Arun Devnath and Renee Dudley
November 27, 2012
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT), the world’s largest retailer, fired a supplier that made apparel at a Bangladesh factory where more than 100 people died in the country’s deadliest ever blaze at a garment facility.
“The Tazreen factory was no longer authorized to produce merchandise for Walmart,” Kevin Gardner, a Walmart spokesman, said in an e-mailed statement. “A supplier subcontracted work to this factory without authorization and in direct violation of our policies. Today, we have terminated the relationship with that supplier.” He declined to name the supplier.
The factory, owned by Tazreen Fashion Ltd., had no emergency exits, and many workers were burnt alive, as they got trapped in heavy smoke, said Muhammad Mahboob, a director at the Fire Service and Civil Defence. Some workers jumped from the eight-story building to escape the flames, according to Mohammad Sharif, who runs a local grocery store and whose parents-in-law worked at the plant.