rescue.
While rescue operations continued till May 11, three quarters of the survivors rescued were found in the first two days.

Ninety percent of bodies recovered, after their identities were established, were handed over to their families for the last rites. Unidentified bodies were taken care of by the state.
The rescue operators, the government and police soon lost interest in searching further for bodies.

After May, systematic efforts to explore the site for human remains were discontinued.
There were attempts to bulldoze the site, to erase all memory of the crime scene as quickly as possible.
While officially endorsed forensic processes were short-lived, street urchins and garbage collectors continued to find evidence of the unfound – skulls and other human remains – at the site for many months on.

The Rana Plaza saga is not over, however!
This second anniversary is a occasion to remember those who lost their lives, to raise the question of the ‘missing’, to ensure the rights of the survivors , and to think hard about the crying need for reforms.
read & see more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* Garment industry’s struggle not over yet two years after Rana Plaza tragedy:

RMG industry sees some good initiatives for workers’ safety, but not enough

As the dawn breaks, shanties surrounding the garment factories on the outskirts of the capital wake up.

Within an hour or so, footpaths and streets swarm with young female workers marching towards their factories.

To many the sector is a symbol of pride and hope.
Sadly to some others, it is a symbol of disgrace and source of despair.

Pride because the sector brings home $25 billion in export earnings and employs 44 lakh poor people on top of giving a solid boost to women’s empowerment.

Disgrace because its poor safety measures and working conditions, aimed at exploiting abundant cheap labour, have led to repeated deaths inside factories violating workers’ basic rights.
The collapse of Rana Plaza, which claimed lives of 1,134 garment workers on April 24 two years ago, bears testimony to this.

Trade unions have termed the Rana Plaza disaster “mass industrial killing” for forcing workers to work in the faulty building where a crack was noticed the day before.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* Union leaders demand proper compensation:

Several RMG trade union leaders yesterday urged the government, buyers and garment owners to ensure proper compensation to the survivors and family members of the deceased in the Rana Plaza collapse.

They also demanded forming a fund with contribution from the government, buyers and the owners to bear the educational expenses of victims’ children.

The union leaders made the call at separate rallies and human chains, formed by several Ready-Made Garments (RMG) federations to observe the second anniversary of the Rana Plaza collapse yesterday in front of the National Press Club.

National Garment Workers’ Federation President Amirul Haque Amin demanded formation of a fund to bear the educational expenses of the victims’ children as they lost their parents.
He also urged the government, garment owners and buyers to take necessary measures to rehabilitate and provide treatment facilities to the survivors.

Bangladesh Textile-Garment Workers’ Federation urged the government to take effective measures to ensure compensation and demanded punishment of culprits responsible for the disaster. It also urged to set a compensation standard.

“Sohel Rana, owner of the Rana Plaza building, did not get punishment even after two years of the building collapse, rather he is staying in jail in luxury,” said Hazera Sultana, Member of Parliament, who took part in the rally.
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DHAKATRIBUNE

* Victim families yet to forgive, forget the pains two years after Rana Plaza tragedy:

Anjuara Begum made her way through a crowd with small steps towards the piles of the debris-strewn disaster site in Savar.
She stopped before a pool of rainwater accumulated in a pit.

Kneeling down, she dipped one of her fists in the greenish water and touched her face with the wet palm. Anjuara mumbled; her eyes brimmed with tears. Her cry soon turned into howl as a woman tried to take her away from the edge of water.

“Here, here my son Hridoy has died… bury me here. My son, my jewel is around here,” she cried, holding tightly a piece of concrete rubble.

Like Anjuara, family members and relatives of Rana Plaza victims shed tears as they gathered the disaster site yesterday with photographs and related documents of their loved ones.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* Rana Plaza collapse 2nd anniversary commemorated with pains:

Demonstrations staged in Bangladesh and elsewhere in world commemorating the second anniversary of Rana Plaza building collapse on Friday demanded the government and foreign retailers to compensate and rehabilitate the affected workers immediately.

Labour leaders and affected workers and their families also urged the retailers to pay up the compensation they had promised for the Rana Plaza Donor Trust Fund.

The victims and affected families expressed disappointment at the delayed investigation into the cases filed following the worst industrial disaster in the country’s history.

They also called on the government to declare April 24 as a mourning day.
According to Clean Clothes Campaign, the tragic day was remembered
across the world, especially in Finland, Belgium, Ireland, Germany, Austria, Turkey, Australia, Spain, Italy, Pakistan and the United States.
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NEWAGEnew

* Two years of Rana Plaza tragedy- Anniversary observed:

Different organizations, rights groups, stakeholders observed the second anniversary Friday of the tragic Rana Plaza collapse to commemorate those who lost their lives in the largest ever industrial disaster.

On April 14, 2013, a nine-storied building that housed five garments factories collapsed in Savar leaving at least 1,138 dead and 2,515 injured.
Family members, survivours and workers’ organisations gathered in front of Rana Plaza in the morning to remember the victims.

They staged a demonstration and demanded punishment of the perpetrators of the disaster.
Dhaka district Deputy Commissioner Tofazzal Mia and Dhaka district Police Super Habibur Rahman placed bouquets at the place of devastated Rana Plaza in the morning.

Many hospitals opened camps in front of Rana Plaza to provide free treatment to the people injured in the disaster.
The local administration deployed law enforcing agency personnel in the area to avert untoward incidents.

Various workers organisations formed human chain and demonstrated in front of Press Club demanding Rana Plaza victims’ compensation and justice for the dead and injured.
read more.
FE bd

20150425 * Apathy written all over:

In two years since Rana Plaza collapsed, the action that the government has taken about the compensation for the families of deceased workers and for the wounded, the investigation of the cases filed against people and quarters responsible for the disaster and other relevant issues only betrays the incumbents’ insincerity towards the poor working class people.

The building, which housed five clothing factories, collapsed on April 24, 2013, leaving at least 1,130, mostly female apparel workers, dead; there have also been 2,500 others workers maimed and grievously wounded.
A review of two years of action that the government initiated points to, as New Age reported in four pieces on Friday, nothing of worth for the victims, deceased or alive, and their families in terms of their sustenance, medical considerations included, and rehabilitation.

Part of the government action, along with international efforts, concerning worker safety in the apparel sector, however, gets going beyond the public eye which, often embroiled in mismanagement and decisions taken in favour of the apparel factory owners, sometimes hog the headlines.

The government action in furthering the sustenance of the victims and their families by way of compensation and rehabilitation and in stopping the recurrence of such disasters in future by way of speedy and fair trial of the people responsible is hardly visible.
In two years, the victims or their families have not been paid the compensation in full; there are cases that the victims are still unaware of the amount they would receive in damages. As for trial and investigation in about a dozen cases, nothing appears to have so far progressed.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

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20150424

* Joint statement on 2nd anniversary of the Rana Plaza:

The text of the following statement was released by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry; High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini; U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez; EU Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility Marianne Thyssen; U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman; EU Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmström; U.S. Agency for International Development Acting Administrator Alfonso E. Lenhardt; and EU Commissioner in charge of International Cooperation and Development Neven Mimica.

“Today we mark the passage of two years since the tragic collapse of the Rana Plaza building in Dhaka, Bangladesh, that claimed over 1,100 lives and injured many more.  We join the people of Bangladesh in mourning those who lost their lives and remain mindful of the difficult struggle for those who survived.

In the aftermath of the Rana Plaza collapse, the European Union, the United States and the International Labor Organization (ILO) joined with Bangladesh to undertake a series of significant commitments to foster respect for fundamental labor rights and ensure worker safety and health in the garment sector.
The Partners announced the Sustainability Compact for Bangladesh – a statement of principles and commitments designed to bring about a lasting transformation in the sector.

Today, on the commemoration of the Rana Plaza collapse, we take note of the progress that has been made, but also the urgent work that remains.

Over the past two years, the government of Bangladesh has amended its Labor Law to strengthen certain aspects of freedom of association, collective bargaining and occupational health and safety; recruited and begun training a significant number of new factory inspectors; started fire and structural safety assessments and begun posting online factory safety information; established a hotline to report labor concerns; and since January 2013, registered approximately 300 new trade unions.
read more.
banglanews24NEW

* Families of 104 missing Rana Plaza workers to get help:

The government has initiated moves to give assistance to the families of 104 workers who remain untraced even two years after the Rana Plaza building collapse.

Labour Secretary Mikail Shipar told reporters on Thursday that the Global Donors Trust Fund had been informed about the status of the 104 missing workers.

“A list has been forwarded. The Trust will give assistance to these families,” he said.

“At present, it does not have sufficient funds. The assistance can be given once organisations that have promised money make their contribution,” Shipar further said.
read more.
bdnews24

* With tears survivors show anger:

Tearful and angry survivors of the Rana Plaza disaster gathered at the factory site on Friday to protest against poor compensation on the two-year anniversary of the tragedy that claimed more than 1,100 lives.

About 2,000 survivors, some on crutches, and families of victims held hands in a show of solidarity at the ruins of the factory complex which imploded in 2013 in one of the world’s worst industrial disasters.

From early morning, the crowd, many clutching photos of loved ones, gathered at a makeshift memorial at the site to protest a range of concerns including poor factory safety standards and a lack of compensation.

“I only got one million taka ($12,900) from the prime minister’s fund, but nothing from the trust fund created to help the victims,” Rehana Akhter, whose leg was amputated after she become trapped under tonnes of debris, said.
read more.
prothom

* They still come, shed tears:

Sajeda Begum was weeping in an abandoned corner of the Savar bus stand, holding in her hand a photo of her daughter Khaleda Akter.

She sobbed inconsolably, unable to speak.
Sajeda came from Gopalganj. She has been looking for her daughter for two years.

The place where she stood had a nine-storey building two years ago. Her daughter used to work in that building.
Along with hundreds of others, Khaleda was buried under the debris when the building collapsed on Apr 24, 2013. She was neither found among the survivors nor the dead.
Sajeda comes to the place every Apr 24.
Shedding tears in front of the debris is now her only solace.
read more.
bdnews24

* Two years’ gain: Neither compensation, nor justice:

The terrible day of losing thousand souls has come again after two years. The greatest industrial disaster ever that set the record of highest deaths in a single day.

I convey my sympathy to those who lost their lives, those who are critically injured and bed-ridden, and those who are still in search of their near and dear ones.

After two years, the issue of compensation to the families of victims and injured is still unsettled.
We have heard that a number of affected workers and relatives of the victims were donated disorderly by the owners, government, foreign buyers and other organisations, but it was also learnt that some were given $68,300 while some $5,100.

Moreover, no accurate data is available about who were given what amount on what considerations. It was not explained on what considerations some were given $5,100 and some $68,300.

A section of citizens is trying to offer this donation as compensation, without giving no explanation in this regard.

According to Sections 19 and 151 of the existing Labour Law of Bangladesh and as per Fifth Schedule, if any worker dies due to workplace injury, he/she would be compensated with $1290, and if any worker becomes permanently disable due to workplace injury, he/she would get $1,610 as compensation.
read more.
newsbangladesh

* Compensation claims mark Rana Plaza anniversary:

Different labour organisations on Friday marked the second anniversary of the Rana Plaza tragedy with holding protest rallies and forming human chains demanding compensation for the victims.

Many of the families are yet to be compensated while some of the culprits responsible for the building collapse have not been brought to book as yet.
In one of the biggest industrial tragedies in modern world history, the Rana Plaza collapse killed more than 1100 people, mostly workers of the country’s major export-earning readymade garments sector.

Labour union leaders and activists gathered at the site of the Rana Plaza in Savar on Friday morning, remembered their colleagues and expressed their anger.
“Rana Plaza collapse was not mere accident.
It was a carnage. So, the culprits must be punished,” Emdadul Haque, president of Rana Plaza workers’ union, told a rally there.
read more.
prothom

* Workers’ organizations demand compensation to victims:

Different workers organizations have demanded that compensation be paid to the victims of the Rana Plaza building collapse.

The demand was made in seperate human chain rallies held in front of the National Press Club in the capital on Friday making the second anniversary of the tragedy.

Combined Garments Workers’ Federation, Bangladesh Progotisheel, Sramik Federation,  Sramik Oikya and Bangladesh Sangjukta Sramik Federation have formed the human chains.
read more.
dailyboserverbd

* Fair compensation to victims demanded:

Some two years have already been passed since Rana Plaza building collapse tragedy, which claims 1,137 lives and injures scores, worker associations are still demanding fair compensation to the victims.

To press for their demands, leaders and activists of different worker associations staged demonstrations and formed human chains in front of National Press Club in city Friday to mark the second anniversary of Rana Plaza tragedy.

Sammilito Garments Sramik Federation, Sramik Okya, Bangaldesh Sangjukta Sramik Federation, and Bangladesh Progressive Garments Workers Federation separately formed the human chains there.

Addressing the protest program, Sammilito Garments Sramik Federation president Nazma Akter said that lots of innocent workers have turned into dead bodies due to factory owners’ and government’s negligence and huge profits.

Kamrun Nahar Rana of Bangladesh Progressive Garments Workers Federation, addressing another protest program, demanded adequate compensation and assistance for Rana Plaza tragedy victims.
read more.
banglanews24NEW

* Tears and anger as survivors mark Bangladesh factory disaster:

Tearful and angry survivors of the Rana Plaza disaster gathered at the factory site Friday to protest against poor compensation on the two-year anniversary of the tragedy that claimed more than 1,100 lives.

About 2,000 survivors, some on crutches, and families of victims held hands in a show of solidarity at the ruins of the factory complex which imploded in 2013 in one of the world’s worst industrial disasters.

From early morning, the crowd, many clutching photos of loved ones, gathered at a makeshift memorial at the site to protest a range of concerns including poor factory safety standards and a lack of compensation.

“I only got one million taka ($12,900) from the prime minister’s fund, but nothing from the trust fund created to help the victims,” Rehana Akhter, whose leg was amputated after she become trapped under tonnes of debris, said.

The trust fund was set up by retailers and labour groups in the wake of the tragedy.

“I can’t now work. I need expensive medicines and I have a family to look after,” the 24-year-old told AFP, supporting herself with a crutch, at the site in Savar outside the capital Dhaka.
read more.
BangkokPostNEW

* Workers call for maximum punishment to people responsible for Rana Plaza collapse:

Different organisations of apparel workers on Friday iterated their demands including the maximum punishment for people responsible for collapse of Rana Plaza including its owner Sohel Rana after two years of the deadliest workplace disaster.

On the morning of April 24, 2013, the eight-storey Rana Plaza, which had housed five clothing factories, a shopping mall and a bank, came crashing down, leaving at least 1,135 people dead, mostly female apparel workers and about 2,000 injured.

After the disaster, the police filed a case against Sohel Rana, and the owners of the five clothing factories housed in the building.
The workers demanded to declare April 24 as the state mourning day for garments workers, compensating the victims’ families with at least Tk 48 lakh that equals to lifelong earning to the deceased, missing and permanent disabled workers, rehabilitation for the injured workers and arrangement of treatment for them, to ensure security in work places, and to build colony for the workers and a memorial on the place of deadly incident by forfeiting the property of Rana Plaza.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

* Call for Rana Plaza victims’ compensation:

20150424 DAILYSTAR
Hundreds of people gather at the Rana Plaza collapse site in Savar, where over a thousand were killed in the worst workplace disaster of the world two years ago, forming human chains and holding protest programmes on April 24, 2015. Photo: Star

Garment workers’ rights bodies today called for immediate compensation of Rana Plaza victims and swift punishment for the culprits behind the world’s biggest workplace disaster.

– “Mark Apr 24 as mass worker murder day”

– Call to declare Apr 24 RMG mourning day

– Masses pour in at Rana Plaza collapse site

– Human chains, protest rallies held

The calls were placed on the second anniversary of Rana Plaza collapse, world’s worst workplace disaster, that killed over 1,100 people and injured double as many others.

Demonstrators at the site in Savar held protest rallies or human chains demanding punishment of the culprits to blame, including the building owner Sohel Rana.

Among those workers’ rights groups demonstrating at the collapse site were: Garment Workers Trade Union Centre, Garment Workers Federation, Bangladesh Garments and Industrial Federation and Garment Sromik Oikyo Forum.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* Two years of denial and betrayal:

The families of Rana Plaza victims have passed two years crying for their dear and near ones, suffering in their daily lives and waiting for due compensation and jobs.

In spite of tall promises, the government and the parties responsible for the disaster and corporate homicide have done little to heal the collective wound. There is no visible end to the uncertainty and suffering of thousands of families.

If we pinpoint the responsible parties for the death traps in garment factories of Bangladesh in general and Rana Plaza in particular we find at least three groups from home and abroad.
They include: (1) owners of factories, buildings and the BGMEA, (2) international buyers and brand retailers, and (3) the government and its relevant agencies.

Despite cracks in the complex, the five garment factories situated in Rana Plaza, owned by Sohel Rana who was associated with the ruling party, were kept open to fill overdue orders from international buyers.
Factory authorities forced workers either to come to work or face punishment. When generators were restarted after a power blackout, the building collapsed immediately with nearly five thousand workers working in the factories.
Therefore the owners of the factories and the building bear the prime responsibility of the mass killing.

Secondly, as an umbrella organisation of garment owners, BGMEA has the responsibility of monitoring compliance and advocating for high industrial standards.
They have a lengthy failure record in this regard; even the scale of the Rana Plaza disaster could not change their attitude.
On the contrary, this organisation appears as the collective muscle of the owners to protect them from the law.
That has always encouraged owners to ignore safety rules.

Thirdly, things on the ground are not supposed to be unknown to the international buyers and retailers.
Factories often accept abnormally low prices in an effort to attract buyers and grab orders.
In turn, and in order to maintain a profit rate, low cost suppliers often ignore safety measures and reduce workers real wage.
Such cost cutting measures make the workers more vulnerable.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* Rana Plaza survivors need long-term treatment:

Most Rana Plaza survivors, who sustained severe injuries and became traumatised, need continued financial support for long-term treatment to bring them back to normal life.

Talking to the Dhaka Tribune, several workers described their nightmare that they have been going through since the world’s deadliest building collapse on April 24, 2013.

“I want to walk and to come back to normal life as I was before the Rana Plaza tragedy,” Shahjahan Selim, a survivor of the factory disaster, told the Dhaka Tribune.

Selim sustained several fractures in his legs and became traumatised from that horror incident. Selim worked on the fifth floor of the building.

While narrating the ordeal he faced, Selim said: “I came out of the debris of collapsed building without any injuries, but later entered the building to rescue my fellow colleagues and pulled out around 20 of them.”

“Then started an agonising chapter of my life when the roof bar collapsed on me, breaking my legs and injuring other parts of my body.”

Selim said: “I have still been trying to overcome shock since that horrific incident during the rescue operation, but to no avail.”
read more.
DHAKATRIBUNE

* No end to their plight:

Survivors of the Rana Plaza building collapse are still struggling to recover from trauma and many of them are yet to be rehabilitated two years after the country’s worst industrial disaster in Savar in April 2013.

Plight of the survivors in the collapse and the families of the deceased or missing workers have worsened while the maimed ones stare blankly at an uncertain future, the families said.

A 14-year-old victim, Anna Khatun, who lost her right hand after being trapped under the rubble, was still undergoing treatment at the National Institute of Cancer Research and Hospital in the capital.
She along with her mother spent most of the time in Dhaka in last two years for her treatment as travel from her home town Jamalpur to the capital twice a month was difficult.

BRAC Limb and Brace Centre fitted her with a prosthetic hand in November 2013 but it developed cancer which spread to other parts of her body leading to the amputation of her right leg on February 15 this year.
‘I have to assist her in every work she has to do,’ Anna’s mother Hajiran Begum told New Age at her bedside in the Cancer Hospital.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

* Rana Plaza rescue workers left uncared for:

The commoners who sprang into action to rescue readymade garment workers after the 2013 deadly collapse of Rana Plaza in Savar have unfortunately faced sheer negligence.

Without any formal training in how to carry out rescue operations in the wake of such a massive industrial disaster, these people risked their own lives and went under the rubble to save as many lives as they could, but none from the state administration has cared to even enquire after these intrepid individuals in the last two years.

Rafiq Mia, a mason by profession, used to pull a rickshaw to earn money on days he was unable to find work. On April 24, 2013, he was working in a building in Savar’s Chapain when Rana Plaza collapsed.

The 35-year-old could not concentrate on work after hearing the news and rushed to the scene at noon. Without thinking twice, the rather skinny man joined the rescue operation.
read more.
DHAKATRIBUNE

* Bureaucratic tangles delay Rana Plaza cases:

Two years have passed since the collapse of Rana Plaza at Savar that killed over 1,135 people, mostly female garment workers, but charge sheets in the three criminal cases are yet to be pressed.

The process has apparently been stuck since September last year as the government is yet to approve the inclusion of 20 public servants in the cases.

Officials of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID), which has been given time on several occasions to submit the charge sheets, now say they hope to press the charges by May 21.

On April 15 this year, the Dhaka’s Judicial Magistrate Court fixed May 21 for submission of the probe reports.

Over 2,500 people were also injured in the deadliest building collapse in the country’s history on April 24, 2013. Two cases were
filed over the incident – one under criminal code while the other under building construction act.

CID Senior Assistant Superintendent Bijoy Krishna Kar, also investigation officer of the cases, yesterday said: “We hope to submit the charge sheets before the court on the next date.”
read more.
DHAKATRIBUNE

* Remains not examined as many still missing:

Two years into the Rana Plaza building collapse in Savar, the government is yet to prepare a complete list of the dead or those who have remained unaccounted for while several dozen human remains found on the site later remained unexamined.

Locals and urchins collected over two hundred pieces of bones and handed those over to the police for sending the remains to the authorities concerned for examination.

But police sent some 50 pieces of bone to the laboratory for examination, the officials said. ‘We have received some 50 pieces of bone collected from the collapse site and its surroundings…
It could not be determined whether those were human remains or bones of animals,’ said Sharif Akhtaruzzaman, chief of the National Forensic DNA Profiling Laboratory at Dhaka Medical College.

‘Had the remains been examined, it might have been possible to identify them [after DNA tests]……
The remains found should be examined immediately,’ said Reshmi Akhter, the sister of missing 20-year-old Phantom Apparel worker Shayla Akhter.
She told New Age that they had lost their dear one but wanted to see her grave.
Some of the unclaimed bodies were buried after those started decomposing.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

*  No compensation given yet to 13 missing Rana Plaza workers:

Even after two years of the deadliest factory collapse at Rana Plaza, family members of at least 13 missing workers are yet to get any compensation either from the government or from the Rana Plaza Donors’ Trust Fund.

However, the family members of 15 missing victims received below Tk1 lakh as compensation while the rest families got up to Tk30 lakh, beginning from Tk2 lakh.

Dhaka Tribune has discovered the figures after talking to the family members of 148 missing workers in Rana Plaza collapse, which claimed more than 1,135 lives.

“We did not get any single penny as compensation neither from the government nor from the trust fund against my missing daughter,” said tearful Saleha Begum, mother of Sabina Khatun, who went missing since Rana Plaza disaster.

Expressing her anger over the stakeholders, she also said: “I don’t want the money, rather I prefer to get the body of my missing daughter.”

On the contrary, Marium, a sister of missing Lina Akter, claimed that her family had received only Tk95, 000 as compensation.

While talking to the Dhaka Tribune, she, however, questioned: “How can the authority compensate a family of a missing worker only with Tk95,000 while the families of the injured received over Tk15 lakh.’’
read more.
DHAKATRIBUNE

* Rana Plaza probe makes no progress:

Govt is yet to give permission for suing its six officials

The trials and investigation of a dozen cases filed after the Rana Plaza building collapse in Savar in April 2013 have not moved an inch in last one year leaving the survivors and families of the dead disappointed.

Expressing their disappointment over the delay, the survivors, families of the deceased and labour rights activists blamed the government for buying time in the name of investigation.

‘We have seen nothing [relating to the cases] moving in last two years.
But, trials must be completed to set examples for other factory owners otherwise such tragedies will strike again and the factory owners will go unpunished, ’ said 20-year-old Rehana Khatun, a sewing operator of New Wave Styles factory the collapsed Rana Plaza had housed.

As 11 cases remain pending for trial with the labour court in Dhaka and two others under investigation by the Criminal Investigation Department, two year after the tragedy, the affected workers and labour rights activists questioned whether the government was sincere about ensuring justice.
‘The delay in the investigation seems deliberate as it is evident who are responsible for the tragedy …,’ Garment Workers Unity Forum president Mushrefa Mishu told New Age.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

* CRP gives hope to Rana Plaza survivors:

With the collapse of the factories they toiled for and resultant life-threatening injuries, they had thought that their lives had come to an end or at least they would be left to die a painful death as they could not afford treatment.

But two years after of the deadly Rana Plaza disaster, the survivors who took treatment at the Centre for the Rehabilitation for the Paralysed (CRP) have started dreaming a new life again thanks to the services provided by the centre.

“I was feeling helpless after losing my left leg in the tragedy,” said Rehana Akter, one of the survivors.

“But after coming to the CRP and getting artificial leg attached to my left leg, I am now hopeful that I will be able to build my life again,” she said.

The 24-year-old former garment worker was speaking at a programme organised to commemorate the victims of the building collapse at the CRP’s Mirpur campus in the capital yesterday.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* Victims yet to be paid full compensation:

Even in two years since the Rana Plaza collapse full compensation has not been paid to the familiesof the dead and the injured.

Collapse of Rana Plaza, housing several apparel factories, on April 24, 2013, killed over 1,100 people, mostly female apparel workers and left several hundred others maimed and missing.

The incident is known as the world’s worst factory building disaster. Some of the survivors, who received negligible sums of money as compensation from the Donor Trust Fund, raised questions about the assessment methods followed.

They said that they were finding the government as well as the clothing factory owners and the buyers equally insensitive to the pains and hardship they are going through since Rana Plaza, housing several apparel factories, collapsed in April 2013.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

* Complete compensation without delay:

A European diplomat yesterday called for completion of compensation disbursement to Rana Plaza victims without further delays.

“First and foremost, we need to close the chapter on the compensation for the Rana Plaza victims with great urgency and transparency,” said Martine van Hoogstraten, charge d’affaires of the Netherlands Embassy in Dhaka.

While close to 3,500 Rana Plaza victims and their dependants have received at least 70 percent of the compensation through the trust fund, much work is still needed before there can be full closure, she said.

Furthermore, more than 80 missing victims still need to be identified, efforts need to be coordinated to ensure that the discrepancies in the awards are minimised, long-term health care for the injured needs to be resolved, and, an overall compensation framework needs to be institutionalised.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* Full payment demanded as Trust Fund falls short:

Speakers at a programme Thursday reiterated the call for full payment of compensation money to the Rana Plaza victims and ensuring workers’ rights in the apparel sector.

Recognising the progress made so far in the RMG sector, they also called for investigating anti-union activities, completing the remaining factory assessment under National Plan of Action, and continuation of the improvement work including corrective steps.

The observations came at a commemoration event ‘Rana Plaza Two Years On: Towards a Safer RMG Sector for Bangladesh,’ organised jointly by the government and the ILO to mark the second Rana Plaza anniversary held in a city hotel where State Minister for Labour Mujibul Haque Chunnu was present as chief guest.

A minute’s silence was observed at the event in remembrance of the 1,136 people who lost their lives in the Rana Plaza collapse on 24 April 2013.
(…)
An amount of $6 million is still needed to make the full payments, she said stressing the need for identification of missing victims, coordinated efforts to minimise the discrepancies in the overall compensation framework.

“An urgent priority is to finalise the rules of the amended labour law, these are essential to guide the establishment of the occupational health and safety committee in factories,” said Canadian High Commissioner Pierre Benoit Laramee.
read more.
FE bd

tbv RanaPlaza
20150423

* Victims families yet to be compensated:

The second anniversary of the collapse of the Rana Plaza garment factory in Bangladesh, in which at least 1134 people were killed, is to be marked by demonstrations organised by survivors and trade union groups.

Rallies and tributes will take place on Friday 24 April, at the site where the clothing factory – which supplied garments to western retailers including Primark, Benetton and Matalan – once stood, as well as in the centre of Dhaka.

“We will organise a human chain in front of the national press club, then we will place flowers at the Rana Plaza site and at the graveyard,” said Kamrul Anam of the IndustriALL Bangladesh Council.
“Two years have gone and the victims and their families have not got their compensation, so they are anxious the brands and buyers pay their contribution. That’s why all the union groups are seriously annoyed,” said Anam.
read more.
newsbangladesh

* PMO trashes TIB report on Rana Plaza assistance:

Dismissing Transparency International Bangladesh’s  (TIB’s) report that claimed Tk 108 crore mobilised in the prime minister’s aid fund to distribute among Rana plaza victims remains unused, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) on Thursday said there is no fund in the name of Rana Plaza.

“I would like to clearly say there is/was no fund in the name of Rana Plaza in the Prime Minister’s Office. There are two funds of the honorable Prime Minister — one is Relief and Welfare Fund and another is Discretionary Fund,” said PMO Director General-4 Kabir Bin Anwar.

He said this while addressing a press conference to clarify TIB’s version on the fund of Rana Plaza victims held at the PMO.

An amount of Tk 108 crore mobilised in the prime minister’s aid fund to distribute among Rana plaza victims remains unused, said a TIB study on Tuesday.
read more. & read more. & read more. & read more. & read more.
UNBnew newsbangladesh BSSnew prothom  dailyboserverbd

* ‘Rana Plaza victims unlikely to get justice’:

Ruling Awami League lawmaker Ishrafil Alam on Wednesday expressed doubt over getting justice in the tragic Rana Plaza incident and said the people who are responsible for the building collapse and death of thousands of people were very powerful.

‘I am worried about the judicial process and I think Rana Plaza victims will not get justice,’ he said at a multilogue on ‘Post Rana Plaza: Where We Stand’ organised by ActionAid Bangladesh at BRAC Centre in the city.

Industrial accidents can take place in the country, but it needs to be addressed that victims are getting justice, Ishrafil, also the member of Parliamentary Standing Committee on Ministry of Labor and Employment, said.
‘I think the voice of justice will shed tears in silence regarding the Rana Plaza collapse, as the culprits are very powerful,’ he said.
‘We want industrialisation, but not at the cost of workers’ life,’ he added.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

* Physical, mental conditions of one-fourth Rana Plaza survivors worsen:

The physical and mental conditions of 22.6% survivors of Rana Plaza disaster have rather worsened in the past two years, a study finds.

More than 70% respondents surveyed by ActionAid Bangladesh have said they recovered from the trauma of the deadliest industrial disaster.

The study on the present condition of the Rana Plaza survivors revealed yesterday also shows that more than 61% of the survivors have to see doctors or go to hospitals for diagnoses, check-up and physiotherapy while depression and trauma still torment 59%.

Apart from the physical and psychological conditions, the study assesses the livelihood status of the survivors and the status of compensation and identifies the loopholes in extending necessary services to the survivors.

“The workers could not go back to work as they are traumatised with anxiety and the situation has worsened to a level that they have to take consultancy by professional psychologists,” said Kamal Ahmed, who teaches clinical psychology at Dhaka University.
read more.
DHAKATRIBUNE

* Apathy to Rana Plaza victims continues:

It is very unfortunate that victims of the April 24, 2013 Rana Plaza collapse are yet to get full compensation.

As New Age reported on Wednesday, based on the fourth monitoring report of the Centre for Policy Dialogue, a national think-tank, which was prepared by interviewing a selected number of victims and their family members over telephone and made public on Tuesday at a programme in the capital Dhaka, survivors of the collapse are still suffering from various physical and mental problems.

Besides, a few of the injured workers were employed locally in off-farm jobs mostly at wages below what they used to earn previously.
Overall, the living standard of the families of the dead and the injured in the worst-ever building collapse has gone down in the past two years.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

* Government has no clear data on Rana Plaza victims:

Government does not have clear data about the Rana Plaza victims even in two years since the accident, said speakers at a roundtable yesterday. 

“It was government’s responsibility to prepare statistics over the victims that how many workers were injured, how many were dead and how many remained unidentified,” said Kazi Saifuddin Ahmed, labour adviser of Bangladesh Employers Federation.

He blamed the government for “chaos over compensation issue” that there were confusions that who have been compensated and who have not been.

The roundtable discussion on “Present Situation of Rana Plaza Victims, Compensation and Rehabilitation” was organised by Bagladesh Occupational Safety, Health and Environment Foundation (OSHE) in the capital.
read more.
DHAKATRIBUNE

* Survivors left in the lurch:

A lot has changed for the better since the Rana Plaza building collapse, but those who survived it continue to pass their days in trauma and hardship amid uncertainty over rebuilding their lives as they have yet to receive the financial support they were promised.

After the disaster on the morning of April 24, 2013 that killed more than 1,135 people and injured more than 2,500, mostly garment workers, financial support poured in from members of the public, the government, the private sector and the international communities, which helped them to receive treatment and overcome the immediate shock.

With lives ruined and dreams shattered, many are still struggling to come to terms with the harsh reality that they have lost the ability to function as normal human beings.

Many have lost their limbs.  The cruel turn of events has turned them from breadwinners to people dependent on others.

Rehana Akter, 20, is one such survivor. But when both of her legs had to be amputated after the disaster, she frequently wished she had not remained alive.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* Rana Plaza survivors left in the lurch:

ActionAid survey paints gloomy picture

Some 55 percent of the Rana Plaza survivors are still unemployed, two years after the nation’s worst industrial disaster, due to physical inability, trauma or lack of suitable jobs, a recent survey by ActionAid Bangladesh found.

On the flipside, about 44 percent of the survivors managed to get gainfully employed in various sectors, according to the survey, which was unveiled yesterday at a programme organised at the capital’s Brac Centre Inn.

ActionAid, an international non-governmental organisation, had the biggest sample size among all the surveys conducted on the disaster that claimed 1,135 lives and injured 2,500.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* Half of Rana survivors jobless: Survey:

Letters of promise pour in, not money

More than half of the survivors of Rana Plaza building collapse are still unemployed while pledges of contribution from parties involved remain unfulfilled, says a new survey.

The survey, conducted by international charity ActionAid, shows that 55 per cent survivors have remained jobless, even nearly two years since the deadly industrial disaster happened, killing more than 1,100 people while injuring 2,515 others.

Although 44 per cent survivors got engaged in various types of jobs, 54.4 per cent respondents are still out of work, who face difficulties in meeting their daily needs, says the survey report released Wednesday in the city.

Even 2.0 per cent cannot meet their daily needs at all, the report added.
read more.
FE bd

* Apathy to Rana Plaza victims continues:

It is very unfortunate that victims of the April 24, 2013 Rana Plaza collapse are yet to get full compensation.

As New Age reported on Wednesday, based on the fourth monitoring report of the Centre for Policy Dialogue, a national think-tank, which was prepared by interviewing a selected number of victims and their family members over telephone and made public on Tuesday at a programme in the capital Dhaka, survivors of the collapse are still suffering from various physical and mental problems.

Besides, a few of the injured workers were employed locally in off-farm jobs mostly at wages below what they used to earn previously.
Overall, the living standard of the families of the dead and the injured in the worst-ever building collapse has gone down in the past two years.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

* Why only Tk 19 crore disbursed for Rana Plaza victims?:

According to the anti-graft watchdog, Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB), Tk 108 crore of the Tk 127 crore deposited into the Prime Minister’s Relief and Welfare Fund following the Rana Plaza building collapse is yet to be disbursed two years after the world’s worst workplace disaster.

This fund came from local sources, mainly commercial banks, in light of the disaster specifically for the victims and their families. That Tk. 127 crore had been donated to the Prime Minister’s Relief and Welfare Fund was disclosed in parliament on July 13, 2013.

However, over the last two years, the government only allocated Tk. 19 crore to the victims and their families, giving rise to questions about when the remaining money would be disbursed among the affected.
It is unfortunate and unacceptable that compensation remains elusive to many victims of Rana Plaza who are still living in utter privation, with no succor coming to them from the government.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

tbv RanaPlaza
20150422

* Rana Plaza survivors still facing tough times:

A new study revealed that most of the survivors of the Rana Plaza collapse are still suffering from depression and trauma even after two years as they are facing physical, mental and economic difficulties, reports UNB.

The study showed that that 61.2 percent of the survivors still need to visit doctors, clinic or NGO run facilities on regular basis while 59.1 percent of them are suffering from depression and trauma.

The study report, based on a survey by ActionAid, Bangladesh on 1414 of the survivors, Bangladesh was launched on Wednesday at BRAC Cnetre in the city s Mohakhali area, just two days ahead of the second anniversary of the Rana Plaza tragedy.

Of the 1414 survivors, 70.6 percent responded that they are somewhat healed while 22.6 percent reported that their condition is getting worse.
The survey report shows that 55 percent survivors are still unemployed while 44 percent survivors got engaged in various types of jobs.
Besides, most of the survivors claimed that they did not get proper compensation.
read more. & read more. & read more.
BangladeshNEWS  Ittefaq FE bd

* Rana Plaza Survivors: Justice Delayed Is Justice Denied:

Rabbi Sheikh, 10, began crying when talking about his mother, Shirina Akhter. “I always think about my mother,” he said.

Two years ago, Shirina was among more than 1,130 garment workers killed when the multistory Rana Plaza building pancaked. Her husband, Latif Sheikh, heard the building collapse as he sold fruit by the roadside. It took him 17 days to find Shirina’s body.

“My son always cries, remembering his mother,” Latif says. “He is not able to lead a normal life like the others at his age.”

As the global community commemorates the April 24 Rana Plaza tragedy, thousands of garment workers who survived the disaster, mostly young women, remain too injured or ill to work, and the families of those killed struggle emotionally and financially to piece together the lives shattered that day.
read more.
SOLIDARITYCENTERnew

* Victims face $6mn compensation shortfall:

Victims of Rana Plaza collapse are suffering a $6 million shortfall in a compensation fund two years after the tragedy that claimed more than 1,100 lives, fund organisers said.

Organisers of the trust fund estimated that $30 million in compensation was needed after the collapse of the Rana Plaza factory complex, where workers stitched clothes for Western retailers for poor pay.

On the eve of the second anniversary of the disaster this Friday, organisers of the trust set up by the retailers and labour groups said $24 million had been paid or pledged to families of those killed.

“Still we’ve a shortfall of around $6 million,” Mojtaba Kazazi, executive director of the trust’s claims administration, told on Monday.

Sultan Uddin Ahmed, a member of a committee that runs the trust fund, criticised retailers for not doing enough for dependants along with 1,500 workers who suffered horrific injuries in the disaster.

“It is unfortunate, we could not clear all the dues in two years. Some of the world’s top retailers were making apparel at the factories. Yet the trust fund is still short of $6 million,” Ahmed said.

“Bangladeshi factory owners are also to blame. They did not pay anything to the fund,” he said.
read more.
banglanews24NEW

* Financial supports remain elusive to Rana Plaza victims:

Rana Plaza victims and their family members are still suffering from various kinds of physical and mental problems despite several initiatives taken to improve their living conditions over the last two years, say findings of a leading local think tank yesterday.

Besides, the amount of financial support received by the victims and their families so far is insufficient to meet their needs, although they were promised complete financial support to cover their monthly expenses as well as medical expenses for their treatment.

The findings were disclosed at a dialogue on “Rana Plaza Tragedy: Two Years After” arranged by the Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) at the city’s BRAC Centre Inn to mark the second anniversary of the collapse of the Rana Plaza building that housed garment factories in which more than 1,100 people died.
read more.
DHAKATRIBUNE

* Many Rana Plaza victims worse-off than before: CPD:

The think-tank finds substantive progress in garment sector in many areas

The living condition of the families of many deceased and injured workers of Rana Plaza is worse than it was prior to the fateful event two years ago, the Centre for Policy Dialogue said yesterday.

The private think-tank, however, said there has been progress in various areas, including disbursement of financial support to the families of deceased and surviving workers, re-employment of workers and medical care.

Positive reinforcements also came by in case of workplace safety and labour rights, the CPD said in the fourth edition of its monitoring report on the initiatives taken by the government, owners and other stakeholders in the aftermath of the Rana Plaza collapse.
read more. & read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015 NEWAGEnew

20150422 * Debate still on about number of victims:

Even two years after the Rana Plaza collapse, the debate over the total number of unidentified victims is not over yet.

Of the dead whose identity was initially unknown, 206 have been identified so far through DNA tests, the Centre for Policy Dialogue said in a report yesterday.

The government couldn’t collect any information about 85 victims. As their identity couldn’t be known, their family members didn’t qualify for any financial support, said the think tank.

Labour Secretary Mikail Shipar, however, put the number of unidentified victims at 62.

Identity of 166 workers remained unknown till March. Of them, 104 have been identified so far, he said.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

* No major progress in compensation:

Says CPD study on Rana Plaza tragedy

No significant progress has yet been made in identifying missing workers, paying compensation and improving the socioeconomic conditions of the victims and their families even two years after the tragic Rana Plaza incident, a study report revealed Tuesday.

The fourth monitoring report prepared by the Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) also sought serious attention from the government, apparel manufacturers, retailers and other stakeholders to ensure smooth delivery of follow-up treatment to the victims and legal issues for the sake of justice in the country’s worst-ever industrial disaster that killed 1,138 people and injured hundred others.

It also suggested further attention to the activities under EU Sustainability Compact, Accord, Alliance, National Tripartite Plan of Actions to speed up restructuring and reforms of the garment sector which plays a key role in the country’s economic growth.

The report titled “Moving Beyond the Shadow of the Rana Plaza Tragedy: In Search of a Closure and Restructuring Strategy” was released at a CPD dialogue on Rana Plaza Tragedy: Two Years After at BRAC Centre Inn in the capital in the afternoon.
read more.
FE bd

tbv RanaPlaza
20150421

* ‘No fund for Rana Plaza victims in PM Office’:

The Prime Minister’s press wing has contradicted report of Transparency International Bangladesh regarding a fund at the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) for the victims of Rana Plaza collapse, saying that there is no separate fund in the name of Rana Plaza in the PMO.

The TIB made the comments at a press conference on Tuesday.

In a clarification, the PM’s press wing said the information the TIB has provided through the press conference that Tk 127 crore has been collected in the name of the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund for Rana Plaza victims and of the amount, Tk 105 crore remains unutilised is not true.
read more. & read more.
newsbangladesh BSSnew

20150421 * Rana Plaza: Tk 108cr PMO fund unused, says TIB:

Transparency International Bangladesh today pointed out lack of transparency and dillydallies in the disbursement of the fund for victims of the Rana Plaza collapse, the world’s largest workplace disaster.

Two years into the incident, about Tk 108 crore out of Tk 127 crore that was deposited to the prime minister’s fund in aid for the victims is yet to be disbursed, according to the TIB.

The international corruption watchdog’s local chapter came up with the finding while presenting a report at its Dhanmondi office today in “Steps taken to implement good governance in readymade garment sector: Progress in last one year”.

The report said around 19 million US dollars has been deposited to the Rana Palza Donors’ Trust Fund while around 2.48 million US dollars was also added to this from the prime minister’s fund to help the Rana Plaza victims.

The list of people who have been compensated for the Rana Plaza tragedy and the amount of the compensation are yet to be made public, the report said.
read more. & read more.& read more. & read more.& read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015 dailyboserverbd UNBnew NEWAGEnew DHAKATRIBUNE

* 50 claims made by Rana Plaza victims still remain unresolved:

Nearly 50 claims made by the Rana Plaza victims are yet to be resolved, although two years have already elapsed since the tragic incident, according to the data released on Monday.

Rana Plaza Claims Administration (RPCA) said 2,839 out of total 2,871 claims received from injured workers, dependants of the deceased and missing workers have so far been reviewed.

The remaining 32 claims and plus approximately 20-30 additional deceased claims are yet to be filed.

A press release issued on Monday said the remaining claims will be included in the final instalment.

It said the Rana Plaza Coordination Committee (RPCC) till April 8 made payment of Tk 760 million against these claims to the injured workers and family members of the deceased and missing workers.
read more.
FE bd

* RMG workers, labour leaders demand highest punishment of Sohel Rana:

Garments workers and labour leaders on Monday demanded highest punishment of Sohel Rana, owner of Rana Plaza at Saver which collapsed in April 2013, killing over 1,000 people, mainly female RMG workers.

From a human chain at front of National Press Club in the capital, they claimed the government intentionally was delaying the trial process even around two years after the tragic incident.

Bangladesh Garment Sramik Sanghati organised the programme marking two years of the incident.
The organisation also held programmes at several places including in front of Rana Plaza at Savar, Narayanganj and at front of Chittagong Press Club.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150420

* 70% of Rana Plaza compensation payments complete:

A total US$ 30 million, after the deduction of amounts received from Prime Minister Welfare fund, is required for full payment of compensation to the Rana Plaza injured workers and the family members of deceased and missing workers, said the International Labour Organization (ILO) on Monday.

That includes claims of New Wave Bottom workers paid separately by Primark, as well as long term medical care and allied costs for injured workers. The estimated amount also includes an estimation of potential supplementary payments.

So far, the amounts either received in the Trust Fund or spent otherwise for the benefit of Rana Plaza workers and expected to be recognized as contribution to the Trust Fund total approximately US$ 24 million, it said.
(…)

On April 8, the Rana Plaza Claims Administration has made available approximately Tk 31 crore to eligible claimants.

Payments were made to injured workers, dependants of the deceased and missing workers of Rana Plaza building collapse.

Tk 31 crore, which is approximately 30% of total awards, was paid out through Dutch Bangla Bank accounts to 2968 eligible claimants, including 2277 dependants from deceased workers, 282 dependants of missing workers and 409 injured workers.

The above payment is in addition to 40% payment of all awards after deduction amounting to approximately BDT 29.40 crore which was paid through Dutch Bangla Bank accounts to 2,770 eligible dependants of deceased and missing workers and to injured person in five separate installments from September to December 2014.

In addition, approximately Tk 15.50 crore was paid through bKash as initial payment to injured workers, dependants of the deceased and missing workers as well as non-injured workers on 23 April 2014.

These payments are authorized by the multi-stakeholder Rana Plaza Coordination Committee, and paid out of the Trust Fund set up for the purpose of providing compensation to the Rana Plaza injured and the families of the deceased and missing workers.
read more. & read more. & to read.
UNBnew RANAPLAZA arragement INDEPENDENT

* Rana Plaza collapse: HC seeks progress report on trial proceedings:

The High Court today directed the officer-in-charge of Savar Police Station to submit a progress report before it by April 26 on the trial proceedings of the cases filed over the incident of Rana Plaza collapse that killed 1,135 people in April 2013.

While hearing a suomoto rule, the court ordered Rajdhani Unnayan Kartipakkha (Rajuk) to submit a report on vulnerable buildings in the capital before it on that day.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

20150420 * Human remains found in Rana Plaza debris:

Police recovered human remains from Rana Plaza debris on Monday morning just four days before the second anniversary of tragic building collapse that claimed 1,137 lives and injured scores.

Police sources said several urchins found the remains when they were looking for iron rods in the rubbles.

Being informed by locals, police took the remains for DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) test, the sources added.

Meanwhile, Bangladesh Garment Sramik Sanghati staged demonstration and held a protest rally in front of Rana Plaza site where workers demanded exemplary punishment to the culprits and equal compensation to the victims.
read more.& read more.
banglanews24NEW NEWAGEnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150419

* Rana Plaza: a lesson forgotten?:

Two years on from the Rana Plaza disaster in Dhaka, Bangladesh where a factory collapsed killing over 1100 workers, what has changed in the global rag trade?

Are workers safer?
Are wages fairer?
Are we as consumers any more willing to pay a higher price for our clothes to ensure that the one in six of us who work in the global clothing sector have a decent life?
Or is the throw-away culture, in which a $1 t-shirt is bought, worn and chucked away in no time, here to stay; and with it a business model that locks in a race to the bottom?
We speak to a factory owner from Dhaka, a fashion deisgner and the man responsible for drawing up the new rules intended to make life better and safer for the people making our clothes.
listen to radio program.
bbc

* Rana Plaza: rallies in Bangladesh as victims await compensation:

In runup to second anniversary of factory disaster, victims and trade unions say there is still $8m shortfall in $30m fund
The second anniversary of the collapse of the Rana Plaza garment factory in Bangladesh, in which more than 1,100 people died, is to be marked by demonstrations organised by survivors and trade union groups.
Rallies and tributes will take place on Friday 24 April, at the site where the clothing factory – which supplied garments to western retailers including Primark, Benetton and Matalan – once stood, as well as in the centre of Dhaka.
“We will organise a human chain in front of the national press club, then we will place flowers at the Rana Plaza site and at the graveyard,” said Kamrul Anam of the IndustriALL Bangladesh Council.
“Two years have gone and the victims and their families have not got their compensation, so they are anxious the brands and buyers pay their contribution.
That’s why all the union groups are seriously annoyed,” said Anam.
(…)Taherul Islam, of the Bangladesh Occupational Safety, Health and
Environment Foundation (OSHE), said there have been some improvements in working conditions since the disaster, including the legally binding agreement of the Accord on Fire and Building Safety by brands and trade unions.“The Accord Alliance is trying to find local shortcomings in the buildings, for fire safety. But many
issues related to health and safety remain,” he said, urging western companies that use suppliers
from Bangladesh to press for better conditions.

Support programmes have been set up by national and some international NGOs to provide survivors with vocational training and give their children educational support, but disorganisation between various initiatives is a cause of confusion and frustration among some workers, said Islam.

Twenty victims have been invited to a face-to-face consultation with stakeholders at a meeting on Wednesday organised by OSHE to try to clarify the status of compensation and rehabilitation for survivors.
read more. & read more.
guardian the INDEPENDENT uk

* Compensation still eludes victims:

Academics, labour leaders and lawyers on Saturday urged the government to amendment the Bangladesh Labour Act, 2006 claiming that the act was not labour-friendly.

They said this at a roundtable conference organised by Bangladesh Garments Sramik Sanghati at Dhaka Reporters Unity, marking two years of Rana Plaza collapse at Savar in April, 2013.

They also demanded that a compensation policy should be formulated for properly compensating the victims.
Oil, gas national committee member secretary Anu Muhammad said the government should define accident and killing.

Dhaka University teacher AH Ahmed Kamal said overcoming the existing situation in the RMG sector was possible if people would raise their voice and start movement against the government and other responsible authorities.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

* Compensation still eludes Rana Plaza victims:

Donations, offered mainly by global retailers, have overshadowed the issue of ensuring compensation to the surviving Rana Plaza workers and the families of their deceased colleagues.

The issue was raised yesterday by the Bangladesh Garment Sramik Sanghati (BGSS), which said that the money handed over to the workers and families of the dead workers by the Rana Plaza Donor Trust Fund came from both public and private sectors as donations and not as compensation that workers are legally entitled to.

The organisation, citing the Rana Plaza Arrangement, said nowhere in the English version of the ‘Rana Plaza Agreement Terms and Conditions of Donor Trust Fund’ does it contain the word compensation.

Instead, there is a mention of the words ‘financial support’. There is also no mention of compensation in payment letters, sent by Rana Plaza Claim Administration to the victims. The letters of payment receipts contain the words grant, it said.

“So, it is clear that the Rana Plaza victims are not getting any compensation,” said Taslima Akhter, coordinator of the BGSS while presenting a paper at a discussion at Dhaka Reporters Unity.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

tbv RanaPlaza
20150418

* Benetton doubles compensation for Rana Plaza victims:

Benetton Group has announced that it has contributed $11,00,000 to the Rana Plaza Trust Fund, doubling the sum recommended in an independent assessment of its contribution by PwC and endorsed by WRAP, an NGO focused on social compliance through global supply chains, the Italy-based fashion brand said at a news release on Friday.

In fact Benetton’s payment of $11,00,000 follows a previous payment of $5,00,000 made through BRAC, before the Rana Plaza Trust Fund was established, said the release.
read more. & read more. & read more. & read more.
NEWAGEnew prothom FE bd INDEPENDENT

* Benetton to pay $1.1m into Rana Plaza trust fund:

Italian fashion retailer Benetton announced yesterday that it would pay $1.1 million into an international fund to compensate victims of the Rana Plaza factory collapse in Bangladesh two years ago in which 1,138 people died.

Benetton, which initially denied using any firms located in the nine-storey factory complex which workers and local journalists had warned was unsafe before it collapsed with thousands of people inside, said it was donating double the amount advised by experts.

“We have decided to go further to demonstrate very clearly how deeply we care,” Benetton Group chief executive Marco Airoldi said in a statement.

Benetton commissioned experts at consulting firm PwC to estimate how much it should contribute to an international compensation fund based on the level of its commercial association with the Rana Plaza, which collapsed on April 24, 2013.
(…)

The payment follows more than a million people signing a petition on the campaigning website Avaaz urging Benetton to contribute to the compensation fund that was put into place eight months after the disaster.

“Benetton is not giving nearly enough to ease the death and suffering their clothes have caused, but a million people forced them to reverse two years of refusing to pay any compensation,” Avaaz’s Campaign Director Dalia Hashad said in a statement.

“This sets a precedent for global brands everywhere: when workers die, you cannot walk away. All eyes are now on holdout companies like Carrefour, JC Penney, Walmart, and The Children’s Place to step up and fill the funding gap so all victims get what they need and deserve,” she added.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

tbv RanaPlaza
20150417

* CCC believes Benetton’s 1.1 million USD contribution insufficient:

One week before the second anniversary of the Rana Plaza disaster, with the compensation fund still at a shortfall, global actions begin

Today marks one week until the two-year anniversary of the worst industrial accident to ever hit the garment industry, when the Rana Plaza building in Bangladesh came crashing down.

The Clean Clothes Campaign (CCC) and its trade union allies and partners are marking the second anniversary of disaster, with a global call to action, demanding that the Rana Plaza survivors and victims’ families immediately receive the full compensation they are entitled to; and that all apparel brands and retailers doing business in Bangladesh sign the Bangladesh Accord on Fire and Building Safety.

Despite the growing urgency, brands continue to postpone payments to the Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund, or make payments that are clearly insufficient to bridge the gap. Additional payments are necessary to fill the current $8.5 million shortfall in the Fund, which would then ensure that the survivors and victims’ families of the Rana Plaza tragedy receive full compensation.
To date claimants have only received 70% of what they are owed, with further payments indefinitely delayed as a result of the current shortfall.

This morning Benetton announced paying 1.1 million USD into the Fund, after a massive campaign calling upon them to pay 5 million.
“Benetton had a real opportunity to emerge as a leader and prove that their pledges of empathy, understanding, and care for the welfare of the victims were not just some PR spin. Unfortunately, the true colours of Benetton are now revealed”
says Ineke Zeldenrust from the Clean Clothes Campaign.
read more.

* Reactive Statement: Benetton pays $1.1 million into Rana Plaza compensation fund:

Following news that Benetton will pay $1.1 million into the ILO-administered Rana Plaza compensation fund, UNI Global Union and IndustriALL Global Union – the two global unions campaigning for fair and just compensation on behalf of the victims – issued the following statement:

UNI Global Union General Secretary Philip Jennings said: “We are deeply disappointed with Benetton’s contribution. This is a token step and we appeal to them to do better. We will continue our efforts for Benetton to increase their contribution.

“They have been ill-advised by their hired consultants to take the low road. This is about people’s lives and is not a time for discount policies.
(…)

IndustriALL General Secretary Jyrki Raina said: “Although every cent counts and brings us closer to providing a future for the victims, Benetton had the opportunity to take leadership for the sector and close the darkest chapter of its history for once and for all.

“The people who died in Rana Plaza were the people that made the United Colours of Benetton. We believe that a contribution of $5 million would show respect to the sacrifice that they made.”
read more. & read more.
INDUSRIall  UNIglobalUNION

* Avaaz response to the announcement of Benetton on compensation for Rana Plaza victims:

** Pushed by one million citizens, Benetton pays compensation to survivors of Rana Plaza disaster ***

Days before the second anniversary of the worst garment worker disaster in history, Benetton’s CEO Marco Airoldi is set to announce that his company will contribute $1.1m USD to the Rana Plaza victims in Bangladesh.

Benetton’s announcement follows a public campaign by more than one million members of the civic group Avaaz, which moved the company to support survivors and their families after two years of refusals.

Dalia Hashad, Avaaz Campaign Director, said:

Benetton is not giving nearly enough to ease the death and suffering their clothes have caused, but a million people forced them to reverse two years of refusing to pay any compensation.
This sets a precedent for global brands everywhere: when workers die, you cannot walk away.
All eyes are now on holdout companies like Carrefour, JC Penney, Walmart, and The Children’s Place to step up and fill the funding gap so all victims get what they need and deserve.
read more.
AVAAZ

news release:

* Benetton Group Doubles Compensation for Rana Plaza Trust Fund Recommended by Independent Assessors:

Therefore the Total Contribution to Rana Plaza Victims Amounts to USD 1,600,000
Benetton Commits on Factory Standards by Applying the Principles of the Accord on Fire and Building Safety to Global Suppliers 

Benetton Group announces that it has contributed USD 1,100,000 to the Rana Plaza Trust Fund, doubling the sum recommended in an independent assessment of its contribution by PwC and endorsed by WRAP, an NGO focused on social compliance through global supply chains.

In fact Benetton’s payment of USD 1,100,000 follows a previous payment of USD 500,000 made through BRAC, before the Rana Plaza Trust Fund was established.
read more.
prn

tbv RanaPlaza
20150415

* Rana Plaza investigators get more time:

The investigating officer (IO), probing the 2013 collapse of the Rana Plaza building at Dhaka’s Savar, has been granted more time to submit his report to the court.

The court of Dhaka’s Chief Judicial Magistrate granted Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Bijay Krishna Kar five more weeks to file the report after he sought an extension on Wednesday.
Kar, an official of the police’s Crime Investigation Department (CID), was asked to submit his reports on May 21.
read more.
Ittefaq

* Court grants more time to Rana Plaza collapse investigator to file report:

The investigating officer (IO), probing the 2013 collapse of the Rana Plaza building at Dhaka’s Savar, has been granted more time to submit his report to the court.

The court of Dhaka’s Chief Judicial Magistrate granted Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Bijay Krishna Kar five more weeks to file the report after he sought an extension on Wednesday.

Kar, an official of the police’s Crime Investigation Department (CID), was asked to submit his reports on May 21.

On Apr 24, 2013, the Rana Plaza building in Savar, which housed five garment factories, collapsed.

Official figures put the death toll at 1,135, mostly workers of the garment factories. At least 2,458 people were rescued from the rubbles.

Two cases were filed over the incident—one over death due to negligence and the other under the building code.

The court had earlier sought explanations from the IO over the delay.  ASP Kar told the court that the chargesheet would be filed as soon as possible.

State Minister for Home Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal had said in April 2014 that the police would complete the investigation ‘very soon’.
read more.
bdnews24

tbv RanaPlaza
20150412

* ACC files cases against Rana’s parents:

Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) on Sunday filed two cases against the collapsed Rana Plaza owner Sohel Rana’s parents Abdul Khaleque and Marjina Begum over illegal properties.

In the case statement, the duo are accused for attaining illegal assets worth of Tk 17-crore.

ACC deputy-director Mahbubul Alam filed the cases with Shahbagh Thana.

ACC deputy-director (public relations) Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya confirmed the matter to banglanews.

Earlier on April 9, ACC gave the approval of the case in a regular meeting held in Segun Bagicha.

On April 5, two separate reports were placed in the ACC.
read more. & read more.
banglanews24NEW dailyboserverbd

tbv RanaPlaza
20150410

* ACC okays cases against Sohel Rana’s parents:

Rana’s father Abdul Khalek owned assets worth around Tk10.25 crore, while his mother Morzina owned wealth worth around Tk6.68 crore

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has approved filing of two cases against Rana Plaza owner Sohel Rana’s parents on charge of illegally accumulating wealth worth around Tk17 crore.

The decision came at the anti-graft body’s regular meeting at its headquarters in Segunbagicha, Dhaka yesterday, ACC Public Relations Officer Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya confirmed to the Dhaka Tribune.

He said the ACC found proof during a primary investigation that Rana’s father Abdul Khalek owned assets worth around Tk10.25 crore, while his mother Morzina owned wealth worth around Tk6.68 crore, both allegedly having acquired the fortune through illegal means.
(…)

An ACC official, seeking anonymity, told the Dhaka Tribune that in 10-12 years, Rana became owner of two high-rise commercial buildings in the capital – one is the collapsed Rana Plaza, the other is Rana Tower, both in Savar.
read more. read more. & read more.
DHAKATRIBUNE NEWAGEnew FE bd

tbv RanaPlaza
20150406

* Build a better future for Rana Plaza survivors:

Improve co-ordination of rehabilitation efforts

Nearly two years on from the Rana Plaza factory collapse which killed 1,135 workers and injured over 2,500, over half of the survivors are still unemployed.

While it is welcome to see government and stakeholder initiatives make bold moves to reform factory safety and take the RMG sector forward, we still need to focus on maxmising the help available for victims.

A new survey by ActionAid and the ILO reveals an upward trend of employment among survivors but notes that 55% are without work. While a considerable number are training to be self-employed, their collective efforts are still held back by disabilities and trauma suffered in the disaster.

The government must increase efforts to boost co-operation among stakeholders to further help the survivors. Brands are continuing to make voluntary contributions to their own funds to compensate survivors, and the Rana Donors Trust Fund, chaired by the International Labour Organisation, is still working to achieve its revised $30m target to deliver compensation for Rana Plaza victims in line with the ILO convention 121.
read more.
DHAKATRIBUNE

* Govt, factory owners need to make good on promises:

In the aftermath of the Rana Plaza collapse at Savar on April 24, 2013, which killed more than 1,100 people, mostly workers of the apparel factories located in the unauthorised multi-storey building, and many more injured, there were promises galore, especially from the government and apparel factory owners, of adequate compensation for the dead and effective rehabilitation for the wounded.

Most of those have, however, remained just that — promises.
The media, print and electronic, reported just the other day that the families of the dead and wounded workers have received less than half of the compensation package, as determined by a government-commissioned committee composed of, among others, experts and labour leaders.

Now, the ActionAid Bangladesh tells us that 55 per cent of the 1,414 survivors of the worst-ever collapse in the nation’s history that it surveyed have not yet been rehabilitated.

The study, the findings of which were made public Saturday, identified unavailability of suitable jobs and unwillingness of apparel factories to employ wounded workers lest they should fail to live up to their responsibilities.
Given that the dead and the wounded in the Rana Plaza collapse were poor and many of them were the sole bread earner of the family, these families must be going through an ordeal that few can even imagine.
(…)
The unresolved murder of Aminul Islam is a case in point.
According to a report published in New Age on Sunday, Aminul, a labour leader in the apparel sector, was abducted from Savar on April 4, 2012 and found dead on the roadside at Ghatail in Tangail the next day but, three years on, the government has not even properly investigated his murder, let alone bring the killers to justice.

It is important to recall that the government initially appeared reluctant to investigate the murder and eventually decided to do so amidst mounting pressure, national and international.
Subsequently, in January 2014, the Criminal Investigation Department of police submitted the charge sheet without identifying the genuine murderers, that too, after spending an inordinate amount of time in the name of investigation.
Aminul’s family, meanwhile, has had to live in hardship amidst threats from the alleged killers.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150405

* Survey: Over half of Rana Plaza survivors still unemployed:

More than half the Rana Plaza factory collapse survivors still have no job even after two years into the country’s deadliest industrial accident which killed 1,135 workers and injured over 2,500.

Lack of availability of suitable jobs, the workers’ physical weakness, mental trauma after the horror and employers’  unwillingness to recruit have caused the surviving workers to stay without jobs, finds a study by ActionAid Bangladesh.

It said though an upward trend of employment was found, the preliminary findings of second year survey showed still 55% of the survivors were unemployed.

ActionAid disclosed the findings yesterday. The non-government organisation has been implementing a project titled “Socio-economic reintegration and rehabilitation for survivors with disabilities of Rana Plaza disaster” with support from International Labour Organization (ILO).
read more.
DHAKATRIBUNE

* Self-employed Rana Plaza survivors now face fund crunch:

The Rana Plaza survivors are now faced with fund crunch while running small business they initiated with their compensation.  

A recent visit to some survivors’ residents at Savar revealed the fact.

The Dhaka Tribune found that some survivors turned out to be small entrepreneurs instead of going to join the RMG factory again following the traumatic event of Rana Plaza collapse.

Talking to several victims, it was revealed that the RMG workers started business with the fund they got from several sources, but now are facing fund shortage.

A total of 50 Rana Plaza survivors including 44 female and 6 male received training on small business and entrepreneurship development conducted by the ActionAid Bangladesh.

So far, 40 participants engaged themselves in self-employment, 30 of which received advanced skill training course on dress-making and tailoring, boutique, ti-die and screen-print.

“The dream of educating my daughter was shattered when Rana Plaza building collapsed, leaving me in dark about the future,” Kohinoor Begum, a survivor of Rana Plaza disaster, told the Dhaka Tribune.
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DHAKATRIBUNE

tbv RanaPlaza
20150404

* Rana Plaza collapse victims demand compensation:

Family members of those who died in the Rana Plaza collapse and the surviving victims at a human chain beside Dhaka-Aricha highway in Savar yesterday reiterated their demand for compensation and declared April 24 a national mourning day for the RMG sector. 

The human chain was formed under the banner of “Garments Workers Front-GWF”. The demonstrators also demanded punishment for those responsible for the collapse of the nine-storey building on April 24, 2013.
The tragedy left 1,136 people dead and hundreds injured.
to read.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

tbv RanaPlaza
20150403

* Garments Sramik Front demand April 24 as mourning day:

Garments Sramik Front, a garments worker’s organization, on Friday formed a human chain in Savar demanding to declare April 24 as garments workers mourn day across the nation.

They made their demands with red flag in their hands in front of the collpased Rana Plaza site in Savar, on the outskirts of the capital this morning.

The leaders of the organisation demanded proper compensation for all RMG workers of the Rana Plaza and ensure exemplary punishment to those responsible for the killings of workers.
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NEWAGEnew

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20150401

* Primark pays out 668 Rana Plaza victims:

Primark has completed paying over 95 percent of long-term compensations to 668 Rana Plaza disaster victims, who were workers of New Wave Bottoms, a supplier of the British retailer.

The retailer made the payments through Brac Bank and bKash to the family members of the dead and injured workers of New Wave Bottoms, Primark said in a statement yesterday.

“There are a very small number of claimants yet to receive compensation because either the individuals require a high level of support and/ or the victims and/or their dependants have only very recently come forward,” Primark said.

“This approach to compensation involved medical and vulnerability assessments.”
(…)
Primark’s total aid stands at $14 million. The company has additionally made a payment of $1 million to the Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund, chaired by the International Labour Organisation, for distribution to workers in its competitors’ supply chain, according to the statement.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

tbv RanaPlaza
20150329

* Rana Plaza collapse: RMG factory owner denied bail:

The High Court today denied bail to Aminul Islam, owner of a garment factory housed in Rana Plaza building that collapsed in 2013, in a corruption case.

The HC bench of Justice Quamrul Islam Siddique and Justice Amir Hossain returned the bail petition of Aminul to his lawyer.

Aminul was owner of Phantom Apparels Ltd, an RMG factory housed in Rana Plaza building in Savar which collapsed on April 24, 2013 killing 1135 people.

During today’s proceedings, ACC lawyer Khurshid Alam Khan told the court that there are specific allegations against Aminul of establishing his garment factory on two floors in the Rana Plaza building.

RMG factories cannot be established in any commercial building as per existing law, the ACC lawyer said.
read more.
the DAILYSTAR new 2015

20150329 * HC rejects bail plea of owners of factories housed in Rana Plaza:

The High Court on Sunday rejected a bail petition filed by Aminul Islam, one of the three owners of four garment factories which were set up in Rana Plaza which collapsed in April 2013.

The vacation bench of Justice Quamrul Islam Siddiqui and Justice Amir Hossain refused Aminul’s bail petition moved by Supreme Court lawyer AM Amin Uddin.
Aminul, chairman of Phantom Apparels Ltd was among 17 others charged with corruption for erecting the 10-storied Rana Plaza building illegally and using the commercial space on industrial purpose. The building had an approval for five-storie.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

tbv RanaPlaza
20150324-25

* Justice and factory fires:

It was an inferno whose flames exposed the scourge of global inequality, the vast chasm between those who wear global designer brands and those who manufacture them.

On April 24, 2013, the largest fire in the history of Bangladesh ravaged the Rana Garment Factory located on the outskirts of Dhaka. Over 1,100 people died in the blaze and more than 2,000 were injured.

When investigations were conducted, it was found that the factory was under contract to supply garments for many well-known, including designer, manufacturers. Included in the list were the Italian manufacturer Benetton, the Spanish brand Mango, the American Wal-Mart Corporation and many others.

Life for the garment workers who worked in Rana Plaza and the scores of other garment manufacturing establishments dotted across Bangladesh has never been easy.

Even before it burned down, the workers who toiled within it saw interminably long working hours, which stretched on some days from eight in the morning to three the next morning.

In the case of Rana Plaza, those who did survive were left with injuries that prevented them from working in the sorts of hours and conditions that they had endured earlier.

There was talk of compensation for the victims but the fund and parameters of how the victims would be compensated could not be agreed on until late 2013. The Rana Plaza Arrangement, developed under the auspices of local Bangladeshi groups and the International Labour Organisation, resulted in a process in which the relatives of those killed in the fire, and those who were injured, could claim reparation from the companies.

The Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund, developed via the Rana Plaza Arrangement, was given the task of collecting money from the international companies that had been using the plaza to source their merchandise.
This, unsurprisingly, proved difficult, with many manufacturers, including ones that were making whopping profits in multi-million dollar amounts, delaying and avoiding making contributions to the $40 million sum that was required to compensate the many victims.
As Max Strasser wrote in Newsweek, a whole year after the incident only half the 28 companies had put aside anything at all for the fund. Things improved with time, however, with the help of international advocacy.
read more.
DAWNnew

* 3 global orgs urge brands to pay remaining $8.5m by Apr 24:

RANA PLAZA COMPENSATION

One month before of the second anniversary of tragic Rana Plaza collapse, three global organisations on Tuesday launched a campaign calling upon brands to pay remaining $8.5 million to the Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund by April 24 for ensuring full compensation of the victims.

IndustriALL Global Union, UNI Global Union and the Clean Clothes Campaign launched the countdown campaign to remind consumers, governments and the brands that ‘almost two years on from the deadliest disaster, justice has still not been done for the thousands of workers killed and injured.’

The three organisations in a news release said the Fund had estimated that at least $30 million was needed to cover compensation claims of the over 5,000 individuals and so far $21.5 million had been paid into it through contributions from buyers, the Prime Minister’s Fund of Bangladesh and other private donors.

Till date claimants have only received a maximum of 70 per cent of what they are owed, with further payments delayed as a result of the failure of brands to pay the $8.5million needed to complete the scheme, the release said.

According to the release, a number of globally recognised brands, those were linked to the Rana Plaza factories, have refused to provide adequate payments into the Fund.
The organisations also called upon the brands and retailers even who were not linked to the Rana Plaza factories to contribute to the Fund.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

* Police stop Garments Sramik Front march:

The police on Tuesday stopped the march of Garments Sramik Front towards the labour ministry as it started from in front of the National Press Club.

The apparel worker organisation organised the march to mark the 23 months of the Rana Plaza collapse, which took place on April 24, in 2013 at Savar killing at least 1,136 people, mostly apparel workers.

The organisation organised the march demanding proper compensations for the families of the killed, injured and affected workers.
The organisation held a rally in front of the Press Club as the police stopped the march creating barricade on the road to the secretariat.

Chaired by organisation leader Khalequzzaman Lipon, the rally was addressed, among others, by Socialist Party of Bangladesh central leaders Bazlur Rashid Firoz, Razequzzaman Ratan, general secretary of the organisation Selim Mahmud and Jahangir Alam.
(…)
The memorandum put forward seven-point demands including declaring April 24 as mourning day, giving proper compensations for the Rana Plaza victims and ensuring trade union rights for the apparel workers.
National Garment Workers Federation formed a human chain in front of the Press Club demanding more compensation for the victims of the Rana Plaza collapse.
read more.
NEWAGEnew

* NGWF form human chain marking 23 month of Rana Plaza & 28 month of Tazreen tragedies:

20150324 INDUSTRYall
IndustriALL affiliate NGWF form human chain marking 23 month of Rana Plaza & 28 month of Tazreen tragedies.
INDUSRIall

* Rana Plaza: Countdown to second anniversary begins with compensation fund still $9 million short:

20150324 INDUSTRYaLL

IndustriALL Global Union, UNI Global Union and the Clean Clothes Campaign have launched a countdown to the second anniversary of Rana Plaza, calling on brands to fill the gap in compensation for victims before 24 April 2015. 

With one month to go before the second anniversary of the Rana Plaza disaster, the three organizations negotiating compensation for its victims, are today jointly launching a countdown campaign to remind consumers, governments and the brands that almost two years on from the garment industry’s deadliest disaster, justice has still not been done for the thousands of workers killed and injured.

IndustriALL Global Union, UNI Global Union and the Clean Clothes Campaign are ramping up demands on global brands linked to the disaster to fill an US$8.5million gap in the funding needed to deliver full and fair compensation to each of the over 5,000 individuals with eligible claims.

So far US$21.5 million has been paid into the Rana Plaza Donors Trust Fund through contributions from buyers, the Bangladesh Prime Ministers Fund and other private donors.
All contributions are used exclusively to make payments to Rana Plaza victims and their families.
It is calculated that at least US$30 million is needed to cover compensation claims.
To date claimants have only received a maximum of 70 per cent of what they are owed, with further payments delayed as a result of the failure of brands to pay the US$8.5million needed to complete the scheme.
(…)

IndustriALL Global Union General Secretary Jyrki Raina said, “For an industry that is all about image, the garment brands are taking shockingly long to do the right thing and close one of the most shameful chapters in the history book of the global clothing industry.”

“It has been almost two years since this industrial homicide; the victims and their families are owed compensation and the possibility to build a new future.”

UNI Global Union General Secretary Philip Jennings said, “The clock is ticking and we expect to see nothing less than full and generous contributions by April 24th from every brand still to pay.

“Garment industry brands pride themselves on being trend setters and responding to the fast-changing fashion world. In this case the brakes have been firmly slammed on.”

“Every cent of this money will go directly to families who have lost loved ones or to victims no longer able to work. It is the right thing to do.”

Ineke Zeldenrust of the Clean Clothes Campaign said: “The victims of Rana Plaza have had enough of the broken promises and false sympathy of the brands. They want this to be settled now so they can move on with their lives.”

Brands still expected to pay into the fund include:
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map of Asia

20150709
* Court orders arrest of six fugitives over Rana Plaza building construction
* Arrest warrants against Rana’s mother, five others
* Court accepts charges against owner, 17 others
* Sohel Rana, parents, 16 others indicted

20150708
* Court accepts chargesheet under BNBC
* Arrest warrant against Rana’s mother, 5 others

20150707
* Textile industry certificates more for show than safety

20150701
* Case filed against BD, three buyers
* RANA PLAZA TRAGEDY : Govt asked to find out engineer who cautioned building could collapse

20150629
* RANA PLAZA DISASTER : Police, jail authorities trade blame over not producing Rana in court
* Hearing on accepting Rana Plaza charge sheets July 8

20150628
* Rana Plaza: Order on chargesheet against Sohel Rana, 41 others July 8
* Bangladesh completes factory collapse probe
* Rana Plaza: Charge framing hearing Jul 8

20150619-20/23
* A Rana Plaza win
* All Rana Plaza victims to be compensated within weeks: ILO

20150611
* Final compensation to Rana Plaza victims soon

20150609
* Trust Fund meets $30m target to pay off all victims, families

20150608
* Rana Plaza victims’ compensation scheme secures funds needed to make final payments
* funds now available to complete payments under the Rana Plaza arrangement
* Rana Plaza victims: Final compensation payments within weeks
* Rana Plaza Donors Fund meets $30m target
* WE WON!! Rana Plaza workers get full compensation

20150603-04
* $1,000 for a Dead Family Member—Is That Justice for Bangladesh’s Garment Workers?
* No more delay in Rana Plaza case trials

20150602
* 41 face murder charge over Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh
* CID submits charges in Rana Plaza cases
* Murder charges against 41

20150601
* 42 charged over Rana Plaza collapse

20150531
* Rana, others’ charge-sheets Monday
* Owner of collapsed Bangladesh factory to face murder charges
* Rana Plaza Garment Workers’ Union gets new committee

20150527
* No more apathy towards Rana Plaza victims

20150525
* Rana Plaza victims still cry for compensation

20150522
* Rana Plaza reports now June 28

20150521
* ACC sues Sohel Rana
* Rana Plaza owner sued for ill-gotten wealth

20150520
* Rana sued for not reporting wealth
* ACC sues Rana Plaza owner on charge of accumulating illegal wealth

20150430-0501
* Loblaw hit with $2b lawsuit over Rana Plaza collapse
* Class action suit seeks $2 billion from Loblaw, Joe Fresh over 2013 Bangladesh garment factory collapse

20150428
* Rana Plaza victims sue retailers, government in US court

20150427
* RMG owners urged to help Rana Plaza victims’ children

20150426
* Retailers among Wal-Mart sued in US court
* Victims’ struggle on to rebuild life
* Rana Plaza Donor Trust Fund receives commitments for $3 million more
* Rana Plaza victims paid 70pc of Tk 1.26b compensation funds

20150425
* LEST WE FORGET
* Garment industry’s struggle not over yet two years after Rana Plaza tragedy
* Union leaders demand proper compensation
* Victim families yet to forgive, forget the pains two years after Rana Plaza tragedy
* Rana Plaza collapse 2nd anniversary commemorated with pains
* Two years of Rana Plaza tragedy- Anniversary observed
* Apathy written all over

20150424
* Joint statement on 2nd anniversary of the Rana Plaza
* Families of 104 missing Rana Plaza workers to get help
* With tears survivors show anger
* They still come, shed tears
* Two years’ gain: Neither compensation, nor justice
* Compensation claims mark Rana Plaza anniversary:
* Workers’ organizations demand compensation to victims
* Fair compensation to victims demanded
* Tears and anger as survivors mark Bangladesh factory disaster
* Workers call for maximum punishment to people responsible for Rana Plaza collapse
* Call for Rana Plaza victims’ compensation
* Two years of denial and betrayal
* Rana Plaza survivors need long-term treatment
* No end to their plight
* Rana Plaza rescue workers left uncared for
* Bureaucratic tangles delay Rana Plaza cases
* Rana Plaza rescue workers left uncared for
* Remains not examined as many still missing
* Rana Plaza probe makes no progress
* No compensation given yet to 13 missing Rana Plaza workers
* CRP gives hope to Rana Plaza survivors
* Victims yet to be paid full compensation
* Complete compensation without delay
* Full payment demanded as Trust Fund falls short

20150423
* Victims families yet to be compensated
* PMO trashes TIB report on Rana Plaza assistance
* ‘Rana Plaza victims unlikely to get justice’
* Physical, mental conditions of one-fourth Rana Plaza survivors worsen
* Apathy to Rana Plaza victims continues
* Government has no clear data on Rana Plaza victims
* Survivors left in the lurch
* Rana Plaza survivors left in the lurch
* Half of Rana survivors jobless: Survey
* Apathy to Rana Plaza victims continues
* Why only Tk 19 crore disbursed for Rana Plaza victims?

20150422
* Rana Plaza survivors still facing tough times
* Rana Plaza Survivors: Justice Delayed Is Justice Denied
* Victims face $6mn compensation shortfall
* Financial supports remain elusive to Rana Plaza victims
* Many Rana Plaza victims worse-off than before: CPD
* Debate still on about number of victims
* No major progress in compensation

20150421
* ‘No fund for Rana Plaza victims in PM Office’
* Rana Plaza: Tk 108cr PMO fund unused, says TIB
* 50 claims made by Rana Plaza victims still remain unresolved
* RMG workers, labour leaders demand highest punishment of Sohel Rana

20150420
* 70% of Rana Plaza compensation payments complete
* Rana Plaza collapse: HC seeks progress report on trial proceedings
* Human remains found in Rana Plaza debris

20150419
* Rana Plaza: a lesson forgotten?
* Rana Plaza: rallies in Bangladesh as victims await compensation
* Compensation still eludes victims
* Compensation still eludes Rana Plaza victims

20150418
* Benetton doubles compensation for Rana Plaza victims
* Benetton to pay $1.1m into Rana Plaza trust fund

20150417
* CCC believes Benetton’s 1.1 million USD contribution insufficient
* Reactive Statement: Benetton pays $1.1 million into Rana Plaza compensation fund
* Avaaz response to the announcement of Benetton on compensation for Rana Plaza victims
* Benetton Group Doubles Compensation for Rana Plaza Trust Fund Recommended by Independent Assessors

20150415
* Rana Plaza investigators get more time
* Court grants more time to Rana Plaza collapse investigator to file report

20150412
* ACC files cases against Rana’s parents

20150410
* ACC okays cases against Sohel Rana’s parents

20150406
* Build a better future for Rana Plaza survivors
* Govt, factory owners need to make good on promises

20150405
* Survey: Over half of Rana Plaza survivors still unemployed
* Self-employed Rana Plaza survivors now face fund crunch

20150404
* Rana Plaza collapse victims demand compensation

20150403
* Garments Sramik Front demand April 24 as mourning day

20150401
* Primark pays out 668 Rana Plaza victims

20150329
* Rana Plaza collapse: RMG factory owner denied bail
* HC rejects bail plea of owners of factories housed in Rana Plaza

20150324-25
* Justice and factory fires
* 3 global orgs urge brands to pay remaining $8.5m by Apr 24
* Police stop Garments Sramik Front march
* NGWF form human chain marking 23 month of Rana Plaza & 28 month of Tazreen tragedies
* Rana Plaza: Countdown to second anniversary begins with compensation fund still $9 million short

latest tweets (& news)

Convention on the Rights of the Child
Universal Declaration of Human Rights

I wonder who they are
The men who really run this land
And I wonder why they run it
With such a thoughtless hand

What are their names
And on what streets do they live
I'd like to ride right over
This afternoon and give
Them a piece of my mind
About peace for mankind
Peace is not an awful lot to ask
    David Crosby

I wonder who they are
The people who are buying these clothes
I'd like to know what they've paid for it
How much the makers have paid for this
Fairer income is not an awful lot to ask
Better working conditions is not an awful lot to ask
    A. Searcher

For more and other (labour) news you can follow on twitter: @asearcher2