"The workers fell ill due to hunger and cold. Around 26 of them have been admitted to different local hospitals"
A jute mill worker, who had been on fast unto death along with his fellows to press home their 11-point demand, died in Khulna Medical College Hospital on Thursday.
The deceased was identified as Abdur Sattar, 45, a worker of Platinum Jubilee Jute Mills Limited in Khulna.
Confirming the death, project officer at the jute mill Ghulam Rabbani said, "The deceased fell ill on Thursday morning during the hunger strike. He died at Khulna Medical College Hospital while undergoing treatment."
More than a hundred workers of the state-owned jute mills in Khulna became sick on Thursday due to the ongoing hunger strike to press home their 11-point demand.
Some of the demands are forming a wage board commission, payment of wages in due time, and adequate government investment in the jute industry.
"The workers got sick due to hunger and cold. Around 26 of them have been admitted to different local hospitals including Khulna Medical College Hospital," said Khalilur Rahman, joint convener of the State-Owned Jute Mills CBA and Non-CBA Sangram Parishad.
The rest are being treated with saline at the place of the strike, he added.
Khalilur Rahman said workers' leaders met State Minister for Labour and Employment Begum Monnujan Sufian at her residence on Wednesday night where the state minister urged the protesting workers to postpone their strike till December 15.
A meeting is scheduled to be held between the protesters and the jute minister on December 15, said the leaders.
However, the leaders said they would continue their strike until the wage board commission is set up.
Meanwhile, the production in the mills has stopped due to the strike. The protesting workers said they would not return home until their demands are met.
On November 17, the state-owned Jute Mill CBA-Non-CBA Sangram Parishad called for a six-day programme to press home their 11-point demand.
The programme began on November 25.
Workers from Crescent Jute Mills, Khalishpur Jute Mills, Daulatpur Jute Mills, Platinum Jubilee Jute Mills, Star Jute Mills, Aleem Jute Mills, Eastern Jute Mills, Carpeting Jute Mills and JJI Jute Mills took part in the strike.