DHAKA, Bangladesh — Roy Ramesh Chandra is secretary general of the IndustriALL Bangladesh Council, president of the United Federation of Garment Workers and a substitute member of the governing body of the Industrial Labor Organization. His voice is being heard in several quarters of Dhaka, not least by the workers and on a broader platform by the many different stakeholders that have come together in the wake of the Rana Plaza tragedy.
Here, Chandra discusses the changes that have taken place in the industry since the tragedy, and what lies ahead:
WWD: Looking back at this year after Rana Plaza in which there have been many changes, do you feel a sense of satisfaction, or frustration? Roy Ramesh Chandra: That is a difficult one. There have been some improvements. First, the minimum wage has been increased 77 percent, the labor law has been amended, the Accord, the Alliance and the National Tripartite plan of action are doing inspections to determine shortcomings in terms of structural safety and fire and electrical safety. So these are improvements. Although these are a bit slow, we need to have them speed up and pick up momentum. At the same time, we need to bear in mind that things cannot change overnight. This is a reality in our part of the country; things takes time.
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