staff reporter, Dhaka : Bogra District Bidi Owners and Workers Union formed a human chain and encirclement program in response to a five-point demand including the prohibition of counterfeit bidi and brand rolls. They organized this event in front of the District’s Customs, Excise, and VAT office at 11 am on Wednesday. They demanded that fake bidi and brand rolls be removed from human chains, that the customs authorities take action against illegal bidi factories evading duty, that the advance 10 percent income tax on bidi be rescinded, that the customs authorities take action against the owners of online-licensed bidi and their employees, and that workers be permitted to work six days per week.
The human chain of speakers stated that the significance of the bidi industry to the nation’s economy is enormous. This historic, labor-intensive industry generates enormous amounts of annual money. However, some unscrupulous bidi merchants have dodged billions of dollars in income by selling counterfeit bidi and bidi with counterfeit brand rolls in an effort to ruin the bidi business. In the sake of the country’s growth, advancement, and actual bidi owners, the customs authorities should take the necessary steps to halt unlawful bidi manufacturers and counterfeit bidi. They should be arrested and punished together. Moreover, workers at bidi industries are required to work six days every week.
Bangladesh Bidi Workers Federation President MK Bangali, General Secretary Abdur Rahman, Joint Secretary Harik Hossain among others took part in the program.