Baghlan coal miners go on strike over low wages


PUL-I-KHUMRI (PAN): Hundreds of coal miners in northern Baghlan province on Sunday went on strike, calling for increase in their wages and provision of mining equipment.

About 400 workers stopped coal extraction from mines in Sang-i-Karkar, DoodKash and Ahan Dara areas and staged a demonstration in Pul-i-Khumri, the provincial capital.

The protestors said they would not go back at work until their wages were increased and required mining tools provided.

Officials of private firms involved in coal mining projects confirmed the problems faced by workers, but they link raise in wages to increase in production.

"Four years back, officials promised our wages will be increased, but no steps have so far been taken in this regard," Lajward Khan, 30, one of the protestors, said. Currently the salary of each worker is at about 4,000 afghanis ($87.98).

He said they were promised their pays would reach from 4,000 afghanis to 10,000 or 15,000 afghanis. "The promise made us to work more hard, but to no avail," he said.

Another protestor, Mohammadullah, who works at DoodKash coal mine, said they would not work and would not allow others to work until their demands were met.


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